The cast studies in chapter 7 were really interesting but it made me thing about the fact that even if some courses are offered in certain types of seminars (ie: student led, games, development programs), it seems to me that not every course is offered in each format. While a science course could be offered in a certain type of seminar, it may not be offered in an other type of way, which means that people that learn differently and want to take a certain course, do not have the option of another mode of learning. This concerns me because, for example, I am taking KIN110 online this semester and while the content is not too complex, I do not like to take exams and I do not feel like they show my full potential. I prefer to write papers or do projects because memorization and rote memory are not how I learn. I think that when certain types of seminars are available online, then each course should be available in each type of format, for different learning.
I agree with you, Sophia – that would be amazing if courses were offered in different learning styles. But, unfortunately, that may never happen. Last week we were talking about standardized testing and the unfortunate continued use of these tests in “grading” students. If the option ever existed to offer multiple courses in different learning styles, it wouldn’t work under the standardized model as then we wouldn’t be graded in the same fashion. I just want to be clear that I am totally against standardized testing, but can see why it has been so popular. I’m terrible with multiple choice, and feel it is not an accurate measure of my intelligence on any topic, but we’re all forced to take multiple choice exams at one time or another (especially high school) to put us all on an even playing field, which is ironic in itself.
What caught my eye in this chapter was the use of educational games in collaborative learning. River City sounds like the coolest way to educate kids about hypothesis making. Remember the Yukon Trail or Mathblasters (which I think they still make)?
I agree with you, for the most part. I think there is still a place in our eduction system for standardized testing. Its the easiest, simplest form of marking and grading students. Teachers know exactly where everyone falls and so do students. Nevertheless, ranking students based on mostly on standardized testing shouldn’t be the sole contributor to ones grade.
Every class Linda makes a point of criticizing standardized testing, and with good reason. Personally, I never questioned the methods of how professors grade and teach, I focused on questioning the content. However, I find it interesting part of our midterm exam is multiple choice questions…Hmmm.
Sophia I agree with the point you made above. Chapter seven presented four different case studies and four different pedagogies of facilitating online collaborative learning. It was very interesting and helpful to see OCL put into perspective for me because for weeks OCL was only an idea I was skeptical about and could not see in context. The case studies, especially with online virtual games and immersive environments, surely removed much of my skepticism in terms of being able to engage all learners. However, similar to the point Sophia made, although there are different pedagogies in which OCL can be facilitated to adhere or cater to different material being learned, it is likely not the case that every course will be available in every course topic. My concern is that, as volunteer teacher myself of young children, I know that part of my job is to watch the different learning styles children have. Some absolutely cannot work in group settings, some can only learn visually and some are very intelligent and are clearly ahead of other classmates and need to be challenged further. Also, there is a particular relationship I have with the parents of the students, where they trust me to teach not only curriculum but also life lessons, for example, one mother pulled me aside the other day and asked me if I could please tell her son Steven to stop bullying his brother because she said apparently he listens to whatever I say. Although OCL offers so many benefits and the interconnectivity of the process prove to be quite state of the art, it is important to not ignore what would be lost as well.
Chapter 7 outlines four fictional studies on how to approach and execute OCL effectively. After reading scenario two, which discusses how to conduct web seminars, I feel a lot more comfortable with the role of moderating and participating in our student –led seminars in a couple of weeks. It is important to realize that there are many things to consider when designing the presentation since different approaches come with its own benefits and limitations. I think it will be challenge to push the lesson through the three processes discussed last class. I am still a little uneasy about how to reach a point of intellectual convergence as people’s opinion and arguments may differ drastically.
These scenarios highlight the major advantages that come with OCL. Although these are fictional scenarios, I can see how these situations can potentially occur in real life. Being able to access your ‘virtual’ classroom 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from anywhere in the world is significant.
Scenario 4 highlights the use of collaborative learning in multi-player education games. I agree with Marianna, that this sounds like an awesome way to get individuals interested in learning. I think that the constant interaction involved in online educational games create a knowledge building environment that is not only stimulating but also engaging.
Studies “find that Video Games can yield 7-40% improvement in learning over lectures” Guess all those years of Word of Warcraft is paying off. And here I thought I was wasting my time! 🙂
Chapter 7 gave real-world examples of the themes and terms we’ve been discussing so far. Focusing on the four pedagogic scenarios from four virtual students the Chapter outlines online simulations and case studies of virtual organizations, student-led online seminars, co-production of real-world products and programs and lastly online educational games and immersive learning environments.
I’d like to focus on the last pedagogical scenario, it interested me the most. I like many other enjoy playing video games such as World of Warcraft. However the skepticism has been challenged in this chapter with emerging research combined with new developments in online educational games which showcases positive learning potential. The chapter listed examples such as Food Force, Whyville, River City and Immune Attack as success gaming tools which target students of different demographics, ages and education levels. They indirectly teach students how to collaborate together, identify problems through observation, test hypotheses and deduce evidence based on common conclusions. I found the research most fascinating. In Communication studies you only hear of the negative, detrimental effects of violent and graphic video games; however, the chapter indicates that research finds online games have promising results. “Good pedagogy leads to positive outcomes, while weak pedagogical design in the software yields poor results” Additionally, studies found that Video Games can yield 7-40% improvement in learning over lectures!! Its proven to work for military use when training future pilots how to fly using gaming simulations, why can’t it work for students? The militaries application of video games is highly successful in transferring of learning from the educational setting to the real-world application.
My prediction and hope for OCL is that more video games, interactive displays of education and collaboration among students in these games becomes a more commonly used tool in our education system. For the most part, kids love video games and visual components to learning, why not use video games? Once we shake of the negative stigma of video games, there is a highly useful tool waiting to be unleashed.
I have to say that the practice of OCL pedagogies introduced in Chapter 7 is very interesting and attractive. However, maybe we have been accustomed to the traditional education mode so that we cannot accept and adapt to OCL in a short time. We may are still skeptical about its effect. I know that through OCL we can get much more resources of information and knowledge, but the attitude of students towards to study is still very important. If they do not want to study any education model is useless.
The OCL scenarios are creative, especially online educational games. I think most boys will show great interest on it. If study is really like playing games learning efficiency will be much higher. How to make the educational games attractive and interesting is the biggest challenge.
In the 4 different scenarios I was surprised to find different ways of learning than I have normally experienced in university. I can’t help to think to myself if one of these 4 scenarios were put in place in the online courses I have taken I would have found them to be a lot more interesting and I would have retained more of the information for future use. I was particularly intrigued with the video games and how they can be used for educational purposes. I never really thought about using a video game to to teach and to improve the traditional teacher student learning system. I would really like to take a course or experience this in action.
These learning scenarios helped to realize the different people that are now able to take online courses today. A university in Canada could have students that are permanently living in other countries all over the world and still are able to interact with the other students in the course. It was also interesting to see how we are going to be doing our moderating and it helped to show that this is a good learning experience and that it could be put in place in other courses in many different subjects. I am now really looking forward to seeing this different learning style as I don’t usually excel in the traditional teacher student learning system!
In chapter 7, we were introduced to OCL learning in practice. We were introduced to implementations of OCL pedagogies in 4 different scenarios comprising of 4 virtual students. Although the examples are scenarios, they nevertheless exemplify our role as both moderators and participants in discussion in upcoming weeks. Although no teaching method suits all types of students, chapter 7 does a good job of depicting the advantages and disadvantages of OCL pedagogies.
Adapting to OCL pedagogies should certainly influence how we perceive the 21st century classroom in that, once again, students learning in different mediums. Considering that each academic subject is taught in a specific manner, i.e. through labs, seminars, online classes and lectures, it is obvious that each student is not catered to when it comes to having the best suited method of learning. Labs for example are reserved to science students and therefore students of the English department wanting to learn hands-on are never exposed to such learning environments.
I believe that I am in agreement with other students in the class in thinking that in order to get individuals interested, we must constantly stimulate the learner’s attention. It becomes our duty as moderators to make knowledge building a positive, interactive and engaging experience despite the limitations of the medium itself. OCL pedagogies do a great job at demonstrating the communal aspect of knowledge, which is the downfall of traditional classroom settings.
Building from the previous chapter which shed light on online collaborative learning pedagogy, and outlining the theory behind the three pillars of intellectual process (entailing namely Idea Generating, Idea Organizing, Intellectual Convergence), Chapter 7 takes these processes and infuses them into real-world scenarios. By providing examples of OCL pedagogies in practice, we gained insight on the value of online/web-mediated education (at both formal and informal levels) while zooming into the different situations in which students can benefit. Not only do things like online seminars bridge spatial and temporal gaps catering to a wide number of students around the world, but the web is seen to serve as a hub in which rich discourse, innovative thoughts, and game-changing ideas can thrive.
The fourth scenario focusing on online educational games and immersive learning environments particularly caught my attention. I recently came across an article which talks about a ‘tool kit’ which was produced with the aim of “help[ing] teachers integrate game design across the curriculum”. You can access it here: http://www.avatargeneration.com/2012/09/professional-development-for-teachers-learning-games-design/ — I think infusing game mechanics into everyday learning is something that has been starting to gain traction in recent times, and I am excited to see/learn about how effective these contemporary means of gamifying education are and exploring its potential.
Reading Chapter 7 was a bit of a relief as I got from it some kind of concrete idea of how this will actually work. Scenario Two ( p. 114 ) the” Student-led Online Seminars” was particularly useful in that I presume it approximates what we will be doing shortly.
At this point I’m just guessing or speculating as to how it will be to actually do this, particularly the moderating part. I was most interested in ideas like “weaving” to synthesize the discussion and highlight important bits without being overly directive. I also liked the notion of not looking for “right” or “wrong” contributions; of being non-judgemental and non-dictatorial while moderating.
I also re-read Chapter 6 and really liked the notion ( p. 105 ) of the primacy of writing. I have moved or changed what I think about this. I was convinced that online collaboration would be hindered by not having actual physical proximity to people in order to read subtle non-verbal communication. I recognize that a huge amount of intellectual communication is possible and takes place with text. Of course non-verbal cues are critical in intimate communication, but with intellectual “knowledge building” ( to use the jargon ), not so much, if at all.
I think implementing a gaming style system of learning into an immersive learning environment is a brilliant idea. I’ve spent countless hours playing games in high school when I should have been studying. Studies show we spend about three billion hours a week playing games; so why not implement gaming into the education systems. I remember when I was in grade 10 my social studies teacher created this online forum where the students had to post on current events. You could create your own profile and make it as imaginary as you wanted it to be. The objective of posting onto the forum was to level up your character profile. The more you posted about current events and responded to other peoples post the more points you earned and also you unlocked more privileges on the site. The forum worked, almost everyone in the class would log on regularly to post new current events and discuss different topics. Some of the topics were geared towards the material we were learning in class and some of it was just random news. Grade 10 for me was about 7 years ago and this teacher Mr. Sale made learning interesting and more adaptive to the knowledge age. Also really good TED talk on gaming
Reading through chapter 7 gave me good ideas on how to facilitate Online Seminars for the final assignment. I find that the descriptions on the different kinds of pedagogies were thoroughly specific and helpful; I no longer find the assignment to be too vague and muddy to complete. Using four real life scenarios from the individuals also helped me create a context as to how beneficial OCL can be especially for people who have no set time for sitting in a classroom for a number of hours per day.
Having this context in mind, I am no longer against the idea of online learning. I used to see online learning as very one way in terms of communicating course information. Having to grow up in a type of education wherein communicating face to face was the only way of learning, I was fully against the idea of learning in front of a computer screen. But seeing that face to face learning is not the only answer to education, OCL seems to be the future for on the go individuals. (I still firmly believe that it’s not the only future to education since it is still a fairly new theory in learning)
Overall, in having to read this chapter, I find that online simulations, especially when merely beginning with facilitation, is an effective way to get started with the generating of ideas. In this way, the discussants are able to place themselves within the scenario and be on their way into viewing the topic with the lens that the facilitators are presenting.
I was definitely glad that Chapter 7 gave an overview of OCL pedagogies. By describing in detail 4 pedagogic scenarios of online simulations and student-led seminars, I definitely have a better understanding of not only the experience of the moderators of an online learning environment, but also the participants. The student-led online seminar example also clarified many questions that I had about our upcoming seminars that we are supposed to be leading for the class. I found that because these seminars were led by students who are our peers, discussion and participation is more immersive and encouraging. Previously, I felt that discussion online might not have the quality or depth during debate or exchange of information, however in a well formed and structured seminar discussion, participants focus more on information generating and organizing rather than being right or wrong.
It is normal to agree to disagree and through discussion with peers intellectual convergence is achieved more easily, especially being able to go back and read everyone’s posts online. Being able to refer back to people’s varying views and perspectives, it is much easier to understand the proposed views and see how they all tie together. Thus, reaching a conclusion is much more effective because of the depth and encouragement for discourse that is backed up by evidence rather than personal views. Having a moderator is of course necessary to facilitate the discussion so that participants stay on track. Also, since online platforms seem more informal students are less weary of being “right” or “wrong” and becoming involved or part of the debate is therefore more productive during the learning process.
I understand that the ability to learn online with asynchronous time-displacement is a great idea for people that do not have the time to sit in on a lecture. I feel that this collaborative learning can still be fulfilled without the need for an online component, this will ruin the asynchronous time-placement, of course. But it still allows for the discourse that we have been aiming for, in this course. Personally, I feel that the university life needs to be lived if possible. I could sit behind a computer and type until my fingers bled, but when it came to face-to-face I was a ghost. So this online collaborative learning is a great idea, but I still feel that seeing people face to face and actually speaking about your stance is something that is needed within life. I am not against OCL but think that it should try to be partnered with a potential multimedia aspect, i.e. Skype which not only gets the student to become comfortable with speaking their thoughts rather than typing and also gets them to think on their feet. I always find with a typing aspect of communication you are aloud that time-displacment to think of what you want to say. But this is not always an option in the real world and people still need that skill of thinking and reacting on their feet, and not have that luxury of retyping or continually practicing what you are going to say.
I was really happy that chapter 7 offered detailed examples of online education. Specifically, the second scenario, I thought was the most useful to read because it is directly applicable to the seminars we’ll be starting soon. Prior to doing the readings, I was really scrambling to understand what the role of a moderator is. Anyways, success on that front!
What got me thinking though was the bit on video gaming. I myself am not a huge gamer, though I own an xbox and periodically spend a bit of time on it. But I can’t imagine ever wanting to sit down for hours on end. With that said, because gaming for hours is a reality, I think educational gaming has a lot of potential to grow. It’s becoming more obvious that lecture style education is not as applicable with younger generations, so it’s good to see that the gap between tech/gaming and education is tightening up.
I realize this comment is late, but better late than never!
Chapter 7 provided a good example of how the OCL framework can be designed and how it works to cater to specific groups in different OCL models. As Oliver mentioned above, scenario two was most useful to understand the moderating role which we will be engaging with in our upcoming seminars for this course.
I think for me the first three scenarios depicted the general reasons and use of OCL, such as in the case of continuing education or education accessible for individuals in other areas around the world. Another point that Oliver brought up was on the topic of video gaming. I think this is an interesting place where education has a high potential to grow, particularly for the younger generation. I myself never really engaged in gaming, but this seems to be popular both in and outside the classroom for students in elementary and high school these days. I think more games such as FoodForce developed by the United Nations is a key example of educating youth to become aware and engaged of such activities that are reflected in the real world. Organizations struggling to get younger generations involved should invest in these kinds of models to increase awareness and engagement as an important means to ready them for the future.
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The main goal of OCL theory is to bring students from a process of divergent thinking to intellectual convergence. The book has previously discussed this fact in the context of certain online environments (i.e. wikis), however I would never have considered online gaming to be a prime example. It seems to me though that, while educational games and games with educational environments offer constant interaction within a more recreational time and space, there is always an overlying potential for online gaming learning environments to have poorly-designed pedagogies. For example, it seems to me that while holding lectures/seminars over multiplayer platforms such as Second Life (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5QJoEYmUvTU) could be helpful, there remains too much potential for distraction in an infinite virtual environment. If means of learning are to be performed online, then I feel it would have to be within an environment which is a lot more focused/selective (i.e. games which are only meant for educational purposes, rather than virtual environments which could be used in various settings).
As for the student-led online seminar example, I think there is something to be said for what bringing students to an intellectual convergence actually implies. The term might suggest that there has to be this *agreement* between the student participants on the conclusion of a certain topic. Rather, it was a good clarification, for myself as well as for others, to point out that the participants dont have to agree with one another, rather they just have to come to a form of greater understanding – from divergent thinking, to a convergence of understanding.
Chapter 7 introduces us to the world of online collaborative learning. The case studies show us how students interact and share the knowledge via online collaborative leaning tool. OCL introduces four fictional students who are participating in online courses and shows how students engage. So the role of the instructor in online collaborative learning is to introduce the material that students need to learn, also introduce discussion questions that can engage students to participate online and share their ideas and opinions. Most important part from the instructor is to make this collaboration interesting and engaging. The instructor wants to teach students how to be moderators and discussants, also to teach students how to lead seminars as well as how to be a discussant and just interact in the discussion of particular topic or question.
After reading chapter 7 I understood how collaborative learning works, and how students gain knowledge and how they interact with each other. As with every learning technique there can be advantages and disadvantages. Personally I think that this type of learning tool may serve as a benefit for students to learn online because it is convenient and they can interact more than in classroom when professor has a 2 hours lecture, but from another side it might not serve as advantage because students who learn strictly online might not be able to develop communication skills and how to collaborate face to face which may not be a benefit for the future employer.
Chapter 7 goes in more depth with regards to OCL, including some of the different forms, approaches, and processes are used to support effective learning and educational change. The chapter does this by providing different scenarios, which illuminate OCL pedagogies in practice, through the examination of institutional adoption of online learning. These scenarios provide an example of the use of online courses and how students engage, which helps us visualize what happens in virtual classrooms and online learning contexts, both formally and informally.
I really liked the quote Linda used at the beginning of the chapter, especially the notion that “It is a conservation which goes on both in public and within each of ourselves…And it is this conversation which, in the end, gives place and character to every human activity and utterance” (p. 109). Introduced in Chapter 6 and brought up again in Chapter 7, the main goal for OCL to be effective is that it needs to have online collaboration –group discussions, message boards, etc. – which gives the users an ability to interact and share with one another, promoting the transfer of knowledge. The student-led online examples I believe are an efficient means of OCL being that each individual brings their own knowledge and experiences to share with others. This leads to divergent thinking, and a greater convergence of understanding. The chapter ended with online learning initiatives that did not succeed as well as key problems in relation to institutional adoption of online education.
Chapter 7 focuses on Online Collaborative Learning (OCL) pedagogies and the ways in which participation through online learning takes place. Different scenarios and blended models of learning to deliver various forms of education at a global scale are discussed. This includes online simulations, student-led online seminars, programs and educational games.
The discussion about Scenario One: Online Case Studies (Simulations) provides an understanding of the possibilities online learning can bring to students. By promoting online interaction with other students and the use of problem-solving tools and processes, students can expand their learning and gain new insight of information. In contrast to the traditional form of textbook learning, engaging in different approaches to education provide intellectual convergence. Online group dynamics, how to facilitate collaborative learning and progresses are important. Applying these techniques and concepts will help to generate knowledge through an immersive learning environment. All 4 scenarios describe the benefits to Online Collaborative Learning and the ability to have a virtual classroom available at any time. Different learning styles can be accommodated through Online Collaborative Learning and help to build effective online communities. Ultimately, OCL provides a new way of thinking, achieving knowledge-based goals and shared processes of building individual learning and understanding.
Chapter 7 offered a detailed example in Online Collaborative Learning. After reading Chapter 7, some of my concerns have been solved. What enlightened me a lot was the part that describing the role of moderator. Since our online seminar will begin soon, a clear description of what a moderator should and should not do is very important. Before I read the chapter, I thought as a moderator, I should contribute as many comments as possible in order to make sure that the discussion is not off-track. However, Chapter 7 ‘warned’ me in ‘Facilitation” by saying “The moderator team must not overwhelm the conference with too many notes”. The discussants may become too involved in idea generating, then what should the moderate team do to keep everyone on track and acknowledge valuable ideas? This Chapter also offered me answers. The role of the moderator is not to judge the discussants ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, therefore, the moderator team can ask discussants to cite evidences for their views. Instead of offering comments on the answers, moderators can ask the discussant to present his/her key ideas in order to advance the discussion.
Another interesting part that caught my attention was Scenario Four: Online Educational Games and Immersive Learning Environments. Online video games can be educational, such as River City which helps students in grade 6 through 9 understand three diseases and how they affect our health. This is also an important feature of Online Collaborative Learning. On the one hand, it requires online team work, this is the major factor for people who support OCL. It helps users gain experience on both online technology and team work. On the other hand, delivering knowledge through game will attract more attentions from the students. Unlike traditional lectures that most students are doing a passive learning, in OCL (online games), students are motivated and learning through their own experience. Comparing to lectures, it is much more easy for students to memorize. If we are able to make good use of online games, the future of OCL can be seen in this sense.
This chapter introduces us the process of online seminar in a very detailed ways, and the ultimate goal of this kind of online seminar is to approach the eventual intellectual convergence throughout the process of idea generation among participants, such as brainstorm and debate, and the process of idea organization, in which student’s diverse ideas will be organized in a more systematic framework for the ultimate idea convergence. And this chapter also emphasizes on the significant role of discussion questions in approaching this kind of convergence, which provides us a perfect guide for our presentations as well.
Nevertheless, combining what I have learned from the lecture the chapter 6, it is believed that the most significant phrase of “learning process” is the intellectual convergence that systematically transforms diverse ideas into convergence and subsequently build us a common language and common sense throughout the melting process of different ideas among students. More importantly, you emphasized that this process of idea intergradation is not actually to shape our ideas and generate them into one universal idea, but more likely to build a more effective framework for all of us to learn, to absorb and to apply our knowledge within this convergence framework. So in my perspective, instead of generating the similar ideas, outputs and singularity that conventional learning meth features, the interactive communication and group collaboration that OLC and online seminar features focus more on the invention, innovation and reconstruction of knowledge, ideas, which is more likely to produce intelligent humans with strong ability of group collaboration and creativity rather than robot- like mechanical service class.
This chapter gives a step-by-step guide to the Student-led Online Seminars. It highlights that the Discussion Questions are of the most important to keep the week long facilitations flowing through Idea Generating (IG), Idea Organizing (IO), then lastly, intellectual convergence(IC). This chapter also suggests workable ideas for each of the three steps. For IG, it is important to have a question that stimulates idea inputs with the help of good literature on the side. For IC, “weaving” is a good way to highlight the good and important points made during the comments by the participants. It is during this stage that the facilitators have to remember that they are simply facilitators; they cannot be too involved with the discussions. In the last part: IO, facilitators have to remember that it is not themselves that need to reach intellectual convergence, but the participants. This is why it is key to come up with ideas to lead people into being able to “agree to disagree”. The text suggests using voting of three major options discussed throughout the week.
The last part of the whole facilitating assignment is to come up with an analysis of the discourse. The data gathered are to be organized day-by-day then transferred and made into visual charts to show “intellectual change over time”. (p. 117)
Chapter 7 provides scenarios as to how online collaborative learning would function in a classroom environment. Because for this class, we have to do the same thing, it was interesting to get a better understanding of what is planned for future classes. The online seminar section provides the reader with an idea of the possible question and difficulties that may arise when moderating. The importance of good and engaging discussion questions and the need for those questions to lead the group and facilitate them in the intended direction is vital. The different words that we should avoid using while facilitating an online seminar shows me that there are many little things that can ruin the direction of the online seminar and the importance of being well prepared. Also even though the seminar may be finished, the work is not over until the session and transcripts are analyzed. This summary will provide the moderators with a better understanding of the success and failures of the online seminar and it will allow us to see how much knowledge creation occurred and if the results of the online seminar were what we desired.
Chapter 7, OCL Pedagogies in Practice
In Chapter 7, the focus is on Online Collaborative Learning (OCL) pedagogies and an explanation with examples is given in which four students participate through online learning due to their circumstances of not being able to attend a college physically. Online simulations, student-led discussions, software, game, and discussions are all examples included in this chapter in which education through online modes of learning is accomplished from a variety of students located all around the world.
The four OCL pedagogic scenarios are from real online schools which are presented as the following;
1) Online simulations and case studies of virtual organizations
2) Student led online seminars
3) Co-production of real world products and programs
4) Online educational game and immersive learning environments
Scenario One: Online Case Studies, provides an “analysis of a system by observing specific situations or processes in order to solve problems” (page 113). With online case studies, interaction is accomplished amongst students and the use of real problem solving tools and processes. This provides intellectual convergence, and we can see that are educational learning methods are shifting from the old didactic forms of pen and paper.
Scenario Two: Student-led online seminars, where this pedagogy is essential for all learners involved at all levels of institution. This scenario was an important read for me as our classes online seminar will begin soon and I will be a moderator. This chapter makes it clear that as a moderator through “facilitation” I should not be commenting on every post made in the seminar, and I should not be judging the opinions put forward by the discussants, but I should encourage them to further develop their ideas and back their opinions with concrete information.
Scenario Three: Online Global Professional Development Program discusses how participants in an online educational course are using computer software and forums as an asynchronous learning environment to support group discussion and put forward their opinions.
Scenario Four: Online Educational Games and Immersive Learning Environments explains how games can be educational too, given the example shown in the book of River City which aids students from grades six to 9 understand health care by learning about infections and diseases. Not only does this method of learning require collaborative learning, it simply seems a lot more fun and advanced in comparison to our previous methods of learning. This is OCL for me at its finest; where students can learn in a way they enjoy it.
Scenario two of chapter seven describes how online seminars work. The seminar usually begins with introductions and the presentation, which provides the background and key information about the topic. Once the moderating team has welcomed the discussants. They present three discussion questions (DQs). DQs should be open-ended, encouraging multiple perspectives on the topic. Along with the DQs, presenters should supply a few readings to help discussants with information and data. Discussants need to be bale to provide evidence for their views, such as references to readings. Moderators should highlight the important points that were brought up to help discussants work towards intellectual achievement. The seminar ends with a summary and transcript analysis of the discourse. In the summary, moderators need to assess how well their seminar design functioned, level of user activity and lessons learned.
Chapter 7 give us the idea of how to conduct an online seminar more effectively and efficiently and how to put OLC learning in practice. It is interesting to have various scenarios mentioned in this chapter and that we can relate ourselves to those virtual students and their experiences of online education when we actually have to conduct the seminar in a few weeks later.
From this, it refers to how OLC theory applies to our virtual classroom through the process of idea generating, idea organizing and intellectual convergence. It is the key to lead the peers from brainstorming, discussion, and collaboration to finally make a position – “agree to disagree”.
Besides, it gives me a chance to experience how beneficial it is for OCL in which we can self-pace our learning or participation with the support of other peers. It also gives me more confidence on how to facilitate the online seminar and participate. And I understand the role of moderator/ facilitator – being engaged, interact with our peers and also think of some good discussion questions- those are the keys to moderate the online seminar effectively.
Chapter seven provides an overview of several different OCL scenarios. It describes, through four sample students, the types of students for whom online learning is valuable, for a variety of reasons including time and location based constraints. Scenario two is a helpful depiction of the seminars we will be holding in a few weeks. It emphasises the importance of discussion questions that lead to thoughtful responses beyond simply, “I agree.” The description of scenario two shows how the process of idea generating, idea organising, and intellectual convergence can occur through thoughtful discussion guided by well designed discussion questions.
The different online collaborative scenarios in chapter 7 presents how the intellectual phases occur in practice. Scenario 2 (student-led online seminars), provides an insight to the dynamics of our own class projects that we will be doing in two weeks. Personally, I’ve always thought that online seminars would be really beneficial to the discussants. But what the readings made me realize, is that there the intellectual phases also occur within the group of students leading the seminar. The chapter talked about designing discussion questions (DQ) effectively to generate thoughtful discussions. I realized that the very act of designing the seminar and DQs pushes the group to generate ideas (IG), get organized (IO), and reach a decision as to how to strategically lead the online seminar (IC).
The thoery of how to realize online collaberative learning can be obtained from the book. However, when we put these thories into practice, there are many difficulties to face. The hardest step is the last phase: intellectual convergence. Until now we still cannot give the best answer to it. The Chapter 7 talked about the practice of student-led pratice. The OLC employs a significant teacher role and emphasizes on student discourse and collaboration. I think this chapter shows a good example for us to practice on how to carry out a online seminar in the following weeks.
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