Week 10 Reflection 674
This week we wrote about “How can we manage the change that is inherent in our distance learning efforts?” To keep up with change, we need to keep up with technology and demographic and pedagogic trends that will be driving distance learning in the coming years. We are at a point in our history where people are seeking to gain more knowledge, and, increasingly, that is occurring through online learning.
In responding to others’ blogs, Teresa talked about the rate at which technology is changing so rapidly, that much of what students in college programs learn will be obsolete in a couple years. I think this is why many students have to take classes online—to keep up with the changes in technology. We as teachers need to keep up with new programs and technologies, because if we don’t, we won’t keep up with our students.
I told Amy that I know I am one of those teachers who seems to be unable to keep up with all of the changes that happen every year. I can’t always follow what media the kids are using today, including new apps and other tools. I am taking classes to try to keep up with new technology. I think the Quality Matters rubric would be good to assess our online courses. I like what Amy said here: “Keep learning through seeking out contact with people in the field, participating in learning communities, reading research, and trying out new technologies to see if they would enhance online learning.”
Sara talked about online learning labs for science. I responded that I thought was very cool; working virtually, students can mess up without fear. They don’t have to worry about spilling or breaking something. She mentioned there is a need to work on the standards. There are so many standards. This is to the point that Sara mentions here: “In an online course you are teaching so much more than just the content and this can be quite the challenge.” We need to keep up on so much just to stay ahead of the game.
Josie mentioned there are so many useful programs that we are just waiting to discover. I am amazed at how many programs and apps and lessons that you can choose from. She mentioned training as important, as well, which I agreed with, because when you learn something new, you need to be properly trained so you use and teach it correctly.
It has been a good week. I am working on my unit and now am on the rubric. I was thinking it was the one we have on Google docs, but that is not what everyone had. I need to work on that and also start to draft my philosophy of online teaching. These weeks are going by so fast; I am just trying to keep pace. I am glad we don’t have a blog next week so I can work on my unit and start on my philosophy. It’s good that we’ll still be meeting, though, so I can get feedback on my unit from others in the group. It helps me to have classmate input, so I look forward to that.