Monday, February 23, 2009

Podcasting article

I found the article on podcasts in the material that came from MIT. How very topical I thought as my colleagues and I have just been approved to buy a couple of ipods for the night staff and PC deprived areas to listen to and watch. So, I thought I'll read that!! And I did......

Having finished it, I felt a little underwhelmed....that OK so what? feeling That wow what a lot of effort in the thinking about how to present a lecture when I see my students regularly recording lectures for review at a later date (or for the students who aren't there!).....It bothered me....We don't usually get articles sent to us for no good I have been reflecting on what learning I can take from it.

Ostensibly, there's the evaluation: looking at different options, trialing them together which surely saves time. The reaslisation that what was originally thought to be a great solution in fact, turned out to be best in a different format. But I am still not really 'getting' this. After all, for most of us the choice between broadcasting a lecture would be F2F or audio....(+/-) powerpoint for a number of reasons including webspace; technical hardware and an editing what has been bugging me...all week....

An then..the universe collides! An 'Aha!' moment that Gagne would have wept for.......I had a conversation today with someone who wants to 'do' e-learning. By 'doing' e-learning the development goes that they want to make available some informational material in an electronic format. Hardly e-learning to me as a half way through graduate student.....and then later....(much later......sometime between wringing out wet children and putting them in warm pyjamas it dawned on me......(i love how e-learning is such a leveller of learning)..... whilst both the article and my conversation partner are thinking of e-learning in a very broad sense...using an form of electronic media to present an idea...for me e-learning has become something much more than a slop and drop of an old lesson plan.....I value it's contribution, and I want to see that it has changed behaviour and (for me) had an impact of patient care delivery. And that's what neither of these have...they are one how does this fit with evaluation? Well, it's back to the old learning do you measure that they have been achieved. What should you see, do you intend that you should see as a result of student engagement......The difference between 'doing' e-learning and real e-learning is indeed evaluation. Thanks Bron. Nice article!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Technology rocks! (when it works)

Feeling a lot like Friday on a Monday.....!
We had 3 courses in today and the laptops weren't playing at all!! If anythign could send me screeching faster toward e-learning it would be a day like today: when you spend more time trying to get a presentation/network connection for your resources going than actually getting participants to engage with the material....

Anyway, technology rocks in major way when it of the things I have been exploring is itunes. I read in one of the (on-line) American nursing journals about some of the sites that have some real 'value addedness' from the perspective that there were eminent professors podcasting their lectures...... And here i was thinking itunes was about building your music collection! Well, I am a fan: I did indeed find some very suitable material for my teaching practise and whatsmore, found a whole bunch of stuff related to e-learning. I have listened to 4 podcasts so far. One of them was from Dr Michael Allen and was in parts offering a critique about ADDIE (which I will post on the group website after the introductions week). The other 3 were from the UK about the big poject in central south NHS and national e-learning initiatives. I got a a great deal out of these........why?

Well interestingly they are much farther on in terms of their e-learning development for nursing and health. They are going to have a national library of knowledge objects (as opposed to a LOR). This will give users the opportunity to harvest a range of products related to their search topic which will include e-learning and learning objects as well as articles, URLs etc.... Sounds great! The other thing I got from the lectures was very reassuring. Their experience with consumers of elearning is that in nursing and some allied healthcare professional groups at least, they know that in a continuing professional development (CPD) sense learners prefer blended approaches. This fits nicely with my earlier concern that I need to be able to evaluate behavioural change as a result of the e-learning course/resource. I am taking behaviour here to mean a psychomotor, observable skill. One of the talkers made a great point of reminding me that we are not filling empty vessels at the level of CPD. What these learners value of themselves is their wealth of knowledge and experience. Our role as e-teachers then, is to offer material that adds on to this. Subsequently, they are interested to demonstrate in practice what they have learned. They also discussed the nature of quality monitoring in e-learning. It seems that evaluation is an international hot topic!!

The other thing I think I need to do on reflection, is learn how to reference a podcast....and remember who I am listening to!! MMMMMMMMMM

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I love Friday

Hello again!
I love Fridays because.......I get to play with moodle for most of the day. I know now what my father meant when he said work should be like a hobby!! It was practically 3pm before I came up for air!!

Anyway, as I think I said on the email group, I am happily enagaed in a moodle sandpit at present. Today, I have been trying to transfer a face to face session into moodle. Well, it all works terribly well......until......the visual and verbal cues I would use to gauge understanding ina F2F environment aren't there. I can certainly say that my question in my previous blog was a goodie. How do you know they know do you evaluate that? Today, I tried my hand at a few quiz questions by way of trying to get at that. As many of you will know there are some great facilities on moodle for writing these. Though I managed 5, I would certainly not claim that they are the best of ....! But what I want to know that the particpants understand the assessment tool (subject of the 'course') meaures level of risk, and in no way claims to be a predictor that the event will occur. On reflection, the best questions were the matched pairs because I could be tricky and write alternates for the usual assumptions that people make. My own assumption here is that if the learning has been effective, the scores ought to be high on this particular question. but how guessable are they......So to trial them next week and see what the report charts show.

Hope you are all going well

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

all wired up!!

Well finally.........I have braodband at home!!

I downloaded skype last night and talked with my parents....very OMG! I haven't seen them for 2 years!. My daughter (aged 6) took to it like a duck to water, tho my son (3) was a little more reserved. sadly they didn't get to see us as the webcam I bought ages ago has been put somewhere 'safe'......real safe.....The e-toys are even cooler whent hey run properly..

Anyway, what am I looking for in the course....

A lot of what I do from an education perspective has implications in a practical sense. Students must turn what they learn into a process, a procedure a way of critically thinking about their patients and/or the circumstances of the admission, but most of all into DOING. So, whilst I can see that e-learning does indeed work for me (but I am a lover of information and finding stuff out) might that shape up for those nurses who aren't motivated in the same way I am and how do I know that application to doing has been done..... So I am looking forward to the opportunity to explore how this might pan out. Important as it is when I need also to be able to demonstrate the value of 'new' technology versus the old for the crusties on the exec!!

Also return on investment is something that interests me......we have long struggled in nursing to clearly articulate and demonstrate the value of education although everyone 'knows' it works. The CFO will ask me to demonstrate this in the longer term LMS project, so I am looking forward to enagaing around that too.....

So that's me at the moment!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The first real life blog of my life.....
That was suprisingly painless....well far more painless than the whole process of getting broadband at home has been....If I said that it had taken at least 4 would think I was playing eh? But no......and today, the router was OUT OF STOCK!!!! you remember your days of dial up and how slow it is....I am doing most things at work, but social networking sites are banned (at presnt), so there are some things I can't do here.....right now to post......