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A Different Kind of E-Learning

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A short introduction of the Wikiwersity-based open course model I use for my e-courses (May 18, 2018)

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A Different Kind of E-Learning

  1. 1. A different kind of e-learning KAIDO KIKKAS associate professor IT College, TUT kaido@itcollege.ee 18.05.2018
  2. 2. For introduction: the mighty technology  Things that earlier required ‘rocket science’ and a lot of money, are now available to everyone. Examples: − Today’s home computer vs top tech 40 years ago − Today’s smartphones vs old-time supercomputers − Social media (blogs, wikis, social networks) vs traditional media − Music or video/movie studio at home vs earlier dedicated facilities  BOTTOM LINE: people can do great things if they do not have to face stupid obstacles from business, government and antiquated legislation
  3. 3. A timeline of technology-assisted learning  Up to the 80s: contact learning or pre-Internet tech measures (TV, radio, cassettes, videotapes etc)  80s and early 90s: computer-based learning (computers as a glorified, interactive VCR - CD-ROMs, multimedia, educational software  Later 90s: e-learning 1.0 – e-mail, Web (1.0), scripts and applets  First years of 00s: e-learning 2.0 – learning management systems (WebCT/Blackboard, Ilias, Moodle)  10s: e-learning 3.0 – Web 2.0 and distributed learning environments, MOOCs
  4. 4. Wikiversity  A project under Wikimedia Commons (probaby the most common of those is Wikipedia)  Similarly to Wikipedia, all content is distributed under free licenses, mostly − Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike − GNU Free Documentation License
  5. 5. Components of the course  Main page at Wikiversity (the central hub):  Short intro and main data (credits, supervisor etc)  Detailed guide for the course  Participant list  Team list (if used)  Exam registration (if using traditional exam)  Link to forum  Plus outside resources:  Forum (Nabble.com; monitored over RSS)  Team wikis  Personal blogs (monitored over RSS)  Skype and/or e-mail
  6. 6. Weekly workflow  Read the ’lecture’ at Wikiversity  Weekly blogging tasks  Wiki-based team paper (4-5 people)  Reviewing another team’s work (blogged)  Topical discussions in forum  In some courses: weekly text chat (approx. 1 hour, part consulting, part informal discussion of weekly topics)
  7. 7. Grading the works  Grades are often considered private information  How to keep them private in an open course?  Options include ● Using the hosting institution study information system (feasible if no/little outsiders) ● Public grade table, password protected (easy to do with Excel or LibreOffice Calc) ● Public grade table, coded (numbers or pseudonyms) ● On-demand: everyone can ask over e-mail, Skype etc (feasible in smaller courses)
  8. 8. Three levels of participation  For credits, formal enrolment – need to register through the faculty (similarly to other courses)  For credits, from outside – need to register through the complementary learning/training faculty  Free listeners, want just the information rather than credits – free to come and go as they please
  9. 9. Typical question: why teach outsiders?  For-credit students are sponsored by state, the course load increase gets formally recognized (and paid)  Free listeners (in sensible amounts) act as valuable marketers of the course – provided that the content is good. Workload increase can be optimized (e.g. more stress on peer reviews etc)  The course type needs careful planning of tasks and structure, so that 10 x increase in students does not mean 10 x increase of workload  Example: continuous points-gathering (with some choice) and basing the grade on the final sum rather than doing a traditional exam
  10. 10. What is different  Fits well for more narrative type of courses  Analytical rather than purely fact-oriented tasks (analyze, describe, give examples, compare...). Means that  Different solutions can be equally valid  Good old cheating does not work well, especially with more experienced supervisor
  11. 11. Kaido Kikkas Associate professor IT College, TUT kaido@itcollege.ee https://www.slideshare.net/UncleOwl

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