UCD TEACHING AND LEARNING

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1 UCD TEACHING AND LEARNING/ RESOURCES E-Learning Planning Your Module Design for On-line or Blended Modules Authors: Geraldine O Neill & Aine Galvin Date: 30 th July

2 1. Introduction Before you go into Blackboard (Bb), carefully plan your module s teaching, learning and assessment activities to allow for an engaging and active learning experience. In the design of the learning environment, it is recommended that you should consider the teaching and learning principles. See also Chickering & Gamson s principles (1991) tm Have a listen to the informative video presented by Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) (2013b) titled Planning your on- line class. This resource considers what you should put on line It examines the importance of considering pedagogy before technology; constructively aligning assessment with learning outcomes; and the integration of digital literacy skills. It also offers some useful strategies for deciding which components are better suited to an online learning environment. to- teach- online/ltto- episodes?view=video&video=219. The ALTC also highlight some of the key considerations developed by UNSW when planning, in particular, for the Blended Learning Environment (see Table 1) Table 1: Strategies for Planning Blended Learning - Be careful not to double up on work for both teacher and students. Divide learning activities or content best suited to either online or face- to- face environments carefully, otherwise you may create a duplicate of the class in both online and face- to- face formats - Don t get carried away with the numerous opportunities that technology offers. Ensure that the online component remains relevant to learning and not distracting gimmicks - students will see through this very quickly. Establish what it is you want students to learn, and whether an online component is likely to enhance or improve this experience. - Establish what activities would benefit from or would be better suited to technology. Move these to the online context and then enrich the key activities that benefit from a face- to- face environment. - Start slowly. Introduce one online component to your blended class or program; assess and evaluate its merits at the end of the semester; adjust accordingly what you have learnt; and then gradually add more online components or more depth to the existing component if it is required - Clearly explain to students and other teaching staff why you are introducing an online component. Outline what you hope to achieve, and what the benefits might be for them. Students will usually be more willing to try new

3 methods of learning when they can see the point, and it will help to engender an environment of cooperation and communication between students and their teacher SEE UNSW, COFA.ON- LINE. (2013) LEARNING TO TEACH ONLINE pdf/planning_class_ltto.pdf 3

4 Learning Through Summary Some Technologies (Laurillard, 2012) Acquisition Inquiry Practice In this form of learning students can be quite passive as they are primarily learning through reading or listening. However, this can be made more active if these resources are designed into activities This form of learning requires students to search out, critique and use resources from different locations. It requires more active student learning. For example, it follows a process of brainstorming, information gathering (on- line or other) and then critical group discussion (or presentation). In this form of learning students have to apply what they have learned into a given context in their discipline. Screencasts: Powerpoint with audio; Articulate Storyline Adobe presenter; Camtasia ; Adobe Captivate Podcasts: Audacity ; You- tube Other - Digital Learning Repository resources - Lecture Capture : Echo Clickers (in class) - SPSS - Excel - ArcGIS - Mind Genius (Mind mapping software for Education) On- line Discussion Mobile technologies UCD Library Databases and related software - Second Life - Allocated roles in Wikis, Group Discussions - Simulations Role play Virtual labs It has often been described as experiential learning, or learning by doing. 4

5 Production Discussion Collaboration In this form of learning, students are motivated to learn by having to produce an artifact. The traditional essay is one example but different software packages allow for great creativity in this area. This form of learning requires students to interact with each other on- line to discuss issues. This can be done synchronously (web- conferencing) or as in most cases asynchronously (discussion forums) This form of learning requires student to collaborate to produce an artifact. The process of the collaboration is also very important. Uploading assignments, i.e. essays, designs, assignments, photos Production of concept maps,.. Production of posters, submitted on- line - Mahara: Production of e- portfolios. Muvizu: Production of animations Asynchronous discussions: Bb Discussion Groups Synchronous discussion: Bb Virtual Classrooms. Bb Collaborate: web- conferencing tools, Bb Wikis Sparkplus: On- line peer and self assessment Blackboard Collaborate (or alternative) 2. Selecting the relevant technologies As for all module design processes, consider the needs of your student group and the context of their learning. Based on this, decide what are the key task/learning that you hope your students should achieve in this module. It is then that you should consider what technologies are most suitable to supporting this. Table 2 sets out some current technologies (i.e. May 2013). This table is by no means full list of available options. Table 2.Types of Learning and Conventional and Digital Learning Technologies Adapted from Laurillard, Creating Themes/Units In order to reduce information overload on- line, first organize your module s content into themes/concepts/units as is appropriate to your subject (as in Module Design Pre- Planning Template, see appendix 1). In your main UCD Teaching/Learning/Assessment 5

6 blackboard button, i.e. the Learning Materials, build folders under these themes. Avoid too many folders. For example, see Figure 1. Figure 1 Organise by Themes/Topics/Concepts. 4. Integrating the teaching and learning activities Littlejohn and Pegler (2007) describe that there are four types of approaches to integrating your teaching and learning that could be appropriate for different types of on- line learning contexts: The space blend: virtual and/or physical The time blend: for example synchronous versus asynchronous The media blend: the types of tools and resources The activity blend: the organisation of the different activities and resources. The efficiency of the module from both yours and the students time is very important. In your initial module design consider the balance in students time between: what they are required to study (autonomous student learning); tasks they are prescribed to do themselves in Bb or out- of- class (specified student learning tasks, including assessment activities); and what is addressed in the face- to- face or on- line monitored contact hours (lectures/labs/tutorials/on- line group discussions). Collectively they should add to the equivalent of approx. 110 student effort hours for a 5 ECT credit module (Figure 2) Consider the added value of the on- line environment for student- activity and how this may supplement or replace some in- class face- to- face. The supplemental model retains the basic structure of the traditional course and a) supplements lectures and textbooks with technology- based, out- of- class activities, or b) also changes what goes on in the class by creating an active learning environment within a large lecture hall setting. (NCAT, 2013) 6

7 The replacement model reduces the number of in- class meetings and a) replaces some in- class time with out- of- class, online, interactive learning activities, or b) also makes significant changes in remaining in- class meetings. (NCAT, 2013) For example, the use of on- line podcast, screencasts (i.e. Articulate) can replace or reduce face- to- face lectures. When used prior to a more interactive face- to- face session, they have been described as a flip class- room. ( the- classroom/) Calculate the expected student- effort hours of any on- line tasks for the students (i.e. later you will need to communicate this to students) Figure 2: Student Effort Hours in Blended Learning (same hours, different weightings) As Bb allows students to engage with the materials before, during and after class, consider the best sequence for when and how students might do this, i.e. develop a plan to wrap (Figure 3) the blend of content, activities and resources (Fink, 2003, 2004; Littlejohn & Pegler, 2007) Figure 3. Blended Learning: The wrap around. 7

8 5. Documenting your plans There have been different models used on how to document e- learning designs. In common in the majority of these frameworks are that people engage in activities with resources. Littlejohn and Pegler (2007) suggest some frameworks. The first of these is a lesson plan approach to documentation and includes documentation on: time; mode; staff role; student role; resources and feedback and assessment. Appendix 1 gives an example of this approach to documentation. The lesson plan has been useful to document often. Another framework is the learning design sequence map (See Figure 4). This approach visually highlights the sequence of the learning and teaching perspectives, which can be either linear or iterative non- sequential tasks (Littlejohn and Pegler, 2007). One very commonly used approach is that developed by Oliver et al (2002) and used by the Australia Universities Teaching Committee (AUTC). It visually sets out the learning activities (sometimes described as learning tasks ), the learning resources and the learning supports. AUTC (2013, p1) describe these as: Representing learning activities: The learning activities are represented by a series of rectangles, arranged vertically. These activities represent the learner s journey. Each rectangle has a description of what the learners are required to do or produce. Activities that are assessable are distinguished with an asterisk (*). Representing learning resources: Learning resources are represented by triangles to the left of the activity sequence. An arrow from a resource (triangle) to an activity (square) indicates that resources are available to the student when doing the activity. An arrow from an activity (square) to a 8

9 resource (triangle) indicates that a resource is produced during the activity and becomes a resource for others to use later. Representing learning supports: The learning supports are represented by circles to the right of the activity sequence. An arrow from a circle to a square indicates that support strategies are being used to assist the students in their learning. These can be overlapping categories and they appear to be differently interpreted in the literature, for example the lecture can be seen as a resource (as in Figure 4) or as an activity that the student needs to attend and engage in. Figure 4 learning design sequence map (one example) 6. Inclusive Learning Principles (Universal Design) The on- line environment should be inclusive of all learners (Universal Design) To assist in the design of your Blackboard environment, the UCD Access Office have developed a summary of some these considerations see: For more on authoring screen content, see also 9

10 - Authoring Guidelines for On Screen Content (Jennings, 2012c) 7. Copyright Guidelines In designing your module, ensure that you are aware and adhere to the guidelines on copyright. See a resource on this issue - Copyright and E- Learning (Jennings, 2012d) References AUTC (2013) - Guidelines to construct a Learning Design Sequence, uence.pdf Biggs, J., Tang, C (2011) Teaching for Quality Learning: What the student does (4 th Ed). SRHE: Berkshire. Fink, L. D. (2003). Creating significant learning experiences: An integrated approach to designing college courses. San Francisco: Jossey- Bass. Fink, L.D. (2004), A Self- Directed Guide to Designing Courses for Significant Learning, Chickering, A.W., Gamson, Z.F. (1991). Applying the Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education. New Directions for Teaching and Learning. 47, Fall, San Francisco: Jossey- Bass Inc. see also tm Laurillard, D (2012) Teaching as Design Science: Building Pedagogical Patterns for Learning and Technology. London: Routledge. Littlejohn, A., & Pegler, C. (2007) Documenting e- learning blends, In, Preparing for Blended E- Learning New York: Routledge. Mayer, R.E, Moreno, R (2003). Nine Ways to Reduce Cognitive Load in Multimedia Learning Educational Psychologist, 38(1), Oliver, R. (1999). Exploring strategies for on- line teaching and learning. Distance Education, 20(2), Oliver, R. (2001). Seeking best practice in online learning: Flexible Learning Toolboxes in the Australian VET sector. Australian Journal of Educational Technology, 17(2),

11 Oliver, R. & Herrington, J. (2001). Teaching and learning online: A beginner s guide to e- learning and e- teaching in higher education. Edith Cowan University: Western Australia. Sharma, P, Hannafin, M.J. (2007) Scaffolding in Technology- Enhanced Learning Environments Interactive Learning Environments, 15, 1, UCD IT Services Blackboard TM Support (2012) UCD Teaching & Learning s (2012) E- Learning web- page: learning 11

12 Time Appendix 1. Lesson Plan: Planning the Blend of Teaching, learning and assessment activities. (adapted from Littlejohn & Pegler, 2007) Mode (On-line, In-class (F2F), Out-ofclass) Student Role (Task to do, e.g. read, do MCQ, meet other student group..) Staff Role (e.g. lecture, monitor online discussion, set up groups online, Resources (content and other) Resources (services /courseware/ technology) Feedback and Assessment Go to for a word version of the lesson plan. 12

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