Session 10: Wrapping Up

Session 10 

1. Identify five key concepts or themes related to eLearning Design and Development and explain what you know about each.

1) Student-Content Interaction, Student-Instructor Interaction, & Student-Student Interaction: This is important because interactions allow the students to receive and process the information the instructor has given, also this helps the instructor give and receive feedback about the material. The designer of the course should be able to find a common ground between all of the interactions so it can facilitate the instruction. 

2) Absorb, Do, Connect Activities: Absorb activities inform and inspire. Absorb activities enable motivated learners to obtain crucial, up-to-date information they need to do their jobs or to further their learning. In absorb activities learners read, listen, and watch. These activities may sound passive, but they can be an active component of learning.

3) The important of Media Selection and Testing: It is very important to select media that will enhance the learning activity of the learners. A designer should consider the most up-to-date media as it would provide a better learning to the learners. Testing should be done because it will let the designer know whether the material and course is working.

4) Games and Simulations: Games and simulations are well suited to the online environment. Students at a distance have the ability to practice and develop skills through highly engaging activities. Learning is generally viewed as a process of developing connections (new to old). A game or simulation heightens the capacity to make these connections by making a by-product of completing a challenging activity.

5) ADA: In order for a course to be successful, we need to be willing to make accommodation for every learner. We need to establish a disability and a need, the course needs to accommodate based on the disability so every learner has the chance/given the opportunity to learn.

2. Speculate on the future of eLearning and what your role in that future might be. 

eLearning like technology, it’s changing and will continue to change the way we communicate with learners, the way we design courses, how we learn and teach. eLearning is being used more and more as part of blended learning solutions, in particular in the form of online virtual classrooms. We have plenty of current eLearning trends which are: mobile learning, gamification and MOOC’s. Mobile learning is a big thing today, as we are using both smart phones and tablets to deliver a whole range of learning content. Gamification is the key element and principle of online games which is taken and used to provide supposedly meaningful learning experiences.

I believe my future role in eLearning will be to be able to adapt and find news to meet changing times in eLearning. I will try to simply incorporate different tools to their current eLearning training strategy, I will understand and embrace the meaning and implications of these changes in the eLearning development process. This way i will be bring the best experience to my learners.

3. Revise the eLearning development template/instructional design process you developed earlier for yourself. Be sure to:

a) List all of the roles of people who will be involved in the typical development.

The course my team and I had designed earlier will involve the roles of the instructor, designer and students. 

b) Identify your role.

My role would be the designer.

c) Explain the type of courses or other eLearning development the template is for (higher education course, corporate training etc.)

The course will be a fully online history class for 50 undergraduate students to learn major events and themes of history from post WWII to present times.

d) Provide a clear label for all included elements.

Student-Content Interaction, Student-Instructor Interaction, & Student-Student Interaction, course structure, and learning objectives. 

e) Provide a clear description of each included element.

Interactions: All of the three types of interactions will be used to have a better developed course.

course structure: We decided to develop 5 learning modules, where we would take 2 weeks explaining the important even during that time. Information will be presented through podcasts, PDF notes and documentaries. For evaluation of what the students have learned thus far, they will be given an specific task where they would need to have discussions with their peers to discuss the material learned. Also, at the end of the term they will need to write an essay explaining what they’ve learned.

Learning objectives: Each learning module will have a clear learning objective that will let the learners know what they will learn each week.

f) Provide a narrative explaining how the template would be used.

The template/analysis plan will be used to help the designer create a course that will meet all of the requirements asked by the instructor and to provide clear materials of what we intend to teach. This will also help test the material and provide feedback to determine whether our objectives are being met.

References:

Horton, W. (2011). e-Learning by Design, 2 edition. Pfeiffer. ISBN-13: 978-0470900024

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ETEC 541:Session 9: Other Online Learning Environments

Session 9 

1. Define the terms “Game” and “Simulation” as they relate to eLearning.

Games can be applied to interactive material such as eLearning, it has been discussed that games can be used in eLearning to engage the learners/users. Since the primary reason to apply gamification to eLearning is to engage learners, the games have been proven to be engaging. Games also allows for the learner to test themselves and get the results as to what was tested. As for simulation, this allows us to interact with a physical model or abstract process. Simulations are particularly adept at providing engaging, authentic experiences, to address the specific needs of the target audience. In a simulation, the learner will be able to decide and act. It all ties together because the designers will often include game elements within the simulation to take adverting of their inherent cognitive and motivational benefits.

2. What are the key characteristics of a Simulation?

Key characteristics of a simulation are the learners can decide and act, the learning results come from an actual practice and feedback and the simulation is useful for educating learners.

3. What are some of the strengths or advantages of Games and Simulations in eLearning?

Some of the strengths and advantages of Games and Simulations in eLearning are repetition, games are played over and over again for a higher score, it is a distributed practice which is a good learning technique and well designed games naturally embody that concept. Another adverting is problem solving, you can’t get to the next level in a game if you can’t solve the problem. Adding so, games provide immediate feedback unlike a test or a quiz which requires time for an instructor to grade and return. As for a well designed simulation, the learner is put into a realistic situation and they must act as they would in the actual situation. It has the opportunity to be more realistic than a lecture because of the visual cues.

4. What are some of the weaknesses or disadvantages of Games and Simulations in eLearning?

Some of the weaknesses or disadvantages of Games and Simulations in eLearning are that if there’s a failure to provide realism in the game or simulation can not be a good thing for students. Also, games and simulations do require an excellent internet access. Also, the cost may be a disadvantage. The games should always have a clear context and the problems will need to be solvable.

5. Explain the term, “Gamification” and explain how this concept might apply to eLearning.

Gamification is the use of a game thinking and game mechanics in non-game contexts to engage users in solving problems and increase users’ contributions. In the field of eLearning, Gamification is used to promote the commitment of students to the learning process. It will work as a rewarding behavior and it’s like a dopamine release in the brain. This concept shows that games are very effective in increasing levels of interaction and motivational in learning, which in turn help to shape knowledge and optimize the learning process. 

6. Pick a topic and describe a game or a simulation or gamification concept that would be effective.

My topic would focus on Spanish and it would be about an entry level to learning greetings. I would create a simulation where the student is able to have an interactive conversation with the computer (someone would be answering to their greetings). The game would provide the learner with different hints and different scenarios where they would use the greetings they’ve learned and they would be able to use it as they would in a live conversation. This simulation would test the learners understanding of how to start a conversation using Spanish greetings and will allow them to communicate in a Spanish speaking area.

References:

Horton, W. (2012). E-Learning by Design.

ETEC 541: Session 8, Develop – Testing – Best Practice

Session 8

1. List the two levels of testing as outlined in the presentation and discuss each one in turn. Then describe the types of testing activities for each level of testing.

The two levels of testing are the point of media creation and media fidelity. Testing is done to ensure the fidelity of the media is used to present material and to ensure that the material presented leads to the desired student outcomes.

The point of media creation is to ensure that the media that has been produced is complete and of an acceptable quality. This testing is often accomplished by the creator of the media. The second level of media fidelity testing is more complex and it involves testing the media as close its release form. In this testing, someone reviews the materials as they will be situated when the consumer of those materials uses them. They will make sure the navigation works well. They will also check HTML codes, CSS coding and ADA compliance.

2. What is ADA and how does it apply to the design and development of eLearning materials?

ADA stands for Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. The ADA is a wide-ranging civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on disability. It affords similar protections against discrimination to Americans with disabilities as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which made discrimination based on race, religion, sex, and other characteristics illegal. The ADA also requires covered employees to provide reasonable accommodations to employees with disabilities, and imposes accessibility requires on public accommodations. 

ADA is important to the design and development in eLearning because this accessibility should take part of the creation of the instructional design product. The designer should always take into considerations some students might need certain accommodations, and they should be able to create products that adhere to these certain necessities. Students will have a better learning experience if all of their needs have been met.

3. What is your institutions (You may use CSUSB’s) policy towards ADA and eLearning? Explain what this means in practical terms and what you think the strengths and weaknesses of the policy.

CSUSB’s policy towards ADA is as follows:

CSUSB has a responsibility to comply with ADA regulations for faculty, staff, students and visitors. This responsibility takes the form of reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities as well as facility access for persons with disabilities.

Essentially, “ADA-compliant” and “accessible” mean that any course materials you distribute to your students (whether in-class or online), and which are essential to the student’s success in class, must be usable by all students in your class, regardless of ability.

What our policy means is that all forms of instruction (whether will it be in classrooms or online) should be accessible to everyone regardless of the nature of their disability. One of the weakness of the ADA for our campus is that it has not been updated. This might be difficult for the instructors to ensure that all of the material in the course is ADA compliant. The strength of having such policy is that everyone will receive the same instruction as everyone in the class.

4. Revisit the 11 instructional design steps presented in chapter 1 of the text (Design Quickly and Reliably).* Revise this 11 step system using what you now know about development and testing. Try to create your own instructional design process/template that you might actually use. Briefly explain your modifications. 

*11 step instructional design process as presented in the text:

Identify your underlying goal

Analyze learners’ needs and abilities (Add an analysis of content and instructor needs/abilities/preferences.)

Identify what to teach

Set learning objectives

Identify prerequisites

Pick the approach to meet each objective

Decide the teaching sequence of your objectives

Create objects to accomplish objectives

Create tests (Add other methods to determine whether or not objectives are met as appropriate.)

Select learning activities

Choose Media (Add a discussion of activity structures and interactions.)

Modified:

After revising the 11 steps of instructional design that were presented in chapter 1 I have decided to make some modifications. As an online course instructor, I would make sure I know who my audience is so I can better facilitate the learning of all of them. Knowing whether any of the students need special accommodations is extremely important, as we learned in this session. If we don’t meet every students’ needs, we will see that some might struggle with the material presented.

Steps:

Identify your underlying objective

Analyze learners’ needs and abilities (Add an analysis of content and instructor needs/abilities/preferences.)- For an online instruction, I will make sure I know all of my learners needs, I will make sure I test all of my instruction materials so it could meet everyone’s learning needs.

Identify what to teach

Set learning objectives

*there will be no prerequisites* this part will be taken from the steps, as my course will not require any.

Pick the approach to meet each objective- If there are any of accommodations, I will pick an approach that best fits everyone.

Decide the teaching sequence of your objectives

Create objects to accomplish objectives

Create tests (Add other methods to determine whether or not objectives are met as appropriate.)-

Select learning activities

Choose Media (Add a discussion of activity structures and interactions.)

Session 7: Development, Media Choices and Considerations

1. Why is media selection important in eLearning?

Media selection is important in eLearning because is the means of communicating and transferring a learning concept or objective to another individual. Media selection is also important because it is useful for student-to-student interactions and for student-instructor interaction through directed discussions and questions.

2. Define “new media”?

A major concept of new media is ease of sharing, but more than that, is the ability for others to use, reuse, link to and comment upon shared works. New media also refers to the content available on demand through the internet, accessible on any digital device, usually containing interactive user feedback and creative participation.

3. Choose a “new media” and explain it’s strengths and weaknesses for supporting eLearning.

There are plenty of “new media” nowadays, the most well known would be YouTube. This tool permits users to upload videos and search for them as well, and in some, comment on the videos. It’s strengths is that the comment feature makes YouTube a Web 2.0 application in that is has the power of social networking to promote videos. YouTube also gives you the ability to create playlists that are fully customizable. You can create a playlist for each subject of your eLearning course so that learners can quickly access videos that will help them expand their comprehension or learn more about the topic (easier for asynchronous courses).It can also gives eLearning professionals the power to create videos that learners can access even after the eLearning course has ended as reference tools. Adding so, by having the learners make their own YouTube videos to improve knowledge retention, it also allows them to build upon their design skills and creativity. However, one of the weaknesses for supporting eLearning is that many of its host upload videos that are inappropriate material and questionable for in classroom utility. 

4. Explain the term “Mobile Learning” and discuss the importance of “Mobile Learning in the current eLearning environment and in future eLearning environments.

Mobile learning is more than just using a mobile device to access content and communicate with others – it is about the mobility of the learner. Mobile learning can be defined as, “the processes (both personal and public) of coming to know through exploration and conversation across multiple contexts amongst people and interactive technologies.” Mobile learning is important in the current eLearning environment because it is another learning tool. In a learning context, the ultimate goal of using mobile is to improve performance in the course.

Adding so, our text explains mobile learning has two main meaning:

1) Mobile learning uses new media technologies to allow student to participate in conventional form of learning including classroom learning.

2) Real mobile learning utilizes objects, environment, experts and other students student engage the real world.

5. Explain the term “Virtual Classroom”. Describe how a “Virtual Classroom” can be used in eLearning.

A virtual classroom is an online learning environment. Virtual classroom is also a teaching and learning environment located within a computer-mediated communication system. All activities and interactions take place through the computer instead of face-to-face. The environment can be web-based and accessed through a portal or software-based. Just like in a real-world classroom, a student in a virtual classroom participates in synchronous instruction. Virtual classroom can be used in eLearning through the use of Blackboard. Students and instructor can communicate through threaded discussions and interact with one another while also receiving feedback.

6. Thinking about the class you have been designing, what are some ways you could potentially use some new media?

Some ways I could potentially use some new media are the following:

  • YouTube Videos: Share documentaries from the era being discussed in the lecture.
  • Threaded Discussions: interaction between the learners and instructor to discuss the important topics from the lecture.
  • Wikis: Questions and Answers about the different topics that are being covered.
  • Emails/Skype: Our form of communication.

References:

Sharples, M., et al. (2007) ‘Mobile Learning: Small devices, Big issues’ (in Sharples, M., et al. (eds.) Technology-Enhanced Learning, 2009, Part IV)

Horton, W. (2012). E-leaning by design, 2nd ed. San Francisco: Pfeiffer.

Session 6: Development Process Overview

Session 6 

In the previous session you worked as part of a team to conduct an analysis and develop a course plan. In the first activity below you will be asked to use what you learned from that experience to respond to some development tasks.

1. Describe an “Absorb” type activity for one of the objectives in your course plan. 

Absorb activities inform and inspire, they also enable motivated learners to obtain crucial, and to further their learning. In absorb activities learners read, listen, and watch. These activities were used in our group project. In our project activity our learners were able to read notes from the textbook as well from the instructor PDF notes. Learners were also given documentaries to watch in order to further develop their learning knowledge, and to get more information regarding the current objective in the lesson plan. Finally, learners were assigned podcasts to listen, as this explained in detailed what was happening during an specific time in American History. Each module will have podcasts, PDF notes, and documentaries, whether it will be from the assassination of John F. Kennedy to the election of President Obama. 

2. Describe a “Do” type activity for one of the objectives in your course plan.

In our course plan we have assigned a “do-type” of activity which allows the students to practice what they have learned thus far. We have assigned five writing assignments and a final term paper. For example, one of our objectives is for the students to get familiar with the assassination of John F. Kennedy, after reviewing the PDF notes, podcasts and documentary, the students will need to create a discussion describing what they have learned and why it is such an important part of our American history. This will demonstrate the knowledge obtained from all of the readings and how the students are able to apply such information to answer critical questions. 

3. Describe a “Connect” type activity for one of the objectives in your course plan.

Connect activities help students apply learning to new situations they will encounter in their future classes or personal lives. The learner will be able to gain higher-level knowledge and skills through the connect activities. One of our connect activities would be our discussions. In our discussions, learners will be able to interact with other students to help each other fully understand the objectives and lectures. Learners will also be able to answer to their peers discussions and add to their discussion, whether it would be to more information to their answer or to help them fully understand. 

4. Choose one of the above activities and discuss the process you would use to create this presentation. For this task assume that you have no additional assistance other than the instructor who would be able to write content as you describe it and perform for a recording as needed. 

If I were to take an “absorb activity” I would create this presentation by using “storytelling.” My instructor would use either a video or podcast to tell stories remembering an specific time from the course. This will be beneficial because it will grab the students attention right away and will help them remember that specific time if the instructor succeeds at telling the story. This is not only an absorb activity but also a connect activity, as the instructor is providing examples to assist students in connecting with the objectives.

5. Discuss how would your approach for the above task would be different if you were directing the development efforts of a team that included a graphic designer, a video editor and a web programmer along with all of the tools that such a team would typically use. 

My approach for the above task would be different if I had help from a graphic designer, video editor and web programmer because I would be able to create a more interesting story. With the help of a video editor I will be able to create a video instead of a podcast telling the story of that given time. I will also be able to add effects that would make the story even more realistic. And with the help of a graphic designer, I will be able to incorporate pictures of the time to make the story more realistic and engage the learners even more.

6. The text presents test types and presents a list of common types of test questions. In light of these, describe a test that would be appropriate for the class your team planned in the previous session.

A test that would be appropriate for the class my team and I planned would be a multiple choice, True/False, and open ended questions. Multiple choice would give me an idea if the students have been following their reading assignments, or if they have been paying attention to the PDF notes and podcasts, as the questions will be taken from such. As for the True/False questions, in history classes we have encounter many “that might be true but it can’t be true” moments, this will be demonstrate if the learners can distinguish from what it is real to what is not. As for the open ended questions, this will open a new opportunity for the learners to write what they have learned from the course. This will demonstrate the knowledge the student has gained from all of the readings, discussions, podcasts, notes and documentaries. An open-ended question is designed to encourage a full, meaningful answer using the subject’s own knowledge and/or feelings.  

I am working with John & Michelle on this project and my duties were the following:

Create objects to accomplish objectives

As discussed with our team members, our class will include podcast with lecture notes where we will provide notes regarding what the lecture contained that day. In order for the students to accomplish objectives we will create open ended questions where students will collaborate together and use the knowledge from previous lectures to answer the question. Adding so, students will be assigned to complete different assignments such as watching documentary films and having a discussion post with their classmates. This will help us accomplish our objectives by using modules that include podcasts, documentaries and discussions to help students remember the important information in our history class.

•Create tests (Add other methods to determine whether or not objectives are met as appropriate.)

As a group we have decided not to have midterms or a final for our class. Instead, we have broken down our class into ten modules where one week is a podcast lecture with lecture notes and the secondary week will be a showing of a documentary film with a discussion post followed shortly. Adding so, because we won’t have tests to determine whether or not objectives are being met appropriately, we will have five blog posts and a final paper where students knowledge of the material will be evaluated and from there full points will be given. Students will be asked to reference lecture notes and documentaries, this will determine if students have been learning from the materials.

•Select learning activities

Learning activities will consist of readings, documentary videos, YouTube clips, discussion board, teacher feedback and podcast. With the learning activities mentioned above, students will be able to interact with their fellow classmates and be able to share what they all have learned thus far. Students will be advised to read prior each session, this way students are aware of what the instructor is talking about in their podcasts. With the help of podcast and lecture notes, students will be able to compare their readings and notes and be able to create a discussion with their peers. Also, with the help of documentary videos, students will be able to relate the material being taught and see how it was mold in the real-world.

•Choose Media (Add a discussion of activity structures and interactions.)

The media we will use will be based on the mode of transmission since it is an online class we will focus on an online presentation. All of which will include as mentioned above; podcasts, lecture notes PDF, discussion board, documentaries, YouTube clips and wiki’s.

One of our lecture and assignments will be regarding John F. Kennedy’s presidency and assassination. We will brainstorm a list of thoughts about John F. Kennedy, while students will recall and discuss elements of contemporary collective memory while reconstructing preexisting knowledge about JFK and the assassination. In the discussion, students will form opinions on the importance of JFK’s assassination in American history.

The instructor will have a podcast with information about JFK’s presidency and assassination, where the instructor will also provide a handout with the lesson. The students will later be asked to watch a documentary where a discussion will be later started. This way students will interact with each other by forming different ideas and thoughts.

ETEC 541- Module 4: Kimberly De Leon

Session 4

Instructional Design For Online Learning

In this set of activities you will be working either individually or in a small team of your choice to conduct an analysis for developing an online class. This will be a quasi-simulation in which you will develop a course plan using the 11 instructional design steps presented in chapter 1 of the text (Design Quickly and Reliably).*

Process:

  1. Decide if you will work individually or in a team.

I will be in a team with John and Michelle.

  1. If in a team it is up to you to put your team together and then work together to choose a course content area to work in and choose a primary contact person. This is the person who is responsible for the final aggregation of all documents and making sure they are presented to the instructor.

John will be our main contact and who will be in contact with the instructor.

  1. Attend the synchronous planning session with the instructor via Skype. At least 1 person (primary contact) from each group must attend the session. The purpose of this session is to further explain the process, expectations and to answer questions. Please note that if there are too many people for one Skype call we will do more than one.
  2. With your group develop a list of topics and questions to be addressed in a Skype meeting. This list of topics and questions is due at the end of this week (sent via email from the primary contact to the instructor).
  3. Each individual member of the team will make a blog post this week discussing their role in the group project and their thoughts on the instructional design process. If you are working alone you are responsible for making a blog post to discuss your process thus far.

My duty is: 

4-Set learning objectives- 

  • Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge of key historical facts, values, and ideas that have shaped civilizations throughout history.
  • Students will have good knowledge and problem-solving skills in analyzing contemporary and historical events.

5- Identify prerequisites-

In our course, students should have taken at one seminar course focused on American History. This is important so the students are have some background knowledge and do not feel overwhelmed with the information that will be provided. 

6- Pick the approach to meet each objective-

With history, it is better to if we take a constructivist approach. As our goal is for our students to engage as active learners constructing their own knowledge and beliefs within our course. In our course, we will challenge our students to explore their existing knowledge while exposing them to knew knowledge and ideas. Adding so, it is our best approach because it will a fully online course, where students will be assigned tasks that will encourage the learners to apply their emerging learnings to the task. 

By following the 11 step instructional design process it was easier to create a well developed History course. It provided us guidance as to where to start or where to look for when it came to our weak spots. The steps also helped us analyzed what best approach to take towards our students. 

Session 3- Interactions: ETEC 541

Session 3 

A. Download the interactionsmatrix.doc file. Note that this is a table listing the three types of interactions at the top, with some sample activities on the left. Place an X in the cells to indicate which activities correspond to which interactions. Add some additional activities of your own and mark the cells appropriate to the types of interactions each represents.

Interaction Matrix

Activities Learner-Content Learner-Instructor Learner-Learner
Video Presentation           X
Lecture           X
Chat            X                X
Discussion            X                 X
Skype             X                  X
Blog              X                  X
Podcast           X
Email              X                  X

B. Discuss of the types of interactions that are most often used in the content area for which you expect to design instruction. Be sure to explain the content area, the types of students and types of objectives with which you will be working.

The Spanish course I wish to design is an introductory course for college freshman where students will learn the basics that will help them carry a small conversation in Spanish. The students will learn from lectures, presentations, projects, discussions, quizzes, and readings. In this course, my lectures will include different ways students can start a conversation with a fellow student, they will also include an introduction to the different nouns, verbs & greetings. The type of learner-content interaction I will use includes discussions, blogs, projects (story book) and quizzes. For discussions, after each lecture we will form a group where students will have the opportunity to talk to other students regarding what they have learned, with every conversation being in Spanish. Adding so, after each chapter covered in class, we will have small projects where they will be able to use different technology tools suchs as YouTube, Podcasts and blogs to show their progress. By the end of the course, a quiz/test will be provided to evaluate the students weakness and strenght, this will determine where I can improve the course materials/objectives to better benefit the students.

C. Chapters 2, 3 and 4 of the Horton text discuss three categories of activities: Absorb, Do, and Connect. After reading these chapters you are to locate one or more online classes and identify one Absorb, one Do and one Connect activity. Present your findings using this format:

URL: http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/global-studies-and-languages/21f-701-spanish-i-fall-2003/

Course Content: Course will allow students to learn authentic Spanish and experience its cultural diversity. Course deals with all basic language skills; aural comprehension, speaking, reading, and writing.

Intended Students/Probable Student Characteristics: Undergraduate/Graduate students. 

Instructor Characteristics: Margarita Ribas Groeger is a Senior Lecturer in Spanish, and directs the Spanish Language program at MIT, where she has taught all levels of language classes since 1994. 

Identify the Type of Activity: Absorb – Do – Connect: The central component of the text and workbook is a series of 52 half-hour video episodes (26 videos are viewed in Spanish I and the rest in Spanish II). There will also be an audio-only program integrated with the text and workbook).

Identify and Discuss the Interactions in the Activity: In the classroom there will be a variety of activities and exercises, which will include talking in Spanish, practicing pronunciation and grammar, and interacting with classmates in pairs and small groups. Students wil be able to speak Spanish in order to learn to speak Spanish. 

Session 2: Content, Instructor and Student Characteristics

Session 2

1. Scenarios

To address these scenarios, identify the major characteristics or issues that would impact or influence the design of the described online class. Be sure to indicate which of the characteristics you identify would be your prime concern. Also be sure to indicate how each of the major issues you identify would influence your design of the online class.

You have been asked to lead the team that is developing a series of courses for an online University. Explain some design decisions or issues that you would have to deal with for each class given the characteristics of the contentinstructors and students as presented. Note: Pick the most salient characteristics and issues and explain why the ones you have chosen are key. Don’t try to cover every possible issue in each scenario!

Course A

Content: This course will cover beginning college algebra.

Instructor(s): This course is taught by various adjunct and full time professors who are very familiar with the content who have differing degrees of tech skills and online teaching experience. The same class has to serve for all instructors.

Students: All students in this course are college freshman and sophomores with good technology skills and each has successfully taken an online orientation to online learning course.

Instructors characteristics: One of the characteristics that would be my prime concern would be the fact it is taught by “various adjunct and full time professors who are very familiar with the content who have differing degrees of tech skills and online teaching experience.” This is problematic because every professor may have a different teaching/learning styles. On a different positive note, since each professor is familiar with the technology skills and online teaching experience, they will be to create a well adapted learning environment for the students. An environment that will meet the students need, and most importantly, will provide important feedback.

Students characteristics: students have good technology skills and have successfully taken an online learning course. This would only make it easier for the students in their learning because they are familiar on how online learning works. They will be able to engage in the online conversations with much more ease than those who haven’t.

As for the content for this course, math is often cited as an example of convergent content (approaching a definite limit as more of its terms are added).

Course B 

Content: The course is a philosophy of leadership class.

Instructor(s): The instructor is an experienced face-to-face instructor with good tech skills and prior online teaching experience. This instructor prefers lecture and discussion classes.

Students: Graduate students who are well motivated and with a broad range of technology skills, from average to very advanced.

Course content: Course B is a divergent content, which “often deals with subjects that are fuzzy or for which it is difficult to identify a single right answer.” Thus meaning that we could develop a thorough course yet we might not deliver a satisfactory answer. This might even become problematic for students, given that philosophy is a complex subject as it is, it might be a little difficult for the student to understand all of the materials if studied independently with no face-to-face explanation.

Instructor characteristics: The instructor is an experienced face-to-face instructor with good tech skills and prior online teaching experience. However, this instructor prefers lecture and discussion classes. One way to help the instructor create a better learning environment would be if he/she taught face-to-face but also included online material for the students. This way the instructor who much rather have face-to-face instruction would help its students learn the material more in depth but also giving them the opportunity to self-teach themselves on aspects they might be a little confused about. This would be easy to do given that the students are well motivated and have a broad range of technology skills. Some of the technology tools he could use would be discussion boards or blogs where students can further discuss what they have learned in class or to help each other understand terms they couldn’t in class.

Course C 

Content: This course is an introduction to college success. It teaches study skills, communication skills, and tries to help students learn how to fit into the college community.

Instructor(s): This course will be taught by various instructors all with good tech skills and prior online teaching experience but who have never taught this content before.

Students: Students are incoming freshman who have been identified by advisors as high risk for drop out.

Content: I would say this course content is considered divergent. This course teachers study skills, communication skills, and tries to help students learn how to fit into college community. The downfall of this content is that they are placing instructors who have never taught this course before. Thus presenting an issue that the student might drop out, which is considered a high risk amongst the students.

Instructors characteristics: Even though the instructors have good technology skills and prior online teaching experience, they have never taught this content before. In order for this course to be successful, they will need to gather as much information as possible. They will need to determine what information is important to teach to their students, this way they will have their students attention right away. They can use discussion boards or blogs to create communication skills with their students and create different quizzes online to determine if they have studied the material provided in class.

Students characteristics: The issue with the students is that they are incoming freshman and are at high risk of dropping out, these individuals lack motivation. If they find the material to be boring this will make them lose interest and will drop out right away.

2. Now, think about an online learning experience that you might someday create. Describe in detail the content, instructor and student characteristics. What are the design issues or features that these suggest? Explain your answers. 

Content: This course is an introduction to Spanish for college freshman. 

Instructor(s): The instructor is an experienced face-to-face instructor with good tech skills and prior online teaching and learning experience. This instructor prefers lecture and discussion classes.

Students: Students are beginning Spanish learners with no online learning experience but with good technology skills.

Content/Instructor/Students: This content will be considered divergent because there will always be more than one right single answer. I may create a well developed course but it might not work for all my students, as everyone learns differently. As an instructor, I want my students to explore their different learning paths and for them to create a creative learning environment instead of simply developing everything for them and just creating one answer to their problems. Even though as an instructor I have the ability to teach face-to-face as well as an online learning, I would prefer to teach one week face-to-face and the next for it to be completely online. This way my students, whom have no experience with online learning, could adapt to this kind of learning environment. This will also facilitate their learning in the sense that one week I will lecture on the basic materials and the next they will work on the problems online. Technology tools will make this experience more enjoyable and easier to comprehend, some of the tools I will incorporate will be blogs and StoryBoard where students will be able to work with each other to practice their listening, reading and communication skills. This will also help the students keep motivated as I will provide them with immediate feedback.

3. List the 11 instructional design steps presented in chapter 1 of the text (Design Quickly and Reliably).

1. Identify Your Underlying Goal

2. Analyze Learners’ Needs and Abilities

3. Identify What to Teach

4. Set Learning Objective

5. Identify Prerequisites

6. Pick the Approach to Meet Each Objective

7. Decide the Teaching Sequence of Your Objectives

8. Create Objects to Accomplish Objectives

9. Create Tests

10. Select Learning Activities

11. Choose Media

12. Redesign again and again

References

Horton, W. (2012). E-learning by Design. San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer. doi: 10.1002/9781118256039