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#etmooc: In the beginning … January 19, 2013

Posted by IaninSheffield in CPD.
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Intrigued by the potential and keen to explore a cMOOC, I signed up for #etmooc quite early. I undertook the preparatory steps in advance of the first week, ensuring my blog could be hooked in to the network, joining the etmooc Google community, posting a brief into., linking to the shared calendar … then at this point it became clear that the first week wasn’t going to go too smoothly. I couldn’t join the first scheduled orientation webinar since I was in school that evening, nor indeed the second – a meeting after work meant that I would be on the journey home at the time. Even the ‘repeats’ weren’t really practical on this occasion, since a midnight (for us) until 1.00 am session might have an adverse effect on an already demanding week. Darn it!

Nevertheless since the first two sessions were to explore how Twitter and blogging could be central to one’s involvement in #etmooc, and given that I’m familiar with both, I hope the impact on the remainder of the ‘course’ won’t be too harmful. What it did mean however is that I missed the opportunity for forging some of the initial links that are so important in establishing the necessary relationships vital when learning with others who may be far apart and with whom you might never had contact before. I find I get a much faster(?) (better?) impression of what someone thinks when they’re reacting in the backchannels to the stimuli during the webinar, rather than reading a bio … and with over a thousand (?) participants, even a sampling process will take some time. So I’m looking forward to next week’s sessions with renewed enthusiasm, though in the meantime will be playing catchup to some extent – reading & commenting on the etmooc Google Community streams, checking some of the intros posted, perhaps catching the archived Blackboard Collaborate sessions.

Although a little late in the week, here’s my offering for the Orientation week activity (and a link should it fail to display):


I settled on Empressr as the tool of choice – it offered the functionality I wanted to deploy and as always, I chose a tool with which I’m not familiar so that I could learn more about it whilst undertaking an authentic exercise. It has that familiar feel of other slide show-style presentation tools but being online, allows for easy retrieval of other online resources like videos and imagery from common online libraries. Since the product of your labours is online, it also means that distributing it is easy too. Allowing the upload of audio which can either play across the whole presentation (which I mistakenly chose!) or recording directly over each slide means standalone presentations can be much more informative and richer.

Wonder what I’ll be using next week …?

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Comments»

1. Lorraine Boulos - January 19, 2013

Hello Ianin,
I loved your Empressr presentation.
It feels strangle, and intimidating for me, being a part of this MOOC with so many people who have so much more tech experience than I do myself. But when I watched your presentation, I realized that while I don’t nearly possess your skills or experience, I do share your questions!
I have always been a self-directed learner, I love learning, but books were always my teacher of choice. Of course, I have also been a serious web-crawler, but I never really knew how to make the most of what is out there.
This MOOC has been exciting for me because I’ve realized that not only is the Internet a wealth of information, it is also a way to connect with, and learn from and question one another.
Thanks for sharing!

ianinsheffield - January 20, 2013

Hi Lorraine,
Thanks for dropping by and for the comment. As you rightly point out, the participants in #etmooc will span the whole spectrum of tech experience and capability. For exercises such as the introductory, that doesn’t really matter; you just pick a tool with which you feel comfortable (or want to explore) and have at it. I guess that extends to the notion of the MOOC as a means through which to learn too. Some will be comfortable and experienced in environments of this nature whilst others are making their first foray; some will be at ease, whilst others experience discomfort. What is key in either instance however is the quest to make sense of it all, for that is where the learning begins.
I guess one of the concerns I have is that the tech will doubtless, for some, provide a barrier preventing access to learning by MOOC. Some shun tech through fear or misunderstanding, others avoid social media and whilst they are of course at liberty to do that, it causes me to worry on two scores:

    Is it truly the tech which is the obstacle, or an entrenched view of what learning should involve … or even for some, that they have lost the thirst for learning?
    If we don’t avail ourselves of opportunities to explore new ways of learning, how can we be in a position to advise our students on the possibilities that are becoming available to them?
2. Etmooc Comment Scraper Output (continued) « Connection not Content - January 23, 2013

[…] Jan: ‘#etmooc: In the beginning ‘ by ianinsheffield Intrigued by the potential and keen to explore a cMOOC, I signed up for #etmooc […]

3. connectiv - January 26, 2013

[…] Teachers should know about Creative Commons, when they want to use technical apps for education. Since the product of your labours is online, it also means that distributing it is easy too. Allowin… Ian Guest Even recording online video or work could be an infringement of copyright! Put a sign on […]

4. Copyright or wrong? « connectiv - January 26, 2013

[…] Teachers should know about Creative Commons, when they want to use technical apps for education. Since the product of your labours is online, it also means that distributing it is easy too. Allowin… Ian Guest Even recording online video or work could be an infringement of copyright! Put a sign on […]


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