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Learning and Knowledge Analytics – getting started

  • Course  Learning and Knowledge Analytics Introduction
    • to raise awareness of the role that analytics can play in education
      • something that has become more tangible for educators to do as more and more education design is done online and gives rise to an increasing amount and array of data …
      • traditionally only available and seen by administrators ..
      • now more and more available to teachers / instructors / designers
  • Course syllabus

Learning & Knowledge Analytics 2011 – LAK11 – is an open course that will be offered from January 10 – February 20, 2011. LAK11 serves as an introduction to the growing field of analytics in teaching, learning, training, development, and organizational knowledge.

While I had every intention of starting this course when it first started in mid January, I’m still intent on moving forward and “through” it even though I’m really only making a push starting now – week 4. Why? Because from the short time that I did spend with the first few suggested resources, I was led me to believe that it would be incredibly insightful and even useful in directing my own professional interests. To be more specific, I can see how knowing about learning analytics would help inform my practice as

      • an instructor/ educator
      • an information technology specialist
      • a professional practitioner
      • a potential learning design consultant

My professional / personal objectives (or the questions that I hope the course will help me answer) are….

      • What exactly is “learning analytics”?
      • What is the attraction?
      • What are some issues / concerns that one needs to be aware of when using it?
      • How is it relevant or useful to what I do now or could be doing in the future?
      • How can I use it?
      • What sort of tools are readily available to me to use it?
      • How easy is it for me to realize benefits of learning analytics – for myself / for my students?
      • How easy is it for others to see and experience the benefits of learning analytics?

Posted in Learning Analytics, Professional-development.

What is a community of practice anyway?

Posted in Cultivating Communities of Practice, Professional-development.

Community of Practice – case study – Staffordshire’s “Best practices in eLearning”

duration? 5:08 min

Posted in Cultivating Communities of Practice, Professional-development.

Community of Practice – case study (FFHE)

duration? 2:54 min

Posted in Cultivating Communities of Practice, Professional-development.

Digital Habitats Community Orientation Spidergram Activity

Posted in Cultivating Communities of Practice.

Week 1 – Reading – The Future belongs to those who.. (summary)

A short piece that provides a relatively simple (and in some ways already familiar) framework for planning a course of action around a review of possible “futures”.

Begins with recognizing the uncertainty of the future .. and yet points out that there still are “discernible directions” which can support some planning and improve ones likelihood of success in the future. Note: It should involve identifying “futures” – plural because “there is no future that is fated to occur” (p.2).

Step 1 – trend monitoring
Step 2 – writing scenarios
Step 3 – realizing a vision
Step 4 – defining a mission
Step 5 – realizing clear goals
Step 6 – strategies

The article does not suggest that there is a step by step approach to realizing strategic planning that incorporates “futures” review.However, I could not help realize the difficulty of doing most of these steps without such a sequence.

This brought back memories of my own involvement on vision statements in at least three organizations. Two of them with non profit institutions, namely art galleries and the last being with an educational institution. Interesting to note how the work of the smaller non profits was in many ways more urgent and meaningful.

The Institute for Alternative Thinking. (n.d.). The Future belongs to those who.. a guide for thinking about the future. The Institute for Alternative Thinking. Retrieved from

Posted in Education Futures, Professional-development.

Week 1 – Siemen’s Intro (Summary)

There is an enormous array of versions on what the future of education will look like. Problem – as a teacher, leader, policy maker, its almost impossible to know which trends are important .. which ones we need to pay closer attention to then others..

Where’s the methodology for reviewing those trends?

There are methods. It begins with

  • tracking trends
  • creating patterns based on trends
  • utilizing existing stats to realize a foundation for planning for the future in education

Thinking about what that future will look like is important. It is an
important skill to learn. The ability to analyze these trends can help  prevent costly missteps .. or avoid following trends that are not likely to be supported in the end.

What’s the approach of the course?
Siemens notes that he’s been involved with Dave for awhile in realizing an open, decentralized course such as this. Such a course is designed to be filled with different voices.. invite the sharing of your ideas here or anywhere.. (encouraged to tag it with “open futures”). It will provide a basic weekly structure of

  • readings
  • videos
  • interviews
  • topics to respond to

Its success is largely determined by the participants. Both Cormier and Siemens build some of the course around what emerges from collective  participation. As discussion goes on, topics are tackled.  The course emphasizes a “data” based approach to realizing “futures” and promotes a large scale discourse for the future of education.

Posted in Education Futures, Professional-development.

Week 1 – Cormier Intro (Summary)

Key to the course is exploring or learning how to explore trends now and where they could lead us in education.

Cormier gave an example of “futures” work done recently in Singapore. There they observed that there is a solid trend towards a market driven education future. Results of this? As corporations do more and more training, there is likely to be a knock on effect on high schools (i.e. the need for high schools to do more and more training (specialization) at the cost of  having less time for general education.

Doesn’t this raise still more questions?
Is this the type of future we want.. how can we plan for this (or impact on the forces that may be contributing to it). By reviewing these forces, there should be less room for senseless debate. Instead, debates now become anchored by these possible scenarios.

He stresses the course’s focus by stating ,”This really should be an exploration for people of  “futures”.
He then provides a quick tour of website
Key here was the use of discussion forums for encouraging exchange. link

Posted in Education Futures, Professional-development.

Tagged with , .

Futures “thinking” – getting started

Am going to following the Open Course in Education Futures ( being co-ordinated by George Siemens and David Cormier. Is it all about crystal balling? I should think not. I’m intrigued to learn just how my own thoughts on the future of education compare with those of others and better yet, perhaps I can learn a thing or two about how one can “improve” one’s game at the art of predicting the future .. especially in the field of education.

My thoughts about the future of education?
Formal education will increasingly be under pressure to recognize informal learning. Key issues?

  • growing relevance / importance of context as it applies to knowledge and its use (socio-cultural considerations)
  • formally recognizing and even encouraging informal learning (JIT learning takes on more and more importance)
  • formally recognizing and even encouraging the sharing of one’s findings in the application of knowledge to specific contexts
  • finding methods to structure and integrate informal learning for accreditation purposes

Posted in Education Futures, Professional-development.

Tagged with , , .

April 2010 – Day 2 – Kathmandu

Stop 1 – Pashupati temple

Nepal Trip – April 2010 – Pashupati – Kathmandu

Stop 2 – Boudhanath

Nepal Trip – April 2010 – Boudhanath – Kathmandu

Stop 3 – Bhadurpa

Posted in Nepal - 2010, Travel.