My week 7 learning and reflections (Sheila MacNeill)

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Sheila MacNeill
27 February 2013

Back in my confessional space this week!  I haven't really engaged as much I would have liked this week.  Partly because of travel and other "stuff" but also because initially I though that I might not be able to do much as I still haven't created a proper learning design.  However, on reflection I did do a bit of crowdsourced evaluation with my week 5 protoype for a redesign of the cloudworks profile page.  I did get feedback both on my blog and the cloud from students and the course team which was encouraging as they seemed agree with my overall ideas, and contributed their thoughts.  I also had an email exchange with Juilette Culver the developer of Cloudworks, which as useful. Juliette has also posted to my prototype cloud giving some feedback and refelction on what is actually possible.

Yesterday I was at a workshop for the wid@t widget tool, which I shared as part of the toolbox activity way back in week 3 I think.  And as I was working through their design template, I was reminded of personnas again and realised that if I was to take my prototype design forward I really need to think about a personna. I implicitly based my ideas on my "oldsmooc student persona", but I think if I had taken some more time to make that more explicit and get views of others that would (and still could) help to explain my design rationale more clearer. Which in turn would help conversations with developers like Juliette who have to balance my needs/wants of the site as a learner on an course, with the other users and help to prioritise any potential developments. A lot of my ideas do require quite a major redesign. So, I've found this week has connected some of the earlier topics.

I've just been catching up with the convergence and it was really interesting again to hear the team and Briar talk about what success means, and redefining it from measures associated with traditional courses. Yishay made a very good point about drop out not being a failure if you have got something out of the course.  That is a key message for MOOCs, which relates to learner control and confidence and I guess literacy too.

I think Briar also made a good point about the pace of the course and meeting deadlines. I've made a concerted effort to do "something" each week. That something is sometimes more involved than others, but just creating and writing up a cloud each week has been really helpful for me own sensemaking.  Again that's one of the motivations for looking at Cloudworks in more detail as I think it provides a really useful dedicated, contained, linked and social space for learners to reflect. 



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