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Lesley's learning journey, 14th January 2013 (2)

The journey continues

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Lesley Shield
14 January 2013

I'm very confused by the teaming up activity. The instructions tell us to team up and to link a project team cloud to the teams cloudscape. So far, so clear. Find a team. One member creates a project team cloud (is this a study group?) and links it to the teams cloudscape while other team members link it to their own cloudscapes. Easy.

But that's not what's happened. Dreambazaar clouds are appearing in the teams cloudscape. But if one project team needs to negotiate the contents of a project based on a range of different 'dreams', how can they do so in a single 'dream' cloud?

Maybe we need clearer instructions and a worked example; this seems to me a very clear illustration of the need for such clarity - different people can interpret the same instruction in so many different ways!

And then I'm uncomfortable about this 'teaming up' notion. It reminds me of being at school and being terrified I'd be the one who's left out of the teams. Now, I don't care, I'm quite happy to go my own way, but a few years ago I know it would have bothered me a lot and probably damaged my self-esteem enormously if nobody had found my 'dream' interesting or asked me to join their team... This feels to me like an aspect of MOOC that is really quite dangerous and one that needs to be taken into consideration when designing any sort of collaboration, regardless of number of participants. How to solve it is an interesting issue; with small numbers, the facilitator can easily observe and make suggestions if someone appears to be being overlooked. With larger numbers, massive numbers even, that's not really viable. So, what to do? Rely on others' good nature? Hmmmm...

Perhaps I'm just cynical, but it seems to me it isn't just children who indulge in ignoring , overlooking or just plain bullying (deliberately or inadvertently) others. Admittedly, I've seen no evidence of any of those behaviours here, but MOOC does appear to harbour that potential.

So, my question for the day is whether MOOC can support the individual, whether that individual is an individual by accident (overlooking, ignoring) or design (chooses to be that way)?

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