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The OLDS MOOC Daily: day 7 (week 1 wrapup)

posted Jan 16, 2013, 5:01 PM by Yishay Mor
Today is the final day of week 1. The main activity for today was to reflect upon the week’s activities and any learning which has derived from this. This is also a good time for us to take a step back, collectively, and see what we’ve achieved. One of the tasks for this week was to “set your own learning objectives”. Only you can judge how much you’ve managed to tick those off. Many of you have reflected very eloquently on the week’s activities. Some of these have been captured via Cloudworks at:
and through the Initiate Scoopit at:

Looking at the learning objectives the week, there are things to celebrate:
Explore a variety of definitions of learning design

Clearly, you’ve been doing that - several threads in the open discussion group (e.g.,, have been debating definitions of learning design and their implications. This theme has also appeared in many of your blog posts.

Initiate own learning/curriculum design project; Identify specific topics of interest for further exploration

We counted 158 clouds in the dreambazaar, and many clouds in the team up and study circles cloudscape. These, together with numerous blog posts and tweets suggest that many of you are actively engaged. Of course, a lot of you are still lurking, searching, or just trying to make sense of it all. That’s fine. You can always set up your project team later on.

Define learning design, as a field of research and a practice; Identify some of the grand challenges of using a learning design approach to the design of learning in the 21st Century

Discussions around the “introduction to learning design” presentation, as well as the brainstorming activity, and references to a range of sources, such as the Larnaca Declaration on Learning Design,  show that this theme is present, but of course - this is only the first leg of our journey, and we will revisit these questions again throughout the MOOC and most notably in weeks 8 and 9.

So - a lot going on for one week! We’re very impressed with your achievements, and congratulations to those who have already applied for (and some received) their badges.

Regarding reflections, one issue that emerges from your blog posts and comments is the challenge of coping with so many technologies, practices and discussions. A second is the challenge of identifying a project, forming a team and finding a study circle. The first challenge, as some of you noted, is probably familiar to anyone who has taken an online course. As you rightly stated, this should be less of an issue as time goes on, and you will be able to focus more on the tasks. The second challenge is inherent to collaborative / project based on-line learning, and amplified in difficulty by the large scale, in terms of participant numbers, and exacerbated by the relatively intensive time scale if keeping to time. All that considered, you’re doing fine!  

Some independent initiatives are emerging that might help. Penny Bentley (@penpln) has been setting up spaces for interaction on Wallwisher and Google plus, Sheila Mcneill (@sheilmcn), Martin Hawksey (@mhawksey), Tony Hirst (psychemedia) and Nick Freear (@nfreear) have been experimenting with with the cloudworks API, trying to find ways to visualise the social and semantic graphs of the content you’re generating.
One specific issue that has been noted is email overload. Do like we do: when you visit the MOOC environment fora, look for the “my membership” button, and set up a delivery mode that suits you. We recommend “an email for every message” for the announcement list (!forum/olds-mooc) and a daily digest for the open list (!forum/olds-mooc-open). You can always browse and respond to the messages on-line, or go back and change your preferences .

Quite a few of you have indicated that the daily summaries have been valuable in drawing together the many strands of your activity (that we could keep track of) whilst you were spending time exploring the places and tools, and forming teams and study circles. These will continue, but probably at a lower volume.

So thanks for taking the time to read this summary, we hope you enjoyed week 1 and are looking forward to the pleasures and challenges that week 2 holds in store.