Reflecting Allowed

Maha Bali’s blog about education

Doing Online Courses for Meta Prof Dev

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I realize that ever since I got into education, I’ve been taking online courses for my professional development on a regular basis. While doing my MEd in eLearning (itself a fully online program) I took a free pre-MOOCs MOOCy thing called Ikarus which helped me explore Moodle and really cool theory and tools. I also took a cheap online Harvard Project Zero course on Diffentiating instruction. While doing my PhD, I took a course on online facilitation via Soliya… I later became a facilitator and coach and trainer of others. Near the end of my PhD I took some xMOOCs and then when I finished I discovered cMOOCs and that changed my life, and I have facilitated a few, and sometimes modules within them. Obviously prof dev is a daily thing with my PLN and a regular thing w Virtually Connecting…but recently I have wanted to take more focused courses with assessments and cohorts and stuff for the meta factor – looking at how other design their online courses. Sometimes I give suggestions on how to improve their learning design, sometimes I get inspired. For example, I loved discussions and readings in a facdev course I took last summer from UMass Amherst, but I also made suggestions to make the discussion more manageable. I also thought the CC Certificate course had some genius elements (you can design your own assessment, you can chat on Canvas for grades or on Slack for tangents) and other elements that could be improved (but had the opportunity to offer suggestions throughout). I also participated tangentially in facilitation of an AuthorAID course recently, and though my participation was low, I hope I helped a bit.

Coming soon… I signed up for a course I have been craving for years which is the e/merge Africa online facilitation course from UCT. I love that it’s focused on facilitation not design. I always wanted to keep the 2 free slots per institution for someone more junior than me, who has little experience teaching or learning fully online, but I finally decided I really wanna see this thing and I have a course in mind to design while learning in it. I want to learn this again among an African cohort in an African context of eLearning. Two free spots for Africans. Apply here: https://emergeafrica.net/apply2019/

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