Latest Entries »

Mail merge


Its all about the mail merge


practice for PBL

I am looking at which blog platform is the most appropriate for our PBL students. This interface has changed yet again.


This is the link to the elluminate session about facebook with Ross and Herve. It was very informative and well worth listening to. I am sorry that there wasn’t more participants to have a greater discussion.

Facilitating online Effective use of Facebook

Effective use of Facebook

I have often had conversations with colleagues about the use of facebook in the classroom not by the lecturers but the students who appear to be addicted to it. Have a look at this list about those who could be addicted to social networking .   I have looked on the internet for some information about facebook and of course there is an enormous amount. There is articles about using facebook in the classroom and why that is a good idea and reasons why it isn’t.  For older students and for  school classrom   Blogs and statistics about who uses facebook and why.    Articles about the dangers of social networking which includes facebook and how they can be used to introduce spyware and malware. Of course there is the ever present danger of predators using social networking sites for malicious purposes. Also there is  currently a new movie about Mark Zuckerberg the creator of facebook very interesting reading  

Finally something about twitter

There is a lot of information to read but hopefully this will add to the discussions so have a look at some of it if you can.

I have asked Herve Carpentier from Manukau Institute of Technology who lectures in Network security and Network engineering, he will talk about the negative aspects of Facebook. While Ross Buchan from Otago Polytechnic CLC’s (Community Learning Centre) who works with students showing them computing skills using MS Office uses Facebook and twitter for social networking and as part of the marketing for the CLC.  Once they have finished talking we can have a discussion on how or if it can be used for our gain as businesses and educators.

 The Elluminate meeting is on the 18 November 4pm for all those who can join us. 















I have had a great break and now I am trying to decide what would be a good topic for a mini conference and whether to use asynchronous or elluminate.

I have a few ideas one being the pros and cons of using facebook in a learning environment. Personally I would like to have facebook locked here on the Otago Polytechnic campus simply because I teach computing and I spend a large portion of my time encouraging the students to get off it and onto their actual course work. Some actually appear to be addicted they can’ t help themselves. There must be  something about the dangers of too much online social networking. Honestly some have being facebooking each other in class 2 or 3 computers away.  All in all a good topic what do you think?

e-learning facilitators

The reading from Ed Hootstein was informative, the idea if different roles that you have  to be aware of. All  of this while not new to me is good to see the concepts put clearly so it can be referred to.

A direct quote from the Four Pairs of Shoes Ed Hootstein these different roles.

As e-learning facilitators put on and take off the four different pairs of shoes that define their roles–instructor, social director, program manager, and technical assistant–they should keep these action items firmly in mind:

  • address the needs of adult learners by guiding self-directed, realistic, problem-based learning experiences
  • structure learning opportunities in which learners make their own meanings by discovering content on their own
  • encourage high degrees of participation and interactivity
  • offer prompt, informative feedback
  • provide strong leadership
  • help learners feel comfortable with technology.

Gilly Salmon e-moderation strategies

This powerpoint great resource for practical ways of using the facilitated session great!!

Communities and networks

I have spent an interesting hour listening to the elluminate session with Nancy White and the group participating as a group. Drawing on the whiteboard and having a discussion about the benefits, issues and solutions to being an online community. The idea of control, too much or not enough can obviously make or break the session for participants but that of course could be said of  F2F learning. The group were together for a common purpose so they were all inclined to behave! with the correct netiquette. It is interesting to see the more experiences members who appear to find all the technology apparently easy as well as the newer members who pick up how relatively easily as well, very encouraging for me a novice at this.

Second Life Elluminate recording

I have begun listening to the elluminate recordings to see how it is managed both by the facilitators and the listeners. The first one was the Joining the Second Life Education Project on New Zealand. One of the points that was brought up was the concept of tone in a discussion. It is easier to have a conversation face to face because of the tone of voice makes all the difference for me . I find it better to be able to ask questions directly or in response to topics, ideas or points taht have been brought up.However I see that if you are delivering information through a virtual classroom (Elluminate) with a discussion at the end there is still an element of being able to hear the tone of voice rather than a group forum or email group.  I can see that I could use this  for my students so we could have answers and questions.  I was listening Asynchronously to the recording and I am keen to become part of a synchronous discussion. I have heard both of these terms before but now I have taken the time to stop and decide if there is any useful application for me. Because I  was unable to be there for the original session is was great to be able listen to the recording and knowing I could pause it and go back to it as well as go back over something that was said and listen again. I am also enjoying the new terminology asynchronous, synchronous, virtual classrooms and even “Second Life” I look forward to seeing that working. 

Jan Delmas video was very interesting clear ideas about how to facilitate a group workshop.

 The  video   from Nancy White  about communities was also interesting and I found the definition of the difference between network and communities very clear and concise. I also read  Building Online Communities this supported some of my frustrations with online communities.

  • That some people read but don’t respond I am guitly of this on occasions I like to think about what I am going to say because the online is very public.
  • I can think faster than I can type and going back because I have made an error re typing can be frustrating.
  • The need for F2F communication and body language I suppose this is important in developing relationships but perhaps not so when delivering information for example how to to students.
  • There is a lot of reading and scrolling through and I apologise for those who will have to read such a long post.
  • I need to be able to develop community and encourage participation

I have done a lot of reading and it has been very interesting. I have been busy with other projects and I still am, so getting up to speed has been a bit of a mission. This has also put pressure on me so I think of students who will probably be in the same position I am interested in ways to minimise this issue.

Facilitating Online course

Starting again to use the blog. Its been a while since I have used this blog, I have others but this one is for any courses that I am participating in.  Please ignore the previous posts they belong to a past course I did in 2008,I didn’t want to create another blog. Sorry I’m a bit late joining Sarah but I am keen to get up to speed.

I work for the Otago Polytechnic as a lecturer in the School of Business for computing. There are usually large class numbers and a variety of skill levels, sometimes the more skilled students become disengaged with the learning because of this. So I have decided to use a more blended delivery allowing the more competent students to work online and to attend class for tutorials and assessments only. I haven’t worked out the finer details yet but I’m sure that as I think  through the process there may be some difficulties. Having completed online courses myself as a student it can be fraught with issues but Hopefully not.

I am hoping that the Facilitating online course will give me some of the tools I can use to make this transition easier for me and students.

I have used online tools before blogs etc and I have found that you need a relatively good skills to navigate around all the technical, (how to do things part of the online digital world). I like to be able to do something immediately and have full control over the process but sometimes the digital world can interfere with that. I find that repetition of these functions is the key, the more often I do it the easier it is to remember.

Looking forward to engaging in a learning environment that exists online.

The visual impact of a picture or a relevant video does add to what your reader gets out of a blog. The objectives to this week is to add those interesting items that can emphasise some point or aspect of your post.

Looking at putting in a relevant video. To add a video that you have created you need to upload it into either Blipty or YouTube and then add the embedded code into your blog. Of course if you want to add your own you need to have an account with them. You can also add a video from either of these sources as well.  You will also have to be aware of copyright issues as well.

  • How to add audio
  • The following is a video from Youtube that shows how to add a video to a wordpress blog.