Professional Development MOOC Success: Feedback from Instructional Design for Mobile Learning
The Faculty eCommons recently wrapped up Instructional Design for Mobile Learning (IDML), a free, 4-week professional development MicroMOOC in which participants explored principles, pedagogies, and tools for designing mobile instruction. IDML was delivered through Canvas Network. IDML supported a connectivst, social learning model that allowed participants to choose their learning goals. Because participants determine their own paths, the MicroMOOC model proved beneficial for those seeking to expand skill sets: course materials, activities, and webinars were optional resources participants chose to engage with based on learning needs. IDML attracted participants with a wide-spectrum of skills and familiarity with mobile learning, allowing for rich conversations and knowledge sharing. Even those with advanced backgrounds in mobile learning felt the course provided opportunities and a helpful community of educators that promoted a deeper understanding of course topics. Participants remained active on Twitter, in the Canvas course, and on personal blogs where they tracked their learning and connected with each other.
Psst…Interested in joining our next MicroMOOC journey?Register for Game Elements for Learning (GE4L). GE4L started July 1, 2013, but registration remains open until the course is full. Want a sneak peek of GE4L? Check out participant conversations on Twitter.
Participant Statistics and Survey Responses
To gather participant data and course feedback, we asked participants to complete pre- and post-course surveys. The following information captures statistics and response to open-ended survey questions. The age demographic was centered around adults in their 30s and 40s:
- 86% wanted to learn more about the subject
- 43% wanted to gain skills for a career opportunity
- 70% expected to spend 1-4 hours per week on the course
- 79% were primarily from North America
- 75% said English is their primary language
- 90% had at least a 4-year degree; 72% had at least a master’s degree
- 80% had taken an online course before; 17% had taken a Canvas Network course before
- 58% were female
Opinions of the MicroMOOC format
“[I learned] how a web-based MOOC can be organised and structured. What value one might expect from a mini-MOOC. What it required to engage with an online MOOC.” “My first MOOC. I was able to work on it on my iPhone while waiting for my kids during their activities in the car. I liked that it could be done anyplace, anytime.” “I gained several new resources that I had not heard about before and I enjoyed observing the way the MOOC was facilitated compared to other online courses.”
What valuable things did you learn in this course?
“I learnt that even though I teach political science courses, I can still employ mobile devices to make the students more engaged and stay connected. I have become more familiar with different apps. Also, I finally got a Twitter account.” “[I learned] new apps, new software that will help me to connect me with my students.” “I learned a lot from the different speakers as well as the activities and apps you gave us. It is nice to learn from the participants as well…” “I’ve learned that not all of the course content needs to be mobile-compatible, but that mobile devices can be used effectively for certain activities (such as notifications and just-in-time learning).” “I was introduced to the Heutagogy concept, different to the traditional vertical pedagogy one, which with Androgogy more suitable…for constructivism-based interactive educational results.”
What was your favorite part of this course?
“Webinars and reading materials. My favorite part was that I was able to go at my own pace.” “The online webinars were great…but so was the constant chatter on Twitter under the hashtag #idml13.” “Definitively the 1st webinar with Dr. Metcalf was the most exciting because the learner has been put in position to know the exponential potential, with interesting data, of education through mobile learning technology.” “The ability to experiment not only with taking a class on my own mobile device, but also experimenting with programs for creating mobile activities.” “Reading others’ suggestions [in] the course and how they do or would apply in their courses.” “The resources I was able to discover through my peers.” “I always enjoy the readings. I like to see what other people think are interesting, relevant, and practical articles. I liked the webinars.”
IDML Round Two
Due to positive feedback from IDML participants, the Faculty eCommons may offer the course again next year. But stick around! The Faculty eCommons is currently facilitating GE4L and developing near-future MicroMOOCs that focus on developing skill sets for teaching in online environments. How about you? If you participated in IDML, what are your key take-aways? What did you find most beneficial about the MicroMOOC format?