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Picture of Jeffrey Williams

Jeffrey Williams Post 1

5 Jun 2018, 19:07

Feeling Like A Beginner

I have been teaching in the North Carolina community college system for twenty-three years.  You would think that I have extensive experience with open education, and to a certain extent, I do.  I try not to reinvent the wheel if I don't have to, and if I can find something online that works much better than what I could have developed, I definitely make use of it.  There is also a community of practice among my colleagues, and we do tend to share with each other what has worked for us.  Many times, one or more of us will adopt a practice or assignment that sounds really promising.

On the other hand, as my subject line indicates, I really feel like a beginner at times.  Life was in many ways easier when ideas were confined to specific "nodes" like textbooks, library resources, and other publications or conferences.  These spaces were clearly identified, and their scope was clearly defined.  In any measurable way, things should be easier now because of the proliferation of resources available on the web, but the problem that I have now is trying to track down where these resources are.  This is one of the things I'm hoping to gain from this course:  handy "road maps" to finding the gems that I know are out there.

I'm also looking forward to specificity.  As much of our reading indicated, institutions, including mine, are often better at insisting that certain conditions be met rather than actually defining what those conditions are.  (As a related example, the system introduced a new course called English 112 about three years ago.  The state sent us a course name and description but then completely failed to give us any guidance on how the course should be put together.)  I like being given explicit descriptions of how things should work rather than "consultant-speak" with large abstract ideas without any information on how to actually put those ideas to work.

I'm looking forward to being given the tools to find the best resources available, and perhaps even contributing resources of my own.

Picture of Jenni Hayman

Jenni Hayman Post 2 (summarised) in reply to 1

5 Jun 2018, 21:57
Hi Jeffrey, great to have you here. What I hope will happen in this course is...
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Picture of Keith Kurtz

Keith Kurtz Post 3 (summarised) in reply to 1

6 Jun 2018, 05:39
Jeffrey, you have managed to convey my own thoughts and feelings more...
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Picture of Jennifer Nohai-Seaman

Jennifer Nohai-Seaman Post 4 (summarised) in reply to 1

8 Jun 2018, 15:55
It is easier for us to be confined to notes, etc, because "that's how we...
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