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B822 Block 2 Managing Problems Creatively

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The degree to which this block is practical Shocks; I am so used to reading and exploring thoughts and ideas. I may have got the bulk of this block's reading out of the way in 24 hours. It helps to be in a beautify cottage away from the routine and distractions of home; we're in Long Compton for a week, on the edge of the Cotswolds, where the children we born and where we lived for four years. I am rested: a pitch black night and so quiet it numbs.

For MAODE modules H807, H809 and H800 I offered up the week's activities per post. For B822 I may offer eight posts covering the 8 chapters with a selection of the activities that take my fancy. The big issue will be to select a real problem to tackle using these 'creative' tools (most of which feel like familiar territory having been part of the 'creative problem solving' community most of my career.

Meanwhile I have the little matter of a 50th Wedding Anniversary: an academic affair as she was a Sommerville language scholar and he a Balliol and Pembroke Philosopher and this as a good reason to celebrate their survival.

Amongst giants? I try not to say anything stupid.

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Balliol College Record and late Christmas Cards

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Saturday, 8 Oct 2011, 14:52

The Balliol Annual Record 2010, and some late Christmas Cards, arrived on our doorstep this morning.

The Balliol Annual Record, the print version of LinkedIN or even Facebook, has had its day; it was a few months late, which hints at its demise. The news is thin, I'm in touch with College Alumni through LinkedIN in particular, Facebook a little bit  - even Friends Reunited.

Every word that I read here should be online, I dare say it is.

I shall therefore vacuum pack this issue in the belief that it has to be the last.

Not even my father in law has a word and he's been contributing for the best part of 60 years. I'll see him in a few hours time and ask about this. I'm inclined to podcast him too, I have some questions regarding the migration of his School for Leaders to an online course - or at least modules that can be enjoyed largely when and where you wish. At 85 it is staggering how engaged he is with the new technology and what it can achieve.

Looking forward to how the OU reinvents itself on 2011; I know things are afoot.

If anyone reading this has a foot in the door I'd love to come in and do what I do best - stand back, observe, contemplate, then offer ideas from a rich and variegated career.

P.S. a spellcheck that doesn't recognise Facebook as a word is due for the scrap heap. Surely the OU can tie in to the OED??

Collating evidence for H808 ECA. Interestingly, in a parallele existence, I'd say that all the criteria I meet for H08 I have duplicated in Plenck and the LinkedIN Oxford Alumni E-learning group.

What I learn from engagement with like-minded enthusiasts is already outweighing what I am learning from this course; is this par for the course?

How come I know people who will be or are more qualified than the MA ODE can offer without ever having gone through these hoops?

Meanwhile, for reasons only known to her, I have read and chewed on a book from a psychoanalyst on the dilemma and trauma of the English School boarding school boy. I was packed off age 7 years 11 months and after a few aborted Colditz-like escapes got out age 16 years and 9 months.

I've been dealing with the fallout these last 18 months. My wish?

That I'd never, never, ever been sent away to boarding school.

Forty years on I am trying to undo the damage the places did to me.

'Sausage machine' is a good term for it ... the brutal bullying without anyone to turn to is something else. And yes, I had to fag and got out because I had no desire to be put in the position as a Public School Prefect (and for a variety of other reasons, including being told I could not take Art, would have to play rugger over swimming, could play the lead in Macbeth if I cuddled the new English Teacher and would not have a girlfriend until I got to my gap year or university).

Oh, and I hated the House Master and his assistant who were clueless dimwits who could never have held down a job outside the system.

These places in the 70s still expected to churn out obedient servants for the Armed Services, or the Civil Service or the Colonial Service ... to feed the public school need for staff.

This or your Pater & Mater owned most of Northumberland or Sunderland so education would be the only little bit of suffering you needed to endure before you could be ejected as a Prefect ready to be prefectorial over your minions.

My mission for 2011? Campaign to close all public schools; the current scam whereby they retain Charitable Status if the most laughable abuse of power, quite as bad as MP's expenses as a challenge to 'the way things are done.'

Quote me.

 

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Multimodality vs. a messup (also known as a mashup)

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Saturday, 27 Aug 2011, 10:52

Mulitmodality is the professional and practicle expression of a mashup.

Multimodality (Kress, 2010) is unique to using mixed electronic media. It is what I crave when listening to a podcast or watching something on YouTube. I want the interactivity, the non-linearity and the connectivity that is unique to a multimodal response to learning.

There's not much of it about.

Or is there?

Compendium's pretty neat. Not the best user interface, but it is non-linear and multi-layered and most of all, it only works in its digital form.

What else?

I enjoy Spaced-ed where I am currently doing World History in Maps and Core Anatomy for Medical Students.

See Learning by Degrees in the Harvard Magazine for a piece on the creator of Spaced-Ed, also Floreat Domus 2010, the alumni magazine for Balliol College, Oxford,

Acrobat Presentations

Although I am yet to use this, it feels like a combination of Skype and Power Point, with audio and video thrown in and superior graphics (it is after all Acrobat).

 

I invite further suggestions:


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REFERENCE

Kress,G. (2010) Digital Literacies. A research Briefing by the Technology Enhanced Learning phase of the Teaching and Learning Research Programme. Julian Gillen and David Barton. London Knowledge Lab. Institute of Education. University of London. www.tlrp.org/tel

On of a pack of leaflets, reports and brochures I picked up at JISC in April. I only dug them out because I craved some e-learning literature in print. Odd that.

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Interactive Spaced Education that works

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 4 Feb 2013, 11:43

Serendipity took me to Space Ed when I had just started H807 ‘Innovations in E-learning.’

Dr Price Kerfoot is an alumni of Balliol College and he was featured in the College Magazine. This Balliol and Harvard trained doctor had considered ways to improve the way in which medical students learn. A great deal must be learnt rote, you have to know your anatomy (to start with). This means dissecting a cadaver, making the information stick, then testing yourself relentlessly so that exams can be passed.

Here is a professional educator using e-technology to solve a problem.

As an innovation in e-learning nothing compares. It may not use second life or 3D animation, but is addresses a learning problem and offers an effective solution – good-bye factoids on Rolodex cards, hello 21st century email and text alerts probing you to answer multi-choice questions correctly. If you get it wrong, you receive the right answer and an explanation. This question will be resent in due course and sent repeatedly until it is self-evident that you now know the correct answer.

I’m signed up for Core Anatomy.

I haven’t a clue but using Google and go into research mode. It is staggering the wealth of visual materials to support learning, beautifully rendered images of the human body, podcasts from doctors, definitions of the terminology with audio so you learn how to pronounce these things. I still get the first couple of questions wrong, but never mind. I understand what the right answer is, I am building a corpus of knowledge that will in time enable me to answer 100 questions rather than only 25.

Give it a go.

Better still, build your own Space Ed programme. The platform is free to use and you are free to offer the results of your endeavour for free … or for a fee.

REFERENCE

TESTING NEW INSTRUCTIONAL METHODS

Interactive Spaced-Education to Teach the Physical Examination:

A Randomized Controlled Trial

B. Price Kerfoot, MD EdM1,2,3, Elizabeth G. Armstrong, PhD2,3, and Patricia N. O’Sullivan, MD3,4

 

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Education is a business

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 29 Aug 2011, 17:45

Discuss

After 750 years I think my own alma mater has got something right. Don't tell me money has had nothing to do with it; money is everything.

Those brilliant minds the college creates occasional pay back. Are they the exception to the rule? We can't all rule the world and win Nobels. Those who do attract funding. Brands are centuries old.

How many took their paid-for education and moved abroad?

Should financially insecure, unattractive educational establishments survive?

How many drama schools do we need?

Unlike health services, higher education cannot be free at the point of delivery. Unless the tax payer is going to dictate which subjects are taught.

Don't get me wrong. Support for those institutions that cannot expect to be 'going concerns' is warranted.

And there's nothing wrong with drama school, but how many actors has the UK produced over the last fifty years who were educated at the state's expense only to move abroad?

 

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