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Come Fly with PDP !

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 8 Jul 2012, 07:58

I had an interview in London that by fortuitous timing ties directly into the H808 ECA (end of course assessement) that I have to complete and upload in the next 13 hours. What is more, every part of the MA in Open in Distance Education with the OU would have some application to the role for which I'd applied. Personal Development Planning (PDP), the subject of the ECA, would be imporant too, indeed it is a vital component of 'learner-driven' or 'learner-centred' education. Successful, engaged, pumping PDP is at the heart of e-learning - people must be motivated to take the initiative, to drive their learning while others support them in every way they can with appropriate resources, many of which will be 'electronically enabled,' i.e. 'e-learning'.

I have a draft of the ECA written, the choices of evidence have been made, collated and labelled.

I've already uploaded a draft so feel confident that the ETA system will handle whatever else I do.

I had the file, rather more chunky printed out and clipped into an Arch-Lever Folder than on a memory stick or zipped on the laptop so that I could review it on the train journey in and out of London. I like paper; things need to be expressed in other ways that via a QWERTY keyboard. It helps to talk, to discuss, to animate your thoughts with your hands even ... as we shall see.

On the way into town I find myself sitting with a friend who is 18 months into the Creative Writing course at Sussex Univeristy and was having a second interview with a literary agent; our respective career paths were shared. He is a professional photographer who has an online resource of stock photos targeted at UK Councils. I don't look at the ECA.

The interview, like so much I now do, is duly reflected upon, though for reasons of privacy not here as an open blog. This debrief, this self-assesment, served a dual purpose, at the front of my mind, of course, is the possible outcome and responses to the interview. And notes on how and where I felt it went well, or not so well, for future reference and to judge what improvements I might make when attending such interviews in future and how to compose my written thanks when I reply.

I recognise the purpose and value of reflection and make the time to do so

At the back of my mind, of course, as we talk, is the ECA.

Coming to the end of the interview process I felt compelled to share this sketch to add conviction to my belief that Personal Development Planning is 'at the heart of things'.

f1a749e0e8e2fe72ed06794383f7f981.jpg

I did this earlier today to get a handle on how in one shot I now see PDP, not as a self-contained 'do it and move on unit' at the start of a course, but at the heart of what you do: at the beginning, the end, everything in between ... and beyond. (And yes, you should hear Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) saying it!).

It was somewhat evangelical of me, but I feel passionate about it. I believe it as a consequence of my own personal experience and from others who take this approach.

Reflection with a second person can help; it is natural that my wife would take an interest in the day's events. This is invaluable, and is a form a assessment. However, where I find I become increasingly animated regarding PDP is that I felt I still hadn't got it right, that had I seen myself in that meeting what was I doing with my hands? What else was I trying to express? Sometimes recording an interview to look over it afterwards has advantages. You need to be winkling away to find ideas and inspiration.

I'd mentioned life-long learning, that PDP can benefit both your career, how you organise a hobby, even family life.

And then I remembered this:

My interpreation, visualised, of what life-long means from H807.

4ee8ecb0ed3cd82e948ab0f7fc2bbd1b.jpg

The problem I have with my sketch of 'PDP at the heart of things' is that it loops back on itself, there is no suggestion of improvement, of advancement.

I toss around further ideas like a board game, the PDP process being, for example, what happens every time you 'Pass Go' in Monopoly. Then I imagined climbing up a helter-skelter, or fairy-lights around a tree. I thought too about Kolb's cycle of development ... and then, as I was standing up waving my hands about I got it ... a great analogy would be of a glider catching a thermal and rising in a series of circles.

'A load of hot air.' My wife remarked, laughing.

And yes, I could imagine giving a presentation and a heckler saying exactly that - so I'd have to have a reply prepared. (Be prepared for anything)

With this in mind I set to work.

Earlier this week I threatened to photograph myself standing next to the family washing-line with my evidence pegged out. This is how I said I would make my choices and write the assignment. As it was raining instead I got a roll of wall-paper backing paper and stuck it to the bedroom wall with masking tape; I would draw my washing line. I have just taken this down and taped it virtically.

At the bottom I draw this.

bcf13c7d5e943bded0d7569befcbd350.jpg


Then I go for this.

 

JFV PDP Cycle as thermalJFV PDP Cycle thermal close up


In a live presentation I would draw this from scratch on the largest sheet I could find, talking my way through it, seeking input, offering explanations.

As a video-asset I would lock off an overhead camera and draw it onto a sheet of A3 paper, possibly over a lightbox, and then use EFX to speed it up. I would then add a voice over.

There are many other ways to play with it to varying degrees of simplicity (authenticity) or ellaboration. Not least by using stock footage of a glider or Condor or some such catching a thermal with labels tagged onto the video archive footage as it played out. Indeed, going from the basic sketch it might be better still to invite course particpants to create their own expression of this PDP as an ascending cycle - say playfully spinning around in front of camera with a balsa-wood model glider with the person's name on it! Fun is good. Originality is good. Personalisation is good. This makes it memorable without needing it as an APP or an electronic alert.

The conclusion I find as convincing as the process.

The process here includes reflection, blogging, collaboration ... and could in due course include video, podcasting, presentation and moderation.

As I was able with ease to add every aspect of H808 onto this simple diagram I felt I had reached an important point, not least vindicating my methodology that might look as if it is depends on technology, but does not. Often the route to get an idea from the mind into the public domain is via face-to-face discourse, a few movements of the arms, then reaching for pen and paper.

This diagram can be draw it up differently depending on the context.

This implied versatily suggests it effectiveness.

PDP as indicated here suggests a set period to repeat or revist the process ... this ought to be expressed to occur every quarter, rather than after every cycle as suggested here with loops that might represent a typical OU unit of two weeks and the activites one engages with along the way.

A productive day then.

 

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The most important report you'll wish you had read before your submitted your H808 ECA

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 29 Aug 2011, 18:20

Birds of a Feather: How personality influences blog writing and reading. (2010) Jami Li and Mark Chignell. Science Direct. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies 68 (2010) 589-602.

I could blog on it at great length and no doubt will as I chew over their 8500+ words, but this shall have to wait a week.

 

 

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Belbin Team Roles. Who are you?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Tuesday, 29 Nov 2011, 07:25

Belbin Team Roles

So who are you?

Shaper

• Highly motivated with a lot of nervous energy and a great need for achievement.

• Like to challenge lead and push others to action, can be headstrong and emotional in response to disappointment or frustration.

• Generally make good managers because they generate action and thrive on pressure.

Plant

Innovators and inventors – can be highly creative. Often enjoy working on their own away from other members of the team.

• Tend to be introvert and react strongly to criticism and praise. Great for generating new proposals and to solve complex problems.

Co-ordinator

• Ability to pull a group together to work towards a shared goal.

• Mature, trusting, and confident they delegate readily. They stay calm under pressure.

• Quick to spot an individual’s talents and use them to pursue group objectives.

• Co-ordinators are useful to have in charge of a team with their diverse skills and personal characteristics.

Monitor/ Evaluator

• Serious-minded, prudent individuals.

• Slow deciders who prefer to think things over – usually highly critical thinking ability.

• Usually make shrewd judgements by taking into account all the factors.

• Important when analysing problems and evaluating ideas and suggestions. Resource investigator

• Good communicators both with other members of the group and with external organisations.

• Natural negotiators, adept at exploring new opportunities.

• Adept at finding out what resources are available and what can be done.

• Relaxed personalities with strong inquisitive sense and a readiness to see the possibilities of anything new.

• Very good for finding resources and heading negotiations. Implementer

• Well organised, enjoy routine and have a practical common-sense and self discipline.

• Systematic approach to tackling problems • Reliable and hardworking.

• Will do what needs to be done whether or not they will enjoy the task. Team worker

• Supportive members of the team.

• Flexible and adaptable to different situations and people.

• Perceptive and diplomatic.

• Good listeners

• Avoid conflict

• Good at allowing everyone in the group to contribute.

Completer-Finisher

• Have a great capacity for follow-through and attention to detail, and seldom start what they cannot finish.

• Dislike carelessness

• Reluctant to delegate, they prefer to tackle tasks themselves.

• Good at tasks that involve close concentration and a close degree of accuracy.

Specialist

• Pride themselves on acquiring technical skills and specialist knowledge.

• Priorities are to maintain professional standards and advance their own subject.

• Very committed.

• Important in providing the technical expertise and are usually called upon to make decisions involving in depth experience and expertise.

REFERENCE

Belbin, M. (2004) Management Teams: Why They Succeed or Fail (Butterworth Heinemann, 2nd ed.,)

Who are you?

 

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What chance does a book have in 2011? Book 2.0?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Tuesday, 28 Dec 2010, 04:03

The opportunist are even better for the someone with something to say or the skill to tell a good story. Without the support of a publisher your book may take time to find a market, but it will: narrowcasting and micropublishing makes this possible.

49b19901a0cf753ab282b71ceb82b5ff.JPG

Once a dirty word, 'self-publishing' makes sense; have a website, say something often, build a readership then have a book, CD or T-shirt to sell. i.e. be commercial, sales are better than hits.

Books will be bought in great numbers, but in a plethora of genres and volumes, because on the one hand this micromarket can be winkled out, while on the other, if there is a marketing campaign behind the book which uses the Web successfully, it might attract millions.

I dare say it helps to be writing in this global language which I call 'English English,' that might in time transmogrify into 'global English' or even 'globalish'.

Steven Pressfield is a prime example of an author who has embraced the web.

Screen Grab of Steven Pressfield Online homepage

I'd also recommend his book 'The War of Art', though despite my taking several years out to write I find resistance always gets in the way; blogging is my form.

These words will add to the 1,8 million I've pumped into Cyberspace since 1999.

Perhaps it is about time I put some of the following online:

Escape from Alien Zoo

Kids returning home in the school bus are abducted by aliens and put in a zoo.

Fortune Photobooth

An handful of coins used in a Photoboth take the person back to the time on the coins. I've had them back to 1066, 1914 and 1957 so far.

Get Jack Back

Henrietta Wilson, a nurse on the Western Front, successfully poses as a Machine Gun officer to go in and get her brother Jack Back from a pillbox on the edge of Houthulst Forest, Passchendale.

Airborn

Gustav Hemel a pre-World War 1 aeronaut faces internment, or worse, being shot as a spy soon after the outbreak of war. He fakes his own death and returns a training officer and fighter pilot George Hepple.

The Watersprites

A couple of water-living humanoid creatures are forced out of their sanctuary in a small lake and hole up in a condemned public swimming pool. Befriended they journey from city to the mountains to be reunited with their own kind in deep lake in the Alps.

The Girl in the Garden

Three 10 year old prep school boys find a young girl in their den in the woods. Sworn to keep her hidden from adults and other boys they successfully fend of all 'attacks' and dangers. When she dies they bury her in a their garden plot which wins that summer's 'Gardening Cup.' 1972.

Driving Blind

On a whim a guy takes a bet from an American tycoon to drive a car on public road for 100 miles wearing a blindfold. The prize isn't the $1,000,000 but the technology that is developed, tested and stolen.

Skieasy

The best 1000 ski runs on the planet lovingly analysed!

Perhaps I can do this one, when I've sold a few million of the above sad

Perhaps it is time for me to decide how I am going to survive 2011

 

 

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Collaboration in most things

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 21 Nov 2011, 08:18

Experiences here, lessons learnt and studied, has me now appealing to friends and colleagues to collaborate on all kinds of things.

What strikes me, having spent a few years buried in my writing and alone with the task, is how I have always worked best in a team, if only in a team of two. I do well as number two, I like to have someone working to, for or with me, I like constructing larger teams.

The intention therefore is to throw several balls into the air, but rather than juggling alone there will be a troupe. These will be formed into formal teams (businesses, projects) and less formal ones (writing, thinking teams and partnerships).

The outcomes?

  • Results
  • Credits
  • Reputation
  • Income
  • Contentment
  • Pride

Whilst supported online I know too that for the sake of cohesion and commitment there will need to be face-to-face meetings and shared offices. As soon as I can get an office in town, I will do so. I am looking for a space at the University Innovation Centre and for the first time in a decade will get an address in the West End, back to Newburgh Street or Newman Street, or in Covent Garden.

Ask me in 12 months time how 2011 has been.

Either way I'll keep you posted here.

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Grinning like a child

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 19 Dec 2010, 08:08

I have to confess that I am chuffed at my mark for TMA02.

Whilst the work is mine I feel especially delighted that a result like this is the product of learning with a highly supportive, collaborative group that is expertly nudged, managed and poked by our Tutor. I look forward to 2011 and my final module in the MA in Open and Distance Education.

I'm enjoying this too much to take time off so will blog through Christmas and the New Year. Over the summer I bought a couple of books on e-learning. If I thought they'd be delivered I'd buy in a few more.

Or might Santa bring me an e-reader?

I find some of the best reading I do is in the bath, in bed as I go to sleep ... or sitting on the South Downs looking out to sea. I also find reading away from home is more engaging, somehow my mind engages better when I am somewhere else.

Mixing work and play?

I never thought there should be a difference.

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Podcasting - flick record any old time and see what you get?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 8 Jul 2012, 13:46

It seems counter-intuitive to drive 160 miles to record a Podcast but I will reflect in due course on why this was better than recording a Skype conversation. We recorded onto a Netbook through the mic on a headset while cooking dinner.

This produced audio that was remarkably satisfactory to my professional ear. (I did six months as a sound engineer with a broadacast TV crew once upon a time).

Ian (a director and e-learning 'guru') and I last worked together in 1998 on the launch of the European Stock Exchange EASDAQ and were 're-united' by LinkedIn about five weeks ago.

I need to recognise after thirty years in 'the media' that even recording good sound has been reduced to pressing a button. All the effort we used to make to get 'clean' sound is now redundant. The microchip has given recording devices a brain that filters out the extraneous sound.

We recorded onto Audacity; I will clean up the 'noise' as I would a photograph using Adobe Photoshop.

I'll also edit down as we covered four or five topics ... in as many hours.

We discussed collaboration online, e-learning, video production, podcasting and his intentions to compete in an Iron man in Abu Dabi next March, also his e-lerning work in Abu Dabi.

My visit was in part to spend an hour coaching him in the pool. So we do a podcast my fixing the Front Crawl in a reasonably competent adult swimmer who will have to swim for about 90 minutes in the Gulf waters before doing the mega-cyle and a marathon run.

We've known each other since our teens and have made 30+ videos together and a few short films too.

Would this exercise have been better had I prepared questions?

For us to have jotted down some possible responses?

For the recording to have been done more formerly in a quieter setting?

Should all audio tracks be supported by text? Which may make the audio redundant?

I recall the audio we listened to in week 1 of Robin Goodfellow et al, and having transcribed what they had to say would quite frankly have preferred a Twitter from each instead of a few minutes of audio waffle.

Do we afford waffle credibility by recording it and posting it online for comment and for posterity?

My concluding thoughts?

Forget polish, only content matters.

Somewhere in this podcast (to follow eventually) we dicuss the 8mm footage from 'the hill' shot by Zapruder. He had no skill at all with the kit, or any craft as a camerman, but the event he caught on camera was the shooting of JFK. The 'Zapruder Effect' describes film (or audio) that may be of poor quality, but the content of such importance it doesn't matter.

I think we've reached the stage where audience and listeners don't give a monkeys for 'professional production standards' so long as the content is of interest.

A role for Podcasts in E-learning? Absolutely.

The three hours I recorded of a machine gunner from the First World War can now be made available for everyone to enjoy. Forever?

Or will his voice become lost in the several hundred (or thousand) recordings of other veterans?

On verra.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thomas Edison and innovation

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 12 Dec 2010, 05:07

For anyone embarking on H807 'Innovation in E-learning,' although it isn't part of the course work (yet), I'd recommend listening to the following discussion on Thomas Edison.

The participants are right to suggest that in establishing a lab for inventions Edision create a model that has been followed by others. This may be particularly pertinent when you look at Facebook and Google, also the history of Apple - possibly also of Dyson. Indeed anyone who wishes to be engaged in successful innovative practice.

It would make an interesting discusion point for units on collaboration and leadership.

What delivers success?

How do you thrive on change?

Why is commercialisation vital to success?

 

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Who am I according to Belbin Team Roles?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Tuesday, 29 Nov 2011, 07:34

A shaper and plant.

 

Shaper

  • Highly motivated with a lot of nervous energy and a great need for achievement.
  • Like to challenge lead and push others to action, can be headstrong and emotional in response to disappointment or frustration.
  • Generally make good managers because they generate action and thrive on pressure.

Plant

  • Innovators and inventors – can be highly creative.
  • Often enjoy working on their own away from other members of the team.
  • Tend to be introvert and react strongly to criticism and praise.
  • Great for generating new proposals and to solve complex problems.

For this reason, and explaining successes of the past, I need to team up with the following, a:

  • Co-ordinator
  • Monitor/ Evaluator
  • Implementer
  • Team worker
  • Completer-Finisher
  • Specialist

As we often take on two or three roles this explains how a team of three or a band of four may be enough. They're called:

  • An accountant
  • Sales

 

 

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Who are you in a collaborative exercise?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Tuesday, 30 Nov 2010, 12:53

I was directed towards these key roles within a team by fellow Group 2, Trevor's Group member, Mark Collins

 

Belbin Team Roles

So who are you?

Shaper

• Highly motivated with a lot of nervous energy and a great need for

achievement.

• Like to challenge lead and push others to action, can be headstrong and emotional in response to disappointment or frustration.

• Generally make good managers because they generate action and thrive on pressure.

Plant

Innovators and inventors – can be highly creative.

Often enjoy working on their own away from other members of the team.

• Tend to be introvert and react strongly to criticism and praise.

Great for generating new proposals and to solve complex problems.

Co-ordinator

• Ability to pull a group together to work towards a shared goal.

• Mature, trusting, and confident they delegate readily. They stay calm under

pressure.

• Quick to spot an individual’s talents and use them to pursue group objectives.

• Co-ordinators are useful to have in charge of a team with their diverse skills and personal characteristics.

Monitor/ Evaluator

• Serious-minded, prudent individuals.

• Slow deciders who prefer to think things over – usually highly critical thinking

ability.

• Usually make shrewd judgements by taking into account all the factors.

• Important when analysing problems and evaluating ideas and suggestions.

Resource investigator

• Good communicators both with other members of the group and with external

organisations.

• Natural negotiators, adept at exploring new opportunities.

• Adept at finding out what resources are available and what can be done.

• Relaxed personalities with strong inquisitive sense and a readiness to see the

possibilities of anything new.

• Very good for finding resources and heading negotiations.

Implementer

• Well organised, enjoy routine and have a practical common-sense and self

discipline.

• Systematic approach to tackling problems

• Reliable and hardworking.

• Will do what needs to be done whether or not they will enjoy the task.

Team worker

• Supportive members of the team.

• Flexible and adaptable to different situations and people.

• Perceptive and diplomatic.

• Good listeners

• Avoid conflict

• Good at allowing everyone in the group to contribute.

Completer-Finisher

• Have a great capacity for follow-through and attention to detail, and seldom

start what they cannot finish.

• Dislike carelessness

• Reluctant to delegate, they prefer to tackle tasks themselves.

• Good at tasks that involve close concentration and a close degree of

accuracy.

Specialist

• Pride themselves on acquiring technical skills and specialist knowledge.

• Priorities are to maintain professional standards and advance their own

subject.

• Very committed.

• Important in providing the technical expertise and are usually called upon to

make decisions involving in depth experience and expertise.

 

REFERENCE

Meredith Belbin, Management Teams: Why They Succeed or Fail (Butterworth Heinemann, 2nd ed., 2004)

 

There are EIGHT roles here?

Serendipity or planning (ask the tutor) found six people collaborating online in H808, unit 6. I believe that between the six of us all these roles were covered ... not a role each, perhaps two, sometimes three with the 'ball' as we came to see it 'kept in motion' through-out.

 

Recipe for successful online collaboration?

Treat it as a cook would. Ensure that you have the right ingredients in each bowl.

 

And who am I?

I know. Which explains perfectly, in hindsight, how I behaved.

 

Do share.

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H808 activity 6

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Saturday, 27 Aug 2011, 18:35

Some of the software is too clever by half. All of it has foibles.

Docx might punch some useful quasi-intuitive tools but it smacks of Apple pixie dust sprinkled over DOS. Failing to share docx word and excel docs with others with older software on PCs, let alone with MACs harks back to the early 1990s when this kind of incompatibility was common and a constant frustration in the 'creative industries' between those who were MAC based and those on a PC.

Up at 3.56am. Potty. But a couple of hours later and if I have been distracted I can only blame myself. The dog is asleep at my feet, the family sleep above me, though my head is full of domestic grief, not ours, but my daughter's boyfriends family starting a messy break-up with him temporarily ejected from his home and seeking sanctuary which we feel unable to offer.

Back to business.

My response too often is quick and emotional, this can apply to domestic life as well as work. I lead with the heart. I am learning to do otherwise, to make the time, to try to be rational, to avoid tipping from radical alternatives of hate and love, yes and no ... there is always a middle way, however hard it may be to negotiate or to my mind however dull 'middle of the road' might feel.

Middle of the road gets things done, with drama, in a professional manner, which may be the point in a module on the 'e-learning professional.'

H808, UNIT 6 A COLLABORATIVE EXERCISE

Having had some successful experiences I know what it takes, what skills, tools, timekeeping and commitment works. Where in the past I have been introduced by others to some simple online tools to share, collaborate and contribute work in an engaging way, both synchronously and asynchronously ... it may be my turn to get out of the passenger seat and take the wheel. Often you find the 'vehicle' drives in automatic, Skype and sync.in for example, Google Docs too, are far easier than you may at first imagine.

Tools for co-ordinating availability between people on opposite sides of the globe anyone? Personally I operate as if in three places ... spending a few hours on the Indian subcontinent, a few hours in the UK .... then reappearing on the West Coast of the US!

The 24 hour economy should not mean that you work for 24 hours. Or does it? Perhaps we'll reach the stage where we keep links with people permanently open wherever we go, as if they are sitting on our shoulders, forever at our side, omnipresent and god like (in the Greek sense).

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Filemaker Pro

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 29 Aug 2011, 18:00

In an effort to bring myself into the 21st century technologically I am revisiting Filemaker Pro as a piece of software I have used since it was developed in 1994, though not upgraded in eight years.

Whilst it is a relief to find current versions are familiar in terms of the way fields are created and popualted with 'assets' it is a pain that to transfer material I am going to have to retrofit an earlier version of Filemaker and use this as a electronic stepping stone.

The reward will be to have data that I am familiar with that I can then manipulate and share in a Web 2.0 way. The intention is then to populate this with a substantial number of documents to familiarise myself with how it operates with text. It used to be the case that files could not contain much more than 150 words.

Then I will use Filemaker Pro to build by OU e-portfolio for H808.

The problem no doubt remains of 'interoperability.' Does my using Filemaker Pro necessitate others to have the same software? To use its extensive functionality, probably so ... however, on a 31 day free trial I  think much could covered and from this user's point of view, the investment in a light version of Filemaker Pro may be more beneficial that going down to the route of a customised PLE of various recommended software tools, or going for Google Docs.

Meanwhile my OU Blog and MyStuff get the lot! (Just to be safe)

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Compendium

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 12 Sep 2010, 15:00

I'm keeping a 'log' of my progress into Compendium private for now. I may in due course edit this down into some succinct steps picking out anything that may trip up the unwary or some new take on how it can be used.

Meanwhile, bouyant as a result of advice and suggestions given by other OU students I am going to do some housekeeping on usernames and passwords then give some other software a go if only to have a break from Compendium.

If you are looking at Compendium for the first time do get in touch, we could get our heads around this together.

Yes, two heads are better than one.

 

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Re-invention of e-learning

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Thursday, 31 Jan 2013, 06:07

Isn’t ‘re-invention’ the word? (Rogers, P114 & P115, 2002)

Not wholesale repurposing, but as Rogers puts it 'It should be acknowledged that rejection, discontinuance and re-invention frequently occur during the diffusion of an innovation and that such behaviour may be rational and appropriate from the individual's point of view.' (Rogers, p114 2002)

I wonder how my experience might have been with a group of colleagues or friends, signing up together ... but might this too ‘spoil the party.’ And how over a longer period fellow students would be emailing and messaging and getting on the phone ... let alone meeting up.

This fascinates me primarily because I am convinced that collaboration, sharing, discussion and so on is crucial to a deeper learning outcome. But does this not have to be down to the drive of the individual and permitted by the institution they belong to?

How much motivation can others really offer or be expected to offer?

If neither a carrot or stick will work with adult learners, especially in a online environment, then what do you do? ‘You can take a horse to the trough, but you can’t make it drink.’ As I’m about to take a course on the Psychology of Sport as a Senior Swimming Coach I may gain some further insights into waht motivates people to do something and how outsiders can influence this in a positive way.

And just because we’re invited to drink from this trough once, dos not mean we will do it again, or often or with enthusiasm. Our moods will wax and wane, or commitments beyond the course will impinge.

Deep learning, as I’ve learnt, benefits from, even requires a rapport with one or several others at various levels of understanding – a Subject Matter Expert (SME) or experts, a tutor, a couple of fellow students on the course, and perhaps someone more junior who can be in turn mentored or tutored by us (first years being buddied by a second year, a post-grad student supervising a fresher).

How much this mix can be set by what little the OU or other Distance Learning Provider knows about an individual is quite another matter.

Do you run a call-centre like team of facilitators/moderators ... or aspire to the one-to-one relationship of tutor or governess to student mimicking some land-owning/aristocratic model of the distant past? Where is or how can that rapport that can work between student and tutor be recreated here? Or is this something for a DPhil?

A free-for-all would create imbalances, inevitably ... for the institution. But whose experience are we prioritising here?

Whilst a balance must be found, if the best outcomes are to give tutors and SMEs much more time online to forge relationships then this should be - a good coach attracts the best athletes and attracts the interest of other coaches. How does she do that? (Expertise, training and personality ... enthusiasm, putting the athlete at the centre of things)

Perhaps by pursuing ‘educational social networking’ institutions are shooting themselves in the financial foot?


The time put in to make a freer networking between students, tutors and SMEs, with students in different time zones and different priorities would be prohibitive. Undergraduates studying on campus, in a homophilous cohort, with fewer worries (other than debt) don’t know how fortunate they are to have this opportunity to study, probably for the only time, before the life of the wider world impinges.

REFERENCE

Rogers, E,M. Diffusion of Innovations. (2005) 5th Ed.

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Design Museum

Blogging. A private journal, journalistic or academic?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Sunday, 8 Jul 2012, 13:05

Three Degrees of Blogging

If it plays to how it is defined, a ‘weblog’ then it should be nothing more than a captain’s log, in the style of Star Trek, that logs position and events as they occur.

Web pages, cobbled together into a journal like experience defy what the web affords.

The person who keeps a diary in a hardback notebook, or one of those Five Year Diaries with a flimsy padlock, have to keep notes on specific dates in the calendar, online the daily webpage is a falsehood, it is a devise that obliges something that is wholly unnecessary.

Personally, long ago, I ditched all pretence at writing a daily entry (even if I did so), by archiving entries by category.

Weblog as webstorage or repository.

More like the modern e-portfolio I suppose. The idea concept is easily controverted. Writing pages of fiction, with comments turned on make sharing and critique immediately possible. Allow any number of readers to contribute directly to the pages and the weblog becomes both a blog and a wiki.

Can we ‘wikify’ a website?

And do I coin such a word as soon as I tell my dictionary to accept the term? Which makes me wonder – is there a way for multiple users to share the contents of their dictionaries?

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New blog post

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Wednesday, 11 Aug 2010, 13:56

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‘The secret of a full life is to live and relate to others as if they might not be there tomorrow, as if you might not be there tomorrow. It eliminates the vice of procrastination, failed communications, failed communions. This thought has made me more and more attentive to all encounters, meetings, introductions which might contain the seed of depth that might be carelessly overlooked. This feeling has become a rarity, and rarer every day now that we have reached a hastier and more superficial rhythm, now that we believe we are in touch with a great amount of people, more people, more countries. This is the illusion which might cheat us of being in touch deeply with the one breathing next to us. The dangerous time when mechanical voices, radios, telephones, take the place of human intimacies, and the concept of being in touch with millions brings a greater and greater poverty in intimacy and human vision.

Nin (1946)

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My obsession of the last decade has been my life on-line. My life in words. My life with people I have never met and will never meet.

I found the above in a journal entry I wrote in 1992; I am regurgitating it on-line, in bite-size form, elsewhere - the 2,000 words or more I would write not right for this on-line sheet of OU soft paper on a roll that tears about where people get bored with my say and want to get a word in edge ways.

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REFERENCE

Nin, A. (1946) Vol 4, Journals, May 1946.

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So here's the edge of the paper -

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Cogntive Behavioural Therapy

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Session 12 after nine months

The OU course had to come into the discussion. My topics today were:

Effort

Perfectionism

Collaboration

My problem being that I will make the effort, and put in too much effort, where a topic interests and engages me. However, I may shy away from anything that doesn't appeal to me. The answer is to find a middle road, to be be flexible & adaptive.

Regarding being a perfectionist, something similar applies. So in OU Land, do as required for each task and in each environment. No more. This is good. How I indulge my interest in something by chasing references is for me as an 'add on.'

Collaboration requires trust. You put in what you have to offer and you trust others to make their contribution in their way, in their time. More can come through sharing, that trying to do everything yourself.

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