Have you signed up for the Instructional Ideas and Technology Tools for Online Success course?
This course, to be taught by Dr. Curtis Bonk on Blackboard's CourseSites, is designed to "provide both theoretical concepts and practical tools for instructors to improve motivation, retention, and engagement within blended and online courses."
The course starts in 4/30, and runs for 5 weeks. You can learn more about the course, and see the course objectives, and sign-up here.
We should define some terms:
Bonk: Bonk is Dr. Curtis J. Bonk, professor of Instructional Systems Technology at Indiana University and author of The World Is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education
MOOC: A MOOC is a "massively open online course." I think of a MOOC not so much in how many people sign-up, but in terms of the class being both open enrollment and cohort based. A MOOC has a start date and an end date, and the course contains the elements of content, collaboration and assessment. A MOOC is an experience, not a collection of content.
4 Reasons Why the Bonk MOOC is So Interesting
1. Designed By A Learning Expert: Unlike the Stanford MOOCs, or the other MOOCs floating around, this is the only open online course that I know of that has been designed and is taught by a specialist in course design and how people learn. Effective online course design requires a set of skills and knowledge that are different from those learned in discipline based PhD programs. (I never learned to teach, and certainly never learned course design, in grad school for sociology). Since Dr. Bonk is both designing and leading the course we should be able to develop a better understanding of best practices in online course design and facilitation. Moreover, I'm betting that Dr. Bonk has thought a great deal about how to design a course specifically for the MOOC format, a different design and teaching orientation than with a traditional (closed) online course.
2. The Topic: What is so exciting about the course is that the subject matter matches the delivery method. We will be learning about online learning in an online course. The interaction between subject and method will reinforce the learning.
3. The Community in the Course: The learners who sign-up for the course will be people who are also working at the intersection between education and technology. As with any good course, I expect learn the most from my fellow class participants. How wonderful to aggregate other folks from around the world who are interested in exploring issues around online learning.
4. Blackboard's Best Face Forward: This course seems like an ideal communications opportunity for Blackboard. Dr. Bonk is one of the best people I know who demonstrate the capabilities of Blackboard in terms of course design and effective collaboration within the platform.
Any plans to MOOC with Bonk?