Wk 8 & 9 A8: Comparing different schemas for design

The initial schema involved categorising general tools according to different types of learning.  Because the tools were listed with no relevance as to how they were being used, it was difficult to categorise them.  Tools such as CD Roms, Video clips and Podcasts can be used for so many things, they can be very difficult to categorise, and the basic nature of the table doesn’t really help anyone else use a table you have created as there is no option to explain how you think these tools can be used in all these ways. 


The second scheme involved mapping activities onto a 3D chart based on the model developed by Conole et al (2004).  In order to complete this task I separated out the table into 3 separate  lines ranging from individual to social, active to passive and information to experience.  I found defining activities in this was allot more useful than just categorising tools.  I also found it useful to put the activity somewhere within a range as some of the activities did not fit into one of the extremes.  For example i placed ‘a blog as a reflective diary’ closer to individual than social, but not at the end of that line, as I felt that a reflective blog can still be social as others could reflect and comment.  Of the three schemas, this is the one I found most useful.


For the final schema I created a table mapping out the parts of an activity according to the Hybrid Model. This involved breaking the components of the activity, mapping them according to the 8 learning events model developed by LabSET http://www.unfold-project.net/providers_folder/providers_resources/LEM/ and then mapping them against a set of predefined teaching and learning verbs.   Although the activity I mapped was quite basic I had some difficulty mapping the components against the learning events and teaching and learning verbs.  I also had difficulty deciding what a tool was and what was a resource. E.g. content on a VLE.  Although I appreciate the aim of this schema is to look at the learners activities, I think that any schema which requires classifying potentially complex activates against a prescribed set of options will lead to compromise and interpretation with some activities baring little relationship to the completed table.


I am not sure if these schemas would help teachers develop a less technology driven approach to design because the schemas themselves are based around the technology, particularly the first two.  I would propose an alternative approach where a designer looks at the objectives of an activity, then looks at the generalised actions they would like the students to carry out, similar to the 8 learning events,(eg collaborate ) and then looks at the range of methods to do this (e.g. Forums, Wiki, Face to face) and then look at the advantages and disadvantages of each method.


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