I have registered for Stephen Downes Personal Learning MOOC (#NRC01PL) even though I am juggling a few balls already. Since I am beginning an accredited course with some colleagues, as well, it may all be a bit much, but I really like Downes’ and company’s work and try to pay enough attention to remain aware, at the least.
Having tried some edX courses in the past, the open version of the environment was pretty familiar. Navigating the environment is not really a problem. I am not sure how much I actually like it. However, I am not sure how much I like any course management system.
What is a bit more tricky is that at the moment the edX course site is not mature enough as the course hub. By that, I mean that it has not been preloaded with a lot of content, that I can tell. It seems to be evolving in real-time. Downes is getting used to the system at the same time as the participants.
Of course, the course site will never include every resource available for the class. That is not really the problem, but there are a handful of streams already where the main content is made available. There is the course site, daily email newsletter, Downes’ blog and YouTube channel, as well as any additional tools employed, like Diigo.
It would be nice if that was all clearly collected within the edX course site. I suspect that will improve over time. It seems as though I am not the only one that is contemplating this either.
Here are some of my thoughts. I know it is all the start of an experiment, which is fine. Being a cMOOC always carries a bit of an experimental quality, I think. It is one of the appeals. I know through experience that there is no way to keep up with everything that happens in a MOOC, although that has always made me uneasy. There is never enough time to keep up with all the fascinating things that cMOOCs are so great at creating and aggregating.
Yet, I already feel a bit like I am bound to miss something important or forget to look in multiple places for some of the basic information related tot he course. Given that I am also starting a paid course for work that will undoubtedly take a bit more precedence, I worry about how much I will be able to stay connected.
I have liked all the cMOOCs I have ever followed, despite feeling like I struggle to stick with them. In the beginning, I would get overwhelmed very quickly and it took a few attempts before getting a better feel for how to manage my own involvement. Of course, so many things can interfere, like a traditional paid-for-course through a university, which has always frustrated me a bit. Still, those are the credits that have more currency in my current environment.
More than anything, I am hoping to pick up some methods and tools for better collecting, managing, and sharing my personal learning. It is something I have struggled with and never been completely satisfied with for awhile. I am particularly hoping to find out more about gRSShopper and how to possibly employ that as a possible tool.
Similar to Jenny Mackness, I suppose I am not sure how completely active I will be just yet, but as always I begin with the highest of hopes.