Day 2: Tools tools tools !

Expectations I knew virtual study group means lots of tools. But the amount of tools we are actually using with the program is mind-blowing. Luckily I have been pretty used to using some of the tools we are going to use. Otherwise it would be really overwhelming to manage all this. Note to self Keep on learning new tools ! That is the best way to keep up with the digitalizing world and renew your skill set. It is good to get used to actively and regularly learn new tools so that you don’t end up outdated and overwhelmed if you one day like to attend a digital job or even course like this. I can imagine that lack of digital skills is quite a hurdle for many people who have 20 years of “old school” work experience under their belt but less clue about the digital world. In that situation it is very difficult to find a new job, because majority of new jobs require digital skills.

Tools for the EduLab program

Here is a list of some of the tools we are using during the program:

Course Curriculum: Course Blog

Virtual EduLab Meeting Room: Adobe Connect

Virtual Grapes Team Meeting Room: Adobe Connect

Virtual Group Room: Adobe Connect

Sharing documents: Google Docs

Blogs: WordPress

Surveys: Webropol

Virtual badges: Oppiminen Online

Information sharing and team building: Facebook group

Teamwork organisation: Google docs

Expectations for the EduLab program For the only two days we were meeting face to face we naturally used good old discussions and whiteboards to reflect and brainstorm. The picture above is our manual exercise about our expectations for the course. I discussed my course expectations with Anu. We had very similar expectations:

  1. Learn top pedagogical methods and teaching techniques.
  2. Get confidence in creating and running educational courses and content.
  3. Learn timing and structuring content.

Janne revealed that there are at least 18 different methods we are going to apply. We will get 90% rid of one talking head, which is not the basic pedagogical model in vocational field. We will be using debate, games, video, etc… We will absolutely not spend adult people’s times to watch together a video. We will learn that teaching activity activates good learning activity. We will not have lecture as our only pedagogical method although students very strongly expect teacher to lecture. By definition vocational equals wanting practical instead of theory. Saying everything aloud is NOT learning. Experiental learning = kokemuksellinen oppiminen. Janne assured that we will become very skilled online teachers. This is great because the demand for online teaching increases in the future due to digitalization. Expectations Here is a collection of all our expectations and some Janne’s comments:

  1. Getting the license to teach.

With the 60 credits we’ll become qualified subject teacher. It means we are qualified to teach in vocational schools, the third sector schools such as folk high schools, adult institutes and other educational organisations. University teaching does not require pedagogical studies, which is quite funny.

  1. New products and methods we are going to develop.

EduLab gives the opportunity to create anything. People are getting different things and apply their learnings into creating something new. We are getting rid of subjects. Competence areas are replacing subjects. System does not train single topic skills, instead interdisciplinary multi-discipline learning science, educational products, businesses.

  1. How to combine previous experience with the studies.
  2. How to motivate: Last minute deadline : )
  3. High expectations. Expecting a super course.
  4. I want to make a new profession in teaching. Having practicul stuff to use at work.
  5. Expect to learn what motivates adults. Different things to everyone.

Concerns and resolutions and ideas

  1. Concern to learn tools: willingness to learn most important here.
  2. Concern to build community experience: Always have an intensive face-to-face meeting first to build collaboration. Always try. Be active on Facebook to keep you face visible in discussions.
  3. Concern to programming: No needed.
  4. Concern: Time, time difference, connecting with the group. Time is the biggest concern in adult education in general.

Flipped learning – what moving online means in practise:

  • You get documentation!
  • You lose personal contact so you must compensate visual cues online with some other methods to make sure you pass the feelings, too.
  • Small talk and light discussions are lost easily.
  • Check your speech volume, and if others can hear me. Ask for feedback.
  • You must plan more carefully.
  • Learning is more task oriented compared to live teaching.
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2 thoughts on “Day 2: Tools tools tools !

  1. The amount of online tools might seem exessive, but hopefully by now it doesn’t feel like we are diving into pedagogy by choosing the tools first. The aim is, of course, to set the pedagogical point of view and learning first and then hopefully, we will find a way to reach these goals with the tools we have.

    It’s really good to return these early posts and see what was going on in our heads a few months ago. And I think you also listed the main goals very clearly alredy in the beginning: at least it looks like you knew what you’re diving into! 😉

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    1. Thanks Janne. Yes, I think I can easily see the learning process already by comparing the early blogposts to the newest ones. How cool is that !

      I think this course does things in the right order. Also the tech focus should not have come as a surprise because that is exactly what was promised. So that’s what we’re getting.

      For me it is exciting to force yourself to use new tools – if they are good ones and easy to grasp. At the same time I know many people do not think that way. I see that in my work with adult students. The digital divide is huge and I need to put a lot of effort to convincing middle-aged unemployed people to quickly start learning digital tools in order to exist in the job market and in order to be employable in the first place.

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