Questions, questions….

I thought it would never happen, but I have finally joined a MOOC. This one is called #ocTEL (it may sound like a petrochemical company, but it actually stands for Open Course in Technology Enhanced Learning) .

 Of course, we all arrive at these things with some ‘baggage’. In my case, it relates to the sure knowledge that all of my best learning (and teaching) experiences to data have happened in smallish groups. In other words at equal to , or less than, the 25:1 ratio suggested by Diana Laurillard in Webinar 0 (great numbering) as a norm for interactive learning. I think this applies irrespective of whether you are working online or in a classroom, by the way.

 However, I plan to be positive here. One good thing about #ocTEL is that it starts with a question; all learning starts with a question, so it’s great to make that explicit. Even better, the learner gets to make up his/her own question. You can’t fault that as a strategy for learner engagement. As someone who regularly guides groups of students in the task of formulating their own questions, it is a bit of a salutary experience for me: I am taking my own medicine, so to speak.

Therefore I have to ask myself what advice I would give myself. I would have to respond with some questions about the task itself, such as: What does an appropriate question look like? What would a good answer to that question look like? What do I need to find out before I answer that question? How long will it take me? Will anyone else care about the answer?

 There are a few more questions like these, but I won’t stretch your patience with these just now. I will go away and do some gardening while I think about them, I hope to emerge with a fully fledged question sometime around the time I have planted my last potato. Have a great weekend….

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