Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Evaluating my 2 week asynchronous Event on blogs

Evaluating mini event on blogs as effective e-tool
Topic - Blogs as effective Asynchronous e-learning tool
Mode - Asynchronous through Discussion forum
Venue/Interface- Google Blogger
External Links- Link to presentation in You Tube
Interface - Open Source, anyone can post comment.
I advertised my conference details in the course wiki and also emailed blog link in the beginning of the forum to all the Facilitating Online Communities Group and also advertised in facebook to my friends.
Week 1 began with introduction to blog in education and where it fits in the broader context of learning and teaching in learning environment. Focus was not on just implementing blogs in e-learning set up, but its effectiveness in a learning environment whether its face to face delivery or online or blended.

Facilitation was aimed at generating content for participants to sink into the discussion and collaborate individual thoughts, knowledge and experiences.
At the end of Week 1 I summarised the discussions briefly and again sent a reminder to all FOC 09 participants and also notified my friends by email.
Since,everyone in the group was sorting out their mini-conference event, i thought (well I assumed) most of them must have forgotten about my asynchronous event amidst all organising their event.
Week 2 was about discussion around implementing blogs in education. I invited one of the participants from another module Katie Gibbs to share her experience with implementing blogs in her class.

How did it go?
Including mine , it created 40 comments to the post, so i must say the event generated intended outcomes.Everyone gave a valuable and useful contribution, which i summed up in my reflection.
HIGHLIGHT:In its second week, discussion came out to be more robust and alive and we were reflecting critically on use of blogs as a e-tool.

What went well?
The advertisement, the video and the content kicked well. It put everyone is state of equity and convenience; all got the writing space to voice their opinion because of asynchronous nature of the learning event. Unlike in real time where you could miss out on people who take longer to understand and post questions, the 2 week time frame generated lots of enthusiasm and contribution from the participants.

Being asynchronous in nature it overcame the rigidity of a live event where, if someone misses, they miss voicing their opinion, even though they could listen to the recording later.
Also, partcipants had time to digest,reflect and fine tune their thinking before posting.It made possible for all to give personalised feedback on their informal learning achievements like that of Debra,Katie,Roseanne,Satish,Catherine,Krishan,Ajit,Neethika to name a few.
I moderated the blogs, so that i knew who is posting, and that helped me facilate the discussion.I acknowledged all posts and tried to establish link with my content to generate more dialogue for continuing discussion.
The video presentation by my presenter Jagadish Ghimire was very clear,great synchronisation of voice and music with the content.
I must say it was hard to keep track and facilitate for 2 weeks, i had to be watching my blog all days (well not 24/7, but you can say that too).

What went wrong?
The hassle of clicking on link and going to Youtube could have been avoided by embedding the video, rather than the link.Participants could view the presentation but had to come back to blog to comment.This could have created confusion among the partcipants, about posting their thoughts/comments, although my blog clearly requested everybody to have discussion threads under my blog.
The interaction and the collaborative nature of event itself went smooth,however the content/discussions got questioned for its spelling and grammar credibility.So,that was a eye opener.

What did I learn?
I discovered peer-learning with this event and to some extent developed good writing communication skill. I try and re-check my draft, but obviously need to re-read and learn to polish my writing skills in the future.I tried my best to facilitate the event to my ability, and tried to generate rather than create content.

What would I change?
I could have combined the asynchronous activity with a synchronous one, where we get the real time buzz. Agreed about the technical nightmares one can face in a online live environment but hey, it could have enriched the understanding of the topic. We could have achieved the best of both worlds, would have been more effective to have interaction and live question on the topic.
I could have added the video inside my blog ,to void hassle to learners to go forward and come back.

Thanks Sarah for being such a supportive and motivating tutor.I was so lost in the beginning until you rescued me and got me sorted.

Thanks to FOC 09'ers, have learnt a lot from you all.I thoroughly enjoyed all your conferences on various topics.Now, how could you have possibly achieved that at the comfort of your Computer at your convenience and still be learning.

So yes learnt to dive in facilitating communities course(ocean) and came out alive too in the end YAY

P.S:Have to learn to make blogs more interesting and improve writing too in future.

Here's to the never ending journey called "Learning"

1 comment:

  1. As I said in a previous post, I think this event went very well because of the way you advertised, facilitated conversation and sumamried posts as they went along. Great work! :)