I am today beginning a social technology/learning adventure – joining 1300+ others in participating in a massive open online course (MOOC) called Change: Education, learning and technology. Among those joining the course are several friends and colleagues from the Master’s Program in Learning & Organizational Change at Northwestern University.
This MOOC is impressive. Some 35 weeks of content and thought-leadership, designed (in part) to create a snapshot of the state-of-the-art of technology and learning as it stands in 2011/2012. Fair warning from the designers of this event – Dave Cormier, George Siemens and Stephen Downes – that there is simply more content than any one reasonable human being can digest. And in the orientation to the course there are several thoughtful videos from the three exploring this issue (Cormier’s below).
At this moment, what is most intriguing to me is exactly what will drive my path through the content. As an instructor in a graduate program that provides opportunity for innovation in course design, I’ve had the opportunity to explore “stewarding” students through ideas and concepts and encouraging personal discovery of how these ideas and concepts apply to their professional context. But there is definitely a level of steering still going on.
In the MOOC it is all about choosing your own path. I suspect that I’ll jump onto some topics because of some deep-seated geek-attraction instinct (squirrel!! squirrel!!). But I also know that I’ll be influenced by sharing with my friends at MSLOC (we have already connected on a Google+ circle).
Not sure how my path will be determined. It’ll be emergent for sure. But I’ll be paying attention to how this plays out because I sense it will lead to some interesting insights.