I have not blogged for awhile, partly because I am rather drowning in the mass of materials. I think that I have noticed that as people drop out, the conversations appear to have got more techy but perhaps this is only an illusion. Still, I am here, and afloat, even if I am still taking in great mouthfuls of water with every second stroke.
This week, I am addressing the questions that we were asked to look at:
I do use a VLE at work, but mainly as a repository for course information and lecture notes etc, although in my dept, we also mark electronically which I love, as a)I can write a lot more comments b) it is cleaner and simpler c) there is a permanent record of students work and marks d) there is no need to carry loads of paper around. I have used a course blog, but there is a course facebook page, which should serve the same purpose, and increasingly, students develop their own course FB page which staff cannot join, and which therefore gives them obvious benefits.
This means that there are less choices than with the OCtel platform, but it makes it more manageable as well. Given that many students are just interested in doing enough to pass the course, this is both an advantage and a disadvantage. Given how much I am struggling to keep going I think my sympathies are with the student body at the moment.
A big question is whether University education will survive at all in the Brave New World of instant ( and free) access to the information stream. However, accredited courses do prove that graduates have had the stamina to complete a course of study, and essays etc allow clear stepping stones along the way. It is both more difficult and easier to stay with a course that has no way stones.