Earlier this summer (yes, it’s still summer!–that is, until September 22) I took Edu PAES 8893.40, otherwise known as Moving Online from the Traditional Classroom: Assuring Quality in Development and Design. Taught by Joni Tornwall, a Digital Union colleague, the course–intended to be an exemplar for students enrolled in it, by meeting Quality Matters standards–specifically addressed design and quality assurance in the online environment.
I registered for the Moving Online course because I wanted to learn in-depth about Quality Matters. By the end of the abbreviated summer term, however, I had learned so much more than that.
The scope of the Moving Online course content is specifically focused on the Quality Matters standards. Although we students had plenty of questions about the QM standards, I noticed early on that we wanted to know as much–perhaps more!–about types of learning technologies that would help us meet these standards. Joni went to great lengths to expose us to some easy-to-use technologies that were likely to promote, rather than interfere with, students’ online learning.
This illuminated a fascinating challenge: how can a course teach people about Quality Matters principles, and demonstrate possibilities for their application in a variety of contexts, without also providing instruction on how to operationalize that application? In other words, if you want people to learn…really learn, at a deep and meaningful level…how can you teach them about what to do, without also teaching them how to do it?
It’s probably obvious: I think good teaching inherently involves a balance of both. What do you think? What else needs to be included in the mix?
To learn more about Quality Matters standards and the Moving Online course, check out these blog posts: