Adventures in Online Education

On the left, you see me peeking over the top of my laptop in the picture I used to announce my return to student life on Facebook on September 12, 2018: my first  day of engagement with the Professional Certificate in Online Education (PCOE) program with the University of Wisconsin at Madison. I was primarily motivated to enroll with the belief that the course would familiarize me with good practices of online education, which I was eager to adapt for the courses in architectural history that I have taught for many years, but had proposed to teach in a hybrid mode. I was also interested to find out what it's like to take an online class, since that was not an experience open to me when I was enrolled in college from the mid-1980s onward.

PCOE met all of those aspirations, and then some. More than learning tools and tricks of the trade, I am now well-versed in the particular challenges and potentials of online education; my general approach to pedagogy (applicable to traditional face-to-face settings, as well as online/hybrid) has become much sharper, as well.

I am completing the course with a very profound commitment to the capacity for online/digital technologies to enhance college teaching and learning, recognizing that it's unthinkable that we would avoid these options if we were inventing universities and programs of study today. Although it is time-consuming and challenging work, it is to the benefit of our students, disciplines, institutions, and higher education as a whole, to harness their potential. 

I hope you will enjoy reviewing the work I have completed for PCOE in this ePortfolio. By clicking through the links to the left, you can navigate through the following sections:

01: Personal Profile
A very brief biography
02: Course Information
Introduction to the course I used as a case study for applying lessons of PCOE: ARC 331, History of Architecture from the Industrial Revolution to the Digital Age
03: Readiness Reflections
Observations on my preparedness as a learner to take PCOE as an online course, on the basis of questionnaires.

04: Teaching Self-Assessment & Goals for PCOE
Observations on my preparedness to teach online.

05: Learning Objectives and Assignment    
First focused assignment to develop ARC 331 by writing learning objectives for the course, its units, and activities related to one unit-level objective.

06: Discussion Activity and Facilitation Plan
Detailed design for one activity in ARC 331, considering specific learning objectives, resources necessary, character of discussion group, expectations for student engagement, timeline, and evaluation.

07: Design for the Needs of Learners and Learner Profile
Overarching consideration of addressing learner needs, with three specific concerns for my class and its students (building group knowledge, versatile learning, and types of interaction) and, on a second page, a profile of learners in my class.

08: Online Activity and Facilitation Plan
Activity overview, structure, and details for the semester project in ARC 331.

09: Unit Overview: Pedagogical Approach
In-depth description of pedagogical approach to ARC 331 as a whole, including consideration of alignment of unit objectives with scaffolded course objectives, organization of unit tasks and skills, sequence of activities and assessments, engagement with the primary instructional components, rationale for the pedagogical approach, and rationale for the chosen media

10: Implementation Checklist
Implementation plan, with special attention including having a "plan B" to address massive technical difficulties, ensuring adequate guidance for student use of the tools, and helping students accept innovation and change.

11: Unit and Activity Assessment Plan
The assessment plans for ARC 331, including the various methods and their characteristics, and detailed assessment plan for the semester project with rubric and rationale.

12: Self-Assessment
Self-evaluation of my ePortfolio as an artifact of my learning in the PCOE program.

13: Final Reflections
Summary considerations of self-assessment and next steps for continual improvement.

14: Journal
Short outline that captures the most significant insights that I have captured in my lengthier notes from the course.

Subpages (2): Resources Tools to Try