15. EpCoP MOOC 11

Goal:

an open learning experience to explore -eportfolios for:

VET practitioners developing a professional e-portfolio to support their CPD needs
(eg industry and professional currency)


Design:

E-portfolio community of practice members collaboratively designed and developed the learnspace where all the 'self-directed' learning could take place.

Together we developed a Ning site for the participants to communicate on a regular basis, send in their progress reports, collect news and invitations to the webinars.

Registrations were opened a month prior to launch in August and by first week we had over 300 registrations. Most of these also joined the Ning community.
Current numbers: registrations 359 community members 229

Communication:

We used our Australia e-Series Blackboard Collaborate virtual classroom for weekly webinars. These were held at two alternate times to suit participants from all over the world and to provide insight into the What, Why, Where, How, So What, Now What and Then What of building and maintaining e-portfolios.

A group of challenge mentors volunteered to facilitate a series of webinars on the specific use of Web 2.0 tools to enhance e-portfolio content.
Current numbers: 20 webinars delivered - recordings are listed here.

Fun elements:

The MOOC was built on the idea of missions and quests and badges to be achieved at each level in a self-managed way. Communications were enhanced by the introduction of MOOC SCOOPs the weekly newsletter; and several web 2.0 tools were used to create engaging content e.g. Radio Epcop was built from voice recordings and published in the learnspace. The MOOCers themselves came up with innovative approaches such as; MOOCmen and MOOCmaids (even an eportfolio each); The EpCoP Case investigated by Detective Ryan Peterovski in a series of 'film noir' vignettes displayed on his blog.

Reflective Practice:

All participants were encouraged to maintain a blog throughout the 8 weeks of the MOOC to reflect on their learning and notify on the progress of their e-portfolio, displaying their achievements badges where relevant. All the blog contributions were aggregated into a NetVibes page for ease of access.

The Design Team also reflected on the progress of the MOOC in a separate blog to keep the reference group informed of MOOC achievements.

Stories from the MOOCers:

Individual feedback has been enlightening and gratifying, to say the least, these have mostly been in the Ning community or private emails to the team. However we are now encouraging final feedback through the use of Voicethread by the EpCoP MOOC survivors.

 Rosa
It has been an honor to be under your leadership and included in the friendship and professionalism of the EpCopMOOC..  This has been the most rewarding experience in my professional career life time.  I would not have been able to participate if it had not been "free".  Thank you that it is Global Free.
I have enjoyed the wonderful and professional leadership from you and the team. It is awesome to have friendships of Global Friends, too.
 these blog postings from participants say it all

http://www.djmtraining.com.au/2011/08/epcop-mooc-welcome-to-world-of-e_04.html

http://mslizzy.global2.vic.edu.au/2011/08/07/week-1-my-understanding-of-eportfolios/

http://mylearningjourneywithecopmooc2011.wordpress.com/
 Kelly

I am continuing with my MOOC learning and will catch-up on missed work by doubling up some weeks. I just realised that this course is coming to an end :( I don't want this to happen. I thoroughly enjoy being part of this community, learning about eportfolios, connecting with such an amazing group each week, networking, observing excellent eLearning practices and witnessing amazing work.

I will continue to work on my eportfolio as part of my lifelong learning journey.

Outcomes:

All involved with this MOOC have learned how to be self-directed learners, open their minds to other tools, consider the importance of the e-portfolio as the centrepiece for their personal web presence and create an e-portfolio structure that will see them through their lifelong learning journey, well at least for the immediate future.

We believe that this approach to learning about  e-portfolios has been beneficial to educators, students and practitioners alike. Something new has been learned by all. We have also managed to capture and maintain the interest of the MOOCers with a team of facilitators and mentors - some troughs and peaks in communications of course - but overall we have created a community. Participants can also choose to join the Facebook group for the EpCoP and the Out of Practice Facebook group. They are all encouraged to remain members of the parent community - the EpCoP.

We have offered a wealth of support and alternative ways of connecting using a twitter stream for #epcop, a Skypers group, a Linked-In group and a Google+ hangout. These streams have emerged from within the MOOC community as self-directed learning strategies.

A comprehensive Resource Kit has also been developed and will continue to grow as a useful store of articles, websites, documentation and blog posts on e-portfolios.

Resources:
  • An EpCoP MOOC guide was created and delivered electronically to all registered participants. This is located in the Resource Kit that was developed for the MOOC.
  • A comprehensive glossary of e-portfolio terms was also produced for the learnspace.
  • The Design team used a googlesite to collaboratively build the learnspace - all of the materials are Creative Commons licensed and we encourage others to make use of them for local e-portfolio practitioners.
  • We used googledocs for planning content in the blog and googleforms for registrations and surveys for the MOOCers.
  • We were funded by the Australian Flexible Learning Framework for the duration of the development of the MOOC, Ning community service fees and startup facilitation. Much of the extra facilitation time (from a team of 14) has been given freely and voluntarily. We have developed a skilled group of Web 2.0 tool tutors/facilitators and they will continue to present for Community Connect in the Australia e-Series in 2011/2012.
  • We were able to invite presenters from the main E-portfolio systems to present for the MOOCers free of charge and we now have a wealth of recorded webinars that can be used and repurposed as teaching tools.
  • Most importantly we have helped to develop awareness, expertise and implementation of E-portfolios for Australian educators and institutions - one of the main driving goals of the Framework's focus on E-portfolios.
Acknowledgements:

Project manager: Allison Miller,  Business Manager E-portfolios, Framework
Design team: Carole McCulloch, Junita Lyon, Sandra Stewart and Pauline Wilson
Challenge mentors: Helen Doyle, Penny Bentley, Pam Ridd, Simon Pankhurst, Christine Dix, Gayle Webster, Mutuota Kigotho, Fiona Ross, Ian Hall, and Manjit Bhamral
359 E-portfolio enthusiasts.

Recommendations:
  1. Acquire funding wherever possible to support the work of the designers/developers/facilitators
  2. Select an enthusiastic design team and supporting team of mentors
  3. Choose collaborative methods and tools and meet frequently online
  4. Use a Smartsheet and a blog to monitor the progress and report back
  5. Ensure that participants are required to register and fill out an initial skills survey as well as a final survey
  6. Engage the participants with fun ways of learning, consistent web presence and opportunities for real time and any time communications
  7. Empower all learners to choose their preferred learning pathway and avoid stipulating specific methods
  8. Direct and guide learners to follow the MOOC in a sequential manner, but also allow different levels of interaction and exploration
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