Today I have spent some time thinking about a course I will teach next fall for the Global Online Academy. I have mentioned GOA before in a post entitled, “A Shout-Out to Partnerships: Their Relevance in A Progress Culture.” As opposed to the other courses at GOA that serve students drawn from the member schools, this course will be designed as professional development for school administrators, and it will seek to help us make sense of the exploding impact of online learning. Titled, “The Promise of Online Learning,” we will strive to determine that promise and to use many of the tools available in an online learning environment in order to accomplish that goal.I hope to use “Ross All Over the Map” as a means to share both some of my planning leading up to the actual course, as well as some of the artifacts of the course created as our work together unfolds. That said, my thinking is at such an early stage that I am uncertain the extent to which I will have valuable things to share, particularly at this early moment in the planning processCurrently I am thinking about a few questions that I am certain will garner the class’s attention to one degree or another:
- For what purposes will schools need to grow toward online learning?
- How will schools grow in healthy and sustainable ways toward making online learning a significant factor for most, if not all, students?
- How will online learning serve to democratize educational opportunities?
- What models for online learning will find the most traction in an increasingly crowded marketplace?
- How can an online course create a dynamic learning environment that allows for purposeful interaction not only between students and the instructor but also between a student and other students?
- How will school leadership build the requisite credibility regarding online learning in order to make allies out of our boards, our faculties, our families, and most importantly, our students.
In future posts I hope to share more about what I learn regarding several models for online learning. A different approach than GOA is Coursera—I have provided a screen shot below of their landing page.
One additional question that needs to be addressed: how does online learning impact our schools’ financial model. This is something I plan on working on: bridging the gap between what smart educators like you and others are developing, and what the budget and finance types like me can do to help make sure it is successful. Hopefully we can collaborate on bringing these threads together.
J Ross Peters says
Absolutely, Grant. I have a feeling that my original list will continue to grow for some time, particularly as we begin to sort through our preconceived notions regarding the way all the pieces–pedagogical, cultural, and financial–will fall together.