Tuesday, January 29, 2013

#EDCMOOC - MOOC Mood - Day 2

The postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies or opinions.


Had to wait an hour to see a doctor for a routine checkup this eve and read the Chandler articles while waiting. Just blogged:

#EDCMOOC - Fave line from D. Chandler readings - Writer Isaac Bashevis Singer said: "we have to believe in free will. We've got no choice."

I'm feeling calmer today about the weirdness of the format of the course. Yesterday, I was a bit on edge all day, thinking of how there was a wildly active parallel universe that I was missing either due to my full-time job or because of my non-European time zone. It agitated me to dip in for just a couple of hours off and on and stimulated me in parallel as I did. And you already heard yesterday how I felt about not getting my few comments voted up.

Posting in the Facebook group, so far, was most gratifying, as a number of my classmates acknowledged me and I made a few new Facebook friends as a bonus. Twitter is a helpful way for me to have a quick snapshot of classmates' reflections, and to share some quick ones myself.

Perhaps the healthiest mood-change I've had is in letting go of a chunk of the anxiety. So what that there are 40,000 enrollees and hundreds of posts to review in the Forum section of the course? Wasn't that what I wanted to experience first-hand?

This MOOC experience is helping me re-consider the ideal learning cohort size. For face-to-face leadership development sessions, conventional wisdom was that if we had more than 30 managers per cohort, some would get left behind, but every now and then, we had to do it. Here, the scale is so massive, it's ludicrous to even wonder about who's getting left behind...and yet one of the instructors did a wonderful job, I noticed, in the Forum, of acknowledging and linking a number of people's posts -- just not mine yet, but I'm not bitter :-)

Here's the train of thought I'm having that's the most interesting to me right now: This afternoon, a colleague asked the number of virtual participants we'd had for a Livestream session we'd produced for a VP's all-hands meeting recently; it was 574 worldwide. Then she asked me, What was the percentage of the participants who were active in the live chat. In the morning, I may go and count the different names in the live-chat transcript...or I may try to help my colleague see that there's no use in trying to gauge the learning value of the session based on live-chat activity, since the majority of participants lurked, just like they appear to be doing with this MOOC so far. I think her jaw will drop when I tell her that we have 40,000 enrollees and just dozens or scores or hundreds of active post-ers. The 40K number is powerful.

Finally, I want to mention that another way I'm managing to lessen my learning anxieties: not to worry about the parallel universe as much as focusing on the reading assignments. I'll be back in the Forum when I have something substantial to say on our topic. Meanwhile, I'll likely keep posting my observations and feelings here and then letting people know they're here, as well as taking peeks at the EDCMOOC on Facebook and Twitter and getting to know some more of my classmates. #edcmooc


fran said...

interesting comments! thanks

Sarah Siegel said...

Fran, thanks for your kind feedback. Will read your latest blog post after reading Prensky, as I haven't yet and don't want any spoilers :-)

Sarah Siegel said...

Since not everyone will see your blog, I'll repeat my comment here:

I had promised to read your blog post that referred to your impressions of the Prensky reading, which I’ve done, and also peeked at the rest of your posts so far. I agree that it’s not a useful or salient metaphor anymore — digital natives and immigrants.

Also, I agree that it’s important to take time off when you want to. I did, from blogging, but found that even so, at an evening gathering — for a colleague’s retirement, I was still compelled to describe some of my experience with this MOOC, my first one, to a colleague who had not yet heard of MOOCs. She thought it sounded cool.