Vol. 15 : No. 11< >
Formats for Interaction
Rollinghoff - firstname.lastname@example.org
My main professional activity is the creation and support of a learning community of teachers using new learning technologies (NLT) in the Swiss Universities of Applied Science. (More about me at: http://it-resources.icsa.ch/) We are doing this in the framework of a 3 years research grant under the label of 'Forum New Learning' - www.fnl.ch - in an overall project called Swiss Virtual Campus with 75 members in the FNL-Usergroup. As part of the knowledge sharing we provide some basic material to stimulate the creativity of teachers using NLT. Currently I am especially interested in learning tasks.
In my view the aim of learning tasks is to guide learners at specific point of their learning process to deepen the processing of the learning material. Thus Learning Tasks are the work horse of the learning process.
I try to collect a number of examples of such learning task in different areas. Currently I am concentrating on Learning in virtual discussion forum and it would be a big help if I could get critics and comments to this undertaking. If some of you would contribute a 'forum learning task example' that has worked well in one of your courses I would be very pleased to add it onto the list below. Also the link to a site with other examples would be greatly appreciated.
Most of the items below steam from teaching tradition and I don't have the means to retrace them to their originators. If I quote names I do this to lead back to a teacher having successfully used the task type.
Examples of forum tasks given to students (each representing a different type of task:
1) The Four Noun. Introduction Present your-self in the Forum-Topic 'Cafe' using 4 nouns which are in one way or the other representative for your person. I start right away: This example from Jack A. Cummings was found at: http://www.ihets.org/learntech/distance_ed/fdpapers/1998/52.html
2) Abstract. Please produce an abstract of one of the articles in the Table of Contents, that has not been treated yet by another member of the course. Post a first message with the article's title in your messages' title to reserve the item. Send your abstract then as reply to your reservation. Use the Forum topic: 'Abstracts'.
3) Learning Diary. At the end of this module please write down a sort of learning diary:
What did you learn through the module, what did you experience that advanced your learning, what do you see as your progress in the past period of learning. Use the Forum topic: 'Learning Diary'.
A more detail presentation of this task can be found among others at: http://eno2000.joensuu.fi/html/diary.htm
4) Opinion. Please formulate your opinion concerning the case of today's course and place it under the Topic: 'My opinion'. Read the opinion of others and react to at least 3 of them.
5) 3 Pros - 3 Cons. Imaging 3 reasons why the technology presented in Paragraph would positively affect your professional live in the future and post it under the Topic. Imagine 3 reasons why the technology presented in paragraph would negatively affect your professional live in the future and post it under the Topic Icons. Read other members opinion and react to them.
6) Collection the main points. After reading the paper ëní present one point that appears important to you and explain why. Make sure that your point has not been posted already.
Otherwise chose another point. This should provide us in short time with all the important points in the text.
7) Exam preparation.
Phase 1: Collection of questions. Imagine 3 questions that might come up in the exam (in three weeks) and post them under 3 different headings in the Exam-Topic.
Phase 2: Evaluation of the questions. Read questions formulated by others and react in the following way to at least 6 of them. Either try to reformulate them, if you think they are not valid or indicate your approval.
Phase 3: Answering questions (After the questions have been cleaned) Answer 3 of the questions. Please evaluate at least 6 of the answers either with a detailed comment or with one of three qualifications: wrong, OK, good.
This example was contributed to the list by: Andreas Ninck: http://www.isbe.ch/~ninck/.
Voice: +41 21 803 58 00 (leave message)
Mobile: +41 78 811 60 30 (don't leave message)
Learning Lab: http://www.hta-be.bfh.ch/learninglab
Forum New Learning: http://www.fnl.ch
New Learning Technology: http://it-resources.icsa.ch