Reflections on our first class: blogging, contracts, and computer log-ins

This is my fourth (or fifth?) CAE course, and it is nice to walk into a room with so many familiar faces! It was also nice to recognize Dave from the YouTube video that he posted a few weeks ago. I could tell from the calendar (not the 7-10 PM part!) that we weren’t going to have a full schedule of 12, 3-hr class sessions, and therefore, I arrived on Wednesday, primed to have a lot of material covered in a shorter amount of time. Works for me! But then again, I feel moderately comfortable with technology, and my personal objectives for this course centered around learning new strategies for engaging learners via online media/content.

I think the blogging portion of this course is going to be interesting. I was just reading through some posts left by my classmates, and the hardest parts for me are going to be: 1) remembering to check our blog!; and 2) staying terse with my posts and comments. Case in point: I’m already at 166 words! Several of the recent posts expressed a mixture of interest and apprehension with regards to the Learning Contracts that we will be constructing next Wednesday. I too have mixed feelings about this: on the one hand, I appreciate Dave’s initiative in giving us control over our own learning. On the other hand, when I hear people bemoan the fact that everything is broken down into numbers, I think, isn’t that what we do for our own learners? In an ideal world, I would want my learners to want to learn everything, so that marks wouldn’t have to be given. You either pass, or you fail. Since one is driven to succeed, one would pass, and one would have learned a great deal by not having to “worry” about marks. As John (Arsenault) mentioned in his blog-post, we have seen something similar to this concept before, but structured in a different way. I will be curious to see how Dave’s format works in our group of adult learners.

And lastly: don’t forget how to log in to all of our various sites before next Wednesday! Log-in difficulties happen all the time, and I find it a rather humbling experience. This is how our own learners feel when they don’t get something correct the first time around…



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2 thoughts on “Reflections on our first class: blogging, contracts, and computer log-ins

  1. In a sense, to me, it doesn’t really matter how we set up the marking scheme. The only difference I believe is that in a contract we are basically saying up front what mark we want to achieve. If the marking is based on a percentage, we can still avoid doing some of the assignments and we will end up with a grade which we deserve. If I’m happy with a 65 then I may only do the work necessary to achieve this although it may be harder for the student to keep track of his mark throughout the course. Just a thought!!

  2. I’m afraid i’m forced to give you a number grade… hence my need to add it in there. My preference would be to make a minimum effort claim and then negotiate the rest of it from there. but no luck. If i’m going to give you a number grade, then i need some argument for how i’ve reached the number etc…

    I appreciate your willingness to dig in quickly on the work. We’ve got a fair amount to cover over the eight weeks and that much, much easier to do with a positive attitude :)

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