Category Archives: Uncategorized

MOOCs in the news

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) seem to be all the rage with college administrators In North America, particularly the United States of America. However many faculty aren’t so sure about them.

For a different, more faculty driven model, see

Share Everywhere

The second morning presentation, A multi-project collaboration to make it easy to create and share content with legs, provided a tool set to easily create online open education resources.
It involves using the open repository at to import and transform your Google Docs, Word or MS Office files or even webpages to an Open Educational platform. See and
Once the materials have been imported they ostensibly can be converted to Wikieducator, and other online tools.
The audio conference is available at

Keynote Speaker – Open Ed 2012

The Keynote Speaker for the conference was Dr. Gardner Campbell. As you can see from his bio at He is quite the Renaissance Man.

He started his talk with this photo of the launch from the Stratosphere

and these quotes.

Academia is to knowledge what prostitution is to love; close enough on the surface but, to the nonsucker, not exactly the same thing.

It may be learning, but it’s not academics.
– A colleague’s response when the presenter first introduced him to the World Wide Web.

The presenter claims that despite academic resistance OER (Open Educational Resources) has won thanks to MOOCs, Coursera, Udacity, edX and Edupunks.


“That is not it at all,
That is not what I meant, at all.
T.S Eliot. The Love Song of . Alfred Prufrock

These initiatives do not fit with the original vision of OER. We are in a double bind. We see the potential of open educational resources, but the actual implementation of it is not what this speaker originally envisioned.

For a better understanding of the issues surrounding OER, the speaker recommended The Children’s Machine: Rethinking School in the Age of the Computer by Seymour Papert and Steps to an Ecology of Mind by Gregory Bateson. Open is an attitude towards systems. He differentiated between Schoolers (i.e., those who school or are schooled) and Yearners (those with a strong desire for something more than schooling or academics). He also recommended To Repair the Ruins a series of essay on Milton as well as Who Am I by Pete Townshend for a better understand of the issues arouond this double bind.

We were presented with Bateson’s Hierarchy of Learning.

Learning Zero: “…is characterised by specificity of response, which right or wrong – is not subject to correction.
Learning 1:”is change in specificity of response by correction of errors of choice within a set of alternatives. ” e.g.,Pavlov, habituation, adaptation.

Learning II: “…is change in the process of Learning I, e.g. a corrective change in the set of alternatives from which choice is made, or it is a change in how the sequence of experience is punctuated.

Learning III:“…is change in the process of Learning II, e.g. a corrective change in the system of sets of alternatives from which choice is made.

Learning IV: “…would be change in Learning III, but probably does not occur in any adult living organism on this earth.”

The hierarchy is discontinuous. Just as a longer B paper does not become an A paper. All communication has this characteristic — it can be magically modified by accompanying communication.”

Double bind may also be the way out.

Beyond access and cost: a primary benefit of open education insofar as it is not merely open but opening, This is the opportunity for networked transcontextualism — a planetary double-take.


Don’t fake the double take!

We were then given examples (places) where he found the double-take happening in a course.

The first example was his course, From Memex to YouTube: Cognition, Learning and the Internet

He created a variation of the Apgar test for class meetings.

Then there is the dackolupatoni experiment.

He closed his presentation with quotes from two poems.

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time. 
     T.S. Eliot — “Little Gidding” (the last of his Four Quartets)

At a Window

Give me hunger,
O you gods that sit and give
The world its orders.
Give me hunger, pain and want,
Shut me out with shame and failure
From your doors of gold and fame,
Give me your shabbiest, weariest hunger!

But leave me a little love,
A voice to speak to me in the day end,
A hand to touch me in the dark room
Breaking the long loneliness.
In the dusk of day-shapes
Blurring the sunset,
One little wandering, western star
Thrust out from the changing shores of shadow.
Let me go to the window,
Watch there the day-shapes of dusk
And wait and know the coming
Of a little love.�

Carl Sandburg

The entire presentation is available online at

The Online Math System

This is a fixed pace and mastery learning course that requires 10 to 20 hours per week to complete in one term.   A paper version of the text is not required. All you need do is purchase access to the publisher’s website at MathXL provides students with personalized and interactive self paced and mastery learning environment. 

  • Personalized and interactive multimedia learning aids include online text, videos, animations and tutorials that take you step-by-step through each problem. A self-paced study plan with set assignment due dates means you monitor your own progress and see what topics need more practice. There is even an Ask My Instructor button that will email a copy of the question you are struggling with along with your questions and comments to the instructor.
  • While the materials are self paced,  you will need to meet assignment due dates to complete the course in one term or less. The online classroom is available to you anytime of the day or night, 24/7. As long as you keep up with the assignment due dates, you can spend as much time as you need on each concept. To avoid late penalties,  work at least three assignments ahead of the due dates. To assist you with this, I will be making the online classroom available to you before the term officially begins. 
  • Mastery means as soon as you demonstrate competency in one unit, you can move on to the next. Thus you can complete the course in less than one term. From Math 052 through 073, once you master one level I can move you on to the next.

Your success in this course will depend on a number of factors including your current level of math skills, your motivation, your learning rate, and how much time you can actually devote to learning math. Depending on your math background, plan on spending 10 to 20 hours per week to complete one course in a four month term. If you have not yet enrolled in the online classroom at, view the information on Gaining Access at this link. Once you have logged in, complete the steps outlined below to demonstrate mastery of each unit:

  1. Start with the Unit Pre-Test. Use the tutorial buttons to master each concept.
  2. Complete the assigned Study Plan/Quiz Me assignments.
  3. Write the post-test.
  4. Finish the unit by successfully completing the Unit Final. You need a score of 75% or better on each of the above to demonstrate mastery.

Repeat the above process for the each unit until you complete the course and are ready for the final exam. Late assignments will result in a zero grade for that assignment. Read more about late penalties here. Click on the links on this page to learn more about any of the hyperlinked topics.

The final exam is written online under invigilated or supervised conditions through an invigilator arranged by the student and approved by the instructor. More details will be found in Announcements area of the online classroom.