ONL221 is an online course on open networked learning. These reflections are part of the course assignment. This one is on topic five – Lessons learned and future practice

Suggestions for reflections

What are the most important things that you have learnt through your engagement in the ONL course? Why?

What are you going to do as a result of your involvement in ONL? Why?

A main finding of attending the ONL course is: Eighty hours is simple not enough time for meaningful participation. And all warnings of our facilitator (“do not immerse yourselves too much, be aware of your time“) seem to point into the same direction: There is something in the construction of the course that provokes this experience. To me this is the combination of more outcome oriented course requirements together with the invitation of an almost self organized group learning journey.

Whenever a quantitative outcome is set as a way of monitoring and being able to assess learning then outcome focused perspectives are invited by design. In this case the scaffolding of both group work and individual assignments as blogs and commenting on other blogs represented these requirements. On top of that, it is left open to cooperating institutions to set different expectations when it comes to institutional learners. With suggested time credits of 80 hours it should not be astonishing that participants will chose the product oriented way. But is this the intention of the course?

In contrast to that, facilitated problem based learning groups were, presumably depending on the facilitators specific introduction, more or less free to follow their own collective learning journeys around given scenarios, scaffolded only by the fish model. Since I have followed all invitations to webinars and discussions across different groups I have understood that there is quite a variation between different groups approaches. Whereas some seemed to work more outcome oriented, time efficient and in a getting the tasks done mode, other groups, like my own group 7, really enjoyed the process of getting to know each other, building relationships and trying to be in the process of learning and presence with each other and the topic at hand. Our cultural, professional and digital literacy differences evolved into a truly helpful, caring and collaborative learning environment. To me, this is something course organizers hope for, to sparkle the light of collaborative learning and community building. If we call this the more process way, then maybe a question is

how can course requirements be adapted to more focus on achieving process types of outcome?

Again I want to compare to the Art of Hosting approach: In my own experience, this group cohesion is more often than not the case for an Art of Hosting hosting team. My understanding is that this is due to the central role of co-creation of the purpose and the shared practices of self hosting, being hosted, hosting others and sharing as an ongoing practice. It is not obvious to me whether the facilitation of ONL groups has similar practices in place? As a consequence of that I would wish then to ask for permission to enter the facilitation learning space of the ONLverse in order to learn more about it and maybe

reflect upon difference between facilitation and hosting  as another level of insight to ONL development.

On the other side, ONL with its scenario build approach is interesting to offer the AoH community as a new format to combine the mainly synchronous structure of community learning assisted by facebook post with a more systematic blended format.

Finally, since the topic included allusions on future practice, I attended a webinar on digital futures last week and earlier on a session on future prototyping. There are quite a variety of future studies methods that I did not know of. Maybe an activity for future ONL courses and this specific topic could be

to arrange a speculative design prototyping activity with the ONL course 2040 as a starting point?
Facilitation and Hosting