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Moocified!

My journey into the land of moocs.
by

Karen Young

on 26 July 2013

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Transcript of Moocified!

My journey to becoming moocified or How I jumped down the rabbit hole
I'm participating in Connected Learning mooc right now. As I was watching Make with Me #3 make a map hangout they asked how did people come to the clmooc community? Well I have been documenting my learning journey for a while but I hadn't used Prezi yet so I thought, this tool would work well for the mapping make we've been asked to do.
Why Moocs?
In August of last year I was offered a job as an instructional designer. I accepted though I am more oriented to face to face teaching (I like to talk- a lot!)

Since I was designing online instruction I wanted to see what was out there and was it sound educationally. "Hmmmm. What's this? A mooc? And it's free?" So of course I jumped in. The first mooc I took was Coursera's "Introduction to Finance." What I found was an educational disaster in the making.
MoocMooc
So at the end of DNLE a few of the people I had begun to follow provided a list of upcoming educational moocs. One of them was MoocMooc provided by Hybrid Pedagogy. A one week mooc it was all about connected learning and creating. So I followed a couple of people (Roz Hussin, for one) over to MoocMooc and Bam!!!Pow!!
I was sucked into a continuous learning ride. Start using twitter, do play in Google docs with other people, what's better? a cmooc or an xmooc? What is learning? What are you writing? Submit your blog. Connect your RSS feed. Connect ! Connect! Connect!
ETMOOC
I heard about ETMOOC from people taking MoocMooc so I thought, "Why not?" So I joined. And it was during this mooc that I stopped being a lurker and ended up fully participating. I was a connected learner. Hybrid Pedagogy's #TVSZ helped me master twitter (that and tweetdeck.) I joined my first #chat. I created, I commented, I gave feedback and I wrote. I began to follow more people and people began to follow me. I started to do the DS106 TDC for fun. I was using Google+. At the end of ETMOOC I was confident enough to co-create a reading blogger group. My professional learning network had grown and I had unleashed my creativity.
Moocified!
What have I got from being connected?
A support network for professional development
Honest feedback for products and ideas
Relationships with other educators
Access to new ideas and divergent opinions
A catalyst for my imagination
Friends!

Introduction to Finance
Coursera's intentions were good, but the execution was poor. The forum was clunky to use (and still is.) Worst of all it was not moderated which meant that it quickly degenerated into a slug fest (they've changed this.) The lectures were entertaining but had little relationship to the actual questions students were required to complete. Cheating was rampant and supported through the forums and other social media like Facebook (this is when they introduced the honour code.) Student pleas for help went unanswered. There were, after all, over 100,000 students in the space. Educationally, it was a disaster.
Designing a New Learning Environment
In the interest of being fair though I decided to try a different mooc offered on a different platform. I decided to stick with an educational mooc this time. So I enrolled in Designing a New Learning Environment through Venture Lab. A totally different experience! Maybe because the forum was moderated (though still clunky to use), maybe it was because we were grouped into teams and maybe it is because it was a topic I was interested in, but I really enjoyed this mooc. I learned a lot, it was well organized (though still rigid with set dates for assignments, etc.) and lo and behold I began to form relationships!
Lurkers Unite
So, like all of us who have fallen down the rabbit hole of connected moocs, I found MoocMooc completely overwhelming. Like a bather afraid to plunge into cold water, I was dipping a toe in but not yet entering the water. I was, in short, a lurker. I'd participate as far as I was comfortable but no further. I tried all the software that was suggested, but Twitter? I tweeted but there was no one answering me back. Useless! I did a vlog. No response. Ugh! But I was hooked, harpooned, netted and entwined. Unbeknownst, I had begun the transformation.
Post ETMOOC
Since the end of ETMOOC I have remained connected with my PLN (something I was afraid I wouldn't maintain.) I've joined other moocs, including a few from Coursera. I belong to a vlog group called Open Spokes (Joe Dillion is a member which is how I heard about clmooc.) I've hosted Google+ hangouts. I've led #chats. I've written articles and even created an Unconference topic for Hybrid Pedagogy. I am comfortable getting online and approaching my large network of learners for help and support. I can see the use of connected learning for both teaching, training and learning. And while I still find connecting my RSS feed from my blog a complete pain (don't ask me why, I don't know) I wouldn't have it any other way.
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