Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Free bidding for funding seminars for early researchers #PhD #EU #funding

While I am nearing the end of my PhD journey (which is basically: 'type until you drop' and 'what do you mean there is an outside world with real people?'), I am now confronted with: what happens next. I am lucky to have some options (one as a pedagogical adviser which I like), and I also applied for a Marie Curie-Sklodowska fellowship (a highly acclaimed 3 year academic scholarship). But to be honest funding is a main issue for any academic. Which is why I am happy that the KMI (Knowledge Media Institute of The Open University) has made two free webinars available which focus on the act of bidding for funding. Including why you should apply as well as how.

The bidding for funding seminars are aimed at doctoral students as well as early researchers, so an interesting and timely mix. Gladly sharing the description:

"The Bidding for Funding: Opportunities for Students workshop aims to provide an overview of some of the major sources of funding for research and knowledge transfer within UK and EU available to postgraduate research students. It will deal with funding to support their phd projects as well as looking at opportunities to support their research beyond their phd.  Dr Hitesh Patel will provide an overview. The workshop will also provide an opportunity to hear from Dr Sam Eden in the Dept of Physical Sciences, Science Faculty. Dr Eden will share his experience of securing external funding through a range of schemes to develop their academic career. He currently holds an EPSRC Accelerator Fellowship and also had funding from an EU Marie Curie Fellowship. There may also be an opportunity to hear from a PhD student and learn from them about how they have gone about sourcing funding for their phd project. The workshop will cover topics such as:
  • OU support for seeking external funding and sourcing funding opportunities
  • major sources of UK and EU funding
  • submitting proposals
  • developing external funding bids – opportunity to look at some successful and unsuccessful proposals and discuss and review these
  • questions and answer
Select from replays below to look at the recordings (approx 50 min).
10:00 am Dr Hitesh Patel
11:00 am Dr Sam Eden

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

#CALRG16 Lightning presentations – quick topics

Interesting start using non-text assessments in online courses. Creative non-text artefacts for assessment use. Presented by Soraya Kouadri Mostefaoui based on research that has started in 2010. Set of 6 criteria. Content criteria: meeting the brief, factual accuracy & understanding. Presentation criteria: appropriateness of components used, ordering of ideas, technical level, and narrative. Soraya is looking for people with similar interests or who have already implemented similar non-text assessments in their courses, so feel free to contact her (Her linkedIn profile here).

Chenxi Li reporting on Chinese undergraduate students' online English language learning experiences and perspectives. This is a study of synchronous English language classes through audiographic conferencing tools in China. What are Chinese students’ online language learning experiences of audio graphic conferencing classrooms and what do they think about them? What are the major problems for audio graphic conferencing ELT classes in China? This study attempts to answer these questions above through questionnaires and interviews with online English teachers and learners. An innovative data collection method proved to be very effective which combines an online survey tool (Survey Star) with a popular social networking mobile App (WeChat). The quantitative findings will be mainly reported in this presentation: big classes in one conferencing class: so almost no students get individualised feedback, tech problems, people are still happy about the overall experience. many students complain that teachers cannot deal with the tech problems (not always correct assumption), 86% students say they have interacted but it does not compute with the actual interaction stats. So maybe their interpretation of interaction is limited to very small, basic interacting: "hello". Some students feel it is hard to concentrate. lack of online teacher training in these contexts.

Ralph Mercer talks energetically about online learning: an exploration of the last 20 inches. The last 20 inches referring to the last bit where students have learned and interact with teachers/trainers... Can we built a system where learners self-assess and develop learning agency, as this will affect learning positively. What are the key attributes for starting to self-assessment: self-report good and bad learning day, to learn to build better learning days in general. Looking for common threads using self-regulated, cognitive factors. If the student is more motivated, it will result in better learning. So moving towards Learning Wellness Framework. It is a personalised tool, where the students themselves built a sort of fitbit for learning, for themselves. And which they can compare to external feedback or people afterwards: e.g. teachers, trainers expectations. Ralph's abstract: "My research will look at the physical and social spaces that surround online learners and explores how the attributes of those personal learning space influences online learning habits and effect learning goal achievement. From this research I intend to demonstrate that the adoption of a learning wellness framework could increase self-regulated learning habits and minimize the influence of personal learning spaces. Learning Wellness is described as the convergence of personal learning informatics and self-regulated learning combined with physical/emotional wellness principles to persuade (nudge) learners to develop self-agency and learning skills to succeed in the online learning environments ."

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

#CALRG methods & findings on Self-Directed Learning in FutureLearn #MOOC #SDL

This morning, during the CALRG conference, I shared some slides describing the methods and main findings on informal self-directed learning inside FutureLearn MOOCs. In hindsight, I had better added extra information on my findings, less on the rationale behind the methods. So to balance the presentation, I added a couple of slides related to each of the 5 learning components comprising the FutureLearn learning experience as perceived by the participants, and as their data was interpreted by me.

My study looks at adult learners with at least 3 years of experience in online learning (could be actively using social media, having engaged in online courses (elearning or mooc or spoc...)). And I wanted to understand how these learners self-directed their informal learning inside of FutureLearn MOOCs. The initial findings pointed towards five components influencing the learning process: context, individual & social learning, technology, organizing learning and individual characteristics. However, once each learning component was investigated to see which were the most influential inhibitors and enablers of learning, two main inhibitors or enablers of learning emerged: intrinsic motivation, embedded in the individual characteristics of the learner, and personal learning goals, which influenced how the learner organised their learning. Although motivation and learning goals were categorized to one specific learning component, each of these inhibitors/enablers of learning influenced each of the other learning components as well.

#CALRG Keynote Allison LittleJohn professional and digital learning #liveblog @allisonl

Allison Littlejohn opened the CALRG conference day focusing on FutureLearn MOOCs. The keynote had two objectives to keynote: showcase work from OU, and encourage at the end the contributions add to the body of knowledge.

Professionals learn for present and future work.

Littlejohn & Margaryon (2013) technology-enhanced professional learning (triangle with learning in the middle and learning processes, work practices ad tech use.
Driver for learning is tasks, work-processes.
Formal and informal learning: Eraut (2000 – 2004) learning can be intentional (formal, non-formal) and unintentional (recognised, unacknowledged).
Context, resources … and their impact on learning.
Self-agency, driving learning from your own perspective is central to both self-directed as well as self-regulated learning. Learning work is dynamic, so there is a distinction between learning as a student and learning as a professional.
SRL factors: self-efficacy, goal setting (adapting according to need), task strategy, task interest (motivation), learning strategy (ability to integrate new with existing knowledge), self-satisfaction and evaluation, help seeking, learning challenge (resilience to challenge).  
Learning opportunities such as workplace context influence learning activities.
Interesting in study Littlejohn is the profile with negative help-seeking, overlap with individual learner witness.

Key factors in MOOC learning

Context counts (introduction to data science), Hood Littlejohn, milligan (2015) context counts.

Motivation matters (introduction to data science). External motivation for (self-perceived) low SRL,   intrinsic motivation for (self-perceived) high SRL. The latter not necessarily following the course structure, but learning what they needed in terms of learning goals. Emotional language difference in terms of how they share their learning. The low SRL tend to follow all the course elements, while high SRL select more often. Help seeking: Qualitative difference in terms of high SRL and low SRL, as high SRL tend to be less present in forums, yet more goal-oriented in seeking help (in-side AND outside course), including network peers outside of the course. While low SRL were active in forums, yet less focused.
Goal setting was different for low SRL and high SRL.
Milligan, littlejohn, hood, learning in MOOCs, a comparison study, proceedings of the European Stakeholder Summit on experiences and est practices I and around MOOCs (EMOOCs2016).

Integrate to innovate: we must integrate informal and formal (Tynjala, 2008). Delphi study on MOOCQ – MOOC quality. Quality based on the learner experience, is a unique experience, and a huge challenge in terms of quality measures. (eg. Semantic analysis, how people discuss what they are learning, Helen Crump). From a government perspective the quality post-MOOC is important in terms of return on investment towards society (employment, life quality…). The way quality is measured is also a Power measurement, as quality perception is related to power dynamics. 

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Free papers on mobile learning from #IMLF2016 conference #mlearning

This is a really wonderful set of papers that encompass the latest mobile learning realities and implementations. The proceedings were disseminated before the actual IMLF2016 conference start in Bangkok, providing a nice bit of reading.

Papers covered in the proceedings :

  • Empathic Technologies and Virtual, Contextual and Mobile Learning in VR/AR/MR Environments
  • Mobilizing the Troops: a Review of the Contested Terrain of App-Enabled Learning
  • Moving Toward a Mobile Learning Landscape: Presenting a Mlearning Integration Framework
  • Enhancing A Mobile and Personalized Learning Platform Through Facial Analytics and Interactive Quizzes
  • Using wearable technology to improve the acquisition of new literacies
  • A Snapshot of Teacher Educators’ Mobile Learning Practices
  • The growing tendency of mobile-assisted language learning development in Kazakhstan
  • The QR Code→ as a Mobile Learning Tool for Labor Room Nurses at the San Pablo Colleges Medical Center
  • Teachers’ Readiness in Using Mobile Devices for Mathematics Teaching and Learning: A Case Study in Banten Province, Indonesia
  • The Effect of Multimedia Blurb on Second Language Narrative Reading Comprehension
  • Developing Hong Kong Community College Students’ Digital Literacy through Digital Storytelling
  • The role of Universitas Terbuka-Indonesia as an Institution of Higher Education in Establishing the Existence of the Unitary Republic of Indonesia through Multicultural Education
  • LOWA operator in application on online student assessment
  • The Development of An Open Educational Resources (OER) Model based on Connectivism Theory to Enhance Knowledge Sharing between Thai OER and Malaysian OER
  • Utilization of Online Radio for Learning Media. Case study at Universitas Terbuka
  • Design and adoption factors of an m-learning application to support self-exploratory guide visit
  • The Impact and Benefits of Internet Usage in Presidential Election Campaign

I only started reading the proceedings, but for all of you looking at integrating mobile learning into a learning environment for all levels (learner, teacher, society), based on a combination of mLearning frameworks and latest insights, have a look at Helen Crompton's paper on "Moving Toward a Mobile Learning Landscape: Presenting a Mlearning Integration Framework", I can sure understand why she is one of the keynote speakers. Every page got me thinking and gave me new ideas related to my own interests. To give you an idea, I am adding the abstract of her paper here:
Mobile devices transcend the educational affordances provided by conventional tethered electronic and traditional learning. However, empirical findings show that educators are not integrating technology effectively into the curriculum. In this study, a thematic synthesis methodology was used to develop and present a framework for thinking about the integration of mobile devices in teaching and learning. The mobile learning (mlearning) integration framework is comprised of four main parts: beliefs, resources, methods, and purpose. These four areas are elucidated to reveal the many sub-components that determine how technology is integrated. An ecological framework is then presented to demonstrate how the individual parts of the initial framework operate through a complex, interconnected network of systems involving personal and environmental factors.

Monday, 23 May 2016

5 week free xAPI course by experts, starting 26 May 2016 #xAPI

Online xAPI course, provided by the xAPI developers. You can pre-register for the course now, and it goes live from the 26 May 2016 (until 30 June). Full details are available on Course Hubpage on the Curatr website.

Join this MOOC to explore both the technical realities and the strategic possibilities of the xAPI. If you want to write your first xAPI statement and understand the difference between an Activity Type and a Context Extension, this is the place to be.
Equally, if neither of these things mean a darn thing, we are the community that will help you make sense out of your data strategy, and your roadmap for the medium term.
This MOOC will be open to contribution and allow you to explore the content and conversations that best fit your needs.

Starting late-May, the course will run for 5 weeks with full facilitation and a series of live events throughout June, and then remain open for the rest of the year. The conversation has already started on Twitter,  using the course ID as a hashtag #LearnxAPI – so why not head over to see what’s being said and to lend your voice to the conversation.

Here’s a quick rundown of what you can expect:

Demo access to the next version of Learning Locker

We’re running a demo version of Learning Locker v2 alongside this MOOC and you can connect up your activity to the LRS to get a feel for the next generation of Learning Locker. V2 isn’t ready for Open Source release yet, so you’re getting a head-start on the crowd by joining the MOOC.

Format & Events

Same as last year, we’ll be running two streams - one that covers xAPI strategy, and another which focuses on technical aspects.
We go live on Thursday May 26 to give you a few days to get started on the material before starting up 4 weeks of live events where we’ll be taking a more in-depth look at some of the key themes with a number of experts from across the globe:
  • Week 1 - Megan Torrance shares her been-there-done-that advice on getting started with the xAPI without breaking the bank
  • Week 2 - Sean Putman steers you through your xAPI-conformant Authoring Tool options, sharing best practice and advice along the way
  • Week 3 - James Ballard gives a view from down-under, discussing xAPI adoption in the Asia Pacific region and how vendors are working with clients to adopt more xAPI-enabled technologies
  • Week 4 - Aaron Silvers updates on the new Data Interoperability Standards Consortium (DISC) which aims to bring standardised conformance testing to ensure that vendors saying they ‘do’ xAPI, really do know their stuff.

Welcome to Learn xAPI 2016 #learnxAPI from HT2 on Vimeo.

Friday, 20 May 2016

Free multilingual MOOC opportunity for 1st time MOOC organisers #EUmoocs

This is a wonderful opportunity for anyone with a clear MOOC idea, but still wondering which platform to use. The EMMA platform supports multiple languages, which includes an automated translation of transcripts of your MOOC content to the other languages (English, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Estonian). 

The platform uses a wide array of learning analytics and survey tools, peer assignment options and a student toolbox.

20 MOOCs will be selected out of all the proposals that are sent in. To participate (= sending in your MOOC proposal), you only need to provide the usual contact information, a short MOOC description, your community of interested learners (for promotional purposes), and the languages you will use.
Deadline for submitting your proposal: 30 May 2016, although the deadline is close by, the information needed is doable in a short time span. Just do it, this is a great opportunity to have access to a great MOOC provider with multiple language options for free.

More information and the form to fill in if you want to participate can be found here. And quickly sharing some of their information:

What is EMMA?EMMA is a 30-month pilot action supported by the European Commission that provides an innovative system for the delivery of free, open, online courses (MOOCs) in multiple languages.
Hosting for selected MOOCs will be guaranteed for free until May 2017.
Benefits that you can have for free
  • Free hosting of your MOOC on the EMMA platform.
  • Use of the automated translation system for your videos and lesson texts (8 languages available).
  • Use of tools for peer assignment and student toolbox creation.
  • Use of learning analytics, tracking and ad hoc survey tools.
  • Use of the Blog.
  • The support of a professional communication service for student recruitment and institutional visibility.
  • Access to a community of MOOC providers willing to share their know-how and experience.
What is expected from you
  • Willingness to give feedback on the EMMA experience.
  • Willingness to edit automatic transcriptions and translations.
  • Willingness to collaborate on EMMA activities.
Submit the Request for participation FORMEMMA evaluation committee will select 20 MOOCs from amongst those submitted within 7 days of the closing date of the selection period according to the following criteria:
  1. Reputation of the teacher/expert/institution affiliated to a discipline.
  1. Presence of an active community linked to the teacher/expert/institution.
  1. Number of languages in which the MOOC will be delivered.
Only submissions received by the deadline will be considered.
Should your proposal be selected, our team will support you in the delivery of your MOOC.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Call for papers in Hawaii and Germany on innovative #EdTech #CfP

Two calls for papers/proposals below:

Open Educa Berlin or OEB2016
Conference dates: 30 November - 2 December 2016.
Deadline for submitting a proposal: 1 June 2016.
Submission page can be found here.
The OEB conference gathers over 2000 participants from around the world. It is inspiring, as well as a great networking conference. The theme of 2016 is 'Owning Learning'. Tomorrow’s learning is about ownership. We will own our learning. We will control what, where, when and how we learn. We will access, link, combine, interpret and interact with knowledge. We will be empowered as never before. We will make learning work for us. OEB 2016 is all about the new world of the empowered learner - a world in which learning is owned by learners.

Hawaii International Conference on Systems Sciences
Conference dates: 4 - 7 January 2017.
Deadline for submissions: 15 June 2016.
Dan Suthers, Maarten De Laat and Caroline Haythornthwaite invite papers for the Learning within Digital and Social Media mini track at the Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, (HICSS-50).

Pasting their call here:
"We solicit papers on how human learning takes place via interactive and social processes enabled or supported by digital and social media. We seek to bridge disciplines and research communities between system and learning sciences, so within this scope a broad range of research questions, learning settings, and theoretical and methodological traditions will be considered. Contributions may include new design approaches, theoretical perspectives, learning analytic techniques, policy implications and/or other research results relating to the relationship between digital and social media and learning. Studies may be situated in formal or informal learning settings, and we particularly encourage studies of learning "in the technological wild".

The shared theme across accepted papers will be on relationships between human learning activities and the technologies used. Topics of particular interest include:

* how learning takes place in networks, crowds, teams and communities that exist on and through the WWW and digital and social media;

* how the affordances of technological systems influence or are appropriated for learning via social processes, and how design of affordances can leverage these influences;

* how learning is (or can be designed to be) distributed and coordinated across multiple digital and social media;

* learning practices at the nexus of distributed work, socializing, and knowledge sharing;

* learning analytics in digital and social media: how to understand learning via the traces people leave in social media;

* new trends in learning and digital and social media, including issues and opportunities relating to information literacy, literacy and new media, ubiquitous learning, viral learning and entrepreneurial learning; and

* ethical issues relating to learning online, including issues relating to data capture, analysis and display, and learning about controversial subjects or anti­social activities.

HICSS 50 and the "Big Island"
The Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, in its 50th year, is one of the longstanding scientific conferences and is highly ranked among information systems conferences. Diverse disciplines unified by a focus on information technologies are woven together in a matrix structure of tracks and themes. By attending HICSS you are not only reaching the audience of your track and mini-track; you also have the opportunity to learn about what is happening in related fields and meet leaders in those fields. Mini-tracks within the Collaboration Systems and Technologies and the Digital and Social Media tracks are particularly relevant.

Friday, 13 May 2016

Future of Education: merging quantified, qualified & connected Self #telepathy #telekinesis #quantifiedself

The people from the European Multiple MOOC Aggregator (EMMA) asked me to contribute my view on the Future of Education. So I recorded a talking head video (added below the slide deck), and accompanied it with a slide deck. In this This video proposes the Future of Education as the realization of human telekinesis and telepathy as a result of merging the quantified, qualified, and connected self. By reaching a telekinetic and telepathic state of mind, more time is left to dedicate to each of our personal learning goals. But in order to reach this connected state we must provide more curated content (like MOOCs), achieve a better understanding of how the mind works, and promote open access and open data. The video also offers two possible assignments.

Future of education for EMMA MOOC from Inge de Waard

And here is the full video:

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Free Informal language & MOOC conference call #CfP #MOOC #Language

Consider joining (by attending and/or presenting) at the International conference on MOOCs, Informal Language Learning, and Mobility. It offers FREE registration for all, plus a potential 200 EUR to cover travel cost if you are coming from outside of the UK.

Deadline for submitting: 27 May 2016.
Notification of acceptance: 10 June 2016.
Conference dates: 20 - 21 October 2016
Location: The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK.
Conference page.

Most of the time academic conferences require considerable fees to attend a conference, so take advantage of this one being internationally oriented, yet free. They even serve free coffee and tea!

Abstracts are invited for a 20-minute presentation or a poster in a titled attachment of not more than 300 words in length, with name, address and affiliation.  Email the abstract to: Hannah Leicester hannah.leicester@open.ac.uk. All submissions will be peer-reviewed and we will notify you by 10th June.  A selection of papers will be published in a peer-reviewed and open access online journal: research-publishing.net. Full paper submission date is 30th October 2016.

The Department of Languages at The Open University (UK), in conjunction with the Erasmus+ MOVE-ME[1] project, will host this joint conference

Call for papers 
In addition to MOVE-ME project presentations, we welcome research-related papers, presentations of case studies and projects as well as posters on MOOCs, Informal Language Learning, and Mobility. Topics included but not limited to:  
·       - MOOCs - design, learning, teaching, quality assurance, etc
·       - CALL and its normalisation
·       - Mobile-assisted language teaching and learning
·       - Informal language learning
·       - Learning to learn languages
      Student mobility
      Virtual classrooms, eLearning, and ePortfolio

Confirmed keynote speakers are:
Professor Agnes.Kukulska-Hulme (The Open University, UK)
Dr Jeremy Knox (Edinburgh University, UK)

Registration: Download the registration form from here. Email the completed form to Hannah Leicester hannah.leicester@open.ac.uk by 31st July 2016

[1] Six project partners are: Università per Stranieri di Siena, (Italy), The Open Unversity (UK), Federazione Nazionale Insegnanti Centro di iniziativa per l'Europa (Italy); National University of Ireland, Galway (Ireland), Computer Technology Institute & Press Diophantus (Greece) and Nstitutul De Stiinte Ale Educatiei (Romamia)