Where has NGL come from?

How could this course be improved?
A clearly articulated big picture of this course in terms of expectations and requirements provided at the very beginning would have been greatly beneficial. A roadmap would be a good description of what I mean here.

Greater scaffolding to allow people to get familiar with the setup process and tools being used – simpler and fewer tasks in the first couple of weeks. I think this would have helped and allowed time for participants to allocate greater time to connecting with each other. I feel overwhelmed by the number of tasks and readings and tool setup – that I haven’t really been able to concentrate on making meaningful connections. Goodyear talks about access barriers on page 34 in relation to better user interfaces – for me the barrier isn’t about the interfaces but about getting used to “how things work” in this course.   I think what I am saying also ties in a little with Anne’s post for this activity – but I think that the lack of connection might be because there is too much to be done and not enough time to get to know our environment.

Assessment tasks are in development and still unclear. I would love one source of truth for the assessment tasks and a final version that gives some certainty – all in one place.

How could your approach to this course as student be changed?

At this stage, I don’t really have an answer for this one and I am not sure that I will…..

What contradictions appear in the history of NGL?

Something that stood out for me is the Homophily phenomenon. I can actually see how this happens – we are actually doing something similar for the “me as learner” activity – we are looking for people with similar interests. I can also see how this could potentially also contradict the “openness” of NGL through reduced access and creating barriers for some people.

How has NGL changed over the years?

The appearance of mobile devices on the scene – NGL can happen whilst you are “on the move”.

The emergence of Web 2.0 has created a shift from consumption of information and knowledge to production, sharing, curation and repurposing/reusing.

What insights/research appear directly related to you as teacher?

I think the homophily phenomenon mentioned above certainly resonates with me as teacher. I think many academics tend to stick to people in their own disciplinary areas when networking. I am wondering whether opportunities are limited or lost by taking such an approach to NGL?

What connections do you see with what’s in this reading and what you’ve seen before?

The connection that comes to mind is that networking isn’t new,  but NGL is allowing new ways to network. It also confirms that to get the most out of them you need to develop “literacies” to navigate them effectively.


10 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. musettegriffiths
    Aug 11, 2014 @ 16:02:46

    Hi Gosku
    I have to agree with you that a road map of sorts may have helped provide some direction for us as participants in this course. I have also felt overwhelemed and would have liked a little more scaffolding in terms of the opportunity to become more familiar with the tools. It has been somewhat difficult at times to isolate which readings are course material and which are readings that participants have shared, particularly in mendeley but perhaps this is due to my inexperience with the tool.
    Like you, some clear direction with one source of truth regarding the assignments would be helpful. I am reluctant to do too much as I don’t know what I need to do. I guess this is a difficulty of networked learning and the discourse that occurs between networked learning and formal education.
    I think it has been difficult for us to connect with each other, while it appears that we are all contributing we are not engaged and connected with each other.


  2. debliriges
    Aug 12, 2014 @ 21:37:10

    Hi GG and Musette
    Have to agree with you both about the need for scaffolding when first encountering NGL, not only in relation to the tools but also the mode of learning. Roadmap, mindmap, anything visual would have assisted me greatly to understand where I may be heading and also agree that more time to become familiar with the tools in the early stages would have been beneficial. I also feel increasingly confused about the requirements for the assessment tasks – should we plead for simplicity?

    I thought I knew a little about connectivist learning…..but this was no preparation for what I encountered! I can appreciate the lessons learned from our first hand experiences and expect to use this to inform my teaching support role at USQ.
    I acknowledge that David has undertaken redesigning the course at short notice, and this is no easy task for him!
    So many factors, so much to consider and take on board, so many possibilities for interesting connections and interactions, will we have time to experience it all?


    • ggdines
      Aug 13, 2014 @ 19:01:06

      Hi Deb and Musette

      thanks for your comments. I am not sure what the answer is but I agree that simplifying things would really help. I feel we need to do less and this would give us the time to do it better. all we can do is our best!



  3. David Jones
    Aug 13, 2014 @ 22:32:58

    G’day All, Great to see the comments. Will be mulling over these and other comments over the next couple of days. Some tweaks are already underway (e.g. the “rest” week for week 5).

    In terms of the assessment, for what it’s worth, the assessment page on the course site is the description of what you need to do. Feel free to ask for clarification. The Google doc has the draft and near final criteria. A Google doc was used as it offers better affordances for some collaborative writing/questioning.

    What else is confusing/missing about the assessment?


  4. Trackback: Catching up on the NGL participation – part B | The Weblog of (a) David Jones
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