Universities better get on the MOOC bus, because it is leaving the station…
Coursera as LMS. Blackboard as MOOC. Fuck this ed-tech stuff. Seriously.
— Audrey Watters (@audreywatters) July 10, 2013
"marketing was the main reason his institution was trying a MOOC" http://t.co/5C2ceqgeOA Jump on the bus now cause its going off a cliff
— Alan Levine (@cogdog) July 10, 2013
You don’t have to ride the bus off the cliff. There is a safe haven of reprieve from the madness called.. you know it… ds106
The most recent class, a 5 week summer class at UMW, doing ds106 finished a month ago. Yet you can still find:
- People still doing Daily Creates, we are running a July Summer Challenge
- Ben Rimes is running a book reading group, the 106 Book club.
- Open Online Participants continue to go about ds106 at their own pace — see what Sydney based instructional designer Tanya Lau has done on her own, Tech Teacher Bill Smith has jumped in as well, and is even building a piratebox, Stefanie J (from Germany) continues to produce ds106 art…
- Mariana Funes, a student in Martin Weller’s H817 Open University course in Open Education, has written a sweeping summary of her look at ds106, Can digital storytelling provide an effective educational tool?
- ds106 Radio runs 24/7 and with many people doing live broadcasts, newly starting live broadcasts as Fall 2012 UMW student Daniel Zimmerman
What do you call a course that has this much activity when there is not even a course running?
But here is the thing– there is no course at UMW scheduled for Fall 2013 that will be ds106. This happened before, in Fall 2011, and Michael Branson Smith ran a York College CUNY course that kept the pace going.
And if you want to run a “ds106-ish” course and use the site to aggregate yours and your students blogs, then you can still put a request in. IN the last few years, classes from York College, Kansas State University, Kennesaw State University. University of Michigan, Temple University Japan, SUNY Cortland, and Jacksonville State University have done so– see the links from the ds106 History.
And this underlies one of the strengths and mysteries of ds106- there is actually no single ds106 course, it is many, and none, in the same overlapping space. Does your MOOC do that? Even with $43 million of new chump change?
But here is the thing I have kept spinning in the back of the dog brain– for someone who comes across ds106, it is a bit, if not a lot, bewildering. Where do they start? Where is the syllabus? Where is the teacher? What the heck is going on here? I tried to create some starting points in the ds106 Quick Start Guide.
So here is my dog haired idea for Fall 2013- run a leaderless open section of ds106 for anyone that wants to join along. I don’t have time (nor am getting paid once cent to work on ds106) to be a teacher, what if we crowd sourced that, kind of the way Alec Couros did for ETMOOC?
Here’s what I am thinking we could do to create a ds106 course without a teacher…
- We set up weekly assignments based on the last full semester class taught at UMW, these can be set to be published as schedule posts for late August through December 2013. There is a proven and time tested schedule.
- Interested people can do as much or little as they want, they network via twitter, syndicate their ds106 blogs into the ds106 site.
- We set up a signup sheet for people who have done ds106 before to be “guides” for a week, which means just announcing the stuff, doing the work that week, helping people with questions, or adding new things to the mix which might help. All you commit for is to help guide a week for a topic you are interested in or have experience to offer.
- I might suggest that people who have done ds106 before bring along a colleague as a mentee, or maybe a group, and coordinate your own communciations/feedback/discussion/feed support. But mainly, do your part to bring at least one new person into the ds106 fold.
This can be done with little overhead- the syllabus is there, the content, the course structure. All we need is you.
I am NOT going to run this, just offering to ask you to help us push this bus into motion.
What a grand experiment, to see if we can have an online course run without a teacher, Harvard super prof or not. Isnt this a refreshing change from the smell of MOOC poop?
Who wants to play?
The post "While the MOOC Bus Heads Off, A Modest Proposal for ds106" was originally emerged from the primordial ooze and first walked on land at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2013/07/modest-proposal-for-ds106/) on July 10, 2013.