Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Reflective Journal

Personal Learning and Reflection

Weeks 1-3

Over these first 3 weeks, I focused on the course design and layout and getting familiar with using wiki spaces. I also defined the scope for the history section of my modules, I narrowed it down from what it was originally going to be because I was mindful of users getting bogged down in reading. In class, we learned about online course examples. This was good as I got a chance to see what was out there and draw inspiration

Weeks 3-6

During these weeks I focused on sourcing the information for the modules. I gathered all of the resources (recipes, videos, images) that I needed and started adding them to the pages doing one per week as I had other assignments on the go as well.  I had to make a change to the storyboard due to the limited amount of pages I can make with a free account, this was rather annoying as it meant I lost an enitre module from my course, but it couldn't be helped.

Weeks 6-8

During these weeks, in class we learnt about online credentialization , ethics and accessibility. After learning about credentialization, I got to work designing my quizzes for assessment for each module and embedded them on the wiki. During this time, I also started the poster design, drawing inspiration from the project posters scattered around campus

Final Week

During this week I finalized everything (page formatting, layout, videos, assessment) as well as finished my poster. I also tested my site by asking a student to give me feedback and recommend any changes needed. I'm on track to finishing on time...... just and am confident that I will pass!

Accessibility Issues

For my wiki, there are few accessibility issues. I have made the wiki public, so that anyone with the wiki URL can view the page. It is straightforward to navigate with clearly defined buttons for each module of the course. Also, wiki spaces is compatible with other devices such as smartphones and tablets. This means that students can access the course without having to have a computer or laptop.  The page is in English so that may cause some issues for any non English speaking users, although, the page could probably be easily translated. 

Ethical Issues

No personal information will be stored on the wiki, apart from the member names which won't necessarily be a persons real name. However, if someones username is their real name, only I will be able to view it.

Since the information on my course is largely based off the work of other people, there are copyright issues to be taken into account. All videos and recipes have the proper acknowledgement of the original authors and have been referenced using E.I.T's APA referencing style. The quizzes, although designed on a website external from the wiki, the questions will be my own original work so there are no issues surrounding those.

Only people that are members can post on the page once access has been granted by the administrator (me) so this will help control misuse of the site

Technology and Technical Learning 


Technology problems

As mentioned in a previous section, I ran into a problem when trying to create my course. I had to drop one module from it as there is a limit of 5 pages you can create using a free wiki spaces account. 

There was no way to solve this without subscribing and I didn't want to pay meaning that my wiki didn't turn out exactly how I had planned it.

Apart from that minor hiccup, there were no other technological problems to report. wiki spaces is great because it supports so many different technologies that other wiki sites such as Wiki Educator don't. For example,YouTube.

Future Proofing

The theoretical information that I have on my courses shouldn't change as most of it is just recipes and history on the dishes for the modules. My wiki is reliant on the fact that wiki spaces remains online in the future so I have backups of all of the information on the pages. This ensures that if wiki spaces does go offline, I can just re create the course on another platform. Another future proofing issue is the fact that my tutorial videos may get removed from YouTube. If that does happen, "home made" tutorials will be created and uploaded in their place.

Teaching and Learning Effectiveness

A difficulty with enforcing pedagogies online is the fact that people learn in different ways and get bored quickly. I tried to combat this so that there was a good mixture of practical and theoretical learning. Along with visual and interactive aids, this meant that my wiki appealed to the visual, audio and kinesthetic  learners. The encorporation of social media in my course helps to appeal to the connectivist. Since this course is online and is mainly self assessed, I felt that it would have the most trouble connecting with the Social Constructivist group.

Project Plan

Because my project plan is not in this post, you will have to take my word that I stuck to the project plan as much as possible. I originally was going to try and work on 2 pages a week, but time got the better of me and it only ended up being one page per week

Possible Improvements and Future Extentions

As the course has only been tested by one student. There are not many recommendations I can make about changes until more students try the course and more feedback is gathered

One of the first things I would've added, given more time is a feedback form that student fill out at the end of the course. This would be an important tool to help and gather feedback

I would design some sort of certificate that the students get emailed when there assessments have been looked at (quiz results, photos) so that students have an incentive to pass

Perhaps a good future step would be to move this course away from a wiki and on to a website domain. this would mean that I would have the capacity to add more modules to the course and not have to worry that it might go offline.

As for the content of the course, I would like to develop more interactive activities such as games (make your own pizza) this will help students apply what they are learning. 

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Week 8

Since starting this course, I have learnt how to use blogger, how to design and use a wiki, about e portfolios, personal learning networks, and about Instructional design.

These have all been interesting topics in their own way. I liked learning about all of these topics because it developed both my practical and theory knowledge and introduced me to different digital learning tools that I wouldn't normally use. 

The use of guest speakers to present week 6 and 7's topics was very interesting. From Joyce's presentation, a lot of new DLT tools were introduced to me which was great as this will allow me to further develop my personal learning network. 

I enjoyed doing the weekly blog posts as it taught me a lot about using the blogger program and the different tools available to use on it. It also allowed me to reflect on the week and reinforced what we learnt in class for that week.

Another positive that I have found in this course as that there are guides to help you do the weekly activities. These are easy to follow and are very useful as you don't have to wait for a reply to an email if you ask a question.

In my opinion, there isn't much that I would change in the course. Personally I find that it has a good mix of practical and theory which is good because it allows you to actually put what you are learning in theory, in to practice.

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Week 7

This week, we had a guest lecturer Stephanie Day from the E.I.T learning services come and speak to us about Pedagogies and her role as learning technologist.

Learning about what a learning technologist does was very interesting as it provided me with lots of useful information about the role which benefited me greatly as this is a career path I am thinking of taking 

Three different methodologies were covered: ADDIE, OTARA and Rapid Prototyping.

The ADDIE methodology is a waterfall model that involves Analysis, Design, Development, Implementation and Evaluation (VirtualMV, 2014)

The OTARA Methodology stands for Objectives, Theme (or context), Activities, Resources and Assessment (VirtualMV, 2014)

Personally, I think that the OTARA model is the most effective design tool to use when developing a course. This is because it puts a focus on content and allows for an information rich, well designed course. Its also effective because, as you design the OTARA, you can plan the layout of your course, using the OTARA as a guide to make sure that all relevant information, activities, etc is included.

The technologies used this week for delivery on Monday worked quite well. One technology used that I thought stood out for effectiveness was the brainstorming app that Stephanie used. This is because it allowed the students tuning in from home through Adobe connect to be actively participating in the lesson. Apart from the issues with sound that were experienced listening from home, I think the rest of the technology used was very effective.


VirtualMV, 2014. Instructional design models.Retrieved from

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Activity 6.1

In Monday's Class, we had a guest speaker Joyce Seitzinger from Australia talk to the class about Personal Learning Networks. she talked to us about what a PLN is and what tools we can use to develop our PLN to maximize the usefulness of PLN's

The first point that Joyce talked about that I found particularly interesting was how social media is a very useful platform to develop your PLN. The part that I found the most interesting was about the use of twitter. I learnt that twitter is a very effective tool to develop your PLN. I already knew that you can use twitter to follow industry professionals, but the thing I learnt was that you can use the hash tags to access rich information from others with the same interest as you. Before Joyce's presentation, I didn't really see twitter as a useful tool, but after hearing about it and all the benefits of it, i will definitely be using it in the future.

The second bit that I learnt the most from was when she talked about all of the different tools that are available for your PLN and how they can be grouped into different categories. Some of the new tools that were introduced to me by Joyce were, Flipboard and About Me. About me will be particularly useful for me as it aggregates all the tools in one place and makes it easier for people to find you as everything is all on one page.

A challenge that I can see myself facing in the future is: How to stay active on all of the different tools (What to post? when to post it? do I have enough time to manage all of these different tools?)


Here is a picture of my PLN diagram

At the moment, My PLN is quite small and I'm looking to expand it with some of the new tools I have learnt about from Joyce's Presentation and by trying some of the other tools I have seen from other student's Diagrams. At the moment I get a learning edge from my PLN because I have a good mix of communication and learning tools which means I can gather information and communicate it effectively using my PLN

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Activity 5.1

An e portfolio is a collection of an individuals experiences, achievements and learning which is normally presented in a CV format and aided by websites such as Linked-in

Sites such as Linked-in and other similar websites are great for connecting with others in the same field as you. They are great for establishing and expanding networks and could aid in future job prospects.

Another purpose that e portfolios have that is useful is when employees "google you" they will be able to have access to a great academic reference rather than just relying on impressions that they get from other online profiles such as Facebook, whos content may not necessarily benefit the employee they are searching. 

Click here for my Linked In Profile
Click here for my Google site with Basic CV

Week 4 Other Activites

Other Activities. Have added a calendar to the side bar. Have also added a widget for twitter (couldn't get the twitter feed to show but if you click on the follow me button you can see my twitter feed) RSS feed of blog can be found on

Monday, 10 March 2014

Activity 4.1

The section that I changed on the wiki was the Skype section in the wiki

I added a brief description of what Skype is and some of the features. I also provided my opinion on how suitable I think Skype would be to use to steam classes.