Professional Development

This section holds a number of resources of my Professional Development submission.  As part of the submission I had to read a number of articles and choose the one which “spoke” to me the most.

The articles which I read and did not choose were 1, 2, & 3.  Article 1 – “An Avalanche is Coming” seemed to me to be too “commercial” and as I read further I realised that it was sponsored by a commercial training provider.  It also made a number of statements which were not backed by references or research which immediately reduced the credibility of the document for me.

The article which “spoke” most to me was the Digital Natives article as I felt it gave me greater understanding of what learners want as opposed to what teachers think learners want and use.  It helped to dispel a number of assumptions that I made about Digital “natives” and how in-place students actually place more importance on Internet access than distance learners.  My e-learning philosophy, which you can read here, is centred around the learner and anything that gives me greater insight into my learner is valuable to me.

I also presented a slideshow on “My learning so far”, a PDF copy of which you can find in My Learning Since Graduation v2

After the presentation I spoke on an item which meant something to me.  In this case it was a video that is quite famous in teaching circles from Sir Ken Robinson on creativity.  Most especially the story from 03:44 to 04:12 which highlights to me a number of things:

  • We can learn from our students
  • We are not always right
  • Just because no-one has done it before it doesn’t mean it can’t be done

Here is the video in its entirety:

Finally, I presented a piece of software which I use in my teaching which continues to impress me and shows me some of the ways that technology can enhance learning.  It is a network simulation tool called Packet Tracer, and it allows students to build networks of devices inside the application which can then be configured and connected in a similar manner to real-world devices.  It allows me to teach students about large networks without having to use physical equipment all the time.  I do use physical equipment but I would never have access to enough equipment (or set-up time) to replicate what I can do with this package.  A couple of sample screenshots are below:

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All my material from my MSc in Applied E-Learning

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