Over the last three months I spent a considerable amount of time following the #PLENK2010 Massive Open OnLine Course organized by Dave Cormier, Stephen Downes, Rita Kop, and George Siemens.
This post will be an attempt to summarize the impact of that experience and it will be non-static as I will update it from time to time as new thoughts and reflections come to mind. (I do that with other posts as well, so this blog is not intended as an “honest” reflection of my expressed thoughts as they occur but rather of what they might or should have been)
Surprisingly, one impact of the course on me was a kind of mental constipation which set in mid-way through the course which blocked the free flow of ideas required for my full and effective participation, and the first purpose of this post will be to help me understand that.
Perhaps, if it comes to anything, this might also shed some light on the thinking of other non-contributing participants and be useful with regard to the debate prompted by George Siemens’ unfortunate judgemental reference to “lurkers” in his otherwise very reasonable discussion of the benefits of active engagement.
When it comes to asessing what I have learned, I share some of the confusion expressed by others. Actually a lot of it may be intangible but still real – I do think that I may have picked up some skills by observing how others build and extend relationships; and perhaps, by going back and reviewing how the facilitators managed the progress of the course, I may learn some more specific things about what to do (and not do) when trying to “teach” people to learn independently.