We are continuing on with the same topics this week, Access & Equity, Sustainability and Cultural Sensitivity.

Estimated date of completion: 18 October 2009

Access and equity

  • Research Universal Design and in a new post to your blog consider how these design principles could be applied in your course or new flexible learning development to support access and equity.
Cultural sensitivity
  • Post to your blog a brief outline of how you identify yourself culturally, and your understanding of the Treaty of Waitangi (NZ) (or indigenous or ethnic groups in your own country) obligations in your organisation, and how they might be integrated into your teaching.
  • Check out the Maori Strategic Framework on Polybase at Otago Polytechnic - this is not available to non-Otago Polytechnic staff - apologies.
  • Join a meeting to talk about how we might improve the cultural sensitivity of teaching and learning.
Upcoming Meeting dates:
  • Face to face - Wednesday 1200-1300 in H614 (there is no meeting 14 October).
  • Online - 14 October – 7.30 - 8.30 pm via the Elluminate meeting link (may be subject to change if there is a time that everyone feels is more suitable).
Summary of Blogs

This week’s activity on the blogs mainly focused on the previous topics but there are some adventurous souls out there exploring flexible learning.
Hellie wrote a fantastic blog entry in her blog that utilised a mind map to outline the key points of Phil's talk. The process really identified the important features and considerations of flexible delivery in an educational organisation and presented the information in such a way that it was clear and easy to read and understand. In this way Hellie related the educational organisation’s objectives with Gertie the student’s situation and in doing so it showed how communicating the idea of flexible learning is not just an institutional problem but also a challenge for students.
Ella addressed an earlier topic to her blog exploring what image represents her as a teacher. She posted a beautiful image that I could relate to my own teaching. Facilitation of learning is somewhat like a parenting role, guiding and nurturing while also letting go. Ellie also addressed the chaos that can excite students who are new to a world of possibilities in flexible learning. There is a fine balance between giving students freedom and keeping them motivated to achieve the objectives.
This week Steven posted to his blog the interview that he had with a colleague, Raewyn, about how flexible delivery is implemented in her course. It was interesting to read how Steven utilised the ‘flexibility grid’ by Casey and Wilson (2005) to allowed him to evaluate and compare each aspect of his course compared to hers. Raewyn has put a lot of thought into ensuring that her distance students get valuable and achievable workplace experience while also fitting the course into an academic framework. This foucs on practical experience is really helping Raewyn to facilitate flexible learning in her course.
Have a go at reading these blogs and posting some feedback to your colleages, there are some real gems out there!


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