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Archive for the 'My Work' Category

Where is Higher Education’s Digital Dividend?

• April 9, 2014

One doesn’t need to devour political or economic analysis, listen to experts or even chat with one’s friends to realize that the Internet has changed the way we produce and consume information and the myriad ways in which we communicate. Blogs, wikis and Facebook walls have granted to each of us –a multimedia printing press […]


Reflection on world’s first Online 3 Minute Thesis Contest

• January 29, 2014

Being a huge fan of succinct communications and plain language, I was drawn to the ideas behind the 3 Minute Thesis contests, developed originally (and trademarked??) at the University of Queensland in Australia and now supported international from http://threeminutethesis.org/.  Since their development in 2008 the idea has spread globally with 3 minute thesis contests happening […]


All MOOCs don’t work for all students. Are you surprised?

• November 19, 2013

Both the commercial and the unpaid online blog pundits have been having an armchair quarterback’s field day over MOOC poster boy Sebastin Thrun’s confession that his Udacity MOOC platform doesn’t work.  None of this outcry from the “I told you so” critics is more biting (nor more witty) then the critique by Slate columnist Rebecca Shuman. Shuman aptly […]


Accreditation – for Learning Accomplishment or for Presence and Persistence?

• November 12, 2013

Offering degrees and certificates is the currency of higher education. Degree and certificates are very highly valued by students, parents, employers and postsecondary institutions. Despite occasional challenges to the authenticity of this form of learning recognition, attaining this final parchment is seen by both institutions and students as the culminating and arguably the only important […]


My participation in Online Instruction for Open Educators MOOC

• October 27, 2013

Jenni Hayman (a friend and grad student here at Athabasca University) called a few months ago to talk about setting up a Canadian MOOC provider/supplier Wide World Ed. She is very enthusiastic, well meaning and anxious to test and develop a sustaining MOOC model (no easy task). She choose for her first MOOC the theme […]


Online 3 Minute Thesis Contest at Athabasca

• September 30, 2013

I’m intrigued by this “speed dating” approach for disseminating and promoting thesis research. A thesis is a LOT of work, and results are usually buried in 150+ page tomes – thus the need for new scholars to be able to present their work succinctly and efficiently.  The 3 minute thesis (originally developed at University of […]


How much time does it take to teach online?

• July 23, 2013

I’ve long been fascinated by studies on time factors in online learning. The issues of teacher time are especially relevant given the high cost of teachers, the threat to the profession, MOOCs offering much less teacher-intensive education opportunities and my own online equivalency theory. This study Mandernach, B., Hudson, S., & Wise, S. (2013). Where […]


Two Days, three Museums, two Cathedrals and 576 Kms on the Costa Del Azaharhone

• May 28, 2013

This is my first blog post from my 2 month position as a visiting professor at the open University of Catalonia (UOC). UOC is a 100% distance University (like Athabasca U.) but founded not as a correspondence university, but as an online university in 1997.  There is a large open university (UNAD) in Madrid but […]


A Publishing Primer for Education Grad students

• May 24, 2013

Ask any academic, and they will get into a long discourse about the value of publishing scholarly work, the politics of doing it, the challenges and the outlets.  Although you haven’t asked, I’d like to share my own ideas with particular relevance to publishing work related to distance education. By way of background, I’ve been […]


MOOCs as community??

• April 8, 2013

Here at Athabasca University we’ve finally begun serious talk about our approach to MOOCs. We are working through two models, trying to decipher the pros and cons of each or both. These are: Run one of more of our own MOOCs, based in whole or part on our current online courses. In order to be a […]