What did we learn?

This is already the last blog post for the ONL212. In this one I want to give a small summary and also what I have learned during the course.

We started our journey with getting to know each other in our learning group. Very different people from various backgrounds came together.

Then already the first topic of digital literacies and our online behavior. A surprisingly new angle for me to discover. I have never thought of the online world so deeply.

Second we dove deep into the online learning topic and the meaning of openness. Especially the openness topic was and is still important to me and I was glad to also speak about openness in combination with VR at Aalto (link will follow as soon as recording is ready to share).

After that we discussed thoroughly the advantages, problems and opportunities of group work in person and also online. In our group we had quite different experiences with this topic. We agreed in the end that group work requires facilitation by someone and that the hardest part is to arrange the groups properly.

The fourth topic was again a deep dive into the topic of blended learning and online learning. The overarching theme of this course. We explored blended learning ourselves with the group sessions and talked a lot about the advantages. Blended learning is hopefully the future.

The last topic that we cover today is lessons learnt and future practices:

I was never in this kind of learning group and I was quite impressed how this works. It was most often more fun than the normal learning. I am still a bit overwhelmed about all the information there is.

It will be very interesting to implement what I have learned here. I am also keen on seeing the feedback from students. Most important for me is that they have fun while learning!

If we are speaking in the modes of learning model [1]: I experienced most of my learning as a hierarchical individual in the past. Sometimes that works best, but I think more teachers should explore other modes and change from top down lectures to other modes if it suits the course and topic.

Especially in these modes you can see quite some differences between countries. Most often none elite and smaller universities are exploring other options. Probably the elite unis do not really think they should change as the students will come anyway?

As a former student representative, that was part in a couple of application processes for new professors, I unfortunately have to say that most universities do not really pay that much attention to the teaching skills of the potential new professor as they should. I think we should look more into those skills and if they are willing to explore new teaching techniques.

For the future I will try to broaden my learning and teaching. One has to find the style that suits themselves and in teaching and in learning. But one should have the choice to do so, of course within some guidance / scaffold from the teacher (as they hopefully know how to learn some stuff best).

If you are keen on opinions of other groups in the course on this topic check out [2].


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  1. Hi! I’m curious that you place yourself (based on previous experience) in the individual hierarchical box. Where did you study and what did you study? In my experience as a student (20-25 years ago) most of my experience as a student was more towards “hierarchical collective” and sometimes (depending on subject) the individual hierarchical. Maybe it has to do with culture and subject discipline e.g. in Sweden students are supposed to take their own responsibility, take initiative and be proactive in their studies. Do you think, that if you would be a student in the same institution today…that you would place yourself in the same quadrant?

  2. Thank you for a very nice summary of your journey with ONL212. As an Aalto colleague interested in VR I would love to hear more about your thoughts of openness in combination with VR at Aalto.