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H808 – Reflection (A2.2)

October 3, 2010

Well, what should I say. The activity started on the 18 September and ended on 1 October and I joined in on the 28 September after finishing my ECA for H800. Though I planned to run H808 parallel to H800, did it turned out to be impossible for me, as the ECA took more time as anticipated and my job as full-time vocational teacher did not left me much time either. Unfortunately I agreed to teach two new subjects and a new class this year, which means a lot of additional preparation, as well a lot more test to grade, etc.

Let me tell you, its breathtaking coming in a course that is on its way for more than 3 weeks and seeing all the unread  forum and blogs post. In H800 I had already the feeling that I am sitting in a fast train, but at least I was already on the train, but here it is/was like running behind the train.

Joining in on the 28 September I was overwhelmed by all the contributions in the forum and the wiki and first had to orientated myself  with the task and the reading. It was like putting the cart before the horse. Reading the call-ups from my peers I felt cheap not letting them know that I am still working on my ECA, even if I mentioned that in my introduction, but me too did not assume that I will not have the time not participating at all in H808, but I had to make the decision to prevent failing H800 and to keep up my professional work as a teacher.

Nevertheless, did I felt quickly welcome when I reported back and got advise and instructions what I could do which helped me to jump into the activity and contribute something to the group work, researching the JISC resource. It also helped to contact my tutor

Well activity was far from straightforward, due to my late entry, but I think it was still a valuable experience because coming late into a project, due to several reason – because you might have started a new job, is quite common practice in practice and newcomers have to orientated themselves as quickly as possible and familiarise with the project, similar as I had to do. So I guess I improved my practice-related competencies. All collaborative group work requires communication, be it face-to-face or online, synchronous or asynchronous, but fortunately I am pretty skilled in that so I experienced no problems using the tools. However, probably because people already moved on to their reflection or gave up on those who did not participate in the group work, did only one peer repley personally to me, welcomed me and offered directions, besides that there were (understandable) simply call-ups to get involved. I followed one of this call-ups to research the JISC case study and added my results in the tutor-group wiki and the forum. Though I was glad to have a concrete task, did I wished for some feedback, but received ‘only’ a comment from my tutor, which was encouraging. I know I should not expect to much, but a least a comment or a ‘hallo’ from others would have been nice.

Although I think that there is always something new to learn, did the activity not greatly enhance my technology and research-related competencies as I am pretty familiar with research and wikis, forums and blogs, thanks to my previous H800 course.

I think though this was a collaborative work, does it still requires to be proactive. Someone had to start the wiki, decide which region to research and ask others to fill the gaps. However, I think the last part of our task run a little bit short. Sure we completed the template, but there was no much discussion going on if everybody is happy with the results, it was simply taken for granted. Probably because everybody was  simply happy to come to an end and wanted to continue with the other activities, probably because nobody wanted to question or criticise someone else, or did not take or have the time to verify the statements. All three reasons count for me, I was happy that I contributed a least a little bit to the activity and I was happy that it was over and I definitely did not have the time to go through all the suggest case studies and resources my peers suggested, though it would have been interesting with a little bit more time and coming in already late I was not in the role to criticise and I had nothing to complain, most of the work was already done by my peers so I could only greatly benefit from there work. And I like to thank my group members again for doing such a great work.

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