• Alternative credential stacking

    This is Part 2 that follows Alternative credentials – micro-credentials, stackable credentials, and digital badges The key to understanding alternative credentials isn’t so much the technology or the badging, it’s actually the pathways to or from HEI or to or from industry/professions. In other words, do they lead to something and is this something recognized? This is where stacking comes in. Stackable credentials are composed of a sequence of credentials that stack or accumulate towards an additional credential.  According to Ganzglass (2014) they serve “to build up an individual’s qualifications and help them to move along a career pathway or up a career ladder to different and potentially higher-paying jobs.”…

  • Alternative credentials – micro-credentials, stackable credentials, and digital badges

    I’ve had varying levels of interest in micro-credentials and its cousin – digital badges- over the years, ranging from “not interested” to “there’s great potential”. Part of the reason is that any innovation that resembles a twist on something that higher ed has been doing for decades, especially if technology is the twist, evokes an eye roll in me. This summer’s personal and consulting project had me diving in a bit more into the world of micro-credentials, stackable credentials, and digital credentials. And no, these aren’t all the same thing, but they occupy the same house called alternative credentials. Here’s what I learned: There are no common definitions Alternative credentials…

  • Reduced transactional distance and online community

    At the start of COVID, I hastily wrote a post about teaching online using email and a phone. I wrote that post because I was concerned that faculty and institutional support staff would be overloaded with trying to move courses into a learning management system, which isn’t always an easy undertaking. In some institutions where there isn’t much capacity to support faculty it seemed like it would be an overwhelming task for faculty to have to learn how to use a learning management system if they’d never been in one before. My approach in this circumstance has always been to identify the the lowest common denominator tool from an access…

  • Deconstructing productivity with Teams and Planner

    I’ve been working on some productivity tweaks, and with a BCcampus move to Office 365 and Teams, I’ve found myself really appreciating the seamless transition between Slack-like team spaces and synchronous meetings. I’m also loving MS Forms for survey creation, and this week I discovered Planner, the Office 365 project management Kanban tool. I dove right in and have realized that MS Office 365 is major rethink, and a significant workflow shift. But it has required some reflection about how all the productivity and workflow pieces fit together. The first thing to understand is that Teams, Planner, and to some extent Outlook are built on top of a files and…

  • Examples of open education practices enabled by OpenETC infrastructure

    For some time I’ve been wanting to share some examples of what open education practices (OEP) enabled by open ed tech looks like in practice.  OpenETC provides open ed tech infrastructure to the BC higher ed sector in the form of 3 types of services:  WordPress, Mattermost, and Sandstorm click and go apps.  The most visible examples of OEP are in the WordPress part of OpenETC, since Mattermost (open source Slack) is a more private class or group space, and Sandstorm uses-in-practice aren’t visible to us as administrators. So this is a round-up of a selection of uses of WordPress in OpenETC. WordPress E-portfolios Last year, the biggest uptake for OpenETC…

  • Student Conditions and Access in the Online Pivot

    It’s been just over a week since I posted a short piece on how to teach online with email and a smartphone and what a week it’s been. There’s continued to be great support and resources being shared and some of us are settling into a new reality. I’m encouraged by the emphasis on care and flexibility, and in reflecting on all that has gone on this week I think the first task in moving online is not deciding what technology to move to but what kind of access and conditions your students have in their new reality and take it from there. It’s a bit late for some educators…

  • Online Teaching with the most basic of tools – email

    How to teach online using only email and a phone and maybe one other tool There’s been a lot of a great resources being shared by so many of us who want to help with the move-online-quickly situation that COVID has found us in. I don’t link to any of it here but I want to acknowledge this great work and generous sharing of it. This is my small contribution. The great thing about moving online because of COVID is that it’s the middle of the semester so students already know your flow. You just need to translate that flow to online. There are lots of ways to do this,…

  • Week in Review Feb 14

    I don’t really know how to write about this week. BCNet, after 2 or 3 years of having 1/3 keynote slots for a female speaker, went back to an all male keynote panel. Over the years I’ve provided no less than 9 names of potential speakers, spoken directly to an organizer who told me how “hard” it was, left comments on feedback forms and online surveys. For what? So much of rattling the cages and pointing out this nonsense is tiring. But it’s just a keynote right? Unfortunately, this complicit blindness extends upwards to our entire sector who still feel that in 2020 it’s ok to have senior leadership teams…

  • Week in Review Feb 7

    This week it felt like all my planning pieces came together – thankfully, because I felt like I spend a lot of time overthinking certain things in an effort to be collaborative and cautious, but I’ll be honest that I’m ready to get going on the doing. Fortunately, there are lots of doing things that get me excited. I’m about 3 months in to these weekly reflections and had to do a check in with myself about them, namely, is this right format? Am I just sharing my laundry list? Does it make me feel bad when I don’t have much to report on? Should I maybe just focus on…

  • Week in Review – Jan 24 and 31

    As it was bound to happen, I missed getting to last week’s review, but sometimes the things we do don’t fall into tidy week long chunks. One of the things I’ve learned about myself is that I’m a perculator…if I’m working on something complex or something that involves synthesis, I have to think and read a lot before anything progresses to a writing stage. As someone who loves to cross things off a list, this is more than a bit frustrating, but I’ve come to understand it as part of my process. The plus is that usually I don’t have to spend a ton of time on drafts…one or two…

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