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Example Syllabus

 

 

INTRODUCTION TO ONLINE TECHNOLOGIES

SYLLABUS

Prepared by:
Socrates(c) Distance Learning Technologies Group
Copyright, 1997 (Rev 2/98)

Introduction
The following materials provide details of the assignments for this course. As students, you are asked to read all materials and react to those materials specifically assigned. You will be receiving additional information as appropriate through the system and will be dialoging with your instructor and peer students through the six- (6) workshops. Please send all materials to the main virtual classroom (VC) unless specified otherwise in the assignments.

There is a requirement for one team project in this simulation - please pick a partner to work with on this project which will be due in the last workshop. Additional details are provided later. You are also expected to participate in the Seminars  5 to 7 days a week.

Student Competency Expectations:
The combination of group, individual, and computer mediated activities included in this course will result in your acquiring knowledge and skills that you can apply in the workplace to:

  1. Develop a functional understanding of the nature and importance of online learning in the context of contemporary educational offerings.
  2. Define how distance learning and online are related.
  3. Identify and apply key factors that contribute to the success of an online program including an understanding of the Online Model.
  4. Develop an understanding of the characteristics that identify a good online instructor as contrasted to an on-ground instructor.
  5. Identify the characteristics of the students that will be participating in successful online programs. Relate the implications of the various student selection criteria to the online model.
  6. Identify the characteristics of curriculum used in the online paradigm and be able to differentiate online curriculum from on-ground curriculum.
  7. Identify the characteristics of the various technology options available in the online environment and define the selection criteria.
  8. Define the most common carrier technologies used in the delivery of online education. Define the selection criteria, and the implications of various alternatives on the online model.
  9. Be able to synthesize the content of this course into a project that reflects understanding of the concepts presented in the course. This will be accomplished in a team environment.

The overall learning objectives will be supplemented by assignments in the support materials provided with this course.

TEXT:

Bedore, G. L., Bedore, M. ,and Bedore, G. L. (1997). Book Draft: Online Education: The Future is Here Now.

 

READINGS:

Seminar 1: Read chapters 1 and 2 in the text. These chapters have been posted to the web site for you (some of you may not have received your text at this point).

Seminar 2: Read chapters 3 and 4 in the text.

Seminar 3: Read chapters 5 and 6 in the text.

Seminar 4: Read chapters 7 and 8 in the text.

Seminar 5: Read chapters 9, 10, and 11 in the text.

Seminar 6: Read chapter 12 in the text.

The Learning Environment:
To meet the planned student competencies, the course will use virtual classroom meetings and a virtual classroom conference conducted in a networked computer environment. The virtual classroom meetings and conferences provide a method of performing many of the activities traditionally accomplished in the physical classroom, but eliminating the need for travel and reducing the dependence on specific scheduled events.

The learning environment options can be combined in a number of ways to meet the needs of a particular group. The Seminars are designed to be presented interchangeably across the options.

What Day Is It?
Seminar days are as follows. Assignments are due on the day of the seminar specified (by the END OF THE DAY...Midnight) and must have the appropriate day recorded in the sign-on logo (or an earlier date) for full credit.

DAY ONE (1) is MONDAY

DAY TWO (2) is TUESDAY

DAY THREE (3) is WEDNESDAY

DAY FOUR (4) is THURSDAY

DAY FIVE (5) is FREDAY

DAY SIX (6) is SATURDAY

DAY SEVEN (7) is SUNDAY

The Virtual Classroom
Virtual Classroom (VC) seminars will be accomplished through the use of Convene. In this environment we will essentially replicate the activities normally conducted in a traditional classroom setting, except activities of a general nature will be submitted to an "electronic forum" (called a Virtual Classroom) for review and discussion. Students can "attend" the Virtual Classroom discussions at times convenient to them rather than having to be at a specific place at a specific time. The Virtual Classroom(s) are reached by dialing into the system (or entering through Internet), picking up comments and responses submitted since your last connection (usually by "downloading them to your system for off-line review and comment), and then submitting your latest materials (uploading). Generally, work is done "off-line" and then "uploaded" to the Virtual Classroom. The Convene software automatically accomplishes the necessary file transfers.

Optionally, work that is not to be shared with the team (such as examinations) can be directly submitted to your instructor's mailbox. All work will be graded by the instructor and returned to the teams or individuals electronically.

Grading Criteria:
The basis for the evaluation of this course will be as follows:

Overall Participation 15%

Team Project 20%

Virtual Classroom 15%

Individual Papers 25%

Midterm Examination 10%

Final Examination 15%

100%

Good grades are usually correlated with regular attendance and with assignments (written, reading, design projects, and all other kinds) completed and on time. On the other hand, poor grades are often correlated with frequent absences and incomplete and/or missing assignments.

Computer Transmission Format:
Please observe the "ASCII" rule when transmitting your materials - if you use your own word processor, please convert your text to ASCII. Documents sent in the ASCII format are portable to all recognized word processors and also lend themselves to transmission through Internet or Convene. Single spacing in text documents is permitted as a means of saving transmission times. You may also prepare your documents directly in the Convene editor and send it in the formatted mode if you desire.

There will be instances where files formatted in a particular applications package may be requested (usually Lotus, or a Graphics mode). This is permitted if the instructor specifies the desired format and you can meet this format requirement. Such files can be sent attached to your ASCII files through The Convene Network. If you have problems with this method, contact your friendly SYSOP, or send a note to your instructor's mailbox.

Team Term Project:
A team term project is required for the course. The project will be completed by teams of 2-3 students working together to produce a written analysis (to be sent over Convene to the Virtual Classroom). The project will be submitted electronically to the Virtual Classroom for review and comment by Day 2 of Seminar 6. The final submission of the paper to the instructor for grading can wait until DAY 7 of the Seminar to give your teams time to review the comments from others and incorporate any improvements in the final paper.

PLEASE PLAN NOW FOR THE ON-TIME SUBMISSION OF THE PAPER - IT ISN'T SOMETHING THAT CAN BE COMPLETED THE LAST WEEK.

THANK YOU

The team project will be as follows:

The paper is to be 3-6 pages in length and will summarize the concepts covered in the six seminars. The paper will have the following sections:

  • Section I - Introduction
  • Section II - Define Key Elements of an Online Program
  • Section III - Strengths and Weaknesses of an Online Program
  • Section IV - Summary

Project Criteria - Written:
Your project will be graded considering content, clarity, validity, and conformance to APA style parameters regarding citations, references, general format, and comprehensiveness of coverage rather than length. Each person in the Team will receive the same grade for the project. You are to use and cite at least two literature sources other than the textbook. One interview is encouraged.

You are asked to send an ASCII copy of the project to your instructor's mailbox for grading. A hard copy submission is not necessary.

Examinations:
At the instructor's discretion, a midterm exam and a final exam will be provided. The Midterm will be sent to you at the beginning of Seminar 4 and must be individually completed by the end of Seminar 4 and the answers sent to the instructor’s mailbox. The Final examination will be sent to you at the beginning of Seminar 6 and must be individually completed by the end of Seminar 6 and the answers sent to the instructor’s mailbox. Remember - examinations are to be an individual effort (as opposed to a team effort).

 

Specific Seminar Assignments:

SEMINAR 1

OVERVIEW

In Seminar one, we will begin to look at the general topic of distance learning and then move to the online methodologies. We will develop a framework for the study of Distance Learning programs and more specifically, online programs. We will begin by providing an overview of an online program and recognizing the various roles associated with such a program. We will build on this base to understand the specific concerns for the selection for online students. Specific learning objectives for this Seminar are as follows:

  • Develop a functional understanding of the nature and importance of online learning in the context of contemporary educational offerings.
  • Define how distance learning and online are related.
  • Relate the implications of the various student selection criteria to the online model.
  • Identify and apply key factors that contribute to the success of an online program including a understanding of the Online Model.
  • Develop a understanding of the characteristics associated with the successful online student.

Assignments:

  1. Required Reading. Read from the Text: Chapter 1 and 2
  2. Go to the internet and find one article that relates to students in the online educational process. Send a one screen critique of the article and send your response to the VC by DAY 3 of the Seminar.
  3. Send a brief bio (1-2 screens) that will familiarize the class with your work background, leadership experience, and what you would like to gain from this class. Send your Bio to the VC by DAY 2 of the seminar.
  4. Your instructor will assign each member of the class, as part of the Weekly Seminar inputs, one or more discussion questions from assigned reading materials. Each of you is to develop a 1-2 screen response to the assigned question(s) and submit them to the Virtual Classroom on or before day three of the seminar week. Your response should both answer the fundamental question asked and provide an example of a related instance from your workplace or experiential base. In addition to your submission, you are expected to review the responses of your fellow students and comment as appropriate on their contributions. Your comments relative to experiences in your workplace are particularly useful in helping all of us to develop a complete understanding of the concept as it relates to the real world.
  5. Working in the VC, find a partner or two to work with you on the course project to be submitted in Seminar 6. Please negotiate the partnerships online and report the results to the classroom by day 7 of the seminar week.
  6. By Day 7 of the Seminar week, please individually prepare and submit a 1-2 screen summary of what you felt were the key items covered in this seminar and how they might apply in the workplace.

SEMINAR 2

OVERVIEW

In Seminar two, we will look at the role of the facilitator in the online learning process We will look at facilitator selection and training issues, and how the role of the facilitator changes from on model to another.

Specific learning objective for this Seminar are as follows:

  • Identify the characteristics of the successful online facilitator and how the facilitator functions in the VC.
  • Provide an overview of the current facilitator training models being used by successful Institutions and organizations.

 

Assignments:

  1. Required Reading: Read from Text: Chapter 3 and 4.
  2. Locate an article on the WEB relating to the role or characteristics of the facilitator in the VC. Submit a one page critique of the article and the web address to the VC by DAY 3 of the Seminar.
  3. Your instructor will assign each member of the class, as part of the Weekly Seminar inputs, one or more discussion questions from assigned reading materials. Each of you is to develop a 1-2 screen response to the assigned question(s) and submit them to the Virtual Classroom on or before day three of the seminar week. Your response should both answer the fundamental question asked and provide an example of a related Instance from your workplace. In addition to your submission, you are expected to review the responses of your fellow students and comment as appropriate on their contributions. Your comments relative to experiences in your workplace are particularly useful in helping all of us to develop a complete understanding of the concept as it relates to the real world.
  4. Prepare a two-three screen outline of how you would convert a piece of curriculum from an existing on-ground class to the online format. Submit your work to the VC by DAY 3 of the seminar. Comment on the work of others and take suggestions from others and refine your work until it represents the best case. Continue this process throughout the Seminar.
  5. By Day 7 of the Seminar week, please individually prepare and submit a 1-2 screen summary of what you felt were the key items covered in this seminar and how they might apply in the workplace.

SEMINAR 3

OVERVIEW

In Seminar three, we will explore the implications of curriculum and technology on the success of online programs. The learning continuum, the implications of positioning on the continuum, and the relationships between the curricula, facilitation, and technology will be considered. We will focus on asynchronous technologies and implications on the online model. We will also look at synchronous models, hybrids, and special learning situations and how models might be developed for various student levels.

Specific learning objective for this Seminar are as follows:

  • Be able to discuss how curriculum used in the online paradigm and be able to differentiate online curriculum from on-ground curriculum.
  • Demonstrate a basic understanding of how learning models function at various points on the learning continuum.
  • Identify the characteristics of the various technology options available in the online environment and define the selection criteria.

 

Assignments:

  1. Required Reading. Read the Text: Chapter 5 and 6
  2. Read the supplemental article supplied to you by your instructor in the VC. Locate and critique an article relating to this weeks course material Send your response to the VC by DAY 3 of the Seminar.
  3. Your instructor will assign each member of the class, as part of the Weekly Seminar inputs, one or more discussion questions from assigned reading materials. Each of you is to develop a 1-2 screen response to the assigned question(s) and submit them to the Virtual Classroom on or before day three of the seminar week. Your response should both answer the fundamental question asked and provide an example of a related instance from your workplace. In addition to your submission, you are expected to review the responses of your fellow students and comment as appropriate on their contributions. Your comments relative to experiences in your workplace are particularly useful in helping all of us to develop a complete understanding of the concept as it relates to the real world.
  4. By Day 7 of the Seminar week, please individually prepare and submit a 1-2 screen summary of what you felt were the key items covered in this seminar and how they might apply in the workplace.

SEMINAR 4

In Seminar 4, we will identify the purpose and function of various learning models, we will consider how many students make a class, and we will discuss the role of dialogue in the online learning processes.

 

Specific learning objective for this Seminar are as follows

  • Develop an understanding of the role dialogue plays in the online learning process
  • Be able to define the characteristics of the learning models discussed

 

Assignments:

  1. Required Reading from the text: Chapter 7 and 8
  2. Locate and critique an article relating to this week's subject matter and submit your   response to the your response to the VC by DAY 3 of the Seminar.
  3. Your instructor will assign each member of the class, as part of the Weekly Seminar inputs, one or more discussion questions from assigned reading materials. Each of you is to develop a 1-2 screen response to the assigned question(s) and submit them to the Virtual Classroom on or before day three of the seminar week. Your response should both answer the fundamental question asked and provide an example of a related instance from your workplace. In addition to your submission, you are expected to review the responses of your fellow students and comment as appropriate on their contributions. Your comments relative to experiences in your workplace are particularly useful in helping all of us to develop a complete understanding of the concept as it relates to the real world.
  4. Complete midterm exam by DAY 7 of the seminar week and submit to the instructor's Mailbox.
  5. By Day 7 of the Seminar week, please individually prepare and submit a 1-2 screen summary of what you felt were the key items covered in this seminar and how they might apply in the workplace.

 

SEMINAR 5:

In seminar 5, we will look at what is involved with developing and implementing an online program. We will discuss and explore the challenges associated with bringing a program into an institution or organization.

Specific learning objectives for this Seminar are as follows:

  • Identify what elements are to be considered in the development and implementation of an online learning program
  • Identify where online programs will work and areas where online programs may not be applicable

 

Assignments:

  1. Required Reading. Read the Text Chapters 9, 10, and 11
  2. Work on the Group projects - discuss any concerns associated with the projects
  3. Your instructor will assign each member of the class, as part of the Weekly Seminar inputs, one or more discussion questions from assigned reading materials. Each of you is to develop a 1-2 screen response to the assigned question(s) and submit them to the Virtual Classroom on or before day three of the seminar week. Your response should both answer the fundamental question asked and provide an example of a related Instance from your workplace. In addition to your submission, you are expected to review the responses of your fellow students and comment as appropriate on their contributions. Your comments relative to experiences in your workplace are particularly useful in helping all of us to develop a complete understanding of the concept as it relates to the real world.
  4. Form four teams and complete the following group project assignment.

In seminar 5 there are 4 scenarios which we will pursue. The class is already divided into 4 groups; each team answer 1 question, and submit the answer to the VC for discussion by the whole group. The problem is due to the VC on day 5 of the seminar (or sooner). You are welcome to create a meeting room to work on the project (send me the name of your meeting and invite me if you decide to do this). The entire class can share information when the groups submit the reports on DAY 5 of the seminar.

I am NOT looking for detailed and accurate costing models. What I am interested in is how you will think about the scenario assigned to your group and what you think is important in the costing. Please don't take a lot of time trying to do spreadsheets or such - a good estimate made by group consensus is adequate for what we are trying to do here.

Group 1
Approximate the costing of a distance learning program using the web as the total communication package. Define what the costs to the students and institution will be (cost to the student and total cost to institution per student for the technology). Assume that the typical student cost is $7.25 per month/per student to use the virtual campus. There is a one time set up fee of $750.00 to the institution to set up the virtual campus. You decide which software package to use, how the students will link up etc., Use 20 students as the class size and the course is 6 weeks long. We want a per month cost that each student will incur and the cost to the institution. The IPP connect is $20.00 per month per student.

Group 2:
Approximate the costing of an online distance learning program using direct dial access as the means of linking up. Define what the costs to the student and institution will be. You decide where the server will come from and how involved the institution will be in administering the program. Assume that the cost per student utilizing the software providers server is $60.00 per month/per student with a one-time charge of $100.00 dollars for the software and the connection processing. (you are welcome to cost out bringing the technology in-house). The course will be 6 weeks long and has 20 students signed up.

Group 3 :
Decide how many students should be in an on-line class (use the class we are currently participating in as the model). Assuming the revenue is $300.00 per student, the faculty expense is $1800.00 per class, and the all other fixed and variable costs = $60.00 per student.

Should the class size be: 10, 15, 30, or 50. Discuss the implications of each.

Group 4:
You are on a team to develop a pay scale for on-line instructors. 6 seminars, going for 6 weeks. Determine what should be considered in this process and what the salary structure should be. Give your rational. Student count may range from 10 to 30 students.

5. By Day 7 of the Seminar week, please individually prepare and submit a 1-2 screen summary of what you feel were the key items covered in this seminar and how they might affect your workplace.

Seminar 6:

In Seminar 6, we will concentrate on the presentation and critique of the Group Team Projects. We will also look at the future of online learning technologies defining critical trends and how to factor these trends into strategic planning for online products and programs.

Specific learning objective for this Seminar are as follows:

  • Be able to synthesize the content of this course into a project that reflects understanding of the concepts presented in the course. This will be accomplished in a team environment.

Assignments:

  1. Required Reading. Read the Text Chapter 12
  2. Locate and article on the web and critique the article and send a one page summary to the VC by DAY 4 of the Seminar.
  3. By Day 3 of the Seminar, submit your team project to the Virtual Classroom. Comment on the submissions of others - accept their comments relative to yours. Change your paper as necessary to bring it to the highest reasonable level - I will view and grade your papers on Day 7 of the Seminar.
  4. Complete your final examinations and submit to your instructor's private mailbox by DAY 5. No summary is required this week.

 

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