We recently announced that Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) won a Gates Foundation grant for the creation of a Developmental Education Math MOOC. Tri-C chose to use CourseSites (powered by Blackboard) as their MOOC platform of choice. We checked with Dr. Charles Dull, Assistant Dean of eLearning and Innovation at Tri-C, to understand their motivation for creating a MOOC and its design goals.
Sign up for the Tri-C Pre-Algebra MOOC starting April 1st and check out the CourseSites MOOC Catalog to see what other institutions are doing.
Q: Why did you create a Math MOOC specifically for Developmental Education? Who was the course designed for?
A: The Tri-C Math MOOC was created for multiple audiences, including first generation college students, adult students, and high school students who need to prepare to enter DevEd courses post-graduation. It is also designed for students who need help bringing their math skills to a college-ready level or improving math placement scores by preparing them prior for taking the test. The intent for the MOOC is to allow students to lessen their time spent in remedial coursework by testing into a higher level math than they otherwise would have without taking the MOOC.
Q: How will the creation of this MOOC help you meet your institution-wide goals?
Buffalo State will be launching a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on January 16th called “Locating, Creating, Licensing and Utilizing OERs”. They have utilized CourseSites by Blackboard as their MOOC platform.
I interviewed Beth Burns and Mark McBride, from the course design team, to learn more about their experiences throughout the design and development process. Beth Burns is an Instructional Designer at Buffalo State and Adjunct English Instructor, Genesee Community College. Mark McBride is the Coordinator of Library Instruction and Coordinator of Library Liaison Program at Buffalo State.
1. What was the motivation behind providing a course on Open Educational Resources (OER)?
We are both strong advocates for affordable and accessible education for everyone. We believe that everyone should be able to achieve their educational goals regardless of cost. We also have witnessed first hand that many educators either are unaware of what OERs are or how they can be used in their teaching and scholarship. Furthermore, we know many faculty who are using OER and their work with them is not being recognized as scholarly. We wanted to build a course that could create a community of practice. A place where like-minded people could gather, discuss, support each other and create.
At ISTE this past June, I had the opportunity to meet Cybrary Man. Cybrary Man (a portmanteau of Cyber and Library) is Jerry Blumengarten, a former New York state-based educator who spent years compiling educational resources from around the web and then sorted them by subject area and audience type on his blog.
He has a cult-like following in the K-12 community and it’s easy to understand why – he offers an endless number of instructive content and resources for teachers, browsing sites made by academics, educators, and students. Despite its 1.0 look, it’s really one of the best resources I’ve come across in a long time.
If you’re not familiar…
What I love about the Cybrary Man site is its simplicity and its expansiveness. The site is broken down into sections by audience – Parents, Students, Educators and General Interest. One of my favorite topics is on the Flipped Classroom. The premise of making lectures the homework and using class time for more interactive learning is one we discuss frequently on the Blackboard blog, as well. Cybrary Man has compiled an extensive list of resources on the topic from articles, to podcasts, to people to follow on Twitter.
Cybrary Man is a resource that’s both fun to explore and educational. See for yourself!