This structured approach but informal presenting style kept the pace flowing but allowed the educators’ personalities to emerge; learners were excited not only to have their questions answered but to be name-checked; all of which created a sense of intimacy and personalisation that increased learner interactivity, while the live questions on topical issues created a sense of spontaneity.
There’s never any guarantee that a group of people who happen to have been placed in a team together will be able to achieve a goal, or will rise to a challenge when a project starts to go off the rails. But the combination of creative and open-minded recruitment, and creative and open-minded line and project management, can really make the difference between a job done, and a job so well done that the team becomes a successful unit time, and time, again.
Collaboration, pragmatism, joint endeavor and four months later you have a MOOC worthy of an award!
If anyone other that the OU had taken a lead in disseminating MOOCs in the UK, I think we’d rightly feel that we’d missed the boat. The challenge now is to find the right balance. We can’t afford to give everything away for free.
The opinions of the student should be paramount in any university, and I engaged with many of my fellow learners while I was studying for my undergraduate degree. The common consensus between us was that print media is valued and well loved by everyone, and while interactive and seamless content is going to be a brilliant step forward in terms of pedagogical progress nothing beats learning from a book.
Overall, the experience of making the MOOC was one of the most enjoyable and rewarding I’ve had working at the OU.