Friday, September 3, 2010

September 6th Working collaboratively, planning and recording decisions

Online collaboration and planning can be facilitated by a range of communication tools including blogs and wiki.

A blog can be purely a personal tool for recording decisions or reflections. But it can be much more than that. A blog can be part of a blogging network which is what we are building in this course. We each have a blog, we each should be monitoring each other's progress, and we should be commenting and cross referencing each other's posts from time to time. Hopefully by now, we ARE doing all this and are starting to see how a blogging network can function, but ours is a small and time dependent network. Real blogging networks develop over longer periods of time and include strong and weak connections between people, and a much more diverse range of topics. The online facilitator can use his or her blogging network for feedback, sharing information, as well as asynchronous discussion.

Wiki are collaborative tools and can be used for planning, implementation and evaluating events and projects. The beauty of the open wiki such as Wikieducator is the community behind the wiki that can be called on for help, opinions and support. Online communities through wikis are harder to identify as they usually focus around the creation of shared content. Wikis usually have a discussion tab with each page, and you can sometimes see community-like communication there. We will use this wiki to coordinate our mini conference so we can each experience collaboration through a wiki.

NB: An alternative collaboration tool to blogs and wiki is Google Documents.

Web Conferencing

Attend this week's course meeting on Friday 10th September 11am (World Clock). This week we will be joined by Dr Wayne Mackintosh who is a key member of the Wikieducator community. Wayne will be talking about how you can use a wiki to facilitate collaboration, organise meetings, events, projects, learning activities etc. This session will be facilitated by Malcolm and Claire.

  • This session will be held in the free web conference platform DimDim. DimDim is a tool you may be interested in if you are a business or non-profit organisation who cannot afford to pay for a propitiatory platform such as Elluminate.
  • Information about how to use DimDim here
1. Read Introduction to Blogging - part of the excellent Wordpress Codex.
2. Watch the video by CommonCraft about wiki on YouTube: Wikis in Plain English.
3. Watch this video about Google Documents on YouTube.
4. Read at least two blog posts from other course participants, join in the discussion by leaving a comment on each post.

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