With Hans we are planning to facilitate a new cycle of the “Composing free and open online educational resources” -course in 2011. We still are not sure if we will find the time resource but let’s see.

Maybe some of the people who took the first course in 2008 could join us and work as facilitators in this? If you are interested in, please, let us know.

The wiki-page of the course 2011 is open for your edits in here:


Please, edit the course content and the course’s weekly program — make the course to match with your needs.

Graduation Party in 1910With Hans, we just checked our database of our notes and provided for the participants some “pass” and “complementary work required” statements.

The statements are now in the participants page.

We didn’t add there “fail” as we found it not to be necessary in this kind of course. Those who passed the course and those who didn’t also know it. Still, I think that also this kind of feedback is important – especially if you feel that you really did your studies and learned something.

What next?

Some people are already working on to run the course again. I hope the facilitators of the coming course will be people who “graduated” from this course. This way the lessons learned from this course will not be lost and the second course can actually be better than the first one. I think with Hans we may also give this blog in hands of those those people who wil be facilitating the second edition of the course (in English). If this is your plan, please let us know.

There were also some ideas of organizing the same course parallel in several languages and link them together, so that if people have a common language they could also comment each other’s works. The best place to plan this is probably the Wikiversity, itself. Let’s see.

We also discussed about the possibility to write an article about the course experience. I still want to do this. My personal challenge at the moment is lack of time. I am already using some materials in one research paper that is discussing about the idea of Wikiversity in a more general level, but an article that is focusing only to this specific course would be great.

Finally, for those 15 who finished all the assignments and got “passed”: If you ever need to proof for someone that you know something about open educational resources and how to create them just ask them to contact me and I will tell them.

Have a great summer, if it happens to be a summer time where you are!

EduGluSWAN FlashMeeting I hope that during last two weeks you have had some time to look at other participants blogs and reflect about the course. Many of you have posted feedback posts in your blog and there is also a wiki page with critique and feedback.

We promised to organize a video conference with people who managed to be with us until the end of the course. This is a chance to meet in real time with people whose blogs you have followed for last 10 weeks. Maybe some interesting collaboration will grow out from this course.

In the beginning we were thinking about two video conferences but then we realized that with some compromises we can find a time that most of the participants are awake. I have booked the video conference for Monday May 19th at 17:00 GMT. This time is good for Europeans, but also participants from Canada can be present. I am sorry that this decision probably leaves out Bonifatius and Mark.

We will use a web-based videoconferencing software called Flashmeeting. Flashmeeting works on Windows, Mac and Linux, all you need is a Flash player, microphone and webcam. Actually it works also without webcam, but then other people will only hear you. I will send the invitations by e-mail to all of you who are still in the active participants list. If you can’t participate next Monday, then you can look the recording of the video conference.

Baby playing with yellow paint. Work by Dutch artist Peter Klashorst.It has been an interesting 8 weeks with you all. I have been surprised how hard many of you have worked and how many of you have been willing to invest your time to make the study project an interesting experience for all. Thank you!

We are actually so excited that we are not willing to stop yet. What I am missing a bit in the course and the class is comments and evaluation of each other work in the last eight weeks of working. As this is a Wikiversity course, however, we are free to change the plans and add another extra week to the program. So let’s go one another two weeks. I hope this is ok for all?

The first final assignment for all of you is to visit each other blogs and comment the posts in there. Please, be nice for each other but also feel free to give real feedback, too, if you do not agree with something. We could all try to comment at least one blog posts in each other blogs. You will find other blogs from the list in the left side of this page.

The second final assignment is to give more general feedback about the course and the class. The wiki way is to write it together to the Wikiversity page called feedback. I already made a structure to the Composing free and open online educational resources/Critique and feedback -page. I hope that you all will write your own thoughts and suggestions how this kind of self-organized and voluntary study projects following a weekly program could be improved. This is very valuable and important for the future of the Wikiversity. So, please take some time to do this.

With Hans we are also planning one or to synchronous videoconference to meet “face to face” with all of you. The global time zones may cause so challenges but we will work it out. I am anyway in the US west cost time and Hans in time zone of the Euroland, so one of us can make it online almost anytime of the day. We will post the schedule to this blog next monday.

But, in the next coming weeks, please, spend some time reading each other blog posts and reflect also your own work. If there are some missing posts in your own “portfolio” you may still catch up with them in the coming next two weeks. We will do this with Hans, too. We will visit your blogs and comment your posts and write some reflective thoughts to this blogs.

Infinite Recycling I just completed listening your podcasts from last week. This task was perhaps a little bit more technical and we received less posts than usually. If you didn’t manage to complete the task last week, then you can try to do it this week. From the feedback it seems that people found Switchpod easier than Odeo for posting their podcast. You can see how Keith has embedded Switchpod player to his website. This week Mark introduced us his desk and Bonifatius told about his house. Rose had a nice background music played by her colleague and Juha spent some extra time to make a nice panorama photo. Thank you for another set of interesting works!

This week we will focus on video. You all probably know YouTube. Teemu absolutely loves that website. In our Wikiversity page we have links to many more online video sites. Unfortunately many of these videos are not really open educational resources. Most of the videos do not have Creative Commons licenses and you can’t download the video in a format that you can easily edit on your computer. Instead of that these sites provide you and embed code that you can use to post video on your blog or in some learning resource. You can see an example of using video in a learning resource in LeMill.

People often think that they need a video camera for making videos. Actually you can easily bypass this problem. I do not have a camcorder, so I’m taking videos with my digital photo camera or webcam when needed. The quality is not the best but I can still get the video. It is also possible to use photos, presentation slides, screen recording software (try Wink) or video clips for making your video. In YouTube there is one wonderful example of what people can make based on existing movie clips:

This week you should begin by embedding some video to your blog. After that you should try to make your own short video clip and post it to blip.tv and YouTube. You should also try to add subtitles with dotSUB. Finally you should write a post on your blog that points out the video sites that do contain openly licensed videos and suggest a process that you might go through to negotiate the open use of videos that you find that do not already have open license rights. As always, more detailed guidelines are on our Wikiversity page. Have fun!

PS. I made one video yesterday evening. It looks very amateurish, but because of my travelling I had to replace one presentation with that short video. I’m a Mac guy, so I used built in webcam, iMovie, ScreenFlow, Keynote and Audacity for doing that.

The Old Jukebox We have reached the 7th week of our course and I am happy that 17 participants are still keeping up with the tempo and a few others are a few weeks behind. Tomorrow I will do a small clean up in the list of participants. I noticed that James has just created a section for self paced study, so I will add a section for people who have started the course but are not active anymore. They have still written some interesting blog posts and I don’t want to remove all links that point to their blogs.

You posted a variety of nice photos last week: snow-white Canada, spring flowers from Sweden, stormy coast in France, beautiful Macedonia and math lesson from Indonesia are just a few ones to mention here. Also it is good to see that Marjut is back with an impressive collage of photos from a small Finnish town Kotka.

This week your works will not only look but also sound interesting. You will read about podcasting, open audio formats and Creative Commons licensed audio. You will install free audio editor Audacity, try to record your own podcast and publish it in some online service such as Odeo or Switchpod. There are more free podcasting sites, you will find something useful from Go2Web20.net when you choose podcast from their tag cloud.

We have a very simple topic for your podcast: a detailed (and creative) description of the view outside your home. You should also take a photograph of this view. Finally you should write a blog post about your reading and the process of doing a podcast. Do not forget to add link to the podcast and a photo. You will find more guidelines for this week from our Wikiversity page.

Town Hall Square in Tallinn This week we will focus on something that most of you have probably done many times before — taking digital photos. I hope that all of you will learn something new about that topic, whether it is about composing the photo, editing it on the computer or sharing in the web.

Even if you are using automatic mode on your camera you can improve your shots by careful composition. Perhaps the most widely known composition principle is the rule of thirds. You can see an examples of this and other composition rules from Digital Photography School. If you want to know more about the basics of photography you can watch a nice lecture by Joi Ito:

After reading about the composition rules you are ready to put it into practice. Take a digital camera and shoot some photos in your home town. Choose one or two pictures that can be used in learning resources.

When you have chosen the photos you probably need to do some basic image editing on them. One new and very simple image editor is Adobe Photoshop Express. It is a web-based software that you can use without installing anything on your computer. It only requires Flash player that you probably have anyway. Other options include Gimp, Paint.NET, Picasa, Seashore and various commercial image editors. I typically start editing by cropping out this part of the photo that I want to have in the final image. By cropping you can often also improve the compensation. Then I fix problems with exposure and white balance, add saturation (if needed) and sharpen the image. From YouTube you can find a lot of helpful videos about using different image editors.

Last two years I have used Flickr to post my photos online. The benefit of having your photos in Flickr is its large user base — more people have a chance to notice your photo. I publish my photos under Creative Commons Attribution license. This gives other people more freedom to reuse my photo, because they are free to choose any license they want for the derivative works that contains my photo. It is important to notice that only part of the photos in Flickr are under Creative Commons licenses. You can search and browse these at http://www.flickr.com/creativecommons/.

As a practical task you should join Flickr and upload the photos that you selected. Describe photos with tags, place them on a map and add a Creative Commons license. Please also try to upload one photo to Wikimedia Commons or LeMill. In LeMill you can add photos in the Content section. Just choose adding new content and upload the photos as media pieces.

What if you don’t have a digital camera? Don’t worry. You will definitely find a Creative Commons licensed photo from your home town or country. Find a photo that is under Attribution or Attribution-ShareAlike license. Maybe you can improve the photo by cropping out this part that you want to focus on. When you are done, please upload the result to LeMill as a media piece. Don’t forget to add who was the original author and where you found this photo.

Finally write a blog post where you summarize what you have learned from the task. Also add links to the photos that you have uploaded and found online.