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Showing posts from October, 2012

University of Canberra contributions to Mahara

The Teaching and Learning Centre at UC this year contributed funding for a wishlist item we submitted. Half of the functionality landed in Mahara version 1.5 (SafeIFrames support). SafeIFrames allows Mahara to white-list entire domains that are considered safe with regard to their embedded code. Prior to this an administrator/coder had to white-list highly specific URL's, which do change. The system was difficult/costly to maintain and wasn't very flexible for users. The other half of the functional requirements have now landed in Mahara 1.6, that is the ability for the administrator to manage the white-list of domain names (an array in the backend) from the Mahara web interface. UC, along with the other contributes, have been given credit on the 1.6 release page: https://mahara.org/interaction/forum/topic.php?id=4967

Moodle helping with moderation

This semester in the Assessment and Evaluation unit, the moderation of assignments was the usual process. I was given some names of people who's assignments I should mark to compare against the unit conveners judgement. This involved taking the names, going to Moodle, finding the list of submitted assignments, downloading them after finding the students, and in this case printing them out so I could mark them up with my commentary. Once graded a meeting was held, notes and judgements compared, i.e. moderation took place. After this grades were uploaded to Moodle. I've also been part of larger teaching teams of 5 in units with 300 students. Moderation comprised of selecting our highest and lowest marks and comparing our chosen assignments and judgements in a meeting. Apart from providing the assignments to download and then taking the final marks Moodle was not able to help with any other aspect of the moderation process. But why not? Following the popular 80/20 rule (80

Finding opportunities through ePortfolios

Story by Dr Felicia Zhang "Wanting people to know your work on Mahara? This was how I did it. I went to a conference in Vietnam recently which was for 3 days. Throughout the conference I networked with a few people but of course missed quite a few too. On the day of my departure from Hanoi, I shared a bus trip of one hour in length with a professor from Hong Kong’s Institute of Education and found that we shared the same academic interests and were both passionate about what we do. I then produced my high tech QR business card (see below) and told him that behind my QR code is my CV on Mahara. I came back to Australia a day later and the following day, the same Professor sent me a conference announcement in Suzhou, China and within 3 hours, I got invited to a key note address in China for that conference. I can only say QR code and my CV on Mahara have been the best advertising tool for my career this year. You can try out the QR code on this page to see my CV

Teaching strategies of interest - Socratic Questioning

While moderating an assignment recently Socratic Questioning was mentioned as a teaching strategy used by the course participant. Socrates used a teaching strategy based on asking pupils questions to develop deeper understanding, which is a strategy commonly used in teaching law I'm told. I researched the strategy and when I saw this page I wanted to share it. http://changingminds.org/techniques/questioning/socratic_questions.htm

ePortfolio Australia Forum 2012 - My take.

  2012 ePortfolios Australia Forum    ~ Thursday 27 September 2012 (Australia Catholic University, North Sydney Campus), with; Student ePortfolio Showcase (STePS)   ~ Friday 28th September (Sydney Conservatorium of Music, University of Sydney - pictured above) . Sessions attended: Paul Seiler: ePortfolios in the New Zealand School Sector (Guest Speaker) Jennifer Rowley + Team, University of Sydney: OLT ePortfolio Project (Guest Speaker) Alison Poot (Pebble Pad): Making it fail - how to effectively mess-up an ePortfolio implementation (See image below). (Pair, Share, Present ideas, Discussion) Kristina Hoeppner: Learning by doing and sharing: ways to collaborate on and for ePortfolios. (Discussion focused) Poster sessions: UCPortfolio implementation. 20x20 session:  Ashley Jones & Margaret Granger, The use of eportfolios within professional development. Matt Thompson, ePortfolios for assessment and moderation. Julie White, Skills recognition in the rural

ePortfolio Australia Forum - Poster Presentation

On the 27th October I had the opportunity to present a poster at the ePortfolio Australia Forum in Sydney. I'm happy to answer any questions it raises about the University of Canberra's ePortfolio implementation. Poster (PDF)  (higher quality)