Hybrid Learning Model, University of Ulster

Rob Ridge-Stearn, Head of e-Learning at Newman University College in Birmingham,  brought this model and yet another set of useful facilitation of cards to my attention via his blog post, Old MOOCS W3 Conceptualising with Cards, in response to the Week 3 activities in the OLDS MOOC, which draw participants into the next stage of designing their dream course.

As we move from the more theoretical process of conceptualisation into the more practical realm of ideation, we are asked to contemplate/preview/share/explore and experiment with a range of tools in the week 3 cloudworks learning design toolbox, several which I have been using to redevlop modules in ULT – the OULDI Course Features Cards and the Course Map.

Rob suggests using the CETL Utilising Institutional E-Learning Services To Enhance The Learning Experience, University of Ulster’s ‘Hybrid Learning Model Event Cards, once the Course Map is completed, to articulate and define the specific learning activities.

The model proposes eight interactional learning events: receives, debates, experiments, creates, explores, practices, imitates and meta-learns. These events are explored in terms of the teacher and learner, using associated verbs. The model is supported by flash cards that depict the eight learning events (8LEM). For further information about the HLM, click here.

It is then suggested that the events are mapped to a mapping grid – the CETL Utilising Institutional E-Learning Services To Enhance The Learning Experience, University of Ulster’s Hybrid Learning Model – Mapping Grid.

See an online slideshow about the process of using the Flashcards here

I must say, I am really enjoying using all of these cards! They help me visualise the learning design and structure the process in a manner that is freeform, flexible and dynamic. I am thus able to perceive elements of the course framework as a work-in-progress –  the cards can be rearranged during subsequent stages of collaboration and reflection,  up until the point we wish to create version 1. And it remains endlessly malleable.

I intend to add these cards to my toolkit and try them with the design and development of the Learners and Learning model.

Teaching Understanding and Backwards Design

The Backwards Design theory by Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe interests me and I will look more closely at their research, starting with:

What is Backward Design? From the ASCD book Understanding by Design by Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe


The Principles of Backward Design by the Tasmanian Department of Education

In our course, we teach academics about the ‘constructive alignment’ of learning outcomes. This means that, for every learning module/unit, we align the learning outcomes with:

  • the teacher’s intention
  • the teaching and learning strategies
  • the resources used and developed in the unit
  • learning activities
  • the assessment task/s

John Biggs created the term constructive alignment and he explains the concept on his website: http://www.johnbiggs.com.au/academic/constructive-alignment/. Or you can watch a movie on YouTube that explains the theory: Teaching Teaching and Understanding Understanding

Force Maps

Force maps are graphical representations of the positive (+ = supportive factors) and negative (- = tensions) relationships between the key elements in a design challenge. The map helps to identify and hopefully resolve some of the tensions.

Yishay Mor, yishay.mor (at) open.ac.uk provides several good examples on the Learning Design Grid Force Map page (a collaborative Google site)

Example 1

force map 4

Example 2

force map 2

OLDS MOOC week 2 ‘Inquire’: plans for learner context and scenario-based learning design

During week 2, we are going to investigate learning design, and the context of our own learning design, or design challenge (our dream project description from week 1).

This contextualisation activity feeds forward from the final activity in week 1 – where we collaboratively created a huge mindmap (brainstorm) of all of the things learning design might encompass

My Plans for Week 2

I am choosing to work individually, not by choice, but by the demands of my busy works schedule. I have invited others to join me in my project (however I did post my dream project and forum request 2 weeks late!), and have located some related projects, however, after reading many discussion posts, it occurred to me how time-consuming working and collaborating from scratch would be.

My goals are quite clear in undertaking this MOOC – to develop a model/framework for the (rapid) redevelopment of modules for our university learning and teaching course (I have deadlines looming!), encompassing curriculum, and a range of pedagogy, learning theories, learning designs, in a new online learning environment. I intend to develop the framework and apply it to the design of one module in this MOOC.

So the plan is to go solo with the development of my project (unless I get some offers real soon!), plough through the activities, participate in the discussion forums and collaborate with my  university team once I have a draft framework  for discussion. This is not the way I would prefer to work, but am now being ruthless, given the increasing time I am devoting to this MOOC (I am about to start a second – a Coursera: The Fundamentals in Online Education, and the contrast and comparison will be fascinating).

So, here goes… starting week 2

Theory underpinning the activities:

The following summary comes from The Learning Design Grid (a collaborative Google site -see project partner list at end of post)

The Ecology of Resources (EoR) Design Framework

The EoR Design Framework aims to optimise opportunities for learners to interact with resources and social resources/activities in meaningful ways to maximise learner performanceand achievement of outcomes. Helps learners make connections between people, objects, locations and events as they learn.

3 phases involved: see these on the eorframework wiki

Learning Design Grid

Contact: Professor Rose Luckin http://www.lkl.ac.uk/cms/index.php?option=com_comprofiler&task=userProfile&user=128

Project partners:

Force maps: see my blog post

EnRoLE: encouraging role based learning environments

Project EnRoLE is an ALTC online community for teaching the technique of online role play in higher education.

Online and blended role plays can be used to facilitate experiential learning, problem-based learning and deep learning outcomes. Participants assume a role in a virtual scenario, undertake authentic tasks in real-world situations and contexts and interact with others in the online environment through inquiry, problem-solving, collaboration, negotiation and debate.

Learning outcomes can be assessed and provide ample opportunities for participants to engage in reflective practice.

EnRoLE resources 

Learning Design Support Environment

The Learning Design Support Environment 

is an ESRC/EPSRC funded Technology Enhanced Learning project.

The online outcome of this project, a tool called the Pedagogical Pattern Collector, uses technology to engage teachers in play – in ways that help them make decisions about pedagogy and practice, and focus on what is important in their own teaching practice.

About the project:

(from the YouTube video The Learning Designer, featured on the project site)

Professor Diana Laurillard, Professor of Learning with Digital Technologies at the University of London Institute of Education, and Principal Director of the LDSE project mentions that this tool was developed to encourage teachers to be innovative in helping their students learn. It is designed for teachers and lecturers to allow them to think about teaching practice, learning design and curriculum components, whilst modelling different kinds of teaching and learning activities on the computer canvas.

Patricia Charlton, a researcher on artificial intelligence, cognitive science and technology enhanced learning at the London Knowledge Lab, and Research Fellow of LDSE, describes how the system they have developed expands and grows through the interaction between the system, individual teacher users and the community of users.

Dr Liz Masterman, who leads the pedagogical research and evaluation activities, explains how useful the tool is for making the transition from face-to-face learning to online learning, where you need to redesign what is delivered and accessed online.

Professor Laurillard makes the point that the system actually captures pedagogy. It provides opportunities to map how teachers will teach and to visualise learning design. She affirms that use of the tool generates a reflective, iterative process where teachers adopt, adapt, test, reflect and publish  – a cycle of reuse and change that supports innovation.

How teachers use the PPC Browser environment

  • Select a pedagogical pattern
  • Insert elements related to specific learning outcomes
  •  Adapt the pattern to create a customised teaching session or unit of work
  • Specify and sequence the activities related to outcomes and even link to online sites and forums etc
  • Monitor the ratio of time spent of individual learning activities
  • Save and export templates to hard drive
  • Open the PPC Designer, where the adapted template can be customised and developed to create a new unique learning design
  • The PPC Abstractor can be used to modify and abstract specific elements in the outcomes and save a generic template of this design so it can be shared with other users of the tool.

Collection of pedagogical patterns included in LDSE

  • Effects of system input on output
  • Evaluate multiple interpretations
  • Predict observe explain
  • Guess my x-process-object reationship
  • Teach to learn
  • Understanding authentic practice
  • Customising procedures
  • Learning concepts through contrasting cases
  • Understanding critical factors in system
  • Evaluating practical implications of theoretical perspectives
  • Collaborate to overcome limitations
  • Evaluate design using theory
  • Research based approach to practice