February 21-22, 2013 - MOOCs

The Transformation Imperative: How could disruptive models for course delivery transform higher education? Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)
February 21 and 22, 2013

The third event of The Transformation Imperative: reframing the university explored MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) and their potential to transform higher education in such areas as course delivery, curriculum development, pedagogy, and tuition structure.

Thursday, February 21, 2013
Panel Discussion #1: MOOCS and their impacts on teaching and learning
Alan Filreis, Director, Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing, University of Pennsylvania 
Rebecca Griffiths, Program Director of Online Learning, Ithaka S+R 

Alan Filreis and Rebecca Griffiths anchored the first event about Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) by defining a MOOC, describing the process of teaching a MOOC, and reviewing performance and effectiveness of current MOOC models. Al Filreis provided insights from his experiences preparing and teaching a poetry course in a MOOC format for Coursera, and Rebecca Griffiths described her research to evaluate the impact of interactive online learning environments, such as MOOCs, on student learning outcomes and cost reduction. 

Friday, February 22, 2013
Discussion Session: How do online environments change the role of the instructor?
A conversation with Stephen Downes and George Siemens    

This interactive discussion explored how online environments reframe traditional notions of classroom instruction in terms of management, instruction, and pedagogy. We addressed questions such as:

    • How do online environments support student engagement and interaction?
    • What are new and emerging pedagogies in online environments? 
    • What are effective methods of communication in virtual classroom environments?
    • What methods do peer-to-peer connection and communication contribute to online courses and learning? How?
    • Does technology enhance or support diverse learning styles in the classroom?
    • What is the speed and pace of online teaching and learning?  

Stephen Downes, "The Role of the Educator," December 6, 2010
Andrew Ng, "Learning From MOOCs," Inside Higher Ed, January 24, 2013 

Panel Discussion #2: The future of MOOCs, technology and the university
Stephen Downes, Senior Researcher, Canada's National Research Council
George Siemens, Researcher and Strategist, Technology Enhanced Knowledge Research Institute, Athabasca University

Stephen Downes and George Siemens, the pioneer faculty who co-taught the first MOOC in 2008, shared their thoughts on the future of technology and the University and where MOOCs may be going. Specifically, they discussed new pedagogies and the emerging role of the educator within interactive, connective learning environments. They also explored the impacts of technology on the traditional university model and the new opportunities for innovation with technology in higher education.


Filreis Alan Filreis has published books on the literary politics of modern poetry, a new edition of the radical 1943 novel Tucker's People by Ira Wolfert (Illinois, 1998) an edition of Wallace Stevens's correspondence with Jose Rodriguez Feo (Secretaries of the Moon, 1986), and many articles on modern poetry and painting, and the literary and cultural politics of the 1950s. Stevens and the Actual World, a literary biography of Wallace Stevens, was published by Princeton University Press. Another book, Modernism from Right to Left, was published by Cambridge University Press. His most recent book is Counter-revolution of the Word: The Conservative Attack on Modern Poetry, 1945-1960 (University of North Carolina Press).

Filreis has won nearly every teaching award Penn gives, including the Lindback Award and the Ira Abrams Award. He was also named Pennsylvania Professor of the Year in 2000 by the Carnegie Foundation. Aside from teaching modern American poetry, he has offered a series of courses on twentieth-century American decades, and another on the literature of the Holocaust.

He is Director of the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing, which in 2003 brought together all of Penn's writing programs. He is founder and Faculty Director of the Kelly Writers House at 3805 Locust Walk. With Charles Bernstein, he co-founded and co-directs PennSound, the world's largest archive of recordings of poets performing their work. He is the Publisher of Jacket2 magazine. He is a member of several boards, including that of the Wallace Stevens Journal and the Writers Center at SUNY Purchase, and is Vice President of the Board of Trustees of Frost Valley (http://www.frostvalley.org/). He served for many years as the Chairman of the Board of XPN (88.5 FM; www.xpn.org) and as Chair of the Residential Faculty Council at Penn.

He frequently lectures on humanities computing, digital poetics, and teaching with technology. Students are invited to follow him through Facebook, Google Plus, twitter, Yelp, and by daily RSS feeds from Jacket2. Subscribe to his commentary at http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=afilreis.

Source: http://www.english.upenn.edu/People/AlFilreis

Articles and Books
Filreis, Alan. Modernism from Right to Left Wallace Stevens, the Thirties and Literary Radicalism. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1994. Print.

Filreis, Alan. Counter-revolution of the Word: The Conservative Attack on Modern Poetry, 1945-1960. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 2008. Print.

Filreis, Alan. "The President of This Sentence: Bob Perelman's History" Jacket 39 (2010). http://jacketmagazine.com/39/perelman-filreis.shtml

Filreis, Alan. "The Stevens Wars" Poetics Studies Papers (2009). http://repository.upenn.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1001&context=poetics_papers

Today Show Interview: http://video.today.msnbc.msn.com/today/50144621#50144621

Additional Selected Works: http://works.bepress.com/afilreis/

Siemens George Siemens is an internationally known writer, speaker, and researcher on learning, networks, technology and organizational effectiveness in digital environments. Together with Stephen Downes and Dave Cormier, Siemens has pioneered open connectivist courses that have included thousands of educators and students as participants.  He is the author of Knowing Knowledge, an exploration of how the context and characteristics of knowledge have changed and what it means to organizations today, and the recently released Handbook of Emerging Technologies for Learning. Siemens is currently a researcher and strategist with the Technology Enhanced Knowledge Research Institute at Athabasca University. Previously, he was the Associate Director, Research and Development, with the Learning Technologies Centre at University of Manitoba. His PhD, through University of Aberdeen, was on sensemaking and wayfinding in complex information settings.

His research interests include social software, learning networks, emerging technology, learning analytics and visualization, and the design of organizations in response to social and technological change pressures. He is a frequent keynote speaker at conferences detailing the influence of technology and media on education, organizations, and society, having presented at conferences in more than 30 countries. His work has been profiled in provincial, national, and international newspapers (including NY Times), radio, and television. His research has received numerous national and international awards. He will receive an honorary doctorate from Universidad de San Martín de Porres for his pioneering work in learning, technology, and networks in May 2012. Siemens has maintained the elearnspace blog (www.elearnspace.org/blog) for eleven years and www.connectivism.ca for six years.  Additional background information is available at www.elearnspace.org/about.htm.

Sources: http://cck11.mooc.ca/facilitators.htm and http://www.educause.edu/members/george-siemens

Bousquet, Marc. "Good MOOC's, Bad MOOC's." The Chronicle of Higher Education. N.p., 25 July 2012. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://chronicle.com/blogs/brainstorm/good-moocs-bad-moocs/50361.

Siemens, Geroge. "Through the Open Door: Open Courses as Research, Learning, and Engagement." EDUCAUSE.edu. N.p., 5 Aug. 2010. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://www.educause.edu/ero/article/through-open-door-open-courses-research-learning-and-engagement.

Siemens, George. Knowing Knowledge. S.l.: S.n., 2006. 2006. Web. 4 Feb. 2013. http://www.elearnspace.org/KnowingKnowledge_LowRes.pdf.

Siemens, George, David Cromier, Bonnie Stewart, and Alexander McAuley. The MOOC Model for Digital Practice. Publication. University of Prince Edward Island through the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, 2010. Web. 4 Feb. 2013. http://www.elearnspace.org/Articles/MOOC_Final.pdf.

Downes Stephen Downes is a senior researcher for Canada's National Research Council and a leading proponent of the use of online media and services in education. As the author of the widely-read OLDaily online newsletter, Downes has earned international recognition for his leading-edge work in the field of online learning. He developed some of Canada's first online courses at Assiniboine Community College in Brandon, Manitoba. He also built a learning management system from scratch and authored the now-classic "The Future of Online Learning". At the University of Alberta he built a learning and research portal for the municipal sector in that province, Munimall, and another for the Engineering and Geology sector, PEGGAsus.

Prior to joining the NRC, Downes worked for the University of Alberta as an information architect, and prior to that, as a distance education and new media design specialist for Assiniboine Community College in Brandon, Manitoba. This followed a decade of teaching experience both in person and by distance with Athabasca University, the University of Alberta, and Grande Prairie regional college.

Downes also pioneered the development of learning objects and was one of the first adopters and developers of RSS content syndication in education. Downes introduced the concept of e-learning 2.0 and with George Siemens developed and defined the concept of Connectivism, using the social network approach to deliver open online courses to three thousand participants over two years. Downes has been offering courses in learning, logic, philosophy both online and off since 1987, has 135 articles published in books, magazines and academic journals, and has presented his unique perspective on learning and technology more than 250 times to audiences in 17 countries on five continents.

He obtained a BA and MA in philosophy from the University of Calgary, specializing in epistemology and the philosophy of science. He also studied at the PhD level at the University of Alberta, completing all but his dissertation.

Sources: http://www.downes.ca/me/index.htm and http://cck11.mooc.ca/facilitators.htm

Downes, Stephen. "The Rise of MOOCs." Stephen's Web. N.p., 23 Apr. 2012. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://www.downes.ca/cgi-bin/page.cgi?post=57911.

Downes, Stephen. "What Connectivism Is." Stephen's Web. N.p., 5 Feb. 2007. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://www.downes.ca/post/38653.

Downes, Stephen. Connectivism and Connective Knowledge. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Stephens Web. 19 May 2012. Web. 4 Feb. 2013. http://www.downes.ca/files/books/Connective_Knowledge-19May2012.pdf.

Downes, Stephen. "Free Learning." Stephen's Web. N.p., 16 Aug. 2011. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://www.downes.ca/files/books/FreeLearning.pdf.

Downes, Stephen. "'Connectivism' and Connective Knowledge." The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 05 Jan. 2011. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/stephen-downes/connectivism-and-connecti_b_804653.html.

Additional Selected Works: http://www.downes.ca/articles_categorized.htm#11%20cck

Griffiths Rebecca J. Griffiths leads Ithaka S+R's growing program in online learning. In this capacity, she is managing an initiative to test whether and how Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) could be adopted by faculty to improve learning and reduce costs within public universities and colleges. This effort is undertaken in partnership with the University System of Maryland and funded by a generous grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Previously, Rebecca launched and led ITHAKA's Strategic Services practice (now part of Ithaka S+R), which provides research and advisory services to clients. In that capacity she worked with online education initiatives to deepen their understanding of the audiences they serve and to develop sustainable business plans. In addition, Rebecca advised foundations on opportunities for funding new projects and co-authored reports on sustainability of digital projects, the role of publishing in universities, and uses of open source software in higher education. Before starting the Strategic Services practice, Rebecca was a founding member of Aluka, a nonprofit initiative to develop online primary resources from and about Africa for research and teaching. The Aluka collections are now available through JSTOR.

Previously, Rebecca worked as a strategic consultant for Monitor Company in its Hong Kong and London offices. There she managed projects in media and telecommunications, helping her clients evaluate new growth opportunities, develop corporate strategies, and strengthen their organizations. She has also served as a product manager at AOL, responsible for launching new online services, and in business development at a subsidiary of News Corporation.

Rebecca has a master of business administration from MIT and a bachelor of arts from Princeton University in East Asian studies. 

Source: http://www.bisg.org/what-we-do-0-84-speaker-bios.php#griffiths

Buck, Tara. "The Massive Effect of MOOCs on Higher Education." EdTech Magazine. N.p., 24 Jan. 2013. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://www.edtechmagazine.com/higher/article/2013/01/massive-affect-moocs-higher-education

Howard, Jennifer. "The Need for a Broader Concept of Publishing in the Digital Age." The Chronicle of Higher Education. N.p., 3 Aug. 2007. Web. 04 Feb. 2013. http://chronicle.com/article/The-Need-for-a-Broader-Concept/4042.

Article from Ithaka
Bowen, William G. "The ‘Cost Disease’ in Higher Education: Is Technology the Answer?" The Tanner Lectures. Stanford University. Oct. 2012. Lecture.