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Marsh Feldman

Online Education - Introducing the Microlecture Format - Open Education - 4 views

  • in online education “tiny bursts can teach just as well as traditional lectures when paired with assignments and discussions.” The microlecture format begins with a podcast that introduces a few key terms or a critical concept, then immediately turns the learning environment over to the students.
  • It clearly will not work for a course that is designed to feature sustained classroom discussions. And while the concept will work well when an instructor wants to introduce smaller chunks of information, it will likely not work very well when the information is more complex.
  • “It’s a framework for knowledge excavation,” Penrose tells Shieh. “We’re going to show you where to dig, we’re going to tell you what you need to be looking for, and we’re going to oversee that process.”
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  • the microlecture format similarly requires teachers to get the key elements across in a very short amount of time. Most importantly, it forces educators to think in a new way.
  • 1. List the key concepts you are trying to convey in the 60-minute lecture. That series of phrases will form the core of your microlecture. 2. Write a 15 to 30-second introduction and conclusion. They will provide context for your key concepts. 3. Record these three elements using a microphone and Web camera. (The college information-technology department can provide advice and facilities.) If you want to produce an audio-only lecture, no Webcam is necessary. The finished product should be 60 seconds to three minutes long. 4. Design an assignment to follow the lecture that will direct students to readings or activities that allow them to explore the key concepts. Combined with a written assignment, that should allow students to learn the material. 5. Upload the video and assignment to your course-management software.
    • Marsh Feldman
      Good luck! Some of my (upper-division college) students don't even read the handouts I give them about assignments. Instead, they come during office hours and ask me to tell them how to do the assignment. When they do read things, like a textbook commonly used in 100-level courses, they misinterpret concepts through their own preconceptions. For example, the textbook says, "In this field there are these eight schools of thought: ...." So one student writes, "All eight schools are good ways to understand. There's no right way." (Even though each school is highly critical of the others.) The rest of the class comments, with things like "Good insight, Oscar." The textbook is about the field, so it doesn't go into any detail about the schools' criticisms ot the others. I can either tell the students or give them additional reading they probably won't do. Unless you can anticipate every student misunderstanding and have time for microlectures on every one of them, I think you'll need to do things the old fashioned way. At least this way you can make a valiant attempt at helping them understand the material correctly.
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