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My first week as a #DigitalScholar: the adventure begins

IMG_3158It’s been a busy week taking part in the new Digital Scholar course and in this second post I’ll share my initial impressions and experience over the past few days. This online course is run on the Scholar platform, which I am new to.

Saying hello: One of the really fun aspects of the first week on the course has been getting to know the other participants. It’s been great to see greetings from a global group of participants from a pletora of different backgrounds, professions and sectors. I’ve been enjoying hearing about what others’ are aiming to get out of the course and what they are looking to achieve.

Finding my way around: that’s been more of a challenge given that I am new to the platform, the course structure etc. The course team provides a lot of guidance, including video tutorials and overviews/lists of things to do. Some aspects of the Scholar platform haven’t felt intuitive to me – e.g. the process of adding others’ as peers – but all in all I have found what I am looking for.

Noise or nice: Like other courses of this kind I have participated in, there is A LOT of activity in the first few days. Figuring out what to concentrate on and what to filter out is a key learning process. For me, adjusting email settings and finding ways of checking on updates without getting lost in hundreds of personal messages has been a learning curve. I’ve tried the Slack channels as well, although at the moment I haven’t found a use for it yet. I have tried to participate in the conversation #DigitalScholar on Twitter instead. I am not sure to what extent I am going to engage with the informal networking instead of the formal peer review process – I suspect it’ll depend on how much time I have.

Independence: One aspect of the course I really like is that it allows you to be fairly independent in how you organise and approach your work. There is a strong emphasis on figuring out how to make this work for yourself and that helps increase my engagement. I also enjoy having a new online space in which to start creating a project. There are key deadlines to work towards, so that helps keep me focused and paced through the week.

Up next: I have just over a week to finish the outline of the online course I am using as my course project. It’s a course about using reflection for CPD in Learning Technology (yes, for some of you that may sound familiar from my CMALT portfolio…;) .