AHHHH! I cannot believe the course is over!
At the beginning of this course I was questioning how I was going to make it through! The thought of switching courses even passed through my mind but, I am VERY glad I did not go down that path. ETAP 640 is a great course! At this point, I feel any teacher who is teaching should take this course for multiple reasons. This course does not just teach about online teaching, it speaks about what is necessary for the future of our students and if we truly are educators we want the BEST for our students! The best for our students is very different that the past had offered. Today’s students need to be engaged and stimulated constantly due to the technology that is offered in the 21st century. Everything is changing in our world and that means education needs to as well! Within this change the way education is being delivered in terms of the type of classroom has changed as well. The traditional classroom of four walls and a chalkboard is not longer the only way. Online education is now a huge part of education. Not only did I take a few of my undergraduate courses online more than half of my masters was online! This was great! EDTECH published an article on the 50 Striking Statistics About Distance Learning in Higher Education, a few of the statistics I want to highlight are:
18% of undergraduate students are predicted to receive 80% or more of their education through online courses by 2013.
15% of college students who have taken a class online have earned a degree entirely online.
39% of all adults who have taken a class online say the format’s educational value is equal to that of a course taken in a classroom.
48% of faculty members believe that virtual learning is essential to a 21st-century classroom, compared to 53% of students.
50% of college presidents predict that 10 years from now most of their students will take classes online
I truly believe these statistics are only going to rise! The thought that I am not completely sure about is whether education will every completely be online. Personally, I do not think it will as the option for traditional learning should still be available as the online learning environment is not for everyone but, I do believe as students get older it will be more prominent in their education.
Things that helped me with my learning throughout the course the most are Alex (the professor), setup of the course, learning environment. Alex was very helpful in this course and always managed to push your thinking and learning to the next level. This was great! I personally need that extra push at times due to having a mental block with the possibilities. The setup of the course was perfect! Not only was a great example of how a online course should be setup and what should be included, it was organized in a way for the student to understand what needs to be done and where help can be found. You never felt like you were alone in this course which is how other online courses heave felt! It was great to have a great model to go on, especially as you were going through it, to create your own course after! I love that the grade book was updated as we went; I never felt that I did not know how I was doing in the course. The not knowing drives me crazy! LOL Video feedback for our course was wonderful, not only did we hear you verbally but it was while you were looking at our course and showing us what you were talking about. This makes it sooo much easier to understand. One thing that specifically sticks out in my mind that I have learned in this course is the amount of time it takes in creating a successful online learning environment. There is a lot of work and thought that needs to go in to the creation but, it is worth it!
The only thing that I believe hindered my learning in this course was my personal life. It was all positive but, it does take time away. This summer I had a lot going on and unfortunately the course at time fell to the back burning. This summer I taught summer school and was a nanny while also going into school for summer curriculum writing a few days. On top of the summer jobs, I got engaged, moved into our new house and got a new puppy, Ivy(Pics below)! She is a lot of work but could not see our life without her now!
THANK YOU to Alex and all my classmates for an excellent course and lots of new knowledge. This was my last course for my Master’s and I am so happy to have it completed but even though it is finished I do see myself coming back for more courses! (just need a little break first J)
One last thing before I go, the following video I saw on a coworkers Facebook page and it is truly inspiring!