Virtual School Meanderings

October 24, 2016

blendED 2016 – BOLT Students’ Learnings: Personal, Professional, and Practice Based

The fifth and final session for today that I am blogging at blendED Alberta 2016 is:

BOLT Students’ Learnings: Personal, Professional, and Practice Based

Through a partnership between the Centre for Distance Education at Athabasca University and the Alberta Distance Learning Centre(ADLC) nine professional learning modules were designed and delivered to a pilot group of ADLC teachers. The Blended and Online Learning and Teaching (BOLT) modules discussed the theory and included experiences of applying flexible learning strategies in various learning spaces. The presenters, including the BOLT pilot students, will summarize the learning experienced in the professional learning modules and how it relates to personal, professional and evidence-based practices of using flexible learning strategies with K-12 learners. By experiencing flexible learning strategies in various learning spaces, these teachers are ready to share their own lived experiences of what it means to learn and teach with digital flexibility now part of their professional repertoire.

Speakers: Dr. Connie Blomgren – Centre for Distance Education, Athabasca University

As with an earlier session, I got caught up in the conversations that occur between sessions and was late arriving to this session – so Connie had already begun.

After going over some of the literature on professional development, Connie transitioned to the actual Blended and Online Learning and Teaching (BOLT) program.  Essentially, Athabasca university took three different 3 credit hour graduate level courses focused on K-12 online and blended learning and turned them into separate modules that roughly equally 1 credit hour of instruction (see here – http://cde.athabascau.ca/bolt/module_descriptions.html – for the titles of the 9 modules).  The basic premise of the program is that there are three modules focused on blended and online pedagogy, three modules focused on learning theory, and three modules focused on technology tools and how they could be used.

The initial offering of the program was piloted with teachers from the Alberta Distance Learning Centre (ADLC), and much of the rest of the session was Connie providing quotes or illustrations or examples from those participants and their perceptions of the program.

Interestingly, one of the main student products from these modules (as opposed to research papers), has been entries on a multi-author blog that is available at:

http://bolt.athabascau.ca/

Finally, I have included images of an information postcard that was handed out during the session.

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Click on the image to view a larger version.

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