With their ability to scale, MOOCs and online courses have the potential to democratize learning in unprecedented ways. But when designed poorly, MOOC platforms can perpetuate ineffective models of teaching and learning. How might we meet the challenge of consistently creating meaningful online learning experiences?
Over the past 12 months, Adobe Education has successfully run online professional development courses for educators via the Adobe Education Exchange. We’ve offered 10 free digital media courses on topics including digital imaging, animation, and app design. So far, 11,957 enrollees from 120 countries have completed more than 357 hours of online instruction, and they’ve created 15,975 instructional resources that have been shared for peer and instructor review. And best of all, over 380,000 students will benefit from their teachers’ new knowledge.
As the Adobe Education team continues to learn and grow as an online learning provider, we’re confident that:
- Online professional development can transform teaching. Self-paced online courses help educators learn new ways to use technical tools and create effective instructional designs.
- Time and money are barriers — talent is not. Our participants need more time to learn and plan, and they need more money for software and resources.
- Creativity can be fostered online. Peer collaboration via feedback and discussion as well as weekly live sessions drive engagement, completion, learning, and creativity.
To what do we attribute our success? Although we’ve iterated on our design since we first started offering courses a year ago, we think our courses have been successful for two reasons:
- We understand our audience. Our courses are designed for educators, by educators. We focus on teaching technology tools plus instructional design to meet the true needs of our audience.
- We’ve maintained three core values across all of our offerings: collaboration, creativity, and continuous learning.
If you’ll be attending #SXSWEdu this March, join our lead professional development strategist, Melissa Jones, for an interactive session on how to apply our best practices. And if you can’t attend, be sure to follow #CreateEDU and #OnlineLearningDesign on Twitter.
The entire notion of career is shifting and so are the requirements for students entering the workforce. What are the core competencies that future generations need for success? Does creativity matter? How can schools prepare students?
At SxSWedu 2015, I plan to bring together a lively panel of experts to explore these questions and share their diverse perspectives. We’ll discuss key skills needed for success in the future, how job seekers can demonstrate these skills, and the gaps that exist in preparing the next generation.
- Devin Fidler analyzes impacts of emerging technologies at the Institute for the Future. His publication, Future Work Skills 2020, makes sense of emerging trends and disruptive forces transforming the world of work. He has identified key skills for the future workforce including:
- Novel and adaptive thinking
- New media literacy
- Design mindset
- Virtual collaboration
- Omar Garriott, a Senior Product Marketing Manager at LinkedIn, focuses on products for students and universities.
- Lisa Reckis directs University Talent for Adobe. She and her team hire students from top universities for roles across all technology and business functions at Adobe.
- Tacy Trowbridge, panel moderator, leads Adobe’s Education Programs to help the next generation of students become creators and not just consumers of digital content.