Archive for April, 2009

Only connect

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

In the last few months we have been laying the ground work for the Cascade project, but now that we have our research officer, Bridget Lewis, in place we are really moving forward with our work on this.

What is really apparent at this stage is how interconnected everything is, I appreciate that this is hardly a revelation, but when you are working on very tightly defined deliverables it is really easy to ignore the implications of your choices beyond the boundaries of what you are doing.  When a significant focus of your work is looking at the bigger picture things start getting tangled.

A positive aspect of this, is how much we are genuinely taking forward outputs of  other projects that we have done over the last few years, Mosaic, Isthmus and Phoebe in particular are proving to be directly relevant, and it is great to feel that we have achieved things with them that can really improve what we are doing now.

In particular:

  • Mosaic –  better understanding of OERs, licensing and staff development materials around reuse.
  • Isthmus – what we know about our online students (although Cascade is dealing with a much larger student body than Isthmus did ) and the implications of innovating on live courses.
  • Phoebe – the tool itself as well as what we know from it about course design.

There is also a lot of overlap between Cascade and the LDSE (Learning Design Support Environment) project that we are working on with several London-based partners.  With Cascade focusing on changes in the hear and now, while the LDSE is designing for the future, they each act as a sanity check on what we are doing on the other project.