This knowledge map could consist of several layers:
2. Teachers/Course Creators
Should we, as a community get involved in constructing a definitive learning and self-assessment tool to complement Moodle? So would it go into MoodleDocs? Would it be an individual thing? Could it be made as a Teacher Aid, or a Moodle Trainer's aid? Or both. What could be the pedagogical aims of such a tool? What about the practical knowledge that it would require to satisfy the pedagogical outcomes?
I am not even sure where this question should go. There were several options, but this is the one that could get more attention - as well - this is a brand new MoodleDoc - maybe - and I would not hesitate to suggest that it takes Moodle into new and uncharted areas. So, do we want to go there?
Honesty is appreciated here...always.
It has skill sets - are they knowledge maps?
I am thinking that a knowledge map would give anyone a set of criteria that they could work towards. It does not necessarily mean qualification, or even recognition, but it would point out just how much I do not know for example.
I know lots of things about Moodle, I have installed it so many times, usually Windows installs, but a couple of Linux installs, Suse ages ago, and have not gone near any of them since as an admin - I get shifted a lot. I use Moodle in my classes, Digital Photography, Photoshop, Personal Development, Geography, History, Creative Writing, but not in my Maths classes - believe it or not - yet, and I have not done any Science for nearly three years now. The problem for me is I do not know what I do not know. While I am an "expert" compared to many people around me, I am no longer happy with the limitations of not understanding more - if that makes sense. Just as bad though, I am not sure where I can push my understanding.
If we, as a community can put together something like an outline of things that WE consider "an expert" should know in teacher/creator mode, then I suspect my understanding would expand exponentially. Same with admin - and I could help a lot more people resolve a lot of issues a lot more easily than now.
This is the end game, for me anyway, how can I expand what I know without knowing what I do not know? I ask questions, I look at forums, I respond to questions, and sometimes I get them right - but it would be better to get it right more often.
Thanks for sharing this idea. Mind maps and knowledge maps have been around for quite some time. I think the first instance of something akin to mind maps that I came across with was running on a Commodore 64, way back in the 1980s.
I am both interested in those "maps" and skeptical as to their usefulness. You say "how can I expand what I know without knowing what I do not know?" and that is a very good question, i.e. a question with no easy answer. Of course, the more you learn, the more you discover the extent of your ignorance. That discovery, far from being a matter for discouragement is, I find, an incentive for always wanting to learn more.
On a more practical ground (in Moodle), it is generally agreed that finding the information you need when you need it and - preferably - expressed in words that you will understand, is difficult. Some swear by the documentation (I hardly ever read it), others will search the forums, and yet others will just post their question to the forums without doing any previous search (we tend to not like the latter). To be able to construct a "MKM" (Moodle Moodle Knowledge Map) or -as you suggest - specific maps for specific roles would no doubt be a formidable task. Any takers?
I have used mind maps in the past, particularly for Social Ed, but I had not connected to the idea of a knowledge map until recently. The application is obvious in an enterprise or a business, even in a course, as described above, but how can I use it in Moodle?
I am actually going to experiment with a course, to see if the technique can be useful in an IB course module I am teaching. (I am surprised that I have not run into KMs there before now, or maybe I have and not recognized it as such.) It m,ay end up just being a series of checkboxes associated with a particular criteria, find that and hit the checkbox kind of thing.
I can relate to the skepticism about the usefulness of a lot of these kinds of things, they seem good, but most have a very limited application. More often, when discussed they are presented in the best possible application, so their limitations are not immediately obvious.
I am forever jumping in at the deep end of unknown things. While this has advantages, it also has drawbacks. In Moodle forums, I make comments and I hope they are mostly useful and right, but I am often wondering if I am missing the point. It is this point where the "not knowing what I do not know" comes into it. I have managed to construct an imperfect memory palace, using Matteo Ricci's ideas, but it is just not enough sometimes. It is at this point where a knowledge map would appear to me to be at its most useful and I suggest a lot of other people would find it useful too.
Amen to Joseph. I think of the American 1960s phrase, "different strokes for different folks" (Educators have a more eloquent terminology backed by research).
Never used a mind or knowledge map. I have seen them in action in a few group meetings. I am not against the idea just do not think I will participate
Helpful Moodlers also tend to focus upon different areas as Joseph points out. This is the beauty of our community of users. I like to answer the easy questions in a few forums and leave the heavy lifting to Joseph MoodleDocs is only one part of the community support network, as is Tracker, some of the newer courses and why not Knowledge maps.
For me, I suppose, I do not want to formalize too much of this, like you cannot answer questions in the forums until you complete these qualifications, that would make it too exclusive and run contrary to what I see as the spirit of Open Source. What I would like is a page that has an image on it that says at the start "If you want, these are all the things you can learn about Moodle." At the end it says something like: "Now you have gotten this far, have a think about how you might like to contribute to our Moodle Community." Of course, the choice always lies with the learner.
For one problem, could it be considered that some sort of template could be constructed for what the Community feels is an acceptable level of understanding of how to use Moodle by Students first? What is it that Students should know about Moodle? What features does the Community feel that Students should be familiar with? What features are most popular? Would that not then encourage Teachers to develop resources and activities using those features?
I know this is a little different to what I was thinking about earlier, but who's need is greater?
This intrigues me. If I understand you correctly, you are suggesting that the Moodle community constructs a "map" of how Moodle operates and how it can be customised? If so, this seems a worthy idea. I often use programs for which I have partial knowledge but hate wading through references trying to find guidance in a new area. A simple "do x then y" is often all the user needs.
How would you see this progressing? The forums contain a vast amount of information but finding the right material can be more luck than judgement as each users has their own terms and descriptions. Anything that can systematise these data would be valuable. It would also highlight areas of insufficient study which is where I see a knowledge map as being useful.
I'm not sure if it would have layers, I'd prefer branches off the main path. I use Moodle as a teacher but I also have admin rights and can set up a range of features if needed so I'd be in more than one 'layer'. Following this path, the constructivist pedagogy informs all aspects and so there would be no need for an overt statement.
Let me what you think - it could be a very interesting puzzle. Solving it might have applications elsewhere especially if, as in Australia, we start to come to terms with the ageing workforce and the need to keep our knowledge value.
I am thinking more along the lines of what do I need to know about Moodle to make me proficient in using it. What do I need to know to be able to teach my students adequately in using the Moodle. At the same time, telling students "go here, do this" is not really what they need in some areas. That does not really explain how a database or a glossary works, or how it fits into a Moodle or how they can best utilize it.
What I am thinking about is how can I get students to take charge of their own learning? I can give them tools and directions, but how does this help them actually learn anything? If I build a knowledge map of studying the collapse of the Republic and the rise of the Emperors, and give them that, that helps them know what areas they need to research. The application is useful and obvious. Now, how can I then translate that to Moodle? I know a lot about Rome, but how much do I really know about Moodle? That is what I would really like to find out.