I am very interested in establishing contact with teachers within the TAFE (Technical and Further Education) system here in Australia who are using Moodle. I know you are out there!!! Cummon, don't be shy... I'm just your average Language and Literacy Teacher who has taken time out to do his Masters of Education degree at UTS majoring in E-Learning and focusing this semester on E-Learning Technologies. That'e where you come in... I wanna pick your brains...oops, no, I meant politiely enquire after your feedback about using Moodle in the TAFE environment. I'm building a prototype Moodle for Adult Deaf Literacy and Numeracy and I need your experiences to inform my technology plan. Not only will you be cited in my thesis but I will also send you a box of Celebrations chocolates to consume when I graduate!!!
Seriously though, I would really like to hear from you in whatever context you are using Moodle in TAFE.
We've been using Moodle here in Burnie, Tasmania for nearly 4 years now.
Thanks for saying hello. It's great to see that Moodle has been used for so long, relatively speaking, in your teaching environment. I have only seen Moodle in my environment once before for a Community Outreach Program off-campus (Petersham TAFE,Sydney Institute) although a colleague in Adult Basic Ed. is developing something for her students. My goal is to create a Moodle that will bring together all the adult deaf students in TAFE, their teachers and their Teacher Consultants, perhaps nationwide, and provide for them the opportunity to control their learning in an entirely different way than what is possible at this time.
I am very interested to learn from your experiences using Moodle and in what contexts you are using Moodle. Do your students use Moodle solo or is Moodle used as part of a blended approach in your classrooms?
I was wondering Marcus if you were aware of what policy TAFE has that informs student access to computer technology generally and involvement in a Moodle LMS specifically? I am asking partly because I need to find out with regard to a technology plan I am constructing for a current assessment task in E-Technology but also because the normal beaurocratic channels are painfully slow so I thought I'd try and find out on the grapevine as it were.
Rob , try EDNA GROUPS They are doing some pretty amazing things with Moodle ! Also, As Martin suggested, check out the Australian Moodle Sites , lots of great TAFE ones in there
Great to meet you!! I took up your advice about EDNA. I signed on but haven't done anything there yet. I noticed most of the sites are locked. I sure as heck want to learn as much as i can about Moodle, not only for my current Master's studies but as an ongoing resource in my professional life. My Subject Co-ordinator at UTS suggested I start my own group there at EDNA with respect to my Moodle prototype, so I guess the first order of business is to contact the admin folk at EDNA and see if they can host my prototype. I ead your other post and I'll respond to it in it's own space. So stoked to hear you had a deaf student that excelled in the cyber environment. I'd lke to ask you a few questions about that but I'll do that in that posting.
Sorry, I left my next comments too late for the edit !
Rob, I applaud the subject of your thesis, because ,from my own experience using Moodle ,as a part of what we used to call 'Blended Learning', a couple of years ago, I was teaching a course at a local RTO. One of my 'students' was a deaf lady (deaf from birth) . She was 'upset' ,because she could not 'hear' the conversations at coffee breaks, which obviously made her feel 'excluded' from some parts of the whole course experience!
The course was conducted in the 'usual' classroom environment, however, I had set up a Moodle course for the participants to communicate between classes, with myself,and, or each other, via forums.and what used to be the 'journal". We did offer this particular student an interpreter in classes, however, when she 'found' the utility of our Moodle course , and the ease with which she could communicate with her tutor,or classmates , she declined the interpretor, and went on to not only complete the course, but, she was the BEST student I had in three and a half years !!
There are many 'on-line' courses ,still doing my MBA via Newcastle Uni ! (OZ) However, I don't think any of them have the Social Constructivist principles that Moodle has !! Principles that maybe take lots of words to explain, but, bottom line (from my experience) Moodle is an education system that assists 'teachers to communicate with students ','people to communicate with people' in a friendly ,and non intimidating way , which can only INMHO assist those particular 'groups' that you are focussing on for your thesis .
If I could be of any assistance at all , just holler ! (In writing, me too going deaf !!)
It's so good to meet you. Thank you very much for your support for my thesis, it is very encouraging, especially as at this time I am more humanist than techono-savvy e-learning designer (although I want to be asap!!!). By way of sharing something of my background almost everybody in my family is genetically deaf from birth. Myself and three cousins are the exception. I know first-hand about the frustration my relatives had with the social limitations of being mainstreamed within the primary and secondary eduation system. I was also a professioally qualified interpreter in the educational environment for many years and was acutely aware that having an intepreter present was less desirable than encouraging full autonomy of the deaf student to manage their learning. It wouldn't suprise you to know that many otherwise very well intentioned teachers were uncomfortable with interpreters and the interpreting process. I saw that direct education using sign language was more empowering for the student than through an interpreter and so off I went to get my B.Adult.Ed majoring in Labguage, Literacy and Numeracy at UTS whilst also co-teaching at Petersham TAFE.
I am now doing my Master of Education degree majoring in E-Learning. I am currently doing E-Learning Technologies as my third of eight subjects within my Master's Program. I am currently developing a protoype of a Moodle environment to support adult deaf literacy and numeracy education within a TAFE environment. TAFE itself isn't particularly a socially constructivist environment but I believe Moodle is the best way forward for adult deaf students in TAFE to achieve their educational goals in tandem with whatever their local subject content requires of them. I am looking forward to moving to the Independent Project in E-Learning subject so that i can launch the prototype, test it and hopefully present it to the adult deaf student communty at large. First things first right now, though. I am still working my way through a basic command of Moodle.
Your anecdote regarding your pre-lingually deaf student and her success with Moodle is a strong encouragement for me to continue. Thank you for that.
I asked Marcus this same question so I'll ask you in case you have a view upon it. Do you know what policy TAFE has about student access to e-technology generally and the use by staff of Moodle in the TAFE environment specifically? Was your deaf student already computer literate when she engaged Moodle or did she require pre-requisite skills to access Moodle?
I am so much looking forward to learning from the experiences of my TAFE colleagues using Moodle.
Cheers for now,
A few 'links' that might get the 'thinking' going ?
<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />
Also try a ‘Google’ TAFE using Moodle , HEAPS of interesting sites pop-up !
Engaging Learners with Disabilities through a Moodle (Teacher/learner Support)
Speaker: Heather Beebe and Michele Perry, TAFE NSW Sydney Institute
I also forgot to mention in my 'anecdotal' comments , that my Grandmother was deaf , only from about 40 years of age , and as a child ,I was taught to look at Grandma when I was speaking to her , as she could lip-read very well . This ,I suppose instinctively came to me ,when training my hearing impaired student , i.e. make sure you are looking at them , speak slowly etc. As I mentioned , I too am going deaf ,as did my Dad and Uncle . Attending lectures and tutorials for me,is a waste of time , (as a student) On-line gives me the same advantage as other students.!
As a trainer , I now use Moodle totally , have a squiz at my site (you will find it in my profile)
Just noticed , perhaps your subject 'line' could have been a liitle 'different' ?
Hope you don't mind ?
Don't know if this is of any help but recently I started a thread about developing a system for the deaf / disabled. You can review it in the Accessibility forum http://moodle.org/mod/forum/view.php?f=820
I have been asked to look into building systems for people with a hearing disability which is why I am also collecting information and experience.
Keep us posted on your progress if you find the time that is.
Very interesting discussions.
Hi Rob - where's UTS and why can't we access your profile?
I'm a keen Moodler in my sandbox at Polytechnic West, WA. Two of us are designing around 150 courses covering 25 qualifications in Business and Community Services. Another group is experimenting with IT & Multimedia training; and in all fairness, the entire college (of 32,000 students) is experiencing some degree of eLearning. Since we started in July, we've discovered amazing technologies: for instance, we can place all of our resources in one topic as a pearltree; and then order the activities of a course in a series of topics below.
In an actual Pearltree, pass the cursor over and you get a preview; click and you open a browser within a browser that can take you anywhere. When you have finished visiting sites (or socialising with other Pearlers - even picking their pearls) one click restores the Moodle page. The Parisian designers of Pearltrees are about to release collective sites for classes of students to work together. Their community and that of Moodle are already intertwined.