#octel Week 1 Thoughts and musings

My MOOC journey to date

Last Monday I embarked on my third MOOC. The first #edcmooc was run on the Coursera platform and I enjoyed every minute of the five weeks, the course content, the participants, the non-linear platform and the staff involved all made it a total success and I even earned my completion certificate.

The second, Web Science: How The Web Is Changing… University Of Southampton, was more of a struggle for several reasons: my work load was heavy during the last four weeks, I was not a fan of the linear nature of the FurtureLearn platform and the teaching was more didactic than I would have liked. All this combined meant that I only completed the first two weeks but even this short dabble gave me enough information to fully agree with Donald Clark who sums it up much more eloquently than I could on his blog What is Plan B? Not Plan A!

So that brings me to ocTEL the content is still on my professional topic and it is a bespoke third platform and already after one week I know I will finish this course, despite the busy time of year at work. It is completely non-linear and amazingly I already recognise a few of the names of the students, I suspect from my edmooc days. Unlike the FutureLearn system there are forums, chats, areas all over with groups of similar interests/needs and I am overwhelmed with the amount of information that I would like to catch up with. Off putting? Not at all. I think I must be one of the few people who love that, I am forever, going off on tangents and love getting distracted by something that catches my eye. So much to read, discuss, learn!


  • Things I use and am comfortable with are Twitter, the discussion forums, blogs, comments.
  • Things that I have used but not in earnest and definitely not for professional communication are Google+ and LinkedIn, so these will definitely feature as part of my learning over the course.
  • Facebook I am not a fan of as by nature I am a very private person so I don’t plan to use that method for communicating with fellow students.
  • Lastly, for receiving information the ocTEL Newsletter is absolutely great for bringing so many topics together in one place and multiple links to access it all – congratulations to the team for that. I haven’t signed up for any email feeds as a few people have posted that they were getting swamped with information and the newsletter seems comprehensive enough.

Summing Up

Whilst I love reading and getting lost in all that is going on and can read anywhere at any time I do need more time and space with which to write and therefore my contributions are a lot fewer than I would like. I find myself composing replies and blogs in my head when I have a couple of minutes here and there but getting a truly clear time to be able to sit and put the words down is more difficult. Thus this is my first blog even though yesterday was officially the start of week 2.

Achievements week 1: successfully logging in, adding myself to the Google map for participants, participating in the live webinar and adding a comment to one of the discussions.

Goals for week 2: post at least three blog posts (oooh ambitious), join in at least three discussions/topics, connect with at least three new fellow TEL enthusiasts and find out what the heck the badge thing is all about!

One thought on “#octel Week 1 Thoughts and musings

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  1. Hi c_thomson: I am glad that you are enjoying #ocTEL and that you are not feeling overwhelmed. It is a wonderful opportunity to network with other professionals in the field and to find out about some of the latest technologies and approaches. i look forward to reading more of your posts.

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