Digital me

Welcome to my blog, where I reflect on flexibel on-line learning as part of a course (FDOL 141) at Karolinska Institute. I am a family doctor, researcher and teacher. Here are my first reflections. The theme is ”digital me”.

I have found digital connection with people who I know from real life, such as family, friends and working pals, extremely useful. I correspond a lot by email and text messages. However I am not very familiar with digital open platforms. The openness frightens me because I do not know who will share my thoughts. I also find the technique confusing and think that I miss information somehow by not knowing who in the community that I should connect with or missing information in a long thread. A reflection so far in the FDOL course is that it takes time and experience to understand the structure of an on-line community.

However, in this first two weeks of the FDOL course I have managed to start a blog, twitter account and have joined a google+ group. I liked the picture of “being in the driving seat of your learning” that was given in the interview “learning through problems” with dr Leslie Robinson http://www.diigo.com/user/chrissinerantzi/pbl. Right now I feel like entering a car for the first time trying to find the gas pedal and brake by just reading the manual.

Since I am in the driving seat I must decide where I shall drive, what I would like to get out of the FDOL course.  My goal is to achieve skills that can help me to create on-line courses for education of medical students in the area of family medicine. I would also like to be able to create open platform (not a closed university platform) national on-line courses for doctors at vocational training in family medicine and maybe international on-line courses for specialists in family medicine. I think that on-line learning is a valuable complement in education. One of many advantages is that the learner is forced to be active and cannot hide being quiet in the classroom. Another advantage is the flexibility, both in time and place, which makes it possible for more students to join in. My dream is to increase online learning in specific courses for family medicine. Currently digital platforms are used widely in family medicine to obtain information. However, as far as I know, there are still very few courses given in digital form in family medicine. I would like to change that.

I have just started to get into the literature of flexible on-line learning. Coomey et al a present a “paradigm grid” for on-line learning in the paper “Online learning: it is all about dialogue, involvement, support and control-according to the research”. This grid is a good help when starting to think and learn about online flexible learning.

                                                      Specified tasks

 NW                     NE

       Teacher controlled                                                Learner managed

SW                     SE

                                               Open-ended, strategic                  Coomey et al a

I think that the FDOL course is in the south-east quadrant (SE) of the grid with “learner managed and open-ended activities”. I will surely experience how this type of on line learning works by attending the FDOL course.

And hopefully I will soon drive on a motorway………….

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5 thoughts on “Digital me”

  1. I notice that we have about the same goal with this course. My goal is to create on-line courses (or at least use digital tools) for education of medical students in clinical chemistry, and maybe also FDOL CPD courses for specialists in Sweden and internationally. When you write that you would like to be able to create open platform national on-line courses for doctors at vocational training in family medicine, do you really mean open (for all) or open for specialists in family medicine?

    1. Actually, as new as I am in this area, I just meant digital platform. I am not familiar with all concepts yet. I think maybe that closed digital learning platform would be the best for such courses.

  2. I absolutely agree with you, it takes time and experience to understand how to work in a learning community such as FDOL.

    It is not just about knowing how the tools work but learning how to act and use the different areas for communication and collaboration of the network. I feel that the essential elements that was presented in the quit massive ”What is digital literacy, a Pragmatic investigation” by Belshaw – on page 206 where he starts with the Cultural element feels relevant to read when encountering a new context such as ours. He discusses the need to understand various digital contexts and how each environment has it´s different codes and ways of operating. For instance just compare how to manage a twitter chat (this is new for me!) and how we write on the google forum, or how we answer mail.

    I also liked the article of Coomey with the paradigms because you get an overview of different learning environments which I feel can make discussions on what is learning online a bit more nuance.

    Thank you for sharing Anna!!!

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