What does the “open” in “Open Online Participatory Seminar” mean? When people think of open and courses, they often think of the very popular “MOOC,” meaning Massive Open Online Course. But we wondered quite a bit about what being open really meant. The Wikipedia definition of MOOC states that open means,
“unlimited participation and open access via the web”
Most of the time, this means that course resources are freely available to anyone and that participants can join and leave the course at any time, for any reason. Open remains pretty simple. However, in its apparent simplicity, we felt it left out some important ways we should think about openness.
Welcome to the Multicultural Inclusive Learning and Teaching OOPS! (Open Online Participatory Seminar – see our “What is a MILT OOPS?” video to learn more). Whether you’re joining us for course credit, for badges, or to see what’s going on, this course is open to your learning and participation. We want to take a moment here to elaborate on ways that teachers interested in multicultural inclusive learning and teaching might participate in seminar discussions as well as share seminar-related writing and resources they post to personal blogs, share via Twitter, or post to other social media sites.
The Seminar Moodle Site: If you’re registered for the seminar (which you can still do through February 1st at http://z.umn.edu/miltoopsregister), you can participate on our seminar discussion forums on the Moodle site. While some open courses allow users to register at any time, we’re trying to create a different sort of “open” in our class, the sort that comes through building of trust, relationships, ideas, and an atmosphere of “safety to take risks” over a period of time. So, while all of the resources that support the seminar (readings and videos, for example) will be made available on Learning4All.net, course discussions and participant work will be shared within the Moodle community of participants registered for the seminar. In this, we encourage participants to choose to share their work beyond the Moodle space, determining when and where to post their work publicly, and we can share those links here, via Learning4All.net.
Learning4All.net: We’ve set up this blog, in part, to serve as a point of convergence for all of our open and public facing resources and conversations. Content produced for the course, including videos, essays, assignments and other seminar materials we create, as well as Collaborative Bibliographies, will all be made available here. We’ll also publish week-by-week summaries of course activities. We’ll include in this conversations linked to our Twitter and Facebook hashtag, #learning4all. We’ll also (re-)publish the blogs and other writing of participants who write about the course. You can follow these posts at http://learning4all.net or snag our RSS feed through a feed reader like Feedly.