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Is Technology the Hard Part?

Even though the focus of this blog is learning about technology, learning technology, and learning how to use technology (particularly in education settings), I wanted to tell you about how using technology is the easy part as I mentioned earlier (see my earlier blog post, More of My Next Steps).

I started this blog as I was in a module called Is One Life Enough (IOLE). [NOTE: my first blog posts were assignments from the IOLE module, and you can scroll back to see all of them if you like.] Then it develops that I am now co-teaching this module – with John O’Connor and Claudia Igbrude. We mashed together the module from Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) with a colloquium from the Honors College of The University of Akron (UA) to provide an international educational experience for our students WITHOUT the expense of travel.

How Does That Work?

Good question. The three of us had to develop a process to stay coordinated and adjust because of time differences, institution requirements and schedules, deviations in what was happening in the class, and other surprises.

John and Claudia already had a blog and Wiki established for the module, so it was “simply” a matter of adding me into the mix. Learning how to work in a wiki is not that difficult (like creating a blog, like learning to tweet, like learning to manipulate images, like learning to edit video, like learning [add your technology here]).  The mechanics, in other words, is “easy.”  The content and the usefulness – now THAT’S the hard part.

Do you remember “group projects” in school (or in work, for that matter, too)?  The difficulties involved in any group work is hard.  It does not matter how many times you had to do it, and it does not matter how well you know how to do it (through experience, education or training in group dynamics and processes).  Work is work. Decisions, idea creation, compromise, and collaboration are difficult.

But all that is not to say it is not enjoyable.

It is certainly worth it when you see your goal in sight and accomplish what you aimed for (or at least most of it because our goals, plans and dreams are perfect and the actual achievement is typically not).

So, this blog’s focus is on technology? Not really – and I don’t mean to disappoint you if you have followed it so far, nor mean to say I’ve tried to trick you.  The blog is on the use of technology, the effectiveness of technology to reach an educational or learning goal.  As I’ve said before, it is a tool. And though the focus is much about the tool, the point is what the tool can do for you. (I’ll leave tool talk to the tool manufacturers or hardware stores.)

I Want to Learn More About This

You can obtain the details of our case study or the whole book about E-Learning, E-Education and Online Training.

Igbrude, Claudia; O’Connor, John & Turner, Dudley. (2014). Inter-University International Collaboration for an Online Course: A Case Study. In Vincenti, Giovanni, Bucciero, Alberto, Vaz de Carvalho, Carlos (Eds.)E-Learning, E-Education, and Online Training. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering. Volume 138pp 159-166.