Monday, April 22, 2013

Online Learning is Adult Ed's Second Child

Any adult education program that is offering online learning is also starting a new business. (You'll need to look at it that way to get the most out of the video I've posted below.) With any new endeavor, there is uncertainty and some degree of trial and error. There are definitely different ways to meet the needs of different clients. There are conflicting mandates from the state, from the local municipality, from the teachers, and from the learners. Whatever you do, don't freak out. Here's some advice from one of my favorite big thinkers on innovation.  Gary Vaynerchuk and I are definitely on the same page as caring for our small children is teaching us how to relate to the world.
It was a question about whether online learning activities should be limited to work that fits into certain narrow definitions to qualify for NRS reportable time-on-task hours (which in turn, draws down federal dollars) that made this video resonate with me after clicking on Gary's link on Twitter. He uses the term 'micro-managing,' but if that feels like an admonishment, he's really talking about different approaches to facilitate development and growth, whether it's children, businesses, or online learning. They're all experimental.

Our interventions and attempts to control the process can be powerful, but they can also be an utter waste of energy. How much further will a lifelong learner go if they had a 'helicopter mom' hovering over their entire GED preparation experience? I know, different folks require different strokes, but you get my point. Now, if only Gary would solve my problem that stems from taking his advice to use the 10pm-2am hours to put in extra work trying to over-deliver for clients. Gary, on 4.5hrs of sleep, I'm useless helping my wife with the kids in the morning!

1 comment:

  1. Nice article, Jason.
    In SC programs require 12 hours of face-to-face time and a TABE pretest, plus scores in an upper range before students are allowed to be online students. Of course this is to met NRS requirements but can also be a roadblock that prevents some who could be successful from enrolling. Also, in my experience, some students who have lower scores can be successful if they are motivated. We use ITTS and if a student can negotiate the web well enough to log in, Level E work can be done online.

    PS- Could be just my connections but your right-sidebar (Twitter feed I think) is jumping around, jittery...


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