In the spirit of open learning and MOOCs, with all their emphasis on openness, collaboration, even transparency, it seems natural enough to extend that thought of openness all the way through to course design. Hence, this post and this call for collaboration. Join us for an exercise in open course design.

The Open Course: MobiMOOC

MobiMOOC is an open course on mobile learning that ran in 2011 for six weeks and will run in 2012 (September 8-29) for three weeks. It was created and executed by Inge de Waard, who works and writes extensively on mobile learning. Inge had different facilitators for each of the six weeks representing various fields of expertise. The course itself was a hit (at least we thought so), with over 500 participants, significant discussion and activity, and quite a bit of research following the course.

Several of the participants joined with Inge to conduct research based on the MobiMOOC experience and this has subsequently been published. For more background on MobiMOOC, see the presentation the team gave at mLearn 2011 in Beijing.

[slideshare id=9797827&doc=mobimooc-mlearn-final-111020122244-phpapp01]

I have been asked to facilitate (or at least co-facilitate) the third week of the course focused on mobile technology and ICT4D. Inge and I discussed the possibility of opening up an open course even further and so we come to everyone interested in mobile learning with a call for participation.

The Participation

We are interested in open collaboration not just for the actual open learning but also for the design of that learning. Open design leading to open learning. Essentially this open design is participatory design, a design approach that attempts to engage all stakeholders in the design process in order to ensure the relevancy of whatever is produced. Often, but not always, this design is geared towards tangible deliverables such as software, learning environments, etc. But what if the learning is the deliverable? What if the pattern language we are attempting to generate is the structure of the course itself?

So we have a two-fold emergence of openness:

  • the course itself
  • the design of the course itself

Both represent significant learning opportunities for all participants. Both represent an interesting model to explore pedagogically. Both represent, at least in MobiMOOC, to mix it up with some very passionate and capable people. Why not get involved?

What To Do

If you are interested in crafting, collaborating, and articulating week’s worth of activities for the next MobiMOOC, then be sure to visit the Google Doc to get started. We encourage you to join, we welcome you to join, we would love to see you there. To begin, simply click the link below.

Open Design Space for MobiMOOC Week 3: ICT4D


By Michael Gallagher

My name is Michael Sean Gallagher. I am a Lecturer in Digital Education at the Centre for Research in Digital Education at the University of Edinburgh. I am Co-Founder and Director of Panoply Digital, a consultancy dedicated to ICT and mobile for development (M4D); we have worked with USAID, GSMA, UN Habitat, Cambridge University and more on education and development projects. I was a researcher on the Near Futures Teaching project, a project that explores how teaching at The University of Edinburgh unfold over the coming decades, as technology, social trends, patterns of mobility, new methods and new media continue to shift what it means to be at university. Previously, I was the Research Associate on the NERC, ESRC, and AHRC Global Challenges Research Fund sponsored GCRF Research for Emergency Aftershock Forecasting (REAR) project. I was an Assistant Professor at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (한국외국어대학교) in Seoul, Korea. I have also completed a doctorate at University College London (formerly the independent Institute of Education, University of London) on mobile learning in the humanities in Korea.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.