Design with Organization in Mind

Ch. 4 – “Design with organization in mind” by Smith

My first thought about this chapter was the format the author used to present the content. I follows the same format required to designing a course. Not only does this reinforce what is it looks like but the purpose of each component. Having these models scaffolds my understanding and the examples guide me as I develop my online course. The most critical part I have come to understand, and realize, is the importance of having everything written up, organized, planned and ready for full implementation prior to the first day of class. There is quite a bit of up front work to do, but it pays off during the course. This will allow for more self directed learners who are comfortable and confident in where resources are located.

Here is a list of essential tips that I need to remember while I develop the course.

  1. Customizing the learning outcomes to what you are actually teaching. This process reminds me of unpacking the standards in the classroom to make it more meaningful for the students.
  2. Just as my students in the classroom need examples of work to understand the expectations, having the examples, when appropriate so participants have a better chance of meeting the instructor’s expectations.
  3. The grading system helped, since I am familiar with elementary grading system.  Thinking about the projects I will have participants complete I need to determine what each assignment will be and chunk this.
  4. Prioritize portions in order to eliminate the suicide method of course development. Typically I will get through the easier portions of the assignment and wait to complete the hard sections. This is telling me to change that process and I can understand why. It will no longer feel so daunting once those are completed.

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