P2PU Assessment Workshop

Philipp Schmidt of P2PU was attending the HASTAC P3 meeting last week. He’s hosting a meeting (P2PU Assessment Workshop) next week at Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Palo Alto. CA.  The meeting’s agenda is evolving in the wiki in the link above.  Theron DesRosier will be attending with me.

I have one key question about this meeting, regarding the assumptions and goals of the organizers: Are we trying to enable learning and learners or are we trying to build a university? (Theron and I are hoping for the former.)

Which makes me think of Terry Wassell interesting thought in response to a discussion in Dave Cormier’s blog post “An emerging model for open courses” :

@Scott Leslie. Thanks for your comment on the language of ‘courses’, or in my case ‘modules’. It has helped me realise that my approach to open education post my looming retirement may be trapped in the wrong mindset. I have been trying to think of how I can convert a module I teach at Leeds Uni that dies when I retire to an OE resource ‘in the wild’. I have been thinking about how it can be packaged as an OE module that a community of network of open learners can engage with and exploit/re-purpose according to individual and collective needs. I assumed that I and others would somehow organically become mentors (open tutors?) and flexibly help out as required. Perhaps I should be trying to develop links with existing communities engages in discussions and project around the discipline of my module and try and contribute there somehow. I think your comment illustrates the difficult transition in moving between open education as content (based on a formal education model) and open education as process that engages disparate audiences with varied agendas and objectives. [emphasis added]

Another perspective related to this discussion can be found in Stephen Downes’ 2007 post “Open Source Assessment.”   To Stephen’s thinking, I would add the thought that the assessment needs to be conducted in public (in contrast to a typical university process where student assessment is private between student and teacher). Think instead of the example of a master class in violin, where multiple learners are observing the dialog between teacher and student.

The important aspect of conducting the assessment in public, using public criteria, is that the community can learn from the experience as ‘legitimate peripheral participants.’

So, returning to Terry’s question, I’m wondering if Terry can create an open assessment of the learning in his modules. Terry might then post his content and the assessment where it can be accessed by the community.


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