Friday, July 9, 2010

Self Discipline in Open and Distance Learning...

Self discipline is a term you constantly hear about when you are about to embark on difficulty and/or challenging ventures including weight loss, studying, exercises, projects etc. I will disclose here that I never paid much attention to what this "Self Discipline" really means until I was recently involved in a training exercise (as a trainer) through an online workshop.

I have trained, in many occasions, various groups of people from different backgrounds, religions and cultures. This has mainly been through face to face workshops.Few times have I had online training sessions. This was an attempt to teach a technical course online. So I set up the learning environment, prepared my lessons and invited my participants. We were all ready to roll.

We started off well, sendng a list of the things that we needed to have ready before we actually start and asking the participants to perform some pre-workshop tasks. This was a good test as we were able to identify those that are competent enough to do this.

We moved on with the course and by the time we had gotten to lesson 5 of 10, 35% of the participants had dropped off. I decided to do an investigation. I got the following interesting remarks:

1) "Too busy", I got caught up in other office related activities
2) "Too Technical to do online"
3) "This is a new thing to us that I am not used to"
4) "Will do it but I am lagging behind"
5 "Nothing"

Web2.0 - Its possible!

If they ever told you that it is not possible then they lied to you. Today, we are on our final day for the Web 2.0 Learning opportunity at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), Nairobi. A total of over 27 participants from various organisations participated. We have a combination of different professionals from different backgrounds and it has been great fun.

Check out this for a participants view of the workshop