Tuesday, 8 September 2009

First impressions of H808

This is a core activity (1.4) for H808 - to write a short reflection on my first impressions.

Initially I was excited - it seemed to be a really appropriate course for furthering my professional development in the direction I wanted to go. Secretly though I was worried that the course might be rather dry and I really wanted to get my teeth into one of the courses starting next spring. Once I got access to the website I was rather overwhelmed by the amount of content - how was I going to organise my thoughts on all these tools, resources, links, techniques, suggestions, tags, posts...? I was reassured by the posts in the course forums that I was not alone in these concerns, but I'd have been even happier if I'd had access to post there too!

When I got stuck into the course activities I was impressed by the clarity of thought and development of the exercises, with the core and optional supplementary activities, and with the links people were able to make into the discussion forums and wiki. And, happily, I couldn't have been more wrong with concerns that it might be a bit dry - how could a bunch of intelligent, passionate people discussing something which I find so interesting possibly be dry?!

I'm familiar with lots of the technologies the course has mentioned so far, but have barely or never used many more. I've already been inspired to try again with Twitter, and now I think I can see a use for it. When there's a community sharing interesting content it has a real use - when I was just seeing it as a place to answer the 'what are you doing now' question I didn't see the point, and couldn't see what that had to do with learning. I'm looking forward to many more similarly illuminating moments in the course and its associated activities.

So, I'm looking forward to exploring a whole range of technologies, to challenging my perspectives, to developing views on aspects I hadn't considered before. I'm still (like many I'm sure) concerned about fitting the course in around the rest of life and work, but at the moment I'm so inspired that I can't wait to get home from work to engage some more!

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