ZML Didaktik / Innovative Learning Scenarios

Archive for the ‘Begriff’ Category

I strongly believe that we learn by doing something: discussing, drawing, scribbling, modeling, reflecting and writing it down (or recording it). Therefore in my (training) classes people have to do something all the time. That’s also the basis of the online cos teachers‘ training I developed a month ago and which is running at the moment. Content Strategy (COS)  is a university program for students who work and study. A lot of the learning process is happening online and the teachers want to improve their asynchronous and synchronous teaching performance.

In my training approach my colleagues are now my ´students´. I prepare the online room as I always do with my students – in Slack and based on etivities (online tasks). The most important part of the training will be the project work where my colleagues have the opportunity for online work shadowing – observing their teaching scenarios, respectively.

Training weeks 1 & 2

The objective of week 1 is to build the group. There are six national and international participants in the group.  As teachers in the cos program they know each other but nevertheless they learned something new about each other. They struggled a lot with time management on the one hand and with getting orientation at the other hand. One of the training participants dropped out.

In the middle of the second week I moderated a synchronous meeting on ZOOM to show how I activate my students during an online conference. After a short introduction I told the two participants to do some research and come back to the online meeting and present what they have found. The second part of the video conference was open for discussion about the training weeks so far and about the upcoming project work. The feedback of the persons involved into the online meeting was positive whereas one of the participants who had to watch the video afterwards and to do a different task didn’t like it that much.

It’s not easy to get involved into a topic by watching the recording instead of attending the online meeting. Our cos students have up to 3 online meetings a week and many of them have to watch the video afterwards. As I hate to watch videos and it’s not my media to learn at all I would die! As an enthusiastic MOOC learner I watch videos from time to time. They work for me when I take notes at the same time, do some research, transfer it to my experience.

Also the asynchronous exchange is not that easy going in the teacher training, one of the participants had the feeling that it is a ´forced´activity.


I like Slack as communication platform a lot but in the case of an an online training it doesn’t support a lot of structure. And my nice overview and tasks files were totally ignored 🙂 These were the channels I prepared for the training.

Work shadowing – the observation project

In the weeks to come my colleagues in the training course have to collaborate in a project. At the moment they are preparing and scheduling their collaboration. The project work is unmoderated which means that they are responsible for their learning process and I’m not available for support and information.

According to my training design the participants should observe an online teaching session from each other (work shadowing). The session can be synchronous or asynchronous. Of course I prepared explanations what they have to do in the Slack channels – but based on my experience with this course so far I also created a comic page to visualize the process.

The observation minutes should help them to organize their thoughts during the observation, to create a document which can be discussed and share. I believe it will be helpful that I’m not moderating this phase. The participants have to figure it out and will do it according to their needs and their constraints.

Observation minutes

The training participants should reflect what you saw, heard, thought, felt with respect to:

  • The start of the synchronous session / the asynchronous period
  • The type of work and interaction – what type of interaction takes place? Does it change? 
  • The structure of the session/period of time –  is there a structure? Do I understand it? Is there a kind of dramaturgy? Is the purpose visible at the beginning, in the middle? 
  • What about the tasks? Are they easy to understand? Do the tasks initiate different types of learning – e.g. individual work, pair work, group work
  • Media: what media are used? Is there a mix?
  • Unexpected situations, disturbance: did you observe such a situation? How did the teacher react?
  • The end: How did the session end, the period of asynchronous tasks end?
  • Specialty: did you observe something which didn’t fit into the questions above?

Learning journal

Furthermore with respect to their interaction with their students I ask my colleagues to write weekly contributions to their individual learning journal. They can also record their voice or a video. The documented activities should be clustered according to:

  • What did catch my eye / what did I see, observe?
  • How did I react, what did I do?
  • What did I think?

Finish line

In about a month I will become active as convener/moderator in the training again. I will read the documentation of the projects, the learning journals and will collect material – which we will use in the final workshop at the end of January/beginning of February. Some of the participants will attend the workshop in person, others online.

I’m really curios what will happen in the cos teachers training in the next weeks.


As university teacher and head of an e-learning center I’m wondering how my job will change during the next years. Already now students are different, many of them know less maths and spelling rules and speak English fluently. In courses of university teaching colleagues complain that students are not engaged anymore. Instead of immersing themselves in university topics many of them aim at finishing their degree as quickly and easily as possible.

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Today I carried out a workshop in the school “Rainergymnasium” in Vienna, with 68 school students between 14-15 years and from three different classes. Their teacher Vera Kadlec invited me to support the students to reflect their experiences in an IMST project with special regard to the subject informatics.


The workshop was planned for two school hours. I started with a short introduction to emergent learning and the footprints of emergence. Then each student drew his or her individual footprint using a sheet with further information; the sheet contains a question for each factor and a picture which visualizes the factor.


As the weather was beautiful most of the groups worked in the open. Vera, her colleague Jochen Reichert and I observed the students drawing their footprints and helped them if necessary. During the process of drawing the footprints the students asked a few questions about specific factors. One student felt that the questions in the sheet need a “yes” or “no” contrary to the footprint template where there is a continuum for each factor.

After the first school hour many students had finished their drawings. In the second hour I started to discuss the footprints with groups of students whereas Vera and Jochen supported the others to finish their footprints as well.


Some observations of the footprints

Cluster Open/structure:

  • A student put the factor risk in the sharp emergent zone. She said that despite of learning a lot for the exam there are questions she cannot answer. Therefore she feels a lot of risk to fail.
  • Another student loved the possibility to learn in other places than in school (lim).
  • Many of them positioned the ambiguity factor in the sharp emergent zone or at the edge of chaos (amb). In the analysis of the footprints Vera will check if this result is related to the specific school class.
  • One student created a footprint with rather high factors of disruption and self-correction. He told me that in class he often cannot finish his work (high disruption factor) and he hates it. Then he has to solve the problem by himself after class (high self-correction) and he likes it. This was an interesting learning experience for the group, that sometimes we like to be challenged and sometimes not.
  • Many students spoke in a positive manner about different learning paths.


Cluster Interactive Environment

  • Many students gave the factor experiential a high value. With respect to this factor they reflected mostly their experience in the subject chemistry.

Cluster Agency

  • Many students were stressed because they often had to organize themselves and be autonomous. Some of them didn’t like this at all and put the factor self-orgainsation and autonomy into chaos.
  • In the discussions I was not sure if the students understood the factor identity. They see very clear and fixed roles of being students or teachers (alas a factor in the prescribed zone) whereas some of them put the factor identity into the (sharp) emergent zone.


Cluster: Presence / Writing

  • We discussed the factor solitude and contemplation (S&C) which was sometimes in the sharp emergent zone. The students said that if they do not succeed in finishing their work in class the professor allows them to finish it at home. But they find it hard and difficult to work alone at home.

After the workshop Vera and I discussed our impressions of the interaction with the students.


Altogether the students said that they are happy to learn within a structured learning environment and that they didn’t want more freedom in learning. Furthermore they stated that during the first semester the design of their learning space was more open and more closed in the second semester.

With respect to the workshop 68 school students were too much to deal with. Next time we will do a workshop with every class again.

Today my colleague Erika and I supported students of physiotherapy to draw their first footprint after completing their first placement. It’s fun to watch them struggling with the concept behind the footprints. 

Based on the description of the footprint terminology of Jenny Mackness and Roy Williams we translated the questions for the factors into German and adapted them for school and university students. We tried to use a simple language but keep hold of the complexity. That was no easy task at all! Furthermore we are using many of the pictures of Roy’s mapping sheet in the Footprint WIKI. But I’m not sure if they are free to use. Therefore I don’t share digital versions of our handouts. 

The students draw the footprints per hand using the German version of this template.


It’s nice when the students get new insights into their learning process at the placement.

I’m looking forward to discuss the footprints of emergence with you and Jenny Mackness at Lancaster during the 10. Networked Learning conference.

To Jenny’s post about our presentation

In knapp zwei Wochen, am Dienstag, dem 10. Mai werden Jenny Mackness und ich auf der 10. Networked Learning Konferenz über den Einsatz der Footprints of Emergence erzählen.


Die Networked Learning Konferenz in Lancaster ist eine bedeutende E-Learning Tagung mit hohem theoretischem Anspruch, was mich als Praktikerin etwas unter Druck setzt. Sie findet alle zwei Jahre statt. Im Jahr 2000 war ich bereits einmal dort und sprach über Networked Learning in Applied Science Education. Diesmal steht die Tagung unter dem Motto Looking back – moving forward, gar nicht so unterschiedlich von der Thematik unseres heurigen 15. E-Learning Tages im September, bei dem wir die letzten 15 Jahre kritisch reflektieren.

Jenny Mackness  lernte ich 2011 online kennen und schätzen. Wie ich liebt sie im Netz ihren Blog und twitter – oder zumindest sind das die Medien, durch die wir hauptsächlich in Kontakt sind. Der Austausch mit Jenny beflügelt meine emergent learning Prozesse – immer wieder regt sie mich zu neuen schrägen Aktivitäten an (etwa gerade eben verlockt mich ihre Beschreibung, wie sie Comics zeichnete) oder wir treffen uns in denselben Online-Lernräumen.

2014 hielt sie gemeinsam mit Roy Williams die Keynote an unserem 13. E-Learning Tag, in der die beiden über ihre Erfindung der Footprints of Emergence sprachen. Damals – in Graz – traf ich sie zum ersten Mal persönlich und nächste Woche fliege ich nach Lancaster zu unserem zweiten persönlichen Treffen. Ich freue mich schon sehr auf unseren Austausch und gemeinsame Spaziergänge.

In unserer Präsentation auf der Konferenz (siehe Abstract) werden wir von der Verwendung der Footprints of Emergence im Rahmen des Competences  for Global Collaboration MOOC erzählen- siehe Jenny’s Blogpost über unser Vorhaben. Die Visualisierung des MOOC-Designs als Footprint of Emergence war überaus nützlich für die Diskussion im Projektteam, das advanced assignment in Woche 6 sollte die Lernenden dazu verführen mit einem Footprint den eigenen Lernprozess im MOOC zu reflektieren. 49 TeilnehmerInnen beschäftigten sich mit der Methode und erstellten einen Footprint.

Ich bin schon neugierig auf die Konferenz, auf networked learning 2016 und freue mich auf einen spannenden Austausch.