Learning Designs Challenge – Summary

The challenge was interesting for me from several perspectives.

First of all, it was a good exercise in course design. Thanks again to the team and my reviewers!

Another effect was a good insight into working with CourseSites from a learner’s perspective. This will be very helpful for the design of „Teaching for Tomorrow“ (#tea4tom) (s.a. tea4tom).

So during the challenge, I took some notes on the course which follow below. Some consider the learning designer or the LDC course itself others the work with CourseSites.

Positive Take-aways

Changing Perspective

•    Just putting yourself into the perspective of some else gives you new insights.
•    Getting over organisational blindness by critique of peers.
•    Getting to know other approaches in teaching and learning. Looking at the teaching preparation (design) of other people is a little bit like a look into their head.

Tool Learning Designer

•    Pie chart to show the balance between acquisition, inquiry, practice, discussion, collaboration and production in your learning activities.
•    Export to a very readable MS Word document.
•    The tool enforces a structured approach to the preparation of lessons/modules.


•    Doing the challenge in a week was a bit demanding – but considering procrastination probably the way to go.

Other People – Same Problems

•    It is always good to see that you are not the only human making mistakes… 😉

Problematic Points


•    An hour a day challenge? Since the hangout sessions were already half an hour to three-quarters of an hour, it was impossible to take part in one hour a day. Maybe the course design should have been sketched on learning designer… 😉


•    Curse or blessing? Information was spread through several channels (Coursesites, Twitter, padlet.com). Since pieces of information were on some channels and other pieces on others, it took time to find one’s way around. A concise but complete overview of all need-to-knows on the LMS would have been nice.

Live Video Session

•    The live video sessions were occasionally a technical challenge to the teaching team.
•    Since questions only came in through twitter and the forum, there was no real interaction with participants and hence no necessity for technical challenging live sessions. Recordings could have been better prepared and shorter.
•    The live sessions were not cut before being published as recordings. So some of them had ten minutes silence at the beginning due to delays in the beginning of the live sessions.


•    There were reports on Twitter of CourseSites going down – on just 270 participants. I cannot verify this so far.

Blogs in Coursesites

•    They are not intuitive (see question in Q&As of the course).
•    Can you configure whether you want updates to comments or not?!
•    With 35 and counting (3rd day) participants blogging, it is impossible to keep an overview. Needs splitting up in groups of 10 to 20 learners.
•    Facilitators concentrated on blogs with many entries in the live sessions although it was suggested to use your own blog and to post the URL in the CourseSite blog.

Peer Review in Learning Designer

•    When you decide on one design for a review, it is possible that someone else is already doing a review. There is no mechanism making sure a design is reviewed.
•    I received three reviews on my design (thanks!). But I had already revised my design and submitted the revision again after the first review. So to incorporate the feedback of the following reviewers is impossible, when you want to stay true to CC BY, because you cannot merge the designs. Only one reviewer will be named in the tool.

Tool Learning Designer

•    I experienced problems with the auto-save function when I paused too long and got logged out with my work not having been saved. Other participants reported similar problems in the forums.
•    Initially, every saving process created a new version of the design with the same name that did not get a time stamp or version number. Later this Problem was fixed.
•    An email about revisions/reuse of your designs would be helpful. Otherwise you need to go back to the tool all the time to check manually.
•    The possibility to contact other users would be helpful. I would like to thank my reviewers for the effort they put into helping me ahead.


•    Known (to Blackboard) problem of upload of open badges from Blackboard/CourseSite to Mozilla backpack.

Learning Designs Challenge – 5th and Last Day

The challenge is over. On one hand, my boss will be happy that I come back to my regular work with more hours. 😉 On the other hand, getting feedback on your work from people somewhere in the world  was a good push ahead and out of organisational blindness.

Thanks to Sina Wenger, itanagimenes und patricia for the effort and thought they spent in their reviews of my design!

And thanks to the team of the Learning Designs Challenge!

A more detailed review of my experience will follow the next days.

Learning Designs Challenge – 4th Day

Yesterday, I had almost finished a review of a design when a colleague came in. When I was ready to continue with the review, I had been logged-off automatically. Unfortunately, the auto-save function had not saved my work. So here I am, another task delayed by a day…

So far, the design I was reviewing, when this accident happened, seems not to have been reviewed. But the software does not allow to figure out whether a review is in process or not – or I just cannot see how this is shown.

But anyway, the idea of the whole challenge is great and I very much appreciate the work of the team who are facilitating the event. It is giving us, the participants, the opportunity to look into the work of others and to get the views of others on our work. Thanks!

Learning Designs Challenge – 3rd Day

Procrastination – How do you keep your learners from putting off tasks? That is a core question especially in distance learning.

The spirit is willing… so I have just uploaded my challenge to the platform which should have happened yesterday…

It is the outline of a workshop for educators, who want to get to know distance learning / e-learning. By immersing them in actual, freely available classes on the net, I try to put them in a learner’s perspective of distance learning to experience, analyse and discuss quality of on-line courses.

Now, I cannot wait to get comments by colleagues around the world – hopefully.

Learning Designs Challenge – 1st Day

First day (or rather morning)  of International Learning Design Challenge MOOC and I’m finding my way around the course in the LMS and the other resources.

Missing an overview of the course structure, learning outcomes and tasks (in the top navigation level), it’s necessary to do quite a few clicks to get an idea of the organisation of the course.

So to the first task: Tell us what is your personal challenge? With the overall ambition of the course to create innovative learning designs, my challenge is if I can meet this hight expectation with what I do. Well, let’s wait and see…

International Learning Designs Challenge (Update)

Der MOOC mit dem Titel „International Learning Design Challenge“ hat zum Ziel in internationaler Kollaboration innerhalb von fünf Tagen 100 Lerndesigns zu entwickeln.

Das Hauptwerkzeug dazu ist eine Software namens Learning Designer, die in diesem Video näher erläutert wird.

Update: Anscheinend sind alle in der Software (Version 0.92.0120) angelegten Designs auch für alle anderen Nutzer sichtbar und verwendbar (Menüpunkt Browser). Zum Glück sind schnell zusammengeklickte Tests auch genauso schnell löschbar…

Start ist der 10.2.2014.

Anmeldung unter: http://www.coursesites.com/s/_LDC

Jeweils eine Stunde Zeit an fünf Tagen – diese Zeit sollte sich finden lassen!