This blog post covers two online sessions: final EduSci-session and first online session for VOC Themes 11-15.
EduSci Part 5
The last EduSci-session was mainly about two group debates about computer-supported collaborative learning and measuring learning on vocational education level. Unfortunately I missed the very beginning of the debate, but it seemed that Eeva handled the debated from her part being against Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning and she was well prepared with slideshows and great comments. Although she didn’t have teammates to back her up, still she had collected enough evidence to justify her point of view. The opposing part also did their best to give their opinions for CSCL, and they also had slides with their speech (if I remember it correctly).
The CSCL seems to be familiar subject to all of us EduLAB-students, as we’ve been using that methodology with all of our collaborative studies. The only time when we didn’t use CSCL was in the very beginning of our studies, with the kick-off days. But after that, all of our study sessions as well as organizing our group work has been carried out by using computers and online tools.
The second EduSci-debate was about whether “all learning at the vocational education level can and should have a measurable outcome” or not. I was in a same team with Charles debating for the measurable outcome, and Elina and Emmy was debating against us. On the contrary with the first debate, we didn’t have a slideshow backing up our side of the debate, but when we thought about the topic from the Vocational Education viewpoint, it was pretty obvious that for assessing someone’s vocational competence, it has and should be measured somehow. The topic itself didn’t say that is the “measurable outcome” e.g. time, or points, or a piece of work, or whatsoever but for my understanding it’s not possible to assess someone’s competence without something to measure or assess. The counter-team asked that is it possible to assess someone’s creativity. I think for the sake of debate and later reflecting with the topic the creativity probably can’t be assessed but it should be measured e.g. in terms of pass/fail -scale. So in a way, if someone participates to a hypothetical course of “creativity”, the outcome of the course can be measured by a portfolio of assignments, or time used for enhancing his/her creativity.
But nonetheless, the topics created good discussion and also were “light” enough for contemplating and reasoning with a common sense. Although as debates went forward the discussion went slightly off-topic but usually that’s when the most important discussion begins. Great debates and entertaining session!
The first session of VOC Themes 11-15 was mostly about our smaller group’s topics and releasing our lesson plans. Our team’s topic was about Vocational Special Needs Education and our lesson was planned to be done using slightly modified learning jigsaw -method, hence going deeper into the “meta-level”, as with this one-credit lesson we (me, Charles and Maria) are the teachers of the lesson, and we distributed the topic into four sub-topics and let them teach the sub-topic to us by using whatever method they feel it should be taught. That actually went pretty well, but that will be covered with next blog posting. The VOC-topics as per each of the groups were:
VOC Theme 11: Global and Multicultural Activities
– How to create suitable conditions for learning with a multicultural student group?
– What are the ways that a vocational school participates in international activities?
VOC Theme 12: Entrepreneurship Education
– What are the teaching and assessment methods that will enhance development of the student’s intrapreneurship?
– How to teach entrepreneurship and its goals in the best and most effective manner in vocational education?
VOC Theme 13: Interaction with the Working Community
– What are working-life oriented learning environments?
– How is working-life oriented learning guided?
VOC Theme 14: Sustainable development
– What does the term ”sustainable development” mean?
– How to teach and guide sustainable development in schools?
VOC Theme 15: Special Needs Education
– How is the special needs education carried out specifically in the vocational education and upper secondary level?