Monthly Archives: October 2014

Desire2Learn – (First ID Experience)

Many moons ago, I took a few courses using the Desire2Learn platform. It was in the early days of e-Learning and I am fairly certain those experiences gave me insight into what was needed to make online courses and served to fuel my later wish to pursue a degree in Instructional Design.

Recently, I was able to play around…yes, I said PLAY (I love these types of tools) with D2L from an Instructor and a Designer perspective. I was given one unit in a course on Shakespeare and a links to the college’s CSS formatting and asked to design a module for it on D2L. Unfortunately I only had one week within which to do this…so I had to get to work quickly.

First, I had to teach myself how to work within D2L from each perspective of student, instructor, and designer. Now and then I had to reign in my desire to play around too much, but it was interesting to learn about the various components. After I had worked with individual parts of the platform, I found there was an Instruction Design wizard that pretty much guides you through the entire design process…so I did that too, just to compare the experience.

Second, I analyzed the content given to me. This is where I put on my “instructor hat” and wrote down questions I would ask the actual instructor if the opportunity arose. I also looked at it from the student perspective and envisioned how this unit would look on a course syllabus.

Lastly, I got to work on the design. I played around with the overall look of the module and found that some of the parts I wanted to change were locked down by the college. Once I got over that, I used what I had learned from looking over the unit materials and decided what interactive components and accessibility needs were present and how I would design those around the main content. I played around with some of the images given to me in Photoshop and added a couple of them to the module. I then decided on InDesign to make an interactive flowchart. Even though it would not show up on mobile devices, in the given timeframe I made the call to go ahead with it. I found it fairly easy to upload the files I need to make that all work and learned a few shortcuts along the way.Under normal circumstances, I would have chosen another interactive element that everyone accessing it on whatever chosen devices could use.

Overall, I enjoyed working with D2L and hope to get a chance to learn more about it in the future.

Side notes

On the Blogging101 course I wrote about on the 18th of Sept:

I have really enjoyed the daily prompts and things to try in WordPress. Through those, I have learned a lot more about the platform than I knew before…and have added a few new elements as a result. I am missing out on part of that experience, however. There is a community part of the course that I never was added to called The Commons…even though I signed up before the course started and requested access to this community (three or four times), it never happened. Sad. I still got thru most of the prompts, and as I mentioned, got a lot out of those alone. If it comes up again, I may try to get the full experience, but the dedicated learner that I am cannot help but feel a little like I did not finish my homework.

Other blogs:

One of the assignments was to comment and then link to other blogs in the Blogging 101 realm. I searched and searched for ET or D related 101 blogs but came up short. Nonetheless, here are a few interesting blogs on other topics that I commented on:

Writer on the Rocks

Habit Your Day

Urban Free Spiriting

Flirting w/ eLearning

Blogging about instructional design, eLearning, graphic design and more.

Minnesota Online Quality Initiative

Promoting Quality Course Design Through Statewide Collaboration

Let's Talk Education, Technology, and Design

A simultaneous perspective from an educator and a technical viewpoint

Experiencing E-Learning

Building Engaging Learning Experiences through Instructional Design and E-Learning

Habit Your Day

transformed perspective through intentional changes

Urban Freespirit

Cultivating body, mind & spirit in a modern, stylish world

Part Timer

A pasty chef's adventures in web development

The Daily Post

The Art and Craft of Blogging

Granted, and...

thoughts on education by Grant Wiggins

Where technology has an honest chance

ease of use, isn't so easy...

Alex's Ayurveda & Life Blog

Grassroots Ayurveda in the 21st Century

9to5Mac

Apple News & Mac Rumors Breaking All Day