mercredi 19 juin 2013

Towards pMOOC

Portfolio MOOC for competencies based learning

By combining MOOC and digital portfolio based on competencies repository, the portfolio MOOC or pMOOC is the technological foundation upon which to build competency-based learning using MOOC [Coulombe 2013]. More specifically, we are talking about portfolios that put « competencies assessment » at the heart of the learning process [PAQUETTE 2002a], [RAYNAULD et al. 2011], [RAYNAULD et al. 2012].

Digital portfolios

In education, digital portfolios (or eportfolios) are already used for student projects in order to provide documents and artifacts often accompanied by a description of the steps of the project. Digital portfolios can be used for many purposes: for personal resume, for job seach, for learning by providing tools for formative and summative evaluations and self-reflection, for the assessment of competencies and even the certification by demonstrating the satisfaction of standards. The digital portfolios can be used for many purposes: to present yourself (kind of digital resume), for job search, to improve learning by providing tools for formative and summative evaluations and also self-reflection, for the assessment of competencies and even to certify competencies by demonstrating the satisfaction of standards.

The pMOOC is an hybrid!

The pMOOC is an hybrid in the sense that it is part of the normal evolution of the xMOOC platforms based on knowledge transfer (with the "x" in reference to the EdX initiative) whose teaching is centered on the teacher but borrowing elements to cMOOC (c for « connectivism ») where the teaching is more focused on the generation and sharing of knowledge by the participants according to the nomenclature proposed by Stephen Downes and published on the blog of George Siemens [SIEMENS 2012]. However, we are well aware of the uncertainty associated with these definitions.

The purpose of a portfolio-MOOC is to expand from « à la carte » individual courses to the broader approach of studies program, involving multiple courses, which aims a complete training based on competencies acquisition.

In terms of content, the pMOOC is based on structured content like xMOOC but the syllabus and the assessments are based entirely on a competencies repository [RAYNAULD 2011].

Available at any time on computer or mobile platform, the pMOOCs appear to be the ideal support for competency-based learning, for their assessment, then monitor learning progress, the achievement of competencies and in order to set the criterias of the competencies certification [GERBÉ & al. 2012].

Assessments are everywhere in pMOOC

Current MOOCs are well adapted to students who are mostly digital natives but at the same time are inadequate in the context of organized and efficient learning, especially in a competency-based approach.

Given the massive nature of MOOCs, the only types of evaluation that can be performed « automatically » are rather superficial. Basically, four types of evaluation are proposed. 1) Short multiple-choice questions are directly embedded in each educational videoclips which should be answered immediately to ensure that students have well followed and have paid sufficient attention to educational content according to a pedagogy called « mastery learning » [Wikipédia 2013]. 2) Assessments at the end of each module in the form of more elaborate questionnaires. 3) Programming exercises that can be subjected to automatic evaluation. 4) Finally homeworks or short essays to be peer reviewed. In the peer review, one can introduce a reputation score to identify the best evaluators and encourage ethical behavior [JOSANG et al. 2007].

But precisely, competency-based digital portfolios are characterized by a wealth of assessment tools involving multiple agents: automatic assessments, self-assessments, peer assessments and assesment scenarios with tutors, teachers, internship responsibles, laboratory instructors, practical work instructors which may also involve committees and juries [RAYNAULD et al. 2012].

The pMOOC viewed as an integrator element

In many situations MOOCs can be used for so-called « flipped classrooms » where students go online to consult educational contents and do exercises before going to class. Thus, the regular class becomes the place where to discuss difficulties, go deeper into certain subjects, achieve richer and interactive learning activities such as workshops or laboratories. [HOPKINS 2012].

This is a great opportunity to add value for students in attendance (with discussions, Q/R sessions, examples, case studies, role plays, etc.) who will pay a premium for these privileges (of course!). One thinks of the contributions of simulations and serious games that mobilize other forms of learning, but do not replace practical experience.

We also saw that many disciplines taught at the university require practice with simulations, case studies, internships and laboratories.

Here again, a portfolio-MOOC is particularly well suited because it plays the role of an integrator element and ensures the monitoring and coordination of the various learning activities and assessments by computer and teaching staff.

Competencies repository, the core element of pMOOCs

Competency-based learning requires that lessons be broken down into competencies of different levels that can be assessed using well defined operational observables [TARDIF 2006]. All these modeled and computable informations are contained in a digital competencies repository. The competencies repository is therefore the core element of portfolio-MOOC.

The use of a competencies repository allows the design of modular courses where students can follow different learning paths depending on their needs and interests. Competencies can then be combined according to different learning scenarios depending of students and their learning objectives.

Support to the learning processes

Another key element of pMOOC is their support to learning. While in conventional MOOCs like xMOOCs the user's support is mainly based on the use of discussion forums, then individual blogs and wikis in the case of cMOOC, for their part the pMOOCs are characterized by a multi-stakeholders approach and structured pedagogical scenarios with integration of social networks to support users [FILIPPI et al. 2012].

Conclusion and future

The MOOCs will evoluate in many directions. The use of MOOCs in combination with digital portfolios for competency-based learning is an important and predictable evolution.

Le billet original en français

[COULOMBE 2013] Coulombe C., Vers les CLOM-p - Les CLOM portfolios pour l'agrément des compétences, Journée MATI Montréal 2013, L’innovation dans les modèles, méthodes et outils pour l’apprentissage et le développement des compétences, Montréal, 1er mai 2013. Diapos de la présentation - consulté en 2013 Vidéo de la présentation - consulté en 2013
[RAYNAULD et al. 2012] Raynauld, J., Martel, C., Gerbé, O. et Coulombe, C. Les portfolios d'évaluation : un dispositif intégré reposant sur l'évaluation des compétences dans le cadre de situations pédagogiques variées, Actes du Colloque de l'Association internationale de pédagogie universitaire, 14 au 18 mai 2012, Trois-Rivières, Québec, p.634-641.
[SIEMENS 2012] Siemens, G., What Is the Theory That Underpins Our Moocs?, Blogue. Elearnspace, 3 juin 2012. - consulté en 2013
[RAYNAULD 2011] Raynauld, J., Référentiels de compétences : des besoins exprimés à la mise en oeuvre, GTN - Québec: journée d'étude sur le développement et la diffusion des ressources numériques d'apprentissage, 29 novembre 2011 , Montréal, Québec.
[GERBÉ & al. 2012] Gerbé, O., Coulombe, C. et Raynauld, J. Zone Cours Mobile : toutes les informations à caractère pédagogique pour les apprenants nomades, 2ème journée de MATI Montréal dans le cadre du colloque scientifique international sur les TIC en éducation, 3 au 4 mai 2012, Montréal, Québec.
[Wikipédia 2013] Wikipédia, Mastery learning. In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia 24 février 2013, - consulté en 2013
[JOSANG et al 2007] Josang A., Ismail R., Boyd C., A Survey of Trust and Reputation Systems for Online Service Provision, Decision Support Systems, vol. 43, no 2, Elsevier, mars 2007, p. 618-644.
[HOPKINS 2012] Hopkins, C, Future U: Fear and Loathing in Academia. Ars Technica, June 10, 2012. - consulté en 2013
[FILIPPI et al. 2012] Filippi, L., Cantaroglou, F., Gerbé, O. et Raynauld, J. Du portefeuille de formation au portfolio de compétences : valoriser les communautés professionnelles pour favoriser l'accès à l'emploi, Actes du colloque 508 sur les systèmes pédagogiques intégrés, ACFAS 2012, 7 mai 2012 Montréal, Québec.
[RAYNAULD et al. 2011] Raynauld, J., Martel, C., Gerbé, O. et Coulombe, C. « Assessment Portfolios: An Integrated Model-Based Approach Supporting The Needs And Scenarios Across Users, ePic 2011 », Proceedings of the ePIC2011 ePortfolio & Identity Conference, 11 au 13 juillet 2011, London, England, p.162-167.