One of the main assignments we have left before the end of the semester is to develop a digital learning resource using Adobe Flash and Dreamweaver. I have chosen to create a resource that introduces learners to bumblebees. The goal of this resource is to teach learners how to identify the 12 species that occur in Ireland.
It is important that this resource contain interesting interactive elements, such as buttons that the learner has to click on, or items that they have to drag and drop. Interactive learning materials such as these highlight one of the strongest features of e-learning, which makes it a far more stimulating resource than one which contains just multimedia. Interactivity helps to enrich learning and maintains the learner’s interest. However, designing these materials is another matter entirely.
Continue reading “Learning communities”
This week our team received our grade for the instructional document that we created together. All in all, I think we did surprisingly well. There were a number of errors in the document, which some of us probably should have noticed. But we also did many things quite well.
Overall, I enjoyed working in a virtual team. I enjoyed the discussion amongst people and being able to bounce ideas off other team members. It was great knowing that there were people who you could turn to if you were having problems or difficulties – I think that everyone in our group was considerate in that respect.
Continue reading “Final thoughts on the collaboration project”
Last week I conducted an interview with a professional technical communicator for an assignment in the module Workplace Issues in Professional and Technical Communication. The goal of the interview was to learn as much about the interviewee and their work as a technical writer. Bizarrely, I have been interviewed recently myself, using a new app called ZCast which allows users to create a live podcast using their phone. But I had never played the role of the interviewer before, and so I was feeling more than a little apprehensive about the whole situation.
Interviewing is an important skill for technical writers, as they often have to gather information from subject matter experts about the product for which they are producing documentation. In fact, as this article points out, content creators (and technical writers) should probably think like journalists in many respects.
Continue reading “Interview techniques”
As a distance student, I happily appreciate the flexibility that it offers. It allows me to attend a university outside of my hometown, as well as enabling me to combine study with my other responsibilities.
However, it is not without disadvantages, one of which is the lack of face-to-face interaction with instructors and classmates. Fortunately, this is a blended learning course, and last weekend I had the opportunity to attend a workshop in Limerick where I got to meet some of the other distance education students.
Continue reading “From a distance…!”
This week marked the final week for our team to complete our document for the virtual team collaboration assignment. Apart from a couple of queries about the translation, all had been pretty quiet in our Facebook group for a while now.
I know that on my part, I was completely overrun with other assignments in the past few weeks: the XML document, the storyboard for digital learning resource, the proposal for the dissertation project, and organising an interview with a professional technical communicator. In fact, I became so preoccupied with these other assignments and deadlines that I began to see this collaboration project as more and more of a nuisance, especially since it is worth so little in comparison to all the others. I could only assume that everyone else in the team had similar problems with coursework and encroaching deadlines.
Continue reading “Almost there! The final stage of virtual team assignment”