What Exactly is an Online Course or Module?


And we will get going. I’ll start by sharing my screen. And then we’ll, we’ll move to some examples. So for anybody who doesn’t know me, I’m Amy Kohmetscher and I am with Ohio State Extension specifically with the learning and organizational development unit. Today we’ll be talking about what exactly an online course or module is we’ll be talking about definitions and what that means to us why we care. We’ll talk about some examples that We have From this realm of course first module. And what that means. And we’ll also after moving through examples will try to think of ways that this can be applied. In your own work and and we’ll go over a short discussion of how to actually apply it in your own work. So we’ll start with these PowerPoint slides and then I’ll move my screen share over to some online examples. So you can actually see what this looks like in practice. So first off, we’ll start with some definitions of course first module. Of course is often considered in an academic setting a semester long class, but in reality and extension, the term course is is kind of variable. It could be anything from A day long, offering or an eight hour time commitment to several weeks of meetings we have in the extension realm, anything that is, you know, a few hours to do nine months and people call it, of course. Module is Typically a smaller unit of content that can be consumed in a few hours or less. And again, That definition can vary. Sometimes an extension course with several modules might be, you know, a few hours for the whole course and each module might take 20 to 30 minutes or something like that. So, In reality, what’s important is that when you’re designing for your own needs for your own content. You think about how all these pieces might fit together to select what terms you would like to use and stay consistent and be very clear with your audience what that means in the context of your own offerings other terms. I’ve seen Have more game defied majors quest and trek and missions and things like that. And those are often suitable for You know, a non credit audience, maybe a younger audience for H or something like that. But I’ve certainly seen those used in adult learning situations as well. So that’s another Consideration to make that if if a fancier or more interesting and engaging term would would fit well with your programming. Maybe you think outside the box and you call things tracks and quests or whatever you want. And so it’s important that we don’t get too hung up on the terms because they do vary widely. So why does all this matter to us. My main premise in designing courses or modules is to be Aware of your audience. Be mindful and meet them where they are. Is your audience kids with a limited attention span is your audience adults with full time jobs and children, and a lot of other time commitments. You know what other considerations. Do you need to effectively engage with your audience. Do they have seasonal peak work hours where it’s really not a good time to be asking them to do things. To participate. Do they need content for any certifications that sort of thing. So be mindful of. All of those aspects when you are determining you know how large you want to go with your module or course and and how much content. You want to be in there and what you expect from your users who are participating. And the other reason this matters is modules and courses they take a lot of time and We want to be efficient. So by thinking about how all of your content that you’ve already created in your work. Can be repackaged and repurposed saves you a lot of time if you’ve made a beautiful handout or PowerPoint slide deck that you use it a face to face event, you know, maybe this can be repurposed for another audience or for another delivery mechanism. And this will make the most of your well thought out content and save you time. So this is a way to be efficient and and to really expand your content to new audiences expand your impact without really overloading your time by trying to generate a whole lot of new content. So I have some examples lined up for you today to kind of highlight what a module might look like. What a course might look like. And. Oops, I forgot one on here. I have one additional example as well. So we’ll have three examples today. The smallest being this planting decisions module, then we’ve got another one soil and site evaluation for onsite wastewater treatment. Whoa, and a typo in my slides. Good job. Amy anyway. And then we’ve got another one. Introduction to veterinary Entomology and I will explain the context of all of those as we go to look at them and then after we look at examples, especially since we have Such a nice small group today, we might be able to have some open discussion about your questions or concerns or, you know, ideas, you’re trying to work through in your own programming. I’m going to leave my slide deck. Can everybody still see my screen. And if somebody could just chime in with a Michael microphone, I do not. Oh, there’s the chat. Haha. Got it. Okay, we can see. Alright, so I’m going to go into The soil and site evaluation for onsite wastewater treatment. What’s interesting about this online course which they have called a segment. So the reason this one is interesting is we have Dr. Karen Mancl and Dr. Brian Slater have been teaching extension offerings related to wastewater treatment for a long time. And they’ve been wanting to move it online and they’ve been teaching it in the form of field days and other work. And this online offering as a supplement to the field days. So the way this is designed is a participant who need credit to maintain their status as sanitary in or whatever certificate, they hold in relation to wastewater treatment. They’re required a certain number of continuing education credits every year. The way this segment was designed. Was that a participant could complete all of these segments to earn their continuing education credits. For the year then if they wanted to earn an additional credit they could attend the in person Field Day. So this, this helps users show participants show up completely prepared to fully participate in the field day And for those who are really busy and maybe can’t make a synchronous event this still gives them the opportunity for meaningful engagement with high quality content to maintain their certification for the year. What’s interesting about this is They have Packaged a whole set of recorded lectures and assignments together into these smaller modules. And from the reports of the original participants, this does take about six hours to eight hours to complete. And the goal was to provide six continuing Asian continuing education credits. So we’ve we’ve met that Mark really well with this segment. And the interesting thing is Dr. Mancl and Dr. Slater have three segments. So this sets their audience up to return to them. for two more years easily to continue their work in in this line of programming and continue to engage with them and maintain their certification for two additional years If they choose to complete one segment each year. And In addition to this non credit offering The three segments that were built have now been repackaged and are in the process of being approved to be a full Semester. Course, where The, the lectures would be more expanded, of course, and all of the students That would be receiving academic credit also have an additional Project requirement. That’s a cumulative scaffolding type project. So it’s really interesting to see this this online offering that started from a field day became an online extension offering and is going to be further repackaged and re purpose to meet Some academic credit means for some programs. On the academic credit side. So that is our first example of how content can be repackaged into A course and and again this course was a six to eight hour time commitment for their continuing education credits. And I will just close this one and the next one. Is content that was actually originally in the academic credit realm and then The professor, Dr. Pete Piermarini recognized that there were select elements of this content that would be incredibly useful to those in veterinary science for continuing education credits so that tax or maybe even people with the health department who are Who need continuing education credits related to Entomology and vectors and disease. So he took out a select set of content from an academic course and reduce some of the assignment requirements and Package these up into modules for continuing education credits and this is the first one. And there are going to be a few more that come out of the academic credit course that he teaches this first one is an introductory introductory foundational level. module that is meant to be. The first and then the others will focus more closely on specific content of interest to particular groups. So an individual might be interested in. Another one that’s specifically about mosquitoes are specifically about Ticks or something like that. So this is an example of content that was repackaged from an academic course and Then moved out for an extension audience and what they’ve done what Dr. Piermarini has done his main teams. These lecture recordings with closed captions and again just sort of reduce some of the assignment requirements for these continuing education credits. So that’s our second example, our third example is probably the simplest and most straightforward example of taking an isolated piece of content from an academic credit environment and moving it to A non academic credit environment. So, this Is planting decisions module came out of an introduction to agronomy course. It’s actually Dr. Deana Namuth-Covert Content and she’s on the call today idea. So what we did is we found out that You know, there’s some really applied areas of content from this introduction to agronomy course that could be useful for potentially A certified crop advisor audience and we broke this down into just a single module, which is one chapter from a digital book. Oops. The link must be Broken Hold on. I think I know what happened here. So, From the digital book a user would be expected to read and interact with a chapter and This chapter was isolated from the book as well just to help users. Stay focused on what they needed and we added some additional interactive questions to this chapter. I’ll see if I can flip through it. So to make this more interactive. We added a few more interactive questions and then after moving through the content in this chapter, they would go back to the course and Take the quiz and when they scored the appropriate score for the quiz, they would Be granted their CEO. This is also moving through approval processes. But the idea here is this is just a one hour see us. So it’s really small. And it’s a really focused piece of content. So you don’t have to always If you’re moving online. It doesn’t always have to be large. It doesn’t have to be a whole lot of content. Maybe there are some really small specific pieces that would be utilized on their own as a standalone module for your target audience. And one thing I kind of neglected to do and some of these other courses is just to kind of show you some options for content so These mp4 files are I’ll just leave student view. I’m not sure what’s happening here. So these mp4 files are voiceover PowerPoint, which is a pretty standard content method delivery. It’s effective does include closed captions. We want to be mindful of accessibility. And then this also contains some assigned readings, which are I think some of these are more popular press type articles and some are journal articles. So you can combine all kinds of content sources. To build these modules and and really, it just depends on the content you need to convey the content you already have available to you and your target audience. Before I leave the screen share with these courses and modules. Does anybody have any questions that they’d like to ask or anything else, they’d like to see in here. I’m going to take the crickets as a no. So I will Go back to the PowerPoint and we’ll get back into How you might apply this to your own work. So to get started in repackaging and repurposing content, you’re going to want to identify who you’re trying to reach that you’re not already reaching so And a couple of our examples we were initially reaching a traditional student audience. And then we felt that the content would be highly applicable to industry professionals in whatever industry that might be And then you want to think about the content that is most valuable to that target audience. So certainly, these semester long courses, had you know 16 weeks worth of heavy content to pick from. But This extension audiences, they’re not going to be as interested in a huge 16 week time commitment. So we really think about what is most valuable, what is the content that they really need, and once And then break that content down into manageable chunks. For example, in the entomology course there were several units that could be applicable to the veterinary science professionals, the Health Department professionals. But in a professional development context, usually a time commitment of, you know, more than probably four weeks is is really difficult for people to manage when they’ve got full time jobs and everything else. So think about how you’re going to chunk that content out and then When you’ve kind of thought about Your target audience what’s useful to them and how you might break that content down to be more more manageable for them to deal with based on their time constraints or whatever considerations. You may also need to reconsider how the content is framed A lot of times in an academic setting we scaffold as we go along. For a 16 week semester and a shorter content unit, whether that’s a three hour extension course or a one hour module. You need to frame it appropriately for your audience. You’re going to possibly need to reconsider how you provide context for the audience how this applies to them how it’s useful to them and make it relevant and to the point for that target audience. And then you’re also going to want to consider how you might adjust your assessments, because, and it’s not necessarily needed to have a 50 question test for a simple Exploratory module where someone just wants to personally develop their skill set. Now, maybe with a certification course that would require more lengthy assessment. So think about The purpose that that content that module or courses fulfilling and then determine and how you want to assess their learning with that. So that’s all I have. I really wanted to open up the floor for you all to ask questions or you know maybe raise an idea, you have that you haven’t quite been able to sort out and Maybe we can all brainstorm together how you might tackle repackaging some content or offering some content to a new target audience. Amy, this is Deana, that was a nice overview. Excuse me. I’m curious of our other folks have attended today. So maybe Dean, Erin Kylienne. Are there some Some things are thinking about specifically for maybe repackaging and repurposing or Or just maybe what specific questions you have. There is some paperwork. We have to file. If you’re going to offer something for non credit certificate, but I can walk you through that. If you have questions on that. I’m this Kyle and really what I’m looking to do is maybe like three minute Teachings on things for that people will will watch Such as. Here’s a tip for successful onboarding of an employee and just like tips, instead of like a Testing module or something like that. Because one of the things when I’ve gone to Community Development pro conferences before a lot of a lot of people are doing those and they’re increasing their visibility and their success reaching people by just having short snippets that people watch So I just need to kind of figure out how to do that a lot of them bought expensive equipment to do that microphones and that type of thing. And I can’t afford that. So I keep looking for other ideas. And again, you know, here’s the successful. Here’s a tip for Using your strength finders or here’s a tip for dealing with difficult people or something like that so that we get people, you know, tuning in, but it’s not too long. So, Kyle. Are you thinking like short little video clips and then Would this be people that are already on like a that you have connections with, you know, like a blessed serve of sorts, or a social media platform or or is that what you’re trying to work through to Well, I think what we’re trying to do is build the the people that are you know app actually Like on our Facebook page and our social yeah you know presence, our Twitter mean we don’t have a lot of followers, so You know, it’s kind of got a dual fold you know purpose. I mean, we want to build that. Um, and, you know, is one thing, but you know we have to reach what we’ve got first and We have other people that are liking what we have and sharing it like when we’re looking for candidates for jobs. You know, we don’t have that many followers on our Facebook page, but I send things out to people that are in the community that are well connected and they forward it and people share it, but we would like to have more of those people following us. And I’ve been told by again at these conferences that this has been very successful for some people. Mm hmm. Right, so, um, are you thinking like these would be like out doors somewhere or these videos would be in an office. I don’t know exactly where you’re located there are some recording studios on campus. in Medina summit Maria County. So I’m in North Okay. And Then you know probably fall back on like an iPad or even an iPhone. You can usually do reasonable quality with, you know, just the devices you have on hand and then I think you can usually find some mics that are kind of inexpensive, that if you’re outdoors would help with the sound issues and then I don’t know what those little tiny tripods cost for like an iPhone, but I don’t think they’re terribly expensive. So as far as equipment goes, you can look into like smaller scale. And then for video you I know admin is working on like the social media guidelines, still I don’t quite know what all of that’s going to mean but I think a lot of it is just, you know, branding and accessibility to put our best foot forward and the online presence. So, though, those would be considerations. For your video pieces and then since you want them so short. I imagine you would want to Focus on like one idea just a single idea per video and and maybe you know frame it As you were talking about dealing with, you know, difficult or troublesome employees, maybe, so maybe frame it from like this scenario. Like, have you ever had that person who is, you know, constantly weight or whatever it might be, to provide a really good Hook to relate to the audience that you’re trying to reach Yeah. That totally makes sense. And we’re just gonna, I’m just in the early stages, but now this is very helpful. Thanks. And Kyle, this is Dina to. You want to make sure you capture those for ad accessibility. So Amy, I don’t know if you have some quick tips for how to do that, maybe for a short clip. So I guess it kind of also depends on where you’re posting your videos. You mentioned you wanted to Facebook followers. So I imagine those would be going through Facebook. Because Facebook, and I believe YouTube don’t play very nicely together. But for example, if you Record something in, zoom, there’s An automatic captioning feature with a transcript. It’s available now. I haven’t really worked in Facebook. To determine how to move the captions there but YouTube automatically generates captions as well. There’s also a platform called Otter AI that you can use to generate captions, but you can no longer export those captions in a usable caption file for free. So that’s a little tricky. I know that some people are really getting into experimenting with Adobe rush, which is provided through the creative Adobe Creative Cloud. tool set and I’m pretty sure you can add an edit captions and an Adobe rush. So that might be something to explore. You do need windows 10 for Adobe rush Okay, thanks. Dean. How about you, what are you thinking what’s on your mind. I’m really just kind of barely getting my feet wet. At this point, I guess I’m just looking for ideas of what other people are doing some of our groups and extension have had discussions about putting modules together and just kind of want to see what might be involved. Yeah, no, that’s great. Excellent. Erin. I see you’ve got a chat in I’ll go ahead and read that. So you don’t have a microphone. No worries. And you are looking to move and online base for some of your trainings really interested understand how The differences in terminology and how those two things so that you don’t have any specific questions today. You’ve been attending. Yeah, good. All these sessions to learn more and see how you can utilize them. Yeah. You know, and kind of along those lines to if you guys want access to some of the stuff that’s been developed. I’m usually we can get you like guest access. Sometimes it’s kind of nice to explore some of the models that people have been trying As a, as a yardstick participants and kind of see what your potential audience members will be seen and then you can take what works for you and then build from that. So let’s Erin. Kylienne did you have anything Yeah, I think we were, we are tripping up is the accreditation process or some of this content that we think would be valuable for professionals. So we have a good handle on the content creation and repackaging it’s just I didn’t find those accreditation bodies and working through their process. Got it. So you’re finding the professional societies that might be granting the CEO credits. Right. Got it. Now kindly and have I shared with you guys the form that you can fill out now to let the university know when you’re offering something for non credit Know, I would love to see it. OK, so I’ll do that I’ll email it all email it to all of you guys actually miss. It’s not an approval form. So the university in the last few months has Has kind of set in a new process. So if you are offering anything for certification for a non credit audience. Then they want to know about it. And so there’s a forum where he kind of just, you know, you kind of give the title if it’s being offered for the credits, who’s giving this to us and just a brief description of it a little bit. It doesn’t take long to fill out and then that goes to The academic affairs groups so kindly, and I think that would go to SC NR I’m a little bit unclear if it goes to the departments or if you can just take it right to the college Academic Affairs Committees. Gene Osborne has helped us with a couple already. Well, for one, for sure. There’s another group that’s going through It’s not, they don’t approve it. It’s just for them to be aware of what’s going on. And then it goes on to the Office of Academic Affairs and then I think what they do is at the end of the year, then they’re kind of telling you know what our impact is as a college and university for non credit And partly, where this spun out of is what I’m hearing is The higher learning higher education. Learning Commission and when they were it’s kind of taken look at our programs said hey whoa. Did you realize you have all these non credit things going on. And they weren’t being reported uniformly. And so that’s kind of what it is. So at first, it kind of seems like it’s for approval, but it’s not. You’re just reporting what you’re doing. And it’s only if you’re offering a non credit Events or online course for certification. So if you are getting seat you credits from another place, and you’ll need to report it. But, I’m, I’m happy to share it. I’ll show you with you guys a template, as well as an example that we’ve used with digital eggs and kind of see how we filled it out. But I think Colleen. You’re right on by trying to align with a professional society which routinely grants the CEO credits, then You know, you do have to get approval from them. Sometimes I’ll look at your content a little bit, some are a little bit easier than others, but then you’ll have automatic access to that target audience a little bit easier than trying to generate that Yep. Yeah. Erin, I see your note. So I’ll send it to all of you. I think we’ve got the registration list. So when we send out the link for today’s recording I’ll include the forums there too. Thanks for including all that information Deana. Yeah, I know this, the some of the administrative logistics that I do what I do the fun part, Amy. Yes, yeah. Thank you for handling that part. And one other thing I might kind of point out, it’s the Amy was talking about. So you know what she’s talking about. Really looking at your assessments. If you’re going from a credit audience to a non credit audience. And one thing that I’ve found useful. This is what the agronomy folks are plant breeding folks is Okay, so if I take like a three credit semester base long course. I tend to break it into three one credit sized modules. And then I tend to just have the non credit audience do like automatic quiz grading type of assessments. That way they don’t write papers they not go into detail with any exams. Um, we do give them something to do. That way they are working with the content and not just mindlessly listening to videos or if it’s a live presentation just kind of check it out. But it’s something that’s a little bit easier that way it doesn’t take so much time on the instructor Part two great all those but yet it’s enough to help the audience be engaged a little bit there. And then to if you have someone who decides later, hey, I’d like to do this for credit, then they just come back and sign up for the credit version and then do those other assignments that they did not go into detail with And that tends to work pretty good as far as like separating things out and then obviously when a new season example with Karen and Brian Where they’re going from an extension offering and repackaging for credit, then what they’re doing is adding to that body, then you know some more in depth, you know, assignments to do that you would expect a credit earner to go through But it works great. It’s a good way to get extra mileage and extra and impact for the content you develop. So we’ve had some good success with it. Any other questions or thoughts you guys Dean. I don’t know. For like helping you tip your toe in the water. If we just gave you a fire hydrant. Know, it was good seeing some of the examples that you put out. I appreciate that. I, those, those were helpful. Well, I don’t have really anything else prepared for today’s so if anybody wants to stay on the line and discuss any items of interest. I’m happy to stay a while. I mean, I’ve got 20 more minutes blocked off for this, but I’m going to go ahead and stop the recording.

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