Ben Wilkoff posted a great video blog called #ETMOOC Is Overwhelming. So, Let’s Make Some Meaning. It really resonated with me. Ben talks about the fact that MOOCs can be very overwhelming, and that to be successful you can’t read every tweet, blog post and Google+ comment. You need to find people with whom you connect and create a smaller community to learn with and from. Benjamin’s post ties in nicely with this post from Stephen Downes; What Makes a MOOC Massive? What I took away from Downes was that for a MOOC to be considered massive there must be enough active participants that sub-communities form.
I guess the question that I have with after reading Downes’ post and watching Benjamin’s video is how do I find my sub-community in ETMOOC? A start for me would be to identify just what it is that I would like to focus on in ETMOOC. At this point it would have to be fairly general, as I still don’t have a good sense of what this course is all about. Then I need to be posting about what my focus is and reflecting on how I’m doing in the hopes of starting conversations with others. I’ll also be finding conversations that interest me on the ETMOOC Blog HUB, Google+ Community, and #etmooc Twitter stream and leaving comments. The ETMOOC sub-community that I’m envisioning will probably be fluid and perhaps could be better termed a network. The people with whom I connect at the beginning, middle and end of ETMOOC will no doubt change.
So far what I’ve described isn’t terribly focussed and relies a lot on serendipity. In fact, it sounds a lot like how I’ve been developing my PLN (personal learning network). Because this is a course though, with a beginning and an end, I feel like I need to be more intentional. Perhaps I should also be putting a call out and organizing a chat, or a online place to meet? For example; “All ETMOOCers interested in topic ______ please join our twitter chat / Google Hangout / wiki / … “
What do you think? How are you finding and building your #ETMOOC sub-community or network?