I am planning on graduation in May 2015. I want a Spring graduation because I fully intend to attend and work/weather could be a factor in the Winter. Therefore, I need to double up one semester. I have two options:
1. Double up in Spring 2015 by taking an elective plus the portfolio course. This is not my desired choice. I would like my last semester to be dedicated to completing my portfolio. I wouldn't want another course to distract me. If there is anyone who has taken the portfolio course with another course and could provide insight, please do.
2. Double up in Spring 2014. This would allow me to focus solely on the portfolio the next year. However, I work full-time and know that the time commitment of two classes would be enormous (especially if they required a lot of reading; I prefer the more activity heavy courses). Thus, I would like anyone who has taken the following courses to provide insight into them to help me decide the courses best for me.
|506: Graphic Design for Learning|
|511: Interactive Courseware Design|
|532: Educational Games and Simulations|
|541: Integrating Technology into the Classroom Curriculum|
|597: Introduction to Edutainment|
Of the classes you listed, I have only taken 532, but I would think this would be a good class to double-up with another class this spring for several reasons (assuming the class has the same format as last year).
1. It's fun! There are not too many classes where playing games is considered conducting research. You will not mind staying up late to do your homework.
2. The class is run like a game in that you accumulate points based on completing assignments or "quests" of your choice. There aren't too many assignment or "quests" that have to be done by a particular due date. You goal is to obtain the number of points necesssary to reach the rank (grade) you are aiming for by the end of the class. If one week you are busy with work and other assignments from another class, then you can just choose to do quests that are a little less involved. When you have more time on your hands, you can focus on some of the bigger quests.
3. It's fun! (Just had to emphasize this again.)
4. It is co-taught by Dr. Haskell and Dr. David Gibson. I liked have two instructors with differing experiences/backgrounds running the class. Both provided excellent feedback on assignments and made for a very enriching learning environment.
The only consideration is that there are required synchronous meetings one night a week in Second Life, so you would need to make sure your schedule allows you to attend those.
Again, this is how the class was conducted last year. You might want to contact Dr. Haskell to see if it will be run in a similar fashion this year.
Hope this helps,
I took 4 of these classes and loved them. At the time I did 597: Edutainment (Spring 2011, I think) I was taking two other classes at a community college online so I was kept very busy. Edutainment required a bit of reading and I think I wrote some of my favorite papers for that class. 506 and 511 are as time consuming as you make them to be. I saw many of my peers do what seemed like minimal work and get through the class. I have no clue what their grades were, nor do I know if that matters to you. For both 506 and 511 I worked my hiney off and even though I may have come to tears at one point, these were among the best classes I've ever taken. I am fairly certain I got my current job because of what I learned in 511. 513 is worth every minute of it, too. Since I had already taken 506 and 511, 513 went very smoothly for me. The reading was not too much of a challenge because of the readings for 506 and 511. I honestly don't remember much reading for 511. It was more of a struggle to learn how to come to terms with Flash. If you have a clue about how to use Flash, then 511 will be a breeze for you.
You can't go wrong with any of those classes. I do not recommend taking 506 and 511 at the same time unless you really like using Adobe software to create things. I also recommend taking them before the Portfolio class so you can work on revising a project for the Portfolio instead of creating one from scratch and hoping it is satisfactory.
From what I understand, it is highly recommended you do the Portfolio course on its own, but that depends on the person, I suppose. I'm doing the Portfolio in the spring and at the moment it is my only class from any online school. Now that I have a job, I'm cutting back to 1 class per semester.
Are you already planning to take a class over the summer? I can't tell from your description if you plan to use summertime for a class. You may also want to be careful which course you choose to do during the summer because they really do go twice as fast as the normal semester.
I'm not sure this helps because my situation is not a normal one and I'm not a normal person, so my point of view may be totally whacked. All of the courses you listed that I have taken were worth every minute of my time they took out of my day. None of them were easy or not time consuming. Edutainment required both reading, writing, and projects. 506 and 511 were more Adobe based projects than intensive reading. 513 was more project based than lots of reading, too.
Good luck with this decision. Is spring 2016 out of the question?
I am working toward a district administration certificate/Masters, but I want to take some design classes. If you had to choose between 511 and 513 for laying a foundation and creating some great curriculum for a math class, which would you choose?
I have taken 2 courses each semester except for my first semester. I have found it very challenging as I work full-time at a university in instructional technology. However, I can say that it has not been impossible. I have completed the program in 2 years. I am taking 522 and Portfolio at this time. While it is not ideal, it's not impossible either. If you have kept great records of your work to use in the portfolio, you should be fine.
I did take 541 and 597. Both are very active courses, but could easily be taken while completing portfolio.
I hope that helps a little.
Hi Joseph! Like everyone has said it definitely depends on the person, but I have actually taken 3 classes every semester and work full time. (I'm gone 11 hrs a day) I don't have kids, but I do have a husband. It has been stressfull at times, but not impossible. I have taken some of those classes and I think 513 is by far the best class to take. Professor Hall is great! I think it's the perfect class to take with another class. There is not a ton of reading and its mainly multimedia creations and projects. Its very doable. Hope this helps! Good Luck! Feel free to email me if you want to firstname.lastname@example.org
Emily- Did you ever take 3 classes in the summer?
I will lend some advice from a professor's perspective: Examine your work, family, and civic obligations very, very closely. Doing two classes in a semester is essentially the same as working a part-time job. There is a lot riding on your portfolio, so be certain you have time to do it. Rushing through simply to "get done" may not be worth the stress.
Stacie asked about doing three courses during the summer. I personally highly recommend against this as each course is already crammed into 8 weeks. I have had students only taking two summer courses tell me it was way, way too much for them.
Remember, just because our courses are online and "convenient / flexible," does not mean the work can be crammed into the corners of life. One really must make a conscientious commitment to "class time" despite not having to come to campus. When one considers that we expect students to work 9-12 hours per week per course, those add up quickly - esp. in the summer.
Funny, if you read all of our comments we should reflect about OUR online students. The same advice Dr Perkins stated applies, students need to make real time to do online work, not just cram it in when one has time. This is by far the biggest reason for drops in my online classroom. Students don't realize the committment of time needed.
In addition, most of us agree, we enjoyed the interactive courses such as Multimedia the most. It seems we are no different than our online students once again, we all enjoy less reading and more doing...
Remember this when you design your courses in the future...