MOOCs, OERs, Open and Distance Learning: Past, Present and Future by Dr. Cengiz Hakan Aydin (Regional Speakers)

by Tuyet Hayes (Guest Blogger)


Dr. Hakan Aydin, Professor of Educational Communications and Technology and Dean of the Faculty of Economics at Anadolu University presented a very informative overview of open education trends.  With 30,000 traditional and 2.4 distance education students, Anadolu University in Turkey ranks as the third largest university in the world by enrollment.  This mega university offers over 2000 distance education courses, all of which are produced in house.

Aydin distinguished between OERs (Open Education Resources), MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), and the ODL (open and distance learning) program at Anadolu.  In comparison, it seems the ODL program at Anadolu focuses more on providing quality resources and support through a number of efforts including specially designed textbooks and resources, flexible and varied instructional options (F2F, asynchronous, synchronous), call centers, and tutors.  One area that seemed to distinguish Anadolu University was the mandated use of proctored tests for assessment.

I was surprised to learn that while some universities might fear offering OERs or MOOCs due to an expected drop in traditional student enrollment, the opposite seemed to be true.  Enrollment in traditional programs at Anadolu actually increased annually by 11% for the past four years as they increased the number of open courses offered.  Offering open courses seems to be an effective marketing tool to expose and attract students to traditional programs.  Aydin concluded with the idea that OERs and MOOCs would have a role in the continued “unbundling” of university services such as content, certification, assessment, guidance, and research.


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Using Google Calendars for Cloud Based Personal and Collaborative Lesson Planning by Dana Ishii (Featured Educational Technology Master Student))

by Jon Pennington (Guest Blogger)


Dana Ishii, Master’s student at Dana Ishii, University of Hawaii at Manoa uses Google Calendar to offer an innovative solution to a teacher’s common problem. Her use of this tool as a “perpetual lesson planner” is the kind of development that encourages teachers to collaborate online for the clear purpose of improving the efficiency of their practice. With the same lessons being repeated each year by different teachers, around the same time of year, this solution is practical by providing a shared organizational system that saves teachers the time of remembering what they did last year and digging up that old assignment. Dana created an online training module to provide guidance and resources for teachers using Google Calendar as a collaborative lesson planner. This site was purposively designed to offer an effective teaching module that engages all learners. Her website is also a place that provides relevant insight into a previously untested system. With these considerations, Dana conducted usability tests on her website to determine how well it functioned for her intended purposes. She shares her methodology and reminds us of the power of living in beta- trying new things, not being afraid to fail and improving what you are doing as you go along.   Dana’s session was interesting and inspiring. One useful area for future research on this topic would be an evaluation of Google Calendar as a tool for collaborative lesson planning. This may provide insight into how to improve the use of the tool for this process.

Dana Ishii Contact Information:

Twitter: @danaishii  Facebook:

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Nā Iʻa Kapu: A Pre-Visit Online Lesson for Hanauma Bay by Anne Rosa (Featured Educational Technology Master Student)

by Emily McCarren (Guest Blogger)

University of Hawaii masters student, Anne Rosa gave a great TCC presentation about her work building a module for preparing students to enjoy the remarkable natural beauty of Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve, in Honolulu, Hawai’i. I loved her presentation on many levels– the method of her usability study was flawless and very carefully done. Also, the design of the module, and also her stunning presentation slides are reminiscent of the natural beauty of the bay itself.








Being a fellow resident of O’ahu and also a student of the department of Educational Technology at UH, I thought the way that Anne was able to connect her coursework in educational technology to her passion, and her career, was just awesome. How wonderful to be given the opportunity to serve so many needs with this project.

Anne has beenfocused on createing usable, culturally appropriate, relevant and authentic materials to support students all over Hawai’i (and perhaps beyond) in enjoying the bay. Her actual project is really fun for students of all ages– you can have a look here.

Also, her reflection on the results of her usability study were interesting, and her aspirations for future improvements, ambitious and laudable. Anne reflected on a commitment to connecting the learning to a foundation firmly rooted in hawaiian culture in the module. Also she discussed the possibility of creating audio sections for younger students who can’t manage reading the content easily.

Anne’s work was a great example of the dynamic results that can come from technically savvy, passionate, place-based educators. Anne is a great example of just such a thoughtful, creative and committed person who is driven to support the learning of our keiki about our beautiful home.

You can contact Anne at



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Online Military Student Orientation by Eduard Merc (Featured Educational Technology Student)

by Rian Barreras (Guest Blogger)


Eddie Merc is an outstanding third year student in the Educational Technology program at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. While he is a man of many talents, his career path has lead him to Hawai‘i Pacific University where he works as the Interim Director for Distance Education.

Image2Image3During his 2014 TCC presentation, Eddie shared an online module which is designed to encourage and support military personnel who are both deployed overseas and seeking higher education. The Online Military Student Orientation features a mini-course environment as a university level class. Eddie has designed the course to consist of multiple interactive modules that aim to engage learners in information sharing, hands on exercises and formative assessments. This online course was constructed as a way to help veterans acclimate to online learning and build the skills necessary to succeed in the long term and eventually complete the degrees they seek. These modules were presented to us as more of prototype, but it is clear that Eddie’s thoughtful and tailored work has been specifically designed to meet the needs of learners new to the online learning environment. Although this particular project is designed for military personnel learners, it is easy to see these modules benefiting all distance learners. The possible applications for these modules could truly benefit a multitude of online students. I guess that’s why his ETEC friends lovingly call him Ready Eddie!

Eduard Merc Contact Information:










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It’s Free, So What? by Dr. Paul McKimmy (Keynote Speaker)

by Rebecca Meeder (Guest Blogger)


I met Dr. Paul McKimmy nine years ago, when I started working for him at the Technology and Distance Programs (TDP) office at the College of Education. I was a graduate assistant, starting to mentor instructors on online teaching, and was just starting to learn about the wonderful world of technology and education. While working at TDP over the next five years, I observed Dr. McKimmy during the various events and activities that TDP helmed. I noticed that he often promoted free and open educational resources. Also, when I had one-on-one conversations with him, Dr. McKimmy would talk about open resources. He did so this afternoon as well during his presentation on Open Education Resources, also known as OERs.

A few of the main discussion points Dr. McKimmy presented were topics I had heard about before. He talked about what OERs are and the various ways using OERs can benefit instructors and organizations. Some of the benefits include saving money as well as enabling equal access to all. Dr. McKimmy also touched on other OER topics I never knew about such as the option of contracting with vendors that specialize in supporting those who use OERs, and the issues with time and control that come with using OERs.


Dr. McKimmy’s slide about the Four Freedoms of OERs

Mostly, what I came away with was that we, as instructors and designers, have the ability to advocate the use of OERs in our organizations and in our own communities. During the presentation, Dr. McKimmy asked, “Where will you influence OER adoption?” Even though I often read about and discussed this topic with my fellow peers while enrolled in the Educational Technology program at the University of Hawai’i, I had all but forgotten about it after entering the workforce. Most of the organizations I worked with used commercial educational resources that were already provided when I entered the job.

Yet, now that I am moving toward my goal of eventually working as a higher education instructor, I believe that this is an important topic that I need to consider once again. Should I include OERs into my future curriculum? Overall, I think it is important to at least have an awareness of OERs and ponder how they influence education as a whole. After all, Persian poet Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi once said “The mind, this globe of awareness, is a starry universe that when you push off with your foot, a thousand new roads become clear, as you yourself do at dawn, sailing through the light.” Hopefully, an awareness of OERs can help open new ways, or “roads,” that educators and students can think about regarding educational resources and where they come from.

Paul_McKimmy Contact Information:


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TCC 2014 Presenter & Facilitator Orientation

A special Blackboard Collaborate (BBC) orientation and training session is scheduled for Tuesday, April 15 at 2:00 pm HST (5:00 pm Pacific, 7:00 pm Central, 8:00 pm Eastern, 9:00 am Wednesday Japan).

To join this session:

Enter your first and last name and your current location. Click Enter Now!

If you are a first-time user of Blackboard Collaborate, please sign in 15-20 minutes prior to the start.

For other timezones:

Test your computer for use with BBC

For assistance, send email to Anyone interested is invited to participate.

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TCC Pre-Con Recording

TCC Pre-Con was successfully completed on March 25. If you attended, we ask you to complete an evaluation by Tuesday, April 1 to help us improve for next year’s Pre-Con:

A recording of Pre-Con is available through our TCC Online Conference Page:

Thank you for attending Pre-Con . We look forward to seeing you at the TCC 2014 Worldwide Online Conference on April 22-24, 2014!

To register for the April 22-24 conference:

For Frank Jumawan and the TCC 2014 conference team

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