I've spent a considerable amount of time researching, reviewing and evaluating the advent of Massively Open Online Courses. My masters degree, in Instructional Systems Design I've assisted the University of Kentucky with recruiting and enrolling record numbers for their MOOCs, Intro to Biology, Psychology and College Readiness. I've met with David Malan and the CS50 staff (the worlds largest MOOC) and even wrote a review of their delivery, technology and how it builds a rich learning culture - even in an online environment.
I'm faced with a larger challenge, combining my passion and interest with service as a veteran with instructional design, technology and policy. We were recently awarded a sizable grant to aid in the development of the Veteran College Transition MOOC.
My first job following graduation was with the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, developing a project that interviewed combat veterans. Throughout my time interviewing, I noticed a theme across all interviewees in which they all had a rough and troubled transition from active duty military into higher education. It mostly stemmed from their disdain of TAPS (Transition Assistance Program). After my 2nd or 3rd interview was to help tease out some of the bigger issues with veteran transition and the noticeable problems with the curriculum and preparation strategies used.
Now, we're in a serious position to make a difference. Equipped with a grant, camera and studio equipment and a serious love for instruction design and educational technology, we're seeking to make a real difference.
At this point we're still developing modules and are looking for input from all angles, sources and experts. Ideally, I'm currently searching for veterans that have recently transitioned, veterans that are interested in edtech, instructional systems design or higher ed. We have a thread on reddit/r/veteran to facilitate the conversation, input and contributions for material, subjects, resources and curriculum design. We'll start filming in approximately three weeks and input and contributions will be heard. So, please, take a moment and sound off. Our goal is to make this project a truly open-sourced class for veterans and military service members across the world, designed and delivered by veterans, for veterans.