by Elizabeth Childs.  

Hello Everyone,

Happy Wednesday! I know it is hard to believe it, but we are into Unit 4 this week in our course! Unit 4 runs over the next two weeks and invites us to focus on the impact of digital learning environments, networks, communities as we take what we learned thus far in the course and apply it to larger issues.

We had a great discussion today in Collaborate with those who were able to join us in and did some debate debrief as well as orientation to Unit 4 and to the briefing note assignment. The recording for our May 26, 2021 session can be found here and as always, if you have any questions after listening to the recording please do not hesitate to ask.

I know many of you have reached out to schedule a session with our MALAT team coach Julia which is great! Last year about this time Julia hosted a great conversation focused on tips and strategies for making your virtual team experience a strong one. In doing so, she sent along a tips sheet for transitioning teams as well as some resources for developing critical thinking in teams. I have added all of them to our Moodle shell in a folder called Team Resources and encourage you to explore them and the other team resources as you are able. 

In addition to the Unit 4 readings, there are two activities in Unit 4 and one debate debrief discussion. Be sure to check the course Schedule for due dates:

  • Unit 4 Activity 1 - which is a pair or triad activity with the purpose of beginning to discuss some of the impacts of digital learning. As outlined in the activity description, you will need to use this Google doc, to pair up (triads are fine if needed). Each pair/triad should focus on a contemporary societal problem, such as poverty, racism, lack of learning opportunities in rural areas, and other topic of your choice. I see that many of you have already been into the google doc and are well underway. I am looking forward to seeing what emerges from your work. 
  • Assignment Three - the briefing note assignment is due June 6th. In the assignment description you will also see the link to the Briefing Note google doc "book" that has been built over the years by previous students. You are invited and encouraged to share yours to this book as well if you are able when it is ready. I spoke a bit more about this in our synchronous session today. As a gentle reminder, the briefs contained in the google book represent all aspects of the RRU MA grading continuum, and may have ideas for references or additional articles that might support a point you are trying to make. There is also a briefing note FAQ's document linked from the assignment description but I have put it here as well so you have it handy ;)

And last but not least, if you would like some feedback on your individual writing don’t hesitate to reach out to the RRU Writing Centre and book an appointment. I am also happy to have you send me one of your blog posts that you would like some feedback on if that would be useful to you as well.

Okay I think that is it from this end for now. Have a great week and enjoy Unit 4!