Orienting, Not Informing

Dave Cormier, Inside Higher Ed, Sept 07, 2016
Commentary by Stephen Downes
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Dave Cormier's column on campus orientation would probably have been of more use published a couple weeks or a month ago, so people could follow his advice. Now they can only compare what they're currently doing with what he's done. Cormier describes the use of a "MOOC-style orientation course" over several years on the UPEI campus, and his recommendation is that institutions ought not "be trying to MOOC our way out of orientation with mass online orientation experiences." Or rather, he says, "I don’t think online orientation can be the sole approach we take, if our goals include retention and - at the core of retention - belonging." Why? "While information can be handy, information doesn’t create change by itself.... You can’t tell people to believe they can do things any more than you can sit people in a classroom and tell them to make healthy connections with each other. It’s an experiential process."

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