Friday, 7 March 2014

Weekly Report & Reflection blog post # 7

This week I was challenged to complete a collaborative group project that had to be done completely online. In retrospect, It was quite unique, posing it's own set of challenges, distinct from any face to face collaborative project that I've ever worked on before. 

Finding a partner: I tried unsuccessfully on Twitter and Sakai to make the link with a few other classmates to complete this project. Finally I was contacted via Twitter by a classmate JW asking if we could work together. I agreed and explain that I was a strictly online/off-campus student so online was the only possible way. 

Maintaining contact: JW and I messaged each other on twitter and shared phone numbers and email addresses to add as alternative methods of communication. 

Decisions: We both quickly decided what topic we would like to do for the project and agreed that we would take the weekend to read the assignment requirements and begin collecting information on topic. That following week, we again made contact via Twitter and Text. We shared our individual research with each other via email, evernote and twitter. 

Bringing it together: We both did sample presentations and shared it with each other via GMail Google Docs. This was an awesome tool that allowed us to create, share, and edit the same document without having it being sent back and forth as an attachment and then each person editing. This saved valuable time. 
A todaysmeet account was set up where we again confirmed details of the final product. From there we pulled slides from both  and incorporated it into one coherent document. We were able to work together in getting the project completed way ahead of schedule and both submitted it two days prior to the due date.

Challenges: Personally I felt very worried as to how my partner would perceive me. Without knowing my personality, work ethics, life schedule, background or abilities, I was at the mercy of a stranger's imagination! Would my distribution and allocation of time be received well? I tried to be as diligent as possible on this assignment without expressing my struggle to manage time with three sons under the age of nine years all with different extra curricular  activities (basketball, soccer and taekwando), different school times, a wife who is working full time and studying and me working full time and doing two courses simultaneously! 
Do I explain and run the risk of sounding like I was making excuses or do I suck it up and give it my all ..... I sucked it up!

In the end the experience was a great one and I must say that my partner was quite good. We did not encounter any roadblocks. We worked around our schedules and got the job done. Using solely online tools we were able to come up with a great project given the specified assignment parameters.
The tools that we used for gathering, sharing and presentation will definitely remain as part of my personal and professional toolkit in enhancing my PLE!


“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

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