Tuesday, December 16, 2008

e-Learning Course on Green ICT Strategies: Part 12 Two Week 7s

In Part 11 I looked at courses were being offered around the world as part of preparing a new e-learning course on "Green IT Strategies", to be offered as part of the ACS Computer Professional Education Program. That showed what I was doing was consistent with the limited other courses available. So I continued on preparing the material for each week of the course (I have a Christmas deadline to have it finished). But at week seven (out of 13) I discovered a problem: I had scheduled two week sevens.

The course is thirteen weeks long. It was suggested I leave the last week for revision, giving twelve weeks. These were then divided into four topics, each with three weekly topics. I started with an introduction in week one and then went on setting down the topics for each week. But I forgot to count week one, thus ending up with an extra topic.

So now I had to work out what to do. This may seem a careless mistake which should have been caught earlier on, which it is. One reason for the mistake taking so long to find is the online preparation of the material. On my small screen, with a big font (to make it readable) only one topic can be displayed at a time. Thus I never saw the two "week 7" titles on the screen at the same time. Had I printed the document out, this would have been easier to spot.

When I went back and reread the advice I had been originally given by David Lindley, Academic Principal of ACS Education, I realised that the problem was not that bad. He suggested 4 major topics each of three weeks, with each week is a new sub-topic, which is what I did. But I got a little confused and wrote the introduction as a separate week. So all I had to do was merge the introduction into week one.

At this point I thought I should do some more checks of the material. I found a number of spelling mistakes. There seems to be a conflict between the Firefox add-on spell checker and the Moodle web based HTML editor, resulting in the spell checker not working some of the time (the same happens with the Blogger editor). Just to make sure, I used the grammar and spell checker extension for OpenOffice.org. This found a few repeated words, blank spaces, uses of "can not" instead of "cannot" and the like.

One problem I found was that one of the semianr topics (week 6) seems to be un-editable. I suspect there was some invalid HTML code which is causing problems for the Moodle editor. Running the code through HTML Tidy, fixed the problem.

No comments: