Wednesday, April 20, 2011

ACS Business Skills Third Access

After seeing I could navigate the ACS Business Skills On-Line Pilot Program, I thought I should select some courses. One annoyance I have found is the log-on screen has an option for accessibility, but I have to click this each time I enter the site, the option does not appeared to be remembered in my learner profile.

Last time I got as far as finding there was noting in "My Plan", which I need to populate by selecting some courses. What is confusing is that I do not appear to be able to add courses from "My Plan" but have to instead navigate my way to the catalogue.

At the catalogue I was confronted with "Your current selection is My Assignment". It is always worrying for any student to be told that they have an assignment to do. My "Reflections of an Online Student" describes the worry caused by not knowing what I had to do in the last online course I tried. In this case I can't work out what "My Assignment" is, as when I click on it, nothing seems to happen.

Further down on the same screen I am offered: 1 Hour Courseware, Business Skills Curricula, IT Professional Curricula and Business Exploration Series. These appear to be selections of courses (with then sub-folders and sub-sub-folders with further categories of courses).

Judging by the first branch of this tree, there appear to be about 60 courses in total offered for the pilot. The problem with this is that there is too much choice and not enough information on which to make a decision. This contrasts with the UK's Open University, which provides fuller descriptions for its courses.

Also the descriptions do not appear to be accurate, as an example I selected "Emotional Intelligence Essentials" from the 1 Hour Course-ware, but found it was made up of two modules, each of one hour, making it a total of two hours (not one).

I clicked to add the course to my plan and was asked for a "Goal". At this point my goal was to add the course to my plan, but I assume this was intended to be a description of what I wanted from the course. But like any student, what I want to do is complete the course and at least pass. There was also a "due date" set to tomorrow (which seems reasonable for a two hour course). There is an option to send me a reminder, which I assume this is in the absence of a human tutor to remind me to do my work.

Then I added a second course on "soft skills", which also had the default completion date of tomorrow. This seems less reasonable, as it assumes I am going to do three hours of courses in one day.

I added several more courses. It is not clear to me what happens next. Am I promoted to start the courses? Is there some sort of introduction to how to do such courses first?

No comments: