While I am enjoying the MLA Web 2.0 101 class, I have a confession to make: my sociocultural anthropology side is learning far more by observing my colleagues in the course than my librarian side is with the curriculum. Sorry. Apparently I'm such a Lackluster Veteran (although I don't quite fit the demographics, what are you?) that it's a serious challenge for me to be 'ooh, ahh!' about Web 2.0.
When we arrived at the midpoint of our 8 week class, more than a few colleagues expressed dismay at falling behind due to a variety of reasons that mostly involve time and/or technology & requesting/proposing alternate arrangements. I am certainly sympathetic to the demands of the life/work/education balance yet somewhat puzzled. There appear to be common expectations that our coursework would tidily fit in with our regular routine at our jobs without any extra effort (i.e. homework) required.
I'm fascinated by this and want to understand why as a future online teacher. Were these expectations because the class is free? Online? Massive at over 600? Something in the way it was marketed to MLA members? Having the curriculum administered via a blog? How is this class any different than a college course where professors surely must hear the same things from students at midterms? Do we truly value CEs or see them as something we sit through, grab our certificates for our points then head out without much further reflection on the material?
As I've shared in my profile, I was a full time distance education library school student for 16 months while working at a non-library job 24 hours a week and being some semblance of a wife & mom to a preschooler. If there was a Most Non-Existant Friend award for 2006-2007 I probably would have won it, but I think most of my friends understood & have forgiven me :)
I say this not to boast or suggest taking that life/work/education balance to anyone (I'd discourage it unless you want to question your sanity on a regular basis), but to note that I'm still not certain if I am a freak or a geek by osmosis by being online since the early 1990s and comfortable with learning information in whatever form as rapidly as possible. I have to be careful as I teach in the future to realize that many (most?) of my colleagues are not set on automatic information-seeking overdrive, although I believe that many (most?) of our users are. Of course this depends on our particular library and services, but perhaps this is part of the current disconnect where users are not perceiving libraries as being of value.
3 hours ago