Certificate of Online & Open Learning

Certificate of Online & Open Learning: A Collaborative Post Between Paula van Wyk & Richard Lebert

You may have seen posts about #COOL18 and wondered what this odd hashtag meant. #COOL18 is used on social media by educators who are working on a Certificate of Online & Open Learning (COOL).

This is a professional certificate program through The University of Windsor designed to prepare instructors for designing, developing and teaching high quality online, blended, technology-enhanced, and open courses.

If the idea of open pedagogy is something that is of interest to you, this program may be a great fit. Need more convincing … No problem, here we have put together a brief introduction to four of the innovative concepts covered in this online certificate.


Concept 1: Making Lessons Stick – Planning for Quality Design

“Silly Rabbit! Trix are for Kids!” (Trix Cereal), “Have it your way!” (Burger King),
“Got Milk?” (California Milk Producers), “Like a good neighbour, State Farm is there” (State Farm Insurance), “I’m Lovin’ It” (McDonalds), “Snap! Crackle! Pop!” (Rice Krispies), “Maybe She’s Born With It, Maybe It’s Maybelline” (Maybelline), “Because You’re Worth It” (L’Oreal), “Just Do It” (Nike), “It Keeps Going, and Going, and Going” (Energizer), “Don’t Leave Home Without It” (American Express).

Storyboard Example

Slogans and Gimmicks attract attention. Perhaps they even help aid memory. However, before we draw individuals in to what we may be selling (or teaching) we need to ensure the product is worthy of the attention as well.

As part of PWYT you will learn how to develop a storyboard that emphasize the importance and structure of your lessons. To learn more about the 5 Step Process, check out this H5P (a tool presented as part of the COOL Certificate):


Concept 2: Making Lessons Accessible - Open Educational Resources

Think about your days as a student, was there ever a time when you had the option of choosing an amazing elective course? Then when you go to register for the course the required textbook was too expensive. The unfortunate reality is that students may end up passing on courses due to costs. It doesn’t have to be that way, there are options.

 Share, Collaborate, Remix, Reuse 

Share, Collaborate, Remix, Reuse 

Open educational resources (OERs) make textbooks accessible and affordable. In The Anatomy of a 21st Century Educator Nick Baker gave an inspiring overview of current challenges and opportunities in regards to OERs.

There are a number of OERs that are available right now that are free to use and licensed under the creative commons, which may mean that you are able to adapt the text to suit your needs. E-campus Ontario has a large library of open textbooks, check it out maybe you will be able to incorporate one of the textbooks into your next class.


Concept 3: Making Class Fun - Augmented Reality

The reality is that despite our best efforts we are often playing second fiddle to technology. So instead of competing against technology, let’s use mobile devises to give students a novel learning experience.

With the increasing availability of phones and tablets that can support augmented reality capable apps. Lessons that bring augmented reality in the classroom has become a reality. For an example of a real world application, check out this program that helps learners visualize anatomy.  


Concept 4: Making Use of Free Software

FREE! Did someone say free? Sure did! Throughout the COOL18 certificate each instructor shares with you a vast library of free options for you to explore and potentially use for one of your classes. One such tool was H5P as you saw above as well as the following tools and resources:

 This meme was created using makeameme.org

This meme was created using makeameme.org


So... What is COOL

In the end… What is COOL? It is QUALITY. It is OPEN. It is FUN. It is COLLABORATIVE. Perhaps “Quality Collaborative Open Fun” was already a course title in operation – so Certificate of Online & Open Learning (COOL) will have to take its place. J There is so much more we could share with you about our experiences, but why not just sign up and find out for yourself? All the COOL kids are doing it!