Friday, 18 April 2008

Revised A&D Pilot Plan

I've been engaged in some delicate negotiations to make sure that I get the real life environment right for the A&D pilot, and this has forced a few changes to the original pilot plan.

I had the usual Mac teaching room booked for the pilot, but the final year deadlines fall smack bang in the middle of the pilot, so I have been trying to find a room to use that wont have stressed out 3rd years banging on the door in tears, desperate for a computer.

Fortunately, I've managed to secure the use of a nice, quiet room for the Tuesday and Wednesday of the first week, and the Monday of the second week. We can get back in the teaching room on the Monday of the last week of the pilot, when the third years are all in the pub.

So the plan at the moment involves structured, blended face-to-face classes on 6th, 7th, 12th and 19th May, with in-world and informal one-to-one support in the open access labs on the other days. I have also cut the group size down to 10 students, mainly because I can only nab 11 computers, but also because I realised that I don't believe in class sizes above 10. Well, I can work with class sizes of either more than 60 or less than 10, but I've worked out over the years that in-between - 20 or 30 students - is the least effective class size to deal with. In addition, if we get too many avatars on one sim, the avie induced lag would become problematic. So, 10 students it is.

Other changes from the last pilot plan - Following enquiries with Linden Lab, it is too expensive to buy names for the students, and we can't buy the actual accounts, so i've dropped that part altogether. I've also dropped the OpenSim networked part for now, as I felt it was too similar to the Second Life bit, and time will be short. We also have lots of great data coming in from Dave C about networked OpenSim to feed into the project outcomes.

I've tested OpenSim standalone and Second Life on the Macs that we will be using for the Pilot, and that all seems fine.

I'm meeting with the 10 student that we will be working with on 28th April, so that might be a good time to hand out the questionnaires.

The revised pilot plan is here:

http://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=ddnqhb8f_1f2dpxjft&hl=en_GB

1 comment:

Dave said...

Remind me to talk to you about the 'Dunbar' constant. It outlines naturally forming group sizes which chimes with you class size thoughts.