This is the final reflection and is my final blog for IFN612. In this reflection I am going to talk about my expectations of this unit, the learning environment, my personal choice of the most and the least interesting of weekly topics, and the key things I have learned from this unit.
To be honest, in the beginning I was quite worried to take this unit because I am not a quick adopter of the new technologies. I’d love to learn but it takes time.
When I refer to the unit online in QUT Virtual, especially from the content (see Figure 1), I thought that I would be overwhelmed with these kinds of technologies. I worried if I had to create an app with unfamiliar technologies or I had to use coding or programming. But my expectation was totally wrong. In reality this unit was really fun, engaging and helped me to know and play with various new technologies without feeling overwhelmed. This can be seen through the ‘fortnightly playing activities’. The lecturer offered several options and I could pick whichever one I liked to do by considering my capability of completing the task in question. If I later wanted to know more about completing other options, I could read and learn from my peers’ blogs.
Instead of using Blackboard as a unit site, the teaching team created IFN612 unit site. On this site I also have to create my blog. I think it is an excellent medium to use as we can have all information related to the course in the one place. We can see who is online on the site, read peers’ blogs, give comment, see the new announcements, view what’s on Twitter (#ifn612), ask questions, communicate with peers and of course access learning materials. However, the unfriendly user interface of the blog and spam were annoying but again that’s technology, none of the technologies are perfect. But I can learn from this experience when I decide to use blog later on, either for my personal or professional purposes.
The mix of online activities and workshops was excellent as I can learn how the theories are linked to real world applications or vice versa. The use of various media sources for weekly learning materials was great as it helped students to not get bored with text-reading materials.
In regards to assessment, I would like to focus on the first assignment, creating a persona. I enjoyed do this assignment as I was not forced to use the imaging software, I could use the simple one that was Microsoft Power Point. I just realised that I can use Microsoft Power Point to create a poster. However, I felt awkward because I had to create a persona based on my experience. That’s why I found difficulties in creating information to put on the persona as a required. I think it might be better if students were provided a chance to conduct a real interview or focus group discussion to gather information about the users. The users could be our peers. Therefore we can get a real experience of creating a persona as well as conduct real data collection. Besides that, in reality, we have to interview our user in order to provide something based on their needs.
I chose week 6 about openness as the most interesting topic as I learn more about open data, open education, open source and open access. The guest lecturer Ginny Barbour was awesome by delivering a beneficial lecture on open access. I know it is quite hard to encourage people in my organisation (university) to create an open access. But, I believe that by intensive communication we can create an open access for the research and publications in our university.
I found that open education was also a good topic. Free online courses such as MOOCs really give a beneficial and good chance for us to increase our skills on certain topics. However, I hope I could find more course topics of Information management or information science or information literacy on that list of course topics.
I also found that the play activities from week 6 were the most challenging. I wish I could have chosen Infographic as my play activity but I could not do it because I did not have much time available. However, I will learn how to do it later on. I can revisit the course materials in week 6 and find and find a video from Kate Davis about how to create Infographic. Further, I can read my peers blog (especially those who completed infographic play activities). Because, I believe that infographic is an effective tool for delivering information to be understandable by the people.
The least favourite topics was in week 4: Technology or internet is everywhere as in reality we know that actually the internet is not everywhere. Not all people have access to the internet due to lack of internet connection, or maybe not knowing how to use it. And, the discussion on why organisation must tracking their employee was just ridiculous and does not make sense for me. Because how the organisation just want to hire healthy people. I think it will give a huge gap on the people with high capability but not too healthy.
The most challenging topic was on week 10: Technology in practice. I found it challenging as I learned more about gamification and makerspace, two topics that totally were new for me. I chose the game option as I would like to challenge myself to play games and (to prove myself that game play is not always useless) and understand how games can be applied in an educational context. It was fun, competitive, and I felt under pressure for certain challenges but l learned that gamification is not only about collecting badges and points. It is more about how to design a game to deliver a beneficial outcome for the students and make them more engaged with the course. And I got a prize as I came second on the leader board.
The key learning for me in this unit is how as an information professional I can learn and understand a variety use of technologies and choose which one is appropriate to deliver a better information service. Additionally, I also have learnt that:
- Blogging is one way to deliver and communicate your knowledge with other information professionals. Throughout this semester, I found that blogging was very useful for me to enrich my knowledge of certain topics as well as share my knowledge with others. Reading my peers’ blogs and comments have made me understand that everyone has different preference and experience in using technologies either for their personal or professional life. However, I realise that my weaknesses were I did not read the blog posts and provided comments frequently or in regular time. Unable to manage my time well was the main reason. But, I hope in the future, I can spend time (maybe one to two hours per day) to read a blog which relevant to my profession. Further, I Hope I can continue this good beneficial practice of blogging by starting blogging this June.
- I have learnt how to use Microsoft Power Point to create a poster. I realise that sometimes I don’t have to use a complicated software to produce something like this.
- I use Twitter frequently now to keep connected with other information professionals
- I have also learnt how to conduct user research design by creating personas. Further, by doing assignment 3, I have learned how to propose an appropriate technology for an organisation to fulfil its needs as well as its users’ needs.
- I also learnt my strengths are I always read all materials on learning resources and I always try to find out literature to help me back up my statement. I do acknowledge my weaknesses are I am not good at using imaging software, I tend to hinder use new tools in playing activities as I know I could not complete it due to bad time management.
In conclusion, I have completely enjoyed IFN612. The multitude of learning resources, and personal engagement with peers and the lecturer have helped me to understand the topics and exchange knowledge. I realise that as an information professional I could not escape from technologies. This unit has helped me to understand to control and choose what technologies are appropriate with my needs and my profession as well as the needs of my organisations. Thank you to our great lecturer team Kathleen and Katya for delivering this course in such a pleasurable way but still focusing on the unit’s outcome.
Image references (in order of appearances on blog post)
Expectations by Magenta Jefferson https://www.flickr.com/photos/magentadevinna/11611781756/
IFN612 unit online from https://www.qut.edu.au/study/structures/study-plan-data?unit-id=60192
i3-learning environment by i3-Group Holding NV https://www.flickr.com/photos/vanerumgroup/14745088773/
The topic of the next weekly challenge is AGAIN by Crap Mariner https://www.flickr.com/photos/isfullofcrap/12719841605/
Learning is Hanging Out by Alan Levine https://www.flickr.com/photos/cogdog/15905754123/