Lesson Six: Designing an
Unit or Online Course
Revisiting Project-based Learning Activity
Pulling together a workable online
In this lesson, you'll expand your knowledge about Webquest activity formats, templates, and archives of existing Webquest activities with emphasis on assessment measures. You'll identify how to link short term activity units together to create a complete online course.
In this lesson, you will become aware of additional extensive resources on project-based learning formats and online course authoring tutorials.
In this lesson you will create a draft course design to help you identify those areas of online teaching to which you need to give more thought and exploration.
Exploring Other Models and Tutorials for Creating Project-Based Learning (PBL) Activities
A good project-based learning activity incorporates the same features as a good online course. The more activities you review, the broader your understanding will be for your design options, for both PBL activities and whole online courses. Webquest activities vary from short term, 1-3 class periods, to long term, 4-6 weeks. The difference is just a matter of scale and timeline.
When you identify the components of a good webquest activity, you can view them as potential components of a good online course. The Webquest tutorials and models below are well developed and offer you a fresh approach to the concepts presented elsewhere in this course. Cyberfair http://www.gsh.org and Thinkquest http://www.thinkquest.org are similar exemplary models. Read and explore these important models at http://lone-eagles.com/capacity.htm and then explore directories of other PBL models at http://lone-eagles.com/projects_tour.htm Search for "project-based learning" resources (include the quotes) to see how many great new resources are steadily appearing!
Explore the new listing for project-based learning resources at http://lone-eagles.com/pbl.htm .
Webquests were introduced in the strongly recommended course "Making the Best Use of Internet Resources for K-12 Instruction." You're welcome to revisit that lesson: http://lone-eagles.com/asdnl5.htm
Webquests are a format for an online activity for either the traditional classroom, or the online classroom, which involves both individual research and creation of a group report or product. Webquests can be short term, 1-3 class periods, or longer term, 3-4 weeks. Extensive training materials exist for creating Webquest activities, as well as many collections of Webquest activities which are 'classroom-ready.' The more you learn about Webquests, the more approaches you'll discover regarding online activity designs and assessment strategies. An online class could be considered as a sequence of variable length Webquest activities.
Go to the Webquest homepage http://webquest.sdsu.edu/ and explore the "Collections" http://webquest.sdsu.edu/webquest_collections.htm and "Training" resources. Note that at the bottom of the Webquest homepage are links to related resource sites which are part of a web ring. Explore how all these sites share links to each other in a way that makes it easy for the teacher to find similar resources. At http://webring.org you'll find topical listings of other web rings which are interconnected. Spend time getting to know what resources are available to you through the web rings site!
Kathy Schrock's site has great webquest resources,
which you're asked to explore as a resource. View her Webquest
Slide Show at: http://school.discovery.com/schrockguide/webquest/wqsl1.html
Explore the many tutorials:
Using the Teacher's Webquest template create a very simple webquest activity and email it to your Instructor.
All Webquest Templates are at :
Here's the easiest template which you can also find by clicking on the first template image in the URL above: http://webquest.sdsu.edu/templates/lesson-template1.htm
Just save and edit this template web page to create your own simple
WebQuest within the time provided!
(one and a half hours)
An Advanced Option
Utilizing the vast resources of the Internet in your instruction will likely make your web-based curriculum that much more effective and exciting. Many resources are copyright free and in lesson two you experimented with a single search phrase that will yield vast numbers of existing tutorials, lessons, and courses on nearly any topic. In lesson task 8.2 of this course are links to archives of 'learning objects' which you might like to jump ahead and review as a source for content for your webquest for this lesson.
Lesson Feedback: Optional, but much appreciated.
You're invited to privately email your instructor:
1. What areas, if any, did you have trouble with during this lesson?
2. What questions remain now that you've finished this lesson?
3. Approximately how much time did you devote to this lesson?
4. What improvements would you like to suggest?