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Governance by enthusiasm

The Facilitating Learning Online project is guided by a group called FLO Enthusiasts. This includes educators who have followed the path to becoming a FLO facilitator. We define ourselves as:

A group that exists to guide FLO open educational resources through the process of widespread adoption while maintaining integrity of the program

Rachel

In June, 2017 this group gathered together to envision the next steps for FLO. The session objectives were emergent, however the following goals and intended outcomes informed our work for the day:

Goals

  • Strengthen/lengthen Facilitator Development (facilitators of FLO courses)
  • Encourage institutions to adopt FLO, and to share opportunities and resources with each other – sharing agreements?
  • Provide a centralized location to:
    • Submit and advertise all institutions’ offerings
    • Find a facilitator to facilitate a FLO course, or provide mentorship for the process
  • Support the Facilitator Development Community of Practice (FD-CoP)

Intended Outcomes

  • Define the min specs of FLO to be clear about what makes it unique and what needs to stay intact in order to be called “FLO”
  • Decide where the master copy of FLO should sit and if one entity should maintain its resources, including FDO
  • Determine concrete ways to support institutions to adopt FLO to help spread it
  • Find a way to track revisions to FLO
  • Initially explore sharing across institutions

Beth Cougler BlomSylvia Riessner, and Sylvia Currie were the facilitators of the facilitators 🙂 and used a variety of facilitation techniques (purpose to practice, low-tech social network, cover story, min specs). Twelve enthusiasts contributed to the process and outcomes for the day, resulting in a set of recommendations. See Sylvia Riessner’s excellent Flexing Facilitation Muscles article that summarizes each step.

Recommendations

Recommendations

BCcampus will provide infrastructure and support in the following ways:

  • Maintain and host course open resources
  • Establish and coordinate a 2-year revision cycle, with minor revisions tracked in the CoP
  • Make courses and outcome resources available for download
  • Work with FLO facilitators to publish case studies (using templates) that explain proposed changes to FLO content and facilitation
  • Prepare and mentor FLO facilitators
    • Continue the Facilitator Development Online course
    • Host and steward the Facilitator Development CoP
  • Coordinate schedules and resources across institutions
    • List available facilitators and mentors
    • Maintain a centralized calendar of courses
    • Report on status of offerings, development and facilitation by institutions
  • Create and publish FLO information packages
    • Adoption Guide
    • Facilitation Guide
    • Promotional materials
  • Design and produce FLO logos, branding, course graphic collections
  • Market FLO
    • Through mailing lists, social media channels
    • Through direct communication to VP Academics
  • Enable FLO Enthusiasts to continue by exploring support options such as
    • Release time for institutional representative
    • Funds for annual gathering
  • Discontinue offering FLO courses and focus on facilitator support and adoption

BC Post-Secondary Institutions/Organizations will:

  • Host and implement FLO family courses
  • Designate a “FLO Enthusiast”
  • Indicate whether registration is available to individuals outside the institution

FLO Enthusiasts will:

  • Plan and participate in Facilitator Development Community of Practice activities
  • Assist with research and reporting on FLO activities
  • Promote FLO within their institutions
  • Facilitate and mentor future facilitators
  • Assist with coordination of course implementation at home institutions
  • Act as a gatekeeper – maintain integrity of FLO across iterations at own institution
  • Commit to updating a centralized calendar of offerings

The Facilitator Development CoP “enthusiast group” will:

  • Decide how to move forward/coordinate
  • Organize scheduled meet ups and learning events
  • Share responsibilities for the CoP space

Anyone is welcome to use and modify the FLO courses. However, in order to remain part of the FLO project, the course design and implementation will:

  • Be evidence based
  • Include a reflective practice component
  • Engage all participants in the experience of facilitating an activity
  • Offer instructor and peer feedback on each learner’s facilitation
  • Provide a safe and encouraging learning environment
  • Continue to be openly licensed

Additional qualities and actions are identified as ideal, but not essential. The course design and implementation will:

  • Create opportunities to experience working in teams
  • Encourage exploration of a variety of online tools
  • Issue certificates of completion
  • Courses remain available to learners / or takeaway processes are implemented
  • Integrate a mentorship model for preparing facilitators
This list is comprehensive and a more than a little bit intimidating! As a community of enthusiasts with limited time and funds available, we promise to do our best to carry out these recommendations.