Talk:Course Content Policies

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Key Questions to Resolve

Should OWEA produce, compile, and/or maintain curricula?
Virginia DeBolt: I think the group should compile curricula. The production and maintenance should happen outside of the W3C group structure.
Mark DuBois: I recommend we consider some sort of "seal of approval" for curricula. Just listing them does not indicate how useful/ current, etc. the are.
Chris Mills: Not produce, as tat would duplicate effort, but compile and maintain lists of the best stuff to go to? Yes. Of course, these lists would need to be carefully structured and not too unwieldy, otherwise they would overwhelm people.
Terry Morris: I agree that the group should compile curricula. I'm not so sure a "seal of approval" is needed — there will most likely be great and not-so-great aspects to almost any curricula. Perhaps listing compiled curricula with a brief comment/description (including pros, cons, unique aspects, etc.) could be helpful to educators.
Dave McFarland: I think a first step is to develop a list of OWEA principles to guide curriculum development. For example, is "promoting the use of Web standards in the Web industry" our focus, or "preparing students for successful entry into the Web industry" the focus? The two aren't always the same, and I think we need to be clear from the outset what we believe the ultimate goals of a Web curriculum should be. (Aside: Wikis have a "discussion" tab for each page. That's usually where discussion about page content goes. The discussion for this page is at I propose moving all these discussion points over to that page, and keep the actual content, the "Editing Course Content Policies" on this page.)
If so who contributes content, and what is the process followed for submission?
Chris Mills: To have your content linked to in our resources, you need to send it to us and have it vetted for quality, best practices, etc. We should also keep a list of stuff we haven't get got included, but would like to have included. So people interested in contributing something can look at the list and see what we are currently missing.
Mark DuBois: Who will be doing the actual review? For example, I have been doing a similar activity (reviewing for WOW Academy certification) for several years and it is a complex and thankless job. My point is that if someone does step up to actualy do the review, they will likely be swamped initially. What incentives will exist to keep one or more individuals from being burned out in a short time?
What common structure and format should be followed to organize educational materials?
Chris Mills: Ummmm, web standards ;-)
Terry Morris: Go, web standards!
Brainstorming some ideas for organizing educational materials — the InterAct course titles? a list of topics (CSS, Design, (X)HTML, etc.)? Other ideas?
Do you think it would also be useful to organize (or be searchable by) type of activity within topics, such as projects, discussion questions, coding assignments, etc.?
Jeffrey Brown: Entering curricula into a storage system will be tedious, monotonous work that comes in waves of 100 items at a time, plus many institutions will likely resist vetting if it involves making their curricula public. At the same time, there needs to be a way to search for curricula materials. What if we store the course title, description, and learner compentencies. Those things will tell us everything about the course an educator would want to know right?
Mark DuBois: I agree with web standards, but there may well be a number of technologies outside of that umbrella which we may wish to include (cf. Flash and Silverlight already mentioned elsewhere).
What types of content would be allowed in OWEA curricula?
  • Front-end engineering only (concepts and technologies within the W3C)?
  • Do we include user science, design, etc?
  • How do we handle proprietary content such as Flash, Silver Light, etc?

Chris Mills: I think front end, backend, and user science type stuff should all be included. again, think pragmatic - if people are gonna need to know it in the sphere of web design and development, then it should be in. We should also cover the proprietary stuff, but in the context of "here is how to use it alongside web standards responsibly, and make it adhere to the same best practices as web standards usage should." A slightly more glass-half empty way to look at it is "Here is how to do the least harm with it." ;-)
Terry Morris: Does the W3C have a policy on this that we need to be aware of? If not, ditto what Chris said. :-) Otherwise, we may need to review and adjust our scope accordingly.