Select Page

ETEC 510

Design of Technology Supported Learning Environments (core)


Final Grade: A

Class Average: 89%

Extemporaneous Comments

Although most of the discussion forums in the MET courses were text-based, many of my contributions were made in video or audio format, as presented below in the audio player.  Please note that these comments are mainly unscripted. The references were added later, after reflecting on the comments.


This course is an online seminar examining research, and exemplary media tools, as these inform the design of technology-mediated environments. We will explore constructivist and sociocultural theories of mind, learning and instruction and their significance for the design of educational technologies and environments. Students will design a technology-supported learning environment.

A variety of readings have been compiled for this course. All will be available online through the course website.



  • Module 1: Course Introduction
  • Module 2: Education, by Design
  • Module 3: Constructivist Learning Environments: Designs for Thinking
  • Module 4: Designs for Serious Play
  • Module 5: Designs for e-Learning Environments
  • Module 6: Learning 2.0 – Designing Educational Futures, Now


  1. Participants will discuss different theories of learning and examine models of design and educational media.
  2. Participants will learn to identify relevant affordances of educational media, and to think analytically and critically about pedagogical models and related designs.
  3. Participants will be immersed in a broad and significant field of academic knowledge pertaining to the design of technology-supported educational spaces.
  4. Participants will discuss a wide range of formal and informal learning environments, including games, e-learning, computer-supported collaborative learning, instructional software, and social networking sites.
  5. Participants will learn to analyze learning situations and identify associated technology-related design challenges.
  6. Participants will develop skills in the design of educational media, and the integration of design thinking with scholarship in education.


  • Participation in online discussion forum (25%)
  • Design Project Proposal (10%)
  • Design Project (40%)
  • Contributions to Design Wiki (25%)



Jeff Miller, MA (University of British Columbia) is a course designer, project manager, and the MET coordinator within the Distance Education and Technology office at UBC. He assisted in developing the business and program plan for the MET program and coordinates the development and delivery of MET courses in Distance Education and Technology. He has been the instructional designer for ETEC 510, ETEC 520, ETEC 522 and ETEC 540 and has instructed ETEC 510, ETEC 520, and ETEC 540. Jeff is co-recipient (with Teresa Dobson) of the 2004 British Columbia Innovation Award in Educational Technology for ETEC 540. Jeff has developed online and mixed mode courses in a variety of disciplines, as well as whole programs of study at a distance in Canada and internationally. He has designed commercial educational CD-ROMs and multimedia, and provided faculty development workshops in pedagogy, technology, and collaborative learning at universities in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. He is recipient of an Award of Merit (2002) from the Association for Media and Technology in Education in Canada for the design of the Pinel Biopsychology CD-ROM. His research interests include instructional design, collaborative learning, reusable media, multimedia, Marshall McLuhan and Walter Benjamin. Recent articles are published in Text Technology and Computing in the Humanities Working Papers.


Tap or click to see references for some of the "Extemporaneous Comments"


Wiki Page on Google+ Hangouts and Drive

Course: ETEC 510 - Design of Technology Supported Learning Environments (core)



The following video is a tour of my wiki page and less than 90 seconds in length:

You can visit the actual wiki page by clicking here. (The page is hosted at UBC and sometimes gets updated by other students.)

Reflection on Starting a Wiki Page

Inner Conflict

Starting this wiki page created quite an inner conflict.  As someone who had always used either WordPress or a WYSIWYG editor for web design,  I felt that having to re-learn some basic html coding skills was regressive and a waste of precious time.  (Unfortunately, wiki sites rely heavily on html.)

On the other hand, I was elated to be dealing with two of my favourite collaboration tools, Google Drive and Google+ Hangouts.  I had actually already started using them with my students before beginning on the MET Program, so it was encouraging to be learning about the constructivist theory that supports the collaboration and group activities that these tools afford to anyone with a Gmail account.

To make the assignment even more challenging, our instructor pointed out that it was important to do the research and provide a solid written foundation so that future MET students who have similar interests could work on the same page without having to delete everything because the original author had not been accurate.

Because I knew that someone else could easily revise the entire wiki page, I made a quick video tour of it shortly after completing it. It has been more than two years since it was finished and, when I checked it out last week, things hadn’t changed much. That means one of two things:  either I did a reasonably solid job on the Google Drive / Google+ Hangouts wiki page or perhaps folks are just not interested in those apps any more. 

Of the one or two additions that have been made to the page, I only wish that the alignment of the ‘Transmediation‘ video was correct. I see this as not so much the fault of the student who added it, but as a major weakness with wiki sites in general: the requirement for wiki authors to know how to code in html is an unnecessary obstacle that should be removed. Perhaps another platform will soon emerge to replace the outdated html wikis and create new possibilities for more collaborative authors to share their knowledge in a modern, unimpeded web space. One can only hope.


Synchronous and Asynchronous Collaboration with Google Drive

Course: ETEC 510 - Design of Technology Supported Learning Environments (core)


As part of the Google Drive and Google+ Hangout wiki page that I authored for ETEC510, I included this video that uses a split screen to demonstrate how collaboration is such a powerful affordance in Google Drive. This video was targeted to other educators and includes a few tips on commenting and how to monitor students’ participation through the “revision history” function. Since producing this video in 2013, it is gratifying to note that Google has improved the interface and provided even more collaborative affordances.

Tap or click here to check out the references for the above artifact and reflection.


Real Life Examples of Linking Theory to Practice:

The following blurbs will connect you to current examples of linking theory to practice.

More About Gary

additional information about Gary’s background & current practice

Reflections on HYU Practice

ongoing initiatives to support learners and faculty at Hanyang University

Overview of Current Sites

e-learning spaces that Gary currently uses in professional practice

Links to Old Spaces

discontinued spaces that trace Gary’s online footprint back to 2001

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.