7. Simplicity. Keep things simple. One place for all memos. One place to post assignments. Too many tools and multiple processes can overwhelm new students. The student should not spend too much time learning tools, especially at the expense of content and interaction.
This simple rule from and old post of GSiemens regarding teaching online goes directly to my heart. As much as I love to explore new things, I want things to work and be simple (may be I’ve been around the Mac for too long, so I’m an heir of Steve Jobs on that sense). What I hate (and, I think, everyone) is being close to a deadline and trying desperately to figure out how to do some thing with the new tool.
It is not that I run away from new things; I just care to much about the part clearly expressed in Siemens’ last word, above: “at the expense of content and interaction”. I can figure out lots of technical things, time allowing. I can play with (some) DOS, Unix and variants, written HTML; I even did some programming a long time ago. But I now, definitely, care much more about content and refection over it than the secondary technical things. Every hobby as a proper age; mine is set for the time being.