Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Post-course reflection: Blogging course for Library Association of Singapore (Session 1)

I made a mental note of the following from this afternoon's session:
  1. It's no joke lugging around over 2Kg worth of computer hardware (i.e. Macbook Pro)
  2. Especially when you carry the darn bag for the entire day, only to find that you can't use it at the training venue
  3. I owe Siva coffee
  4. I need to inject more hands-on activity for the next session on 4th August

NLB Academy - LAS Blog Course 19 Jul 06Regarding 1 & 2, I saw Siva using his Macbook Pro at the WRL talk last Saturday and I thought, "Hey, I should try that today too!"

Alas, overconfidence got the better of me. Normally I make a point to do a site recce but this time I thought I could skip that part as I was familiar with the training venue. I thought there should not be a problem with connecting the Mac to the projector. Afterall, I saw how Siva did it.

But for some reason, it didn't work. In desperation, I called Siva on the mobile. After I explained why I called him, I half expected him to say, "Look man, I'm busy now. I ain't tech support", but he didn't. He patiently advised me on the settings (which I did correctly), and maybe I should try rebooting (still didn't work). The "tech support" session lasted maybe 2minutes, but still I owe him coffee.

I was happy with how the session went. As I learnt from my stint with the blog course in South Africa early this year, each participant would come with different expectations of what they wanted from the session, and different comfort levels wrt understanding IT concepts. Still, judging from the feedback forms that the LAS organising committee showed me at the end of the day, majority of participants were happy with how things went.

Half the class managed to sign up for Bloglines and learnt how to subscribe and unsubscribe feeds. We spent an hour going through the basics of creating and managing a blog with Then last hour we covered Flickr, Technorati, and a quick overview podcasting (some of them enjoyed this podcast - the one on "Customer Service").

I can certainly improve quite a few things in delivering the training. Which was why I made a mental note for item 4 -- to give the participants more meaningful activities to do.

Would've preferred to do this as a full-day course rather than a 3-hour session. I think at one point I might have droned on too long... I tend to do that when I'm enthused about a point I'm making. Ok, on second thought, I think they are better off with a 3-hour session! LOL

Need to think of how to do even better for the 2nd run on 4th August. Even though I'm doing this course for free, I feel pressured to do a good an excellent job. Maybe because I'm a perfectionist. Or I feel bad when people make time to attend a course and they don't get the most from it. I don't know.

Anyway, I'll certainly take the advice of this participant (we tried registering for and those who used their office email addresses weren't able to access the confirmation email sent to their office accounts).

Will also employ the Post-It notes idea from Kevin (thanks buddy, it was an excellent way to explain concept of tagging and relating it to what librarians are familiar with).

This time the course happened, unlike the last time. In fact, 100% signup I was told, for this run (25 people) and LAS asked for a second session. This interest is all good for the library scene here, in my opinion.

(p.s. Discovered another Singapore Liblogarian! Thanks, Dexterine, for your impromptu assistance this afternoon.)

Technorati Tags: Blog Workshop, Blog Course


  1. Hey was glad to help, no worries. Have posted to me@n to find out if anyone has any tricks to share with us.

    It's not that heavy lah, I can still cycle about with it:
    You've been moving about too lightly-laden. Must get your MBP out more!

    Love that the courses are well subscribed.

  2. Anonymous12:57 pm

    Hi Ivan!!!
    Heard that your course on the 19th was very good....I'm waiting with anticipation for the one on the 4th.... :)....great to read that there maybe more hands on activity....


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