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  1. Leslie Bowman March 14, 2014 at 7:22 am |

    In my presentation last year at the VCU Online Learning Summit, I covered this very topic. My courses are “messy” as students discover new content on various topics (their choice of topics) and then use critical thinking skills to organize the sources according to relevance, and demonstrate relevance to the “real” world. In classes where I have full development autonomy, we don’t use a textbook at all. In my pre-designed courses, I modify the “discussion questions” (which are all pretty lame — course developers don’t have online teaching experience) to include more exploration and critical thinking. Thus we have “surprises” every week in all my courses. Students love it.

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