Saturday, May 21, 2011

Using Goalscape in the Classroom

I had a chance just this week to reconnect with Richard Parslow, the developer of Goalscape, a unique and innovative goal setting and planning tool for the Mac and Windows computers-who shared with me some of the new development that are taking place. Richard talked about Goalscape Connect their new online tool to create goalscapes when collaborating and working with teams. To access Goalscape Connect all you need is a browser and a connection to the internet and a Goalscape account. With an account you can begin to create a new goalscape to help you visualize your goals and subgoals. Goalscape lets you set up a central goal in the center of circle with your subgoals fanning out around the central point. With Goalscape, it is very easy to see your progress and add notes and resources to each goal and subgoal. One of the key points of using Goalscape is that you can rate the level of importance of each goal and subgoal and begin to realize that if you spend more time on one goal you have less time to address another. Once your goalscape is set up you can quickly get an overview of your progress and see what needs to be done.

As humans we are all goal driven and being able to concisely articulate our goals helps us to know how and where we are going. I just started back teaching an advanced graduate course in assistive technology and asked my students to use Goalscape Connect to chart their own goals for the course. Last week I introduced them to Goalscape Connect and we did some hands on work with it. For their assignment, I asked them to use Goalscape to develop their goals for the course to help guide their learning. Understanding the principles of Universal Design for Learning (multiple means of engagement) it is important even for adult learners to have them to identity their own learning goals and objectives to help drive their learning. This week I will get a chance to see what they have accomplished with Goalscape Connect and give them the opportunity to drive their own learning. What can be more motivating that that?

As an extra treat, I have invited Richard Parslow to speak to my class via Skype to share his insights for developing Goalscape- I for one am looking forward to that. If you would like to click here for a trial of Goalscape

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