Courses and Workshops: What’s the Difference?
ACM CHI offers both courses and workshops. When deciding whether to offer a workshop or a course, consider the following table:
Instructor (or several instructors) as expert(s), able to communicate knowledge effectively with students at a specified level (beginners to advanced). The instructors are expected to anticipate a variety of engagement methods, in the proposal for a course.
Takes responsibility for creating new knowledge or insights along with a group of knowledgeable peers; Facilitates interactive session that fosters knowledge creation, sharing and dissemination
Learners on a new topic. These learners are possibly experts in unrelated topics or topics not directly addressed in this activity. Learners are typically not asked to submit qualifications before enrolling in courses.
Knowledgeable peers and experts in related topics. Participants are typically asked to provide a position paper or show related work to qualify for entry. Workshop participants are selected by the organizers of a workshop.
Specific learning objectives appropriate to the course topic and anticipated student level.
Share knowledge and extend knowledge on a specific topic (which may be covered in other venues at CHI2017).
Network and build community around the topic of interest (e.g. identify potential contributors for future collaborations)
Topics are open to specific technologies, methodologies, devices, including topics that may be part of university courses or those that will help newcomers more rapidly integrate into the CHI community.
Course topics are often quick ways for learners to get up to speed on “state of the art.”
Topics often cross boundaries, look at emerging topics and fields or attempt to build alliances with organizations beyond CHI.
Workshop topics are often beyond “state of the art.”
A 80 minute session = 1 unit. Typical courses are 1 – 3 units, but up to 4 are possible. Courses are convened during the conference schedule
Workshops happen as pre-conference sessions, typically a full-day on the weekend prior to the formal start of the conference.
A workshop on prototyping (for example) might encourage sharing of a variety of prototyping tools and methods among people who are accustomed to using one or more of the tools already. The goal of such a workshop would be to clarify issues related to methods and tools, output and success metrics, and additional goals that are appropriate to discussions among experts to extend best practices or create new understandings and practices.
A course on prototyping would introduce the purposes of prototyping, review a selection of prototyping tools and the resultant prototypes. It might discuss how the results would be useful for which types of testing, or shared with a development team.