Tuesday, May 31, 2011

From Tentative Twitter Tester to Timely Talkative Tweeter - 3 stages, 3 years

Social -> News -> Professional; 
Randomly -> Weekly -> Daily
"Social Use – ... started following a few friends and would update my status via the Twitter... Facebook was a better way...had trouble understanding some tweets because I wasn’t familiar with the Twitter language.
"News/Information – Two years ago, I began following news information outlet tweets such as ABC, NBC, CNN, ... started to learn how to retweet and direct message ... [and use] Twitter search functions... weekly 
"Industry/Professional – a year ago, the “game-changer” ...was ...social networking application such asTweetDeck or Seesmic. The software made it easier... also began using searches more frequently and effectively ... hashtags ... began following industry leaders in education and business often sharing ideas and information with peers during professional conferences."
- From "Using Twitter to Teach, Part One – My Twitter Evolution" by Arturo Ozuna,

Image is drawing of 2 pawns on optical illusion pathway
By Icey (Own work, created in Inkscape.) [GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Helping Students Learn w Videos, Humor

Recommendations from Lucy MacDonald via email; she provides http://www.howtostudy.org

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Accelerating Accumulation: Knowledge, Wisdom, Selectivity, Guidance. Pay for privilege of NOT receiving info

 #vwwt2000 Predctn2 
"The accumulation of information and knowledge will continue to accelerate. Respect and reward for conveyed wisdom, knowledgeable selectivity, and thoughtful guidance will grow. People will pay a premium for services that pre-sift information; i.e., for the privilege of NOT receiving so much information or communication. Learners with good information tools at home or in school will become less dependent on teachers for access to information; but more dependent on them for perspective, interpretation, analysis, motivation, and direction."
- 2nd of 20 predictions from "A New Vision Worth Working Toward: Connected Education and Collaborative Change," Steven W. Gilbert, 2000-2006, First version published via AAHESGIT listserv January, 2000; PDF of full article

Image: Photo of "Residents sift through debris in California"
By Andrea Booher (This image is from the FEMA Photo Library.) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

ASK How RESPOND to students’ course evals? BEFORE ask Best time read them?

prfhckr ow.ly/50dPj fridaylive tlt.gs/frlvfacstudcollab
"Best time?" is secondary question. 
 First question is "How can faculty respond usefully to students' conscientious course evaluations?" I.e., demonstrate to students that their constructive responses to course evaluation requests will be treated respectfully and contribute to course improvements. 
See transcript, recording of "Holy ****, you're actually listening to me:
Student-Faculty Collaboration to Improve Courses"
This session ended with discussion of need for trust, respect between faculty and students! Fridaylive session 5/20/2011 http://tlt.gs/frlvfacstudcollab
Image:  Photo of leader speaking harshly to marine trainees 
By John Kennicutt, U.S. Marine Corps (http://www.marines.mil; VRIN: 090708-M-9842K-008) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Monday, May 23, 2011

Safest Prediction re Educ Use of Info Tech - from Jan, 2000:

Tech changes fast, human nature does not. #vwwt2000 predctn1

"In the next decade at least one major new trend in the educational use of information technology will NOT have been predicted by anyone highly respected in fields closely related to education or technology. Technology can change quickly and unpredictably, even if human nature cannot."

- 1st of 20 predictions from "A New Vision Worth Working Toward:  Connected Education and
Collaborative Change," Steven W. Gilbert, 2000-2006, First version published via AAHESGIT listserv January, 2000; PDF of full article

By MichiganArchaeologist (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

"Holy ****, you're actually listening to me" Student-faculty collaboration to improve courses

tlt.gs/frlv Free Fri 5/20 2pmEDT Successful in several courses over several years at Elon University: Faculty invite students to help improve next offering of course.  More...

Collaboration initiated by experienced faculty who believe students who recently took a course were not learning something important - not learning it easily or well enough. 1 faculty + a few students per course, all volunteers, meet 6-8 times before course begins again.  Students encouraged to share expertise on student experience, attitudes.  Faculty encouraged to share expertise in subject, course, teaching.  

Students read work of previous students, observe current class, provide peer view of student learning;  privacy, confidentiality honored.
Students like being listened to by faculty:  "Holy ****, you're actually listening to me" 

Most faculty participating are recognized as teaching "good" courses, not "broken" courses.
Collaborations organized and facilitated by Director of Center for Advancement of Teaching and Learning. 
Associate Professor and Director, Center for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Open Educ Digital Textbook Alternatives - Webinar Recording

Re "FlatWorldKnowledge" model youtu.be/zGCGJ-VbBEg Live April 12, 2011

Model:  Faculty "adopt" and "customize" digital version which is made accessible online for free to students.  Anyone can purchase other formats (print, audio) and other related materials.
Webinar title "SPOTLIGHT ON INNOVATION: Attacking High Text Costs While Improving Outcomes"
"The beauty of Flat World Knowledge is that there truly is no catch. You are welcome to read as many textbooks free online as you like. But you might be willing, given that the price is right, to purchase other formats like print, audio, printable PDFs, and study aids that make learning efficient, and better suit your lifestyle and personal preferences." - From Student Frequently Asked Questions | Flat World Knowledge

Monday, May 16, 2011

Perfection: Take away or add? Painful course integrity decisions: anupholsteraphobia?

tlt.gs/profhacker2011515  tlt.gs/perfection tlt.gs/anupholsteraphobia
"Anupholsteraphobia":  the fear of not covering the material
"As long as the overall integrity of the season course is maintained, it’s ok to let some plans go." ... "One of the advantages of having a fixed endpoint is that sometimes you have to give things up. Not everything can be re-scheduled–and not everything necessarily needs to." -from "ProfHacker" in Chronicle of Higher Ed. 5/15/2011  
"Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." -- Antoine de Saint-Exupery From The Quotations Page
And Gracie Allen "Always removed a piece of jewelery when going out so she wouldn't be 'overdressed'"  -- Wikipedia entry about Gracie Allen

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Want a little hyperbole w breakfast today? "LMS...linchpin of ...teaching and learning"

"The LMS [Learning Management System, e.g., Blackboard] serves as the linchpin of an institution’s teaching and learning enterprise," Abstract    7 Things You Should Know About LMS Evaluation (ID: ELI7072) , EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (05/11/2011)   
Really?  This article provides a useful intro to REconsidering the options available for institution-wide commitment to a LMS.  The article would be even more useful if it explained 

  • how proliferating free Web-based alternatives are already being used by many faculty members and students instead of - or in conjunction with - the institutionally-provided LMS
  • how decisions about LMS selection, integration, support, and policy are made
  • how faculty members and students could be more effectively involved in those decisions
For more, see the entire article... here are 2 more excerpts:
" Not all faculty members embrace the notion of an LMS

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

"When One Person's Tech Treasure Is Another's Trash" - Duh

Proud of INABILITY to help students use wikis effectively? Blame technology? Ben Gose, Chronicle of Higher Ed, May 8, 2011. Article ignores responsibility of faculty or students, blames technology.   

What about the importance of FACULTY providing guidance for students about effective, responsible use of technology for an assignment? What about the importance of SOMEONE providing guidance for faculty about effective, responsible use of technology within courses?

 "Tools that truly aid teaching aren't new to academe...But as consumer technology becomes ubiquitous, faculty members must sort through a bewildering array of options to figure out which new gadgets and software are worth keeping, and which belong in the reject pile. The process is all the more tricky because some corporate marketers and campus-based technology experts may be inclined to push the latest gizmo regardless of its effectiveness in the classroom." 
Article ends with:  
"But he's [Bauerlein] never been a fan of students who use their laptops in the classroom, and he hit a breaking point in the spring of 2009 in an American literature course while reading from The Awakening,the 1899 novella by Kate Chopin. As the protagonist, Edna Pontellier, was swimming deeper and deeper into the Gulf of Mexico, eventually to die, several students were looking down at their laptops.
"When she sinks beneath the waves, and they're smiling, something is not connecting," Mr. Bauerlein says."The next time he taught the course, in the spring of 2010, Mr. Bauerlein announced that he was banning laptops from the classroom. Half the class applauded."

PechaKucha 20X20 Presentation = 20images 20seconds each

Synchronous multi-tweets? Slideshow haikus? "restrictions as liberators"!

"PechaKucha 20x20 is a simple presentation format where you show 20 images, each for 20 seconds. The images forward automatically and you talk along to the images." see PechaKucha 20x20
Join TLT Group this Friday 5/13 2pm EDT "Twitter: Forbid It, Ignore It, or Use It? Insight and Implementation" Derek Bruff, Vanderbilt University - FridayLive!  Free

"If nothing else, I think Pecha Kucha is good training and good practice. Everyone should try Pecha Kucha; it's a good exercise for getting your story down even if you do not use the method exactly for your live talk in your work. It does not matter whether or not you can implement the Pecha Kucha "20x20 6:40" method exactly in your own company or school, but the spirit behind it and the concept of "restrictions as liberators" can be applied to most any presentation situation.
"The method makes going deep difficult. But if there is a good discussion after a Pecha Kucha type of presentation then it may work well even inside an organization. I can imagine having college students give this kind of presentation about their research followed by deeper questioning and probing by the instructor and class. Which would be more difficult for a student and a better indication of their knowledge: a 45 minute recycled and typical PowerPoint presentation, or a tight 6:40 presentation followed by 30 minutes of probing questions and discussion?

Monday, May 09, 2011

TwitterSpam? Hashtag Hijacking?

Help prevent/discourage inappropriate Tweeters! #FridayLive "No good deed goes unpunished?"  
Join TLT Group this Friday 5/13 2pm EDT "Twitter: Forbid It, Ignore It, or Use It? Insight and Implementation" Derek Bruff, Vanderbilt University - FridayLive!  Free

We've begun using #FridayLive as a Twi
tter hashtag to encourage people to exchange info before, during, and after our free weekly usually very interactive online sessions [Fridays, 2pm EDT tlt.gs/frlv].  This began as an experiment, and we're still exploring variations with the hope of increasing participation, increasing exchange of useful info, extending the benefits of the activity, learning how Twitter can enhance or distract, etc.  Apparently we have begun to "succeed" to the point of attracting a new kind of unwanted attention and participation:  i.e., some people have begun adding irrelevant, self-serving, or unrelated commercial Tweets to this stream.  Any recommendations about how we can continue our experiment while reducing this irritating element?

"To Twitter users, the hashtag isn't a new concept: attend an event and use a hashtag with any given word or phrase to organize tweets from the said event. For example, if you were at a big gathering of pizza lovers, you might use the hashtag <#pizza> in your Twitter stream. Fellow attendees of that event, along with observers, can follow discussions by simply following the #pizza designation. This practice comes in handy during large conferences, blogger events or live chats.
"Event organizers are taking hashtags to another level, in the form of displaying a large screen at an event, keeping track of the live hashtag conversation for all to see. ... In the last month, I've experienced or seen six separate examples of Hashtag Hijacking: where someone deliberately uses an event's hashtag to have their tweets (often disgruntled) show up and 'crash the party'. " From "The Latest in Digital Spam: Twitter Hashtag Hijacking" in The Daily Blagica

Friday, May 06, 2011

What are the courses like in Autodidact University? Who will register?

Has the line between "autodidacts" and others suddenly disappeared? Or is it just eroding?   Faster?  
Why are these questions important now when librarians, especially, have been providing resources to support a great many self-directed learners for a very long time?  Because the VARIETY, QUANTITY, and AVAILABILITY of these resources is changing faster and faster at the same time that educational institutions are under increasing economic and political pressure to change.   This confluence of conditions leads some to undervalue courses, teachers, and educational institutions.
But I believe that most human beings still need "courses" - teachers, group interaction, and external structure (schedule, etc.) for many important kinds of learning. 

The key question becomes (actually remains) "Who can learn what alone?"
See also tlt.gs/coursenotpizza
Join us this Friday 5/6 2pm EDT "Developing an Online Instructional Resources Website: What, Why, How"
Steve Gilbert  May, 2011  

Image source:  http://culturewav.es/system/images/549655/original/images.?1291828951

Monday, May 02, 2011

Who owns your online course if a colleague teaches it?

5/6 2pm EDT "Developing Online Instructional Resources Website"  Free Registration
"Will you pass this course along to be taught by another after you have developed it?"

How much of ANY course can you "pass along" to a colleague?  

Presenters: Lois Rosen, Deborah DeZure, and Eron Drake, Michigan State University
More...Instructor Considerations - Planning for Your Course | vuDAT (Virtual University Design & Technology)
In online courses, it is becoming especially important to distinguish among
  • online course materials and resources
  • online teaching and learning experiences
  • and complete courses.
The MIT OpenCourseWare project, one of the first and best known sources of "open education resources" distinguishes quite clearly between course resources and courses:  "MIT OpenCourseWare is intended as a publication of MIT course materials, not as an interactive experience with MIT faculty. MIT OpenCourseWare does not offer users the opportunity for direct contact with MIT faculty. It provides the content of - but is not a substitute for - an MIT education."  More... Also see: http://ocw.mit.edu  and tlt.gs/coursenotpizza

A Course is not a Pizza

Pizza & course materials can be delivered. Courses cannot. Even online. "Delivery" denies interaction.
In a course, learners have some meaningful access to at least one faculty member and that faculty member has some meaningful access to the learners, too.
Faculty and students who are misled to believe that in most courses, access to course materials is equivalent to course participation, end up delivering and receiving a diluted education.

The MIT OpenCourseWare project, one of the first and best known sources of "open education resources" distinguishes quite clearly between course resources and courses:  "MIT OpenCourseWare is intended as a publication of MIT course materials, not as an interactive experience with MIT faculty. MIT OpenCourseWare does not offer users the opportunity for direct contact with MIT faculty. It provides the content of - but is not a substitute for - an MIT education."  More... Also see: http://ocw.mit.edu

I'll bet that most MIT faculty believe that what they are doing today in their own courses is always a step beyond what they made available yesterday on the Web – and that they are right. Further, the valuable interaction between faculty members and students that may be instigated by use of the course materials changes constantly – and what happens in and subsequent to those interactions can powerfully alter the learning of those involved. The unique human relationships that may develop among faculty and students can also be an important dimension of the experience, and one that is not captured in course materials.