Monday, April 30, 2012

Sedentaristic courses shorten lifespan, reduce end-of-life quality? More for seated students than standing instructors?

"Stand Up for Fitness" for BETTER, longer life: 
DON'T sit more than 20 mins(?) without movement break
DO include multiple weekly sessions of aerobics + balance + weight training

That's my synthesis of recent advice accumulating from many sources - especially the article cited below. The questions that follow were prompted by that article and my search for more amusing, challenging, and memorable ways of communicating important information that is too often ignored.

  1. Doesn't this anti-sedentary advice conflict with our customary practice of requiring students, audiences, meeting attenders, restaurant patrons, bus passengers, etc. to remain seated for at least an hour per session? 
  2. Do traditional face-to-face classroom sessions shorten the lifespan and reduce end-of-life quality for students while ergonomically favoring instructors? 
  3. Do synchronous online course sessions shorten the lifespan and reduce end-of-life quality more equitably for students AND instructors? Same for asynchronous course activities?
  4. Is the 20 minute maximum for staying seated significantly more beneficial than a 50 or 60 minute maximum?  
  5. Why in the traditional classroom, is the instructor often the only one in the room permitted to stand or move about?  Both in the earliest grades and in higher education, we expect students to remain seated and mostly immobile until the instructor gives permission to depart.

- Excerpts, quotes, references from "Don't Just Sit There," by Gretchen Reynolds, The New York Times, "A version of this news analysis appeared in print on April 29, 2012, on page SR8 of the New York edition with the headline: Don't Just Sit There"
The full-text of Don't Just Sit There charmingly and clearly summarizes rapidly accumulating evidence

“1st try Building Community in Online Course” Archive, Slides, Polls, & Chat Transcript #TLTGFrLv 20120427

"Building a Sense of Community in an Online Environment: 
Boldly Going Where You May Not Have Before..."
Please find below:  Text chat transcript (including many links shared by FridayLive! participants) and links to other resources (slides, archives)

Theresa Beery
Professor, Director, Center for Education Research
University of Cincinnati, College of Nursing 

Dustin Shell  
Learning Consultant, TiER1 Performance Solutions 

Session Description
Building community online can be challenging. We “quickly” put a course online that we thought would be face-to-face with two major goals: (1) Create the sense of community that we have in the classroom and (2) facilitate students constructing knowledge together. Participants will share in discussion of using technology (blogs, wikis, video introductions, audio comments, a synchronous class) to build community. We will offer lessons learned: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Digital Archive
Full recording of this online session, which includes audio, slides, and text chat.  If you registered in advance for this FridayLive! session you will automatically receive a copy of the link to the archive at the same email address you used to register.  if you are a member of the TLT group you can always use this link to access the full collection of available archived sessions.
Slides Published Separately
Beery & Shell's presentation slides + Steve Gilbert's intro/close slides.  
Developed for this session.

Text Chat Transcript...

Friday, April 27, 2012

Polls for TLTGroup's FridayLive! “1st try Building Community in Online Course” 4/27 2pm FREE #TLTGFrLv

Polls available to be used for TLT Group's FridayLive! session 4/27 2pm  
Lesson learned from 1st try "Building a Sense of Community in an Online Environment: Boldly Going Where You May Not Have Before..." Register FREE to all - space limited

Poll Questions:  

Like Likert Scale

  • BCpre1  How much experience have you had with completely online courses?
  • BCpre2  How much experience have you had with hybrid (or blended or partially) online courses?
  • BC1 How important is "community" to the learning process within a course?
  • BC2  What are the greatest barriers when building community online?  In your own experience or from your observations
  • BC3  Which technologies are you most interested in learning more about today because of their potential for helping to build communty in online courses?

See below for questions with the item options included.

Test: Embeded YouTube video of Dustin Shell answering TLTGroup's Fundamental Questions 20120427 #TLTGFrLv

Dustin Shell, Learning Consultant, TiER1 Performance Solutions
The YouTube video embedded below was produced yesterday by Dustin Shell.  I'm delighted that he chose to use his iPhone & YouTube instead of the media and tools I recommended!  He reports via email:  "...did all of this on my iPhone using iMovie, a $5 app using the front-facing camera. Took me about 1 hour to record, edit, and publish…not including the revisions…"

Dustin was responding to the following request/invitation that I sent to  him earlier this week because he is co-presenting today 2pm ET April 27 FridayLive! on Lessons learned from 1st try: "Building a Sense of Community in an Online Environment: Boldly Going Where You May Not Have Before..." Register FREE to all - space limited    
pls consider answering our "Fundamental Questions" in the context of your session topic.
1. What do you most want to gain?
2. What do you most cherish and want not to lose?
if you have a few minutes, pls see and consider leaving a brief recorded answer to these 2 questions. i like to play such brief recordings before the sessions officially begin.Here's a more direct explanation of one easy way to record your answers:
Telephone Voicemail OptionTo do so, leave your answers as a single voicemail message at 301 744 TLTG = 301 744 8584

YouTube provided HTML embed code which I inserted in this Blog post 20120427 just below this line of text

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Lessons from 1st try Building Community in Online Course. TOMORROW 4/27 2pm FREE FridayLive! #TLTGFrLv

Lessons learned from 1st try:  "Building a Sense of Community in an Online Environment: Boldly Going Where You May Not Have Before..." TOMORROW FridayLive! 4/27 2pm ET #TLTGFrLv Register FREE to all - space limited  

Presenters: Theresa A. Beery, Nursing, University of Cincinnati, and Dustin Shell, College of Nursing, University of Cincinnati

Host:  Steve Gilbert, President, TLT Group

Building community online can be challenging. We “quickly” put a course online that we thought would be face-to-face with two major goals: (1) Create the sense of community that we have in the classroom and (2) facilitate students constructing knowledge together. Participants will share in discussion of using technology (blogs, wikis, video introductions, audio comments, a synchronous class) to build community. We will offer lessons learned: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Teacher’s recap & advice to online students re week's work: voice + email + word cloud [VIA FREE EASY APPS & LMS]

    Wordle: Program Outcomes Assessment
  1. Vocaroo + Wordle + e-mail + LMS
    "I sent an e-mail and posted the recording as an announcement in the course LMS along with a word cloud image from the script. I used Wordle for the word cloud.... I actually captured the image and included the image in the e-mail message that I sent.
    "voice recording summary [6 mins, recorded, produced, published using Vocaroofor my blended learning course. 

    Voice Recorder >>
    ..."My e-mail message was very short.
  2. "'Hi everyone, I thought I would try my hand at voice recording summary of this past week and the next steps to complete our unit on student learning. This link will take you there. Have a great weekend, Beth'

    "I developed a script before I did the voice recording. Developing what I was going to say was way harder than using Vocaroo."
    1. - Above excerpts from blog comments from Beth Dailey, April 24, 25, 2012

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Our colleges aren’t broken, our faculty not failures. With new tech we can provide (not merely deliver) better education for all who deserve it.

"If it Ain't Broke, Improve it: Thoughts on Engaging Education for Us All"  Steven W. Gilbert, 
Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks (JALN) Volume, Issue - Date: 
 Volume 8, Issue 1 - February 2004, Sloan-C, the Sloan Consortium, 15 pages. 

Excerpt from one-page summary of full 15-page text as PDF"Our colleges are not broken. Our faculty members and other academic professionals are not failures. tools and media are making it possible... to provide education that is much more than a delivery system for all those who deserve more."  [re:  course "delivery", see also "A course is not a pizza."]

One-Page Summary of "If It Ain't Broke, Improve It: thoughts on engaging education for us all" by Steven W. Gilbert, President, The TLT Group:

Monday, April 23, 2012

Simplest way to record and share audio via Internet?! Described 20120420 TLT Group’s FridayLive!

Vocaroo really is as simple as it seems - potentially VERY useful!  Anyone know more about the origin, originator, intentions?   

Last Friday I was talking with Beth Dailey about our FridayLive! session that afternoon and my hope that we could find some ideas to offer to our courageous presenterJennifer McCrickerd to help her prepare her first online course for this summer. We knew that Jennifer had already wisely decided to begin by limiting the kinds of technology she would use with her students. I knew that Beth has taught a variety of online and hybrid courses and has also helped many others make this transition, so I asked her what she would recommend as a VERY easy, simple way to allow an instructor and her students to exchange voice recordings online.

QR Code for SteveG Recording Produced by Vocaroo 20120423

Here's Beth's timely email response to me (April 20, 2012):
"...simplest way for students to provide an individual [audio] response to the instructor as part of an online course. She suggested Vocaroo   The students do not need to create an account to use it and they have the option of copying a URL into their assignment, e-mailing the link or even embedding the recording into the assignment.  You cannot respond with this service, but you could create your own recording and put it into the feedback when you grade." "...Penny Kuckkahn who gave me the suggestion"
I described Vocaroo as last week's LTA at the very beginning of the FridayLive! online session. See Result of my test recording made just a few minutes before we began: THIS WAS DONE WITHIN MY FIRST VISIT TO THE SITE - NO LOGIN, NO TRAINING!

More recent recording made using Vocaroo... trying to say something a little more meaningful...and trying to demonstrate some options avail from Vocaroo:
Using the "embed code" produced by Vocaroo (click on the arrow-like thing at the right end of this icon - the recording is less than 1 minute):

Voice Recorder >>
Note:  as of April 23, 2012, I couldn't find Apps for using Vocaroo with iPhone/iPad IOS or Android.  But I found a free download for a trial version of "Vocaroo Express" - I cannot recommend it yet because I couldn't easily find a flagrantly trustworthy source of the full version for which there would be a fee.I also found  "Vocaroo Assignments"  - but I'm not sure of the origin or intended use of these assignments, but you can decide for yourself.

IMAGE selected by Steve Gilbert 20120423
Photo of painting of "dog Nipper listening to the horn of an early phonograph during the winter of 1898. Victor Talking Machine Company began using the symbol in 1900, and Nipper joined the RCA family in 1929." artist Francis Barraud (1856-1924) photo originally uploaded 2006-12-18
By NewYork1956 at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons
"This is a faithful photographic reproduction of an original two-dimensional work of art. The work of art itself is in the public domain for the following reason: This image (or other media file) is in the public domain because its copyright has expired."

Recommend: Hydrate! Ablute! Allergycast App! Vanquished remarkable cold-like virus (contagious across time & space)!

Proof of cure!
Hydrate!  Ablute!  Watch allergen levels!  That's the best advice I've found for colds and spring-allergy-precipitated upper respiratory ailments... advice I'm still following even though my most recent affliction departed.  
See below for explanation of "remarkability" of this virus - in form of message to nephew.

To keep track of local allergy conditions I'm now using and recommending Allergycast (even though I don't usually recommend commercially-sponsored apps), because it's so useful, simple, and free - and generously provided by Zyrtec - avail for IOS & Android (but not for Chrome desktop browser) as of April 23, 2012.

Excerpt from message sent to nephew about a week ago:

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Wading into Online Teaching Part Deux; Archive, Presentation Slides, & Chat Transcript #TLTGFrLv 20120420

PresenterJennifer McCrickerd

Associate Professor, Philosophy

Drake University

Text Chat Transcript - including links - Below

Digital Archive - full recording of this online session.
[Archive includes slides;  here is link to slides published separately - McCrickerd's presentation slides + Steve Gilbert's intro/close slides.]

Back in October, Jennifer agreed to teach an on-line class thinking it would stretch her skills as a teacher. Now that it is April and the course will begin in a couple of months, Jennifer appreciates the way that thinking about an on-line class has made her think about teaching and what means she uses and wants to use to achieve her goals. Most importantly, she is being forced to more explicitly draw on learning theory to inform her decisions because she doesn’t have any ‘standard’ approach to fall back on.

Steve Gilbert and 40+ online participants heard and responded to Jennifer's thinking about the final stages of preparation before launching her first online class. Be ready for lots of good discussion and interaction. Many useful suggestions, questions, and online resources were exchanged by voice and within the text chat.

This is the second in a series of visits with Jennifer about her journey into online teaching. The archive of our first conversation with her back in November is available to Individual Members in the Archives section of this website. We look forward to an update on her progress in the fall, possibly including some comments from her students.

Text Chat Transcript

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

"...e-books and nonlinearity don’t turn out to be very compatible." - Lev Grossman

"It's no wonder that the rise of e-reading has revived two words for classical-era reading technologies: scroll and tablet. That's the kind of reading [linear] you do in an e-book."

Excerpts above and below from "The Mechanic Muse — From Scroll to Screen" by Lev Grossman,, September 2, 2011;  "A version of this article also appeared in print on September 4, 2011, on page BR13 of the New York Times Sunday Book Review with the headline: From Scroll to Screen."

This article provides an intriguing micro-history of reading formats: from scrolls and tablets to books (codexes?) to e-books? I esp. recommend the first image titled "THE READING DEVICE: A SHORT HISTORY" which nicely illustrates some of the article's main points.
Full disclosure: I stumbled on this article when I was looking for more info about "Fillory" - the doubly fictitious world introduced in Lev Grossman's fantasy novel The Magicians, which I'm happily reading this week.
"Scrolls were the prestige format, used for important works only: sacred texts, legal documents, history, literature. To compile a shopping list or do their algebra, citizens of the ancient world wrote on wax-covered wooden tablets using the pointy end of a stick called a stylus. Tablets were for disposable text ... At some point someone had the very clever idea of stringing a few tablets together in a bundle. Eventually the bundled tablets were replaced with leaves of parchment and thus, probably, was born the codex.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Got arrow-key envy? "Elusively Obvious" cure for iPad users: Move cursor [insertion point] within text precisely, easily on iPad screen without keyboard

Want to move the cursor or insertion point in a chunk of text on an iPad screen? Use a finger or stylus to touch someplace near where you want the point to end up. Don't tap. Hold your touch firmly there until something that looks like a magnifying glass appears. Notice that within that circle you see an expanded view of a few characters. Now without removing your finger or stylus from the screen, move it a little in one direction or another and notice that the characters displayed in the circle change and that the indicator for the insertion point is moving. Release when you have moved the insertion point to your desired new location. That should be it! [See excerpts below from Apple Support]

I learned this valuable technique when I finally realized that my preference for using an external keyboard with my iPad had much to do with my reliance on the arrow keys... and that it would be very peculiar if the brilliant iPad designers had omitted the arrow keys from the onscreen keyboard entirely by accident! Once I began searching for an alternative to arrow keys, I rapidly found the much more iPad-ish solution described above. I still like my external keyboard for typing large chunks of text, and I still like the arrow keys, but now I can do without the external keyboard more often when I'm doing less text-intensive work with my iPad.

iPad as "Intuitive" - Role of "Elusively Obvious" features to overcome transitional frustrations

Building facade based on M. C. Escher design

When we say some iPad feature is "intuitive" we usually mean that we find it comfortable and easy to use and consistent with the the iPad worldview each of us is building with increasing iPad experience. That feature rapidly feels "obvious" instead of "elusive." The iPad user minterface becomes more "intuitive" to me with every additional "native" iPad feature I learn and accept. So the next frustration that I encounter becomes easier to overcome because of my increasing facility with the system.

I really like using my iPad, but even after several months I'm still learning new tricks to overcome lingering transitional frustrations. I become a little more "iPad intuitive" each time I resolve a frustration by finding techniques that rely more fully on the iPad touchscreen interface instead of looking for methods that emulate keyboard/mouse features that had become "intuitive" to me after years of practice with that interface. Each identified frustration begins as a challenge to find something that seems elusive - not obvious - and usually ends with a solution that soon after feels quite "obvious" if it fits well within my growing iPad gestalt. That is because no computer interface is truly "intuitive" at all: the iPad interface is an especially well-designed but entirely artificial way for many human beings to interact with a computer at this time in this society.

Your "Obvious" = My "Elusive";

Building a Shared Gestalt of Overlapping Intuition

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Lost my voice 2nd time in 2 weeks. ADVICE: HYDRATE! ABLUTE!

Hydrate! Ablute!

Good advice, especially, during allergy/cold/flu season, from "Staying Well Around Cold and Flu Illnesses" from WebMD Also see WebMD Video

Good Luck!

Steven W. Gilbert, President
The Teaching, Learning, and Technology Group

Friday, April 06, 2012

Movie theater advertisers discover power of active learning! Previews AND Engagement

"The appeal for advertisers is that viewers are more likely to remember the ads they see before a movie if they are engaged with interactivity, prizes and points, said Paul Lindstrom, the senior vice president of Nielsen’s On Location service. 'An engaged audience is a more receptive audience,' Mr. Lindstrom said."

"Duh!" says Sally Gilbert

First paragraph above from "An Upgrade for the Show Before the Show," By Tanzina Vega, The New York Times, April 5, 2012



Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Social Networking and Higher Ed Part 2: Chat Transcript of FridayLive! #TLTGFrLv033012

Social Networking continued...More recommended apps, an Aplia demo, and discussion about blog and bookmarking services. With special focus on what first thing a faculty member could do to begin with social networking.
Text Chat Transcript - including links - Below  

Text Chat Transcript

------------------------------- (03/30/2012 13:54) -------------------------------
David McCurry, TLT Group: Welcome to Friday Live!