Like pretty much everyone else in the field I've been immensely enjoying Tony Bates's work-in-progress, an online open textbook called Teaching in a Digital Age.
Having said that, I think my perspective is very different from his, and this summary post offers me an opportunity to highlight some of those differences. So in what follows, the key points (in italics) are his, while the text that follows is my discussion.
As 2014 draws to a close and we look forward to what 2015 will bring, I’d like to share a simple and fun classroom challenge with you: STEM Curiosity Links. For the past two semesters, I’ve made a point of sharing several STEM “curiosity links” with my students at least once per week. On days I share curiosity links with students, I try to limit myself to just using 10 minutes of class time. I need to set this time limit, because (depending on the class) we can really get into good discussions with lots of questions, and we could take MUCH more time exploring the ideas the week’s curiosity links inspire. While I’d love engaging in long discussions like this with students, and I know they have value, I also understand that my students learn the most when they are actually DOING STEM activities rather than just talking about them or STEM ideas. My students who are working and playing in our STEM “Maker’s Studio” are always especially eager to “get to work.”
Vimodi has a unique nonlinear viewer and was designed so that content conforms to the discussion - and not the other way around. Its distinctive feature is that it lets you discuss content non-linearly rather than the linear format of PowerPoint or KeyNote. Perfect for business meetings, sales meetings or teaching where you want to keep the discussion open yet know in advance what the key areas for discussion should be.
"I've written about Padlet a lot over the years because of its flexibility to fit into a lot of classroom situations. One of the ways that you can use Padlet is to have students collaboratively create multimedia KWL (Know, Want, Learn) charts...."
"The task force was charged with updating the information literacy competency standards for higher education “so that they reflect the current thinking on such things as the creation and dissemination of knowledge, the changing global higher education and learning environment, the shift from information literacy to information fluency, and the expanding definition of information literacy to include multiple literacies, e.g., transliteracy, media literacy, digital literacy, etc.”'
However, the way we think about online learning is inadequate. Attitudes generally fall into one of two prevailing camps: online learning optimism and pessimism. Both sides are entrenched in meaningless, largely unproductive opposition, perhaps because both perspectives talk past one another in advancing valid points.
Optimists see online learning as inevitable, driven by demand for greater efficiency. Pessimists see institutions abusing government programs and uninformed consumers to maximize profits while undermining or even mocking quality of learning outcomes as a concept.
Within this polarized mix of ideas rests an underappreciated but important third perspective: online learning realism.
By: Maryellen Weimer, PhD in Teaching Professor Blog -
We all pretty much agree that we try to cover too much material in our courses, programs, and majors, but the thought of leaving things out often causes personal and profession anguish. We argue with ourselves that a certain piece of content is too important to cut, and our students need to know the information to pass certifying exams and to get jobs. Then there are departmental expectations. Most courses establish knowledge bases for subsequent courses. Our colleagues are depending on us. We further complicate matters by making course and instructor reputations a function of content quantity. A decrease in the amount covered means lower standards and a dilution of the intellectual currency of the course. Bottom line: We know we’ve got a problem, but these realities and our thinking have us backed into a corner.
Burkholder asks a question that creates some space in which to move. “What should the role of content be?” I vote for multiple roles.
edX recently commissioned a study of nearly 1,000 videos, segmenting them out by by video type and production style, and discovered this among their other findings:
Shorter videos are more engaging. Engagement drops after 6 minutes.Videos with a more personal feeling are more effective than high-fidelity studio recordings. Videos in which the instructor speaks quickly and with high enthusiasm are more engaging.Khan-style tablet drawings are more engaging than power point slides.
Via Dennis T OConnor
Using the right questions creates powerful, sometimes multiple answers and discussions. Aristotle said that he asked questions in response to other people’s views, while Socrates focused on disciplined questioning to get to the truth of the matter.
In any given classroom, there are invariably learners who simply don’t connect with what’s being taught. Lectures can be easy to tune out. A textbook can feel dense and boring to finish. Even a video can pose limitations for learners with sight or hearing difficulties. When these are the only options available, some learners are bound to fall behind without requesting special support, while others will surge ahead. Differentiation is one way to bridge this gap, and another is adapting the curriculum to suit all learners, instead of adjusting it to support the needs of each one.
That latter approach, called Universal Design for Learning (UDL), operates under a handful of broad principles that mainly concern themselves with the what, how and why of learning.
These are heady days for education technology. In fact, with big investments in outfits like Everspring and Udemy, I’d say 2014 was the biggest year yet in edtech. However, if you thought that was impressive, you haven’t seen anything yet. What does 2015 hold for the year in this fast-moving sector?
"The August 2014 edition of the Australian-based journal, Distance Education (Vol.35, No. 2.), is devoted to new research on MOOCs. There is a guest editor, Kemi Jona, from Northwestern University, Illinois, as well as the regular editor, Som Naidu. The six articles in this edition are fascinating, both in terms of their content, but even more so in their diversity. There are also three commentaries, by Jon Baggaley, Gerhard Fischer and myself."
Easy and efficient way to organize, structure and keep track of notes the way you want. Keep it simple or take it to the next level - advanced data management with unique type, tagging, templating and filtering features.
The academic journey of university students on Facebook: an analysis of informal academic-related activity over a semester
This paper reports on an observation of 70 university students’ use of their personal social network site (SNS), Facebook, over a 22-week university study period. The study sought to determine the extent that university students use their personal SNSs to support learning by exploring frequencies of academic-related content and topics being discussed. The findings reported in the paper reveal that students used their personal SNSs to discuss academic-related topics, particularly to share experiences about doing work or procrastinating, course content and grades. Mapping academic-related activity frequencies over the 22 weeks illustrated that around certain points in the academic calendar, particularly times when students’ assignments or exams were nearing, academic activity increased, suggesting that SNSs may play an important role in a students’ academic experience.
The findings suggest that many students today may be leaving traces of their academic journey online and that academics should be aware that these interactions may also exist in their own students’ online social spaces. This study offers opportunities for future research, particularly research which seeks to determine differences between individuals’ academic activity, the extent that intensive SNSs use supports or distracts students from learning, as well as the extent to which universities should or can harness SNSs to improve the student experience.
Keywords: informal learning; social networking; Facebook; university students; social network sites
Curation is a life skill and an important part of being digitally literate. Educators need to know how to curate information so they can teach students how they can curate content for research, their interests and passion. As part of this process educators need to encourage students to curate information using techniques that address their own personal learning needs.
Sharing your scoops to your social media accounts is a must to distribute your curated content. Not only will it drive traffic and leads through your content, but it will help show your expertise with your followers.
How to integrate my topics' content to my website?
Integrating your curated content to your website or blog will allow you to increase your website visitors’ engagement, boost SEO and acquire new visitors. By redirecting your social media traffic to your website, Scoop.it will also help you generate more qualified traffic and leads from your curation work.
Distributing your curated content through a newsletter is a great way to nurture and engage your email subscribers will developing your traffic and visibility.
Creating engaging newsletters with your curated content is really easy.