Wednesday, October 18, 2006

AECT wrapup, Podcasting, and more . . .

What a week it was in Dallas. I saw a lot of people, but I'm glad to be back at work this week. I'm worn out! Never mind the fact that Andrew (my youngest--15 months old) slept in 20 minute increments last night. Yech.

I'm enjoying the podcasting thing, but I've got to be honest. I see how people can really overuse it. It can be the new PowerPoint. You know what I mean: "It's so easy that even I do it!" I did a podcast today as a guest lecture for Jennifer Summerville's students at UNC-Wilmington on podcasting in education, and I talked about podcasting and technology for technology's sake. I see a danger here.

A big thanks to Trey Martindale, Anne Leftwich, Chris Essex, Mark Jones, Peter Rich, Drew Polley, Preston Parker and the others who helped with the podcast recording at AECT. We have something like 40 sessions. Oh yeah, and a HUGE thanks to my major professor, David Merrill, for his interview on AECT and the field. Cool stuff.

When I got back and began working on the editing of the audio, I realized that all the files were in .wma format and Garage Band doesn't like that. So after a search, I ran across EasyWMA, a fantastic donate-ware tool that converts .wma to .mp3 slicker than slick. I mean that program was EASY to use, and it does batch conversion!

Overall, I'd say that AECT was beneficial for me personally (I saw some old friends and attended some good sessions--as well as the whole podcasting thing--I'm glad to help and it will look good on the vitae), our grad students (good reviews and next year they'll help with the grad student lounge), and our program at Oklahoma State University (applicants for our position and good visibility).

Biggest highlights that don't have anything to do with the conference? Chipoltle Grill with Bruce Spitzer and the massage therapists on the last day!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

AECT, Day 3 or Prepare to Podcast

Another long day at AECT, but yet it was a good one. The first day before all the sessions really get going is a tough one for me, because if there isn't something I really want to go to, I have a hard time just attending anything.

Well thanks Trey Martindale for solving that problem. I've known Trey now for something like eight years, and he's a guy I truly look forward to seeing every year at the conference. So when he sees me and asks if I can help him for ten minutes, there's no question. Of course I will. So Trey asks me if I'll use one of the AECT digital recorders and record different sessions for podcasting. Sure, no problem. So I start helping him put batteries in them and setting the dates and times on the recorders, and before I know it, he's turned the whole AECT podcasting thing over to me. And then he sends an e-mail to Ward Cates (convention planner) telling him I'm in charge. No pressure there. So I set out to pass out eight recorders today.

I passed out six. So far I've given recorders to me, Atsusi Hirumi, Tom Hergert, Scott Adams (not the Dilbert one), Bruce Spitzer, and Mark Jones. Mark has already had to dump some audio, and they sound great. We've got a total of 14 recorders, so there are eight more to assign out. We'll see how this goes. I know that Susan Stansberry, John Nelson, Chris Essex, Anne Leftwich, and Trey are also carrying recorders.

I just got an e-mail that Chris has recorded the following: Marco Torres' Keynote for ISMF; interviews with 2 groups of parents, teachers and kids that were in ISMF; ISMF Guidelines Presentation; John Couch's keynote for AECT. Extremely cool.
I like to kid Trey about sticking me with this, but truth be told, I'm excited about it. I need to get more involved, and this is definitely going to do it.

Design and Development membership meeting was good--interesting. Afterwards Trey introduced me to Anne Leftwich. Apparently one of us (Anne or I) will be heading up the podcasting next year with the other as the lieutentant. We haven't decided yet.

I have two presentations tomorrow. One I think will go really well, and the other, well, let's just say the study didn't go well--data corrupted, just a big we stunk it up. That one should be interesting.

Went to lunch with Susan, Bruce, Mark, and Alan Foley. It was an OSU lunch. Dinner with Bruce and Mark again. Afterwards I went to the AECT mixer, and Mark and I spent some time talking to Dr. Merrill. He's going to do an interview with me about AECT for the podcasts. I'm looking forward to it.

I'm tired now. More tomorrow.

I miss my wife and kids.

AECT, Day 2

Well, here we go. Yesterday was a pretty good day. Susan Stansberry and I gave a workshop on blogs and wikis (to see the materials click here). Thanks to all the attendees. I think we had fun and learned something.

I had dinner with two of my doc students, Mark Jones and Amy Johnson. We ate at Landry's seafood house. It was OK, but it took FOREVER. So far, the undeniable winner goes to Bruce Spitzer for introducing me to the Chipotle Grill. Amen, brother! I got to introduce Mark and Amy to Charlie Reigeluth (who they read in last week's class). Kind of fun . . .

I'll try to post my thoughts on each presentation I attend.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

AECT Conference

Well, here I am at AECT, and already I'm enjoying it. I must admit. I like "being a member of the club." When I was in graduate school, our department chair at Utah State was Don Smellie, a former president of AECT. He used to tell us, "You've got to be a member of the club. If you're not a member of the club, then it doesn't matter."Â

So I do like being a member of the club and the social aspect of this conference.

So far I've run into some people I've known for a while and it's been good to catch up. I had breakfast with David Merrill, chatted with Andy Gibbons and Don Descy, caught up with Brad Hokanson, Lauren Cifuentes and Jennifer Summerville, and I SAW Trey Martindale, but I haven't talked with him yet.

I plan on posting throughout the week.

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Distance Education Changes

Here's an interesting change in how we think about distance educaton written over on the Cognitive Dissonance blog. It's not "anytime, anywhere . . ." it's "everywhere, all the time."

It's interesting when you think about it.