Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What in the Wordle are my research interests?

I was talking to one of our graduate students, Mark Jones, and he showed me a Wordle cloud he made using his dissertation literature review. I thought it was a cool idea, and I thought I'd show you the cloud I made using my dissertation, Can advance organizers reduce computer anxiety in preservice teachers?.

Dissertation Cloud

Friday, November 14, 2008

The power of viral video

Three videos I came across today that cracked me up.  I just thought I'd share.  I guess only two would qualify as viral, but I thought it was a good title.

Star Wars: An a capella tribute to John Williams



Rhett and Link's Facebook Song:



Miami Univ. Facebook Song:

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I love the smell of books . . .

One of the things that I love the most about Oklahoma State University is our own Edmond Low Library.



Some of the other schools that I've either attended or taught at had old libraries, but none of them was as cool as Edmond Low.  It SMELLS like old books.  As I was thinking about it today, I wondered: What books are you reading (or planning to read)? Here's what I've got going on right now (not counting my daily scripture reading):

Books I'm reading:

Books I'm soon to pick up:

So what about you? I know you must love books, too. What are you reading? What are you going to read? Any suggestions for me?

In the meantime, smell a book and enjoy!


Friday, November 7, 2008

The classroom is disappearing-or is it?

Notes taken while listening to Allison Rosset, San Diego State University.

This was the third and final keynote of the AECT conference.  As always, my notes are in italics. I have to warn you. This one is quite long.  See the notes after the jump:

Learner as the designer: An instructional design and learning model for Web 2.0

Notes and thoughts from listening to Jeremy Tutty, Boise State University

Man, don’t ever start your presentation saying that you’re not sure if what you are saying is correct or not.  YIKES!
What can we do to promote effective learning with Web 2.0 tools?

Reflect on our own practice. What do we do that works?

Key characteristics: dynamic, social, collaborative

Analyze learners, devise authentic tasks, provide necessary support and feedback, use self and peer evaluation

Where is this going? Oh, he said you become more a facilitator than an instructor.  Interesting. That’s what my master’s thesis said in 1996.

Great. He’s talking constructivism and social learning theory.  Social Construction of Technology (SCOT) theory and Connectivism. He’s talking about knowledge existing outside of us.  Isn’t that wrong as far as constructivism goes?


Conceptual framework: social/collaborative; learner as designer; knowledge management.

I’m sitting in the wrong spot. This guy is standing RIGHT IN MY WAY, and I can’t see everything on his slides.  Kind of funny actually.

I just wonder why people don’t just get to the point.  No need to go to New York City by way of San Francisco . . .


How do learners become their own designers?   How will they work to design meaningful instruction? As he goes through all this theory I don’t think anyone came to hear, I just wonder where this is going to go.


Phases of Web 2.0 ID:
Analysis
Collaboration and Personalization
Evaluation

I wish you could see this model he has on PowerPoint. It makes Dick and Carey look user friendly.  Seriously.  Talk about the fog getting in the way of the game.  I count 12 circles, three boxes, and three arrows. AMAZINGLY cluttered.  I’ll be honest with you here. I’m so put off by just how it looks visually, that I’m not paying much attention to what it is that he is trying to say. This guy seems like a really nice guy, he also seems nervous, and I appreciate the fact that they are working and trying to add to the body of knowledge in the field, but this just isn’t sitting well with me.

How will the learners know how to create an authentic task? How do they know what the best tool for them to use is?  Those seem to be big cognitive leaps for learners.

I’m not gonna lie. We’re ten minutes into this, and he’s lost me.  I’m not sure that I’m willing to follow him down this road.

Interesting. As he talks about what the students thought when they used it, the students thought it was A LOT OF WORK.  But yet, the students seemed to enjoy it.

One of the questions here the presenter is asking is whether or not we think this is a model.  One guy here in the audience just responded, “if you think it’s a model, then it’s a model.” Um, I don’t think so.

Overall impression: Needs work.

Technology Integration Showcase: Strategies and Tools Worthy of Discussion

Thoughts and notes listening to Drew Polly, UNC-Charlotte; Tonya Amankwatia, Lehigh; Clif Mims, Memphis; Lloyd Reiber, UGA

Lamb from GA Southern: making movie trailers in foreign language instruction.

Movie maker? That’s a web 2.0 tool? Cool examples, though.  She has these posted on her high school web page, but she hasn’t given us the URL . . .

www.vamosalososcars.com

Lloyd Reiber UGA: Google Forms, Zamzar

UGA requires a gmail account in their intro class and they use the Google Suite as their standard.

In Google Docs, go to create new form . . . ?

Holy Cow. I can’t wait to use this.  This is incredibly easy.  I can’t wait to use this!  Didn’t I already say that? I don’t know why I’m so surprised. Google’s stuff is so much better than most anything else.  I’ve got to show this to Jesse.  He’s going to flip.  This is so much easier than SharePoint.  Man, this thing even takes the data and throws it right into a spreadsheet! Lloyd also suggest SurveyMonkey, which I know that Jesse has used.

Clif Mims U Memphis: Diigo

Clif uses Diigo in his classes.  How could I do this and make it effective? I need to use the groups better.  I also need to annotate and use tags better.  That’s it. I’m a slacker once again.

Overall impression: YOU'LL NEVER KNOW ALL THE 2.0 TOOLS. I knew MovieMaker (which I don't consider web 2.0), Zamzar, and Diigo, but Google Forms is a revelation.  YIPEE!

Podcasting and iTunes U

Thoughts and notes from listening to Ann Barron and Luis Perez from teh University of South Florida.

As always, my thoughts are in italics.

How can we use podcasts to create authentic, engaged learning?

http://itunes.usf.edu

Why doesn’t OSU have something like this?  I know that there has to be enough faculty to merit this.

Can be authenticated through the CMS. Really? That’s cool.

WOW! These guys have ~7000 downloads a WEEK!

Here we go: How to do this:

University Level players:
Provost office (contract), Academic computing (setup), Public relations (design)

THERE ARE CONTRACTS TO BE SIGNED.

Issues: who is the target audience? What would they be interested in? what content do we have? What content can we produce? How will we manage the production and administration? What policies need to be established?

She keeps saying, “this isn’t to be entered into lightly.”  Finally, she followed up with something: “It’s much different to do this than having one faculty member recording podcasts for their class and posting them up.”

iTunes initiatives awards at USF. 27 iPods for writing up an abstract on how they would implement podcasting into instruction—much like the online course creation workshop at OSU.

Dr. Michael Berson—David Bucker might be interested in what this guy does.

Other issues: intellectual property, releases (permission to publish, etc.), how should the podcasts be divided? By department or topics?

I wonder if OSU should have some faculty podcasting group or something like that . . . I need to get from Mark Jones the name of that guy at OSU who is big on podcasting and start swapping information with him.

Right now they are going through a lot of the administrative side of iTunes U, which, you know, almost NO ONE in this room will ever do. So why show it?


Man, it’s HOT in this room. I’m nodding off . . .

Production: script, record, edit, export

If you are doing something to actually add value to the instruction, then you’ll have to take time planning ahead of time.

Longer podcasts need chapters.

Tools: iSquint (free for Mac! Yeah!), videora iPod converter (free for windows), Metadata Hootenanny

Does D2L have a podcasting module? Lee uses D2L, and it sounds like you just have to use raw .mp3 files. That’s horrible.

Look for the Techies podcast Luis does.

Overall impression: Interesting information, but they spent more time talking about the specifics of how to use iTunes rather than how to do the podcasts themselves.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Future of Education and IT

Thoughts listening to Dr. George Strawn CIO of NSF

Oh, man, the guy is hyping Obama. Can we please just get to the presentation?

OK, so I had a HUGE list of comments here, but of course, this is AECT which means GARBAGE for a wireless connection.  When this presentation was over and I went to save, it timed out on me.  Now, the whole presentation it had been saving drafts (or at least looking like it had been), but since I had lost my connection, no drafts saved.  What you see above is what I got.

The good news? You didn't miss anything.  He didn't say anything new or exciting. I'm not sure he knew who his audience really was. I was sitting next to Atsusi Hirumi (2c) and he leaned over to me about 3/4 of the way through and asked, "Has he said anything I don't know?" I responded, "I don't think so." This presentation was eerily similar to a presentation I've seen 2c give many times  when he's recruiting graduate students.

I would have liked to have had his suggested readings, though. I do remember a couple of titles: ROBOT, DISRUPTING CLASS, and PHANTOMS IN (OF?) THE BRAIN? I'm not sure on that last one. But he talked about the Disrupting Class one more than anything.

Was is worth my time? I guess. It was okay for a keynote, but nothing revelatory for me.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

"Live from Orlando, it's AECT!" or "Why do I attend to conferences?"

So I'm sitting in the convention center lobby of the Buena Vista Palace in Orlando, Florida right now.  I've got Anne Leftwich on my left, and a German speaking couple in front of me.  I snagged this spot for the comfy chairs and the ability to kick my feet up on the big stone table and work.  I could sit in my room and work, but then that would be ridiculous.  Seriously, who wants to come to Orlando and sit in a hotel room?  Not me. So I'll sit in a lobby.  Like that's a big difference. I was supposed to be helping present a workshop right now,  but I'm not helping with it after all.  So I came a day earlier than I needed to.  I was also supposed to help with another workshop today, but it got accidentally cancelled, so still I came a day early.

So why do I come to these things? As anyone who's read much of what I've written will know, I'm a graduate of Utah State University. And USU is a big AECT school.  Now, for those of you who don't know what AECT is, it is the Association for Educational Communication and Technology, which is basically the academic organization for educational technology.  It has divisions for each domain in the field, and I primarily participate in the design and development and teacher education divisions.  I also have done things with distance learning, training and development, and multimedia production.  But Design and Development and Teacher Ed are my homes.  At any rate, I can remember being in graduate school and our department head, Don Smellie, telling us, "If you're not a member of the club (AECT), then it doesn't matter . . ." And so I became a member of AECT, and I guess I have been for around ten years now.

But why do I come? Well, first of all, I enjoy the relationships.  There are certain people that I look forward to seeing that I don't get to see anywhere else.  Some of them are Trey Martindale, David Wiley, Brad Hokanson, and Atsusi Hirumi.  I also get the chance to meet others.  I'm giving a presentation with Clif Mims on Thursday, and other than GChat, Twitter, and the like, we've never met. I can't wait to meet him in person.

I also come to learn something.  Now AECT isn't actually known for loads of brain-busting presentations, actually, it is a wonderful conference for graduate students to present at, but I genrally try to steer clear of a lot of those.  But I ALWAYS leave AECT with ideas, and that alone makes it worth the trip.

But I miss my family, and I'd much rather be at home with them.

So at any rate, what am I going to do to make this trip worthwhile? Well, I'm going to "live-blog" my presentations, that is, all but the one I'm actually presenting.  I'll just jot down my notes so others can see what I think. I know that I can do it with Twitter and the like, but I would rather do it this way.

What about you? What conferences do you attend? WHY do you attend them? What do you get from attending?

Talk amongst yourselves . . .