Academic Support In A Digital Age

Although you might not advise  or support students in an online degree program, there are increasing efforts for teaching and learning technology.  Learning delivery and design does impact how we support our students. Adoption of technology, either a tool, platform, or space, will also be driven by decisions to change pedagogical methods (Bates, 2015), and this includes the current advising model/culture on campus. Our students want the same flexibility, access, and online support. Often is is just the degree program and curriculum that appears online, then the digital student success side of the program is an afterthought for these technology determinations. We need to have more student success and academic advising programs consider the best technology to provide advising content and service delivery (Steele, 2015) for a more learner-centered approach.

digital DNA

Digital DNA by Adriana Varella and Nilton Malz 

Whether you are leveraging technology to optimize your student support services or your campus is transitioning to either a blended or online learning model, there is both a need and desire to improve technology for academic advisors and student support practices in higher education (Pasquini & Steele, 2015). During your planning, it will be critical for your institution to ask the following questions before selecting technology-mediated environments for advising and learner support: 

  • What technologies is your institution currently utilizing for academic advising or student support?
  • How does your division or unit on campus decide on the most appropriate mode of technology delivery? [Will this be a campus-wide decision?]
  • What factors should be determined when designing technology in advising program and/or student support functional area?
  • What other strategies and structural support might benefit your campus in preparing  staff as they support learners digitally?  (e.g. training, skill development, etc.)

Join me as I discuss this further next Wednesday, September 14th from 12-1 pm EDT for the ACPA Commission for Academic Support in Higher Education (CASHE) Presents Webinar: “Selecting Technology for Advising and Supporting Your Students.” During this online event, I will be sharing a few evidence-based ideas and practical resources to help your advising team address these questions. This webinar will introduce your campus planning group to a few strategies and structures as they select technology for advising and student support. Sign up for this FREE webinar sponsored by ACPA CASHE here: http://goo.gl/tR8THa 

References

Bates, A. W., (2015). Chapter 9: Modes of delivery. In Guidelines for designing teaching and learning for a digital age. Open Text BC.

Pasquini, L. A., & Steele, G. (2016). Technology in academic advising: Perceptions and practices in higher education. figshare. Retrieved from https://dx.doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.3053569.v7

Steele, G. (2015). Using Technology for Intentional Student Evaluation and Program AssessmentNACADA Clearinghouse of Academic Advising Resources. 

Research Study: Exploring Mentoring Experiences

Mentoring is often a relationship between a less experienced individual, called a mentee or protégé, and a more experienced individual known as a mentor. Traditionally, mentoring is viewed as a face-to-face, long-term relationship and interactions between a supervisory adult and a novice student that fosters the mentee’s professional, academic, or personal development (Donaldson, Ensher, & Grant-Vallone, 2000). The typical examples of mentoring focus on a senior and junior configuration; however there are growing experiences and models that vary in mentoring experiences. Different structures of mentoring (e.g. formal, peer, group, network, and informal mentoring) support career goals, while other mentoring opportunities help contribute to a particular field or discipline.

mentoring

About the Research Study

A number of our professional organizations offer mentoring opportunities and structured mentoring programs as a form of learning and development. For this research study, our team would like to learn more about MENTORING EXPERIENCES; specifically, how these experiences impact the participants (i.e. mentors,protégé, and program coordinators) with regards to their personal and professional development. We are in the early days of learning the how mentoring has impacted individueals and what mentoring means for professionals.

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We seek to explore mentoring through the shared narrative of mentoring experiences to answer the following research questions:

  • What influence does mentoring have on personal, professional, academic, and career development?
  • How does mentoring impact contributions to a professional association and/or learning organizations?
  • How does mentoring contribute to a professional field or industry?

Support our Mentoring Research!

Phase 1: Survey http://bit.ly/ExploringMentoring

This survey asks both open- and close-ended questions, and it will take 15-20 minutes to complete. Respondents will be asked about personal perspectives on mentoring based on their own experiences and demographic information:

If you have had more than one formal mentoring role and/or formal mentoring experience – please feel free to submit another survey response. This survey will remain open for several weeks if you decide to complete this survey or if you wish to pass this along to other colleagues who can share their mentoring experience.

Phase 2: Research Interviews

 http://bit.ly/MentoringInterviews 

We want to learn more about mentoring programs and its impact on personal and professional development, to its influence on the field/discipline, and to understand how mentoring supports professional associations who create these programs.The interview is expected to take 45-60 minutes and no sensitive questions will be asked during it. Your participation in this study is completely voluntary and optional.If you are willing to talk with a researcher via phone or Skype about your experiences, please click on this link to complete the informed consent formhttp://bit.ly/MentoringInterviews

Thanks to the members of the Exploring Mentoring Research Team who are supporting to this study:

  • Mariya Gavrilova Aguilar, University of North Texas
  • Laura Lambeth, Oregon State University
  • Sara Ackerson, Washington State University Vancouver
  • Ed Cabellon, Bridgewater State University

With thanks for support and development also from:

  • Craig McGill, Florida International University
  • Erin Justyna, Texas Tech University
  • Brandan Lowden, Pikes Peak Community College

For further questions or inquiries about this study, please contact Dr. Laura Pasquini (Laura.Pasquini@unt.edu), as we would be more than happy to follow up with questions, additional support, recruitment, and/or collaboration.

Reference:

Donaldson, S. I., Ensher, E. A., & Grant-Vallone, E. J. (2000). Longitudinal examination of mentoring relationships on organizational commitment and citizenship behavior. Journal of Career Development, 26, 233-249.

Feedback Wanted: #OLCInnovate Solution Design Summit Video Trailers

You may have read my previous CFP post looking for learning challenges & solutions – that was for the NEW program feature of #OLCInnovate, The Solution Design Summit (SDS). Nine SDS teams, who proposed a learning issue with a potential solution, have been selected by a blind, peer-review panel to be our finalists who will participate in our 1st Summit  at the 2016 OLC Innovate conference in NOLA. This pre-conference event will be an opportunity to network with peers from other SDS Teams, specifically to solicit feedback from potential learning stakeholders.

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VIEW THE SDS TEAM VIDEO TRAILERS

 Learn More About the Solution Design Summit

Now the SDS Teams need YOUR feedback!

Please WATCH the Solution Design Summit trailers on the #OLCInnovate Sandbox (a Canvas LMS site) for the conference. To join this Canvas site, click the “Enroll” button at the top of the page or enroll HERE https://canvas.instructure.com/enroll/MGEHMW  

To effectively COMMENT and provide FEEDBACK, our SDS Planning Team has developed  Guidelines for Solution Design Summit: Giving Feedback to Teams Please find all 9 videos and SDS Team pages HERE to do such things. You can READ the full proposal and learn more about these learning solutions by clicking on the “Read more at the Team page” links below.

If You Build It, Will They Come?

Read more at the Team page

Preserving Core Experiences in the Online Learning Environment

Read more at the Team page

Bridging the Engagement Gap for Distance Students Through Telerobotics

Read more at the Team page

Supporting Adjunct Faculty to Maximize Student Learning in the Online Classroom

Read more at the Team page

Expanding college classrooms into high schools via distance learning network

Read more at the Team page

Using Student Data as a Map, Not a Target

Read more at the Team page

An Interdisciplinary Approach to Cultural Relevance in the Curriculum

Read more at the Team page

Creating Pathways to Digital Peer Leadership in the Liberal Arts

Read more at the Team page

Cohort-specific Online Discussion Experiences

Read more at the Team page

Are you coming to #OLCInnovate? You should also plan to come to SDS Pitch Sessions during the Conference all hosted in Rhythms II Room of the New Orleans Sheraton Hotel. Three SDS Teams will pitch their learning challenge and solution during ONE (1) concurrent session in just 10-minutes. Audience members will be given 5 minutes for Q & A and then encouraged to cast their vote for the best solution design.

Thursday,

April 21, 2016

11:15 am-12:00 pm 1. Cohort-specific Online Discussion Experiences

2. Expanding College Classrooms into High Schools via Distance Learning Networks

3. Bridging the Engagement Gap for Distance Students Through Telerobotics

Friday,

April 22, 2016

9:45 am -10:30 am 1. If You Build It, Will They Come?

2. Supporting Adjunct Faculty to Maximize Student Learning in the Online Classroom

3. An Interdisciplinary Approach to Cultural Relevance in the Curriculum

Friday,

April 22, 2016

11:15 am -12:00 pm 1. Preserving Core Experiences in the Online Learning Environment

2. Using Student Data as a Map, Not a Target

3. Creating Pathways to Digital Peer Leadership in the Liberal Arts

Thanks for your support! Much love from the #OLCInnovate 2016 SDS Planning Team:

  • Mike Goudzwaard, Dartmouth College, @mgoudz (Co-Chair)
  • Laura Pasquini, University of North Texas, @laurapassquini (Co-Chair)
  • Patrice Torcivia, Cornell University, @profpatrice
  • Kyle Johnson, Chaminade University, @kyleejohnson
  • Michael Atkisson, Brigham Young University, @mikeatkisson
  • Adam Croom, University of Oklahoma @acroom
  • Allison Dulin Salisbury – EdSurge @amdulin  (Reviewer)
  • Sean Michael Morris – Hybrid Pedagogy, @slamteacher (Advisor)

Sparking a Few Ideas for #OLCInnovate in NOLA!

April is just around the corner. Some say it brings Spring showers, but I know it brings jazz and learning in New Orleans.  I am looking forward to the NOLA Jazz & Heritage Festival (1st time for me!) and welcoming the many conference participants to the NEW 2016 OLC Innovate (#OLCInnovate). Less than one month from now, we are excited to kick off the new conference with the opening session with the #OLCInnovate Lightning Talks!

This opening session, on Wednesday, April 20th from 5-6:30 pm, will host a series of rapid-fire talks to introduce a variety of themes around the topic of innovation, including pedagogy, structure, workforce, and the challenges we face in learning. The format for the #OLCInnovate Lightning Talks are as follows – each presenter is given 6 minutes to talk while their 20 slides automatically advance every 18 seconds. We hope the quick-pace of these mini-keynotes introduce you to the concepts of innovation inspire you to think further about the conference experience ahead. Here’s the speaker line-up for the evening:

Title of Talk: Reachin’ Out to Meet the Changes

RolinMoe

Rolin Moe (a.k.a. @RMoeJo), Seattle Pacific University

About Rolin’s Lightning Talk: Embracing the structures of education means understanding the complexities of all members of the community. There are no shortcuts. 20th Century poet Laura Riding made it her life’s mission to create a universal dictionary where every word would only have one meaning. This would clear up ambiguity and allow people to communicate more effectively. Since this is probably the first you have heard of Laura Riding, you can imagine the fate of her dictionary. This is a victory for language; it is the imperfection of the human state that creates the most meaning.

 Using Core Values to Collaborate, Innovate, and Educate

JulieLarsen

Julie Larsen ( a.k.a. @julieclarsen), University of Washington

About Julie’s Lightning Talk: Starting with values identification allows peer educators to name their own “why” and develop better mentoring relationships. Give your learners the toolbox, and let them build their own course.Training and development is most often focused on policies and procedures. Innovation lies in creating a mentoring and peer education program founded in values-based education that focuses on the “why” more than the “how.” By encouraging students to use discernment and judgment, retention and satisfaction with experience will follow.

From Redlining to Digital Redlining

ChrisGilliard Chris Gilliard, Ph.D. (@hypervisible)Macomb Community College

About Chris’ Lightning Talk: Digital footprints serve discriminatory purposes similar to traditional forms of redlining that are now outlawed. Academic IT policies risk complicity with such discrimination. Where redlining was once a geographic classification for channeling financial advantage to the white, middle-class, it has been reinvented in digital practices that affect finance, employment policing, and education. In education, digital redlining arises out of uncritical policies that regulate the engagement of community college’s working class students with technology.

Today’s the Day: Balancing The Reality of Faculty Scholarship with Innovations in Digital Authorship

 NoriBarajas-Murphy

Nori Barajas-Murphy (a.k.a. @nononi28), University of La Verne

About Nori’s Lightning Talk: It’s time to rethink the definition of faculty publications. Authoring course texts and designing curriculum are the products of innovative faculty and should be considered scholarship. Developing cultures of innovation for faculty across institution types requires restructuring traditional emphasis on scholarship and publication. Institutions that honor the time needed to develop digital content with course releases and course development sabbaticals will fuel innovation and offer students course materials beyond a textbook cartridge.

There’s A Lot More Going On Behind That Screen

PaulBrown

 

Paul Gordon Brown (a.k.a. @paulgordonbrown), Boston College

About Paul’s Lightning Talk: Moving learners from external to internal motivation and how the developmental process plays out online. Research into the impact of digital and social technology on student development remains relatively new, therefore, consider how we reflect on some of the same questions asked of our learners. To trigger discussion and share strategies, this talk will instigate how practitioners can be more when engaging their learners about digital identity development.

That being said, we hope you are actively contributing to the opening program as well. These fantastic speakers plan to INVOLVE YOU by presenting a question, introducing a challenge, or prompting participants to chat with one another about the central message from their talk. We encourage ALL OF YOU to create a “digital make” using the conference hashtag, #OLCInnovate, to share your thoughts and reflections. And since we are in New Orleans, we will, of course, have drinks and snacks to enjoy. We hope this dynamic welcome allows you to ponder a few innovation ideas and allows you to connect to the OLC and MERLOT community.

Women_Ed_Tech

OLC Innovate: Women in Ed Tech Scholarship Award

Applications for the women in the field of #EdTech who exemplify leadership qualities in the field of online learning are OPEN! In 2015, the Women in EdTech Scholarship was established by the Online Learning Consortium (OLC) in conjunction with the Women in EdTech dinner, an event sponsored by Loud Cloud at OLC’s 2015 #ET4Online Conference. The scholarship honors women in the field of EdTech who exemplify leadership qualities in the field of online learning and who contribute to the field through the adoption of innovative practices or new research in the field. This scholarship will be presented at the 2016 OLC Innovate conference in New Orleans April 20-22, 2016. This scholarship includes an OLC Innovate conference registration, 2 nights at the Sheraton New Orleans Hotel to use during the conference, attendance at the 2016 Women in Online Leadership Dinner and a commemorative plaque.

This blog post has been cross-posted on the Online Learning Consortium blog

What’s Your “Ideal” Job?

Have you ever been asked to describe your “ideal” job? Sometimes this comes up in a traditional job interview.  Or perhaps you had someone (a teacher, family member, or friend) just ask you about your career goals. Have you thought about what sort of work drives you? Do you know what sort of “job” you are looking for in your field that best fits you? How does work design impact what you do daily? What inspires you in your day-to-day work? How do you prefer to function and perform?
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These are questions I have asked my students for years. We spend a lot of time in the world of work. So, it’s a natural to want to know about goals and purpose as a student discusses courses in an academic advising appointment. And it is even more intentional as I have worked with undecided majors and first-year students (undergraduate and graduate) to help with their career exploration journey. This semester I am instructing LTEC 3010: Personal Development (a scaled up version that I promise to blog about soon), where we dive into these specific issues (follow #LTEC3010):
  • Determining avenues to find a job and planning your career
  • Preparing for the workforce: job search, interviews, resumes, applications, etc.
  • Getting started at your new job: dress, etiquette, digital identity, etc.
  • Being productive: Managing stress and time effectively, & working with others
  • Developing your career: Finding support, connecting to professional organizations, strategies & challenges for moving up the ladder, and seeking out mentorship experiences.
I typically ask my students what their “ideal” job and/or career entails — however until recently I haven’t flipped the tables on myself. After a recent prompt from someone, I decided to list what MY “ideal” interests are for the world of work — specifically targeted towards learning and development.
In general, I am interested in understanding how to build and support the complex learning spaces we work in, specifically, as we consider the connection between formal to informal learning (found among K-12, higher education & the workforce). If I was on a formal job hunt, here are a few items I would be scanning for in the job posting descriptions for, specifically to uncover the culture of an organization:
  • The opportunity to research the challenges/barriers that higher ed faces for our learning landscapes, which includes pedagogy and design of online, blended, and F2F learning. In particular, the issues encounter with HE faculty and staff development, systemic challenges, and student access. Those organizations who are aligned with a similar research agenda, i.e. new ideas of learning, learning delivery, and approaches to educational models impacting us now and in the future, would entice me to apply.
  • The ability to apply research into practice. This means continuing to be active in the field of learning and teaching, through course instruction and/or training & development programs for formal and informal learning. The idea of creating and delivering curriculum to various campus stakeholders who share similar emerging ideas for learning and research is exciting to me.
  • The opportunity for community building and network development to enhance the work of our segregated professional learning organizations that support HE faculty, practitioners, and administrators — specifically distributing knowledge, resources, and issues across these sections of our institutions. I would love to be part of an organization with a broader vision that can offer  t; offering an avenue for social sharing/learning; considering these contributions beyond a space or place (i.e. conference, event, etc.) to allow for on-going dialogues; being a central hub to cross-pollinate ideas and deal with issues
  • Being encouraged to collaborate and support design thinking as a process for innovation within a team across our higher education organizations and/or institutions. In working with a number of talented and thoughtful folks, I have learned the value of incubating ideas to solve problems and work on shared projects. We need to apply this nimble sort of thinking to our learning organization. We need to value both the process and not just the final product, in an environment that values and encourages sharing.

Those are my general thoughts for my future focus for work, and here are a few practical/personal preferences* for my world of work. Here are a few “must haves” for my ideal job:

  • Shared vision with the organization; appropriate cultural fit that supports the above ideas and goals
  • Balance between shared projects and individual assignments
  • Opportunity to continue current research projects and/or contract instructional assignments within higher education and/or learning institutions
  • Flexibility for my work environment, i.e. ability to work within an office and the allowance to be a distributed team member (telecommutes/remote work)
  • Open & available for traveling to consult, work, train, etc.
  • Preference for project-based work vs. a set schedule of hours per day/week, while offering regular updates and progress reports as required
  • Being both challenged and supported on assignment projects and contributions
  • The culture of learning is embedded to the work functions; learning is not just something we talk, research, or do — the organization lives its mandate for all employees (i.e. professional development, mentoring, coaching, etc.)

*Note: I am sure I have other preferences (wants & needs) for a job — but let’s just start with this list and see what is out there first.

Can you describe your “ideal” job? If so, please share!

1st Happy Hour Broadcast: Women Who Wine in Education (#3Wedu)

Did you ever have a great conversation at a conference, training event, or networking break about education over a glass of wine? If not, you have missed out. I am grateful that I have a few (of many) ladies who I  share this sort of chat with on a regular basis. Enter the following conspirators — Jess (@jlknott), Tanya (@tjoosten), Nori (@nononi28), and Patrice (@Profpatrice) — who wanted to expand this conversation further into a monthly podcast series for 2016 about higher education over a glass of wine:

Women Who Wine in Education (#3Wedu)

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In planning for a conference proposal, this fine group of ladies discussed a few ideas and issues in higher education that need clarity for the women who work in the field. Collectively, we decided it would be a good idea to discuss these topics further, specifically to:

  • understand the value of women leading innovation in higher ed
  • overcome gender barriers or challenges women may experience in our field
  • enhance the support of women in leadership roles through mentoring and coaching
  • empower women from all levels and disciplines (junior and senior)
  • support women doing amazing things and to provide better recognition for said things

There is no doubt that big ideas often get shared in podcasts. I have been fortunate to be part of a fine podcasting gang in the past [shout out to BreakDrink], and I am looking forward to the future chats with the #3Wedu posse. As Tanya said, we hope to bring forth ideas to banter, share, debate, discuss, and then some on the topics of education over a glass of wine. If you are interested in similar topics, or want to learn what we are sipping out — you should probably join in.  So, grab a beverage of your choice (wine or not), and join the discussion! Our first broadcast is happening here this Wednesday, January 20th from 5 – 6 pm CST as we discuss The Culture of Work* in higher education:


Google+ Hangout event page 
and, of course, join the backchannel conversation:

*Note: Our podcast backchannel notes, tweets, and broadcast will be updated here and on the YouTube channel post-show. Please let us know what you think, and chime into the vino chat. Missing this LIVE version, but want to tune in next month? Save the Date:  Wednesday, February 17th @ 3 pm PST //  5 pm  CDT // 6 pm EST for #3Wedu broadcast #2!

What *IS* Innovation? Tell us. The CFP for OLC Innovate 2016 (#OLCinnovate) is OPEN!

What *IS* innovation?

This is the FIRST question the Online Learning Consortium (OLC) co-chairs, Karen VignarePaige McDonald and I, asked each other as we started to organize the *NEW* OLC Innovate Conference (#OLCinnovate). Innovation is a BIG word. It means so many different things, to so many different people. Before putting out the call and promoting the #OLCInnovate conference (happening April 20-22, 2016 in  New Orleans, LA), we thought carefully about who we wanted to join the planning team and how to design a conference experience to live up to the “hype” of the word INNOVATE. This conference was formed to merge the best ideas of blended learning (from #blend15) and emerging technologies for online learning (from #et4online); however we expect this meeting in NOLA — OLC Innovate 2016 — to be SO MUCH MORE! Thanks to our AMAZING #OLCInnovate Steering Committee (Tw-shout outs HERE and HERE) we support to hash out what innovation means for the program tracks, developed thoughtful session types for program delivery/format, and, we hope, this conference will model the learning design we all strive for at our institutions and organizations.

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So WHY should you attend #OLCinnovate 2016? [What’s in it for me? you ask.]

  • Advancing learning requires continuous visionary leadership from all disciplines
  • Connecting with multiple stakeholders (i.e. learners, educators, administrators, trainers, researchers, administrators, faculty, policy-makers, designers, and industry leaders) to strategize about the evolving needs at our institutions and organizations
  • Sharing learning and development ideas for all levels – K-12, higher education, & industry
  • Implementing solution-based approaches to learning design, support, and structure
  • Researching and developing evidence-based practices for learning is now more critical than ever.

Our #OLCinnovate planning team thinks this conference is a great opportunity to bring ideas, perspectives, research, and practices to the table to truly support innovation in education. The program tracks are structured around areas we all face with learning and development in K-12, higher education, and industry:

  • Workforce Innovation – connections from K-12 to higher ed to the workforce, curriculum to meet industry needs, partnerships for learning & work
  • Structural Innovation – systemic challenges, organization of education, learning spaces, partnerships between educators & technology solutions
  • Pedagogical Innovation – course & program approaches, methods, design, assessment models, etc.
  • Challenging Barriers to Innovation – digital divide, OER, Open Access, sharing evidence, ethical research collaborations, opportunities and areas for learning growth
  • Propose Your Own Topic – Tell us what YOU think innovation IS or what is missing!

Extend_OLCinnovate_Dec2

The call for proposals (CFP) is OPEN until November 9 December 2, 2015 

Program Format (Session Types) include:

  1. Conversations That Work – why have a panel, when you can facilitate a discussion on the topic with others in the room? Think of questions, discussion prompts, and ideas you want to chat about for this 45-minute session.
  2. Emerging Ideas – Forget the “traditional poster session” we want you to share your practice, research, and work-in-progress ideas in 10-15 minutes to get ideas, feedback, and suggestions during this networking event with both on-site & virtual attendees.
  3. Innovation Labs – 5-minute chat about the concept/idea; 20-minute demonstration; 20-minute applied skills for learning, technology, research, design, or other.
  4. Research Highlights & Trends – 15-minute presentation on your original research; abstract due in November; final, full paper due January 31, 2016 with the potential to be invited to a special issue of the Online Learning journal.
  5. Workshops – these are interactive 90-minute sessions with valuable take-away learning outcomes for participants (free to all conference participants).
  6. Education Sessions – a 45-minute lecture about an idea/concept with 5-10 minutes for Q & A at the end.

There are a number of helpful tips provided on the CFP page; however if you have questions or needs, I would be happy to support you with your proposal development/submission. It is getting the right PEOPLE and VOICES to the table that adds value to any learning and development experience. Please help us invite of institutional stakeholders from education (K-12 and higher ed), and industry (technology, design, L & D, and corporate training) to #OLCinnovate. Share this blog post with your peers, and tell me who the #OLCinnovate planning team should reach out to or invite. Thanks!

SUBMIT A PROPOSAL FOR OLC INNOVATE 2016!

Upcoming announcements of other #OLCinnovate program features, speakers, highlights, and are coming soon… stay tuned for more updates!