Curriculum T.B.D. with #rhizo15

From A Practical Guide to Rhizo15: “Rhizomatic learning is one story for how we can think about learning and teaching in a complex world.” Dave Cormier (@davecormier) has been thinking “in the rhizo” for a while and expressing ideas of the community as curriculum for teaching and learning. Cormier (2011) believes a curriculum for a course can be created in time, while a course is happening, specifically  “… to be rhizomatic involves creating a context, maybe some boundaries, within which a conversation can grow.”  

Sometimes learning can be messy. The rhizome concept is often uncertain as it maps in any direction, starts at any point, and grows or spreads with experimentation within a context. From this idea and others shared at the #ALN14 keynote (Pasquini, 2014), I gathered a number of valuable ideas to shape learning contracts for my own students and encouraging learners to map their own ways of knowing and evaluations (Brubaker, 2010). This talk directly impacted a new course I am teaching this term. Much of the content needed life infused into it, and learners did not seem connected to ideas for effective training and development facilitation from the previous iteration. I turned to my learners to ask them to make meaning and apply these concepts to practical situations, workplace experiences, and relevant examples they might encounter. From the class discussions, curation of readings, and developments of training/instruction, a number of my learners felt more empowered and felt as though they were part of their learning process. That being said – it does not mean things were clean and easy. There were a few bumps along the way; however this process of evaluating the learning structure helped me consider the process of knowing and supporting a collaborative curriculum down the road.

Based on my own interest in learning, and the hashtag (#) map of #rhizo15 conversation, I figured #rhizo15 would be a great place to connect and explore this concept further. [Thanks for recommending Socioviz to meet & greet with the community, Dave. Great idea!]

rhizo15hash

 

If you did not hear great things about the conversations, questions, and sharing from the #rhizo14 group – then you must have lived under an Internet rock last year. The #rhizo14 community often shared a number of valuable insights and resources. Although I tried to play in the sandbox with this active, online community, something got in the way of my participation (I’m looking at you dissertation). I am looking forward to the #rhizo15 camp that officially kicks off on April 15th for 6 weeks o’ fun as the participants build the curriculum. Here’s to playing in the unknown and building our learning out with fresh perspectives and gentle pushes from the #rhizo15 learning network.

Interested in joining the #rhizo15 fun? Here’s a few ways you can engage:

 

References

Brubaker, N. D. (2010). Negotiating authority by designing individualized grading contracts. Studying Teacher Education, 6(3), 257-267.

Cormier, D. (2011, November 5). Rhizomatic Learning – why we teach? Dave’s Educational Blog. Retrieved from http://davecormier.com/edblog/2011/11/05/rhizomatic-learning-why-learn/

Pasquini, L. A. (2014, October 31). Dave Cormier: Rhizomatic Learning – The Community is the Curriculum. The 2014 Annual Online Learning Consortium Conference (#ALN14), Orlando, FL. Retrieved from https://storify.com/laurapasquini/davecormier-s-aln14-keynote-twitter-notes

 

Twitter to Enhance Learning & Performance

Twitter provides the opportunity to have micro-conversations in 140 characters or less. This social media platform has been repurposed by a number of educators for workplace learning. Twitter is not the only form of professional development available and you do not have to tweet to learn.  That being said, an increasing number of educators have repurposed and remixed Twitter for work learning and performance. You would be surprised what 140 characters can do to create community and interaction online. A number of grassroots initiatives have developed for educators to consider Twitter as part of their professional development plans for informal learning, scholarly development, and shared practices. For me, the last seven years spent on Twitter has been invaluable. This platform continues to provide an open, informal learning space to collaborate and banter with a community of educators. Thanks for that, Larry.

Twitter Bird in the Lattice

Flickr photo c/o Brian Kopp

Twitter is really the “water-cooler” for educators to share news, post reports/trends, read the news, review research, ask questions, gather information, and curate knowledge. Educators are increasingly expressing ideas and linking to relevant websites, videos, articles, images, etc. related the workforce.  This commentary and resources were shared for my own learners and other training participants who want to “get started” with workplace learning and performance – so I welcome your shared suggestions for helpful Twitter resources and tips in the comments below.

The Twitter Basics:

Hashtags & Backchannels

GotHashtag

Hashtag: A symbol used in Twitter messages, the # symbol, used to identify keywords or topics in a Tweet. The hashtag was an organic creation by Twitter users as a way to categorize Twitter messages and link keywords posted on Twitter. Besides a current event or pop culture reference, Twitter has been an essential part of the conference tool kit to support sharing on the backchannel. You no longer have to be in-person to engage in the workshops, presented talks, or round table discussions via the live experience. There’s now a full stream of activity created around single hashtags for professional development and workplace learning events.

Here are just a few Hashtags to SEARCH and Follow:  

  • #AcWri (academic writing)
  • #highered
  • #digped
  • #edtech and #onlinelearning
  • #phdchat and #gradchat and #SAdoc
  • #Open and #OER and #openaccess
  • #acadv (academic advising)
  • #StudentAffairs and #sachat
  • And MORE!
  • P.D. hashtags related to your field and conferences, e.g. 2015 Education and Ed Tech Conferences [Psssst… you can add to it if  I’m missing any!]

What Is a Twitter Chat and How to Make the Most of ItTwitter chats are threaded discussions using a hashtag to dialogue about a specific subject.Twitter chats are linked conversations via a single hashtag that participants can search, follow, and include in their own Tweet as they respond during the Twitter chat time. Twitter chats are similar to online chats, forums, or discussion boards; however they are often synchronous and active during a designated date and time. The hashtag for many chats continue past the “live” event on Twitter for others who want to share and engage. Some Twitter chats guide the discussion or have open topics central theme, while others Twitter chats are moderated in a structured question-response format.

Other Twitter Tips & Resources:

Checklist: Selecting Technology for Learning

With so many possibilities for digital learning, selecting media and technologies for appropriate course instruction is a very complex process. Although there are a wide range of options in the ed tech realm, pedagogical considerations should always come first. Instructors should reflect on the learning objective and desired outcomes for their subject matter before identifying identifying technological applications for the course.

The SECTIONS model, developed by Tony Bates (2015), is a pedagogical framework for determining what technology, specifically how this technology will be appropriate for instructional approaches. This might include identifying and determining pedagogical characteristics of text, audio, video, computing, and social media. With this framework, Bates (2015) asks five critical questions for teaching and learning for technology and media selection:

  1. Who are the learners?
  2. What are the desired learning outcomes from the teaching?
  3. What instructional strategies will be employed to facilitate the learning outcomes?
  4. What are the unique educational characteristics of each medium/technology, and how well do these match the learning and teaching requirements?
  5. What resources are available?

In thinking about the interplay of technology and learning, higher education courses will need to consider how this design process is developed. In this book chapter, Bates shared an alternative approach to the ADDIE model for instructional design – Learning + Technology Development Process Model (Hibbitts & Travin, 2015).

Learning + Technology Development Process Model (Hibbitts & Travin, 2015)

Regardless of the model for learning design, it will be important to assess how technology will impact the pedagogy. The SECTIONS model is an effective framework to best inform instructors when deciding what media or technology to use for face-to-face, online or blended learning courses:

  • Students
  • Ease of use
  • Costs
  • Teaching functions (including the affordances of different media)
  • Interaction
  • Organizational issues
  • Networking
  • Security and privacy

I would encourage you to utilize Bate’s (2015) Questions to Guide Media Selection and Use, to support your learning design when consider technology adoption for teaching. This open, shared educational resource will provide you with a broader reflection on issues and considerations for your digital pedagogy. Here is an abbreviated checklist for selecting technologies for learning I adopted for a learning module. It was developed for faculty who would like to consider the broader issues for teaching with technology, and how to navigate this course planning process for digital/media inclusions.

Checklist: Selecting Technology for Learning

STUDENTS

___Review accessibility mandate or policy of your institution, department or program.

___Determine demographics of the students and appropriateness of technology.

___Consider student access to technologies, both off campus and on campus.

___Determine digital skills and digital readiness of your students with learning expectations.

___Justify students’ purchases of a new technology component (if needed) for learning.

___Assess prior learning approaches & how technology can support student learning.

EASE OF USE

____Select the technology for ease of use by instructor and students.

____Identify technology that is reliable for teaching and learning.

____Verify the technology set up, maintenance and upgrade is simple.

____Confirm the technology provider/company is stable to support hardware or software use

____Outline strategies to secure any digital teaching materials you create should the organization providing the software or service cease to exist.

____Locate technical & professional support, both in terms of the technology and with respect to the design of materials.

____Determine technologies to best support edits and updates of learning materials.

____Outline how the new technology will change teaching with to get better results

____Assess risks and potential challenges for using this technology for teaching and learning.

COST & YOUR TIME

____Consider media selection by the length of time and ease of use during course development.

____Factor the time it takes to prepare lectures, and determine if development of digital learning materials will save time and encourage interaction with students (online and/or face-to-face)

____ Investigate if there is extra funding for innovative teaching or technology applications; if so, determine how to best use that funding for learning technologies.

____Assess the local support from your institution from instructional designers and media professionals for media design and development

____Identify open educational resources for the course, e.g. an open textbook, online videos, library page of articles, or other potential OERs.

TEACHING & EDUCATIONAL FACTORS

___Determine the desired learning outcomes from the teaching in terms of content and skills.

___Design instructional strategies to facilitate the learning outcomes.

___Outline unique pedagogical characteristics appropriate for this course, in terms of content presentation and skill development, specifically for:

____Textbook, readings, or other online text materials;

____Audio, such as podcasts, streaming audio from news, etc.;

____ Video, such as slide presentations, lectures, tutorials, and screencasts; and

____Social media, such as blogs, wikis, microblogs, photo sharing, curation, etc.

____Plan learning aspects that must be face-to-face (in-person or online).

INTERACTION

___Identify the skills for development and interactions that are most to determine the best type of media or technology to facilitate this learning.

___Determine the kinds of kinds of interaction to produce a good balance between student comprehension and student skills development.

___Estimate the amount of time the instructor will be interacting personally or online with students, and the type of medium for this interaction. 

ORGANIZATIONAL ISSUES

____Determine institutional support in choosing and using media or technology for teaching.

____Identify if the institutional support is easily accessible, helpful, and will meet the needs for the learning technologies for the course.

____Determine if there is funding available to ‘buy me out’ for a semester and/or to fund a teaching assistant so I can concentrate on designing a new course or revising an existing course.

____Locate institutional funding or resources for any learning technology or media production.

____Review the ‘standard’ technologies, practices and procedures for teaching and learning, to verify requirements for utilizing institutional technology resources, i.e. the learning management system, lecture capture system, etc.

____Determine if the institution will support trying a new technological approach to learning, and will support innovative media or digital design.

NETWORKING

____Outline the importance for learners to network beyond a course, i.e. with subject specialists, professionals in the field, and relevant people in the community

____Identify how the course or student learning can benefit from networking and learning from external connections.

____Determine the appropriate network and/or social media space to integrate for your learners to network with each other and connect with external community members.

____Integrate these networking mediums with standard course technology.

____Delegate responsibility for its design and/or administration to students or learners. 

SECURITY AND PRIVACY

___Determine the student information you are obliged to keep private and secure.

___Identify the institutional policies for security and privacy for teaching & learning.

___Outline potential risks and challenges of using a particular technology where institutional policies concerning privacy could easily be breached.

___Identify who at your institution could best advise you on security and privacy concerns, with regards to learning and teaching technologies.

___Itemize the areas of teaching and learning, if any, available only to students registered in the course.

___Identify the types of technologies to best restrict or limit access to course materials (if any) for my registered students.

 

Interested in reviewing your own learning design further? DOWNLOAD the Checklist: Selecting Technology for Learning

Reference:

Bates, A. W. (2015). Chapter 8: Choosing and using media in education: The SECTIONS model. From Teaching in a Digital Age. A Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. Retrieved from http://opentextbc.ca/teachinginadigitalage/

Hibbitts, P. D., & Travin, M. T. (2015). Learning + technology development process model.

ACPA Digital Task Force: Report and Higher Ed Live Discussion

Last year I was invited to join the ACPA Digital Task Force – so you might have read a few blogs (here, here, here, & here) about my involvement or tweeting about the issues we were working on using the hashtag #ACPAdigital

The Role of Digital Technology in Higher Education.
Direct Video Link http://videos.myacpa.org/the-role-of-digital-technology-in-higher-education

The former ACPA President, Kent Porterfield, in conjunction with the ACPA Board of Governors and International Office established the ACPA Digital Task Force (#ACPAdigital). The #ACPAdigital group, led by Ed Cabellon and Tony Doody, was charged with “understanding how to advance the application of digital technology in higher education, informed by student affairs scholarship and practice, to further enhance ACPA’s influence and its role as a leader in higher education in the information age.

taskforce_draft

Last week ACPA shared the Draft Report and Recommendations document, which included our contributions made over the last nine months. Each sub-group of the taskforce researched and/or worked on various projects to provide insights for student affairs educators in the follow areas:

  • Scholarship and Research
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Organization Infrastructure of ACPA

Here are the emergent themes from the#ACPAdigital report:

  1. Integrate digital technologies that advance teaching and learning within higher education.
  2. Design training and development opportunities to enhance college student educators’ use of digital technologies.
  3. Invest in the creation and dissemination of research and scholarship in digital technologies.
  4. Develop the infrastructure and resources appropriate to ensure sustainability and relevance in digital technologies.
  5. Establish and grow strategic collaborations and partnerships to capitalize on existing resources for higher education.
  6. Ensure equal opportunity to the resources necessary for full engagement with digital technologies.

Please read and review the FULL REPORT, and provide any comments you have to Tony or Ed. We would love to get your feedback, questions, and thoughts on the draft.

UPDATED (April 1, 2015):

Learn more about this report from the Higher Ed Live show (4/1/15) as the #ACPAdigital Task Force chairs discuss our work, the draft report, and how digital will impact student affairs educators on The Future of Digital Education show. Please follow @HigherEdLive & all the tweets from #HigherEdLive and #ACPAdigital. READ: The show “Notes” (tweets) on Storify. Or WATCH the recording here:

Blended Learning Interactions #Blendkit2015

Thanks to Kelvin Thompson & his crew for the invitation to join the 2nd week of the University of Central Florida‘s Blendkit Course (#Blendkit2015): Blended Interactions

Week #2’s readings [Blendkit- Chapter 2] discussed the role of the faculty in blended learning environments, specifically with regards to facilitation of learner interactions. Instructors have the ability to encourage self-directed  and connected interactions in their blended learning courses. Suggestions from the readings include considerations for the atelier, concierge, and curatorial learning models to empower students.  It is critical to outline roles and responsibilities for expected engagement and to guide intentional interactions among learners.

Blended-learning1

In the open Q & A session this week with Dr. Leslee D’Amato-Kubiet and myself, we discuss technology-mediated interactions in blended settings, but more importantly the organization, design, and considerations for encouraging meaningful interactions among our students AND ideas to explore potential strategies for creating blended interactions.

Questions

  1. What are some best practices to generate high levels of student-to-student support? How does one put some of the burden for performance support into a peer-support model where they help each other? Does badging for this coaching help? What are some things to avoid (like competition)?
  2. How can I know for certain that my students are comfortable in an e learning environment. If I sense that some of them are just not so comfortable, how can I address their concerns while maximizing the electronic components of my hybrid course? And promote online interaction?
    1. Every student has a different level of comfort with self-expression in a course environment. What are some strategies for eliciting student expression in a blended course design?
  3. In which aspects should you pay attention as a teacher to determine which technological tools work best looking for minimal or guided learning? What skills should have the teacher to decide what role (atelier, concierge, curatorial, etc.) taken with their students?
    1. Does class size influence your decisions and expectations for student-to-student and student-to-instructor interactions?
  4. Student-to-Instructor Interactions – Is it “bad” to have canned comments and replies for grade feedback, discussion posts, and course mail?
  5. As a K-12 administrator, I have concerns that the mastery model that blended learning requires will be embedded at our level but not translate to higher ed. Can you give your thoughts?

Tweets from Monday’s (3/9/15) #Blendkit2015 via Storify.

blendkit

More About #Blendkit2015: The BlendKit Course is a set of subject matter neutral, open educational resources related to blended learning developed by Dr. Kelvin Thompson and available for self-study or for group use. Periodically, these materials will also be used as the basis for a facilitated open, online course. 

The goal of the BlendKit Course is to provide assistance in designing and developing your blended learning course via a consideration of key issues related to blended learning and practical step-by-step guidance in helping you produce actual materials for your blended course (i.e., from design documents through creating content pages to peer review feedback at your own institution).

Want to join the Blendkit Course or follow along with the course content?

Rethinking Office Hours

Office hours were designed to offer a space and place for learners to meet with their faculty. The practice of holding a “office hours” at every higher education campus, and even within a single department, varies drastically. Some institutions/departments set guidelines, whereas others see this as a service expectation that will automatically be assumed by the faculty member.

silly questions

Image c/o Flame @ KZK

The basic idea of faculty office hours was to carve out time to be available for your students. This set time each was is designated for the instructor to be in a physical, set space to offer support and assistance for courses, research, etc. In reality we know that only “a small number of students take advantage of office hours, [and] typically those who show up are not those who most need to be there (Weimer, 2015a). With increased use of technological communications, our students prefer to send a quick electronic message (email, LMS message, discussion board, text, tweet, etc.), to ask a question, seek advice, or get help.  So how do we “meet and reach” our students who are often juggling more than just school and cannot make the typical “office hour” on campus?  How do we make getting support more convenient for both the instructor and the student?

As an online instructor, I have experimented with a few approaches  the last couple of semesters. Although I work with online, adult learners – I think these strategies could also be useful for other faculty who instruct face-to-face (F2F) or blended learning environments.

A Few Ideas to Rethink Office Hours:

  1. Offer a standard “Office Hour” time slot at least 1-2x per week. This might be the day before assignments are due, or perhaps an evening hour after the typical 9-5 work day. You can indicate availability in your own office, by Skype/phone, IM, or via a web conferencing platform. You decide!
  2. Identify YOUR preferred mode of contact/communication. Let them know HOW and WHEN you will be checking and responding to their messages. Be sure to consider your own communication workflow – then share these expectations for your learners about your preferred protocol for related course communications.  Here are the best ways (in order) for students to contact me:
    • EMAIL: This is BY FAR the recommended method. My students know they will get a response from me within 24-48 hours by e-mail, and they are to include their course name, section, and ID in messages. This also allows me to track and keep a record of our conversations in a student file I save in Outlook.
    • Skype/Google Chat: A few of them have also utilized Skype/Google Chat for a quick IM if I am Available (“green”) online.
    • Bb Learn Messaging/Email: I have decided to close the LMS messages on Bb Learn this term, to organize all incoming inquiries from students into my institutional email account.
    • Google Voice: I use a number set up here as my primary office number. Students have used it to leave web voicemails and/or text messages every now and then.
    • Twitter: I have also welcomed the odd Tweet here and there – but often these get tossed into another space for more than 140-characters. More so this is used to share news, information & articles via the course hashtags e.g. #LTEC4440, #LTEC4121, #LTEC4070 and #LTEC3010
  3. Require 1:1 meetings early in the semester (Weimer, 2015b). If possible, have a 1:1 meeting planning in your course schedule to discuss a final project/assignment. You can use this time to check in and allow your students to ask question. This introduces students to your “space” and often encourages them to follow up. Pro Tip: This takes time and organization for your own schedule. Only consider 1:1’s if you can manage it (30 students or less recommended), and if there is a specific purpose within your course design and learning objectives.
  4. Offer class meetings for group advising and support. Provide semi-regular meetings for your students. Ask your learners when a good class meeting time is via Doodle poll to help establish most available times during the semester to host these meetings. My courses often met in the evenings between 6-8 pm and online in a GoToTraining or Adobe Connect room. These meetings were designed to offer information, updates, and a bite-sized instructional piece for my learners. In previous F2F courses, I had offered this sort of “meet up” after a campus event, in a seminar room, or even an off-campus coffee shop. For my graduate students in smaller classes, we would even conduct peer-review sessions in Google+ hangouts. Include an agenda for the meeting with the topics that will be covered and open discussion. Always solicit questions from your students in advance & leave time for Q & A at the end.
    • Pro Tip: Take questions you received from emails and include them into the class meeting advising sessions. Often learners might be afraid to ask during an open Q & A time, so “plant the question seed.” Students learn from other learners’ questions.
    • My incentives to attend our online (non-required) course meetings = advice on projects/assignments, helpful “how to” or demonstrations, and guest speakers (A BIG thanks goes out to Jess, Josie & Paul this term!).
    • Offer a recording and class notes for those who cannot attend, but want the supplemental information and resources.
  5. Try offering “on demand” office hours. I use helpful scheduling websites with my Google Calendar to set up student meetings. Both youcanbook.me and calendly offer easy ways for learners to schedule 15-, 30- or 60-minute meetings, depending on my own personal work/travel schedule. Example of the calendly appointment scheduler below:

Step ONE

Screen Shot 2015-02-28 at 6.26.18 PM

 

Step TWOsched

 

Step THREE

book
 Step FOUR

Screen Shot 2015-02-28 at 6.51.51 PM

  • ProTip: Be sure have your students identify the purpose of the meeting. E.g. I ask, “What specific issue you would YOU like to resolve at our meeting?
  • Dedicated meeting location: Since I lecture online, I decided to keep all my office hour meetings in a set GoToMeeting space that is standard for all my courses. This is included on the course syllabus, class announcements, and, most importantly, it is an accessible location – students can use their web or phone:

LTEC Virtual Office Hours with Dr. Pasquini” Please join my meeting from your computer, tablet or smartphone. https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/981968477

  • You can also dial in using your phone.United States (Long distance): +1 (213) 289-0012
    Access Code: 981-968-477 

I am still evaluating my own office hour approaches for my distance learners, so please feel free to share your strategies with me. How do you support your learners? What ways have you encouraged your students to connect with you for office hours? Do you have suggestions that I might want to consider for online office hours? Post your suggestions below!

References

Weimer, M. (2015a, February 17). Office hours alternative resonates with students. Faculty Focus. Retrieved from http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-and-learning/office-hours-alternative-resonates-students/

Weimer, M. (2015b, February 18). Office hours redux. Faculty Focus. Retrieved from http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-professor-blog/office-hours-redux/ 

How is social media being researched to support student development/success in higher education beyond the “classroom”?

I recently curated a  reading list of literature/research on social media and technology use, specifically outside the higher ed “classroom” for a colleague at Niagara University, Dr. John Sauter. For his Sociology of Higher Education course, John wanted to share readings that demonstrate how social media and technology are being utilized outside formalized learning, and provide more information beyond the Social Media Resources [from the WNY Advising group] the practical guides/strategies. A recent prompt from my #edusocmedia friend Ove, made me think that this short list should be shared and hopefully expanded upon – enter this blog post.

Screen Shot 2015-02-22 at 12.02.04 PMImage c/o mkhmarketing on Flickr

In searching online, you will find that there are no shortage of “how to” and “social media strategy” publications – which often bridge the marketing, communications, education, business, and student affair disciplines. A growing number of  bloggers also share suggestions for social media use, community development, and campus engagement; however  my focus was to find recent RESEARCH in post-secondary education that examined how social media and emerging technologies are impacting student life, support, and success outside the “classroom” (face-to-face, online & blended learning) environments.

To consider social media perceptions and use outside of formal learning environments, it is important to gain insight from recent studies around learning in higher education with technologies, including:

Junco, R., Heiberger, G., & Loken, E. (2011). The effect of Twitter on college student engagement and grades. Journal of computer assisted learning, 27(2), 119-132.

Junco, R. (2012). Too much face and not enough books: The relationship between multiple indices of Facebook use and academic performance.Computers in Human Behavior, 28(1), 187-198.

Junco, R., Elavsky, C. M., & Heiberger, G. (2013). PuttingTwitter to the test: Assessing outcomes for student collaboration, engagement and successBritish Journal of Educational Technology, 44(2), 273-287.

Junco, R. (2015). Student class standing, Facebook use, and academic performance. Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, 36, 18-29.

Muñoz, C. L., & Towner, T. (2011). Back to the “wall”: How to use Facebook in the college classroom. First Monday, 16(12).

Roblyer, M. D., McDaniel, M., Webb, M., Herman, J., & Witty, J. V. (2010). Findings on Facebook in higher education: A comparison of college faculty and student uses and perceptions of social networking sites. Internet and Higher Education, 13(3), 134-140.

Rodriguez, J. E. (2011). Social media use in higher education: Key areas to consider for educators. MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 7(4).

Silius, K., Kailanto, M., & Tervakari, A-M. (2011). Evaluating the quality of social media in an educational context. International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning, 6(3), 21-27.

Wakefield, J. S., Warren, S. J., Alsobrook, M., & Knight, K. A. (2013). What do they really think? Higher education students’ perceptions of using Facebook and Twitter in formal higher education learning. International Journal of Social Media and Interactive Learning Environments1(4), 330-354.

**Shout out to Josie Ahlquist for also sharing a wealth of resources on her Reference List page related to this topic as well and more related to student development theory and youth culture in media!**

My focus for this class reading list, was to find recent (2011 forward) peer-reviewed publications that share implications and findings from research on how social media impacts support/success in higher ed beyond the instructional context. Yes. Student affairs, academic advisors, and the like, in student support areas of higher ed, ARE educators – however social media/technology use for learning without the weight of the grade “carrot” does impact and influence adoption/use. In looking around, I found a number of recent literature reviews and compilations that look at social media in higher education – here are a select few I thought I would share:

Davis III, C. H., Deil-Amen, R., Rios-Aguilar, C., & Gonzalez Canche, M. S. (2012). Social Media in Higher Education: A literature review and research directions.

Hew, K. F., & Cheung, W. S. (2013). Use of Web 2.0 technologies in K-12 and higher education: The search for evidence-based practice. Educational Research Review, 9, 47-64.

Lewis, B., & Rush, D. (2013). Experience of developing Twitter-based communities of practice in higher education. Research in Learning Technology21.

Rios-Aguilar, C., Canché, G., Sacramento, M., Deil-Amen, R., & Davis III, C. H. (2012). The role of social media in community colleges.

Tarantino, K., McDonough, J., & Hua, M. (2013). Effects of student engagement with social media on student learning: A review of literature. The Journal of Technology in Student Affairs.

Tess, P. A. (2013). The role of social media in higher education classes (real and virtual)–A literature reviewComputers in Human Behavior29(5), A60-A68.

For my own interest, I decided to conduct a preliminary literature search to determine “How is social media being researched to support student development/success in higher education beyond the “classroom”?  This is NOT a comprehensive list, but more of a primer to initiate a more comprehensive search for recent (2011 forward) scholarly publications involving research on this topic:

Al-Harrasi, A. S., & Al-Badi, A. H. (2014). The Impact Of Social Networking: A Study Of The Influence Of Smartphones On College Students. Contemporary Issues in Education Research (CIER), 7(2), 129-136.

Birnbaum, M. G. (2013). The fronts students use: Facebook and the standardization of self-presentations. Journal of College Student Development54(2), 155-171.

Chen, B., & Bryer, T. (2012). Investigating instructional strategies for using social media in formal and informal learning. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 13(1), 87-104.

Cheung, C. M., Chiu, P. Y., & Lee, M. K. (2011). Online social networks: Why do students use Facebook? Computers in Human Behavior, 27(4), 1337-1343.

DeAndrea, D. C., Ellison, N. B., LaRose, R., Steinfield, C., & Fiore, A. (2011). Serious social media: On the use of social media for improving students’ adjustment. Internet and Higher Education, 15, 15-23.

Fuller, M., & Pittarese, T. (2012, June). Effectively communicating with university students using social media: a study of social media usage patterns. In 45th Annual Conference June 10-14, 2012 (p. 46).

Graham, M. (2014). Social Media as a tool for increased student participation and engagement outside the classroom in higher education. Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice, 2(3).

Jacobsen, W. C., & Forste, R. (2011). The wired generation: Academic and social outcomes of electronic media use among university studentsCyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 14(5), 275-280.

Lin, M. F. G., Hoffman, E. S., & Borengasser, C. (2013). Is social media too social for class? A case study of Twitter use. TechTrends, 57(2), 39-45.

Lou, L. L., Yan, Z., Nickerson, A., & McMorris, R. (2012). An examination of the reciprocal relationship of loneliness and Facebook use among first-year college students. Journal of Educational Computing Research, 46(1), 105-117.

Joosten, T., Pasquini, L. A., & Harness, L. (2013). Guiding social media in our institutions. Planning for Higher Education – Society for College and University Planners. 41(2), 1-11.

Mastrodicasa, J., & Metellus, P. (2013). The impact of social media on college students. Journal of College & Character, 14(1), 21-29.

O’Brien, O., & Glowatz, M. (2013). Utilising a social networking site as an academic tool in an academic environment: student development from information-sharing to collaboration and innovation (ICI). AISHE-J: The All Ireland Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, 5(3).

Pettijohn, T. F., LaPiene, K. E., & Horting, A. L. (2012). Relationships between Facebook intensity, friendship contingent self-esteem, and personality in US college students. Cyberpsychology, 6(1), 1-7.

Ternes, J. A. (2013). Using social media to engage students in campus life. (Doctoral dissertation, Kansas State University).

Sponcil, M., & Gitimu, P. (2013). Use of social media by college students: relationship to communication and self-concept.  Journal of Technology Research, 4, 1-13.

Wang, Z., Tcherneve, J. M., & Solloway, T.  (2012).  A dynamic longitudinal examination of social media use, needs, and gratifications among college students.  Computers in Human Beheavior, 28(5), 1829-1839.

If you have published any articles and/or have contributions for research in this area – please add to the list! Post any publication references in the comments or reach out to me to discuss further.  I suspect this quest will continue, and it will also need a few collaborators to be successful. Are you interested in digging into the research to learn more about HOW we are SUPPORTING students in higher education using social media beyond formalized learning structures?  Let’s talk – so we can move forward in understanding the research lay of the land.

Semester Reflections & What I’ve Learned [Fall 2014]

Wow. My first semester as a Lecturer and teaching ALL online classes is DONE! First and foremost – I am glad to have all my grades posted. {For real! After 2,400 hours of video watching, I can say I learned a lot from my #LTEC4121 class – and I had a talented group of students this term.}

FinishedGrading

Along with other projects (e.g. research, writing, editing, OLC Certificate, presenting, conference, and consulting), I am glad to see the semester and 2014 come to an end – or at least a pause over the holiday break. This academic term has been fun and challenging for me as I move all my instructional experiences to the online environment. My own teaching philosophy centers on technology-enhanced pedagogies that foster student–centered learning environments. Over this semester, I put a great deal of thought to how I design learning experiences and support my students online in a more meaningful and authentic manner. This term, I constantly made edits and improvements to the online courses I was teaching to help foster real-world experiences and provide opportunities for engagement. I really wanted my students to take what they are learning in the online classroom and apply these concepts to their own workforce learning and performance. With whatever technological platform and, more importantly the planned pedagogy, my primary role in these classes were to facilitate learning by motivating, instigating and supporting my students as they work through their modules and projects.

From this semester, I shared some of my personal reflections for lecturing with the GSTEP program last month:

To be honest – there are more than just 10 lessons I’ve learned. Not everything has been great this semester. There has been a great deal of stress and frustration in lecturing with someone else’s course materials, and considering how to best support the learners’ needs. I have been constantly improving functions of not only the course delivery, but also the content in the modules to consider how to get students to reach the course learning outcomes. Although it has been a busy semester, I have appreciated the hands-on lessons I have learned and applied to my online instruction and support for my students. Learning about learning, and evaluation of the curriculum supports our students. Stay tuned for deeper reflections in an upcoming blog post after I go through my course evaluations, LTEC feedback forms, and review of my course design from Fall 2014 for the next semester.

For time management and scheduling,  I learned a great deal about the need to develop my own personal workflow. Although I have been “working remotely” and I have a great deal of online work experience, my new role has got me thinking about what it means to be productive when working from home. Work-life balance is key. With a number of involvement and projects, I have had to think about how these are managed and prioritized. I believe my scheduling and task-management has improved over the term (when I am not traveling for business/personal obligations #LessonLearned), and I feel as though I have mastered my grading and instructional flow with online teaching. Thanks to some additional motivational tools for time and fitness, I have improved my time-on-task ability for work projects and increased my running/walking mileage (thanks Todoist.com, Asana, #FitBit & RunKeeper).

Most importantly,  I have learned the value of being an active participant in my networks. My mom was concerned about my social contact with others now that I teach online. I laughed – and told her that I still have just as much (or maybe more) contact with others. Although I am not an 8-5 worker on campus, I have made a point to stay connected to UNT and get involved in various things (e.g. UNT Faculty Writing group, GSTEP support,  Alternative Service Break advisor, and LT department meetings/projects). In my online work, there are a number of virtual teaming projects and collaborations that keep me quite engaged and social (e.g. #ACPAdigital task force, NACADA meetings, OLC conference planning, and other community interactions). Finally, I have sought out new opportunities to grow and learn professionally to focus on research scholarship, instructional design, and strategic organizational planning (e.g. RA position with @veletsianos, CLEAR instructional course design work, and external consulting/training initiatives).

Thanks to a number of you who have been there for me this academic term. Your ear, your advice, and your support have been greatly appreciated during my transition period. Thank you!

The Technology Test Kitchen & #et4online CFP Deadline

The Technology Test Kitchen (TTK) was developed at the Online Learning Consortium‘s #blend14 event, and recently enhanced at #aln14.

What the heck is the TTK?

  1. A makerspace for sharing innovative tools and new media
  2. An open collaborative environment for hands-on exploration
  3. An engaging way to connect with your colleagues over emerging technology

 

how it works

The TTK ideas was created to bring faculty, instructional designers, researchers, and conferences participants together to get a hands-on experience with a variety of learning technologies. In the Test Kitchen, there are a number of “chefs” (volunteers who love applying media to learning) who are typically available to talk about design, discuss a “recipe” (a quick how-to guide for a platform, e.g. PDF Recipe Book from #blend14 is posted HERE), utilize apps, brainstorm curriculum strategies, introduce new media (hardware & software), and provide 1:1, hands-on sharing with learning technologies.

To learn more, check out this AMAZING video created by Angela Gunder (a.k.a. @adesinamedia):

For the 2015 #et4online conference, the TTK will be looking for chefs, like YOU, to actively work in the kitchen and demonstrate how to apply media to pedagogical practice.

CFP for Chefs

Interested in applying? Check out the Call for Proposals today for the TTK or any other program track. We would LOVE to review your proposal. The CFP closes on December 1, 2014.

Presence & Visibility With Scholarship #scholar14

Are you “present” online? Do you share your scholarship? Are you blogging about your research in the field? Can I find a slide deck of your last academic presentation on SlideShare? Have you tweeted about your academic writing lately (#acwri)?

Based on last week’s conversation in The Networked Scholars (#scholar14) MOOC – you probably should. Week 1 focused on Visibility, Presence & Branding – Check out the LIVE chat video and tweets. During the live chat discussion, Laura Czerniewicz reminded us that:

The challenge with online “presence” is that scholarship and research distribution is not shared equally – or at least not well represented online (based on the Web of Science documents):

This image and article left me with a number of questions for visibility and presence for scholars:

  • Why is the representation of scholarship skewed geographically?
  • What impact does this geographic distribution of knowledge have on our research disciplines?
  • How can we work to have more “market share” of knowledge in underrepresented areas of the globe?
  • Do the location of networking sharing services impact the voice of disciplines? Can this be neutralized/balanced?

Although the web has the potential to create a level playing field for scholarship participation, there still seems to be infrastructures and institutions in academia that prevent researchers from uploading content and sharing knowledge across geographic boundaries.

With the growth of digital scholarship and online knowledge sharing, it is critical that scholars engage in distribution of their research impact to their field. Through research identity management and citation tracking, scholars are able to specifically identify influence, share findings, access publications, and connect with academic peers for collaboration and further scholarly work:

Academics should utilize these emerging platforms to increase their influence and reach beyond traditional publishing forums. These researcher identification and citation tools are not “just for geeks,” but rather a growing expectation for scholarship development and publication notation. It is a critical time to rethink how research is produced, distributed, and acknowledged. Researcher impact tools, such as ORCID, Researcher ID, Scopus, and Google Scholar Citations, will help to identify citation influence and impact of knowledge for the field with respect to publication use. Social academic tools, such as Academia.edu and Mendeley, provide scholars a place to share their professional profile, links to research, and areas of research interest (Pasquini, Wakefield, Reed, & Allen, 2014).

It is important to consider where you will share your progress, publications, and work for your discipline. It also helps to organize your scholarly citations and publications. Where will you leave your digital scholarly footprint? How will you track your research impact? What do you want to be found online about your research?

Reference:

Pasquini, L. A., Wakefield, J. S., Reed, A., & Allen, J. M. (2014). Digital scholarship and impact factors: Methods and tools to connect your research. Proceedings of the 2014 AACE World Conference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, and Higher Education (ELEARN) in New Orleans, LA.