Insights from Course Blogs and Transformation of Learning for Positive Change

Technological Insights 

As a technological “geek”, I enjoyed reading my classmates’ blogs this semester as they discussed various technologies and how they would incorporate them into their own teaching and learning. The ideas of bringing mobile device pedagogy into a classroom and using technology to flip a classroom have really piqued my interest. What I learned from my classmates is that mobile devices can be used in a number of ways from employing smartphones as clickers, to having an entire class using I-pads. As one of my classmates struggled with getting the technology (hardware and software) to work while using I-pads in the classroom, I learned that it takes a community of learners (instructor, IT, and students) to not only support the technology, but also to have patience during the learning process. What I gained from my classmates about flipping the classroom, is that it is not an easy task, and that the process should begin slowly so that all stakeholders have time to adapt to the change in pedagogy. Creating power points and using rich multi-media to engage students requires the instructor to be well versed in pedagogical and technological skills.

Andragogical Insights 

Given the fact that everyone in our course is earning a doctoral degree in teaching and learning through an online methodology, I would surmise that we are the epitome of Knowles theory of andragogy. We are self-directed learners that come to the course with a desire to learn and with a myriad of experiences in the teaching field that we enjoy sharing with our fellow colleagues. As evidenced from our blogs and discussion boards, we have gone above and beyond the course requirements for our postings because we like to harvest new ideas that we can bring to our students.

Transformation of Learning for Positive Change 

Keeping up with new technological changes in the educational world is not an easy task. Using a blog to collaborate with other instructors who embrace new ways to use technology provides a great forum for an exchange of ideas and exposure to methodologies that could be incorporated into my own teaching and learning. Utilizing mobile technologies to foster engagement in my face-to-face classes is something I will surely incorporate into my teaching practices. My institution has been discussing running a pilot study using tablets—something I may now be interested in pursuing after learning more about it during this class. Using mobile devices along with a variety of other software programs may just provide a nice segue to flipping a class.

~ Sharon

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9 responses to “Insights from Course Blogs and Transformation of Learning for Positive Change

  1. Reblogged this on e-Roll Call Magazine and commented:
    Sharon,

    I would agree that our learning team has engaged and shared teaching tips and spark interest in exploring new technology, learning, and classroom practices that I have not previously considered for my classes. I believe that mLearning is going to bring many creative ideas that will require investigating to identify best andragogy practices to share and discuss with classroom practitioners. I look forward to getting actively involved in my discipline with adding to the literature of the SoTL.

    Mark B

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  2. Sharon,

    I would agree that our learning team has engaged and shared teaching tips and spark interest in exploring new technology, learning, and classroom practices that I have not previously considered for my classes. I believe that mLearning is going to bring many creative ideas that will require investigating to identify best andragogy practices to share and discuss with classroom practitioners. I look forward to getting actively involved in my discipline with adding to the literature of the SoTL.

    Mark B

    Like

  3. Hi Sharon,

    Yes, it does take a village approach to accepting and implementing technology successfully. I hope to one day be in a village!

    There are many things that this course presented that raised my awareness and piqued my interest, and I agree with you that mobile learning technologies in the classroom is one of them. I also had previously never really thought much about the ethical issues that surround technology, other than what we’ve discussed with our teenage boys about not sharing too much information, not posting anything that you wouldn’t want everyone to read, etc etc.

    In the past I have tried to think through ethical issues like cheating and plagiarism and how to help prevent it when I post things online or through the LMS for students, but that is as far as I had previously considered. In my online intro nutrition classes I always have students complain that they don’t get enough time to take the exams. A few students over the years have gone to my boss about it, but we hold our ground. There is no reason that an online class should be given more time to take an exam than the in-person class. In my experience the students that complain the loudest are the ones that have not prepared and are trying to look up the answers, or are the ESL students who probably should not be in an online course to begin with.

    Thanks for sharing this term! It’s been fun reading all the different technologies and approaches that you and the rest of our peers have written about in these blogs!

    Cecile

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  4. Sharon,
    I really hope that classmate of yours is doing better with flipping the class and incorporating all that technology. Judging by the reactions of the students in that class I would say that things are going much better for that instructor.

    It really does show that we are a community of learners. This has been a pretty strange journey. It has been an awesome experience and I think we have been changed in the process. Which of course is pretty cool since you realize this last course has also been about the role of change in higher education as well as technology.

    So with that in mind this is a fitting song.

    I look to the sea reflections in the waves spark my memory
    Some happy some sad
    I think of childhood friends and the dreams we had
    We live happily forever so the story goes
    But somehow we missed out on that pot of gold
    But we’ll try best that we can to carry on

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  5. Hey Jim, what great song for us at this juncture in our journey — We will “Carry On and Sail Away” towards our goal. ~ Sharon

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  6. Hi Cecile, I often struggle with the idea of timed tests in the LMS, especially as I get older and find that I need additional time to ponder over ideas in my head. Now, I may be older than most students; however, the average age at our institution is 32, not the typical 20 year old.  Still, I know that timed tests are often a complaint of many online students. To get around the issue of timing the tests, I make sure that I provide a variety of assessments for the students. That way each student has an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge of the course content in different ways. ~ Sharon

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  7. Hi Sharon,

    I noticed that you labeled us all as self-directed learners which is accurate; at least to my knowledge. However, many students we have and will have will not be. So, I think technology can bring in their attention and build that interest motivating them to learn. Technology can transform students to be self-directed learners. In the future, I plan to be more aware of what students are already self-directed learners and what students may need some extra motivation with the use of technology.

    As you stated, I plan on using mobile learning in my future classes. I will have to brainstorm ideas but I am excited to the fact that I will be using something groundbreaking!

    Joshua

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  8. Hello Sharon. I would agree too, that I have learned a lot about different ways to incorporate technology into the classroom from all of you in this class. I’ll be interested to hear how things go at your school with the integration of tablets, should they move forward with it. It is challenging to keep up with technology, how to use it, and how it could be incorporated into the classroom. I say that and I’m not even teaching. I would think for you folks that are teaching already, it would be even more challenging. You will have to keep in touch to let me know how this endeavor goes for you.

    Debi

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  9. Terry Mc Quay

    One thing I will incorporate into my teaching and learning is to understand Flipped classrooms. This has sparked my interest because I am in the process of working with students in the community.

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