Davidson College workshop on Open Educational Practices

In May of 2018 I facilitated a two-day workshop at Davidson College, in Davidson, North Carolina, on Open Educational Practices. I created a site for the workshop on my domain (I have a domain with Reclaim Hosting) where I posted the schedule, learning objectives, and all resources.

Go to that site to see everything; if you just want to see the slides, see below! The slides are available in an editable, power point format on the resources page on the website for the workshop.

[I can’t see the embedded slides on my version of Firefox with Privacy Badger enabled. If you can’t see the embedded slides, there may be an add-on issue. You could try a different browser or turn off a privacy add on. Or you can use the links to see the slides.]

Day 1 slides

See the Day 1 slides on Speakerdeck

Day 2 slides

See the Day 2 slides on Speakerdeck

Creative Commons Then & Now (CC Cert assignment)

I am taking the Creative Commons Certificate course for Educators this summer, and the assignment for the end of the first week is this (this is one of the two options):

Create a video, slide presentation, podcast, wikibook content, an infographic (or choose another medium) in which you describe the key historical events leading up to the launch of Creative Commons and the state of Creative Commons today. Rather than a disconnected list, create a narrative (tell a story) that ties events and people together. Try to create something that would be useful and interesting to someone who just heard about Creative Commons and wants to learn more.

There was also a list of elements of the story that need to be included, and I just barely managed to fit all of them on the infographic I created! (You can see all of the documents for the course, including the assignments, on the Certificate Resources page.)

I made it with Canva, and most of the icons were purchased through a subscription to The Noun Project. Besides trying to make the elements look good visually and be readable, the thing that took me a surprisingly long time was working on the colour contrasts on the infographic to try to conform to web content accessibility guidelines (WCAG) for colour contrast. The default colours on the template I used from Canva did not conform to those guidelines.

I used the WebAIM colour contrast checker to play around with the background colours and the text/icon colours to make the contrast fit WCAG 2.0 AA guidelines. I am not certain I 100% succeeded; it was a laborious process with Canva, to find the hex codes for each colour and input them into the contrast checker. I just made the decision not to make the dotted lines under the years conform to the guidelines; it’s not a problem if those are difficult to see, as they don’t convey any meaning but are merely decorative.

When will we get to the point where templates on tools such as Canva just automatically conform to accessibility guidelines, or at least automatically have a checker that can help you test if they do and fix if they do not?

Overall, this took quite a bit of time this week, and if I took even more time I expect I’d be happier with it, but at some point one has to stop and move on to the next task!

infographic on the past and present of Creative Commons

 

 

 

 

OOE13 Twitter chat on open education

As noted in the previous post, I helped facilitate an open online course called OOE13 (Open Online Experience 13) in 2013 and 2014. In April 2014 I was in charge of the topic of open education for the course, and we had a couple of Twitter chats. This was actually the first one though it is coming second here in my post order.

I’m archiving the tweets here because Storify is going away in a few days. So think of this post as having been here since 2014.

Continue reading

OOE13 Twitter chat on OER

From Sept. 2013 to May 2014 I helped co-design and facilitate an open, online course for educators (Open Online Experience 2013)  on topics ranging from connected learning to digital literacy to digital storytelling to open education. The domain we had is no longer kept up and has some other website on it, so you can’t get information there. But you can see a couple of other posts about it under the OOE13 category here on my blog

In this post and the next one I’ll be pasting in Tweets from Twitter chats we had in April of 2014, when I was in charge of that month’s topic, open education. Now that storify.com is going away, I need to archive what I had there, here on my blog!

Continue reading

Why Open Twitter chat on CC licenses and “Why Open?”

On August 29, 2014, I helped facilitate a Twitter chat for a course I was co-designing and facilitating called Why Open? at P2PU (Peer 2 Peer University).

I had this Twitter chat archived at storify.com, but since it’s going away I’m moving the Tweets here to my blog instead. So imagine that this post was made in 2014!

I took out some tweets whose URLs went nowhere; apparently they have left Twitter or moved their accounts…

Continue reading

CLMOOC16 Find 5 Friday

I participated in #CLMOOC (connected learning MOOC) in the summer of 2016, at least a little bit (see a couple of posts in the CLMOOC category here on my blog).

I created a “Find 5 Friday” post on Storify during that time, and as Storify is shutting its doors and deleting all content in a week or so (May 2018) I’m archiving important stories from there, here on my blog.

So, this is from July 2016….

CLMOOC Find 5 Friday Week 1

http://clmooc.com/2016/make-cycle-1-make-with-me-who-are-we/

1. A thought-provoking thought

Nazife posted in the #clmooc Google plus group a couple of lines from Rumi:

“Why do you stay in prison

When the door is so wide open?”

If you click on the link to the G+ post above you can see the very apt image she posted, with these lines superimposed on it.

I found this very thought-provoking, and wondered what prisons I am staying in, even without realizing it. That is a theme for my #F5F (of which one is the Nazife’s post!). Some of the prisons I’m in are based in fear, so the following are ways I got past that this week.

2. Stealing and collaborating

Terry Elliott wrote a post in which he claims he “stole” a poem from Deanna Mascle and made something new from it.

He asked on his Google Plus post about this post, “We are collaborating with our #DailyConnect , but…what if the collaboration is unbidden.” He didn’t ask, he just took the original and made something new.

That’s something I’ve very familiar with from #ds106–taking what someone else has created, even without asking, and making something else. It’s part of the culture of sharing and making there. So this wasn’t surprising to me.

And what was really cool is that Deanna had made her original picture from words she collected from others in CLMOOC. Talk about collaboration!

Deanna’s also a great post on its own, putting together many people’s contributions to week 1!

3. So this is number 3…

It’s a great example of showcasing what others have done and doing something wonderful with it.

Notable Notes: Exploring Identity with/in #CLMOOC

2. Back to number 2

What was surprising to me was that even though at the end of his post above Terry invited us explicitly to collaborate on his own poem made from Deanna’s picture, I was really wary about doing so. Here is the Hackpad he invited us to play on.

I did add some things and created a section of the pad that could stand on its own as a poem, but I left the rest of what he had written at the bottom, as if afraid to touch it. As if I shouldn’t really mess with it. Sure, it was partly to leave it in case others wanted to use that part and make something new, but really it was because I felt very awkward taking someone else’s words and changing them.

And that’s strange to me because I do it all the time with pictures in #ds106, but somehow with writing it felt different. The words felt like they were more attached to the person and I shouldn’t mess with them. Even when Terry explicitly said to do so!

But I got over that and did it anyway, at least to some degree. So I got out of that “prison,” so to speak.

4. Unexpected smiles

Karen LaBonte wrote in her week 1 reflection that she has often started off strong in MOOCs but then:

“typically, within a couple of of weeks, I am floundering in the backwash of folks who seem to instinctively know the who, what, where, when, and why: who to talk to, when, what to say, what they want to gain from the experience, what they can offer others, etc. As I teetered on the cusp of CLMOOC2016, I wondered whether MOOCs are made for extroverts, which in many ways, I am not.”

I found this really important to consider. I am an extrovert online, someone who puts herself out there in many ways and hopes for the best. This week I shared my very personal grief over some of the horror that has been happening in the world this summer, as I struggled with my emotions on one of the days this week and decided to do a drawing to try to express them. I was a little worried about sharing that pain and that drawing with strangers, but I decided to try and got wonderful support back (and even Daniel Bassill making a remix of my drawing, which helped me immensely).

I appreciated the reminder that some people find open, online courses difficult and can get lost in the flow, feel somewhat left out when others seem to know exactly what to do. What I can say, though, is that so far I am finding CLMOOC to be a very inviting space and I hope that people who might otherwise flounder a bit can find their footing here in this kind, supportive, open and fun group!

I also loved Karen’s stories about the unexpected smiles she shared one day, one through Pokemon Go and one just from someone on the street who wished her a good day out of the blue. Knowing that that still happens, and there are wonderful people in the world, was something I needed to hear this week.

5. On the edge

One of the #dailyconnects for week 1 was to explore one’s edge.

What is your edge and how do you approach falling off? That resonated with the theme I’ve chosen for my #F5F this week, of what prisons I find myself in based in fear.

Sheri Edwards created a lovely picture in which she explores her own edge.

Sheri talks about going over the edge of shyness, and realizing that when you fall off, that is when you can fly. And grow, and change.

One of my edges currently is with drawing. It’s something I’ve always thought I just couldn’t do, even while others could. Recently I decided to, well, just start and practice–because how can you get good if you never do it? That’s one of my edges I’ll be pushing in #clmooc this summer, and I’m glad to have a supportive and kind bunch of people to push it with!

 

Tweets about open pedagogy & open edu practices

I’m archiving some Storify stories, since Storify is going away May 16 and deleting all content. I am following Alan Levine’s very helpful process and using his link extractor tool discussed towards the end of that post.

What I can’t easily figure out is where on this site I already have Storify embeds that are going to disappear. I tried to do a search for “storify” through the search function, but that probably only works if I actually say “storify” in the post. Which I don’t know if I did for each of those.

So, until I find posts where these Storify stories are, I’m going to create new posts so I at least have the tweet links in one place! Then hopefully later I can find where I put the darn things here on my blog. (Thanks a lot, Storify, for making our desire to archive really, really hard).

Continue reading

Presentation on open pedagogy and open edu practices, Mt. Royal University

Poster for this event

For Open Education Week (March 2018) I was invited to give a keynote presentation/workshop on open educational practices and open pedagogy at Mount Royal University in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. I titled it “Beyond cost savings: The value of OER and open pedagogy for student learning.”

They asked me to speak about open educational practices (OEP) and open pedagogy because, while the adoption, adaptation, and creation of Open Educational Resources (OER) was pretty well understood at their institution, the ideas of OEP and open pedagogy were not.

Being a philosopher, and based on my thinking about open pedagogy and OEP over the last year (see my blog posts on these topics), I used this opportunity to try to push my own thinking further around just how we might conceptualize these two topics. I also provided examples of what others had called OEP or open pedagogy.

There was a worksheet that accompanied the session, that people worked on individually and discussed in groups; we didn’t get as much time on this as I had planned (my fault…I talk for too long!)

OEP at Mt Royal, worksheet (MS Word)

And here are some notes I wrote up with plans for the session:

OEP at Mt Royal U, notes (MS Word)

 

Here are the slides from the talk…

You can download them in an editable Power Point file: Beyond Cost Savings, Mt Royal U, slides (pptx)

Some end-of-term thoughts on Intro to Philosophy

statue of Socrates, showing just the head

Socrates, by Ben Crowe, licensed CC BY 2.0 on Flickr.com

 

 

Classes for this term ended yesterday, and I have a few immediate thoughts/reflections after the term has finished, about my Introduction to Philosophy course that I wanted to write down so I don’t forget them when I’m planning for the next time!

Here are a few things I struggled with determining how to do best this term.

Lecture & non-lecture time during class

This class meets Mondays and Wednesdays for 50 minutes in a big group, and then students also attend one more 50-minute discussion group run by a Teaching Assistant. I run the M,W classes, and it’s often a struggle for me to figure out how best to balance lecture vs. active learning time in that class.

On one hand, there is a great deal of research literature showing that students learn better if they don’t only listen to lectures but also do something with what they’re learning. On the other hand, I do think lectures can be quite useful if done well (and I try my best!); plus, students need to have some kind of basic understanding before active learning on the material can be effective. This can be gotten through what they do outside of class, but just reading philosophy texts on one’s own, if one is new to philosophy, isn’t usually the best way to get that understanding. I have created a few videos to help students with some of the readings but these are time consuming to make and I haven’t made very many.

In addition, since students also attend a full discussion group meeting once a week, I feel like I don’t want to do too much in the way of activities in the M,W class because I need to leave some of that available for the other class.

I did a midterm survey to get feedback partway through the course, and most students seemed to think the balance of what we were doing in class was fine; some wanted a little more lecture, some wanted a little less, and there wasn’t a strong majority on one side or the other.

Still, I feel like I want to work on this more, partly because of the next thing.

What to include in lectures

One student on the midterm feedback survey made an important point: they said that they felt like the people who did the readings before class (which I ask students to do!) got punished, in a way, because the lectures often went back over the readings. I agree! I struggle with this too.

The issue with intro to philosophy courses is that philosophy texts are not always easy to read and understand, for those new to the field (and also sometimes even for those familiar with the field!). As a result, all of my experience as a student, a grad student TA, and visiting others’ philosophy courses at times, shows that we tend to ask students to do the reading before class and then we go back over the reading in class to clarify the arguments. It is of course critical for all of us to have the basics of the arguments before writing essays about the philosophical views.

But I think I can work on this further by having more guidance for students while they’re reading or just before class. So, videos to help break down the basics, or formative (non-graded) quizzes to help them get the basics before coming to class, e.g. This is not something that can be done quickly but I can build it up over time.

I also want to take more time in class to talk about how to take notes on philosophical texts, and find ways to encourage more note-taking while reading. One way would be to ask them to submit notes from time to time that are graded just for completion. I made that an optional way to earn participation marks this term and those who did it did a great job! The only thing that has kept me from making this required is the large number of students in this course (usually between 100 & 150), and the difficulty of keeping up with marking. But I’m going to give this some more serious thought.

Then we could do other things in class, like delve more deeply into potential criticisms of the arguments–if they have the basics first then we can go deeper in class.

Peer feedback on essays

Last year I asked students to submit their completed first essays for peer feedback: after they submitted their first essays, they shared with one other person who read the whole essay and gave feedback for the purpose of improving the writing for the second essay. On the student evaluations some students wanted to be able to use peer feedback before they submit the essay for a mark.

So I changed things this year and had students submit something for peer feedback before each essay. For the first essay they submitted a draft introduction paragraph with a thesis statement, plus topic sentences for each body paragraph. That was due a bit over a week before the essay, and then students got comments from two other students (ideally) before finalizing their essays. For the second essay we did something similar, though this time they could submit up to 350 words of a paragraph about one of the philosophers’ views, if they wanted, or the same kind of thing they submitted for the first essay. The purpose of the paragraph option was to get feedback on whether they got the philosophers’ views correct and on the balance between quotes and paraphrases in the paragraph.

We did the peer feedback online (on Canvas), and it worked mostly okay. The main concerns I had were that some people submitted work but didn’t give any feedback on others’ work. The system automatically assigns two other students’ work for each student who submitted something. So for the surprisingly significant number of people who didn’t do any peer feedback, those other students missed out on comments (the TAs and I offered to talk to students who didn’t get any feedback from any other students, to discuss their work–which is of course something any student could also do!).

I’m struggling with:

  • How valuable it is to get feedback on small snippets before submitting a full essay, as we did this year, or whether I should go back to having students provide feedback on a completed essay
    • If the latter, probably the option to rewrite the essay should be made available.
  • How to get students to actually do peer feedback online (make it worth more, perhaps)
    • Last year we did peer feedback in person–students could only participate if they came to class and exchanged their essay with someone else. This meant that students actually did it, but it also meant it couldn’t be anonymous. There are pros and cons for each!

 

Those are my initial thoughts here at the end of the term. I will do more reflecting after the student evaluations of teaching results are out!

PressEd 2018 Conference on Twitter

I participated in a “conference” that took place entirely on Twitter March 29, 2018–PressEd 2018, about using WordPress in Education. It was a very interesting format: all presentations were series of 10-15 tweets over the course of 15 minutes, leaving time for questions at the end.

All of the tweets were on the #pressedconf18 hashtag, so you can see them by searching that tag.

Or you can see each of the presentations as Twitter moments.

I did a presentation about connecting student blogs together through syndication, in the Arts One program I taught in for many years. You can see the Tweets from this below.

I really liked this conference, for a few reasons.

  • It didn’t feel like something I had to travel to in order to get a full experience, which meant it didn’t feel like some people got a different and better experience than others.
  • It was something I could dip into and out of during the day and didn’t feel bad about it because I knew it would all be available later.
  • The sessions were in small enough chunks to digest without feeling overwhelmed. One could get bite-sized thoughts and ideas that could percolate later. And there are lots of links to go explore for the things one is particularly interested in.
  • I was able to keep exactly on time because I created the tweets beforehand and then I scheduled them to be once a minute during my 15 minutes. I didn’t go over time or feel like I wished I had just five more minutes, for maybe once in my life.
  • The small character count kept me from being too wordy or trying to cover too much (which are issues I usually have). I have to say, though, this would have been much more challenging for me back in the 140-character limit days.

I didn’t get many questions or comments afterwards, but that was okay … I felt like others were dipping in and out just like I was, and plus–the sessions were really close to each other in timing and there wouldn’t have been time to have long conversations on the hashtag without busting into someone else’s series of tweets!

Here are the tweets I sent…  And looking back, I realize I really should have had more pictures or screen grabs or something. These are all just text and links, and many others had nice visuals. I hadn’t been thinking this way, but it makes sense to consider these tweets kind of like slides for a presentation, and I wouldn’t have slides that are *only* text. So I embedded some images here in my post, even though I didn’t do it in the original tweets.

Oh well…next time! I hope this format is used again by someone/some group (something for me to consider myself!).

 

Structure of Arts One

Screen shot of part of front page of Arts One Open site

 

Ooops–the link in the above tweet is wrong. It should be: http://artsone-open.arts.ubc.ca

Tag cloud of tags on Arts One Open (you can find student & prof blog posts, plus lecture recordings, plus podcasts through these tags)

Poster for Karasik’s guest lecture March 27, 2017.