My digital story

Can be viewed here.

I chose Prezi both for its presentation capabilities and the learning styles it integrates. Prezi presentations fairly leap off the screen, with their rapid and spinny transitions. The ability to position graphics at different angles and using different sizes also makes the more static look of PowerPoint look antiquated. In short, the end product looks very contemporary, very slick.

Pedagogically, visual learners will find a Prezi compelling and easily consumable. Folks who work better in text-mediated environments can choose to advane the presentation more quickly or more slowly, as they see fit. And the act of clicking forwards and backwards adds a bit of a kinesthetic element to the consumption experience. There are ways to embed audio and video, but I found the learning curve for images and text challenging enough: perhaps next time!

My approach to teaching and learning often is compartmentalized. Some courses are focused on literatures and theories and I tend to use narrative approaches widely (if not predominantly) there. In other courses skills building–be it educational technology or research methods–are the focus: in those courses I tend not to use narrative. However these are more trends–think largely or usually, rather than absolutely.

As an instructor I often require students to bring bits of themselves into their work. This is rooted in a belief that who we are informs what we do…and that we need to acknowledge and interrogate our positions to better see where our inclinations (biases?) lie.

It seems only fair that I bring more of me–not merely the bits transparently relevant to the course or subject area–into the course as well. However that feels a bit *weird* and omphaloskepsic. In putting together this wee narrative of my own educational trajectory, I feel somewhat more comfortable sharing this with students.


About John P Egan

Learning technology professional.
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6 Responses to My digital story

  1. David De Pieri says:

    Hey John,

    Love that life story of yours… ya sometimes it takes forever to get there, but the journey is definitely worth it…

    The Skating Oval is incredible isn’t it. I hope to take my kids skating there in the fall/early winter if still available. I wanted to volunteer, but part of me thinks the Olympics will help kill the province afterwards. We’ll see… I have relatives in Torino, they paint a very clear picture.

    I am on another work journey I will tell you about one day, very exciting for me…


  2. John P Egan says:

    Hey ddp!

    The Oval is actually open for skating this summer–or it was as of last week. Check it out!

    Looking forward to hearing about your journey….

  3. Ernest Pao says:

    Hi John,

    Neat story! In many ways, I can definitely relate. Love the Olympics and can’t wait to see Canada take gold at the new Oval next year…I pass by that place everyday to work. What a beautiful building!



  4. Erin Gillespie says:

    Hi John,

    What a great story! I’m a big fan of Prezi and how you can mix a mind-mapping idea with an interactive presentation. It’s a great way to introduce yourself on a more playful level. I feel I know you much better through your Prezi than through a “typical” bio I would read about staff and faculty on the UBC website.

    Thanks for sharing,


  5. David Wees says:

    Yeah I agree with Erin. Some audio in the background would be nice, but Prezi doesn’t make this easy. Have to create a SWF with audio embedded in etc, takes a lot of specialized skills most Prezi users don’t have. Hope they figure that out quickly, it shouldn’t be that hard, even if they only accept MP3 format (which is handy because it can be played natively in the Flash player).

  6. John Egan says:

    Thanks Ernie, Erin and David!

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