Online all the time (presentation)

SW TX Popular Culture Friday

The first thing I thought of in this panel was that next time I come to a conference, I want to tweet the whole thing. 140 characters at a time I could micro-blog the conference. Using that approach, however, would take away from thoughtful approaches to the talks.

Scaffolding 2.0: Students Making Sense of Web 2.0
Phil Tietjen, University of New Mexico

Teaching Technical Communication with Wikis
Jennifer Bracken, New Mexico State University

Online Time versus Face to Face Time: Time Commitment for Instructors
Shelley Thomas, Weber State University

Web 2.0 and Scaffolding appealed to me a lot. I liked the presentation of what is 2.0, especially since lots of us are unclear. I was.

He showed the video “A Vision of Students Today.” His talk is what caused me to go post those two videos on my blog.

He applied Vygotsky (as a theorist) with his concept of social learning and the zone of proximal development.

  • Here’s what you can do on your own.
  • Here’s what you can do with someone else’s help.

His most useful points for me (besides pointing to Vygotsky) were:
1. Give the students low barrier orientation activities.
2. When you structure group activities, think about how they can ask different questions.

Obviously, I do the low barrier orientation activities. Sign up for an account. Write a blog post. Write comments. Write another blog post. Write more comments.

I was wondering if as a class we could come up with a list of questions that our blog could help answer. How can they use our blog to help each other? I think this would be a useful discussion. Maybe it would increase the credibility of the blog by making it more theirs… If they come up with uses for it, does it belong to them more?

Using Wikis to Teach

I have wanting to begin using wikis, but have been really stumped with this.

I hate to admit this, because of what I am going to point out that she said, but on my first page of notes for her presentation I wrote, “Get Ron to help me with this if I can use it for school. We’ll see.”

On the second page of notes, I quoted her. “Students need to learn to learn technology.”

Ouch. What a rap on the knuckles! I haven’t had that sharp a ruler there since second grade.

She gave a lot of good information in bunches.

Reasons to teach with wikis:
1. expands student learning experience and makes them more comfortable publishing online
2. addresses pedagogical goals
3. facilitates instructor feedback

Theorists useful to the discussion:

  • Garza and Hern= create paths vs. filling voids
  • Wilson= develop multiple right answers to a communication problem
  • Kitalong-Will= writing and interacting with info in a digital environment (students need experience dealing with academic and professional information)

Suggested assignments:  (YEAH!  This is what I most wanted.)

Collaboratively select and revise an article from Wikipedia (Kitalong-Will).

Write a wiki for the whole class and create separate pages like Wikipedia (Collier).

Use individually composed essays and create collaboratively written intros and conclusions (Carr, et al).

Students present on interests and strengths.  Based on those presentations they form groups of three or four.  Then they come up with a site map, conduct research, and collaborate on a wiki site (Bracken).

Online v. F2F teaching

Thomas introduced with Sorin Gudea’s book Expectations and Demands of Online Teachers.

Then she discussed some work she’s done on her own, studying to see which classes she spends more time on.  Subjectively, she said, it feels as if she spends more time on the online courses because she is “always on.”

But, what she found was that her times were very different.

  • For online preparation: 939 minutes
  • For f2f prep: 862 minutes
  • For online discussions: 558 minutes
  • For f2f discussions: 4050 minutes
  • For online class email: 921 minutes
  • For f2f class email: ~840 minutes
  • For online administration: 534 minutes
  • For f2f admin: 40 minutes

Minutes per student

  • discussions online 17
  • discussions f2f 225
  • grading online 141
  • grading f2f 75
  • total for online: 234
  • total for f2f: 441

She spends more time with f2f students and she finds f2f students are more successful.  Are these related?

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