Teaching With Technology

I’m taking my first MOOC — Massive Open Online Course

by Marty Crossland on January 22, 2013

I just signed up for the first MOOC I’ll have been any part of. MOOC stands for Massive Open Online Course. Several different educational consortia now offer quite a few such courses. The course I’ll be taking is E-Learning and Digital Cultures, from a team of “tutors” at Edinburgh University in the UK. A course description from the Coursera website:

“This course will explore how digital cultures and learning cultures connect, and what this means for e-learning theory and practice.”
More info at: https://www.coursera.org/#course/edc

The course starts next week, and runs for five weeks. I just received an email confirmation from the course team today, and they shared that they now have over 260,000 participants enrolled in this one session alone!

One of the hallmarks of MOOCs is that they are nearly all free, as this one is. It is coordinated by a consortium of universities founded by two faculty members from Stanford University, named Coursera, at www.coursera.org.

Here is a short video overview of the course:


(3 minutes)

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I just saw a fascinating presentation about creating more powerful presentations by NOT using PowerPoint. Indeed, the talk illustrates the point by using live dancers on the stage with the presenter to help illustrate the points of the message. The speaker, John Bohannon, is a microbiologist, and has started a contest called “Dance Your PhD,” encouraging science researchers to employ professional dancers when speaking or illustrating their concepts to a live audience. Search for this term on www.youtube.com and see some of the winning entries.

I think you will enjoy and appreciate this TED talk.

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Amazing 3D Solid Object Printers

by Marty Crossland on July 13, 2011

Technology continues to amaze me. Here is a short documentary about how a huge variety of working machines, tools, and other objects can be created and reproduced by a resin-based 3D printing system. Just imagine its applications for creating working models, prototypes, visual aids, and even production items for distribution.

Recently I was able to observe one of these machines in action at one of our local high school technology labs. Instructors were using it to help students create visual models of molecular structures.

Want to buy your own 3D printer and try it out? Here are some commercial sources:

Watch this video to see a printer reproduce a working, usable, resin copy of a large crescent wrench. Wow!


 

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Five Minds for the Future – Howard Gardner

by Marty Crossland on April 24, 2011

Howard Gardner portraitHaving discovered Howard Gardner’s work (Harvard University) a few years ago, particularly his theory of multiple intelligences, I have been keenly interested in following further developments in the field. I am now reading a more recent book he wrote, Five Minds For The Future.

I recently discovered this interview Dr. Gardner gave for the Australian Institute for Company Directors, where he discusses a bit of the history of the book and what implications it has for educators. I encourage you to listen to it and ponder, as I have.

You may also be interested in Dr. Gardner’s blog at www.howardgardner.com.

Disclaimer: While I believe Dr. Gardner has done some fascinating work that has value in its application, I have also discovered that Dr. Gardner and I diverge significantly in our views of human origins, society and politics. I have discovered elsewhere that Dr. Gardner celebrates Charles Darwin as perhaps the most significant investigator of our time. I, on the other hand, believe that science has failed to support Darwin’s  hypotheses of macro-evolution. Dr. Gardner is also a strong proponent of socialism, stating elsewhere some radical views on income redistribution that I find abhorrent (see his interview with Richard Heffner). Nevertheless, I find his work on the five minds fascinating and compelling, while drawing significantly different conclusions about applications.

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Hand-drawn illustration of a talk and making it a video

by Marty Crossland on January 5, 2011

In an earlier post, I shared Mr. Daniel Pink’s talk on his book, Drive. I discovered this additional version of the presentation. I believe it is the same audio track, but an organization named RSA has modified the video to be a very innovative, hand-drawn-on-a-whiteboard illustration of the talk. I find it fascinating for its communicative value. The site where you can see more illustrated talks is www.theRSA.org.

Here is the illustrated talk:

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Using free online videos for teaching and learning

November 6, 2010 Teaching With Technology
http://vimeo.com/briansew

Here is a good article about how a number of higher education instructors are using freely available online video to enhance the learning experience for their students: Instructional Video for the Budget-Constrained Classroom I have similarly employed online videos that I didn’t produce myself into my own courses. Not mentioned in the article is a […]

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DRiVE: What motivates us (and our students)

June 1, 2010 Teaching With Technology

I have become quite a fan of Daniel Pink. In an earlier entry here, I shared his presentations on his book A Whole New Mind: How Right Brainers Will Rule the Future. In this entry, I want to share a recent TED presentation he made about his newest book, DRiVE: The Surprising Truth About What […]

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Mental Enhancement Drug Use Increasing on College Campuses

April 26, 2010 Teaching With Technology

I was somewhat caught off guard with this CBS News 60 Minutes segment from their April 25, 2010 program. It describes how an estimated relatively large proportion of college students are misusing prescription drugs to enhance their mental abilities for exams, term papers, etc. The more common drugs are Adderall and Ritalin, which are commonly […]

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April Fool in math class

April 12, 2010 Digital Culture

A math professor at Biola University set up a hilarious technology interaction for his class on April Fool’s Day. He interacts with his own shadow on the video projector. Check it out and have a good chuckle!

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A vision of students today

April 12, 2010 Digital Culture

Here is a fascinating, thought-provoking video about how students view education today. It’s a product by a professor at Kansas State University, completed by his students. Pay close attention!

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A whole new way of thinking

January 20, 2010 Digital Culture

Author and speaker Daniel Pink has completed some very provocative work on trends in business and the economy. He is a hugely entertaining speaker, especially when he shares that he was a woefully unsuccessful student in law school. Dan shares three macro-level drivers of 21st century careers: Abundance Asia Automation This talk was delivered around […]

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Speaking metaphorically

December 23, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Author James Geary presented an interesting talk at TED, pointing out that we typically use about four to six metaphors a minute whenever we’re in an engaging conversation. He has done some formal study of the use of metaphors throughout history. As you watch this presentation, note also his use of some fairly new presentation […]

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Useful webinars from Elluminate!

December 4, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Today I discovered a wonderful list of available, prerecorded, free webinars on a variety of topics, many of which pertain to teaching and instruction in higher education. They are provided by Elluminate, a very useful platform for providing multipoint platform for communications. With Elluminate you can have a virtual live discussion with a group of […]

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Perhaps the Internet enables relationships with and among our students more than we think!

November 12, 2009 Digital Culture

In a TED presentation I recently viewed, researcher Stefana Broadbent took on the often-heard notion that the Internet is causing isolation and anti-social behaviors for people in our modern culture. Maybe not, she says. You may find that this talk challenges your thinking in that arena, as it did mine. For example, her studies have […]

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Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs

November 5, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Corporate communications coach Carmine Gallo has written a new book titled, “The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience.” He reviewed hundreds of hours of presentations by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, arguably one of the best presenters in the world. After all of his study, he has […]

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The Significance of Nontraditional Students for Universities

November 3, 2009 Teaching With Technology

I have been finding some very informative summaries of the signficance of the nontraditional student for universities and their enrollment managers. For example, did you know that the traditional, 18-22 year old students living on campus now comprise less than 16% of the total population of college and university students in the United States, and […]

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A Virtual Space Observatory

November 1, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Microsoft has created yet another stunning tool for learning, called the Worldwide Telescope project. It provides a seamless, scalable view into the heavens and the cosmos that I think is outstanding. This is yet another free resource that should be invaluable for students studying astronomy, cosmology and origins, and other sciences. Be sure and check […]

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An alternative to PowerPoint: prezi.com

November 1, 2009 Teaching With Technology

I recently attended the Sloan-C International Conference on Online Learning. In one of the presentations I attended, the presenters used a fascinating and quite effective presentation tool called Prezi. I talked to them afterward and found that they thought it was easy to learn, easy to use, and there is a free version. I have […]

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How Not Use PowerPoint

November 1, 2009 Teaching With Technology

How many times have you had to sit through a bad PowerPoint presentation? Even worse, how many times have you, perhaps unwittingly, foisted one onto your students? See if you get a kick like I did out of this comedy routine pointing out some of the (regrettably) common misuses of this potentially powerful software package.

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Semantically-linked photos: Coming soon to an Internet near you.

November 1, 2009 Teaching With Technology

In the video presentation below, a new technology is discussed that practically blew me away. Imagine being able to upload photos to Flickr or some other photo sharing site, and then have them automatically linked to all the other photos and textual information from the Internet related to them, especially if they have geographic or […]

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Presenting a live, interactive session to participants on mobile devices — for free!

October 7, 2009 Teaching With Technology
http://vimeo.com/moogaloo

I’m really intrigued with a new service just announced, called YouVersion Live. It’s been created mainly for churches and ministries to host live, interactive events at a site, and have interactive particpation by people on their mobile devices. The interaction could include answering polls, submitting questions, and even online giving or payments. I think this […]

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Student Authentication for Online Courses

October 7, 2009 Teaching With Technology

The recent Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) has made it mandatory that we be able to verify that the correct person is actually taking an online exam or other high-stakes assessment. The legislation language indicates that an institution must verify students’ identity by using at least one of the following: secure login and pass code […]

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New DOE study: Online learning outperforms the live classroom

October 6, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Well, a major study has formally analyzed and found out what a lot of us in online learning suspected or even thought we knew all along. This brand new study just released from the Department of Education is a comprehensive meta-analysis (that is, it is a comprehensive analysis of a large number of individual studies […]

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Embedding video in a Desire2Learn course

October 6, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Often I find it desireable to include a video from the Internet into a course I’m teaching. Thanks to the new Web 2.0 technologies, it is possible to provide high quality videos direct to our students without needing to do a lot of production work ourselves. And the way many videos are being published on […]

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Do you pecha-kucha?

October 4, 2009 Teaching With Technology

A new type of speaking club is starting to be the rage around the world. It’s known as pecha-kucha (pronounced (peh-chock-uh-chuh), from a japanese phrase meaning “the sound of conversation.” It is characterized by succinctness of presentation, imposed by a mandatory limit of twenty PowerPoint slides shown for twenty seconds each, automatically advanced by the […]

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eBooks as an option for course textbooks

August 30, 2009 Teaching With Technology

You may have missed a recent article in the Tulsa World that discussed the high cost of college textbooks. One promising option mentioned was digital (electronic) textbooks, often referred to as eBooks. I would encourage you to consider these as you choose textbooks for your next course offering, especially if you are creating or updating […]

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Emotionally intelligent signage

May 16, 2009 Teaching With Technology

I have recently discovered the work of Daniel Pink. He is a business writer, and a master storyteller who encourages others to be the same. In this short pecha-kucha presentation (what’s that? — see another post in this blog) on “emotionally intelligent signage,’ where he encourages anyone creating signs to help others find their way […]

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Linked data — the next Web generation

April 7, 2009 Teaching With Technology

Tim Berners-Lee recently gave a presentation at a TED conference on what he sees as the next generation of the Web — Linked Data. He sees organizations and even us as individuals contributing to a growing, well-organized (albeit organically) repository of raw data. This is being fueled by the exponential expansion of social networking and […]

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Disaster planning and recovery

March 30, 2009 Teaching With Technology

I recently gave a presentation on Disaster Planning and Recovery at the annual conference of the Oklahoma Association of Institutional Research and Planning. The conference was held on the campus of Redlands Community College in El Reno. The folks at RCC were very generous and accommodating for the conference. My talk was in two parts. […]

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The State of Creativity — OETA television series

March 18, 2009 Teaching With Technology

The OETA educational TV network has begun airing a wonderful series on Creativity in the state of Oklahoma, entitled “State of Creativity.” It is of special interest to me because in episode 102, first aired last night (March 17), they highlight the providers of some exciting virtual reality business education curricula that I am currently […]

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Technology for creating screen capture videos

March 17, 2009 Teaching With Technology

I’ve been using screen capture software from TechSmith for several years to create videos, static graphic images, and more for sharing with students and colleagues. I have created whole courses built around creative ways of packaging narrated screen videos. In this video, the makers of this software are interviewed about the latest developments in this […]

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GIS and geographic inquiry

March 17, 2009 Teaching With Technology

I my “previous life” I was a geoscientist. I worked in the petroleum industry as an exploration geophysicist, after earning a BS degree in Geology. Later in my career I became quite involved in using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology as decision support systems for assisting petroleum exploration professionals in making good decisions about possible […]

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Podcast trumps lecture in one college study

March 6, 2009 Teaching With Technology

In a recent study at the State University of New York at Fredonia, researches looked at whether experiencing a live lecture in the classroom or viewing a recorded version of the same lecture made a difference in learning. The result? Students who watched a video podcast scored on average a letter grade higher (71 percent […]

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Mindmapping and Project Management

November 6, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I recently made a presentation at the 14th Annual Sloan-C International Conference on Online Learning in Orlando, Florida. In it I described how we are planning to use an interesting combination of mind mapping software and project management software to manage a major online development project (converting about 100 correspondence courses to online courses). You […]

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Online Nation: Five Years of Growth in Online Learning | The Sloan Consortium

September 19, 2008 Teaching With Technology

The Sloan Consortium recently published a very important study of the growth of online learning. The comprehensive study was supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and included a broad survey of 2,500 colleges and universities. Anyone remotely involved in online and distance learning should read it. Here are some key points: Background: For the […]

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Is college necessary in a knowledge-drenched world?

September 17, 2008 Teaching With Technology

Wow! How’s that for a thought-provoking title? This is the title of an article every higher-education faculty member and administrator should read. It very well summarizes a driver of the paradigm shift that’s happening in the world related to education: “So much information, so little knowledge about what to do with it.” The author is […]

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Quality standards for online courses

September 16, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I recently attended the annual FUSION conference for users of the Desire2Learn learning management system. One of the gems I discovered is the Southern Regional Education Board. I picked up a really useful pamphlet entitled “Standards for Quality Online Courses.” It is a very succinct yet comprehensive framework for assessing online course quality. You can […]

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Bloom’s Rose: A tool for creating practical assignments at a different levels of learning

July 25, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I discovered an entry on Wikipedia for Bloom’s taxonomy, called Bloom’s Rose. It was created by John M. Kennedy. The original version had a number of typos and was somewhat hard to follow. So I created an alternative version of it using Mindjet Mindmanager. It provides, for each of the levels of learning described by […]

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Access to Learning Project

June 25, 2008 Teaching With Technology

Today I participated in an online seminar abut the Access to Learning Project. A number of notable universities have banded together for this collaborative project, sponsored by Eduventures. The project has produced a very professionally done multimedia web site that can be referenced to promote online learning to administrators, faculty, and prospective students, particularly to […]

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Rethinking the old PowerPoint routine

May 28, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I’ve discovered a couple of new approaches to preparing presentations. They are especially relevant to those of us who are deeply steeped in traditional bullet-point approaches using PowerPoint. One approach and book that I’m really enjoying reading it Beyond Bullet Points, by Cliff Atkinson. Another is an online presentation titled Brain Rules: what all presenters […]

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The future of plagiarism

May 15, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I just read an entertaining, but almost disheartening article that is a tongue-in-cheek eavesdrop on the conversation of two young professors twenty years in the future. They discuss the availability of automated plagiarism software that can research, copy or buy material, and then automatically edit the published works to the extent that the plagiarism can’t […]

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“Chunking” your online course content

May 14, 2008 Teaching With Technology

In an earlier post I introduced the notion of “chunking” your course content. What this means in a practical sense is that you should think of your course materials in terms of bite-size segments that your students can digest easily. For example, if you’re using a typical textbook, the chapters are probably subdivided by subheadings […]

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Tips for no-fail online course production

May 8, 2008 Teaching With Technology

A recent article in Campus Technology provides some really good tips for creating high-quality, successful online courses. You should read the article to get all the fine points, but below are the 5 tips: Create a plan. Embrace “chunking.” Emphasize quality. Make it interesting! Keep it relevant. Be sure and read the entire article at […]

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Pictures as communication tools

May 8, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I recently read a very interesting blog post about illustrations as communications devices. Some research cited found that integrating text ON pictures instead of UNDER pictures as captions was found to be much more effective for information presentation.Common practice used to be to include illustrations as supplemental information to the text of a presentation or […]

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Mobile Learning in Higher Education

April 23, 2008 Teaching With Technology

I just read a very interesting article by Ruth Reynard on the Campus Technology website. It talks about how the new generation of learners is no longer satisfied with the linear approach to learning that many of us grew up with, and still practice to a large degree when teaching our students. Today’s young students […]

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Ways to address online cheating and academic integrity

October 23, 2007 Teaching With Technology

In my conversations with colleagues about online education, the topics of cheating and academic integrity often come up. While these topics are also of concern in the traditional classroom, some may feel that online technologies may actually enable more widespread cheating. Here is an interesting article from a Desire2Learn newsletter that discusses some ways to […]

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Oklahoma Distance Learning Association Conference in Tulsa, November 5-6, 2007

September 28, 2007 Teaching With Technology

The Oklahoma Distance Learning Association is sponsoring a statewide conference in Tulsa this November 5 and 6. Its theme is “Web 2.0 in Education.” Registration is free to everyone, but do preregister as soon as you can to ensure a spot at the conference. It is being held at Oklahoma State University — Tulsa, my […]

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How to Make Pedagogically Meaningful Animations for Teaching and Research Using PowerPoint and Camtasia

September 27, 2007 Teaching With Technology

I just discovered a very interesting tutorial on using PowerPoint and Camtasia Studio to create teaching animations. The paper reviews and compares some of the various methods to accomplish the creation of such animations for illustrating concepts in cell biology and biochemistry. The techniques are universal, however, and can be employed in nearly any field […]

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Join the Desire2Learn Community

September 25, 2007 Teaching With Technology

Desire2Learn has a very active user community that is accessible by all ORU faculty and staff. There is lots of information about new product initiatives, extensive discussion groups by hundreds of other people using Desire2Learn, and loads of documentation. You just need to go to the site and request a login, using your ORU email […]

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Overview of Desire2Learn at ORU (video, 40 minutes)

September 7, 2007 Teaching With Technology

Some of you that are new to Desire2Learn might like to see a presentation I gave in November of 2006 to group of ORU faculty during an introductory session. In it I tell a little about the history of our acquisition of D2L and give a very brief overview of some the activities you might […]

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Welcome to Teaching With Technology!

September 7, 2007 Teaching With Technology

This site has been created primarily to help my colleagues learn more about using various technologies in the on-ground and virtual classrooms of now and in the future. We will be considering many topics, including using learning management systems, creating multimedia content for the classroom; various pedagogical and andragogical approaches to teaching and learning; course […]

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