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

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:

Millennials are more educated, but less employed

Studies about millennials (young people born between 1980 and 1995 or 2000, depending on whose definition you use) are revealing that many of them now have a high level of education. But rather than take their knowledge and skills into the workplace, many are choosing to put their time and talents into altruistic endeavors, and striving to make a difference in their world.

For more background on the Millennials and what they tend to believe and do, see my earlier post: What is is with our students? The Millennials are here!

Read the article from USA Today at this link: Millennials.

Watch this video from CBS News to get an update:

The State of Creativity — OETA television series

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 using. Vertical Learning Curve is creating a full MBA curriculum using its virtual reality technology, which we are adapting for selected undergraduate courses in our online B.S. in Business Administration program.

You can learn more about VLC and the courses at www.vlcglobal.com.

This segment also features an intriguing approach to teaching creativity being used now at the University of Tulsa, called StudioBlue. You can get more information on the entire OETA series at creativity.oeta.tv, and about the Oklahoma Creativity Project at www.stateofcreativity.com.

Enjoy the video!

Quality standards for online courses

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 download a .pdf version of the pamphlet at www.sreb.org

I encourage you to download and review it!

Rethinking the old PowerPoint routine

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 should know, by Garr Reynolds. The second of these builds on a recent popular book entitled, Brain Rules: 12 Rules for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School, by molecular biologist John Medina.

Some companion web sites for these approaches are at beyondbulletpoints.com and brainrules.net. Be sure and watch the videos on the Brain Rules site!

Both approaches underscore the fact that we are all highly visual creatures, and that we normally can focus on only one or a very limited number of thoughts at any given time. They build on this understanding of how our minds work to create a fundamentally very different approach to presenting information. They emphasize engaging the listener/viewer with a cogent STORY rather than a blizzard of facts.

Interesting reading and discovery.

“Chunking” your online course content

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 into sets of information that “hang together” for the learner to consider.

When preparing your content, you should consider how to create your content “chunks” in the same manner. Rather than thinking in terms of a monolithic classroom lecture (e.g., “I have to cover one and a half chapters of the textbook in this 1 hour, 50 minute course meeting”), think about smaller segments that can more or less stand on their own, or be sequenced in a meaningful way.

This is especially important when creating video content for your course, using tools like Camtasia Studio. When creating video segments of, say, a PowerPoint presentation, I like to limit the individual pieces to no more than ten or fifteen minutes, and then provide some type of table of contents or other structure to guide the students through the material in a logical fashion.

The latest version of Camtasia Studio provides some help with creating and managing your “chunks” of course materials. We have a limited number of licenses at ORU, so please contact me if you’d like to use it. You can download a fully-functional, 30-day evaluation copy at www.techsmith.com/download/camtasiatrial.asp.

For some ideas about how to create educational “chunks” using Camtasia Studio, check out the long list of tutrial videos at this link: www.techsmith.com/community/education/education_solutions.asp.

To see another component of Camtasia Studio, the Camtasia Theater, for arranging the set of “chunks” with a useful interactive table of contents and navigation structure, please see this tutorial video: Camtasia Theater.

Think “chunking”!