I figured I would interrupt the regularly scheduled animated GIFs for a few posts on some of the presentations and projects I have been part of recently. And I’ll start with the quick, lunchtime presentation Martha Burtis and I gave at Faculty Academy about ds106. This attempt to present ds106 to a group of people simply reinforced what Tim Owens already noted about this course, “to do it any justice a few days of presentations from a wide range of participants would be needed” (paraphrase)—so this is nothing if not incomplete. Nonetheless, it’s a start.
Special thanks to Andy Rush for the video and Timmmmyboy for getting this up on ds106.tv so quickly, you both rock!
Really interesting to watch this, Jim. The point at which Martha, around 28 mins, talks about doing the same assignments as the students makes me think of what we’re trying to do at Lincoln. We call it ‘student as producer’ or ‘research-engaged teaching and learning’. Whatever you call it, it’s about teachers and students working on the same stuff together, sharing the experience, recognising that each has something to learn from each other. To call them ‘assignments’ sounds wrong and out-dated to me. You need to find a new language to describe your avant-garde pedagogy. Having said that, I was impressed with how you both made no apologies for using the language of the web when discussing the tools you use – you never explained yourself once. Who was in the audience?
Martha is amazing, and her framing of course is powerful. I agree that assignments seems an outdated term for what we are doing—would love to find something new, will think hard about that. The audience was actually UMW faculty and a host of folks from other schools around Virginia. I think we were unapologetic about the language and tech talk because so many of these folks know and use WordPress and have also been forced to listen to us for years 😉
To the work you are doing, I can really see the crossover between ds106 and the “Student as producer” model you are working on at Lincoln. fact is, I think this idea of working alongside students, and allowing them to submit their own ideas and we do their “assignment” has changed the dynamic of the class entirely. it has been a fun course to experiment with, and I am planning on doing this same course over the Summer—in fact Martha is teaching one now here: http://may11.ds106.us
Found this video via Stephen Downes’ blog. I am insanely curious how you maintain such a refreshing “can do” attitude about your course. After 16 years of being told at my institution, “We can’t afford that,” or, “It’s a security risk,” or, “It’s not part of our vision,” or, “What about legal?” I find myself now thinking about new ideas not in terms of, “How cool would that be?” but, “What makes this a bad idea?”
Would love to know the secret of your optimism.
I think the cliche “do it and ask for forgiveness later” has some truth in this case (not sure I said that right). basically, we have been experimenting with this class under the radar, and the idea has been to push the boundaries, we didn;t publicize what we were doing widely on campus—though we took the opposite approach on the internet—and we got lucky. If the institution says no, then I would suggest you are asking for far too much permission. Teachers, faculty, and professors alike need the room and freedom to experiment, if you aren’t given that, you must simply take it. I think of it as a mortal obligation of any good teacher.
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