Monthly Archives: July 2012

Journal # 3 “The Growing Use of Twitter in Education”

Journal 3– “The Growing use of Twitter in Education” a vlog posted by K. Walsh on October 31,2010. The video blog entry is a companion piece to his blog post “more than a Third of Higher Education faculty are on Twitter” on EmergingEdTech URL:http://www.emergingedtech.com/2010/10/more-than-a-third-of-higher-education-f…

July 25th,2010

Objective

In this vlog, blogger K Walsh stated that “there is usually a time lag for adoption of new technologies in education.”He was surprised at the popularity of the article ‘100 ways to teach with Twitter” (Walsh, 2010) Based on the report by Faculty Focus, more than a third of educators in higher education used Twitter in some form in the year 2010.  Walsh made the following points:

As with all technology, Twitter has multiple proponents and opponents.

He expects that use of Twitter to  grow.

Twitter is not as popularly used as a learning tool.

Reasons faculty use Twitter are:

  • To share information with peers
  • As a real time news source

Walsh  found the comments  in the report very “valuable” and he  read  some of the comments in this vlog.

In the end ,he concluded  that “ there is some validity to all comments;  and there are benefits and challenges to using Twitter in the classroom but overall  he encourages people  to keep an open mind and  to remember that Twitter is only one of the tools available to educators”

Reflective:

Watching Walsh’s vlog made me so curious about the ‘special report” that  I even signed up as a member of Faculty Focus  just to download their report. Although the video log was short and sweet ;  I spent almost 1 day and a half following the links.  Like Walsh, I enjoyed the comments in the report and I can identify with the people that oppose using Twitter in education. Their general argument was that most do not want to take the time or does not have the time to learn “one more thing”. Another reason used was that only a few students actually use Twitter and are familiar with it.  Apparently, although lots of people sign-up, Twitter only has a 40% retention rate  for their service.(Wolfe, 2011 )

Faculty Focus phrased  the argument “a new trend emerging centered on the belief that many feel they have already too many places to post messages or check students for questions or comments” (Faculty Focus, special Report Sept 2010 p2)

Opponents also say that 140 character limit would not allow for in-depth discussions of material. (Duh!)  Opponents also say that it leads to atrocious writing/spelling.
( I can see why)

Overall,  I do agree with Mr. Walsh that one needs to keep an open mind and to consider these as mechanisms/tools and not education.(Walsh, 2010)

Interpretive:

I identify more with the reasoning used by the opponents of using Twitter in Education. Given my personality and the work I do, the many hats I wear; I have often put “technological stuff” to the back burner.Hence, I chose to take this particular course in the summer, I can only do this now because this is the time of the year when I have fewer things on my plate.  I do not want to waste time learning something and then having it  become obsolete just when I have about learned it. Updates and changes in technology  is something I get to  eventually when it starts to  impact my work and life.

Technology has changed the way people do things; how we communicate, more e-mails instead of phone calls or letters. Mobile phones allow people to reach us at any point in time. I feel I am constantly just trying to catch up. I feel a strong  need  to put a limit /boundary in how  technology  will invade my life. I think it would benefit all of us to slow down and have time  for reflection and deeper thinking.

Like any existing web2.0 technology, learning to use Twitter would demand precious  time and effort which I can use elsewhere that would lead to more productive and real time output. The fact that it is technology also implies that there will be constant system upgrade (continually learning)  Just like a comment from one of the  opponents of Twitter in that report( Faculty Focus 2010), I do not want to ” waste time learning something and then having it  become obsolete just when I have about learned it”.

My general impression of Twitter before taking the course was that it was a way for people to “chitchat” about mundane things or merely for gossip and entertainment titbits, which I think is not a unique opinion. hence the  140 character limit per text. Watching and reading these articles certainly broadened my horizons.

After these readings on Twitter, I know now that Twitter’s strength lies in its so called “real time” applications; it’s  a place for sharing information as it happens and for connecting with others in real time. It allows a person to connect with a mass audience and it’s an effective way to get news out in a flash as was the case in the Arab Spring incident last year (Globe and Mail, 2011).

Proponents of Twitter in education seem to suggest that once one gets the hang of it and understands how to use it, Tweeter has great potential as a viable educational tool.  They believe that success will depend on careful construction of parameters regarding usage.  In other words, teachers/instructors need to do the prep work.

From this perspective, Twitter would be  similar to any other tools teachers have used. “Raw Twitter promotes competitiveness but controlled Twitter offers opportunities to foster collaboration”( a comment in response to Rosie Miles, June 2012 )

Decisional:

My foray into social media has just started, I have enjoyed reading through the articles and blogs; I am grateful that I have at least this time to do this course. I will keep an open mind.Tools like Twitter will continue to be developed as we go further into the digital age. It might not be an issue of the tool (Twitter) but more an issue of who the users of the tools are, how willing they are to try,explore and learn new technology.

It was exciting to read about all the new technologies that are being developed for use in education. Children grow up to become adults, if the children and future students are in it, I think it’s the responsibility of a “good” teacher” not just to keep an open mind but to investigate and consider harnessing  these tools for better student engagement and learning.

One professor, Dr. Monica Rankin tried the Twitter experiment and acknowledges the fact that limiting the discussion to 140 characters per tweet was not ideal. On the other hand, she also mentioned that this helps students to be as concise with their point as possible.. The feedback she got  from her students were very positive and Dr Rankin herself was very pleased with the results. With a class of 90 students and only 50 minutes to teach, allowing the use of Twitter gave nearly everyone in her class a chance to participate and give their comments.(  Kesmit3, 2009)

Another  example, is a  senior lecturer at the University of Wolverhampton , UK; she  used Twitter’s idea of limiting 140 characters for student comments in a virtual learning environment (VLE) discussion forum. She had her students  comment on the character they role-play in their Victorian literature class. (Miles,  June 2012)

She used the VLE because  she felt this made it a “safer” on line space for her class”; safer in the sense that only class participants will be privy to the discussion. . However, she  used Twitters idea of character limit.( Miles, June 2012)

Let’s face it, Twitter was not intended to be used in education. It serves more as a social tool for people to connect. They find Tweeter use more applicable to Mobile users. The fact that this is being used in education simply strengthens the notion that collaboration or sharing of ideas does generate more ideas and hopefully leads to the betterment the whole society.It supports the whole idea of open learning. I am sure that as more people join in the discussion, as more educators try and post their experiences with Twitter, it will lead to innovations maybe in Tweeter itself or something similar that may eventually be geared to education. But perhaps it already is in the works, but I am just not fast enough to learn it yet. One thing for sure, there needs to be a paradigm shift, I believe the landscape has changed and will continue to change. Generally people resist change.I am the same way but I can’t help but feel grateful that I am in a course that is helping me with social media. It’s given me additional tools I can use in my profession. As I become more familiar with it, that shift will occur. After all , it was the turtle that won the race. Perseverance wins in the end.

References:

The Globe and Mail  August- September 2011 Twitter’s Influence on the Arab Spring URL  http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/twitters-influence-on-the-arab-spring/article638649/

Kesmit3( May,2009) The Twitter experiment-twitter in the classroom retrieved July 17,2012 from URL http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WPVWDkF7U8&feature=watch_response

Miles, R (June, 2012) Teaching with Twitter; How the Social network can contribute to learning,  The Guardian  retrieved on July 17,2012 URL http://www.guardian.co.uk/higher-education-network/blog/2012/jun/11/teaching-with-twitter

Twitter in Higher Education 2010: Usage Habits and Trends of Today’s College faculty  ,  Magna Publications  retrieved July 17,2012 from URL

http://www.facultyfocus.com/free-reports/twitter-in-higher-education-2010-usage-habits-and-trends-of-todays-college-faculty/

Walsh, K (February, 2010) 100 ways to teach with Twitter  EmergingEdTech retreived July 16th ,2012 URL http://www.emergingedtech.com/2010/02/100-ways-to-teach-with-twitter/

Walsh, K ( October, 2010 )  The Growing Use of twitter by Today’s Educators  EmergingEdTech retrieved July 16,2012 URL   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFP07a3ThAs

Wolfe,L (September,2011) Twitter Statistics by About.com Guide retrieved July 17,2012 URL  http://womeninbusiness.about.com/od/twittertips/a/twitter-statistics.htm

 

Creative Commons License
This work by https://arlenes3240.wordpress.com/ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

WEB 2.0 -Vidigami

The web 2.0 application I have chosen to write about is Vidigami (www.Vidigami.com)
Vidigami offers a free, secure photo sharing site targeted at schools and educators. The company was formed in 2010 so they are still in their pilot stage. Their site allows each member of the particular group to upload their photos of school events throughout the year. Some examples might include fieldtrips, sports days, special celebrations, Christmas/winter festivities, and Spring/Easter programs. These pictures are then compiled into a digital class year book (in DVD format) for the teacher to show at the end of the year. Parents who desire to have a copy order it on line straight from Vidigami. The set up is such that contributions or uploading of photos can come from anyone registered in the appropriate group. Parents can flag their favorite photos. They also offer a custom /individualized year book of specific children. Parents would have to order this on line from them as well.
Personally, I think this is a great site for schools and educators, especially for teachers of young preschool children. More and more parents are sending their young children to preschool and. most parents would love to have a glimpse into their preschooler’s day. Depending on the child, some preschoolers are able to talk about their day while others are non-verbal or would just say “OK”.
Parents or teachers can take pictures of the students when they are “in action” and upload these to the site. Uploading the photos they take of their students while in class on a regular basis provides the parents a window into their child’s world at preschool. It records in some ways a child’s growth and development in their early years. The photos are compiled into a beautiful DVD at the end of the year as a precious keepsake. It could potentially be a win-win situation for all (parents, teachers and administrators) provided issues like confidentiality and liability are addressed.

Creative Commons License
This work by https://arlenes3240.wordpress.com/ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Trend and Tech art 2

Technology and trend –article 2

Arlene Si

Adult Education and the Social Media Revolution

By: LeNoue, Marvin; Hall, Tom; Eighmy, Myron A. Adult Learning. Spring2011, Vol. 22 Issue 2, p4-12. 9p.

Synopsis:

This article discusses the suitability of Web 2.0 as a tool for delivering adult education. Since 1970, the demand for distance education has grown significantly as globalization forces people to become lifelong learners.

The accessibility and convenience of using digitally mediated learning is creating a trend towards blended education. The author foresees a future that used digitally mediated learning to accommodate an even greater number of students than before hence lowering the cost/student.

The article states that on-line education which has grown substantially is based on a constructivist model of education that focuses on collaborative learning, knowledge construction, problem solving, critical thinking skills and autonomous learning all of which are in line with the principles of adult education. Instructors just need to ensure that course design will deploy tools and activities that facilitate and encourage interaction of the students with the web, with each other. Social media is ideal because it has the capacity to meet the diverse need of adult learners as it provides a wealth of knowledge/resources.

Aside from this, the author also recommended use of a personal learning environment or what he calls PLE which are home pages for the student to serve as an access point for on-line interaction.

He noted that adult learners bring with them a wealth of information negative and positive that may and may not help with this foray into social media. It is important for the instructor to put in structures to scaffold the learning of all participants in order to ensure maximum learning. Instructors act more as facilitators as learners become more participatory. Focus changes from the instructor to the student.

He concluded that technology afford customization of learning to the individual needs of each student as learners actively create their own learning processes, it leads to lifelong learning.

Reading this article helped me realize why Pru has given us the kind of assignment we have. I do see that as the world increasingly become more global, that adults everywhere will see the need for lifelong learning and the best way to deliver it would be through the web because it allows for more customization. But I feel a little overwhelmed with all these information…how about the rest of you?

The article can be found at:

http://cclsw2.vcc.ca:2053/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?vid=3&hid=10&sid=7341aa35-760f-4a3f-b494-39bebf7876ca%40sessionmgr4

Reference:

LeNouie, M; Hall, T; Eighmy, M A. (2011) Adult Education and the Social Media Revolution. Adult Learning Spring 2011, Vol.22 Issue 2, P4-12. 9p.

Creative Commons License
This work by https://arlenes3240.wordpress.com/ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Trend and Tech article 1

Technology and Trends article 1

Arlene Si

Synopsis:

Though Singapore‘s future depend on technology and innovation, it’s citizen’s are not as eager to embrace the public nature of the interactive Web.2.0Though other people find the experience of working collaboratively on a wiki  invaluable, students from the Singapore management University are having a hard time embracing  the use of Web2.0.  The public, open nature of the tool and the ability to change other people’s work are factors that do not sit well with cultural norms. In the Asian context, keeping face or not embarrassing one another in public by being sensitive to each other valued.  The fact that the assignments ask people to put up work in progress is also another deterrent it seems.

One professor noted that having been used to students being outspoken and vocal before coming to Singapore, he found student mentality in Singapore often   is the opposite. He had to make it an assignment for his students to go on Twitter.  He said “the sarcasm and edginess he is accustomed to seeing in American classrooms was absent, Singaporeans tend to practice a certain level of self-control when communicating on-line” (Young, 2010)

The article gave possible explanations for this difference in characteristics of students, Dr. Nesbitt, a Psychology professor from University of Michigan,” argues that the difference stems from contrasting notions that people grew up with about the complexity of the world.” (Young, 2010)

Professor Nesbitt argued that whereas “the western world sees the world as a series of objects to be rationally controlled and easily described, those in the east focus on the flow of systems they see as connected in complex and ineffable ways”.(Young,  2010) Therefore this leads to Asian tendencies for silence while sorting through issues. He also mentioned that in the east, silence rather than words have often been equated knowledge.

Then again, another obvious and practical reason might be due to the fact that the Singaporean government monitors on-line speech. This would certainly inhibit people from speaking out. There was a man arrested because he criticized a government minister. His arrest led to widespread complaints, which came in the form of blogs and tweets about government’s overreaction.  This incident just proves that change is on its way, use of Web 2.0 will be the norm on both side of the hemisphere though it might just take a little more time in the east.

I chose this article because I can identify with the reticence felt by the Singaporean students, like them, it will take a continual exposure before I can feel truly comfortable with the public nature of this media. The societal shift in communication is forcing me towards use of this technology. Perhaps it’s the same for every other person. Please comment on what it’s been like for you and the world of web2.0.

You can find the article href=”http://cclsw2.vcc.ca:2048/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=53997128&site=ehost-live”>In Wired Singapore, Classrooms and Cultures Clash Over Web 2.0.</A

Reference:

Young, J R (2010) In Wired Singapore, Classrooms and Cultures Clash Over Web 2.0.

Chronicle of Higher Education; 9/17/2010, Vol. 57 Issue 4, pA10-A10, 1p, 1 Color Photograph

Creative Commons License
This work by https://arlenes3240.wordpress.com/ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Journal 2 – The Game Layer on Top of the World- a TED talk by Seth Priebatsch

July 5th, 2012

Objective

In this TED talk, Seth Priebatsch ,  talks about what he calls sort of a new concept-“  building a game layer on top of the world.” According to Seth, whereas the last decade was marked by social connections in the web as evidenced by Face book’s success,  this decade will be about using “game dynamics to influence people’s behaviour. In this talk, he presents 4 of these game dynamics and substantiates it with real life examples already happening.

 

Reflective:

When I first heard”chief ninja at SCVNGR”, I had to ask, am I suppose to know what SCVNGR stands for? Is this something a ‘connected ‘person should know.

My initial gut reaction was “what is he talking about?????”  “What do you mean a game layer o top of the world” and what is ‘Open graph” I could not make head or heels of his talk.  I had to download the transcript, read it by myself then listened to his talk again before I could figure out what I needed to do next.

Why is this talk even on this course?

In the end, I felt that the talk was a sales pitch to entrepreneurs/business to invest in his company or at least to convince people of his company’s potential profitability.

Interpretive:

I reacted very strongly because I felt defensive about my limited technical knowledge.  I looked up SCVNGR on Chrome and found out it was a pretty new company founded by the speaker. He was quite successful in using the idea of scavenger hunts and turning this into a game application on mobile phones. Jason Kincaid writing for Techcrunch.com had this to say about SCVNGR “SCVNGR is one young start-up that’s managed to tap into a niche market very successfully.” (Kincaid, 2009) In that same article, Mr. Kincaid also explained that though SVNGR  was  only launched in fall 2008, by that time, “ it’s already seen use by over 300 universities, including Harvard and Princeton, as well as corporations, who have used the company’s enterprise-grade game builder for things like employee team building exercises and orientation events”(Kincaid,2009)

Pretty good for a school drop-out (my prejudices show up again) It sounded like he is pretty successful and assumed that everyone would have heard of SCVNGR. In his talk, Mr. Priebatsch just assumed that everyone in his audience knew what he was talking about. I think if he’d taken some public speaking courses, he would have a more successful sales pitch. But then again, maybe the problem is not with him but with me. After all, he is the one with the start-up company.

I wondered why the talk is on this course. I guess, we are listening to his talk because it is a good example of application of intellectual property and copyright law. Mr. Priebatsch took a very common idea (scavenger hunts) and transformed it into game application for mobile phones. He copyrighted his idea and is now profiting from it (at least it sounds like he is) But is it really an original idea? The ingenuity is his adaptation of an old idea and evolving it into something usable in the 21st century.

Mr. Priebatsch also mentioned how his 2nd dynamic “Influence and status” can also be used in school. In his exact words, “why have games that you can lose?” This again is not a novel idea; there are many books out there that espouse cooperative games. He should be commended for thinking out of the box. He is using game applications that take advantage of intrinsic human behaviours. He is using different terminology, but essentially theses ideas have been around. The need for routine/structure (appointment dynamics) the need to be recognized and appreciated (influence/status), the need to grow (progress dynamic) and the need for community (communal discovery)

Another obvious reason that his talk is part of this course might be because his ideas have the potential to change/affect education in the future. From an Early Childhood Educator’s point of view, I could not agree more. Play is a child’s work and in play the child is making meaning of their world, unfortunately in our school system, play is not valued and we prefer to teach according to the test.

In the article by Jason Kincaid, he cited 3 universities using SCVNGR social location based gaming program as orientation for new students to their campus and libraries. (Kincaid 2009)

Decisional:

What do I take away from this? Coming from an Asian culture, where education is valued above all else, learning about SCVNGR’s success is another proof that it’s what one does with one’s knowledge that leads to ‘success”. This made me reflect on my role as an early childhood educator and how some parents of the school are pushing for more academic content in curriculum.  I am reminded that I ought to support intellectual learning more than just academic learning and perhaps I will need to start sharing this idea with the parents. Academic knowledge is good to have but what’s more important for children to learn is that they know how to apply that knowledge in life and how to seek what they do not know. Asian parents pushing for more academics in programming  am I supporting children to think In the end, it’s what one does with one’s knowledge that

References:

Kincaid, J (2009), SCVNGR Let’s You Build Awesome Scavenger Hunts For Any Mobile Phone, retrieved on July 3, 2012 from http://techcrunch.com/2009/08/13/scvngr-lets-you-build-awesome-scavenger-hunts-for-any-mobile-

Priebatsch, S (2010), “The Game Layer on Top of the World”, retrieved on July 3, 2010 from

http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/seth_priebatsch_the_game_layer_on_top_of_the_world.html

Creative Commons License
This work by https://arlenes3240.wordpress.com/ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Journal 1 How Social media can make History- TED talk by Clay Shirky

Objective

On this TED talk, Clay Shirky claims that “our historical generation is living through the largest increase in expressive capability in human history” (Shirky, 2009) made possible by internet. That the “internet is the first medium in history that has native support for groups and conversation at the same time” (Shirky, 2009). Instead of just being a source of information, because of the interaction possible amongst the participants, it also becoming a site for coordination. “People are not just consumers but also producers.” (Shirky, 2009) hence this results in constant innovation. He tells the story of what happened with news broadcasting in China during the Sichuan earthquake and the story of how Obama campaigners used MyBarackObama.com to support the idea of media transformation, its impact on history and the need to use this medium with maturity and discipline.

Reflective:

Wow, I am so out of touch. I must be one of the least internet savvy person…I still only ever use the web for looking up information.

It sounds like while Shirky is praising Obama’s wise use of the web; he seems to be implying with the China stories about the inevitability of controlling it.

I agree with Shirky, that the web is the best way to get one’s message across to everyone, that people who will use it needs to use it with discipline and maturity. I wonder if there is a universal guideline or social etiquette for these things…  I think of cyberbullying happening in schools… Our lives today are centered very much on the availability of internet connection.- cell phones, iPods, androids has features that will allow us to tweet, Face book even while we are on the go. The anonymity provided by the web also encourages people to put in their 2 cents worth on the subject matter. No wonder we are asked to research on copyright. With so many amateurs contributing, it will be hard to filter whose original idea it is. Each student will need to work harder at checking their sources filtering through the mountain of information available. It’s going to be hard to find the “right” answer. I am glad I chose this option. But there sure is a lot of material to go through.

Interpretive:

I’m thinking about How Obama proved his integrity by not shutting down the site even when his supporters were against his idea. He maintained his stand because he understood their role.  This is what defines America-freedom of speech.

The Chinese government was doing what they deemed best for their country by turning off the entire service rather than risk chaos. Forget about freedom of speech…

People tend to look at things from their own coloured lenses. Although I agree that 2 or more heads are better than one, I do not know that I am completely comfortable with the way the web is going…the interactivity allows people to connect more, it can also allow the wrong idea to be blown out of proportion… Being a shy/ private person, I’ve had always an aversion to anything public. I also have perfectionist tendencies, so the idea of sharing my work in public and having peers comment really scares me. I hesitate joining any social networking sites and is not even a member of face book or twitter. Because of the nature of this new media, it has the capacity to be a change agent and used for good or evil so to speak.

Decisional:

I can see how I can make use of this media transformation at work. I have to learn to overcome my own attitudinal barriers because pursuing further education for me would also mean I need to engage in this medium more vigorously. I will need to let the ideas of social learning/cooperative learning and connectivism grow on me.

Creative Commons License
This work by https://arlenes3240.wordpress.com/ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized