Welcome to Daniel K. Schneider's Wikilog about educational technology, technologies, and related subjects.
It is used both as a personal blog and for announcing EdutechWiki news (for older news we just used a wiki page).
Other users too can and should have a wikilog, but it never happened so far....
Expanding Your Horizons (EYH) is an international program created to allow 11 to 14 year old girls attending public or private schools to discover the numerous careers available in the areas of science and technology.
Attending SMWCon Fall 2013.
- Good talks and discussion.
- We also have a talk: Adding power to educational and research wikis with Semantic MediaWiki (local copy, slides)
Have a look at: Patricia M. Greenfield (2009). Technology and Informal Education: What is taught and what is learned, Science, 323, 69-71. PDF reprint.
While the article focuses on learning from using technology it goes beyound and includes an interesting list of references. Quote “[...] no one medium can do everything. Every medium has its strengths and weaknesses; every medium develops some cognitive skills at the expense of others. Although the visual capabilities of television, video games, and the Internet may develop impressive visual intelligence, the cost seems to be deep processing: mindful knowledge acquisition, inductive analysis, critical thinking, imagination, and reflection.”
Interesting literature review:
Dworkin, J., Connell, J., & Doty, J. (2013). A literature review of parents’ online behavior. Cyberpsychology: Journal of Psychosocial Research on Cyberspace, 7(2), article 2. doi: 10.5817/CP2013-2-2
Quote: “This literature review revealed that parents go online to search for parenting information and social support and generally report satisfaction with the resources they find on the Internet. Parents still express hesitation in trusting various online resources, though, and desire greater education in Internet searching and deciphering the credibility of online information.” (Abstract).
The review also points out that more research is needed and that not all parents may be informed consumers of online information...
This wiki now runs under development code. I finally decided that it was both easier on system administration, safer and more exciting since we can play with bleeding edge extensions. To investigate: The skin for Firefox/Ubuntu can create overlaps.
We started using Semantic MediaWiki (SMW) and various extensions like Semantic Forms for real. I will update here once we got something to show. I do think that SMW does have great potential for both research and education. For example, see the Galaxy Zoo page. The template behind was styled by Julien for our EU Citizen CyberLab project. Presentation of structured information can be nice in a wiki and editing with forms is easy. In addition, one can create automatic summary tables and more ... stay tuned.
Over the summer we had two classes contributing, one from from Memorial University, Canada and another from Saarland University, Germany. I'd like to express my thanks to both teachers and students ! I'll post more about these contributions, sometimes later.
An interesting new book by Gerry Stahl. Quote:
“The wellsprings of human creativity and logical thinking that flowed forth in the origins of Greek geometry were progressively covered over and transformed into regulated procedures and otherworldly objects. 20th century philosophy frames this cover-up as a paradigmatic example of the over-reach of rationalization. In the sequence of world-historic epochs, successive reification of phenomena of geometry and more generally of the being of objects altered the relation of people to reality. These transformations are associated with the rise of rationalism and an ideology of individualism. Although these changes brought powerful advantages, they now need to be balanced by an approach of human-centered informatics, which guides students to understand the principles of geometry as products of human creative-discovery.” (p. 29).
This book has passages addressing problems beyond geometry, i.e. I bought it because it also addresses design “The proposed conception of geometry emphasizes the central role of the construction of dependencies as a design activity, integrating human creation and mathematical discovery to form a human-centered approach to mathematics.” (Abstract)
Ebikes are trendy, because they allow for fast and easy transport in cities. In addition, they can be used for commuting and they positively contribute to our planet's ecology. There are interesting opportunities for education:
- Technical design and STEM principles: An ebike as learning object can be used to study mechanics, physics and electronics.
- Technical design (advanced): At least one of the better designs was made in collaboration with an engineering school
- Technical design and fabrication (DYI): E-bikes can be hand-crafted, i.e. be used as ambitious object in a design and fabrication class
- Teaching evaluation methodology: Evaluation of e-bikes is relatively easy, and could be conducted as a class project
Now with respect to "fast". Some countries do not seem to have any restrictions, but most do. E.g. in Germany or Switzerland you are allowed to buy ratified pedal-assisted bikes that provide assistance to 45km/h. If you live in France or the UK you are out of luck ...
Read more in electric bikes in education
Via Edsurge: The Mozilla Foundation officially unveiled Version 1.0 of its Open Badges project at the Digital Media and Learning Conference last week. It's the culmination of eight months of beta testing and development, during which over 600 companies, non-profits, foundations, and other organizations have issued over 60,000 badges.
Badges may replace / complement some of the more traditional certification schemes (e.g. formal continuous education certificates delivered by universities and training companies).
After a few years of waiting, I created the menu that users who upload pictures and other files can use for specifying a copyright. Of course, the default copyright remains the same. But since we often reuse pictures from other sources, authors in this wiki should reproduce more systematically the appropriate copyright. It could be done before, but the menu makes it easier ...
It is not easy to get something that is both not too complicated and appropriate for various purposes. Comments welcome :)
Read Open content, a piece I wrote some years ago and that certainly would need some updating ...
Read Students Think They Can Multitask. Here’s Proof They Can’t. A commented list of research articles.
The Citizen Cyberlab is a three-year EU-funded citizen science project to study and enhance the opportunities for learning and creativity available to participants in online citizen science projects. We are partners.
The logo was found by Margaret Gold during lunch time in Paris (see where)
I upgraded the software to MediaWiki 1.20.x and also updated all major extensions. Everything seems to work fine.
Recently, some elite universities managed to convey the idea that the future is MOOCs, in the same vein that a few years ago they sponsored Open educational resources, a largely unsuccessful initiative.
IMHO, teachers and learners from developing countries and poor universities in the western world are in danger of thinking themselves as vessels meant to receive academic hamburgers. Wake up and start doing something on your own ! So let me point out that, initially, MOOCs were neither designed for one-way teaching nor as propaganda tool. I suggest to distinguish between real MOOCs that adopt connectivism (or other open education models) and MOOCs that largely adopt a tele-teaching model invented in the 1960's plus bits of peer tutoring sugar. Nevertheless, there are situations where so-called "xMOOCs" that are very close to traditional teaching (lectures, weekly structured work, etc.) can be useful, e.g. advanced classes in specialized subject areas.
With respect to connectivist MOOcs, read:
- MOOC’s and the McDonaldization of Global Higher Education By Jason Lane and Kevin Kinser, September 28, 2012, The Chronicle of Higher Education.
- Downes, Stephen (2012). Connectivism and Connective Knowledge, Essays on meaning and learning networks, National Research Council Canada, PDF (free 600p. e-book), Version 1.0 – May 19, 2012, retrieved nov 2012.
- Siemens, G. (2004). Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. International Journal of Instructional Technology and Distance Learning. , retrieved 13:44, 9 March 2011 (CET) from http://www.itdl.org/Journal/Jan_05/article01.htm
- What is a connectivist MOOC? (http://www.connectivistmoocs.org/)
- Three kinds of MOOCs by Lisa M. Lane.
- MOOCs, Courseware, and the Course as an Artifact, April 12, 2013 by Michael Feldstein.
- The Great Rebranding by Stephen Downes, April 13, 2013
Quotes from Siemens (2004):
- Behaviorism, cognitivism, and constructivism are the three broad learning theories most often utilized in the creation of instructional environments. These theories, however, were developed in a time when learning was not impacted through technology. Over the last twenty years, technology has reorganized how we live, how we communicate, and how we learn. Learning needs and theories that describe learning principles and processes, should be reflective of underlying social environments.
- Connectivism is the integration of principles explored by chaos, network, and complexity and self-organization theories. Learning is a process that occurs within nebulous environments of shifting core elements – not entirely under the control of the individual. Learning (defined as actionable knowledge) can reside outside of ourselves (within an organization or a database), is focused on connecting specialized information sets, and the connections that enable us to learn more are more important than our current state of knowing.
More thoughts and resources can be found in George Siemen's Connectivism blog. Also look at connectivistmoocs.org. For example, a distinction is made between cMOOCs and xMOOCs: “A shorthand has emerged which distinguishes between connectivist courses – cMOOCs – and ones that are more broadcast-focused and reliant upon certification and peer testing. Organisations such as coursera, Udacity and EdX are examples of the xMOOC category.” (retrieved no 18, 2012).
Last week I started my first serious 3D printing project: Develop a toolkit that I named (so far) "Lego-compatible thesis project boards".
The idea is that candidates configure a board with the most important "project management" elements of their thesis, i.e. tasks (most important), issues and problems, and finally chapter writing.
Currently, I am still experimenting with various designs, e.g. a 2 1/2 D design or a 3D design using stackable towers.
Read more in:
Quote: “This free, open and online course (MOOC) has been designed with further and higher education professionals in mind - lecturers, qualification teams, awarding bodies, learning technologists, library and student support staff and learning and teaching specialists - but may also be of interest to teachers (or teachers to be) in secondary schools or informal/work based learning facilitators, in fact, anyone with an interest in curriculum and learning design. The course has been funded by JISC as part of a benefits realisation programme and is intended to build on the success of the Open University Learning Design Initiative (OULDI) (OULDI) and other JISC funded curriculum design and delivery projects.”, retrieved oct. 13 2012.
Course home page: http://www.olds.ac.uk/
MOOCs are somewhat controversial (e.g. described as marketing gimmik for those big universities who failed with their OER programs). For people interested or working in EduTech, this class should be a good occasion to get a first-hand experience.
Well, no big news. Of course over the summer there have been additions and changes to Wiki. None deserved a post on the front page though. I'll be more active during winter time :)
Just a few:
- I had to install Ubuntu for my new desktop machine. The new 12.04 LTS version is quite a disaster. Had to spend half a day figuring out how to install it. I got a real vanilla system (Dell Optiplex 990), but includes a decent Nividia Quadro 600 graphics card. The normal install CD could not deal with this system, and the alternative one didn't complete because it made the wrong assumptions about the graphics. Had to modify the Grub boot loader file. This is not acceptable. Once Ubuntu was installed, I discovered some horrible UI decisions, for example Mac-like centralized menus, absence of essential system tools and so forth. To get a half-way working system I had to spend another half day :( ... Read this. Why can't they keep it simple and efficient ? If I want Windows or Mac I get one of these and actually I also do.
- Last week I spend some time designing a castle kit for Legos. That was fun and people seem to like it, though I have no idea if anyone uses it. See it on thingiverse. The idea behind was to test modular designing and Lego-size 3D printing. I'll create something that is more in line with EduTech sometimes in the future. In fall 2013, I'll have students working on construction kits.
- This month we will start working on learning and creativity in citizen science. I also will look further into learning process analytics. Stay tuned over the next three years.
- Winter is coming sometimes soon(picture to the right).
Below are our EdMedia 2012 contributions.
- Depover, C. & Schneider, D. (2012). Opportunities and requirements for socio-constructivist learning in Web 2.0. In T. Amiel & B. Wilson (Eds.), Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2012 (pp. 1861-1869). Chesapeake, VA: AACE. Retrieved from http://www.editlib.org/p/41002.
- Sugar Chmiel, A. & Schneider, D. (2012). Exploring the use of a non-linear learning module with interactive video. In T. Amiel & B. Wilson (Eds.), Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2012 (pp. 1239-1247). Chesapeake, VA: AACE. Retrieved from http://www.editlib.org/p/40909.
- Schneider, D., Class, B., Benetos, K. & Lange, M. (2012). Requirements for learning scenario and learning process analytics. In T. Amiel & B. Wilson (Eds.), Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and Telecommunications 2012 (pp. 1632-1641). Chesapeake, VA: AACE. Retrieved from http://www.editlib.org/p/40963.
- Learning process analytics (Modified Wiki version)
- directory with slides (not final nor complete)
My new Felix 3D printer arrived today. Since I am not a DYI fan (although I can assemble stuff if I must) I managed to order a fully assembled and calibrated version.
- Easy to carry around: It has got a practical handle on top.
- Prints with PLA: I much prefer this polymer since it doesn't stink like ABS and since it doesn't warp much. ABS is not too suitable for a small office, in particular since ABS does not like draft (a constant warm room temperature is better) and since ABS fumes are maybe not too healthy...
- The board and machine code are open source. That means that it works with more than one slicer software. Advanced users can rely on changing complex Skeinforge settings. Beginners can either use the default settings or play with Slic3r.
- I managed to print a DUPLO with my first print (that did not happen with my other 2 printers)
- It has a heated print bed. That means that no raft is needed, even for small difficult to print pieces like Lego blocks. Parts will stick.
- I don't know yet, except that printing with filament (so far all cheap printers work that way) does have its inherent limitations.
Read more: Felix 3D printer
I also managed to get a good hold on the fabbster printer I got earlier this spring. The fabbster works with closed source software and is optimized for printing with ABS "sticks" that we will receive any time soon. Printing with ABS rolls works fine, but does require some thinking. It requires users to understand how a 3D printer works (speed/RPM relations) in order to be able to calibrate build and material styles.
Hot and very cool from Stian Håklev: A Google custom search engine for the best educational technology (and related) wikis.
Quote: “Did you know that there are more than 40 educational technology wikis out there? Of course, Wikipedia can be a good starting source, to look up concepts such as constructivism or cognitive psychology, but sometimes you want a more specialized source, and one that isn’t constrained by Wikipedia’s community norms (in academia, point of view isn’t always such a bad thing).”