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Ian Woods

AJET 26(3) Drexler (2010) - The networked student model for construction of personal learning environments: Balancing teacher control and student autonomy - 77 views

  • Web application(networked studentcomponent) Tool usedin test case Student activitylevel of structure Social bookmarking (RSS) Delicioushttp://delicious.com/ Set up the account Subscribe to each others accounts Bookmark and read 10 reliable websites that reflect the content of chosen topic Add and read at least 3 additional sites each week. News and blog alert (RSS) Google Alerthttp://www.google.com/alerts Create a Google Alert of keywords associated with selected topic Read news and blogs on that topic that are delivered via email daily Subscribe to appropriate blogs in reader News and blog reader (RSS) Google Readerhttp://reader.google.com Search for blogs devoted to chosen topic Subscribe to blogs to keep track of updates Personal blog (RSS) Bloggerhttp://www.blogger.com Create a personal blog Post a personal reflection each day of the content found and experiences related to the use of personal learning environment Students subscribe to each others blogs in reader Internet search (information management, contacts, and synchronous communication) Google Scholarhttp://scholar.google.com/ Conduct searches in Google Scholar and library databases for scholarly works. Bookmark appropriate sites Consider making contact with expert for video conference Podcasts (RSS) iTunesUhttp://www.apple.com/itunes/whatson/itunesu.html Search iTunesU for podcasts related to topic Subscribe to at least 2 podcasts if possible Video conferencing (contacts and synchronous communication) Skypehttp://www.skype.com Identify at least one subject matter expert to invite to Skype with the class. Content gathering/ digital notebook Evernotehttp://evernote.com/ Set up account Use Evernote to take notes on all content collected via other Tools Content synthesis Wikispaceshttp://www.wikispaces.com Post final project on personal page of class wiki The process and Tools are overwhelming to students if presented all at once. As with any Toolal design, the teacher determines the pace at which the students best assimilate each new learning Tool. For this particular project, a new Tool was introduced each day over two weeks. Once the construction process was complete, there were a number of personal web page aggregators that could have been selected to bring everything together in one place. Options at the time included iGoogle, PageFlakes, NetVibes, and Symbaloo. These sites offer a means to compile or pull together content from a variety of web applications. A web widget or gadget is a bit of code that is executed within the personal web page to pull up external content from other sites. The students in this case designed the personal web page using the gadgets needed in the format that best met their learning goals. Figure 3 is an instructor example of a personal webpage that includes the reader, email, personal blog, note taking program, and social bookmarks on one page. The personal learning environment can take the place of a traditional textbook, though does not preclude the student from using a textbook or accessing one or more numerous open source texts that may be available for the research topic. The goal is to access content from many sources to effectively meet the learning objectives. The next challenge is to determine whether those objectives have been met. Figure 3: Personal web page compiles learning Tools
  • Table 2: Personal learning environment toolset Web application (networked student component) tool used in test case Student activity level of structure Social bookmarking (RSS) Delicious http://delicious.com/ Set up the account Subscribe to each others accounts Bookmark and read 10 reliable websites that reflect the content of chosen topic Add and read at least 3 additional sites each week. News and blog alert (RSS) Google Alert http://www.google.com/alerts Create a Google Alert of keywords associated with selected topic Read news and blogs on that topic that are delivered via email daily Subscribe to appropriate blogs in reader News and blog reader (RSS) Google Reader http://reader.google.com Search for blogs devoted to chosen topic Subscribe to blogs to keep track of updates Personal blog (RSS) Blogger http://www.blogger.com Create a personal blog Post a personal reflection each day of the content found and experiences related to the use of personal learning environment Students subscribe to each others blogs in reader Internet search (information management, contacts, and synchronous communication) Google Scholar http://scholar.google.com/ Conduct searches in Google Scholar and library databases for scholarly works. Bookmark appropriate sites Consider making contact with expert for video conference Podcasts (RSS) iTunesU http://www.apple.com/itunes/ whatson/itunesu.html Search iTunesU for podcasts related to topic Subscribe to at least 2 podcasts if possible Video conferencing (contacts and synchronous communication) Skype http://www.skype.com Identify at least one subject matter expert to invite to Skype with the class. Content gathering/ digital notebook Evernote http://evernote.com/ Set up account Use Evernote to take notes on all content collected via other tools Content synthesis Wikispaces http://www.wikispaces.com Post final project on personal page of class wiki The process and tools are overwhelming to students if presented all at once. As with any toolal design, the teacher determines the pace at which the students best assimilate each new learning tool. For this particular project, a new tool was introduced each day over two weeks. Once the construction process was complete, there were a number of personal web page aggregators that could have been selected to bring everything together in one place. Options at the time included iGoogle, PageFlakes, NetVibes, and Symbaloo. These sites offer a means to compile or pull together content from a variety of web applications. A web widget or gadget is a bit of code that is executed within the personal web page to pull up external content from other sites. The students in this case designed the personal web page using the gadgets needed in the format that best met their learning goals. Figure 3 is an instructor example of a personal webpage that includes the reader, email, personal blog, note taking program, and social bookmarks on one page.
  • The personal learning environment can take the place of a traditional textbook, though does not preclude the student from using a textbook or accessing one or more numerous open source texts that may be available for the research topic. The goal is to access content from many sources to effectively meet the learning objectives. The next challenge is to determine whether those objectives have been met.
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  • AssessmentThere were four components of the assessment process for this test case of the Networked Student Model: (1) Ongoing performance assessment in the form of weekly assignments to facilitate the construction and maintenance of the personal learning environment, (2) rubric-based assessment of the personal learning environment at the end of the project, (3) written essay, and (4) multimedia synthesis of topic content. Points were earned for meeting the following requirements: Identify ten reliable resources and post to social bookmarking account. At least three new resources should be added each week. Subscribe and respond to at least 3 new blogs each week. Follow these blogs and news alerts using the reader. Subscribe to and listen to at least two podcasts (if available). Respectfully contact and request a video conference from a subject matter expert recognised in the field. Maintain daily notes and highlight resources as needed in digital notebook. Post at least a one-paragraph reflection in personal blog each day. At the end of the project, the personal learning environment was assessed with a rubric that encompassed each of the items listed above. The student's ability to synthesise the research was further evaluated with a reflective essay. Writing shapes thinking (Langer & Applebee, 1987), and the essay requirement was one more avenue through which the students demonstrated higher order learning. The personal blog provided an opportunity for regular reflection during the course of the project. The essay was the culmination of the reflections along with a thoughtful synthesis of the learning experience. Students were instructed to articulate what was learned about the selected topic and why others should care or be concerned. The essay provided an overview of everything learned about the contemporary issue. It was well organised, detailed, and long enough to serve as a resource for others who wished to learn from the work. As part of a final exam, the students were required to access the final projects of their classmates and reflect on what they learned from this exposure. The purpose of this activity was to give the students an additional opportunity to share and learn from each other. Creativity is considered a key 21st century skill (Partnership for 21st Century Skills, 2009). A number of emerging web applications support the academic creative process. Students in this project used web tools to combine text, video, audio, and photographs to teach the research topics to others. The final multimedia project was posted or embedded on the student's personal wiki page. tool and assessment of student work was facilitated by the very technologies in use by the students. In order to follow their progress, the teacher simply subscribed to student social bookmarking accounts, readers, and blogs. Clicking through daily contributions was relatively quick and efficient.
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    Scholarly and important but also practical. Scroll down for an incredible chart of ideas that challenges older students to take charge of their own learning.
Jim Tiffin Jr

Word Clouds in Education: Turn a toy into a tool - 107 views

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    Most word cloud programs work in the same, straight-forward way; the more a word is used in the text, the bigger it is shown in the cloud. A glance at a cloud is an easy way to preview a passage, or to analyze text.
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