Week 2: My Reflections on Alec Couros Video

First off is my thoughts on how I am going to use my blog.  I think it will be more like a journal of my journey for this course and spend most of my time reflecting on what I am doing, why I am doing it and the new things I want to try.

I have even found the link to his video presentation and slideshow:  http://educationaltechnology.ca/couros/1890

I found the Alec Couros video thought-provoking in a number of areas, but particularly the following:

  • The idea of digital visitor v digital resident –> digital citizenship

 I know that I am a digit immigrant rather than a digital native and I think that I am doing ok on the immigration front with being open to trying new things.  However, I’m not so sure about becoming a digital resident.  I suppose I’ve read too much about online stalking and identity theft to be totally comfortable with the idea of putting too much information about me out there.  I’m also a private person by nature, an introvert who doesn’t socialise that much.  Maybe that is why some of my posts have an Asgard as its picture (I’m a big sci-fy fan and love Stargate).  It appears I may want to rethink my online persona as I think becoming a digital resident is going to be important in the future.

  • Informal learning
    I love learning, I always have and I have spent most of my life in some form of learning environment.  Starting my tertiary education in the early 80s meant using books – library books and textbooks.  I learned a lot from that, always getting side tracked with interesting titbits I would find – often totally unrelated to what I was looking for, but often these titbits would come in useful somewhere.  I’m not that efficient at using the Internet for research, mainly because I don’t know what keywords to use so I tend to fluff around a lot finding things and generally trying to follow my nose.  Maybe that is why I tend to use Wikipedia as my first source of finding out about a topic – so that I have a general understanding of the key concepts which then gives me something to research on.I feel sorry for the students of today who only use the Internet for research – they don’t seem to understand the importance of reading around a topic, finding other key words for the topic they haven’t thought about.  An example of this came to me the other day after one of my classes.  A student was working on an assignment for a different class and he was saying he couldn’t find anything about it.  I told him how I used Wikipedia and he said it hadn’t helped him.  He showed me what Wikipedia had on his topic – it could actually help him as a key document was mentioned, it just wasn’t hyperlinked.  So I said I would just Google the name of the key document, which he did, and within the results there was one which was just what he was looking for.  I suspect a lot of students are missing out on how to learn by their basic use of Google and seeing Google as the only way to find answers – rather than using Google as a starting point and actually reading and thinking about what they read.
  • What is literacy?
    This was an interesting comment as so much of NZ education is about making sure our students have literacy and numeracy skills for the future, however, there doesn’t seem to be that much about information literacy which is what I took Alec to be talking about.  I thing the above example shows that there is a missing skill in the processing of all of the information now available to us.
  • Reverse Instruction
    I must admit this idea sounded so obvious to me once it was mentioned.  I often don’t get my slide show up more than a day before my class (if it isn’t on the same day).  I often upload a student version of the slide show so that any questions which I might want them to think about don’t have the answers also given.  I like the idea of recording the lecture (even though I totally dislike hearing and seeing myself on video).  This means that no-one has to miss class if they are ill and in fact I could turn up to class with no voice (having just experienced the loss of my voice for a week and the impact that had on my teaching).  It also means that the more formal context of the lesson is not lost – it can be relistened to as many times as needed.  By spending times on activities in class (including the questions included in the lecture) students would have more time to research the answers, the English as second language students have more time to understand the content, and more time would be allowed for discussion of the content rather than the delivery of the content.  With the use of GoogleDocs those who can’t physically attend could still be ‘present’ and contributing from elsewhere if they had to.
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10 Responses

  1. I really like what you are saying about the reverse instruction Sandra. I first came across this idea in relation to the use of Khan Academy resources, where a K-12 teacher was getting her students to watch the videos at home and then doing what would normally be seen as ‘homework’ activities in class. That way the students could follow the instructions at their own pace (and as often as they needed to) and then have real f2f help when they attempted to apply what they had learnt by doing the exercises – such a simple idea! I have seen it referred to as ‘flipping the classroom’ too and there is an excellent post which links to other good resources here : http://www.learningconversations.co.uk/main/index.php/2011/03/19/flipping-the-classroom?blog=5

    I’d love to try some of these ideas out within the framework of re-designing ITC501 – what do you think?

  2. 🙂

  3. Hi Sandr,

    you wrote: “The idea of digital visitor v digital resident –> digital citizenship”

    The original post:
    TALL blog » Not ‘Natives’ & ‘Immigrants’ but ‘Visitors’ & ‘Residents’

    Read also:
    Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement

    • Thanks for the links. I particularly like the article about visitors and residents.

      My learning experience – I tend to print useful articles and websites to pdf so I can save them. Half way through this process I’m thinking ‘I should use Diigo’. This is what I did. And then I thought I should put a tag on the article – so then I figured out how to do that. And then I decided I would add it to the mccpot group – and I think I might have done that too.

      More learning has been happening – and all because of my reflection post and you replying with some extra information. An example of informal learning I think. So a big thank you for the links 🙂

  4. Sandra,
    You touched on many of the same points I also found interesting about his video. I especially like your hesitation to become a digital resident. I have many of the same reservations and I find it fascinating that so many people, perhaps, do not. I know most of my students who are Freshman see this sharing of everything personal as normal. In asking them in class the other day what a Facebook posting would have been for them pre-Facebook, say 100 years ago, they all agreed it was analogous to a diary entry. I saw their point and was not really surprised at that answer, and yet at the same time could not imagine myself ever feeling comfortable posting up what I would consider a diary entry for even my “friends” to see. Couros seems to do a very nice job of showing the generational differences in technology and I’m interested in how much that colors our comfort with it.
    Great post!

  5. Thanks for the comments on my presentation.

    If you want to dig further into the idea of Digital Visitors vs. Residents, do check out Dave White’s video on the topic: http://tallblog.conted.ox.ac.uk/index.php/2009/10/14/visitors-residents-the-video/

    Great post, and thanks for digging in deeper to each of those ideas.

    All the best in your class.

  6. […] 2: Teaching and Learning Online, reflection on […]

  7. […] 2: Teaching and Learning Online, reflection on […]

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