Disruptive Innovations in Learning Technologies

November 13, 2013 § Leave a comment

I’m speaking tomorrow at the Brazos Valley Chapter of ASTD.

Below are a description of the talk and my slides:

A variety of technology-enabled learning modes are changing the landscape of higher education.  How might these changes impact the training and development profession? Rebecca Frost Davis, Director of Instructional and Emerging Technology at St. Edward’s University will review developments in technology-enabled learning that are disrupting the traditional model of higher education, including the massive open online course or MOOC, blended learning, big data, and open educational resources. Participants will then explore how these disruptions might affect their approach to workforce training and development.

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Intercampus Teaching, Networked Teaching

June 7, 2013 § Leave a comment

As small colleges face limited resources that in turn limit student opportunities, we hear constant calls for collaboration.  For example, at the April 2012 conference, “The Future of the Liberal Arts College in America and Its Leadership Role in Education Around the World” Gene Tobin, a program officer of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation argued that:

Collaboration among liberal-arts colleges . . . must become commonplace to meet various challenges, including faculty development, globalization, civic engagement, and staffing less commonly taught languages. (“A President Surveys the Future of Liberal Arts”)

While it is easy to see the potential benefits of collaboration in these cases, in practice there are many challenges to those at liberal arts colleges trying to collaborate in such mission-centered areas as undergraduate instruction.

On Tuesday, June 4, three faculty members engaged in such collaboration shared their experiences in the NITLE Shared Academics™ seminar, “Intercampus Teaching, Networked Teaching.” In this post, I will share insights from the seminar in terms of the benefits, challenges, and best practices of such collaborations, as well as the questions that arose in the ensuing seminar discussion. « Read the rest of this entry »

Challenges of Blended Learning in Ancient Greek, Follow-Up

May 28, 2013 § 5 Comments

Since I posted about the challenges of finding good materials to blended learning in Introductory Ancient Greek, last Friday, I’ve found a few more resources and information to share. I’d also like to suggest some partnerships to advance this work. « Read the rest of this entry »

Challenges of Blended Learning in the Humanities: Ancient Greek

May 24, 2013 § Leave a comment

Earlier this week, I received a query about available resources for teaching Ancient Greek online that would enable a hybrid or blended approach to teaching beginning Greek.  My experience tracking down those resources is a useful demonstration of the challenges still faced by many humanities disciplines in implementing the hybrid or blended approach. In this blog post, I’m going to share my results and reflect on those challenges. « Read the rest of this entry »

Mapping Technology Use for Teaching and Learning

April 6, 2013 § 1 Comment

Earlier this afternoon I gave a presentation called “Mapping Technology Use for Teaching and Learning at Liberal Arts Colleges” at a faculty workshop of the Great Lakes Colleges Association, “Hybrid Thinking About The Role of Technology For Liberal Education.” The slides are available online:

I include references and links below. « Read the rest of this entry »

Using Smart Technology to Increase Course Offerings in World Languages

November 5, 2012 § 2 Comments

This morning I was part of a panel at the Council of Independent Colleges Institute for Chief Academic Officers along with Allen Henderson, Provost and Senior Vice President, Texas Wesleyan University and Charlie McCormick, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Schreiner University.  We were talking about the Texas Language Consortium.  Here’s the session description and the slides are below:

Low enrollment in world language courses can prevent a college from offering a breadth of languages and depth in any single language. To help overcome this challenge, five independent colleges in Texas are using high-definition videoconferences, thereby hoping to preserve the “high touch” element that is a hallmark of education in a liberal arts college. These institutions are working with the National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education (NITLE) to explore important research and implementation issues across academic, logistical, technological, financial, and curricular dimensions. CAOs from two of the participating campuses will describe their responses to these issues and how shared programming has surmounted many obstacles to maintaining strong world language departments.

Networked Collaborative Course on Feminism and Technology

September 26, 2012 § 2 Comments

In the spirit of my post about undergraduates and crowdsourcing, here is another opportunity to get undergraduates involved in a large digital project, this time with an explicitly pedagogical focus.  The innovative FemTechNet project seeks to use technology to enable a networked conversation among, students, faculty, scholars, artists and others about the intersections of feminism and technology. By developing a distributed online collaborative course–Feminist Dialogues on Technology–which will be offered in Fall 2013, project leaders will cross global and disciplinary boundaries to create this dialogue. Please share this opportunity with any on your campus or beyond who might be interested.

This academic year (2012-2013), an international network of scholars and artists activated by Alexandra Juhasz (Professor Media Studies, Pitzer College) and Anne Balsamo (Dean of the School of Media Studies, at the New School for Public Engagement in New York) are working together to design and develop the course. I believe that this project presents an important opportunity to connect students at liberal arts colleges into a larger learning network, as we prepare them to be citizens in a globally networked world.

Campuses may join the course in a variety of ways:

  • faculty may offer an associated course on their home campus;
  • students can take the course as an independent study with local faculty members mentoring them; or
  • anyone who is interested may join as informal learners.

Currently, network members are building the course by submitting and evaluating “Boundary Objects that Learn”—the course’s basic pedagogic instruments.

To help members of the NITLE network learn more about this project, and the alternative model it presents for how liberal arts colleges might effectively counter the current drive to massive online courses (like MOOCs), NITLE will be offering a free online seminar for NITLE network members on Thursday, October 4, 4-5 pm EDT. Seminar participants will join project leaders, Alexandra Juhasz and Anne Balsamo to learn about and discuss this project. Find out more about the seminar and register online: http://www.nitle.org/live/events/144-femtechnet-the-first-docc-a-feminist-mooc For those who are not NITLE network members, please contact Juhasz or Balsamo directly or go to the FemBot Collective to find out how to get involved.

I’ve got another post brewing on the implications of this project in terms of MOOCs, academic collaboration between campuses, etc., but wanted to get this opportunity out there now.

Course Design for Blended Learning

September 14, 2012 § Leave a comment

I’m leading a webinar today for the Associated Colleges of the South (ACS) on Course Design for Blended Learning. The ACS currently offers grants to fund blended learning projects in their consortium of liberal arts colleges. Here’s the description of the webinar:

Blended learning offers many opportunities for liberal arts colleges to enhance the curriculum, but how can faculty maintain the essential values of liberal education in an educational context combining online and face-to-face interaction? This seminar will examine successful methods and processes for blended learning course design. Examples will include designing online courses from liberal arts values, flipping the classroom, and academic collaboration between campuses. Interactive exercises for course design will help participants leave with a process and next steps for developing blended learning experiences in their own courses. The slides are available here:

http://www.slideshare.net/rebeccadavis/course-design-for-blended-learning

Previous presentations on this topic included an Inside Higher Ed Audio Conference in March 2011 and a webinar for the Associated Colleges of the South in March 2012.

Liberal Arts Online: An ACS Blended Learning Webinar

March 9, 2012 § 1 Comment

On March 9, 2012, I led a webinar for the Associated  Colleges of the South‘s (ACS) Blended Learning Initiative.  I include the description and slides below:

Improving technology, changing students, challenging finances, and alternative credentialing sources have all combined to create an online learning boom in higher education. For liberal arts colleges, online learning promises to enhance the curriculum by moving some tasks online to allow for more active learning face-to-face, increasing student time on task, connecting study abroad or internship students back to campus, adding curricular resources, or expanding access to liberal education. Whatever the motivation for considering online learning, liberal arts colleges are forging new ground in bringing the liberal arts educational model–highly interactive, close work between students and faculty–into an online context. This seminar will explore a variety of models for using technology to fulfill the essential learning outcomes of liberal education and suggest ways faculty might enhance their courses with online teaching.

Liberal Arts Online

March 17, 2011 § 1 Comment

On March 17, 2011 I led an Inside Higher Ed Audio Conference, “The Liberal Arts Online”. Slides are available via slideshare.

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