May 21, 2010

Lecture Tools Software for Student Engagement

U. of Michigan Professor Designs Software for Student Engagement
By Mary Helen Miller
May 21, 2010

This article describes a web-based software that combines personal-response technology with other kinds of interactive tools that students can use on their laptops in classrooms. Lecture Tools, created by Perry Samson, a professor atmospheric science at the University of Michigan, lets students use their computers during classes to pose anonymous questions, mark up lecture slides, and answer questions posed by the instructor in real time.

Most interesting is this study:

In a study that Mr. Samson based on a survey of about 200 students he taught, he found that about half said that having a laptop in class increased the amount of time they spent on activities unrelated to the lecture. Still, 78 percent said that laptops with the interactive technology made them more engaged in class overall. The study was published in this month's edition of Computers & Education.

Lecture Tools is currently free to download and use.

May 19, 2010

Studio Classroom: Designing Collaborative Learning Spaces

Campus Technology
May 19, 2010

What does the "classroom of the future" look like? In contrast to the traditional lecture-oriented room, this increasingly popular kind of space, known as a "studio classroom," emphasizes group learning and collaboration. But designers might not always get it right. AV expert Michael Leiboff shares 14 distinct characteristics of a successful studio classroom design.

February 4, 2010

More resources for using Twitter in the classroom

Tomorrow's Professor Msg.#984 Learning in 140 - Character Bites

Once widely dismissed as an instrument of vanity, Twitter is now showing up in serious places. Its citizen-journalistic role after last June's Iranian election was much celebrated; in May, a NASA astronaut became the first to tweet from space ("From orbit: Launch was awesome!!"). Bit by bit, Twitter is finding a role in education.

November 12, 2009

Article: 'But I Don't Want to Teach My Students How to Use Technology'

From Campus Technology
By Trent Batson
October 21, 2009

Not all faculty are actively engaged in using technology in their classrooms. For some, technical support or basic technology resources on their campuses may be lacking. But still others may be clinging to the idea that nothing has changed...

Article: Course Requirement: Friend Your Professor on Facebook

From The Chronicle of Higher Education
November 12, 2009

Some professors don't let students see their Facebook pages. Peter Juvinall insists students "friend" him.

The Illinois State University instructor decided the best way to connect with a bunch of freshman business students in a short 8 a.m. class was to conduct much of the course where they are anyway—on Facebook.

So, as he explained during last week’s Educause conference and in a subsequent interview, he uses Facebook as a course-management system by instructing students to “friend” his personal page on the first day of class.

Report: Survey of Learning Space Design in Higher Education from Herman Miller (2009)

From Herman Miller's Education Solutions E-newsletter
November 2009
Research Confirms Trend to Learning-Centered Spaces

The Society for College and University Planning (SCUP) and Herman Miller, have recently partnered on a survey to add data to our understanding of just how pervasive the trend toward learning-centered space design is on campuses today. Critics of the traditional approach to learning spaces have long contended that the regimented arrangements in our educational institutions are meant for a different age than the one in which our current students must function. It's no surprise that changes in the design of learning spaces suggested by this research are being seen on more and more campuses.

Report: What Learning Will Be Like in 2015 from Herman Miller

From Herman Miller's Education Solutions E-newsletter
November 2009
New Interpretation of What Learning Will Be Like in 2015

Recently, Herman Miller convened a panel of experts to re-examine 12 predictions made in 2005 about learning in the year 2015. The latest panel agreed that many of the trends identified in 2005 had already become mainstream realities. What was required was a more nuanced and contemporary interpretation to recognize how the current financial environment had affected the original discussions. That interpretation is outlined in a new research summary entitled "The Outlook for Learning: Views on the Future."

October 22, 2009

Article: iPhone The Body Electric > Apps Visualize Human Anatomy (10/8/09)

University of Utah researchers created new iPhone programs - known as applications or "apps" - to help scientists, students, doctors and patients study the human body, evaluate medical problems and analyze other three-dimensional images.

August 28, 2009

Inside Higher Ed's Blog U: Technology and Learning

This blog, Technology and Learning: A space for conversation and debate about learning and technology, posted on the Inside Higher Ed has some interesting thoughts and useful ideas.

Check out this posting in particular and two lessons learned:

The first thing learned from this experience was that when having classes create media projects (as opposed to traditional papers) it is necessary to set very hard limits on the numbers of these projects.

The second lesson I learned was that in introducing new teaching methods it is necessary to enforce limits on students technological use, as they will gravitate to the more robust and time intensive tools if you let them.

Article: The New Literacy

Clive Thompson on the New Literacy
Wired Magazine
August 24, 2009

A brief article that includes an interview with Professor Andrea Lunsford and a compelling conclusion:

We think of writing as either good or bad. What today's young people know is that knowing who you're writing for and why you're writing might be the most crucial factor of all.