Last October, I gave an Ignite talk at the Digital Media and Learning Conference called “Epic Composition.” Below, I offer a more extended look at the design and structures of my “jumbo” first-year writing course at California State University, Chico. Walking into our “jumbo” first-year writing course as an outsider can be a bit intimidating. The room is packed with people: 90 students, nine writing mentors, and the instructor. Students sit in new desks: rolling chairs with a bottom “saucer” for storing backpacks, a moving tray designed for a laptop. Students have nicknamed the chairs “George
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Since the announcement of Apple’s iPad, reactions to the device have been extremely polarized. While some people have been highly critical of the device, others have reacted positively. Still others have reacted first negatively then positively or, more disorientingly, both at the same time. A striking similarity of many of the most-cited negative reviews of the iPad is that they appeared before the reviewers ever had a chance to interact with the device. For both positive and negative reviewers, this approach made it much easier to praise or critique the iPad as an idea, rather than
Editor’s note: Global Kids each month points us to their current favorite resources. Please take a moment and share some of yours, too, in the comments section. Also, we always value knowing what the knowledge-hungry leaders at GK are reading, watching and listening to, but in the spirit of full disclosure want to acknowledge (and appreciate) that two items in this month’s list involve our research director, Mimi Ito, and our supporter, the MacArthur Foundation. Topping this month’s list: “Are Virtual Worlds Over?” a provocative blog post by digital games guru Raph Koster, who provides a
Often the emphasis in Digital Media and Learning is on K-12 education, and so social computing practices in higher education frequently receive less attention from researchers. A recently released five-year Mellon Foundation study on “Assessing the Future Landscape of Scholarly Communication,” analyzed data from 160 interviewees in seven academic fields (and included data from an additional five disciplines from the research planning phase). The work spanned 45, mostly elite, research institutions, and ultimately concluded that not much has changed in faculty attitudes about where, and in what media, they publish scholarly articles and books, despite the
I recently had occasion to talk on the phone with someone whose posts on education and social media I follow with interest on Twitter. ToughLoveforX (his Twitter name) is a retired printer whose scan of the educational horizon in the digital age is as eagle-eyed as that of anyone I know. I follow him on Twitter because I know that, if I click through to one of the url’s he posts, I’m bound to find something good. When I asked him what he would do, if he could make one monumental change that would have an
“From the standpoint of the child, the great waste in the school comes from his inability to utilize the experiences he gets outside the school in any complete and free way within the school itself; while, on the other hand, he is unable to apply in daily life what he is learning at school. That is the isolation of the school – its isolation from life. When the child gets into the schoolroom he has to put out of his mind a large part of the ideas, interests, and activities that predominate in his home and
Raquel Recuero is a professor of linguistics and communication in Brazil, and a researcher in social media and Internet culture in South America. The content of this post is based on her recent research about Facebook’s role-playing games. Social networking games are typically regarded as “casual” in the sense that they don’t require players to become so addicted to them, or to invest a lot of time in order to be enjoyed. Game mechanisms are simpler, allowing users, in many cases, just to point-and-click and the rules aren’t complex. Thus, one would doubt that RPGs (role
It’s easy to see new Internet phenomena and panic, especially when the technology in question opens up a portal to all of the weird parts of the Internet. This is precisely what is happening around ChatRoulette, a new peer-to-peer webcam-based video chat site. Although the site was built by a 17-year-old Russian high school student to connect with other teens, nearly every adult who has visited the site runs screaming that this is a terrible space for young people. In some senses, they’re right. But the more that they panic and talk about how bad this
Hidden in the tweetstream from the Digital Media and Learning Conference 2010 are hundreds of provocative insights, comments, and observations, and we couldn’t help but mine the archive for another round. The full stream can be found here: #dml2010. The tweets we’ve collected below contain ideas, questions, and thoughts that can be readily absorbed by both those who attended the conference and those who did not – as well as recommended resources and links. Cast of Characters (in order of tweets that reference them):Katie Salen (presenter) Ernest Morrell (panelist) Henry Jenkins (conference chair) Benjamin Stokes (panelist)Lev
Teaching and education in America has been a very hot subject in the news. In recent days, there have been lengthy pieces on “building a better teacher,” the ripple effects of a Rhode Island school board’s decision to fire the entire faculty of a poorly performing school and President Obama’s remarks, and the results of a large survey of teachers. So, I wanted to bring attention to a new effort coming out of the office of our friend, Jim Shelton, at the U.S. Department of Education. It’s a new web 2.0 site on Ed.gov called The
In a recent New Yorker piece on cookbooks, Adam Gopnik observes that “the space between learning the facts about how something is done and learning how to do it always turns out to be large, at times immense.” Although Gopnik is explicitly referring to cooking, this statement could be equally applied to most forms of learning since the nineteenth century. As Cathy Davidson points out, the history of modern education has been that of the constant refinement of how we rank and classify individuals and their relative worth. Cathy notes that this history is intimately bound up
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This collaborative blog and curated collection of free and open resources is produced by the Digital Media & Learning Research Hub, which is dedicated to analyzing and interpreting the impact of the Internet and digital media on education, civic engagement, and youth.