The Sun – not my normal reading – has carried a story about the use of iPads by gorillas by Port Lympne wild animal park (here). The project is reported to have been supported by academics from the University of Kent. The trial has been with the original iPad.
I am grateful to the Today programme for the prompt.
I watched the recording of Zaid Ali Alsagoff’s live session Sharing to Connect, Interact and Learn from Week 9 of CCK11 and during it was introduced to Schoology.com. Schoology is a social network-stroke-learning management system for education that is strongly influenced by Facebook and allows any individual or institution to set up a social network for teaching and learning. It’s free for the moment and worth a look.
Incidentally, I also attended (part of) the inaugural meeting of the ELESIG Gwella group at which lecture capture was discussed. The recording of the CCK11 MOOC Live Sessions is another exemplar of how this might work with larger groups. George Siemens and Stephen Downes use Eluminate to facilitate and record these sessions and provide both Just-In-Time and Just on Time meetings and discussions that can be viewed by anyone who has the link. The live sessions take place on Wednesdays and Fridays at 5.00 pm UK time (careful US have gone to Daylight saving time already so it might be 16.00 pm this week) and anyone can attend. Net Pedagogy is on the menu this week.
Teaching and research can sometimes be slightly uncomfortable bedfellows, especially at institutions who pride themselves on their research. Learning and teaching can be viewed rather as the poor relation – albeit one that lives in the same house, has its name on the deeds and pays most of the mortgage.
Some private teaching companies are already working their way onto campuses (admittedly working with subsets of the student body – having stumped up for the privilege) and can sometimes be seen to have better facilities than the rest of their still public counterparts. Shining examples of how well the private sector can perform.
“Social media is an important technological trend that has big implications for how researchers (and people in general) communicate and collaborate. Researchers have a huge amount to gain from engaging with social media in various aspects of their work. This guide has been produced by the International Centre for Guidance Studies, and aims to provide the information needed to make an informed decision about using social media and select from the vast range of tools that are available”
Looks quite like PC Room 1 in the Library. I agree with Chris that it would be great for small classes but how could we make it work with larger ones. Perhaps the need is for much more flexible learning spaces and not traditional large theatres? Are those designing the second campus thinking along these lines?
What about using videoed lectures delivered though the VLE with some accompanying activities? The lectures could be of excellent and engaging staff here or by using things like this MIT OCW, as referred to in a previous post. There could be a set time for the initial delivery, so that they could be some synchronous interaction though chat, tweet etc but the lecture could also be accessed later with some asynchronous activity. Following the lecture there could be a number of breakout groups run in similar lines to the video, with the students working in groups to solve problems related to the lecture and a member of staff setting up the activities and monitoring the groups. Student get the contact hours they want but with high quality delivery. No more large lecture, no more large and expensive lecture theatres, no more boring lectures and no more bored students and staff. Or maybe I’m just woefully niaive?
Perhaps I am but what if private companies think along these lines and offer degrees this way in half the time we do. They could charge more per year but less overall for a degree. How will that affect us in the new market driven climate? Shouldn’t we get in there first?