One conference down, 2 to go! The drive from Monterey to San Francisco along the coast on US Rt 1 is amazing! It is not a long drive. We took our time. explored. stopped. took pictures. it was great. Getting to the conference hotel was easy, everything went smoothly. I love San Francisco. I was really looking forward to doing my presentation at the Sloan-C emerging technologies conference, June 17-19, 2009, and to the conference itself. Because it is a Sloan event, i knew i will see a lot of people i know. Because it is a new conference, i anticipated that i would meet a lot of people i don’t know. I have been eager to plug into some new communities, and the symposium did not disappoint. One of the very cool things they did was to partner the symposium with a MoodleMoot. A very smart business decision in this economic climate and a very cool way to infuse new blood/energy/enthusiasm into an organization. This is only the second year of the #sloancsym and when i heard they went from 200 participants last year (i did not attend) to over 600 this year, i was astounded and very glad for the organization. I was also thrilled that my presentation “twitterpated with twitter and other web 2.0 technologies for instructional purposes” was selected as the “best in track” session for the Pedagogy and New Learning Environments track. This was one of the motivations i had to rename, revise, and redesign my presentation in a new zooming prezentation tool called prezi that i have been playing with for sometime. So, i delivered a session-length version of my teaching outside the “box” presentation, which i had just delivered as a 3.5 hour workshop to a small audience at the NMC summer conference, in Monterey. The presentation was recorded. Here is the link complete with screen shots – a very high quality video recording – nicely done! I LOVED doing the presentation. There were at least 150 people in the room, maybe more. it was packed! I love an audience and i love sharing and talking about my passion: teaching and learning online. It was also nice to see several friends in the audience including Karen Vignare in the front row, and Burks Oakley. My friend Phil Ice was my facilitator. It was wonderful!
Preconference Workshop Notes
I wanted to do a preconference workshop and couldn’t decide which. In the end, I opted for the Learning How to Use Google Apps workshop (which i was way interested in) instead of the Moodle 1.9 gradebook workshop (which i way needed). The workshop facilitated by Susan Cline, and Matt Albert from PressPlaySolutions turned out to be a great choice for a good overview of google apps. my takeaways from the workshop:
Google Apps in plain English
These are some of the symposium sessions i attended:
Will web 3.0 make us change the way we educate? a call for a new learning management program by Matt Crosslin and Harriet Watkins, University of Texas at Arlington.
my takeaways from this session:
Implementing an Online Learning Model in a Social Media World by Thomas Glover and Stacey Ludwig from WGU and Sarah Robbins.
- Unfortunately Intellagirl wuz not there : ( but i got a good overview of WGU and their use of social media from Stacey.
- Highlight was seeing an @micala tweet in my steam and realizing she was in the room with me and finding her actually sitting in my row !
- @hollyrae was also in the room, but did not actually meet her f2f till later.
Into the Third Dimension with SLOODLE by Jeremy Kemp, from San José State University I wanted to see Jeremy and hear what was going on with SLOODLE. He spoke of SLOODLE providing opportunities for engagement, immersion, and scaffolded learning. He showed cool moodle blocks in SL that you can walk around in in secondlife and interact with. He also showed how it interacted in the same way with ANGEL. Still not sure i understand how it all works. VERY COOL! my takeaways from the session:
Still not sure i understand how it all works. But it was VERY COOL!
Using the COI framework to Assess the Efficacy of New Technologies by Phil Ice and Jason Dom from the American Public University System. I was really looking forward to meeting Phil Ice for the first time in person, though we have known each other for a long time. We may have met before, not sure. His presentation was fantastic! It was nice to hear about the COI research that Peter is contributing SLN data to from someone else and to learn about Phil’s particular contribution and findings/results with audio feedback. I immediately started using more audio/video in my live summer course. : ) You must view this slide show now! This was a fantastic presentation with lots stuff information.
Social Networking to Build Community with Ning by Michelle Macfarlane from Sierra College. my takeaways from the session:
“Higher Education Meets the S Curve” – expert plenary panel
Julie Clow, Ph.D. – Learning Technologies Manager, Google S
tewart Mader – founder of Future Changes, a specialist consultancy that teaches people at Fortune 500 companies, universities, non-profits, and small businesses how to improve productivity using wikis (i.e., Confluence) http://futurechanges.org/
Adrian Wilson – Director of Educational Outreach and Chair of the Microsoft Higher Ed Consortium, chair of the Microsoft Higher Ed Consortium
Guess which two were the coolest?
Virtual Classrooms by John Schuman – education solutions architect, adobe systems. According to John, cloud computing isstyle of computing in which dynamically scalable & often virtualized resource are provided as a service on the net. Things are moving to the clouds, and devices are shrinking as a result. Enter software as a service. . . my takeaways from this session:
Beyond Google: easy to use innovative resource and alternative search engines you can use today by Ray Schroeder, university of illinois at Springfield and Maureen Yoder from Lesley University. Watch this pesentation now! it was fantastic!! i learned stuff i did not know! My takeaways from this session:
Fostering New Learning Communities, Nurturing Online Learning Ecosystems, by Holly Rae Bemis-Schurtz and Susan Bussmann, NMSU/RETA I had no internet access @hollyrae ‘s prezo, but it was fantastic! my takeaway from this session:
Institutional and system barriers to improving student success through technology – is there any reason for hope? by Josh Jarret, senior program officer, special initiatives, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. my notes from this session: Began by listening to some shameful stats on how we are failing to educate low-income and students of color. He challenges us to stop what we are doing, be outraged and do something different becuase it is NOT working! He asks how do we address the challenge of completion? what are the solutions? – socialnetworks, limited choice, linked to real-world goal. Compresed classroom time and terms, soft skills development, and career matching, integrated supports and active case management. Blended learning is effective for nontraditional students, social networks, proam networks, adaptive software, intuitive media. Use of simulation roleplay, new assessments. Mentioned excelsior, wgu, kaplan, ria slado… wow! iron triangle: cost, quality, and access – affect one has negative impact on one of the others… according to college presidents. nothing can change if this is true. are we trapped in this iron triangle? Innovation that challenges the status quo dies. so what are the barriers to innovation? He proposes a revolution from within – says we are the soldiers – that evolution will take too long – love it : )
RT @m2sE: the revolution won’t be televised, it’s tweeted : )
This was a fantastically provocative session by a smart articulate man. Every one should watch it now!
Roughly half of students who attempt postsecondary fail to complete a degree or credential – and that number is even higher for low-income students and students of color. Learning technologies are creating dynamic, engaging, and personalized educational experiences with proven effectiveness – yet they rarely go to scale. This conversation will attempt to identify the combination of systemic factors that have consistently resisted transforming learning experiences for students to increase their success – and to ask what if anything can we do to change this reality?
highlights of the symposium for me were:
- Moodle not being down during my presentation. MoodleRooms was down for the morning and was thrilled that it came back up in time for my presentation!! that was quite a scare.
- Meeting @jjjohnson01, who was in my Sloan-C workshop several years ago! I LOVED meeting him.
- Meeting @rrusso and @hollyrae – I had sent out a tweet plea for someone to help me with my MOODLE gradebook (which was a mess after an unexpected upgrade) and two people i had never met that were at the conference tweeted back offering to help. One of them being the guy that led the gradebook preconf workshop! We connected and he helped me figure out how to have moodle add the scores of my discussion ratings. I can’t believe it works! I had been adding it all up manually taking hours and hours and hours. I am so greatful for their help.
- Saw several ESC friends – Evelyn Ting and Nicola Martinez. Jon Rubin from Purchase was also there.
- felt like @clarkshahnelson was with me at the conference. He also offered to help me with my gradebook and was participating virtually and twittering the session he viewed remotely. very cool.
- learning about http://moodleshare.com/
- I met a guy at lunch from New Zealand and asked if he new Terry Neale… AND HE DID!!
- I found out later that Claudia Linden was there – i did not see her. I would have loved to talk with her. I saw Gary Miller briefly and wish i had had time to catch up with him more.
- sloan-c symposium presentation voicethreads are pretty cool: http://voicethread.com/#u93102
- an interesting way to view stuff: http://spezify.com/#/sloancsym
Personal highlights were my daughter and brother being with me. We visited the aquarium, went to the Muir woods, had dinner in Sausalito, had a ferry ride across the bay and numerous trolley rides, toured SF in a horse-drawn carriage, had dinners at the Hard Rock Café and the Rain Forest Café – had a wonderful time. The only thing i did not like about this conference was the hotel – no pool, meeting rooms were hot, stuffy, small, and uncomfortable with laptops, not to mention lack of power to plugin. There was no wireless access in some of the meeting rooms, there were fake movable walls between session rooms – and you could hear everything in the other rooms – distracting, plus a number of other small irritations that added up.
Everything else about it was fantastic!