Thursday, December 15, 2011

How Collaborative Learning is Shaping the Future of Education

Many in higher education agree that while some of the traditions hold value worth preserving, many of the paradigms are outdated and no longer effective. I am, myself, a strong advocate of replacing the COMPETITIVE models ingrained in education to COLLABORATIVE ones, but to do so we must begin on very basic and grassroots levels.

Does a massive redesign of higher education (or all education, for that matter) begin with administration? With faculty? With students? Who is responsible for taking the risks and giving new ideas a chance? Well, basically we ALL are responsible to some degree, but it's worth noting that a great deal can happen in the design of our coursework. Once we adapt and adopt the technological strategies to support our efforts, learners are often able to balance the load and take on increasingly active roles in the learning process.

This article makes some excellent points---I especially loved this quote:
“Social” probably isn’t the right word to picture a successful digitally-integrated education, as social media isn’t the key component. Instead, think “collaborative.” Historically, the academic model has focused on teaching rather than learning.
How can we change our focus from teaching to learning? What tools are you using to increase the role of the student in both his/her OWN learning, as well as in the learning of their peers? Is your course teaching real world skills in problem-solving and collaboration?

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

9 Tools for Using Wikipedia in the Classroom

There are lots of varying opinions about Wikipedia, but most who really know the Web site really love it. There are many misconceptions about Wikipedia and how its information is gathered and verified---for anyone who has not yet viewed this TED talk by Wikpedia founder Jimmy Wales, I HIGHLY recommend you do so before forming your opinion about Wikipedia's value as a research tool.

That said, here are 9 Tools for Using Wikipedia in the Classroom.

More to come on this hot topic!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

ScribLink meets Screencast-o-Matic!!! (You saw it here!)

No downloads, and both the white board software and video capture software ... FREE! See the "Cool Tools" section on this page for links!