These are my Jumptags for September 8th

  • The Five Design Elements Every Website Needs – Discover the five design elements that every well-built website needs. Includes tips and tricks for content and navigation design.
  • How To Jump Start The Website Design Process – Discover a simple four-step process that can help any web designer squeeze inspiration out of a competitor's website design.
  • Project2Manage – Free Project Management – Project2Manage is an Online project management system that allows you to stay up-to-date, on task and connected with your team. We’ve taken the hard work of staying organized and simplified it for you.
  • 15 Essential Web Tools for Students – It's time to head back to school and there are a number of web-based and social tools to help you get through the school year. Here are 15 essential ones.
  • Microsoft Launches Tools For Teachers – Microsoft's Education Labs launched a new project this afternoon and it's better on trees and the environment. The group just announced a new Math Worksheet Generator where teachers …
  • Kineo – Tip 27: Tear down the visual wallpaper – It is time to tear down the e-learning wallpaper and take heed of some top tips on using graphics for instructional use.
  • 30 Amazing Alphabet Recreations | Tutorial9 – The Alphabet dates back to the Egyptian era and forms the basis of our language, through the years people have experimented and created a wealth of interesting and unique alphabets. This is a collection of some of the best examples.
  • 3 Successful Small Businesses on Social Media – To help you see how social media can work no matter how big or small your business, I’ve found some great case studies of small businesses that get it and are seeing results!

These are my Jumptags for July 22nd

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...
Image via CrunchBase

Over at The Edublogger, Sue Waters offers up a quick tutorial (with screenshots) on how to import your blog posts into your Facebook account.  With a comment I made to Sue, she also discovered it was possible to use Yahoo Pipes and splice multiple RSS feeds together and import that into your Facebook account as well.  Finally, because Facebook is accepting an RSS feed, it seems possible to publish/re-publish just about any RSS feed, including your Delicious bookmarks, a CNN feed or the feed from your Google Calendar.

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Clif Mims and I have a new book chapter that will be published in the next couple of weeks or so. It’s taken over a year for this to get to press, so I’m happy for it to finally get out. Web 2.0 in teacher education: Characteristics, implications and limitations will be published by Information Age Publishing in the book Wired for learning: An educators guide to Web 2.0. The book was edited by Terry Kidd and Irene Chen.

You can order a copy of the book directly from the publisher at http://www.infoagepub.com/index.php?id=9&p=p49a46fbae54e1. Information Age Publishing also a deal going on right now to celebrate their 10th anniversary. If you order 10 books, you can get them for $10 a piece. (Yes, you have to order 10 books.)

Here’s the abstract for the chapter:

Like the variety of Web 2.0 applications, theories of learning and instructional models are also primarily content independent. So it is left up to the teacher educator to match learner characteristics, content, pedagogy and technologies. This chapter will concentrate on the use of Web 2.0 technologies in contemporary constructivist and cognitivist learning environments. We will present the characteristics of Web 2.0 tools to support teaching and learning, including low threshold applications, a variety of tools and models, as well as access to tools and knowledge. Finally, we will identify the limitations and challenges that exist with using these tools, such as immature applications, longevity of applications, number of applications, unconsolidated services and security and ethics.

Jongpil Cheon

Jongpil Cheon

by Jongpil Cheon

The faculty members in instructional technology program were invited to visit some classrooms by a technology support team of a school district. All the classes we visited in two elementary schools, one middle school and one high school were using a Smartboard and clickers (classroom response system). In the discussion session, the main request from the technology support team was that these tools should be in pre-service teacher curriculum. I understand that these tools become more popular and we need to teach how to use the tools. However, all classroom activities were still teacher-centered except that the students chose their answers with clickers or pointed at something on the screen in front of the class. I felt there was a gap between real classroom settings and research findings. I started thinking about how to narrow the gap in a practical way. There should be something we could provide for teachers rather than journal article. That’s my initial thought.

Web 2.0 has been a big word. As the owner of this blog stated, Web 2.0 tools have three big features: a) easy to learn, b) variety of tools, and c) low cost and networked community. There are many websites introducing Web 2.0 tools such as http://www.go2web20.net. In addition, some sites focus on classroom tools such as http://www.classroom20.com. However, there are a few websites that introduce currently available technology tools for K-12 classrooms with useful categories and application samples. Therefore, I opened a wiki space (http://tools4classroom.wetpaint.com) to collect any available tools including hardware and software as well as website using Web 2.0 technology. I asked my students to add a tool they know. It is the beginning of my own project. The main goal is creating a resource to support effective Web 2.0 technology integration that would be the second edition of teacher technology handbook (http://teacherhandbook.memphis.edu). I am seeking ways of categorizing various tools based on a teacher’s point of view. Furthermore, an evaluation system such as a benchmarking system can be implemented with another Web 2.0 tool.

Screen capture of technology 4 classrooms wiki

http://tools4classroom.wetpaint.com/

If you have time, please add a tool to the wiki space, and let me know any useful website about Web 2.0 technology integration to classroom. You are more than welcome to suggest a categorizing method as a comment.

(Last, congratulations on launching a blog!  I hope this blog will be a resource and a communication point in the instructional technology field.)

Guest blogger:  Dr. Jongpil Cheon is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Psychology and Leadership in the Instructional Technology program at Texas Tech University.  He taught elementary schools in Incheon, Korea, and has served as an instructor at the Incheon Education and Science Research Institute, Incheon, Korea. Dr. Cheon has received numerous honors, such as being named outstanding doctoral student at the University of Memphis, and was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society. He has contributed to several instructional technology books and has many presentations and publications in the fields of adaptive learning system, online instruction and interface design. He has also served as a system manager in Advanced Instructional Multimedia Lab at the University of Memphis, and developed numerous websites, instructional technology integration manuals, and Web-based courses.

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Yuri Quintana

Yuri Quintana

Increasingly social networks are being used in business, education and by non-profit groups. Which social networks do you use? Which one is your favorite? Why is it your favorite? How should educators be using these networks? How can these networks be used in the classroom? What kinds of student projects could be done for course credit?  Here’s a list of some popular and some niche networks.  Add your thoughts in the comments below.

Professional Social Networks
http://www.linkedin.com/ <http://www.linkedin.com/>
http://www.xing.com/ <http://www.xing.com/>
http://www.talkbiznow.com/ <http://www.talkbiznow.com/>
http://www.plaxo.com <http://www.plaxo.com>

Wireless Social networks
http://www.whrrl.com <http://www.whrrl.com>
http://www.snaptell.com <http://www.snaptell.com>
http://trutap.com <http://trutap.com>
http://taptu.com <http://taptu.com>

Social Networks for MDs
http://www.sermo.com
http://www.socialmd.com
http://doc2doc.bmj.com

Networks for Scientists
http://labroots.com
http://sciweavers.org
http://scientistsolutions.com
http://network.nature.com/

Create  Your Own Social Networks
http://www.ning.com
http://www.crowdvine.com

Self-Publishing and User Contributed Content
http://lulu.com
http://beta.yudu.com
http://scribd.com
http://www.ireport.com
http://www.wikipedia.org

Video Publishing
http://www.youtube.com
http://video.google.com

Guest blogger: At St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Yuri Quintana has led the development of several international online projects, including www.Cure4Kids.org, an online pediatric cancer education Web site used by thousands of health professionals in 164 countries; Pond4Kids, an online system used for international pediatric cancer protocol research; and Consult4Kids, a Web-based system used by health professionals for clinical consultations. Prior to coming to St. Jude, Quintana was a principal investigator in the Canadian HealNet Research Network focusing on consumer health informatics; while there, he designed breast cancer decision support systems for the Canadian Cancer Society. Formerly a faculty member at the University of Western Ontario, Quintana also served as director of the New Media Research Lab. He has held high-tech positions at IBM Canada Limited, Watcom Inc., WATFAC, and the University of Waterloo. The chair of four international conferences on medical informatics, Quintana earned master’s and doctoral degrees in systems design engineering and an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering and computer science, all from the University of Waterloo. Quintana is currently focused on the development of innovative Internet technologies that empower communities of health care professionals and consumers to communicate, learn and collaborate on a worldwide basis.

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Paul Ayers

Paul Ayers

by Paul Ayers

Let’s consider for a moment a formal definition put forth by Alan J. Cann for Personal Learning Environments (PLEs).  A PLE is:

a system that helps learners take control of and manage their own learning. This includes providing support for learners to set their own learning goals, manage their learning, manage both content and process, and communicate with others in the process of learning.

Graham Attwell also makes a strong case for PLEs in his article in his article “Personal Learning Environments – the future of eLearning?

Both Cann and  Attwell caused me to begin reflecting on the tools and activities I use to learn and demonstrate my learning, from working within my university’s LMS to using Web 2.0 tools like Wikipedia and Flickr to an old-fashioned Google search. It occurred to me everything I use to assist me daily with formal and informal learning pretty much meets the definition set above. But there also seems to be a gap. The ease and tools with which to share my learning are not as readily apparent.
Here is my take on it. We are close, but not there. We are more capable than ever of finding information and acquiring new knowledge, but how are we doing with the “reflecting on it and doing something with it” part? Do most learners really want to control their learning environment and to demonstrate knowledge acquisition to the degree a PLE might offer?

Ok…I’ll admit it…I am thrilled by the idea of a designed PLE to support learners, but I am also convinced it may not be the end-all-be-all solution to learning ownership. In an increasingly knowledge-driven society, we have to be aware of the probability that some learners aren’t as interested in showing what they know, but just knowing. The PLE of the future must make reflection upon and demonstration of knowledge as easy as acquisition. Otherwise, we may only be talking about Google 2.0.

Guest blogger: Paul Ayers holds a Master’s of Business Administration in Management and is a currently a doctoral student in the University of Memphis’ Department of Instruction and Curriculum Leadership. His research interests include e-learning applications higher education settings, hybrid learning environments, and instructional design. Paul currently works with International Paper as a contract instructional designer, where he is developing e-learning solutions with subject matter experts in the Environment, Health and Safety division. In his spare time, Paul enjoys spending time with his family and home renovation.

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Charles B. Hodges

Charles B. Hodges

by Charles B. Hodges

I work in an environment where thousands of learners access web-based learning materials daily. Web-based learning is a major topic of research and discussion in the professional organizations to which I belong. I teach graduate-level instructional design courses, and I will soon be involved with undergraduate-level technology integration courses. Exploring the endless stream of new Web 2.0 tools that emerge and imagining (or reading in my friends’ blogs) how these might be used to facilitate learning is something I enjoy. Recently, I have found myself considering ethical issues surrounding all of these interests:

When designing instruction, how much attention should be given to making sure that instruction is accessible to all learners?

By accessible here I mean accessibility in terms of the Americans with Disabilities Act. In conversations with colleagues on this topic I have heard comments like: “If federal money is not involved, you don’t have to worry about accessibility.”, “Why worry about something that affects such a small number of people?”, “We’ll worry about accessibility when someone complains.”

These comments were both shocking and depressing to me at the same time. Shouldn’t we do the right thing for our learners, all of them? I often describe an instructional designer as being an advocate for the learners. I understand the difficulty involved with making accessible web-based materials. A great deal of my work has involved mathematics and the specialized symbols necessary for communicating mathematics brings the difficulty to the forefront quickly. I also understand the issues of cost during development in both time and money. However, for those that have commented to me about small numbers of people (which I am not sure I buy, by the way), I have tried to champion the case of accessibility makes for better usability for ALL. Who wouldn’t, for example, like to be able to search the text of a podcast for all the instances of a particular word or phrase?

For now I have decided to take a middle road — demonstrating emerging technologies and discussing clever and interesting uses of them for education, while at the same time making it clear that there are real issues regarding accessibility for many new web-based tools and services. Is this the right thing to do? I am starting to see eyes roll when I bring up accessibility and I think that is progress. My interpretation of the rolling eyes is “here we go again.” They must be starting to remember

Guest blogger: Chuck Hodges has worked in higher education for nearly 17 years, all in math departments. He has earned degrees in Mathematics (B.S., M.S.) and Instructional Design and Technology (Ph.D. from Virginia Tech). Currently, he wears many hats in his role as manager of the Virginia Tech Math Emporium: facilities manager, researcher, logistics expert, stand-up trainer, and learner advocate. He will soon be surrendering all of those hats to move south and be an Assistant Professor of Instructional Technology at Georgia Southern University.

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Valentine's Day StudyHappy Valentine’s Day and welcome to the inaugural post of my new web site and blog, ViralNotebook.com. I hope you’ll find my blog interesting, provocative, funny and informative. I’m going to be considering design broadly, including instructional design, message design, interface design and graphic design. I’ll also be looking toward instructional development and learning technologies, such as e-learning, Web 2.0 and technology integration.

When I off-handedly mentioned mentioned the name of my new site to a group of doc students, one student (David S.) asked me what the name meant. So, I thought I would share a little bit about the name like I did for him. Certainly, a notebook is a catch-all: a container for unfinished and refined thoughts, a bound collection of related and dissimilar writings and a place for chicken scratch that hasn’t been fleshed out or found a home. Viral (rhymes with spiral) connotes the infectious nature and methods that so many good ideas are spread from one individual to another. So, hopefully, this site will become a venue for sharing. I hope you’ll help with that, too. And as the title suggests, “Show some love.” Comment and share. I welcome both.

As part of the launch for my site, I invited a slew of friends and colleagues from around the country to offer up their thoughts on topics they are currently pondering. I am pleased and honored to announce that over the next weeks, their posts will celebrate the launch of this site. Here’s the prestigious list:

  • Paul Ayers, International Paper
  • Elizabeth Boling, Indiana University
  • Rob Branch, University of Georgia
  • Ward Cates, Lehigh University
  • Jongpil Cheon, Texas Tech University
  • Anna Clifford, Union University
  • Chuck Hodges, Virginia Tech University
  • Corey Johnson, FedEx
  • David Lindenberg, Lebonheur Methodist Healthcare
  • Yuri Quintana, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
  • Lynn Schrum, George Mason University
  • Sharon Smaldino, Northern Illinois University

Can you say, “Wow!”? This is an awesome list of experts, researchers and practitioners. I hope their thoughts will prompt you to comment on their posts, as well as either subscribe to the RSS feed or submit your name in the form on the right sidebar to receive email updates.