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As editor of The Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-based Learning, I wanted to give a quick update as to where folks are finding value.  In July 2013, IJPBL had 6349 full-text downloads.  The most popular papers were:

IJPBL is an open access journal focusing on inquiry methods, including problem-based learning, project-based learning, case-based learning, anchored instruction, and inquiry.  Our journal continues to be rigorous with an acceptance rate between 6 t0 16%.

As a reminder, this past spring we began a new section in IJPBL to highlight the implementations of inquiry by individuals, teachers and faculty members, schools, departments, and districts.  These “Voices from the Field” articles focus on implementation, are highly contextualized, and include reflections and lessons learned.  You can see the call for manuscripts at http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/ijpbl/vol7/iss1/12/.

 

I know that a number of students are looking to complete their graduate certificate in K-12 instructional computing applications, and due to low enrollment this summer, we had to cancel IDT 7063.  However, we will be offering this course during the fall 2013 semester.     Here is a brief description of the course.

IDT 7063 – Seminar in Instructional Computing
Catalog Description:  Analysis of issues and trends related to instructional computing and instructional technology in K-12 classrooms.
Prerequisite: Six hours of coursework in IDT.
Course Dates: August 24, 2013 – December 12, 2013
Instructor: Dr. Michael M. Grant (me)

IDT 7063 in Fall 2013 will focus on leadership for instructional technology in K-12 schools.  IDT 7063 will align with the tenets of ISTE’s National Educational Technology Standards for teachers (NETS-T) and for technology coaches (NETS-C). In addition to examining current trends and issues with integrating technology, such as one-to-one programs and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD/BYOT) policies, we will consider broader grade-level or school-level issues, such as digital citizenship curricula, levels of technology integration, funding initiatives through small grants, and teacher professional development.

This course is currently undergoing a major revision and update to reflect the most current issues, trends, and skills appropriate for technology integrators.  So, the syllabus is in flux. If you have any questions, though, please feel free to email me.  I hope you’ll consider registering for this course and please share it with anyone you feel may benefit form this information.

I wanted to let you know about an exceptional opportunity.  A former professor of mine, Dr. Lloyd Rieber, will be offering a free online course (MOOC). Dr. Lloyd Rieber is a fantastic teacher, and he speaks in a language students can understand.  I cannot offer a higher recommendation for learning than with Dr. Rieber. As a graduate student, I had the pleasure to team teach with Dr. Rieber on multiple occasions, and Dr. Rieber participated on my dissertation research committee.  While I do not know exactly how this course will be organized, I can say that Dr. Rieber creates and delivers the highest quality instruction.

For you current students, this would be a great learning experience to both learn about Stats and live a MOOC.  Friends and colleagues, you may be able to recommend this opportunity to some of your students or friends.

Here’s the announcement and links:

From: Lloyd P Rieber <lrieber@uga.edu>
Subject: “Statistics in Education for Mere Mortals” a MOOC offered by Lloyd Rieber

I’ll be offering a MOOC on the topic of statistics in education. The MOOC runs from August 4-September 9, 2013 on Canvas.net https://www.canvas.net/ .

Well, the course will be open and online (and free), but we’ll have to see if the “massive” part happens.

Here’s a link to the course site:
https://www.canvas.net/courses/statistics-in-education-for-mere-mortals

I designed the course for “mere mortals,” meaning that I designed it for people who want to know about and use statistics as but one important tool in their work, but who are not — and don’t want to be — mathematicians or statisticians.

An important course requirement is that you have to be able to put up with my sense of humor (or lack thereof).

Here’s the formal course description:

This short course will provide a hands-on introduction to statistics used in educational research and evaluation. Participants will learn statistical concepts, principles, and procedures by building Excel spreadsheets from scratch in a guided learning approach using short video-based tutorials. Examples of specific skills to be learned include scales of measurement, measures of central tendency, measures of variability, and the computation of the following: mean, mode, and median, standard deviation, z (standard) scores, Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient (r), correlated-samples t test (i.e. dependent t test), independent-samples t test (i.e. independent t test), and a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA).

The course is designed primarily for two audiences: 1) educational professionals who would like to be more informed about how to compute basic statistics and how to use them intelligently in their work; and 2) first-year doctoral students who want a short and friendly introduction (or brush up) to basic statistics before taking full graduate-level statistics courses. However, this course would be useful to anyone who wants a good, short, hands-on, friendly introduction to the most fundamental ideas of statistics in education.

Lloyd

**********************************************
* Lloyd P. Rieber
* Director, Innovation in Teaching & Technology for
*   the College of Education
* Professor, Department of Career & Information
*   Studies
* 203 River’s Crossing
* The University of Georgia
* Athens, Georgia  30602-7144  USA
* Phone: 706-542-3986
* FAX: 706-542-4054
* Email: lrieber@uga.edu
*…………………………………….
* http://lrieber.coe.uga.edu/
* http://www.NowhereRoad.com
*

internet and higher education journal cover

internet and higher education journal coverI just wanted to let you know that a former student of mine, Dr. Joanne Gikas, and I have a new article in press right now.  This is part of her dissertation research that focused on how teaching and learning occurred with mobile devices in higher education classrooms.  “Mobile Computing Devices in Higher Education: Student Perspectives on Learning with Cellphones, Smartphones & Social Media” is concerned with the student learning portion of the research, and the data were collected through focus groups with students at three different universities across the country.

We’re really pleased that this research is being published so quickly through The Internet and Higher Education journal.  It was submitted just a couple of months ago and is now in press and available through the journal’s Science Direct “in press” articles section.  That’s pretty amazing!  Here’s the abstract below and let me know if you are unable to access the article through your databases:

The purpose of this research was to explore teaching and learning when mobile computing devices, such as cellphones and smartphones, were implemented in higher education. This paper presents a portion of the findings on students’ perceptions of learning with mobile computing devices and the roles social media played. This qualitative research study focused on students from three universities across the US. The students’ teachers had been integrating mobile computing devices, such as cellphones and smartphones, into their courses for at least two semesters. Data were collected through student focus group interviews. Two specific themes emerged from the interview data: (a) advantages of mobile computing devices for student learning and (b) frustrations from learning with mobile computing devices. Mobile computing devices and the use of social media created opportunities for interaction, provided opportunities for collaboration, as well as allowed students to engage in content creation and communication using social media and Web 2.0 tools with the assistance of constant connectivity.

And if you have comments about the article or the questions about the data, please leave a comment. We’d love to hear what you have to say.

I have just received word from our librarians here on campus fantastic news.  ERIC has announced that they have restored full-text access to articles from 2005 to 2013.  This is great news!  Here is the announcement below.

ERIC Restores Online Access to Full Text from 2005-2013

ERIC has restored online access to more than 21,000 full-text PDFs with publication dates from 2005-2013.  These are documents and journal articles with permission to provide the full text that were previously restricted due to privacy concerns. Restrictions also have been lifted on the release of newly indexed, copyright-cleared full text with publication dates of 2005 or greater.

ERIC will continue to accept requests to restore access to older materials via the online form, and maintain the updated list of released documents. The Spotlight and alert areas on the ERIC home page at eric.ed.gov are kept up-to-date to keep you informed of the latest developments.

As you can see from the announcement above, you can request older documents from ERIC.  I had previously heard that ERIC had decided to prioritize their restoration based on those documents that were accessed or used or requested most often.  The online form to request older documents seems to be in this same direction.

A few years ago, I wrote a book chapter with Janette Hill at The University of Georgia on the complexities of implementing student-centered pedagogies, like project-based learning and problem-based learning.  This chapter “Weighing the Risks with the Rewards: Implementing Student-centered Pedagogy within High Stakes Testing” was published in Understanding Teacher Stress in an Age of Accountability edited by Richard Lambert and Christopher McCarthy, and it seems to be even more relevant as we head toward Common Core implementations and PARCC assessments in Tennessee.

In addition, I feel that there is a growing interest in inquiry and student-centered pedagogies within STEM disciplines. So, I thought I would provide the chapter and link in case you’re interested.

http://www.academia.edu/894278/Weighing_the_Risks_with_the_Rewards_Implementing_Student-centered_Pedagogy_within_High_Stakes_Testing

While somewhat theoretical, this chapter is grounded in the work I’ve done over the years in project-based learning and problem-based learning with K-12 and higher education.  In addition, it presents a balanced view of how students and teachers must adjust and work within their environments.