emissia.offline ART 752
Mar 27, 2000
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FIFTH ANNUAL TEACHING IN THE COMMUNITY COLLEGES ONLINE CONFERENCE (A COMPLETELY ONLINE CONFERENCE)
April 12-14, 2000
Theme: A VIRTUAL ODYSSEY: What's Ahead for New Technologies in Learning?
PREVIEW OF PRESENTATIONS FOR THE 2000 CONFERENCE: REAL AND VIRTUAL LANDMARKS
Here, at the start of the 21st century, when we look at the educational landscape before us and focus on the frontier where the real and virtual worlds are mixing and merging, we can begin to identify five major landmarks of concern that will shape our course in the next few years.
1)The most prominent is communication: How do we maintain our humanity, our sense of community, in a world that is defined by electronics?
2)The second is development: How do we cross from here to there, from a world defined by real space and time to a virtual world that we've only begun to explore?
3)The third critical concern is assessment: How do we know if online instruction is effective?
4)The fourth is hybridity: With one foot in the traditional and the other in the virtual, what are the hybrid paths into terra incognita?
5)And the fifth is access: How can we use the Internet to cultivate global education that's accessible to all, especially to the disadvantaged and to those with special needs?
Communication, development, assessment, hybridity, and access--these are the five major landmarks.
FIRST LANDMARK: COMMUNICATION
Not surprisingly, the most prominent landmark of concern is the potential for new technologies to alienate and isolate individual learners. For many educators, however, the real strength of the Internet is, ironically, its power to facilitate and enhance communication. A large number of presentations will focus on this communicative advantage, gathering around three themes: learning communities, interaction, and collaboration.
In the first few years of the new millennium, we can expect the emphasis in colleges around the world to be on using the new technologies to facilitate and enhance the sense of community in online and hybrid classes, focusing on person- to-person interaction and collaboration. Frank W. Yurgens, in "Community and Collaboration in Online English Composition," uses e-mail, ICQ, MOO, and threaded group discussions in his second-semester freshman course to encourage a sense of community and collaboration. The theme of his course is cyberspace and the effects that it has had and continues to have on our society. Ernestine K. Enomoto and Lynn Tabata, in "Creating Virtual Learning Communities through Distance Learning Technologies," use a variety of electronic, multimedia technologies in their graduate course to create a viable, interactive, virtual learning community.
Presenters will discuss theories and research that inform the construction of online learning communities. Bridget Arend, in "The Art of Letting Go: Using Groups Effectively Online," will explore theories and techniques of group dynamics and group processes, and will share her discoveries re best practices in composing, moderating, and evaluating online groups. Anne Bliss, in "Identity and Presence in Web-based Courses," will explore the technological and sociocultural aspects of online instruction, which can disallow, permit, or enable the creation of successful learning communities in which true identities can be safely revealed, and both teachers and students can establish an authentic presence. And Lori Herod, in "Interpersonal Presence in Computer- Mediated Conferencing Courses," will discuss interpersonal presence, which may be thought of as the cues we use to form impressions of one another (e.g., personality, attitudes, likes/dislikes) and by which relationships of varying depth, duration, and purpose are formed.
The Internet will expand the limits of community to include networking that stretches far beyond the traditional classroom. For example, Michael Coghlan and Vance Stevens, in "An Online Learning Community -- The Students' Perspective," will discuss their web-based writing course: The Webheads community has evolved into a full-fledged online learning community where students may or may not be actively or officially studying English, and peer tutoring in matters pertaining to English language learning and the use of new learning technologies are strong elements in the interactions of community members.
The challenge for online instructors will be to discover and exploit the interactive, humanizing potential of the Internet. Bradley W. Bleck, in "John Dewey's 'Educative Experience' and MOOs as Learning Environments," will demonstrate that by establishing a relationship between the relatively new technology of the MOO and the often accepted educational philosophy of Dewey, at least one of the barriers keeping faculty from teaching with technology may be eliminated or reduced: the fear that teaching with technology will be less interactive, less human, and less effective.
Presenters will describe specific ways to generate interactivity. For example, Joyce D. Meyer, in "Citizenship on the Internet," will discuss experiential exercises and other assignments, requirements, recommendations, and guidelines that encourage student participation in the on- line community; she will also explore how instructors can be proactive in promoting the qualities of good netizenship. Julie Gibson and Philip Rutherford, in "Growing a Natural Classroom Dynamic on the Web," will provide a step-by-step demonstration of how they are using interactive web pages to deliver courses and learning support.
Barbara L. Nubile, in "Managing Online Communication with On- Campus Students," will describe how she uses WebBoard. She will also provide an opportunity to explore her site, which includes a WebBoard tutorial that allows users to access the site, post questions, and explore the possibilities of an online conferencing system. Marie Jasinski and Sivasailam "Thiagi" Thiagarajan, in "Virtual Games Real Learning: A Seriously Fun Way to Learn Online," will share virtual games that rely on communication technologies such email, bulletin boards, and chat; these activities offer unique opportunities for learner-to-learner and learner-to-facilitator interactions.
Presenters will report on interactive strategies in various disciplines. For example, Katherine Watson, in "Creating an Administrative/Educational Nexus for Language Learners Online: A Learning Community Born from Interactivity," uses the multifaceted Web with French language students working to improve their fluency online. Merilyn Taylor and Fred Biddulph, in "Developing a Truly Interactive Undergraduate On-line Course," will discuss the challenges involved in developing and teaching an on-line, interactive advanced undergraduate course in curriculum development. Michael Benton, in "Problematizing the Borders of Popular, Elite, and Resistant Culture: Guillermo Gomez-Pena, Bennetton, Adbusters, Douglas Rushkoff and Taco Bell," will discuss the Internet as an excellent medium to explore the different representations of popular, elite, and resistance cultures through an examination of online discourses.
The virtual environment offers unprecedented opportunities for collaborative learning activities. Jan-Michelle Sawyer, in "The Online Phenomena of Transformative Learning," will discuss ways in which learners actively create knowledge and meaning through experimentation, discovery, and exploration of ideas shared online. She says that it is the relationships and interactions among people through which knowledge is primarily generated in online courses. Lynn E. Davie and John Stathakos, in "Collaborative Learning on the Internet: Learning Partnerships in the Online Classroom," will share a collaborative online model, learning partnerships, highlighting administrative, teaching, and learning benefits.
Professors are discovering innovative strategies to encourage collaboration. Vanessa Dennen, in "Using Problem-based Learning in the Online Classroom: A Study of Collaborative Learning Groups," will discuss the effectiveness as well as the additional hurdles she encountered when applying problem- based learning (PBL) in her online course. Ruby Evans, in "Providing a Learning-Centered Instructional Environment," will describe a learning-centered instructional environment in which students are actively, cooperatively, and collaboratively engaged. Thomas R. Danford, in "Collaborative Group Work in OnLine Biology Courses," will discuss the unique nature of the MOO that allows for construction of a collaborative project via a "janitor character" so that each group member contributes anonymously to the project: specifics of collaborative group work (CGW) evaluation and grading as well as examples from introductory biology and microbiology courses will be highlighted.
SECOND LANDMARK: DEVELOPMENT
The second most prominent landmark of concern is development, or how to make our way in this uncertain terrain. The three areas that presenters will focus on are program, instructional, course, and professional.
The first few years of the new millennium will see an increase in planning for the development of comprehensive online programs. Many colleges are offering online degree programs. Judy A. Serwatka, in "Distance Learning for Computer Information Students: What Works, What Doesn't," will report on developments at Purdue University Calumet, where they have expanded online course offerings for Computer Information students to include all of the courses in their Associate Degree and have just gotten that degree approved by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education as an on-line degree; their next step is to offer their Bachelor Degrees on-line.
Veronica E. Lyaschenko, in "Distance Education for Central Asia through the Internet," will discuss a model of the virtual university system that is needed in Central Asian colleges, including the kinds of courses that might be offered, procedures for attending online classes, and evaluation.
Once programs are in place. the competition for online students will be fierce. Jacquelyn G. Abromitis, in "Trend Analysis of Distance Education and Implications for Public Postsecondary Institutions," feels that public higher education institutions, both 4-year and 2-year, are in a position to be leaders in distance education, and if they do not take the opportunity to capture the "market," privatized colleges will take the market from them. Re marketing, Bruce Cheung, in "Online Alumni and Classified Community," suggests that the success of online programs will depend on promotions aimed at the appropriate classified communities.
A critical issue in the development of online programs is compensation. Jeannette L. Sasmor, in "The Innovation College--An Update," will report on faculty load for online courses, both for development and delivery; intellectual property rights; potential copyright problems; and models for long-term profit sharing between the college and faculty. She says that the spirit of cooperation and mutual problem- solving lends optimism to the work.
While there are many advantages to the virtual medium, Ed Coll advises caution. In "From On Ground Face Time to Virtually Yours," he warns that the transformation of traditional higher education into virtual learning environments is driven by the corporate desire to privatize public resources to maximize profits and create a large, low- wage, highly skilled labor pool.
In "Looking Backward: Using the Past to Examine the Future," Denis Hlynka and Eric Crone will explore milestones in the history of instructional and information technologies to provide a context for new technologies in learning. In the coming years, the educational landscape will be transformed by new technologies. Palmer W. Agnew, Anne S. Kellerman, and Bernardo Torres, in "Some Technologies, Trends, and Price Break Throughs Offering Advantage to Teachers in the 21st Century," will discuss ClearType, the bandwidth time line, implications for Web appliances such as Motorola's cell phone, significant price breakthroughs in technology, and video digitizing cards.
Online instructors will continue to explore and discover innovative uses for the new technologies. For example, Lisa Weber and Jennifer Lieberman, in "Strategies for Effective Use of Chat: When, Why, and How to Make It Work," will describe pedagogical uses of chat and chat-room management techniques as well as coping strategies for instructors and their students, with a special focus on the language classroom. Rachelle Darabi and Deb Sewards, in "Teaching Students to Publish Web Pages in a Writing Class," will report on web page design and its value in teaching the importance of audience: students understand that their product can be viewed by anyone with internet access.
Marguerite "Mimi" Will, in "ALT + CTRL + DEL = Successful Online Learning," will present several examples illustrating how each student can create his/her own individualized plan for success in her web-based class in Intermediate Internet and Web Techniques, in its third year. Francois Lachance, in "Reading and Searching: Tools and Skills," will discuss text- analysis software and how it enhances a user's willingness to conduct re-iterative and successive searches on the same body of material; within an environment of computer-mediated communication, an individual user's results can be shared and discussed with other users.
Applications of the new technologies must be informed by sound learning theories. Alan Altany, in "Learning with Technology: Spiritual, Mystical and Paradoxical Memories of the Future," will discuss a radical need to recall forgotten visions of learning as necessary if learning technologies are to be more than constantly passing fads and innovations leading nowhere on a deadening, though spectacular, information superhighway. Satoru Shinagawa, in "Teaching Japanese On-line," will share what he has discovered about new study habits that students will need to develop to learn a language online.
Instructors are merging new technologies with successful traditional strategies. For example, Susan Gaer, in "Project Based Learning: Pros and Cons," will share her experiences with language instruction through technology enhanced project work in a community college non-credit setting. Jane Sisk, in "The Emerging Role of the Electronic Mentor," will provide an initial analysis of the role of the electronic mentor within new learning technologies.
Mark Mabrito, in "Designing and Developing an Online Writing Course," will suggest ways to develop an online writing course (specifically, an undergraduate course in business writing) that accommodates various learning styles, effectively uses resources of the Web, and attempts to simulate features of the face-to-face classroom. Mary I. Dereshiwsky, in "The Ten Commandments of Success in CyberInstruction," will share ten "rules of thumb" for a positive experience in web-based teaching and learning.
The new technologies will alter the ways in which courses are developed. With an eye on the issues involved in developing an online course, Danilo M. Baylen and Joan Glacken, in "Educating Health Care Professionals at a Distance: A Case Study of an Online Course," will describe and discuss the process of building a prototype and the lessons they learned from their experience. Emily Golson, in "Sorting Out Different Expectations for Online Courses," will describe the different expectations that shaped one of their university's first online courses; they will also discuss the various accommodations that have gone into three years of teaching the course.
Kwi Park-Kim, in "Teaching On-line: Lessons Learned from CUNY On-Line Project," will focus on issues related to migrating to online courses and best practices for improving online communication. Online instruction requires more than simply placing course content on the web for student learners. Libby Roeger, in "Teaching Aristotle New Tricks: Building Ethos and Pathos--Audience Appeal into Web-Based Instruction," will discuss quality teaching and how instructors must consider how ethos (credibility) and pathos (emotional appeal) may be applied to course content in order to facilitate reader/student and writer/teacher communication.
D. Jason Nolan, in "VASE: The Virtual Assignment Server Environment," will report on the VASE project, which is designed to develop a web-based environment for the creation, completion, submission, and publication of student course work over the world wide web. Key issues are educator- centred, web-based software environments, open-source technologies for education, and relocalizing the control of online learning technologies into the hands of the educators and out of the control of non-teaching technicians.
With all these innovations in the wind, perhaps the greatest challenge is in the area of professional development. Karen McComas, in "Developing and Sustaining Online Communities for Teachers," will chronicle the development of a community of teachers who share an interest in teacher research; the demands of participating in an online community, sustaining an online community, and engaging in teacher research activities will be discussed. A key issue in the decision to make the move to a virtual classroom is readiness: Irene Ilott, Penelope Robinson, and Ruth Garner, in "Enabling Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists to Engage in the Information Age," will report the results of a study to determine whether those working in the health and social care sector are ready to engage in the information age.
It isn't surprising that an effective medium for professional development just happens to be the Internet. Claire Brooks and Carole McCulloch, in "Avatars, Teachers and Other Mythological Creatures: Use of Fictionalised Identities for Professional Development in Teaching and Learning Online," will describe how they used avatars (fictional, created personalities) as teaching aids during a statewide professional development program for Victorian (Australian) vocational educational sector workers.
Jeffrey Ferris Cooper, in "Mr. C's MUVE LinC Project," will report on a project designed to help K-12 educators collaborate online both through synchronous and asynchronous means utilizing several Educational MUVEs. A long-standing medium for professional development has been professional journals; in the virtual world, however, new issues emerge. D. Michele Jacobsen and Charles F. Webber, in "Electronic Publication: A New Medium with Emergent Editorial Issues," will outline key online editorial issues that include institutional recognition of editorial work in an online format, journal design, submission-to-publication time lines, automatic international readership, site maintenance and archiving, copyright, interactivity, and reader accessibility.
THIRD LANDMARK: ASSESSMENT
In the midst of these changes, many are advising caution. Cody Ding, in "Evaluating with Technology: Spectacular Danger and Myth of the Future Learning," warns that seemingly fancy and spectacular ways of learning, enabled by technology, may be more of a myth in terms of what it can do for our education; there is a great need for us to calm down and evaluate the consequences of online learning.
Daniel D. Gross and Vicki Burford, in "Communicating Care in Online Courses: Rhetorical Strategies for Meeting Expressed Student Confusion and Frustration with Online Instruction," suggest an evaluative strategy. In their study, they analyzed, categorized, and critiqued actual responses to expressed student confusion and frustration with online courses.
Deb LaPointe, in "Distance Learning Course Evaluations: What Do Distance Learners Expect from Us?", suggests course monitoring and evaluation to inform instructors about distance learners' expectations, difficulties the distance learners are experiencing, breakdowns in communication systems, and the kind of help individual distance learners need.
Studies comparing traditional and virtual classes may also be useful. Brian Miller, in "Nutrition Education Online: An Alternative to Large-Class Environments?", will report on his comparison of academic achievement between undergraduate students in an introductory nutrition course online and students taking the same course in a large-class lecture format.
FOURTH LANDMARK: HYBRIDITY
Perhaps the most prevalent trend in the coming years will be toward hybrid approaches. Greg Beatty, in "Learning from Hybridity: Lessons for a Present Future," defines hybridity as classes that are part online, part face-to-face (F2F), or F2F with technological augmentation. E. Marshall Wick, in "Creating Significant Differences through Web Enhanced Courses," will focus on the various web features in courses such as Business Law and Introduction to Business that can make a significant difference in the learning process, especially for students who have a weak command of language.
The new technologies are often viewed as a new mode of learning. John Fitzsimmons and Wendy O'Brien, in "Online Resistance: Learning Learning Modalities while Studying the Short Story," suggest that encouraging student competence in various modalities may resolve many difficulties of using online, flexible learning, i.e., online becomes one of many possibilities.
Some professors feel that approaches to online teaching are content-specific, i.e., certain techniques are not compatible with their discipline. However, Amy Braziller and Diane Hegeman, in "Hybrid Instruction as a Learning Solution," will argue that their high-tech, high-touch approach can be used for all disciplines and all styles of teaching.
Vincent K. Pollard, in "Digital Equity in Online-enhanced Political Science Classes," will share concerns and inferences arising from his experiences in teaching online- enhanced introductory and advanced political science courses and a senior project tutorial; the presentation will summarize focused case studies in sufficient detail, and Pollard will invite the audience to agree, question, or challenge both his enthusiasm and his concerns.
FIFTH LANDMARK: ACCESS
The promise of the Internet is universal access, especially to those with special needs. Ruth Garner, Margaret Dilloway, and Pearl Whiten, in "Uniting Europe: Tackling Employment Needs of People from Disability or Disadvantaged Groups through Learning Technology," will report on the UK JOB project, a European-funded program that delivers remote vocational guidance to people with disabilities and from disadvantaged groups: the different approaches taken by the UK, Italy, Finland, Spain, France, and Greece will be briefly described and the key features of shared learning between different cultures will be discussed.
Sara K. Hendley and Jackie Waller, in "Enabling People with the Greatest Need to Access the Best of What Is Available: Preparing Tutors, Therapists and Mentors to Use ICT to Deliver Services to People in Their Own Home," will demonstrate how the JOB project has been really innovative in piloting a new service to people with disabilities in their own home, in exploring delivery through Computer Mediated Communication to this client group, and in delivering a seamless service; they will also discuss the Virtual Tutors programme that was developed under the project.
Mary Hricko, in "Distance Education and Special Needs Students: Providing Access with Adaptive Technologies," will examine how adaptive technologies in the classroom should be applied in the distance learning setting. Mary Ellen Nourse, in "Adaptive Technologies for 2000," will review commercial, shareware, and freeware resources available for physically challenged computer users.
Another aspect of universal access is the breaking of national and cultural barriers to learning. Loretta Kasper, in "Collaborative Focus Discipline Research and the Internet: A Content-Based Intercultural Exchange," will describe a content-based, intercultural Internet collaboration in which CUNY ESL students, as part of a project-based curriculum, worked with college students in other parts of the country/world to research topics in a discipline of choice.
Gloria L. Mcmillan, in "Hosting Live Global Literary Sessions at DU MOO," will discuss the original idea to hold global literary sessions (GLS) at a MOO, using hosts from the country of the author or genre being studied.
To Register: http://leahi.kcc.hawaii.edu/org/tcon2000
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Edit. correction: A.Akhayan, The Emissia Laboratory, St.Petersburg, SU