Monthly Archives: January, 2013

Educational Technologies- Mobile Learning

Educational Technologies- Mobile Learning

Smart phones are everywhere you turn from the youngest of users to the oldest of users.  Smart phones have changed the way we see and use cell phones.  Two decades ago, I never would have thought I would use a smart phone to review discussion boards, check emails, and or grades.  Now, this is only a small view of what smart phones can do for the student.   Fast-forwarding to today the smart phone can go pass your wildest imagination for the classroom.

Smart phones and education have made a nice pairing for example Blackboard mobile is a popular app that can be used to check assignments, discussion board postings and so on.  Smart phones have the ability to give the learner access to school 24/7 whenever and wherever if this option is selected.  Smart phones take learning in a hold different direction for example every time you use your smart phone you are informally learning and this is a beautiful thing.  

With that, said educators can use this informal learning to take connected to their learners via “twitter for instance feedback” (Dunn, 2012).  “Students now have the ability to do research on a topic within the class” from the internet that is provided on their smart phones (Inside Halton.com, 2012).  No more waiting to class is over to go to the library or making time to even go to the library.  

The first way that I would incorporate smart phones would be to encourage organizational skills and suggest applications that could be helpful to learners for example, the apps for the school and Evernote.  Second, I would incorporate smart phones to help learners share their information on an agreed social networking site such as Delicious to share information about the course.  My rationale behind selecting smart phones is simple almost everyone has one and the technology is user friendly.

Tablets and or iPads in education have made learning and completing assignments much easier verses not having these devices at all.  With tablets and ipads learners have the ability to take their work with them anywhere and download apps that can make their school lives easier.  I selected both of these devices because of their portability and the resources that these two devices can hold are unimaginable. “Tablets are especially suited for today’s fast-paced, modern learning environments and tablet versions of textbooks, with interactive and visual tools for teachers” (Mobiledia.com, 2013).  I would use either of these devices in the classroom for electronic library database use.  Secondly, using apps that can be download onto tablets or iPads to help with locating information on the physical campus by using one of the gps apps that are free and readily available.

References
Dunn, J., (2012). The 60-second guide to smartphones in education. Retrieved from,
http://edudemic.com/2012/08/the-60-second-guide-to-smartphones-in-education/

Dykes, T., (2012) Smartphones as educational tools in the classroom. Retrieved from

http://www.insidehalton.com/iphone/opinion/article/1520592–smartphones-as-educational-tools-in-the-classroom

Rock, M. , (2013). The future of education: tablets vs. textbooks. Retrieved from

http://m.mobiledia.com/news/136174.html

Educational Technologies Blog- Social Networking

Social networking is a wonderful tool that “can change the way the learner looks at education” (Smith, 2013).
Delicious is the first social networking site that I found to have the following features “store, organize, and share links” (Delicious, 2013). As an educator, I have the ability to set-up of area on Delicious so that learners can come together and share information with their peers and view course information or other relevant information for the class to view. Delicious is a form of RSS that “lets reads and connect with what others write; now we can read and connect with what others read as well” (Richardson, 2010).
Facebook is the second networking site that can give the benefits of collaborating, socializing with peers and professionals, built communication skills, and learn about the technology. A nice feature of Facebook and the classroom is that discussions can take place between learners and the educators. “Facebook can be used to “facilitate a discussion group” another benefit is that most learners are “familiar and comfortable” with Facebook (Walsh, 2010). From what I remember about Facebook, it was a way to stay in contact with friends and family. However, today Facebook has the resource and technology to enhance the learning experience.

References
Richardson, W. (2010). Blogs, wikis, podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms (3rd
ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.
Smith, F. (2013). How to use social-networking technology for learning. Retrieved from,
http://www.edutopia.org/how-use-social-networking-technology
Walsh, K. (2010). Facebook as an instructional technology tool. Retrieved from,
http://www.emergingedtech.com/2010/08/facebook-as-an-instructional-technology-tool/

Potential Applications and Multimedia Resources to help Enhance Adult Education

There are several different applications and multimedia resources available to adult educators today to help with facilitating learning and engage learners within our classes. The first application that I would use to help enhance the learning environment would be Google docs. I have prior knowledge of this application and I have found the application to be resourceful. Google docs would help me to bring learners together outside of the classroom so that they are able to collaborate on group assignments. Having a collaborative tool application as a best practice would also help me introduce learning communities for my learners. I teach a career planning course and working on different areas of your career can be a challenge. Learners can use Google docs to start a circle for their specific career field and make connections to help them network, goal setting, and other important steps they need to take to enhance their career and learning within the class. Google docs is also known as Google drive as this is where all of the features are available for use. Google docs can be used after the class as well so the learners take a technology resource with them to help to continue with their learning and development.
The url for Google drive which is Google docs is https://www.google.com/intl/en_US/drive/start/index.html this link can give you an overall view and features of the application.

The second application is Edmodo, now this application I do not have experience with; however, this application would be great as a collaborative tool as well. Edmodo has similar feature to Google drive, but this tool is design for the educator. For example, Edmodo focuses on the classroom and helping “teachers make their classroom a community” (Edmodo, 2013). Some of the features for Edmodo are “shared content, discuss lessons, form communities, and media presentations” (Edmodo, 2013). There are plenty of other useful features within this application. I think everyone could find something that would help with their own set of best practices when facilitating their courses. I selected this application tool because the features of this application can help within my teaching practices. For example, I would be able to have my own professional community within this application. Other educators would be able to share their best practices, as I would be able to. With all of the technology that we have today I think that is important to have a professional community that educators can use as a resource and Edmodo allows this benefit along with the tools to facilitate a successful learning experience for learners. The url for Edmodo is http://about.edmodo.com/ .

The multimedia resources that I use currently while facilitating courses online are a whiteboard and Power Points for presentations. Through the school that I teach at, we use Abode tools to facilitate live chat sessions and give presentations via Power Point. The multimedia resource that I researched to compare is CoSketch is a resource that allows for you to share information on a whiteboard. A feature of CoSketch is “simple sharing” of ideas or information (CoSketch, unknown). Other features that are nice that I could use within my teaching practices would the “embedded feature for forums, blogs, and websites” (Educational technology, 2012) as this is not available to me in the resource, I currently use. I selected CoSketch because it is easy to use by the learner and educator not to mention it is a free resource. Learners could also find this helpful when brainstorming for assignments as well as educators would find it useful for explaining assignments and giving examples.
The url for CoSketch is http://www.cosketch.com/

Second multimedia resource I would like to use is Skype in the classroom. I know this maybe a bit surprising but from what I learned, educators and learners can benefit from this resource. For example, a “learning community, discovery, language skills, and cultural exchange” are some of the benefits of using Skype in the classroom (Skype, 2013). I selected the multimedia tool because for online educators and learners building a support team to help facilitate learning is important. Another reason for selecting Skype would be that leaners and educators could build a rapport and connection with a face beyond words on a screen and have that “audio content” as a resource, Author Will Richardson quotes “Personally, I think there is a huge potential for using Skype this way in the classroom” (Richardson, p. 119, 2010). To incorporate Skype into my professional practices I would use the feature of cultural exchange “to help learners see new ways of seeing the world” (Skype, 2013) and build language skills as this would be helpful for ESL learners.
The url for Skype https://education.skype.com/about

References
CoSketch. (unknown). CoSketch. Retrieved from, http://www.cosketch.com/
Educational technology. (2012) Educational technology and mobile learning. CoSketch. Retrieved from, http://www.educatorstechnology.com/2011/02/cosketch-teachers-virtual-online.html
Edmodo. (2013). Edmodo. Retrieved from, http://about.edmodo.com/
Edmodo. (2013). Edmodo features. Retrieved from, http://www.edmodo.com/features
Richardson, W. (2010). Blogs, wikis, podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.
Skype. (2013). About Skype in the classroom. Retrieved from, https://education.skype.com/about

Adjusting to new Technology

Technology you cannot live with it and you cannot live without it currently. Well, if you really tried to live without it you could. Some of the first experiences with the shift in technology I remember were automated customer service lines, and texting on a number pad and having to press the number a few times to get to the letter you want. Technology is a wonderful thing, however if you do not know how to use it or if you were not knowledgeable in some way, you are completely lost when you get on board.

Needless, to say once you are on board you are hooked for example if you had a Blackberry this may have been your first experience of having your work life at your fingertips. On the other hand, how about being able to record your favorite shows and watch other shows all at the same time? More importantly, being able to do your homework at 3’olock in the morning when the house is quiet. Also, this could be when you have or had an aha moment for the assignment that you just could not focus on until the day of.

Technology has made it easier for the working adult to return to school. Technology is making it easier for adult educators to engage their learners. With that cloud computing and mobile applications are helping to bridge the convenience of online classes and having all the resources you need at your fingertips. Now, the key is learning to use this technology and implementing this technology into our best practices to further enhance the learning for our students.

Emgerging Technologies in Education

The first emerging technology that I would like to share is “cloud computing” this technology is a “web-based tools that allows instructors and students to collaborate online” (Edudemic, 2012). Within a previous class, I have experience a small view of cloud computing while working in a group. Our group used Google docs to share individual contributions and have group chats to discuss the assignments. Within this setting, we were able to interact a bit more verses just the normal posting to discussion boards. I first learned about Google docs from my daughter as her personal finance class using this resource for group projects. I selected cloud computing because the features are very helpful in building engagement, interaction, and learning how to work together in a virtual environment. I can introduce this technology within a course that I teach to help learners collaborate on assignments and or come together to work in a small study group to get that additional help they may need. Cloud computing also allows students to create a small community if they wanted to outside of the classroom that can aid in the engagement

The second emerging technology would be “mobile applications” that you can use on your smartphone, ipad, and ereader (Edudemic, 2012). Mobile applications allow students to have access to their class via mobile Blackboard. Other resources that are helpful to students would be Evernote. With Evernote you “can store all resources research for an assignment or keep your documents all in one place for organization and or easy access when needed” (Evernote, 2013). I selected mobile applications as an emerging technology because students will not be restricted to where they can access their data or when they can access their classroom. Mobile applications allow students to have access at all times to their courses or resources needed to have success in their class. I would introduce using mobile applications as way to stay connected with your courses on the go and suggest organization tips that can be used on the go with mobile applications.

References:

Emerging technologies. 2012. Emerging technologies. Retrieved from http://edudemic.com/2012/12/6-emerging-technologies-in-education/

Edudemic. 2012. Mobile apps. Retrieved from http://edudemic.com/2012/10/most-used-mobile-apps-education/

Evernote. 2012. Retrieved from http://evernote.com/