January 22, 2018

Stommel Talks About Student Performance

Jesse Stommel, executive director of Teaching and Learning Technology, was quoted in Elon News about student performance: “My anecdotal experience over 17 years of teaching is that my students are getting better and better and smarter and smarter,” Stommel said. “They are working harder and harder and I honestly believe that my students are performing better.” To read the article, visit http://www.elonnewsnetwork.com/article/2018/01/6tq9eytfgtzuuk1

Stommel Quoted in Inside Higher Ed

Jesse Stommel, executive director of the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies at UMW,  and founding director of the Hybrid Pedagogy journal, was quoted recently in Inside Higstommelher Ed. In the article, “Do Professors Need Automated Help Grading Online Comments?,” Stommel said that he found Blackboard’s proposal to evaluate student writing in this way to be alarming. “There is certainly space for technology to help us create dialogue in an online class, but using a technology to assess the success of a discussion, ultimately it reduces student engagement to a rote series of behaviors. ‘Write a comment of 60 words, citing two sources, responding to at least one of your classmates’ — those kinds of behaviors do not make a discussion successful. They’re arbitrary markers.”

 

 

Groom Keynotes Conference at University of Oklahoma

Jim Groom, executive director of teaching and learning technologies, presented the keynote at the University of Oklahoma’s 2015 Academic Technology Expo discussing the vision undergirding the Domain of One’s Own initiative that originated at UMW. The presentation, “Domain of One’s Own: Digital Agency in the 21st Century,” explored the importance of providing students, faculty, and staff with an innovative, web-based platform for owning, managing and migrating the digital work they create over the course of their academic careers.

Groom Featured in Tech Trends Article

Jim Groom, executive director of teaching and learning technologies, was featured in Hack Edu’s “Top Ed-Tech Trends of 2014” discussing the Domain of One’s Own project at UMW. Check out the full article at http://2014trends.hackeducation.com/indie.html.

Wired Article Highlights DTLT’s Known Pilot

WiredLogoAn article in yesterday’s Wired about the open source blogging application Known mentioned the pilot work being done in UMW’s Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies. Known provides a space where students can manage and publish their posts for various social media sites through their own application, controlling the archival copy of their work. It rethinks the users relationship to ownership of their data across sites like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, SoundCloud, etc. Right now, Jim Groom’s Digital Storytelling course and Zach Whalen’s Introduction to Digital Studies are exploring this application.

One of the points made in the Wired article, that reinforces some of the possibilities of the Domain of One’s Own project, is that the campus can quickly and easily pilot new, cutting edge applications that are defining what many refer to as the Indie Web Movement.

Jim Groom Co-Authors Article in EDUCAUSE Review

Jim Groom and Brian Lamb published the article  “Reclaiming Innovation” in the May/June edition of EDUCAUSE Review. The article examines the state of innovation in higher education in regards to information and education technologies. Additionally, the article featured a series of supplemental videos about various sites of innovation, including one focusing on UMW’s intiaitive Domain of One’s Own. You can read the article online here and watch the video below.

Jim Groom Talks UMW Domains

Since early March of 2014 Jim Groom has delivered numerous invited presentations about the work the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies (DTLT) has been doing with Domain of One’s Own.

On March 6 Groom delivered a featured session at the 2014 Digital Media Learning Conference in Boston, Mass. focused around the theme of Connected Practices. The presentation was titled “Domain of One’s Own: Notes from the Trailing Edge,” and it delves into the question of why higher ed has turned its back on the web for teaching and learning, an invention it in many ways made possible. Here’s an extended post framing the thinking behind this presentation, and there is also an archived video of this presentation below (the Domain of One’s Own discussion starts at minute 32:00).

On March 14 Groom was invited to deliver the keynote presentation at UMW’s 4th annual EdTech Conference titled “Reclaim Learning: A Domain of One’s Own.” This presentation examined a decade’s worth of experimentation and development at the University of Mary Washington that has resulted in a series of innovative projects such as UMW Blogs, ds106, and Domain of One’s Own. The presentation examined the common denominator of these edtech projects: they operate from a shared ethos of supporting an open environment for teaching and learning online by helping faculty and students alike exert control over the digital spaces they learn, teach, and live in.

On March 28 Groom was invited to keynote the Baruch College’s 17th Annual Teaching and Technology Conference. The presentation was titled “Domain in the Afterglow Or, What we Can Learn about Digital Identity from Geocities” and it explored the development of web publishing at universities during the mid-90s as well as the emergence of one of the earlier social media sites: Geocities. The presentation explores how higher ed turned away from the open web as platform at the turn of the millennium in exchange for coherence, security, and ease-of-use, the issue remains what was lost in that sacrifice. You can see the slide below and read more about the pesentation on Jim Groom’s blog here.

On April 10 Groom delivered the keynote presentation at the Sloan-C Emerging Technologies Conference titled “Domains in the Afterglow” that was a further tightening of the talk delivered at Baruch College almost two weeks earlier.  The focal point being how can universities more broadly support an infrastructure beyond the learning management system that enables digital literacy and creates a student-centric technology ecosystem. Below is a video of the talk, and here is a trail of the Twitter conversation that resulted from this presentation. You can read more about this presentation on Jim Groom’s blog here.

Sloan-C Keynote Talk

More recently, on April 26 and 27 Jim Groom was invited down to Emory University, along with Tim Owens and Martha Burtis, to discuss Domain of One’s Own with representatives from various colleges in the Atlanta region at the Domain Incubator. This was a conference inspired by the work happening at UMW, and the two-day intensive program was dedicated to sharing the work UMW and Emory (who is running a pilot of Domains this year) have been doing over the last year. The keynote presentation Groom delivered was titled “Domain of One’s Own: a Problem of Coherence” and you can see the video below. The talk, which relies heavily on the ideas and words of Jon Udell, explores the deeper cultural implications of Domain of One’s Own by taking a broader view of the idea of coherent personal digital archives as something we will all need in the near future.

Martha Burtis and Jim Groom Present at Symposium

On Feb. 21 Martha Burtis and Jim Groom were invited to present about the open, online Digital Storytelling course ds106 at the OpenVCU Symposium. The presentation, “Open is as Open Does,” lays bare the various levels an open course like ds106 operates through. This talk breaks down teaching openly online into three parts: open platforms, open pedagogy, and open community. You can read about the presentation in more detail here or view the slide deck below.

Announcing MediaCore

The Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies is pleased to announce that it has partnered with MediaCore to run a pilot installation of their media platform. MediaCore will give members of the UMW community the ability to control and curate their own media collections. It will be more than just a “campus YouTube”.

Students having their own media space is crucial for their experimentation and expression (kind of like “Domain of One’s Own“). What better way to do it than within an educational context and a platform that is specifically geared toward educational media hosting. MediaCore will serve that function and allow students to share their media work locally behind a login, or make their work public when they want/need to.

The other idea behind using MediaCore is the idea of curating “collections”. Youtube, Vimeo, and even content from TED Talks and Archive.org can be curated by a user to share unique combinations of media elements. It allows the viewer to go to one place to view media from disparate places. “Playlists” can then be easily incorporated into a WordPress site, or in Instructure Canvas – the university Learning Management System.

MediaCore is also “mobile ready”, from both a viewing aspect as well as an “ingestion” aspect. MediaCore’s Capture app for mobile devices allows a user to capture video and upload directly into their MediaCore space. However, it’s not limited to video. It might also include images, screenshots, screencasts, or other video produced in any app that saves to your smartphone.

Finally, what will make MediaCore special to the UMW community is the integration with WordPress (both UMW Blogs and the Domain of One’s Own initiative) and with Canvas. MediaCore makes available a WordPress plugin and Canvas integration that will allow users to post video to a WordPress post or page, and any Canvas area (pages, modules, etc.) that uses the visual text editor. You can also upload video to MediaCore through the WordPress or Canvas plugin interfaces.

The UMW instance of MediaCore will be located at http://mediahub.umw.edu. We will be limited to 100 accounts that will be able to view and upload content privately, but all of the UMW community will be able to see any video that is made public. For more information on the UMW MediaCore installation, visit the UMW New Media MediaCore page.

UMW Domains in the News

UMW’s innovative initiative Domain of One’s Own has been receiving recognition in trade and academic publications alike. University Business, a publication for IT managers, published an article last week framing this innovative new approach to giving members of their campus the keys to the server. The author of the article for University BusinessMatt Zalaznick,  talked with Tim Owens of the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies about the project and below is an excerpt from the article.

The tools provided by the “Domain of One’s Own” initiative make it easier for students to carve out their own space on the web, and control and customize it…

“Students want to make something their own—to personalize it and say this is my space, this is who I am, in a way to personify themselves on the web,” Owens says.

Users have complete control over the content and the design of the page. Mary Washington students can install a variety of open source software, such as the blogging platform WordPress, to help them design their sites.

Additionally, David Morgen (Emory University) and Pete Rorbaugh (Southern Polytechnic State University) published an article in Hybrid Pedagogy this week framing the theoretical context for building a cross-institutional community around web literacies at this moment. What’s more, they used the work happening at the Unviersity of Mary Washington with UWM Domains as their inspiration:

UMW’s Domain of One’s Own initiative offers a possible link between the experimental workings of a connectivist MOOC and an on-ground or hybrid course offered at an institution. The move toward hybridity goes both ways, and while higher education has been mostly exploring how to export a serviceable replica of face-to-face culture into online space (short answer: we can’t, and that culture has to be re-imagined in a fresh context) some of us have been interested in taking the networked values of viable online communities and dragging them across the boundary into our classrooms.