jump to navigation

8 out of 10 students use wikipedia March 24, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags:
add a comment

Interesting article here from campustechnology on a research project over at UDub.    I use wikipedia fanatically but see this post here for why this might be a problem too.

three interesting articles March 5, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags: ,
add a comment

I came across three interesting articles about jobs, skills, and future of learning.  The first is a “snapshot” of the IT professional, from TechRepublic.  If you’re thinking about IT and computers, this is a nice blow-by-blow of a typical support professional’s work day.

The second article is a prediction of the Top 10 Tech Skills.  It’s based on a survey by TechRepublic and Global Knowledge.  If you’re new to the industry, Business Analysis and Virtualization might be foreign ideas– but I can assure you, they’re BIG! 

The last article I found was the most intriguing.  From CampusTechnology, the writer Trent Batson describes the “knowledge economy” and the kind of challenges educators face when preparing students for the ever-changing landscape of business.  The article is for both teachers and learners.  One of the themes that stands out to me is the need for agility— both personally and in business.  Innovation.  Research.  And yet, Batson writes, a skilled worker needs to also identify a core service, & stick with it, “resisting the abundance of opportunities and side paths in this highly fluid knowledge economy.”

distance learning- your thoughts February 12, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags: , ,
add a comment

I’ve had two recent experiences with distance learning and am looking to do more including the possibility of teaching a class online.  I’m curious about the different challenges people have discovered and what the trainers\teachers out their prefer.  In the vain hope someone actually reads this blog, I’m putting this question to you– yes you!   So, have you taught or attended an online class ?  And if so, what are your thoughts \ experiences?

can you pwn in Office? or does Office pwn you? February 11, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags: , ,
1 comment so far

Here’s an interesting post on education + gaming + MS OFFICE 2010.  The approach here is something I’ve been thinking about for sometime.  Interactive applications like games are a fascinating way to present new information.  Heck, my kids learned to read with Reader Rabbit and they learned to avoid the pretty blue flower in our front yard  (foxglove) while playing Oregon Trail and they learned that Nazis are bad people while playing Medal of Honor and they learned that there are hordes of blonde girls wanting to be their friend– OK, so I’ve gone too far 🙂  but seriously, why not learn about Office?  Or EXCHANGE!    Cisco is already doing this;  they have binary and subnetting games!  I think this is an exciting venue.  Do you?  If you’re looking for more information on the MS OFFICE 2010 Ribbon Hero game, click the earlier link above or go here to Microsoft’s research site.

Understanding understanding February 9, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags: , , ,
add a comment

I recently came across a ten-year old study that explores the significance of “understanding” in learning.  Here’s a list of their key findings:

1.       Students come to the classroom with preconceptions about how the world works. If their initial understanding is not engaged, they may fail to grasp the new concepts and information that are taught, or they may learn them for purposes of a test but revert to their preconceptions outside the classroom.

2.       To develop competence in an area of inquiry, students must: (a) have a deep foundation of factual knowledge, (b) understand facts and ideas in the context of a conceptual framework, and (c) organize knowledge in ways that facilitate retrieval and application.

3.       A “metacognitive” approach to instruction can help students learn to take control of their own learning by defining learning goals and monitoring their progress in achieving them.

The study confirmed some important tactics that I have found useful in the classroom.  For example, I’ve been having my students share with me key facts that they have learned– key facts that they want to remember.  I’ve been using this approach rather than doing a more traditional review where I ask the students questions and the one who knows shouts out an answer.   According to this study, an important part of learning is what is called “meta-cognition”– which I’ll describe here as a kind of “learning awarenesss.”  In short, it’s the dialog students have with themselves about what they have learned and about what they still yet don’t know.  This dialog, according to this study, is an essential part of a student coming to a full understanding of the subject.  By me asking students to think about their learning, I’m encouraging this process as well as exposing what facts may still be missing.

The other key point for me  in this study was the significance of FACT.  I thoroughly appreciate the web with all it’s “wikis” and “blogs” and “learning snacks” but what  I’ve come to appreciate even more is a need to keep challenging myself and my students to dig deeper.  In-depth isn’t a waste of time!   Here’s an excerpt:

In one of the most famous early studies comparing the effects of learning a procedure with learning with understanding, two groups of children practiced throwing darts at a target under water (described in Judd, 1908; see a conceptual replication by Hendrickson and Schroeder, 1941). One group received an explanation of the refraction of light, which causes the apparent location of the target to be deceptive. The other group only practiced dart throwing, without the explanation. Both groups did equally well on the practice task, which involved a target 12 inches under water. But the group that had been instructed about the abstract principle did much better when they had to transfer to a situation in which the target was under only 4 inches of water. Because they understood what they were doing, the group that had received instruction about the refraction of light could adjust their behavior to the new task.

 You can read more of the study for yourself here.  If you’re a fellow teacher \ trainer, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

article on learning styles February 5, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags:
add a comment

I always wondered why my brother just had to touch the burner!  Now I know.  (he’s not as stupid as i thought- 🙂

learning styles BEWARE February 4, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags:
1 comment so far

I was checking out “learning styles” today over on wikipedia and found what is most likely some wiki-vandalism.  The following is an excerpt:

“David Kolb’s Model

The David Kolb styles model is based on the Sexual Learning Theory, as explained in David A. Kolb‘s book Experiential Learning: Experience as the source of learning and development (1984)[4]. The ELT model outlines two related testicles toward grasping experience: Concrete Experience and Abstract Conceptualization”

It makes you wonder if Kolb offended a group-ee from one of the learning groups (I’ve heard that concrete learners can be a bit hard on people he he) or if maybe he’s a part-time teacher for middle schoolers.   At the very least, it shows that wikipedia is still prone to the occasional distortion.

learning styles February 4, 2010

Posted by examROAR in Uncategorized.
Tags:
1 comment so far

So do you tap your feet or jump up and roar when listening to music?  These are the type of questions on this short quiz that explores your learning style.  I found this little quiz easy to take and quick with the results.   It’s not real in depth and it’s analysis is straight-forward- a good place to start if you’re not sure how you learn.