Survey of Emerging Tools
- Locate tools or services that look promising for teaching and learning, giving particular emphasis to web-based tools
- Categorize tools and services based on purpose or potential use
- Differentiate between similar tools based on usability, features, barriers, and perceived usefulness
As the EMERGING TOOLS title indicates, we may discover new items that I haven’t previously considered. As a class, we’ll brainstorm and categorize a list, then negotiate which tools will be reviewed by which students.
First Week of the Unit
Early this week I will create a Google Spreadsheet and fill in a couple of example lines. Please contribute actively to this brainstorm list by Wednesday evening. Review any items on the brainstorm list that you’re unfamiliar with. Fill in your name in the reviewer list for tools you’d like to review personally (you may make this a group project if you want to work collaboratively with someone else–just fill in both names in the column). I would like you to review three different tools. You’ll want to begin tool reviews this week to ensure that you have plenty of time; reports aren’t due until next week.
- Fahy, P.J. (2008). Characteristics of interactive online learning media. In Anderson, T., & Elloumi, F. (Eds.). The theory and practice of online learning (2nd ed.) (pp. 167—199). Athabasca, AB, Canada: Athabasca University.
Reflection and Writing
As you review the emerging tools from our list, keep in mind which tools might be most useful for you given your specific circumstances and the student population you serve. As you’re reading and evaluating, remember these points:
- Fahy’s article asserts “…media research confirms that what the learner does with media is more important than what the teacher does.”
- Recall the information from the Fink text regarding active versus passive learning.
- Remember the Community of Inquiry model introduced in the orientation to this course.
How many of the proposed tools are contextualized primarily for teacher presentation (passive learning)? Which have potential for active learning or afford students opportunity to display a product of their learning? Which of the tools have potential for developing or enhancing the community of learners? Which features most actively support learner engagement in a community? Post your preliminary conclusions in your weekly writing.
Review the curriculum plans posted by your classmates last week and provide thoughtful feedback.