Thursday, November 29, 2007

R685 Week 15, Final Class Post

Week 15 Mobile, Wireless, and Ubiquitous Learning

We will be talking about mobile learning, the next frontier. I reflected this a bit in my Wikibook how the University of Western Florida has developed a HPT certification course by for the Coast Guard delivered via PDA. The PDA wireless and Bluetooth capabilities have been turned off for security purpose but anytime anywhere is becoming a reality. This is also what Bryan Alexander asked me in this blog. It definitely is the future.

I have not finished the readings for this week but will later in the weekend. However, I want to get this out so I do not hold my critical friend, Yichun, back from commenting. This week is my final blog post for R685 but, I have a feeling not my last blog post here.


Traxlar, John (2007, June). Defining, discussing and evaluating mobile learning: The moving finger writes and having writ…. International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning. 8(1). Retrieved July 2,2007, from or

Kadirire, James (2007, June). Instant messaging for creating interactive and collaborative m-learning environments. International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning. 8(1). Retrieved July 2,2007, from

Rekkedal, Torstein, & Dye, Aleksander (2007, June). Mobile distance learning with PDAs: Development and testing of pedagogical and system solutions supporting mobile distance learners. International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning. 8(1). Retrieved July 2,2007, from


Sideman, Jessica (2006, August 27). Wired for safety, late-night snacks. USA Today, Retrieved November 20, 2006, from

R685 Week 14 Reflection

Week 14 Alternate Reality Learning: Massive Gaming, Virtual Reality, and Simulations

This week Intellagirl was amongst our midst. I really did not know who Intellagirl really was but, I must say, she is a very creative and articulate educator that is pushing barriers. I signed up for Second Life and I did not know what to do, or who to talk to. Heck, I did not even want to talk. However, after seeing Intellagirl’s presentation I am starting to rethink Second Life, not as a social site but for education. It made me think about how this could be used in the Coast Guard and if the skills taught in Second Life could transfer to “First Life.” This could be huge in training personnel, especially, in marine safety and security. We are taught to inspect ships, conduct, investigations, respond to pollution. What if the personnel in San Francisco, after the ship hit the Bay Bridge recently, had been through a oil spill of the magnitude, in that spot before in Second Life? I am really starting to think.
I had read Dr. Bonk’s Massive Muti-player Online Gaming in the military article for my Wikibook and it is very interesting.

The second article I read was Galanxhi & Nah’s research on deception in Second Life. They looked into how people can deceive, how they chose there avatars, and anxiety level. The most interesting finding was, using IM brought less anxiety than using an avatar. People were more comfortable being someone or something else.

Lastly, was the article by Kurt Squire. I liked the article but he really “brought” the topic and borderline hostile to Instructional Designers. I agree that instructional design needs a jab but after he had ID down he kept kicking. It really turned me off instead of waking me up, like I think he intended. It is too bad because it was a wonderfully written article using ID terms and concepts to show how gaming fits into IST.

In the tidbit Oishi gives a nice introduction to Second life and its possibilities.

Bonk, C. J., & Dennen, V. P. (2005). Massive multiplayer online gaming: A research framework for military education and training. (Technical Report # 2005-1). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Defense (DUSD/R): Advanced Distributed Learning (ADL) Initiative. Retrieved September 26, 2006, from

Squire, Kurt (2005, February). Game-based learning: Present and future state of the field. The Masie Center. Retrieved July 4, 2007, from or

Galanxhi, Holtjona, & Fui-Hoon Nah, Fiona (2007, September). Deception in cyperspace: A comparison of text-only and avatar-supported medium. International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, 65(9), 770-783. Retrieved August 21, 2007, from


Oishi, Lindsay (2007, June 15). Surfing Second Life. From Technology and Learning (TechLearning). Retrieved July 12, 2007, from

Thursday, November 22, 2007

R685 Week 13 Reflection

Week 13, Wikis, Wikipedia, Wikibooks, and Collaborative Writing

This was an interesting week because Dr. Bonk came at us live from Maryland. I knew the concept of video conferencing but have never participated. You know what? It worked, it worked well and I was very impressed with both the video and audio quality. I also was impressed with the way he could pick up everyone in the room. Some people were no where near the microphone but Dr. Bonk could hear everyone. This is a more promising concept than I had realized. He then presented “Podcast, Wikis, and Blogs, Oh My” giving an entertaining and candid representation of what these mediums are and how they can assist education, in a scarecrow outfit. He had a screenshot from each of our blogs which really brought home how much additional content we are putting on the web as a collective. Podcasting was discussed at length but the main point was Dr. Bonk’s opinion on whether it is a web 2.0 technology. In his opinion it is not, it could be in the future but right now it is just a way to deliver content, I agree. Wikis are the main topic for this week. The following is the summary of the readings.

Bryant, Forte, and Bruckman, was the main article I analyzed this week. It was very interesting study on how wiki participants turn from novice to “Wikipedians.” They opened the article with what Wikipedia is and how it is almost identical to other encyclopedia websites that do not use a collaborative means of adding content. They used the concept of legitimate peripheral participation to describe how novices build a community and the building of a community of practice (CoP). What I found most interesting is the CoP principle is not just what one’s memberships in but everything, including ones neighborhood, friends, etc. Vygotsky’s Activity Theory was used in organizing the data. Nine participants were involved and the most significant find was that novices are end-users or minor editors on one site while Wikipedians see Wikipedia as a whole and are concerned with the accuracy and legitimacy of the entire site and the community it fosters.

Viegas, Wattenberg and Dave also looked at Wikipedia and how this community of openness can be viable with everyone and anyone editing. They analyzed the history flows of pages and created visualizations of these histories. Through these visualizations they were able to identify who changed the site, how long the site is or was, and show patterns. A good example was the site on chocolate, the visualization showed a zigzag pattern indicating an editing war. This type of information is interesting showing how each site comes to be, including the quarrels.

The final article for this week is Sanjjapanroj, Bonk, Lee, and Lin focused on Wikibooks. In this study they looked at novices and Wkkibookians. The novices were students from Indiana and Texas and the others were identified contributors to Wikibooks. The biggest find, in my opinion, was the demographics; 97% were male, 57% 25 or younger and 50% had not graduated from a 4 yr institution. In addition, the novice’s motivation was mostly to publish while the experts were to knowledge share.

The tidbits were brief articles for Campus technology. MIT launched “The Center of Wiki Intelligence” looking at how collaboration works in wiki sites. In line with this MIT and Wharton are collaborating a Wikibook titled, “We are Smarter than Me” where thousands are called upon to produce a Wikibook. Finally, Stanford opened its own Wiki site that is specific to Stanford.

Bryant, S. L., Forte, A., & Bruckman, A. (2005). Becoming Wikipedian: Transformation of participation in a collaborative online encyclopedia. In M. Pendergast, K. Schmidt, G. Mark, and M. Acherman (Eds.); Proceedings of the 2005 International ACM SIGGROUP Conference on Supporting Group Work, GROUP 2005, Sanibel Island, FL, November 6-9, pp. 1-10. Retrieved February 7, 2007, from

ViƩgas, F. B., Wattenberg, M., & Dave, K. (2004). Studying cooperation and conflict between authors with history flow visualizations. In E. Dykstra-Erickson & M. Tscheligi (Eds.), Proceedings from ACM CHI 2004 Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp. 575-582). Vienna, Austria. Retrieved February 3, 2007, from

Sajjapanroj, S., Bonk, C. J., Lee, M., & Lin, M.-F. G. (2007, April). The challenges and successes of Wikibookian experts and Wikibook novices: Classroom and community perspectives. Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association, Chicago, IL. See


a. Campus Technology (2006a, October 10). News Update: MIT launches center for Collective (Wiki) intelligence. Campus Technology. Retrieved February 2, 2007, from
b. Campus Technology (2006b, October 10). News Update: Stanford debuts Wiki of all things Stanford. Campus Technology. Retrieved February 2, 2007, from Campus Technology (2007, January 30). News Update: MIT, Wharton to publish collaborative textbook by Wiki. Campus Technology. Retrieved February 2, 2007, from

R685 Week 12 Reflection

Week 12. Podcasting, Coursecasting, and Online Language Learning

This week we had a guest speaker Dr. Valerie O'Loughlin who is an Associate Professor of Anatomy and Cell Biology. She came to demonstrate her Human Embryology Animations which were very good. However, she was not there to teach the lesson she was there to ask for help. There are assessment issues with the sites and she wants to better to evaluate how her sites are affecting learning. The tools she has now are mediocre at most. I think this is the divide I was talking about in my previous post and what Dr. Bonk was saying, other fields are asking for out assistance and we should be jumping on the chance. The web is for learning and, of course, education should lead the way. Hey other field thinks so too, that is why they ask. However, if we do not assist they will 1) figure it out themselves, or 2) ask someone in computer science or informatics that does not have the background to do insightful evaluation (sorry but it is true). My evaluation class is next semester maybe we can help.

The best article of the week was the whitepaper by Ashley Deal. It was an interesting article talking about how podcasting is being used to record lectures. I think the article is right that it “extends education rather than assists learning.” More people are able to participate or review but do not necessarily assist in learning or collaboration. This was affirmed by Cara Lanes article which I think was a mandated review because she even admitted she did not have a proper sample size. However, what was interesting was there was a concern kids would skip class more if they knew it was being podcasted but there was not evidence. Also, people listen to podcasts mostly on their computer they do not download them to the player taking one of the prime selling points out of the equation.

Judith Boettcher’s article discussed how universities are using podcasts and mp3 players to assist in the school. Finally, but definitely not least is Scott Carlson who decided to lifelog by recording everything, he even wore a sign around his neck stating that he was recording. The key point is “what’s the point” reviewing them in the future could be nostalgic but that’s about it. I say get rid of them Mr. Carlson.

The tidbit asks; where is the podcasting revolution? Good question Ms. Holahan.

Deal, Ashley (2007, June). Podcasting. A Teaching With Technology White Paper. Educause. Retrieved July 5, 2007, from

Carlson, Scott (2007, February 9). On the record, all the time: Researchers digitally capture the daily flow of life. Should they? Chronicle of Higher Education, Retrieved July 4, 2007, from

Boettcher, Judith (2007, July). iPod stands for: Absorb, engage, and matter! Campus Technology, Retrieved July 4, 2007, from

Lane, Cara (2006). UW podcasting: Evalution of Year One. Retrieved July 10, 2007, from


Holahan, Catherine (2006, November). What podcasting revolution? Business Week. Retrieved July 4, 2007, from

Monday, November 5, 2007

R685 Week 11 Reflection

Week 11, Electronic Motivation, Collaboration, and Communities of Learning/Inquiry

I AM MAD AS HELL AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE! This week was a rant, a rant by Dr. Bonk to vent frustration on the use, or lack of use, of new technological tools in education. He presented that all these things are happening and education is standing “flat footed” (that is my take). The first sentence is from the movie The Network which is based on how television is infiltrating our lives. Dr. Bonk argues one could superimpose “the tube” with “the web” and you will have today’s argument. Hmmmm interesting. My take? As I have always stated the web is a tool…

This weeks readings discuss how to or what is needed to build a “sense of community” in distance learning. After reading about online learning for the last 11 weeks this has surfaced to be the factor in both distance dropouts and the argument against distance learning. However, each of these studies show that a community can be built through text. Rovai, speaks of Spirit, Trust, Interaction, and the Common Expectation to learn. Garrison, Anderson, & Archer talk about critical inquiry and the components of; cognitive presence, social presence, and teaching presence. Kimble, Li, and Barlow key point is about social and active trust. Finally but definitely not least, Ruth Brown discussed community.

Ruth Brown had the best reading of the week as she brought in new ideas. The main idea was there is three levels of community; on-line acquaintances, community conferment, and camaraderie. What griped me was the “conferment.” Conferment was defined as “securing a community membership card” and it was obtained by participating in “a long, thoughtful, threaded discussion of importance to all.” It reminded me of the street advice I was given if I ever went to prison (if you do not know what I mean ask someone) if I was ever going to survive. That is what I thought of as I read about conferment; it is a right of passage, a way to stand out so no one doubts your abilities. I practiced this in one of my online classes this summer without knowing it. I had some success in another online class and obtained a bit of confidence on how this “online” thing worked. I read the articles and developed some long profound “off the wall” statement and pasted it in the thread. Immediate trust was built with my classmates and the instructor; keep it up with timely posts and you’re on your way to a successful online career. This is a lot easier than “getting to know” everyone online. I had never thought about until this week but, in my experience, I think it is true. Good article Dr. Brown

The tidbits are group and chat (text and voice) areas where communities can be built, I belong to both.

Alfred Rovai (2002, April). Building Sense of Community at a Distance. International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, Retrieved August 21, 2007, from

Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: Computer conferencing in higher education. The Internet and Higher Education, 2(2-3), 87-105. Retrieved July 5, 2007, from (also see Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., Archer, W. and Rourke, L. (2004). Research into Online Communities of Inquiry. Retrieved March 8 , 2007, from

Ruth Brown (2001). Process of Community-Building in Distance Learning Classes. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, Volume 5, Issue 2.

Chris Kimble, Feng Li, & Alexis Barlow (2000). Effective Virtual Teams through Communities of Practice. Management Science: Theory, Method, and Practice. and (abstract)


a. Google Groups:;
b. Skype:

Saturday, October 27, 2007

R685 Week 10 Reflection

Week 10, Online Interactivity, Engagement, and Social Presence

Last week in class we started to present content on the web supporting web 2.0. Everyone who is being graded needs to present YouTube videos or some web application. We did not get to mine so I will be doing two (see last weeks tidbits) this week. We are moving to how the web can be used in learning. Dr. Bonk brought up an interesting point how engineers want to collaborate with education professionals to deliver content over the web. This is the same with librarians. Why? Because, besides porn, that is what the web is tailored for. To deliver INFORMATION so others may KNOW or LEARN. What does this spell? E D U C A T I O N. Others see it why not education? Hey, I think we need to hitch our wagon to these partners because sooner or later they are just going to do it themselves…

For this week’s readings, Nora Jones kicks it off with a study of 5 online courses from Wales. The first thing I found interesting is Wales is “Objective One” as determined by the EU. This means they receive extra funding, I had no idea Wales would fall anywhere in any depressed category but now I know. I need to Google Wales economics to get a quick tutorial sometime. Anyway, they utilized Gilly Salmon’s five step model used in the Open University in the UK. To make a long story short Ms. Jones found the social interaction of an online class was very important and should be first to enable cohesiveness. Although it was the 2nd Step in Salmon’s scale after “setting up system…” and “welcoming…” Salmon never gave how to socially interact. These courses chose to have a F2F meeting first then set up the system. The study only validates her hypothesis (although it was not framed as such). In my opinion, this article started out evaluating online classes and ended up evaluating Gilly Salmon.

Dr. Bonk said to read this article to “get” what this upcoming week was about and he was right. Ms. Swan has written a nice over view in her “Learning Effectiveness Online…” I also think that Dr. Bonk likes her writing is because she uses the word “stuff.” Anyway, she discusses how F2F and distance learning has proven to be “no significant differences” but argues there are differences and online learning is different. The key of the article was her call to personalization, as it was the “… key to innovation in distance learning.” She then goes into interaction with instructors, interaction with classmates, and learner interface interaction. These were talked about in the other articles I am going to discuss below but she made it very interesting by giving examples from a diverse range of online institutions. She also sums it up very well in a 3 page table that spells out the findings and the implications of each.

I do not know why everyone wants to study MBA classes but that seems or seemed to be the hot research area around 2005. Bude Su along with Dr. Bonk put out another article in the long term study of online learning effectiveness in distance MBA classes. I have read a few of these already but this is the first time I grasped the idea of “vicarious interaction.” I also liked how this article defined interaction as “process oriented” and interactivity as “feature oriented. I never thought about the difference of the two and am guilty of using them interchangeably. Well, no more! The other MBA study used a real-time case meaning a problem was presented and the students made a decision and the business went with it. It was an evolving problem solving case that differed with decisions, just like the real world. In the end students liked it and learned a lot but as opposed to the numbers the comments were not as reassuring.

The tidbit was e-conferencing instruction. It discussed what was out there beyond a basic CMS. Speaking of e-conferencing, I just used Connect (old Breeze) in one of my other classes and it sucked did not work well. Long way to go boys and girls…

Jones, N. (2005). The development of socialization in an on-line learning environment. The Journal of Interactive Online Learning, 3(3),

Su, B., Bonk, C. J., Magjuka, R., Liu, X., Lee, S. H. (2005, summer). The importance of interaction in web-based education: A program-level case study of online MBA courses. Journal of Interactive Online Learning, 4(1). and

Swan, K. (2003). Learning effectiveness online: What the research tell us. In J. Bourne, & J. C. Moore (Eds.). Elements of quality online education, Practice and direction. Sloan Center for Online Education, 13-45.

Theroux, James, Carpenter, Cari, & Kilbane, Claire. (2004). Experimental online case study for a breakthrough in student engagement: Focus group results. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 8(3), retrieved July 1, 2007, from

Shi, Shufang, & Morrow, Blaine Victor (2006). E-conferencing for instruction: What works? Educause Quarterly, 29(4), pp. 22-30. Retrieved July 10, 2007, from

Sunday, October 21, 2007

R685 Week 9 Reflection

Week 9 Course Management 1.0 in a Web 2.0 and Participatory e-Learning World

This week is about turning the traditional Course Management System on its head. The issue from the entire articles this week is that the CMS we know (and many love and hate) is now obsolete. Weigel summed up all the articles when he states; “… many educators and administrators are locked into a “classroom on steroids” model of e-learning that is more preoccupied with the categories of accessibility and convenience than pedagogical effectiveness and skill development.” Meaning the CMS is more for the facilitator than the students. In a web 2.0 realm not only is it NOT necessary the instructor try to emulate a classroom setting but is flat out wrong.

Mr. Downes comes in again with an opinion (surprise) but calls the CMS a learning management system and defines as the same (Blackboard, Web CT) but they are in fact different. A CMS manages a course while a LMS is a comprehensive approach to managing learning which a CMS would be a part. He starts with discussing learning objects then moves to the CMS. He explains Learning objects are connected to computer based delivery systems (CBT) and can be used as course building blocks but by connecting LO’s to CBT he has in essence connected LO to behaviorism. I agree with Weigel that the current CMS is steeping in behaviorism but am having a difficult time with the LO being thrown in there, something I need to think about more. Mr. Downes brought in again the “digital native,” blogging, and wikis while defining web 2.0 and those who use it, nothing new from him. However, he brought up George Siemen’s connectivism and Rushkoff’s Cyberia then segued to a discussion of an “open society.” I think he really likes this connectivism thing; I do not (as a learning theory).

Bryan Alexander does a great job of giving a brief history and current update of web 2.0 by discussing specific applications. He takes the reader from the beginning (1960’s) to the start of social bookmarking with and the rapid explanation of some of the applications. He then discusses how these can be used in the classroom including the use of RSS feeds and collaboration sites.

John Thompson gives the same background of web 2.0. He like the others call on educators to embrace this technology and not shun it as the students will be expecting it. He refers to Alexander’s article when discussing precedents and the future but does not go as in depth. He also brings in Tufts mapping technology, Penn State’s texting program, and Duke’s iPod program. For the future he said that institutions need to transform to avoid the “Starbucks Effect” (Hammonds, 2006) where a better business model and product will take away market share. This is prevalent in the University of Phoenix’s takeover of the non-traditional student. They are the largest accredited university in the US because they catered to a large group of the population who were largely ignored by academia unless the student wanted to conform. I am an alum from UOP and they offered exactly what I needed while I was working, an accredited curriculum, a set class schedule, convenient times, and a good education. I did not need a student union, football team, or a sprawling campus. However, I paid for it, UOP is very expensive…

Wiegel, V. (2005). From course management to curriculum capabilities: A capabilities approach for the next-generation CMS. EDUCAUSE Review, 40(3), 54-67. Retrieved August 22, 2006, from

Downes, Stephen (2005, October). E-learning 2.0. E-Learn Magazine. Retrieved October 26, 2006, from

Alexander, Bryan (2006, March/April). Web 2.0: A new wave of innovation for teaching and learning? Educause Review, 41(2), 32-44. Retrieved July 9, 2007, from

See Table: Brown, Malcolm (2007, March/April). Mashing up the once and future CMS. Educause Review, 42(2), 8-9. Retrieved July 9, 2007, from

Thompson, John (2007, April/May). Is education 1.0 ready for Web 2.0 students? Innovate Journal of Online Education, 3(4), Retrieved July 4, 2007, from

Tidbits: Class Presentation
Wikis in plain English:
Did you know; Shift Happens; globalization; information age: