Professional Reflection

The goal of my blog ‘Lifelong Learning: Technology Tools of Online Learning’, was to not only showcase technology tools to support learning for novices and beginners, but also showcase various online technology tools to individuals that may be leery of using technology in learning environments. My blog is a guide (also available in a PDF format) showcasing various online technologies that can be used as learning tools. My blog’s technology guide for distance and digital learning tools includes the following sections, 1) Web 3.0 technologies for learning; 2) Social media and collaborative learning tools; 3) mobile learning; and 4) Online gaming for learning.

After researching the various technology tools that support learning, I believe online gaming tools will be the most effective learning tools in my professional life. As mentioned in my technology guide, Gamification is the process of adding interactive game playing experiences through animations and simulations to motivate learners to learn. In my professional life, I have the opportunity to help develop online education and training for employees in specific industries. Adding interactive animations and simulations into online training courses provides employees with the ability to perform numerous operational activities similar to what they would operate in real scenarios. These types of animations and simulations are so real and true to life experiences that employees are fully engaged and able to experiment without being put in an unsafe environment. In addition, employees can experiment much more with online gaming learning tools than they could in the past using actual equipment without personal risks or safety being a factor.

In my experience, I have found that adding Gamification into online learning environments increases the engagement level with learners. I find it very interesting that playing games can signal the release of dopamine in learners’ brains when they achieve a goal, whether they’re playing a learning game or something for fun outside of class room environment (Educatorstechnology, 2016). According to Educatorstechnology (2016), with higher levels of dopamine, the brain tends to function better especially in remembering information. This type of online learning technology tool, not only helps learners’ interact with learning, but it is motivational as well.

My goals related to sharing my technology guide for distance and digital learning tools are to assist individuals in learning about various technology tools that can support learning. I believe that at the heart of learning is sharing information. I feel it is important to share my guide with others, especially those that are new to technology because it can feel overwhelming to learn new technologies. Information supports understanding. Having a better understanding of topics supports the ability to make better decisions and accomplish goals. Overall, my goal is to support learner’s in their ability to learn, grow and flourish.

Reference:

Educatorstechnology. (2016). An Interesting Infographic on The Relationship Between Games and Learning. Retrieved from: https://www.educatorstechnology.com/2016/06/an-interesting-infographic-on.html

Guide for Online Gaming Learning Tools

This blog is part of my technology guide for distance and digital learning tools. This guide contains information on various technology tools that can support providing effective instruction. Below is information on online gaming learning tools that can be used to support effective learning and instruction.

Engaging learners in the learning process is important. When learners are engaged they have an increased attention and focus, practice higher-level critical thinking skills and have meaningful learning experiences (Center for Teaching and Learning, n.d.) It is no surprise that there is a strong correlation between student engagement and student achievement and when students are inattentive, withdrawn, and disengaged, they have poorer academic performance when compared to engaged students (Dyer, 2015). To support having engaged learners, using Gamification in instruction can increase engagement with learners (Roland, 2016).

Gamification can be described as transforming or mechanizing a system to be approached in a game-like or playful manner (Alabbasi, 2017). Video games are popular with 67 percent of Millennials, and 58 percent of Generation Xers indicate they play video games (Duran, 2017). With so many adults using video games, Gamification is an approach to learning that makes sense. Below are a few examples of online gaming learning tools that can be used outside of the classroom to support engaging learners in various topics.

Online Gaming for English Learners

Virtual Immersive Education World (VIEW) is a cloud-based 3D, educational, online gaming platform that simulates real-world learning environments (VIEW, n.d.). VIEW created an online game, FluentWorlds, which provides a language learning virtual reality platform and engages learners with various ability levels from beginner to advanced through the use of a 3D character that embarks on new adventures, such as New York’s Central Park or Las Vegas (FluentWorlds, n.d.). FluentWorlds Mobile is available to use with a mobile device or FluentWorlds Academy can be accessed online. Individuals can download FluentWorlds mobile app from the app store to use on a phone or tablet and it is available for free or $3.99 per month for a premium subscription. In addition, individuals can sign up for FluentWorlds Academy in a small group class setting or a private class from $39 to $59 per class (FluentWorlds, n.d).

Online Gaming for Financial Literacy

It is important for individuals to have an understanding about money management skills and financial literacy. The FutureSmart free mobile app was developed by MassMutual, a life insurance company, for youth to learn about various financial decisions through gaming (MassMutual, 2017). According to MassMutual (2017) the app provides gaming opportunities to learn about various financial experiences, such as saving, paying for higher education, retirement, and opening and monitoring bank accounts.  Once an avatar is chosen, the individual avatar goes on a journey as a teenager and moves through adulthood making various financial decisions over the course on one’s life (MassMutual, 2017). Individuals can download the FutureSmart mobile app from the app store to use on a phone or tablet.

Online Gaming for Brain Training

There are lots of online gaming options that support training the brain. Elevate is an online brain training mobile app designed to improve focus, speaking abilities, processing speed and memory (App Compendium, 2015). Apple chose Elevate as the best iPhone app of 2014 (Tweedie, 2014). According to Tweedie (2014), Elevate has 25 mini cognitive games, daily challenges and a little quiz that acts as a measurement to garner a general idea of your intelligence. Individuals can download the Elevate mobile app for free from the app store to use on a phone or tablet, but it costs $39.99 for a yearly subscription.

 References

Alabbasi, D. (2017). Exploring graduate students’ perspectives towards using gamification techniques in online learning. Online Journal of Distance Education (TOJDE), 18(3), 180-196.

Center for Teaching and Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.washington.edu/teaching/teaching-resources/engaging-students-in-learning/

Duran, H. (2017). How Different Generations Play Video Games, From Platforms To Genres. Retrieved from:

Dyer, K. (2015). Research Proof Points – Better Student Engagement Improves Student Learning. Retrieved from: https://www.nwea.org/blog/2015/research-proof-points-better-student-engagement-improves-student-learning/

FluentWorlds. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.fluentworlds.com/#prettyPhoto

Roland, J. (2016). Does Gamification Education Really Improve Learning? Retrieved from: https://insights.samsung.com/2016/07/19/does-gamification-education-really-improve-learning/

MassMutual. (2017). Retrieved from: https://www.massmutual.com/about-us/news-and-press-releases/press-releases/2017/03/27/17/47/massmutual-foundation-expands-reach-of-financial-ed-program-with-free-app

Tweedie, S. (2014). Meet Elevate, Apple’s Pick For Best iPhone App Of The Year. Retrieved from: http://www.businessinsider.com/elevate-wins-best-iphone-app-year-2014-2014-12

VIEW. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.3d-view.com/#1450321850402-6265ab87-4a3a

Guide for Mobile Learning Tools

This blog is part of my technology guide for distance and digital learning tools. This guide contains information on various technology tools that can support providing effective instruction.  There is a myriad of mobile learning tools to support lifelong learning. Below is information on three specific mobile learning tools that can be used to support effective learning and instruction.

Evernote

Evernote is a mobile app designed to capture information, organize the information and take notes (Evernote, n.d.). According to Evernote (n.d.), the Evernote app can not only be used to gather information and take notes, but it can enhance your notes by adding links, images and audio recordings into an organized, digital notebook or binder. According the Evernote Help & Learning, (n.d.), you can scan and search hand written notes for specific information based on a character-recognition process that makes handwritten notes searchable. Evernote keeps all your notes in the cloud, however the app provides the ability to access and edit your notes and information offline and when re-connected to the internet, the app will update any of the edits that were made (Evernote Help & Learning, n.d.).

Evernote supports effective instruction and the 21st century learning skill of critical thinking by building research skills through its ability to archive information and allow access to archived information from various devices, including mobile devices (Gordon, 2013). According to Gordon (2013), all of the information stored in Evernote can be accessed, and used as a default bookmark or webclip, allowing your information to be indexed and searchable. When learning about a specific subject, individuals can set up notebooks to organize information based on certain topics about the subject regardless of whether the information comes from notes, audio recordings or information from the internet. This mobile-friendly tool can be used in both a formal and an informal setting and utilized for capturing information on a specific topic, lesson or information on a personal interest.

Evernote offers a free basic plan or upgraded plans that cost $39.99 per year, $69.99 per year or $14.99 per month (Evernote, n.d.). Evernote requires individuals to create an account, which is created by either sign-in with a Google account or by typing in an email address and a password. To sign-up for Evernote go to: https://www.evernote.com/Registration.action

Open Textbook Library

Open Textbook Library provides an online catalog of free, peer-reviewed, openly-licensed textbooks that are mobile-friendly (Open Textbook Library, n.d.).  According to Open Textbook Library there are textbooks that have been reviewed by faculty from colleges and universities categorized into 14 main subjects, such as, business, education, humanities, math, science and several sub categories within the main subjects where individuals have online access to open-sourced textbooks. The authors and publishers of these textbooks have given permission to use them based on an open license.

According to the Partnership for 21st Century Learning (n.d.), information, media and technology literacy skills are necessary for students to succeed in work, life and citizenship. It is important for individuals to be comfortable using digital technology skills as a tool to research, evaluate and communicate information (Partnership for 21st Century Learning, n.d.). With more textbooks being offered online, digitally and in a mobile-friendly format, individuals can not only access various authored information from an online textbook, but using textbooks online supports building various technology skills, such as, searching for information, managing font sizes, highlighting and saving information and navigation skills.

Utilizing textbooks online mainly supports a formal educational setting. Textbooks are often associated with a type of formal classroom or training as supplemental information on a specific subject. There are many benefits to using online textbooks, such as decrease cost. In an effort to decrease the cost of textbooks, Open Textbook Library offers free web-based textbooks to support effective instruction in today’s 21st century. Also, technology-based instruction can reduce the time individuals take to understand a learning objective by 30-80 percent (Federal Communications Commission, 2012).

When searching open online textbooks on Google, 6,540,000 results emerge. However, Open Textbook Library is listed first. Its website (http://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/ ) is easy to use, providing three menu items on the top right; Browse subjects, Our Textbooks and About Us. After browsing through various subjects, reading reviews and learning who published the textbook, individuals can select a textbook by clicking on ‘read more’ and either read the book online or choose a different format for reading the textbook, such as, PDF, Kindle, E-Pub or MOBI (Open Textbook Library, n.d.).

Coursera

Coursera is a website and app that provides mobile-friendly, massive open online courses (MOOC’s), other online courses, certificates and degrees (Coursera, n.d.). Coursera was founded in 2012 by Stanford University computer science professors, Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller based on their experiences with starting a MOOC in 2011 (Coursera Leadership, n.d.). Coursera’s vision is based on a world where individuals can transform their lives by accessing the world’s best learning experience through having access to online courses taught by top instructors from top educational institutions (Coursera, n.d.).

Coursera has more than 30 million registered users and 2,700 active courses (Shah, 2018) and utilizing Coursera can not only support gaining 21st century technology skills, but can support gaining important life and career skills. According to Shah (2018), Coursera offers more than 250 MOOC specializations aligned to a credential, the most of any MOOC provider, and plans to launch 15 to 20 degrees by 2019. Coursera supports 21st century learning goals, such as, developing specific content knowledge and competencies to navigate complex life and work environments (Partnership for 21st Century Learning, n.d.). Gaining additional education can lead to earning credentials and degrees, which can support earning higher salary, lowering the risk of unemployment and maximizing job satisfaction (Doyle, 2018).

Coursera supports both informal and formal learning. Coursera offers close to 2,000 free online courses in various subjects in six different languages (Coursera, n.d.). Whether an individual has an interest in learning more about a specific subject and takes a class to support their interest or enrolls in a specialization to obtain a credential, Coursera has many options.

To get started with Coursera, an individual must first review and research the courses available within its various subjects. Once a course has been selected, it is important to review the syllabus, learn about the instructor(s), determine if there is a charge for the course and look at the start date and how long the class is scheduled. Each course has menu buttons to learn an overview of the course; access the syllabus; FAQs; the creators of the course; and course ratings and reviews. To enroll in a class, you must sign-up through a Facebook account or enter a name, email address and a password. To review all of Coursera’s online courses, click on: https://www.coursera.org/

References

Coursera. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://about.coursera.org/

Coursera Leadership. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://about.coursera.org/leadership

Doyle, A. (2018). How much is a College Degree Worth? Retrieved from: https://www.thebalance.com/how-much-is-a-college-degree-worth-2059798

Evernote (n.d.). Retrieved from:  https://evernote.com/

Evernote Help & Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://help.evernote.com/hc/en-us/articles/115015781207-Evernote-for-Productivity-On-the-go

Federal Communications Commission. (2012). Digital Textbook Playbook. Retrieved from: http://www.fcc.gov

Gordon, W. (2013). Retrieved from: https://lifehacker.com/5989980/ive-been-using-evernote-all-wrong-heres-why-its-actually-amazing

Open Textbook Library. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/About.aspx

Partnership for 21st Century Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved from: http://www.p21.org/storage/documents/docs/P21_framework_0816.pdf

Shah, D. (2018). By the numbers: MOOCS in 2017. Retrieved from: https://www.class-central.com/report/mooc-stats-2017/

 

Guide for Three Technology Social Media & Collaborative Learning Tools

This blog is part of my technology guide for distance and digital learning tools. This guide contains information on various technology tools that can support providing effective instruction.  It’s important to consider using social media with today’s adult learners. Social media’s heightened popularity has grown from only five percent of American adults using social media in 2005, to 69 percent of adults using social media in 2018 (Pew Research Center, 2018). Below are descriptions of three social media and collaborative learning tools that can be used to support effective learning and instruction.

Facebook

Facebook is a social media tools that can support effective learning and instruction. Facebook is a very popular social medium technology tool. According to the Pew Research Center (2018), Facebook is the highest utilized social media site visited on a daily basis by adults with Instagram and Pinterest ranked as second and third. According to Nation (2018), Facebook was created by Mark Zuckerberg and Edward Saverin in 2004 as a school-based social network at Harvard University and opened to the public as a social networking tool in 2006.

Facebook’s social networking website and service allows users to post comments, share photographs and link to news or other interesting content on the Web, play games, chat live, and stream live video. (Nations, 2018).  Facebook can support collaboration and provide a platform for individuals to work together on a common goal. In fact, some researchers agree that technology tools, such as Facebook, play a positive role in enhancing the performance of learners and encouraging active collaborative learning (Al-Rahmi & Zeki, 2017).

One example of how Facebook can be used to achieve a 21st century learning goal is its ability to increase collaboration. An important 21st century skill students must possess is the ability to collaborate in both physical and virtual spaces (Watanabe-Crockett, 2016). Facebook, through the online social environment, provides learners the ability to efficiently communicate with their peers to solve problems or organize social events in a collaborative way (Al-Rahmi & Zeki, 2017).

One strategy for integrating Facebook in an informal or formal learning setting is to create a Facebook group. A Facebook group can be set up with select members and therefore private and not public and only those who have been invited to the group can see the content and information shared within it. Instructors and teachers can share links to information and articles, videos and images, which can support using visual and auditory tool to help learners better understand the topic. Additionally, learners can freely commit within the Facebook group without concern about public comment.

Once you have a Facebook account www.facebook.com, you can create a Facebook group. Find ‘add group’ from your Facebook home page and go to the ‘groups’ section on the left side of the menu. Click ‘create new group’, name your group, and add members and click create. Below are a few sources for learning more about Facebook and Facebook Groups:

TED

Technology, entertainment and design (TED), also referred to as TED Talks is an internet video platform providing a clearinghouse of free knowledge in the form of videos (TED, n.d.) According to TED (n.d.), TED began in 1984 as a conference where people from various disciplines shared their knowledge on a multitude of subjects. TED Talks provides engaging, charismatic speakers whose talks expose new ideas that are supported by evidence and relevant to a broad international audience (Rouse, 2014).

TED can be used for effective instruction in a formal or informal setting through diving deeper to learn about a specific topic. Listening and watching a charismatic speaker talk about a subject helps a learner better understand through encouraging ideas, communication and debate (Cucinotta, 2014). Through TED’s support of learning, TED developed TED-Ed. TEDEd is a youth and education initiative to spark and celebrate the ideas of teachers and students around the world (TEDEd, n.d.). According to TEDEd (n.d.), not only can teachers have access to a library of videos, but teachers can create interactive lessons through adding questions, discussion prompts and additional resources to a TEDEd video.

Developing critical thinking skills is an important 21st century learning goal. The ability to think analytically, which includes proficiency with comparing, contrasting, evaluating, synthesizing, and applying without instruction or supervision are individual attributes much sought after by employers (Watanabe-Crockett, 2016). TED videos can be used to encourage students to think and think critically. When TED is leveraged in a lesson, instructors and teachers can prepare discussion questions aligned to get students thinking and prepared for class through helping to grasp topics they might not fully understand, think critically about how they think about the world, and discuss other big ideas alongside their own (Cucinotta, 2014).

Over 2,700 TED Talks are available at www.TED.com and it is easy to search various topics and speakers. TED Talks can range from six to 18 minutes and are available in close to 40 different languages. TEDEd is available at www.ed.ted.com and lessons are easy to search by subject. In addition, instructors and teachers can create a lesson https://ed.ted.com/videos using a TED video. Below are a few sources for learning more about TED and TEDEd:

Google Docs

Google Docs is a technology tool that can be used for collaborative learning. Google Docs is a free web-based application offered by Google where documents and spreadsheets can be created, edited and stored online (G Suite Learning Center, n.d.)  According to Rouse (2015), Google Docs can be accessed via the Internet and web browser and is compatible with most presentation software and word processor applications. Google Docs supports collaborative projects due to multiple authors being able to work together in real time on a specific document (Rouse, 2015).

The tool can be used in many ways to support effective instruction both in a formal and informal setting. One of the collaborative functions is the tool, Suggesting Mode. This tool allows users to ‘suggest’ changes in the document without actually making changes and the author of the document can approve or disapprove the suggested change (Carrell, 2017).  In addition to providing opportunities for collaborative writing assignments, it provides various tools to support creating specific types of documents. Google Docs has an extensive template gallery that supports not having to create various documents from scratch, a research tool called Explore, that can be used for referencing information, including providing citations in various formats and it supports voice typing through your computer’s built in microphone once you click on the microphone, it will enable the voice recognition and it will type what you say (Carrell, 2017).

Not only does Google Docs support the important 21st century learning goal, collaboration, it also supports problem solving. It can act as a foundation to solve complex problems in real time. Problem solving is a critical 21st century learning goal and society needs individuals who can devise effective solutions to real-world problems (Cucinotta, 2014).  Google Docs’ ability to be a collaborating tool used in real-time lends to individuals proactively solving problems together.

A Google account is required to use Google Docs. Through www.google.com an account can be created and then when you sign into your Google account, you can access the Google Docs portion of Google by clicking on the top right side small squares for a dropdown of various Google apps, including Docs. Once into Google Docs, on the top left side of the screen, click on main menu and there are various options for documents, sheets or slides. Google provides a learning center for each of their products. To learn more about how to use Google Docs, click on https://gsuite.google.com/learning-center/products/docs/#!/or https://www.google.com/docs/about/ 

References

Al-Rahmi, W. & Zeki, A. (2017). A model of using social media for collaborative learning to enhance learners’ performance on learning. Journal of King Saud University, 29(4), 526-535.

Carrell, J. (2017). 10 awesome and surprising ways you can use google docs in the classroom. Retrieved from: https://www.weareteachers.com/awesome-and-surprising-ways-you-can-use-google-docs/

Cucinotta, O. (2014). How teachers can best use TED Talks in class, from the perspective of a student. Retrieved from: https://blog.ted.com/how-teachers-can-best-use-ted-talks-in-class-from-the-perspective-of-a-student/

G Suite Learning Center. (n.d.). Get started with Docs. Retrieved from: https://gsuite.google.com/learning-center/products/docs/get-started/#!/

Nations, D. (2018).  What is Facebook? Retrieved from: https://www.lifewire.com/what-is-facebook-3486391

Pew Research Center. (2018). Social media fact sheet. Retrieved from: http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheet/social-media/

Rouse, M. (2014). TED Talk. Retrieved from: http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/TED-talk

Rouse, M. (2015). Google Docs. Retrieved from: http://whatis.techtarget.com/definition/Google-Docs

TED. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.ted.com/about/our-organization

TEDEd. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://ed.ted.com/about

Watanabe-Crockett, L. (2016). The Critical 21st Century Skills Every Student Needs and Why. Retrieved from: https://globaldigitalcitizen.org/21st-century-skills-every-student-needs

Guide for Three Web 3.0 Technologies for Learning

This blog is part of my technology guide for distance and digital learning tools. This guide will contain information on various technology tools that can support providing effective instruction.  Below are descriptions of three technology tools that can be used to support effective learning and instruction.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is a social media site that was created in 2002 for professional networking with companies, employers and job seekers (LinkedIn Newsroom, n.d.). According to LinkedIn Newsroom (n.d.), it provides access for its users, both individuals and employers to create profiles that can be used to connect to each other in an online social network to support creating professional relationships. LinkedIn also supports 21st century learning due to its ability to showcase the latest information from influential leaders in their respective fields. It features global thought leaders who share their insights through articles and posts and encourages LinkedIn members to follow these influencers to keep abreast and share their own perspectives (LinkedIn Influencer, n.d.)

In 2016, LinkedIn launched LinkedIn Learning, an online learning platform of 10,000 digital, online courses covering subjects such as, business, creative and technical topics (Roslansky, 2016). Employers can utilize LinkedIn Learning for their employees to boost knowledge and learn new skills. There is a cost for companies to utilize LinkedIn Learning, however the tool supports developing learning strategies through its ability to personalize course and content recommendations based on job role and experience level (LinkedIn Learning, n.d.). LinkedIn Learning is an online tool for employers and companies. There is a fee to have access to all of the online courses and in order use the tool, a company must connect with their specialists to become a customer.

To create a LinkedIn Account, go to www.linkedin.com and fill out this form and agree to their user agreement by clicking Join now.

BlueJeans

BlueJeans is a cloud-based video conferencing tool that enables people to connect with each other any time, any place, and from any device (About BlueJeans network, n.d.). BlueJeans provides a digital platform that not only provides video conferencing, but also provides a platform for teleconferences, recording meetings and conversations, screen and content sharing while in a meeting (BlueJeans, n.d.). One way this tool supports 21st century learning is its ability to reinforce collaboration and engagement of all participants. Not only does it provide the ability to hear everyone in a meeting or classroom through its video capabilities, you can see everyone as well.

Employers and instructors can develop strategies to utilize BlueJeans as a way to connect and collaborate virtually with employees located in different locations across the globe. BlueJeans provides live streaming to enable employers to have real-time meetings and trainings (BlueJeans, n.d.). Participants can collaborate through speaking, using a chat function or sharing content. BlueJeans also allows potential customers to try out the service for free, however there is a fee for service based on whether the tool is for individual use, a mid-size business or a large company. The tool requires internet connection and provides instructions on getting started, as well as several tutorials to learn how to best maximize its capabilities (BlueJeans, n.d.).

To get started using BlueJeans, visit www.bluejeans.com and chose either  administrator or user; access your account by logging in; schedule a meeting using your calendar platform; start your meeting; and join from a computer, conference room or mobile phone. Below are images of how to get started using BlueJeans.

YouTube

YouTube is an online, video sharing website. YouTube provides access for users to upload and search and view videos, as well as, create a personal YouTube channel, comment on videos, subscribe to other users videos and create playlists of specific videos (Webwise, n.d.). According to Fortuneloards (2018), there are a total of 1,300,000,000 people who use YouTube and almost 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every day. YouTube is a free service and provides a great way to learn and discover more about music, art, news, science, history, etc.

YouTube can be used as a 21st century learning tool to enhance instruction, and support critical thinking and problem solving. According to Saenz (2011), there are many benefits to using video in education, such as recorded video talks, which allows students to proceed at their own pace providing the opportunity to pause and repeat segments without the pressure of having to perform in the presence of teachers or classmates. Online videos give learners the option to choose the pace of instruction that fits their learning styles and in some cases assist with mastery learning (Galbraith, 2004).

YouTube provides the opportunity to develop strategies to support learning in both formal and informal settings. YouTube is being utilized by many educators in both online and face-to-face instruction through educational YouTube channels, such as Khan Academy (providing free online math and science courses and lessons) and American Museum of Natural History (provides information on various museum exhibits) (Burns, 2016). YouTube also caters to educators and learners through various specific channels, such as Teachers, Primary and Secondary Education, #Education, #LifelongLearning, and Educator.com.

YouTube is a great source of many instructional videos that support learning media and technology literacy. As an educator YouTube is easy to use, however, it requires some research to determine which YouTube channels and videos support and enhance the instruction. Once specific channels are chosen, it is important to first watch the videos to determine if the content is appropriate and supports the instruction. Additionally, educators can utilize YouTube videos to video themselves or students in planned activities. In order to post videos, you can create an account on Google/YouTube with an email address and password in order to become registered. Once registered, it is easy to upload videos from various file formats, such as computers and cell phones.

To get started: Go to www.youtube.com and sign in. Click on Upload at the top of the page. Select the video you would like to upload from your computer or cell phone. You can add a title, up to 100 characters and a description up to 5,000 characters. Click publish to finish uploading. Click Done to finish upload or click Share to privately share the video.

References

About BlueJeans network. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.bluejeans.com/about

BlueJeans. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.bluejeans.com/products

Burns, M. (2016). Harnessing the Power of YouTube in the Classroom. Retrieved from: https://www.edutopia.org/blog/harnessing-power-youtube-in-classroom-monica-burns

Galbraith, J. (2004). Active viewing: and oxymoron in video-based instruction? Society for Applied Learning Technologies Conference, designer.50g.com/docs/Salt_2004.pdf

LinkedIn Influencer. (n.d.). Retrieved from:  https://www.linkedin.com/help/linkedin/answer/49650/linkedin-influencer?lang=en

LinkedIn Learning. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://learning.linkedin.com/for-entire-companies

LinkedIn Newsroom (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://news.linkedin.com/about-us#company-history

Roslansky, R. (2016). Introducing LinkedIn Learning, a Better Way to Develop Skills and Talent. Retrieved from: https://learning.linkedin.com/blog/whats-new/launching-linkedin-learning

Saenz, A. (2011). Salman Khan Describes the Video Education Revolution at TED. Retrieved from: https://singularityhub.com/2011/03/17/salman-khan-describes-the-video-education-revolution-at-ted-video/#sm.0000mpoa6zzocfb7te12mznc2f3be

Webwise. (n.d.). Explained: What is YouTube? Retrieved from: https://www.webwise.ie/parents/what-is-youtube/

Understanding Learners Infographics

For this week’s assignment, I created two infographics to support understanding lifelong learners and working adult learners. Infographics are helpful for learners due to their creative ability to communicate visually in a compact way (Gretter, 2015). According to Smiciklas (2012), images are processed faster than text, so using infographics to communicate can make it easier for the audience to connect to the information.

References:

Gretter, S. (2015). Using Infographics for Teaching and Learning. Retrieved from: http://insideteaching.grad.msu.edu/using-infographics-for-teaching-and-learning/

Smiciklas, M. (2012). The Power of infographics: Using Pictures to Communicate and Connect with Your Audience. Retrieved from: http://ptgmedia.pearsoncmg.com/images/9780789749499/samplepages/0789749491.pdf

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References:

Digital Learning Compass organization. (2017). The Distance Education Enrollment Report 2017. Retrieved from: https://onlinelearningconsortium.org/news_item/new-study-six-million-students-now-enrolled-distance-education/

eLogic Learning, (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://elogiclearning.com/15-elearning-trends-and-statistics-to-know-for-2017/

HuffPost (2017). Retrieved from: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/21/professors-social-media_n_4137697.html

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Why this Blog?

As part of my coursework and portfolio project in an online course, Learning Technologies, this will serve as a space where I can share and apply my learning of a Web 3.0 tool, a blog. I am creating this blog to support the idea of lifelong learning with an emphasis on using technology tools. I believe that learning doesn’t end in the classroom; learning extends into all aspects of life. Eleanor Roosevelt (as cited in Digital Edition, 2017) said it best, “all of life is a constant education”(p.1).

Check out my ‘About’ page to learn a little more about me.

Reference

Digital Edition. (2017). Eleanor Roosevelt, “My day, December 22, 1945,” The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Digital Edition. Retrieved from: https://www2.gwu.edu/ ~erpapers/myday/displaydoc.cfm?_y=1945&_f=md000215.

An Introduction and Rational for Selecting a Blog as my Technology Tool

Blogs are popular. The number of bloggers in the United States is set to reach 31.7 million users in 2020 (Statista, 2015). Blogs are effective for organizing information, articulating, developing and sharing ideas (Mortensen & Walker, 2002). In addition, blogging encourages critical and analytical thinking and allows individuals to develop wider perspectives through interacting with peers and a large audience with varying thoughts and opinions through the Internet (Ellison & Wu, 2008).

There are many blog-hosting sites that provide an online, open source platform, however I have chosen WordPress due to its easy platform, its ability to act as a fully functional website and its diverse themes and options. This is my first blog and although I have no personal experience completing a blog, it supports my interest in sharing knowledge and learning a new technology. In addition, a blog is an engaging tool that supports the development of my writing skills and caters to my own personal interest, self-expression and creativity (Awada & Ghaith, 2014).

References

Awada, G. & Ghaith, G. (2014). Effect of using the blog educational tool on writing achievement and motivation for legal writing. International Journal of Education and Reseach, 2(12), 371-388. 

Ellison, N. B., & Wu, Y. (2008). Blogging in the classroom: A preliminary exploration of student attitudes and impact on comprehension. Journal of Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, 17(1), 99–122.

Mortensen, T., & Walker, J. (2002). Blogging thoughts: Personal publications as an online research tool. In A. Morrison (Ed.), Researching ICTs in context, p. 249–278). Oslo: InterMedia.

Statista. (2015). Retrieved from: https://www.statista.com/statistics/187267/number-of-bloggers-in-usa/

Intended Audience and Plan for my Blog

The intended audience is geared towards novices and beginners and those who may be leery of creating a blog; yet want to expand one’s knowledge of technology. Also, the audience can be educators or trainers looking for resources on how to teach others. I am planning on using the blog as a tool for sharing what I am learning about creating a blog, as well as showcasing additional technology tools. I want to support others that are new to blogs and blogging and encourage them to not fear technology tools that support learning. Somewhat selfishly, the most important use of this blog is to support my own learning journey.

Overall Blog Style and Theme

The overall style and theme is important when creating a blog. WordPress provides thousands of different themes. It is really helpful to have thousands of choices, but its important to make sure your theme can also be customized to change colors, fonts and layout features (Solostream, n.d.). I have chosen Lodestar, a one-page parallax theme designed for beginners and startups (WordPress, n.d.).

References

Solostream. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://www.solostream.com/importance-selecting-right-wordpress-theme/

WordPress. (n.d.). Retrieved from: https://wordpress.com/theme/lodestar/christinecarpenterelearning.wordpress.com