Educational Technology

ED 308 Curriculum Design and Assessment e-Class (Spring 19)

What a terrific journey ED 308 has been!

I am very pleased with the amount of information I learned from this course. The assignments were challenging and beneficial, and the blog posts were informational and useful. Throughout the course, we were required to read chapters from our textbook. The textbook readings were very beneficial, and I could not have made it through the course without the book. Also, I would not have made it through the course had it not been for Dr. Gale and his organization and engagement. Dr. Gale made the course flow easily and in a way that avoided stressing students out. He created well-developed directions and rubrics for each assignment, and he made sure to quickly answer any questions we might have had. Thank you, Dr. Gale!

The most beneficial assignment from this course was the Course Development Assignment. This was the biggest assignment of the semester, and it was also probably the most challenging. With the Course Development Assignment, we were to actually create a course related to a topic that interests us. Within the course we had to create objectives, assessments, student interactions, discussion boards, assignments, and modules. The assignment was extremely lengthy, but we had over half of the semester to create it and modify it. Each week we were to add to the assignment. The reason why I believe this assignment was the most beneficial is because it allowed me to physically see what all it takes to create an online course. This assignment allowed me to strengthen my viewpoint on the importance of clear communication. Giving vivid, descriptive instructions is a huge key to success, and this became more and more evident to me as I was creating assignments and assessments for the course. Because my students cannot hear me speaking, it is essential for my language to be clear in typing.

Click here to view my Course Development Assignment for ED 308.

Another aspect of this course that I really enjoyed was the Blog Assignments. There were five total blog assignments, and each related to another portion of our Course Development Assignment. With each blog post, we were to explain a summary of what was to be covered in class that week, an item of interest for our own course, and a problem or concern that we might have relating to our course. For extra credit we were allowed to choose two classmates' blog posts to review. To receive the credit, we had to help the classmates with their thoughts and concerns and provide them with what we would do in that situation. The replies were to be substantial and significantly helpful. I enjoyed the blog posts and replies because they helped me receive ideas from my classmates. Not only did I receive helpful tips from my peers, but I also was able to help my peers with their concerns. I enjoy student-to-student interactions.

Click here to view my Blog Page.

To wrap up all of the learning gained in ED 308, the Module Course Development Assignment is a great way for us to express our newly obtained knowledge. With the Module Course Development, we were to create one of our modules from our Course Outline Assignment in Blackboard CourseSites. This assignment is one that has to be completed in a slow manner. We have to pay careful attention to what they are doing and make sure they are completing everything correctly. We have to watch and make sure that they are creating the format and content in a manner that makes it easy for the potential students to understand and navigate through. In order to complete the Module Development assignment, we have to watch videos that explain in detail how to navigate CourseSites and what the instructor is looking for. Creating this module in CourseSites has been challenging, but it has surely been beneficial. I feel as if I could create a course comfortably now. I will post a link to my Module Course Development Assignment below when it is completed.


ED 408 Issues and Trends in Educational Technology (Summer 19)

I am very pleased with the ED 408 educational technology course with Professor Janice Newlin. Because this was a five week course, it was challenging to have two due dates per week, but Professor Newlin made it very possible for her students to complete the course with ease.

The textbook in this course was full of beneficial information and was very interesting to read. I would like to add that I had the opportunity to meet with the author of our textbook, Julie Lindsay, along with Professor Newlin via Zoom. During this Zoom meeting, I was able to chat with Julie (who lives in Australia) about aspects of global collaboration. Julie also enjoyed hearing about my experiences of seeing technology implementations in north Alabama classrooms. It was a fabulous experience of having the opportunity to tell her how interesting her textbook is, and how I am able to sit and read through it with ease and without being overwhelmed with information. Julie mentioned to Professor Newlin and me that she is hoping to create another textbook soon, due to some applications and resources mentioned in the textbook being outdated and nonexistent. I am so appreciative that Professor Newlin allowed me that experience!

It is safe to say that I have been enlightened tremendously about global collaboration and the benefits of teaching students to collaborate with other classrooms, schools, states, and even countries. Students in ED 408 learn the attributes of a global educator, learn what global connected learning is and consists of, how to become a global education leader, what online global collaboration is and why it is good, as well as barriers and enablers to global collaboration.

During this course I learned about different individuals who have created global classrooms and became global educators themselves. For example, Anne Mirtschin is a "teacherpreneur" (person who takes all best practices in education and latest advances in technology and uses them to blaze new trails in teaching and learning) who trained herself to become a global educator by finding and designing global project opportunities for her students and bringing rich learning activities to the classroom. I was given the opportunity to study and summarize a case study each week in ED 408. My first case study summary was completed on Anne Mirtschin. I enjoyed completing this activity each week because it allowed me to dig deeper into the content and study the individual and his or her attributes in depth.

For the final exam in ED 408, students were to create their own Global Collaboration Project Design. The project is designed for the student to apply what they have learned about global collaboration and create a Global Project and explain it via Screencast Presentation. Students were to identify the Flat Classroom Framework as well as Curriculum Planning, Standards Alignment, Inputs, and Outcomes.

Below is my Global Collaboration Project Design.

ED 407 Emerging Instructional Technologies (Summer 19)

I have enjoyed this course significantly! Dr. Letitia Bergantz made this course interesting and engaging. The course was very challenging considering it was only five weeks long, but I learned a lot during that time frame. I am very pleased with what this course introduced to me.

It has been fascinating to learn about predicted technologies for the future of our classrooms and workplaces. My favorite module of this course was the Minority Report lesson. We were to watch the movie and then identify some of the predicted technologies that were presented in the movie. We conducted a critical analysis of the movie and researched the status of those emerging technologies. We also were to discuss how some of those technologies would apply to our career choice. Conducting research for these emerging technologies enlightened me to so much information. I had no idea that technologies such as insect robots were actually being built and used today (especially in our military). It was very eye-opening to conduct this research.

Click here to view my Minority Report Critical Analysis.

Another interesting lesson I completed in this class focused on researching the Horizon Report and Deloitte Trends: Tech Predictions. We were to individually create presentations that discussed these predicted technologies, key trends, and significant challenges. We had the option of researching the K-12 edition or the Higher Education edition. I chose K-12. This edition examines emerging technologies for their potential on teaching, learning, and creative inquiry in pre-college education environments. I created a multimedia presentation, as well as watched my peers' presentations and conducted 3 peer reviews.

Below is my Horizon Report Key Trends & Significant Challenges presentation.

A very fun module was Emerging Technologies in the News. In this module, students were to create a breaking news video in the world of educational technology. We were to submit our topics to Dr. Bergantz to have them approved. I created my first submission on Mixed Reality. The best part about completing these presentations is the research that goes into them. I learn so much while I research information to include in my presentations.

To see what I learned about Mixed Reality, watch the breaking news segment below!

I truly enjoyed this course and all it had to offer. It was full of information that I can definitely use in my future career of teaching. This course was full of student interaction through discussion boards and peer reviews. Dr. Bergantz also participated in the discussion boards, which was encouraging. I am so glad I chose educational technology as my minor.

ED 410 Curriculum Integration (Fall 19)

Upon completion of ED 410, I have learned so much about integrating technology into the classroom. In this course, we broke down technology integration and learned what it is, what the research says, what it can look like in curriculum, and how to manage the integration. We were able to become familiar with terms related to technology integration, as well as benefits of integrating technology. In this course we were provided with several opportunities to create multimedia presentations. Although this was challenging, it was rewarding to see the final products. As I was completing these presentations, I constantly thought about my future students who would enjoy doing such activities.

Towards the beginning of the course, our main focus was based on what technology integration is and what it consists of. We gathered and organized information to create a presentation in response to questions related to technology integration. We answered what technology integration is and what it is not, explained the differences among terms, and discovered what research has to say about the effect of technology use for teaching and learning on the academic achievement and student success of elementary aged students. Below you will find my Technology Integration presentation:

One assignment I vividly remember creating was based on technology integration frameworks. The frameworks to be discussed were TIP, SAMR Model, LoTi, TIM, and TPACK. View my presentation to learn more about these frameworks:

We then moved our focus to integrating technology into curriculum. I learned that technology integration in the classroom is going to do more for the students rather than just engage them, it is going to allow them to take more control over their own learning. It encourages student-centered and project-based learning.

One important aspect of this course that was new to me was the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) standards. These are national technology standards for students, educators, administrators, technology coaches, and computer science teachers. ISTE standards transform teaching and learning. Transforming education requires us to rethink how we teach and learn.

Lesson 5 of our course relates to management and technology integration. The intent of this lesson was to help us learn to manage our classroom while students are busy creating mutlimedia projects. We were to create our own multimedia presentations describing best practices for managing technology-infused classrooms, how management affects lesson planning, and best practices for managing 1:1 and BYOD classrooms. We were also required to identify if certain management strategies apply to specific technologies. Here is my Management and Technology Integration presentation:

In this course it was of great importance for us to learn how to design instructional materials that demonstrate the ability to use technology to support active, engaged student learning with technology. We created a 5E Lesson Plan on the topic of our choice. The 5Es are engagement, exploration, explanation, elaboration, and evaluation. Our lesson plans were technology-based and we were challenged to integrate technology in unique ways. I specifically like how Dr. Cowan required us to stray away from PowerPoint/slides presentations. These can be useful and helpful sometimes, but our goal was to have our students create a technology product to demonstrate their understanding of the content taught. In this course we were required to provide peer evaluations of the 5E lesson plans. It was interesting to see everyone's lesson plans and to be able to assess them and provide effective feedback to one another. Dr. Cowan allowed us to submit an initial lesson plan and then begin peer reviews. The next week we were given the opportunity to read our peers' feedback to our submissions and make the applicable changes before submitting to Dr. Cowan for an official grade. This was very helpful. I really enjoyed the opportunity to make changes where they were needed. You may view my 5E lesson plan here.

This course was very effective. Dr. Wendy Cowan is the ideal instructor. She made sure to be open and available for any questions, reminded us each week of upcoming events, and was very organized with the content and assignment instructions. I am very appreciative to have had such impactful instructors throughout the completion of this educational technology minor. I believe this minor, along with the skills I have been taught, will truly make me more marketable when it comes time to getting a teaching job.

ED 307 Teaching Strategies for Digital Age (Fall 19)

Wow! This course has blown me away! The amount of information I learned in this course is crazy cool! This course enlightened me to teaching pedagogies that I believe NEED to be in our classrooms. This course was filled with a variety of teaching strategies that will help me be more advanced when I enter the school building.

Most of our focus was directed towards partnering pedagogies and 21st century skills. We jumped right into researching 21st century skills in Module 1. We created an infographic describing the partnership for 21st century learning skills and their role in K-12 education. Take a look at my infographic here!

In Module 2, I was introduced to "flipped classroom". I thought I had an idea about what flipped classroom is, but after researching and creating an animated video, I learned what it is and how it can benefit both classroom teachers and students. I used Plotagon for the first time to create my flipped classroom video. Check it out:

I was so excited to see that Module 3's topic was constructivism. The Athens State College of Education's conceptual framework advocates a constructivist approach to teaching. I knew how important it was to know the components of a constructivist approach, so I was excited to dive into this lesson. For this module, we were to view the Softchalk Constructivism lesson and conduct reseach to find answers for the following:

  1. What is constructivism?
  2. Who are the foundational theorists behind constructivism?
  3. How does constructivism differ from traditional ideas about teaching and learning? Be sure to discuss the following components
    1. Curriculum
    2. How students are viewed
    3. How students work
    4. Teachers role
    5. Assessment
  4. What is the PAR Model of learning and how does it relate to constructivism? Be sure to provide a brief overview of each PAR model component.
  5. Provide a scenario of a topic that you could teach using a constructivist approach. Format your scenario using the PAR model.

Needless to say, I learned A LOT from this lesson. I also learned about a new technology that I have never had experience with before. It is called Zentation. Zantation allows the presenter to speak and be seen while presenting a PowerPoint. I recorded my narration on YouTube, uploaded it and my PowerPoint to Zentation, then adjusted the slides to align with my narration. Check it out here: Zentation Presentation.

Continuing, our book for this course was Marc Prensky's Teaching Digital Natives. In Module 4, our task was to work with our group members that we were assigned with to summarize each chapter of the book. We collaborated via Wiki. If you navigate to my blog tab under "More", you will find my blog post for the Prensky text.

The Prensky text focuses on partnering in education. Prior to this book, I was not familiar with partnering. Now, I have learned what it is, how it helps learners, and why it is important for teaching digital natives. Breaking down each chapter into summaries really allowed me and my group members to explore Prensky's ideas and become enlightened about partnering. I already knew that changes were needed in the classroom due to our ever-changing society, and the partnering pedagogy addresses the needs of 21st century learners.

The book identifies the key role of technology in today's learning, calms teacher's fears of technology, and offers ways to deal with the availability or lack of availability in the school or classroom. However, Prensky makes sure to include that partnering and 21st century skills are not only about technology. So much more is required. Technology use is just a part of the new transition.

In Module 5, we used what we learned about partenering pedagogies to create an investigation on a specific partnering pedagogy that we were assigned. Dr. Cowan allowed us to suggest two options of partnering pedagogies that we would like to investigate, and then sent out a list of who got what. I got inquiry-based learning, which is the one I wanted. Before starting our investigations, all students were placed in groups to complete Component 1. Each group collaborated via Wiki to provide a detailed overview of each of the following: collaborative/cooperative learning, questioning in collaborative/cooperative learning environment, habits of mind, 21st century learning outcomes, and research regarding the effectiveness of partnering/collaborative/cooperative learning and advantages and disadvantages of each.

For Component 2, each individual student was to use this information along with more specific informaiton related to our partnering pedagogy to create an investigative report. The investigation was to be a multimedia presentation, 7-10 minutes in length, and have audio besides music. Embedded videos could not play over 30 seconds each. Completing this multimedia presentation allowed me to dive into inquiry-based learning and become very knowledgeable about it. For Component 3, we had to conduct five peer reviews. The reviews had to be specific. We had to mention what we liked most about the technique/format, one thing we disliked, a suggestion for improvement, as well as content information: the presented information we found most interesting, something we learned from the presentation, and an example/idea of how we think the methodology may be used in our future profession. View my investigation below!

It was time for us to create a lesson plan utilizing a partnering pedagogy in Module 6. It was hard for me to decide which one I wanted to use, but I went with problem-based learning. For the lesson plan, we were to meet 21st century standards and Educate Alabama standards, implement the flipped classroom approch, use partnering pedagogies, create a rubric, and include the specified lesson plan components. The exciting part of this lesson was that we got to discuss and present our lesson plans with our group members synchronously via Blackboard Collaborate. I enjoyed this! My problem-based learning lesson can be viewed here: Our Plastic Oceans.

I am so grateful for the time and effort that Dr. Wendy Cowan exerts into this course. I learned more than I ever thought I could. I am super thankful also for the educational technology minor being available. I feel 100% more prepared to walk into a classroom now. I plan to use these appraches and strategies in my classroom in order to better prepare my students for their bright futures. As mentioned before, I am very appreciative to have had such impactful instructors throughout the completion of this educational technology minor!