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Steve Gilbert's Favorite
for Teaching, Learning, and Technology
Nothing different is the same.
is the same as being there. No transmission, no
[May be better or worse - depends on purpose, .....]
Also see #14 below.
your own observations, judgment.
Don't trust those who have NOT "tried it."
Voice is an
important part of identity.
We don't understand why,
how. Note that highly successful computer animation
movies use human actors' voices.
goes to Paris"
on Shared Governance, Trade-offs, and Truth"
Hybrids always win.
schedule, media, synchronous/asynchronous,
responsibility, stage of expertise, authority,
Using the Web is
about controlling access, notification, viewing/hearing.
All of the following
are ways of controlling what we see/hear from a
computer. Each provides different ways of doing so.
Many appear to have been named and initially described
in ways likely to offend or discourage the majority of
normal human beings from trying them. Don't be deterred
- these can be VERY useful - and easy to begin using!
Google, Google Desktop, Feed2JS, feeds, Flashlight
Online, Writely, Skype, FaceBook, MySpace, blogs, wikis,
podcasting, social networking, Web 2.0 ....?
Steve Gilbert's favorite
info tech tools - mostly free, mostly easy to use - LTAs
Lifelong learning isn't
just for "them."
Need universal, lifelong,
What resources are required? Available?
Online Institute - hybrid professional development
Take advantage of LTAs! (Low-Threshold
"You are not alone!" - Collaborative Teaching
Context for hope: collaboration for
"You are not alone!"
- soccer coach.
Collaborative Teaching: Perhaps the most significant
change - desirable, needed, difficult - [e.g.,
MIT EECS "Cadre" model]. And "Collaborative
Learning" - including team-based learning, isn't so easy
Beware of those who most
strongly advocate/reject "scalable" educational
Don't expect a "Moore's
Law" of human learning. Don't dismiss/accept all
See "Seven Principles of
Good Practice for Undergraduate Education" [Could
the 8th be "Caring"?]
technology revolution brings no easy, fast windfalls of
efficiency for teaching/learning.
No Educational ATMs. Educational research can provide
some useful guidance. So can experienced teachers.
Some educational improvements can be used by a wide
variety of faculty. Some faculty members have
combinations of skills, attitudes, personalities, ...
that can be unusually effective in helping some
As much variety among
teachers, administrators as among learners.
Not teacher-independent "learning objects" - not just
adding Betty Crocker's egg!
Teach to Fish or Give a Fish?
A course is not a pizza!
Too many attractive new
options, too much info, too fast - can't keep up!
Strategic Planning is changing.
"If working 24 hours a day isn't enough, you have to
work nights." - James Moss, ca. 1985, USNA
Keeping Up - Steven Bell
difficult decisions are political. So is assessment.
Discussions" topics can be handled civilly,
The best kind of assessment is really about giving,
getting, and using feedback respectfully and
Class size matters.
Covering vs. Sampling.
Students can be
educational resources - take active roles.
Some students, some of
Highly constructive assessment?
Don't expect old
models to work under new conditions.
At least not the same way.
- Dissemination of innovation - especially educational
uses of information technology.
- Strategic planning.
- Professional development.
- Shared governance.
When conditions change, the same
process cannot produce the same results.
No leader can mandate the results of an inclusive,
consensual planning process.
Decide with uncertainty. [e.g., about "next step" in
- COLLABORATION, EXPERIENCE, ENTHUSIASM: Favor
collaborative groups of enthusiastic colleagues that
include Compassionate Pioneers. [Compassionate Pioneers are
those who not only - reach beyond their own limits and
lead the way in developing or trying new options, but
who also encourage and help their colleagues to take the
Favor those who have "tried it" and still want to move
- AUDIENCE & PURPOSE: Favor project/programs/products
that are clear about WHO they are serving, WHY, and HOW.
- RESPECT DIFFERENCES: Favor projects/programs/products
that respect and address differences in learning needs
and teaching needs.
- CONSTRUCTIVE FEEDBACK: Favor
projects/programs/products that actively solicit and use
frequent constructive feedback from students and
LTAs: Favor LTAs and other ways of using resources that
are already available easily, comfortably, inexpensively
- esp. using students as resources!
projects/programs/products that do NOT "lock people in"
to their usage for more than a year or two.
- SUSTAINABLE SUPPORT: Favor projects/programs/products
that are and will be well supported for the duration of
the anticipated useful life: when things go wrong, it
is obvious how to get help, easy to do so, and no one
will be made to feel like an idiot. [NOTE: At many
higher education institutions the incentive system makes
it unlikely that a faculty member will support for very
long an educational innovation he/she has developed.]
Improvements vs. Transformations
Incremental change is often much more palatable,
feasible, and realistic than "innovation."
One person's change may/may not be another person's
Some people like to be and/or be perceived as
"innovators." Others don't really want to be the "first
on your block..."
Laurel Avenue #205,
To talk about our work
or our organization
contact: Sally Gilbert
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