ILP Live Next Week

Next week my ILP goes live with student testers. I am nervous to see how the implementation of a social media technology will shine or flop. I spent a lot of time learning about the different aspects of technology implementation within classes.

My ultimate goal is to create more engaged and excited students. I want them to find the passion in the profession. I want to give them some freedom to explore on their own and pick up new insight and ideas.

A tall order I know! However, as my profession evolves we need self-motivated passionate professionals. This is my way of seeing what could work to accomplish that.

So far the RTScholar website has the following functionalities:

  1. Personal Learning Network (PLN): Facebook-style social media platform with similar functionality. Intention to teach students how to use social media to build a personal learning network for their career.
    • “The PLN consists of relationships between individuals where the goal is the enhancement of mutual learning. The currency of the PLN is learning in the form of feedback, insights, documentation, new contacts, or new business opportunities. It is based on reciprocity and a level of trust that each party is actively seeking value-added information for the other” (Digenti, 1999, p. 53).
    • “Social media promotes self-directed learning, which prepares students to search for answers and make decisions independently. When reinforced in a classroom setting, these social media skills can be guided and refined to produce better learning outcomes and critical awareness” (Ashford University, 2016, para. 3).
  2. Student Question/Answer Feature: To engage students in asking and answering each other’s questions. Rewards students who frequently help classmates and encourages discussion.
  3. Blog Feature: Can be used for personal expression, or even melded into a newsletter we can publish on the website and to our community partners. Publishing student content would not be done without student knowledge and permission.
  4. Tutoring/Video LMS: Fully functional LMS for students to view video lectures, notes, and discuss lectures. File, quiz, and assignment functionality also available. Ideas for use include:
    • Tutoring on subjects students might need review.
    • Capturing our best instructors lectures. Every instructor has their strength and if faculty moves on we lose that. We could capture faculty best subjects and store them in an archive to always serve students.
    • Flipping classrooms. “A flipped classroom is one where students are introduced to content at home, and practice working through it at school” (TeachThought Staff, 2016, para. 2).
  5. Clinical Simulations: To attain their certification after graduation students must pass the clinical simulation exam. Our program pass rates are above the national average but it has been one of our goals to further improve this. Not only can faculty program in clinical simulation style questions for students to take, but students will also be able to upload their project clinical simulations (after reviewing from faculty before publishing). Students on the website can practice these questions whenever they would like.
  6. GDPR Compliance: GDPR stands for the General Data Protection Regulation. The European Union created a legal framework to protect the personal information of those using the internet. It went into effect May 25, 2018, and many international businesses had to become compliant. While we do not have any international students, this feature gives students full control of their data. This is a nice feature that I feel every website should have.
  7. Help Section: Video help section to ensure any student can easily use the website’s basic features.

I also submitted my ILP to the best practices committee today. I created a special page with a video tour and functionality listing. I am eager and nervous to hear their opinions. Wish me and my students luck!

 

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Final ds106 Daily Creates

 

Internet Mindfulness Usage

This week we learned a lot about internet mindfulness. Technology is fairly new and has grown and changed rapidly. While technologies like social media and cell phones have improved our lives, they have also become a distraction from it.

Technology Creates New Risks

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Photo CC-By Viviandnguyen_

If you watch people walking down a street you quickly see that many cannot even walk without their cell phones out.  People are so addicted to cell phones that they cannot even put them away while driving. According to the Department of Motor Vehicles (2014), 26% of all car crashes in 2014 involved cell phone use.

It has never been more clear that many of us don’t know how to turn off the tech and focus on real life.

Technology can Separate

While technology like cell phones, social media, and email was created to bring everyone closer together often it does just the opposite. Have you ever looked around a restaurant to see all the people sitting together eating on their phones?

Do you talk to people in the elevator or sit on your phone? Do you ever notice anyone walking by you anymore, or do you have your phone out and nose to the screen at all times?

Unfortunately, many people trying to get connected via tech, end up disconnected. As much as technology is a part of our lives it is a supplement not a replacement to real human interaction.

The Internet Giveth, and Taketh Away

In our connected world, the benefits of information and community at our fingertips are well known. However, the same force that can charge up your energy reserves can also deplete them.

For me, the internet is an excellent source of clinical information and inspiration. I love creating new websites or worlds using resources available to me through the internet. However, I realize that I can become zapped of life energy when I participate in certain internet activities.

Life Zapping Internet Activities:

  1. Facebook scrolling. That late night facebook scroll across the feed of people, advertisements, and cat videos.
  2. Email Inbox: The eternally dreadful inbox. Email started out as a tool to enhance communication but now it is a god damn burden to manage. Trying to navigate garbage from good stuff is impossible. Not to mention trying to archive that rediculous email everyone keeps hitting “reply all” to…. for the love of god people stop! I don’t need to see everyone saying “congrats” to Suzie on the promotion. Just hit reply and let Suzie know one on one…
  3. Video Games: While these are fun in moderation it is easy to get sucked into the void of 12 hour play days and that horrible post-bing-gaming session fatigue.

While I have gone on about the bad aspects of our connected technologically advanced lives, I love tech. I am a tech junkie. However, I feel it is important for each of us to find balance in our lives between the virtual and physical worlds. We are not made of binary code, we are made of genetic code. We cannot live completely in a digital world and attain fullfillment.

Resources for Becoming Digitally Mindful

  1. Getting Things Done: https://gettingthingsdone.com/
  2. Showing up for work: How digital mindfulness makes the difference: https://digitalworkplacegroup.com/2017/04/12/showing-work-digital-mindfulness-makes-difference/

References

Department of Motor Vehicles. (2014). Texting & Driving. Retrieved from https://www.dmv.org/distracted-driving/texting-and-driving.php

 

Forced Digital Activism.. no thanks

I learned a lot about digital activism this week and the question came up:

“Should schools require some kind of activism of students?”

It took me back to when I was a k-12 student and how my classmates and I participated in learning. I was passionate about getting through tests and learning enough to be successful in my future. However, my mind was nowhere near politics or other similar activist subjects.

The only time in my k-12 youth that I became passionate about something and participated in activism was when the school would not post a flyer for my Wiccan club. The school allowed bible club to post their posters but would not authorize my group or post my content. They would not even consider it. In this moment I ranted on social media, to my parents, and to my friends.  The school told me separation of religion and state would not allow them to consider my club. However, when I would bring up the bible club they would ignore me.

While I am no longer Wiccan, or religious at all for that matter, I am not sure that I would have wanted to become an online activist for this issue. My under-developed brain would likely have made some permanent keystrokes online that I wouldn’t want following me around for the rest of my life. The things I believed as a young woman are completely different than what I believe now. This goes for politics, religion, and a general worldview.

Forcing young people to participate in activism seems counterproductive. If they are not ready to be passionate about something, why make them choose? They should be able to move into that realm when they feel comfortable and ready. Plus, online activism can become heated, negative, and even dangerous.

I do however believe that teaching students how to participate in online activism would be beneficial. Teaching students how to participate in respectful debate and conflict resolution could be included in digital citizenship curriculum. One resource that I found very informative and insightful was one from meta-activism by Mary Joyce.

 

ds106 Daily Creates Week#3

My ILP Could Win me a Cruise?

I have been having a lot of fun with my ILP. This class inspired me to explore how digital learning could be applied to my teaching to enhance the student experience. It lead me to create a website called http://www.rtscholar.com

I used to build websites so this was fun for me. I have thus incorporated the following features into my site:

  1. Facebook like social media feature where students can share thoughts, video, images, events, websites, and files. Only students with a school email address can sign up to enhance student privacy.
  2. LMS (Learning Management System) that uses video and has quiz functionality. Works exactly like Udemy. It is under the “tutoring” menu.
  3. Clinical Simulation style function. For the student’s board exams they have to do what is called a set of clinical simulation questions. Our pass rate is above the national average, but we want it to be better. Now students can practice these types of questions on my site, and can even make their own!
  4. Blog. Students can now post assignments to blogs.
  5. GDPR Compliance. While all our students are in the U.S. and this is not a requirement, I implemented controls so students can fully control their own content on the site and remove it as well. This is to enhance student privacy and comfort.
  6. IDEA: Student RT newsletter?

I have a pharmacology course starting in one week. I plan on implementing my PLN concepts into this class as a test. Here is an example of the assignments I created for this course:

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Taking the digital literacy course has taught me the value of giving students more power to explore the content on their own. I have felt this first hand because my dig lit class has allowed me to explore content on my own, and led to some of the most creative and inspiring experiences I have had yet. I hope that I can find a way to use these new insights to do the same for my students. Inspiring them is one of our biggest challenges. We want new passionate respiratory therapists.

So, you’re probably wondering about the title… the whole “cruise” thing. Well, I was explaining my project to a co-worker and he loved it. I showed him the website and he told me I need to submit it to our company best practices. The winners in each category are awarded a free cruise where they meet with employees from other campuses and discuss the best practice.

While I started this project for fun and in hopes of motivating students I never thought other people would be so impressed by it. We shall see! I’ll keep you updated!

PS I’m using my site to help a co-worker who is covering my class while I am out next week. Instead of learning the difficult content he just has to press play on my site in the lecture videos I made for him… I also found a fun site called Powtoon…. and he doesn’t know yet, but at the end of the lecture videos is a little quiz the students have to take… here is a taste.. his name is Justin:

 

ds106 Daily Creates Week#2