Friday, February 17, 2012

Learning in a Digital World (Module 6)

What impact do you believe technology has on the way you learn?

Google! Google! Google! Do you love the search engines that are available to research topics? Learning in the digital world is effective and efficient in this technologically savvy society. Research engines allow learners to research databases that provide a wealth of knowledge immediately. For example, Walden University offers resources that provide scholarly written journal articles that relate to relevant topics of study. My ability to learn through online courses does differ from my ability to learn in a face to face learning environment. In accordance with Driscoll (2005), the learning environment offers an environment with situated possibilities and constraints. Furthermore, the online learning environment provides a scope of what is possible for the learner to learn through appropriate instructional methods and media. Surely, one of the great attributes of online learning in the digital world for me is the flexibility of time to work a job and to gain a higher education. This would not be feasible for me if I had to commute to a college every day; it is imperative that I work. 

In what ways do you learn differently in an online environment from the way you learned in a face-to-face learning environment?  

Resources are provided in the digital world that promotes communication, collaboration, and diverse resources. Learning in the digital world offers many degree opportunities. Communication in the digital world is provided through discussion forums, wikis, blogs, email, Google documents, Skype, and numerous other tools. Communication using these tools differs from the way you would communicate in a face to face learning environment. I learn differently in an online environment using the constructivist theory. I learn by doing. The learning is more self-oriented than teacher facilitated. Furthermore, I am in control of using my own strengths. For example, I am a visual learner, and I can choose the theories and learning styles that provide the most successful learning experience. 

What do you believe is critical and non-negotiable in teaching and learning?

It is critical and non-negotiable in teaching and learning that the expectations are clearly defined through goals, instructions, objectives, assignments, and collaboration. The knowledge presented must be aligned with state and national standards. Feedback from instructors to students must be continuous. The instructional design must target a diverse group of learners. Educators must knowledgeable and trained effectively to work with online students and face to face students. 


Driscoll, M. P. (2005). Psychology of learning for instruction (3rd ed.).
Boston, MA: Pearson Education.

I responded to Toni Toney and Debra Morris.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Module (5) Blog Post

New Technologies

Briefly describe a situation in which you have encouraged people to use a new technology and have been met with resistance or disappointing results. What attitudes did these people exhibit? What behaviors did they demonstrate?

As an educator, I have had the opportunity to come across people that can’t function without the use of technology, and some people that do not want to use technology. Perhaps, it would be better worded to say that some educators prefer outdated technology. Some teachers were discussing some of the old technology of the past and these were discussed:  chalk board and chalk, film strip projectors, and overhead projectors.  In the past few years, our school district has begun to update out technology. The promethean smart board and the mimio board were the two technological tools being installed in all classrooms. The mimio board was a little less expensive than the smart white board. When the funds got low, the classrooms without the smart boards got the mimio boards. They both are awesome technology tools to me.

 It was in our training sessions that I noted the hesitancy among some my peers to integrate new technology in the classroom. You could feel the negative reception by body language, and there were some comments. Then there were some that felt intimidated by the new technology. Most of the comments had to do with our already tight budget. Some stated that they felt that we did not have the funds to be purchasing such expensive technology when teachers were being furloughed, and teachers losing their jobs. I really could not disagree with that point. However, I did welcome the technology. Uncertain about this new technology and how it would affect our day to day lives in the classroom, there were teachers that embraced the new technology and some that rejected it.  The training session to help each of us become familiar with the smart board and mimio was exceptional. We were all given the opportunity to learn how to integrate this technology in our classroom.

Using Keller’s ARCS model, describe how you could change the motivation of these people, or learners, to encourage success. 

The ARCS (Attention, Relevance, Confidence, and Satisfaction) model is a problem solving approach to designing the motivational aspects of learning environments to stimulate and sustain students’ motivation to learn (Keller, 1983, 1984, 1987).  

Promote Attention – The promethean boards and the mimio boards will help to capture the students’ attention. Teachers will be more effective in their instruction when they are able to capture the attention of their students by using technology in their lessons. Students get to engage in their lessons by using the technology.

Improve Relevance – Educate instructors about how efficient technology is in instructional delivery. Information will be up-to-date and relevant to goal, objective, and standard. Training would allow teachers to have hands on experiences using these tools to learn how important technology can be to the instructor and learner.

Build Confidence – Teachers and students must have hands on experiences to build confidence.

Promote Satisfaction – Educational training, hands on experiences, and gained confidence in using the new technology will lead to satisfaction. Some teachers are already stating that they don’t know how they taught any of the disciplines without technology. Then there are teachers that are still reluctant to use this awesome technology to its full potential. 


Keller, J. M. (1983). Motivational design of instruction. In C. M. Reigeluth (Ed.), Instructional-design theories and models: An overview of their current status. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Keller, J. M. (1984). The use of the ARCS model of motivation in teacher training. In K. Shaw & A. J. Trott (Eds.), Aspects of Educational Technology Volume XVII: staff Development and Career Updating. London: Kogan Page.

Keller, J. M. (1987). Development and use of the ARCS model of motivational design. Journal of Instructional Development, 10(3), 2 – 10.

I responded to Fred Davis' blog and Karen Wondergem's blog.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Connectivism Mindmap (Module 4)

How has your network changed the way you learn? 

Technology has advanced at a high rate of speed. There are many diverse tools that we can now use to learn new information. In the past, we had to depend on resources located at the library to research information. I know that I am dating myself; however, I can remember when there was a card catalog in the library. Encyclopedias offered a wealth of information. I remember when a sales person came by our home; my dad bought a set for us to use. I still have the set in my possession. Today, we rarely have to leave our home or work place to do research. At the touch of our fingertips, we have a wealth of information about diverse topics of interest. The Internet has changed the way we learn in so many different ways. We have more resources than could be imagined at our disposal. Socialization, research, advanced degrees, and communication in general have been changed in a positive way. Networking has made it easier for us to learn, and it has provided us with more to learn.

Which digital tools best facilitate learning for you?

The online tool that best facilitates learning for me has been the distance learning courses that I’ve taken at Walden University. I have had an awesome experience at Walden University. I have learned to use a variety of digital tools that enhance my learning experience. For example, the instructional design at Walden allows us to use email, chat, Skype, Google documents, discussion forums, wikis, and blogs.  

How do you learn new knowledge when you have questions? 

The instructors are eager to communicate and to clarify any instructions that are not precise. I learn new knowledge through collaboration with my instructor, learning communities, and colleagues through various technological tools. The search engine Google is my favorite, and it provides me with many answers about various questions. 

I responded to Margaret Hale and David Davis.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Module (3) Blog Post

Module (3) Blog Post
First, Mr. Howard Rheingold is a flasher dresser. The speaker explains how the use of technology and the Internet have provided opportunities for students to use collaboration in meaningful learning experiences. Students are given the opportunity to become engaged in their educational experience. Constructivists believe that social interactions are imperative in cognitive development. Rheingold proposes the network structure developed by the Internet enhanced communication and sharing of different types of resources. I strongly agree with his assessment. Learners can receive instant feedback and immediate results through collaboration according to Rheingold, 2008.
Do you believe that humans have a basic instinct to “interact and work as a group,” as Rheingold proposed in his discussion of the evolution of Wikipedia as a collectively developed encyclopedia?
Individuals in our society are constantly communicating with other through social networking sites, and they are forming groups. Some of these groups have a positive affect, and some of these groups have a negative impact. Facebook is a great example of a collaborative site that has individuals in groups and provides collaboration. It seems to be addictive, some people are always logging onto social networking sites while driving, shopping, at home, at school, and numerous other places. It was comical when my grandson wanted to talk with me on facebook. I had to quickly remind him that it is against the law for children under thirteen to be on facebook. In accordance with Bernhard, multi-age groups occurrs naturally in our world (Bernhard, 1988). Personally, I believe that humans do have a basic instinct to interact and work as a group. People have an innate sense of wanting to belong to an accepted group.
My first thoughts about Wikipedia are:  it is a great informative website that provides a vast amount of information, and it is a website that is not accepted by many as a credible site. For example, Walden does not want any references from Wikipedia. Personally, I don’t understand why Wikipedia would not be considered a valuable resource.
How can technology facilitate collaboration among learners based on constructivist principles?   
Constructivist instruction emphasizes problem solving, critical thinking, reasoning, and evaluation (Driscoll, 2005). Technologies such as wikis, Google documents, emails, Skype, and blogs are some of the technological tools that would facilitate collaboration based on constructivist principles. My second grade students love to use online game playing that is standard based. However, students must have training to learn how to use these tools effectively. Technology is so advanced in this era, many students are ready to use these tools to collaborate with other students in a standard based learning environment. Specific pedagogical benefits of collaborative learning include the following:  development of critical thinking skills, co-creation of knowledge and meaning, reflection, and transformation learning (Palloff & Pratt, 2005).
Find a current research study that has been conducted in the last 5 years that supports collaboration as an effective tool for learning. Include the link and reference for this study in your blog.

Creating Effective Collaborative Learning Groups in an Online Environment is the topic of this current research conducted in 2009. The URL to this article is Conclusions were drawn from observations that assessments were positive due to the effectiveness of small collaborative learning groups in online classes or in an online learning environment. Collaboration increased the sense of community, increased skill knowledge, and better responses to learning experiences. 


Bernhard, J. G. (1988). Primates in the classroom:  An evolutionary perspective on children’s education. Amherst: The University of Massachusetts Press. 

Driscoll, M. P. (2005). Psychology of learning for instruction (3rd ed). Boston MA:  Pearson Education, Inc.

Palloff, R. M., & Pratt, K. (2005). Collaborating online: Learning together in community. San Francisco, CA:  Jossey-Bass. 

Rheingold, H. (2008, February). Howard Rehingold on collaboration. Vodcast posted to   

I have responded to Cheryl Carroll, Michelle Baylor, and Curtiss Vavra.