Twitter Weekly Updates for 2012-02-27

Ethics CPD lecture

As part of our commitment to continuing professional development (CPD) in South African healthcare, we’re required to accumulate 5 ethics credits every year. Yesterday I gave a presentation to the staff in our department in order to fulfill this requirement. It went quite well, although being my first time I felt pretty unprepared.

I learnt a lot from the experience and together with the feedback I got from my colleagues, will be able to refine the workshop for next year. One of the main suggestions was to add more interactivity to the session. I definitely agree that this is one area I could’ve improved on, especially with the view to making it more dynamic.

Posted to Diigo 09/19/2010

    • Survey results indicate that the majority of college students prefer courses that offer podcasts over those that do not
    • Students cite convenience, flexibility, and positive impact on learning as the main reasons to have recorded lectures (Nagel, 2008; Fernandez, Simo, & Sallan, 2009)
    • Lecture capture provides additional resources for students: archived lectures, tutorials for lab work, demonstrations of difficult concepts and complex procedures, and presentations by guest speakers;

      • allows students to review material at their own pace and convenience (Coghlan et al., 2007);

      • offers students more flexibility in note-taking;

      • makes time for active learning during class by having the lecture available for viewing before the class meetings (Lund, 2008);

      • allows students to catch up with a missed lecture;

      • offers another tool for student learning projects (e.g., student-generated podcasts for interviewing locals and sharing with peers in a study-abroad program).

    • Although many anecdotal reports about lecture capture circulate in higher education, only a few notable evaluation studies have investigated its impact on student learning
    • No noticeable impact on students’ class attendance
    • In one study, students explained that they continue to attend lecture because it offers opportunities for interaction in a structured learning environment (Copley, 2007)
    • Offering podcasts of lectures has the potential to improve students’ mastery of course material
    • Undergraduate students have reported in focus groups and surveys that podcasts helped them stay focused on the course, made learning more fun and informal, supported independent learning, and enabled deep engagement with course material (Edirisingha & Salmon, 2007; Duke University, 2005)
    • several perceived benefits of lecture capture technology, including the opportunity to make up a missed class, the convenience of watching lectures on demand, and the potential for increased retention of class materials (Veeramani & Bradley, 2008)
    • when students do use podcasts, they use them for specific reasons and at specific times in a course of study
    • Students report that they appreciate the flexibility of accessing podcasts anywhere and anytime (Fernandez, Simo, & Sallan, 2009; Winterbottom, 2007)
    • students who viewed video presentations of lectures with slides tended to back up and repeat slides containing information that they had difficulty understanding (Dey, Burn, & Gerdes, 2009)
    • Although students may appreciate podcasts, this technology tool should not replace traditional learning resources but, instead, should serve as a complement to them (Fernandez, Simo, & Sallan, 2009)
    • studies show that lecture recordings (audio or video) are used mainly to prepare for exams and review course material in order to gain a better understanding of complex topics
    • students usually view podcasts shortly after a lecture has occurred and in the few days before an exam
    • It is important not to assume that all students possess the same technology skills and have had equal exposure and access to technology
    • students without experience and comfort using techonogy may be disadvantaged when class materials must be retrieved from the Web
    • If the podcast will include students’ questions or responses, you should ask students to sign a consent form when the podcast audience is broader than the class itself
    • The availability of lectures in podcast form may change students’ learning behaviors as well as their expectations about the use of class time
    • Since students take fewer or summary style notes in courses using lecture capture (Brotherton & Abowd, 2004), they have more time to process course material on the spot, which may lead them to ask more questions and want more interactivity during lecture
    • Students may, therefore, expect the format of lectures to shift from a process of information transfer to a more student-centered and interactive format
    • As a result, instructors may need to devote more time to in-class activities that enable students to practice skills, think critically about material, and apply what they’ve heard in lecture to grappling with real-world problems (McKenzie, 2008)
    • Recommendations for Using Lecture Capture Effectively
    • 1. Before you start, make sure that you have clear goals for podcasting lectures and the time to prepare them consistently throughout the entire semester

    • 2.Once you decide to podcast, make time to experiment with recording quality. Poor sound quality may prevent students from using the resource
    • 3. Make podcasts available as soon as possible after a lecture
    • 4. If you require students to listen to podcasts before lecture, provide them with content-related questions or other learning activities
    • 5. When podcasts are assigned in advance of a class meeting, use class time for interactive discussion, student-centered learning activities, or demonstrations to complement and build on podcast content
    • 6. Before making podcasts available, be sure that all of your students have access to and are comfortable using devices to download and play podcasts
    • 7. When appropriate, make reference to podcasts during lectures or when responding to students’ questions so that students will be more likely to use them
    • 8. Make accessing and using podcasts easy and fast by providing detailed instructions for downloading and ensuring that the file format is compatible with common media-playing devices
    • 9.Provide students with a clear explanation of instructional goals
    • 10. Draft an evaluation plan for your lecture capture project to investigate what did and didn’t work for you and your students

Manuel Castells lecture

I was fortunate to be able to attend a lecture on campus today, given by Manuel Castells, the renowned sociologist and one of the foremost scholars of communication in the information age. His talk was inspirational and quite personal, dealing with his own journey which was a treat, since apparently he rarely talks about much of his personal life.

There were a few ideas he mentioned that really struck me. The first was his comment that ever since he was quite young, he had wanted two main things from the “project” of his life; to be free, and to understand the world better in order to change it. He went on to explain how he reasoned that the breathing room required to achieve these things could be found in academia. He also commented that his students always come first, that they constantly challenge him, and are his sources of inspiration, motivation and interestingly, information. I love those themes; that the freedom to change the world can be found in academia, and that our students are our focus.

He’s recently finished a new book, “Communication power“, which he feels will be even more influential than any of his previous works (although he kind of has to say that if he wants to sell this one).