I know we are deep into January. Resolutions should have been made and broken by now! I try to avoid the resolution trap. We can make small changes at any time. Here’s one.
Technology is a part of my life. I’ve adapted my smartphone so that I can access
my work, read the news, listen to music, and track my exercise. By working on healthy digital literacy skills, I hope to continue harnessing this tool to enhance my life. The same goes for social media. I read a lot of blog posts about the scourge of Twitter or the life-suck of Facebook. I have concerns about the use of these media platforms, but digital literacy is required to make sure these products don’t overtake my life. Perhaps it’s optimistic, but platforms like these require harnessing. The responsibility of digital literacy rests with me, the user.
That said, I experienced a vacation from these technologies. Literally. I traveled out of the country and left the phone in the suitcase. This was instructive. I used my phone as a camera.
What did I enjoy not having? Notifications. I don’t need them. I turned them off. Just like 2006, I can at least decide when I access information via these platforms.
I did miss chatting with friends via Twitter. I think the ability to text friends has a lot of relevance in an adult’s life. I felt a little cut-off from work, where I do derive satisfaction and identity. I missed accessing music streaming.
So, that’s the little thing I’m changing: I will create a boundary between myself and my digital, automated life.
Welcome back to the first #MacroSW chat of 2018! This week’s chat will review the state of homicide in the US in 2017. Our chat will discuss current homicide research, challenges, and policy implications. Our guest expert will be Tanya L. Sharpe, PhD, MSW (@DrTSharpe), an Associate Professor at the University of Maryland, School of Social […]
via Homicide – A Year in Review – #MacroSW 1/18 at 9pm EST —
I started using discussion boards out of complete practicality. I had to be away for a conference, and I needed a solution for my evening class. I’ve come to use the discussion board in almost all my classes now because I find the use of discussion boards very helpful in engaging students in a different way. When I read student posts, I often realize that I may have been underestimating their interest or willingness to go into depth on a topic or theme.
A colleague asked me for some design tips. Here’s what I typically use.
- If you know you will be absent for the week, it’s good to give as much lead time as you can so students know what’s going on. At the very least, let students know at the beginning of your class this could be coming if you need to have a backup plan for an inclement weather week.
- Decide how you will grade or record the results of participation. In my case, I usually just count it towards attendance, but you can make planned online discussions part of a graded assignment.
- For online discussions, I will usually create 4 questions, and let the students select 2 to answer.
- Students are directed to provide an answer that is 75 to 100 words.
- I set a deadline for this. If the class meets Monday, I will set a deadline that the first question/s be answered with a post by Wednesday evening at 11:59 p.m.
- Students are directed to provide two answers, one answer to two students.
- These answers should be 50 to 100 words and should be more than a “ditto” answer. They should provide positive support, challenging follow-up, or something that resembles a “yes, and…”.
- The answers should also have a deadline. If questions are answered by Wednesday, follow-ups should be completed by Sunday evening.
This is just a quick review of how I set discussion boards up.