ruminators' ilk

faculty development, educational technologies, intellectual curieux, info provocations


Faculty Development News This Week:

--Faculty Development at Inver Hills


Faculty Salon: Proof: Ruminations on the Everyday

All are invited to a talk by Martin Springborg on his new book of photography recording the year 2001. He will show some of his works and discuss the process. One of his pieces is currently hanging in the library and his book is available on the reserve shelf.

The program will be on Thursday, January 29th from 4:00 to 6:00 PM in HH203.

Refreshments will be served.

Conferences / Workshops

--Sloan-C Announces the Spring 2004 Online Learning Research Workshop

Sloan-C announces an online workshop focusing on the latest issues in online learning. The workshop starts on February 15, 2004. "Pre-registration indicated a high level of interest in the workshop, so if you wish to attend, you are encouraged to sign up as soon as you can when registration opens on January 21. Developed with forty of the most influential researchers in the field of online learning and brought directly to your computer, this workshop can provide you with critical information about the most important issues in online learning including:
· Blended Learning
· Assessment Methodologies
· Improving Student Satisfaction
· Increasing Learning Effectiveness
· and Other Key Topics in Online Learning

Included with the workshop, you will receive a CD-ROM that includes fourteen video presentations from the researchers and their associated research reports, allowing you to see and hear the presentations as many times as you wish! And the workshop itself will allow you to ask any questions you have of presenters in both asynchronous and synchronous formats. The results of the workshop will be published by Sloan-C."

This workshop has been developed in collaboration with University of Massachusetts at Lowell, who will be offering optional CEU credit, as well as optional graduate course credit at the masters or doctoral levels.

Please visit the following URL for further details on the workshop and to register: "".

Learning Communities

--Social Software and the Politics of Groups

What social relationships are inherent in online groups?

To find out, read the article:

Social Software

--The Power of Dissent in Organizations

A health organization requires dissention, which is not the same as adversarial and contentious discussion.

This article is from the University of Chicago Law School Web site. It originally appeared in Los Angeles Times,September 17, 2003.

Read the article:

The Power of Dissent

--Social Networks

How to nurture social networks.

Social Networks

Online Instruction

--Instructional Design

This article addresses how to achieve flow in online learning.

Interesting article:

Instructional Design for Flow in Online Learning

--Online Instruction Toolkit

Instructors new to online learning will find this useful.


--Online Courses, Quality Control

This article provides a rubric for quality control of online instruction.

--Criteria for Evaluating the Quality of Online Courses

--Strategies for Blended Learning

Interested in a recipe book for blended learning.

Strategic vs. Doctrinaire Blending

This is a PDF file (77 pages)

--The International Center for Distance Learning (ICDL)

"ICDL is an internationally-recognised center for research, teaching, consultancy, information and publishing activities based in the UK Open University.
ICDL promotes international research and collaboration by providing information from its library and databases; other audiences are reached through publications."

Visit the site:

The International Center for Distance Learning

--The Importance of Human-Centered Web Design

This article discusses the use of gratuitous graphics in Web site design.

Human-Centered Web Design

--Distance Education Accreditation

Learn all about the accreditation process.

Distance Education Accreditation

--Design Principles for Online Instruction: A New Kind of Classroom

How to design an high quality online course.

Design Principles

--Web Writing Resource

How to write online text.

Web Writing that Works


--What is a Wiki?

What is a wiki? The short answer is that "wiki wiki" is Hawaiian for "quick". In terms of online culture, wikiWiki is a composition system, a discussion medium, a repository, a mail system, a chat room, and a tool for collaboration.

Find out more:

What is a Wiki?

--The Wiki Phenomenon

Read about using the Web as a collaborative workspace for open editing and knowledge management.

The Wiki Phenomenon

--NPR Commentary: Wikis

NPR commentator David Weinberger says wikis are one example of "social software," intended to allow people to work together with ease.

Listen to his commentary on wikis is an audio file of All Things Considered:

All Things Considered Audio

Blog Grab Bag

--University Policy Handbook Search Index

This is master index to online faculty, staff, and student handbooks, and it can be quite helpful to academics trying to construct their own policies.

Policy Handbook

--Find the Script that Fits

This database currently includes 12471 plays, 5618 writers, and 326 monologues, searchable by title, author, genre, cast size and gender, length, set complexity, keyword in plot description, and other factors, enabling you to match possible plays to your available budget, cast, and skills.

FInd the Script that Fits

--The Government Performance Project: The Way We Tax: A 50-State Report

This report from Congressional Quarterly's Governing
magazine analyzes "the tax structures and tax management of the 50 states" and evaluates "the way each state raises itsrevenues." It includes an overview of major sources of state revenue (sales taxes, personal income taxes, property taxes,
and corporate taxes) and features a description of the taxstructure for each state. Also provides related reports back to 1999.

Read the report:

Government Performance Project

--Minority Links

Quick links to the latest U.S. Census "data on racial and ethnic populations in the United States." Features browsable facts and statistics on Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, Asian/Pacific Islander, and American Indian/Alaska Native populations in the United States. From the U.S. Census Bureau Public Information Office.

Minority Links

--World Bank Climate Change Team

The World Bank Climate Change Team"provides resources and expertise for the World Bank's participation in international climate change negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and provides technical advice to the World Bank's Global Environment Facility (GEF) Program." This site includes a data base of descriptions of the group's projects, publications, and press releases.

Climate Change Team

--Open Source Toolbox for Activism

This is a useful list of Open Source tools that can be used by "activists to spread the message and promote interaction by enewsletters, forums, blogs, wikis and epetitions."

This is from the blog Designing for Civil Society

Open Source Toolbox

--Holding Politicians Accountable

The site creators "examine recent statements by politicians or political organizations from any political party, and print the claim, test its truthfulness, and cite their sources."


--Social Capitalist Awards

Interesting title, yes?

Read about twenty organizations that are changing the world. This site supplements an article in the January 2004 issue ofFast Company about its Social Capitalist Award winners, people who use "the disciplines of the corporate world to tackle daunting social problems." It features "expanded profiles of the twenty featured organizations, details about their methodology, profiles of theur advisory board members, additional commentary, and ways to donate to the organizations involved."

Social Capitalists

--Nick’s Mathematical Puzzles

Math, anyone?

This site is full of mathematical goodies: geometry, probability, number theory, algebra, calculus, and logic. All require a certain ingenuity, but usually only pre-college math--I think! Explaining how an answer is arrived at is more important than the answer itself, right? To this end, hints, answers, and fully worked solutions are provided, as well as links to relevant mathematical topics.

Nick’s Mathematical Puzzles

--Places Online (Association of American Geographers)

This site provides access to the World's very best place-based Web sites." Most of the sites are prime image and map resources, like Nineteenth Century Mississippi River Scenes, Historic Colorado Photographs, Three Strolls through Paris, Sites and Scenes of Rio de Janeiro. This is an ongoing project; some continents are not as yet well-represented.

Places Online

--Bar Code Art

That's right. The bar code as an art form.

There are neat interactive features here. One example: a Flash project where you enter data about yourself to be bar coded.

Take a look:

Bar Code Art


--FURL(Frame Uniform Resource Locators)

Want to organize all your Web pages?

FURL" is dedicated to making it easier for users to archive and share information on the Web. With a couple clicks, Furl will archive any page (soon including its text and graphics). You can easily find it by browsing your personal directory of web pages or by using the full text search that only searches pages you've archived. It's like having your own Google. "

Try out the beta version of FURL.


Until next week!

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