ruminators' ilk

faculty development, educational technologies, intellectual curieux, info provocations


Faculty Development News This Week:

Academic Community / Networks

--"Creating Community Over Coffee"

This article is from The League for Innovation, January 2004.

Read the introduction:

"Creating a sense of belonging and community is a perennial challenge for nonresidential institutions. Particularly in the community college setting, students often balance multiple priorities, including parenthood and employment, in addition to coursework. Trips to campus are often perfunctory, focused, and as brief as possible. Social connections outside of the classroom may be limited.

In the fall of 2002, the Library and Student Services divisions at Davidson County Community College collaborated on an idea to bring students, faculty, and staff together for food, fun, and a bit of culture over coffee each Friday morning. Since then, Friday Coffee Hour, as it is called, has become an enriching and much enjoyed campus community builder."

Read the entire article:

Creating Community Over Coffee

--"Creating a Culture of Change"

This article is from The Journal of Staff Development, 25 (Spring 2004).

Creating a Culture of Change


--"Living Networked On and Off Line"

This article is from Contemporary Sociology, 28 (November 1999): 648-54.

"Living Networked"

This is a a 12-page PDF file.

--Community Building on the Web

"In addition to being useful, this book is a mirror into the culture and future -- even the anthropology -- of online communities." Jon Katz --

Community Building on the Web


--Relationship Categories

This is from the blog Many2Many.

Relationship Categories


--"Emerging Adulthood"

This article is from American Psychologist, 2002.

Emerging Adulthood"

This is a 10-page PDF file.

--"The Millennials"

Read the article:

"The Millennials"

This is an 11-page PDF file.

--"The Essential Demographics of Today's College Students"

Find out who your students are.

The Essential Demographics


This site is designed to engage the 18-24 age group in politics and activism.


--"Clueless in Academe: An Interview"

"Professors complain that each year’s batch of students are more clueless than the last, but could they be the ones in the dark? John Warner interviews author and academic Gerald Graff on who’s to blame for the failures in our classrooms."

"Clueless in Academe"

--The Pew Hispanic Center

"The Pew Hispanic Center's mission is to improve understanding of the diverse Hispanic population in the United States and to chronicle Latinos' growing impact on the nation. The Center strives to inform debate on critical issues through dissemination of its research to policymakers, business leaders, academic institutions and the media."

Pew Hispanic Center


Problem Solving / Critical Thinking

--Computer Supported Collaborative Argumentation Resource Site

This site is for "researchers and practitioners who are exploring the potential of Computer-Supported Collaborative Argumentation (CSCA) to support knowledge work."

…Collaborative Argumentation Site

--Wicked Problems

"Wicked problems are similar to ill-defined problems, just much worse. Furthermore, solutions are very difficult, if at all, to recognize as such. In other words, stating the problem is the problem."

Read more:

Wicked Problems

--"Wicked Problems and Social Complexity"

Here is a quote to entice you:

"Some problems are so complex that you have to be highly intelligent and well informed just to be undecided about them." -Laurence J. Peter

Read more:

"Wicked Problems and Social Complexity"

This is a 25-page PDF file.

--Argumentation and Critical Thinking Tutorial

"The tutorials consist of a series of tests to help reinforce your knowledge and understanding of some basic concepts associated with making arguments and thinking critically. It specifically focuses on the Classical Logical Structure of Arguments and Informal Argumentative Fallacies."

Argumentation and Critical Thinking Tutorial


--Introduction to Logic

Another tutorial in critical thinking and logic.

Introduction to Logic

Problem Solving and Performance Analysis

"Performance analysis is the first step in any problem-solving or performance-improvement effort. While many human resources and training professionals speak favorably about study prior to action, those words do not typically translate into practice. This site is meant to help by providing information about how to encourage analysis in the organization and what strategies are best for doing it. This online information and coaching tool, designed by...Professor Allison Rossett, San Diego State University, offers planning tips and tools to get things done . . . fast."

First Things Fast


Online Learning

--Co-operative Learning Online

This blog entry considers "specific strategies for promoting cooperative learning online and illustrates how instructional technology can be used to engage students in high levels of interaction. This information will expand the learner’s capacity to incorporate a variety of instructional and assessment strategies."

Cooperative Learning Online


--"Older Learners and Online Education"

Read all about it:

"Older Learners and Online Education"

--"E-portfolios: What's Behind the Hype?"

This article is from iNews: Educational Technology, Student Services, 19 February 2004, University of California, Berkeley.


--"Creating a Sense of Adventure in Online Courses"

Get some ideas for course design.

"Creating a Sense of Adventure"

--The Guerra Scale: Online User Experience

Discussion on the four levels of user-experience.

The Guerra Scale

This reference acquired from ELearningPost, 23 March 2004.

--Evaluating Online Courses

This is from Grant McEwan College, Alberta, Canada.

Criteria for Evaluating Online Courses

Service Learning / Activism

--The Engaged Campus in a Diverse Democracy: Student Learning and Faculty Work

This project, project, funded by a Ford Foundation planning grant, "seeks to strengthen and broaden the work of faculty and schools by identifying and developing practices that will promote and integrate pedagogies for the public good and the scholarship of engagement. This two-year project works with a set of institutions to pilot ways of transforming institutional commitment to civic participation in a diverse democracy. Campus representatives meet to define engagement in the context of their own institutional missions, collectively refine these definitions and explore ways of making campus change to reflect such commitments and practices, and work at the AAHE Summer Academy to develop specific action plans for institutional improvement in the area of civic engagement."

The Engaged Campus

--Go Serv: Cesar Chavez Day, March 31

"Cesar Chavez believed that people have an obligation to contribute to their community. In August 2000, legislation in California was signed to establish March 31st as Cesar Chavez Day of Service and Learning, which engages thousands students annually in service projects to honor Chavez’s life and work."

Go Serv


--Youth '

Youth04 "seeks to synthesize the best of the political Internet and the best of traditional grassroots organizing to transform the role 18-25 year olds will play in the 2004 election."

There is a college curriculum link.

Youth '

Read the Mission Statement:

"Governing is a monthly magazine whose primary audience is state and local government officials: governors, legislators, mayors, city managers, council members and other elected, appointed and career officials. They are the men and women who set policy for and manage the day-to-day operations of cities, counties and states, as well as such governmental bodies as school boards and special districts.

The magazine has a circulation of about 85,000. Besides public officials, its readers include journalists, academics, companies that provide products and services for government, and involved citizens with an interest in the governments closest to them."


--Why Blog?

Read this posting from Many2Many:

Blogs, Creativity, Audiences, and Academics

Blog Grab Bag

--Nursing: The National Institute of Nursing Research

Read this excerpt from the site's Mission Statement:

"The National Institute of Nursing Research supports clinical and basic research to establish a scientific basis for the care of individuals across the life span-from management of patients during illness and recovery to the reduction of risks for disease and disability, the promotion of healthy lifestyles, promoting quality of life in those with chronic illness, and care for individuals at the end of life. This research may also include families within a community context. According to its broad mandate, the Institute seeks to understand and ease the symptoms of acute and chronic illness, to prevent or delay the onset of disease or disability or slow its progression, to find effective approaches to achieving and sustaining good health, and to improve the clinical settings in which care is provided."

National Institute of Nursing Research

--Athletics: SportsCentury

ESPN's SportsCentury, "the definitive review of the people and events of sports in North America in the 1900s, was among the winners of the 59th annual George Foster Peabody Awards, considered the broadcast and cable industry's most prestigious prize."

Take a look:


--Travel: Wiki Travel Guide

"Wikitravel is a project to create a free, complete, up-to-date and reliable world-wide travel guide. It is built in collaboration by Wikitravellers from around the globe."

Wiki Travel Guide

--What is Your Political Personality?

"{This} idea was developed by a political journalist with a university counseling background, assisted by a professor of social history. They're indebted to people like Wilhelm Reich and Theodor Adorno for their ground-breaking work in this field. We believe that, in an age of diminishing ideology, a new generation in particular will get a better idea of where they stand politically -- and the sort of political company they keep."

Take the test:

The Political Compass

--Bird Life International

This site is devoted to conservation and advocacy for birds worldwide. Below is a photo of a Wandering Albatross, threatened by longline fishing.

BirdLife International

Until next week!

Blog editor

Image credits: Tony Palliser/ BirdLife International


Faculty Development News This Week:

--Online Conference: "Surfing the Broadband Wave: The Shape of Things to Come", April 20-22, 2004

Read the promotional literature:

April 20-22, 2004 (1000 GMT)
Pre-conference Dates: April 13-15, 2004
Register Now! (via Secure Server):
Register Here
Faster. Wider. More?
Broadband is the megaway answer to the six-lane punyway, the Godzilla tunnel bypass to the wormhole straw. Broadband is the solution to traffic jams, gridlocks--the answer that will turn the trickle of information into a torrent, the foot-high swell into a tsunami.
As educators, we're on the lineup, sitting on our boards, watching the super set roll in. From first to last, the waves increase in size, each dwarfed by the one behind. The first wave in the set is upon us. It's relatively small. The others, however, are right behind, each increasingly bigger, faster, and more powerful, and the last threatening to turn day into night, shutting out the sun and sky.
We're experiencing the first ripple of the broadband wave that's forming in the distance. Some of us will see the squirt and say, "Ain't no big thing." Others will raise their eyes, point to the massive wall that's blotting out the horizon, and ask, "Oh, yeah?"
Join us at the ninth annual TCC Online Conference to share your take on "Surfing the Broadband Wave: The Shape of Things to Come." This year's conference will focus on broadband's impact on learning and instruction, instructional support, global or International Education and online and hybrid learning. Conference presentations will highlight new technologies, collaborative learning, innovative practices and visions for the future."

The cost is $70.00 (individual fee).

Online Conference


--Types of Knowledge: Tacit, Explicit, Individual, and Social

John Seeley Brown's diagram below is an interesting visual representation of how to organize knowledge into various categories: tacit and explicit, individual and social.

Acquired from BlogKathleen,
18 March 2004.

--"What Makes a Teacher Great?"

This article is from The Chronicle of Higher Education, 12 December 2003.

What Makes a Teacher Great?

--Mailing Lists Dealing with Education

A mail list is similar to an email address, except that when you send a message to a mail list, it is distributed to all subscribed members of that list. This site provides a list of educational mailing lists, along with instructions on how to subscribe.

Merlot Mailing Lists
Mailing Lists

--Learning Communities

What is the benefit of learning in a community? To find out, read:

Learning in Communities

--Conceptual Mapping

Below is a short, introductory article from the digital magazine, 141.
Links to concept mapping are provided in the article.

"Conceptual Maps" by Juan C. Darsteler

Conceptual Maps are simple and practical knowledge representation tools that allow you to convey complex conceptual messages in a clear, understandable way. They facilitate both teaching and learning. Moreover they are represented naturally as graphs. See the conceptual map about conceptual maps in the graphical version at Conceptual Map about Conceptual Maps. Conceptual maps are artifacts for organizing and representing knowledge. Their origin lies in the theories about the psychology of learning by David Ausubel enunciated in the 60s. Their objective is to represent relations between concepts in the form of propositions. Concepts are included within boxes or circles whereas the relations between them are explicated by means of lines connecting their respective boxes. The lines, in turn, have associated words describing the nature of the relation that links the concepts. In this context, Joseph D. Novak in "The Theory Underlying Concept Maps and How To Construct Them" defines concept as "a perceived regularity in events or objects, or records of events or objects, designated by a label." The label of a concept is usually a word. Propositions are "statements about some object or event in the universe, either naturally occurring or constructed. Propositions contain two or more concepts connected with other words to form a meaningful statement." They are also called "semantic units. "Concepts correlated by relations, boxes and linking lines... Doesn't this appear familiar to us? Indeed, like many other things conceptual maps can be represented, and in fact are represented, as graphs (see issue number 137, Conceptual Graphs), where the nodes are concepts and the arcs the relations between them. Conceptual maps are structured in a hierarchical way, where the most general concepts lie in the root of the tree and, and as we descend the structure, we find the more specific ones. Probably the best way to understand them is to see a conceptual map about conceptual maps like the one you can find in the graphical version of this issue. Said map has been made from the one existing in the above mentioned article using the tool CmapTools developed by the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition associated to the West Florida University (USA). This is a freely downloadable tool, very versatile and easy to use. There's also a free, web based, similar tool Spanish Version) in Spanish created in the Universitat Pompeu Fabra of Barcelona, Spain, by C. Rovira that automatically generates the necessary code to include the map in XML format using the Topic Maps standard (see issue 26 about the semantic web: The Semantic Web). It's very commendable to play with these tools to see how easy and instructive it is to put our ideas in the form of conceptual maps. For this type of maps was developed to understand the changes in time of the knowledge that children had of science. Ausubel's idea is that learning takes place thanks to the assimilation of new concepts and propositions into propositional frameworks already existent in the learner's mind. In comparison to the purely rote learning, Ausubel considers that meaningful learning needs three conditions:* The content has to be conceptually clear and presented in a language and with examples the learner can relate to his/her existing knowledge base.* The learner has to have relevant prior knowledge.* The learner must choose to learn meaningfully. These types of tools, when they are well designed, taking into account the context and motivation of their audience, constitute both a teaching and a learning instrument that facilitates understanding and assimilation of the concepts and their relations. Although their origin is bound to learning, their application to Information Visualization configures them as useful tools to convey complex messages in a clear way. I would dare to say that, moreover, they contribute most notably to clarifying the ideas of the one that is building the message.

Visit all the links.


Article acquired from EduResources Weblog, 12 March 2004.

--E-mail Discussion Lists and Electronic Journals

Read about the contribution discussion groups and electronic journals can make in your classroom and in your own scholarship.

E-mail / Electronic Journals

--Link to Search Mailing List Archives

Interested in locating a mailing list in your discipline? Read all about it:

Search Archives

--Using E-mail for International / Cross-Cultural Interaction

International E-Mails Classroom Connections (IECC) is "a free service to help teachers link with partners in other cultures and countries for email classroom pen-pal and other project exchanges. Since its creation in 1992, IECC has distributed over 28,000 requests for e-mail partnerships."

Intercultural E-Mail


--"The Psychology Behind Headphones"

Want some insights into the habits of your "new millennial" students?

This article is from the March 8, 2004 edition of

The Psychology Behind Head Phones

--"Some Uses of Blogs in Education"

This visual / graphic representation of blogs in education comes from Blogtalk

Some Uses of Blogs in Education

--Introduction to Weblogs in Education

This article discusses the use of blogs in education.

Weblogs in Education

--Are You an Analog Instructor Teaching Digital Students?

See this article on Marc Prensky's site devoted to learning philosophy on games, students and education.

Marc Prensky

See his slide presentation, too:

Prensky Presentation


--The Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: Annotated Bibliography

This bibliography is from The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and is a compilation of almost fifty annotated citations grouped into three areas: Definition, Examples, and Resources. A few of the citations are hyperlinked to web versions, but most are available in print only.

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

--Using Listservs for Professional Development

Links for professional engagement.

Listservs for Professional Development

--"Faculty Development and Learning Object Technology"

Read the introduction to this paper:

"The following paper begins with a story, the story of a lived experience that illustrates the mismatch between faculty and technology experts' understandings of learning object technology. It then takes a look at faculty perspectives, to show that moving from the traditional approach in content creation to developing learning objects requires a paradigm shift for faculty content developers. Recognizing the changes that faculty face, and understanding their insights regarding new learning technologies, gives faculty support staff an opportunity to "put on" the faculty perspective. This "putting on" activity provides technical support staff with the mental models necessary to support faculty in "bridging the gap" between traditional content development activities and the creation and development of learning object technologies."

This article is from Teaching Scholars Forum, 10 (February 2004).

Faculty Development and Learning Object Technology

Link acquired from Eduresources Weblog, 12 March 2004.

--Civic Engagement Resources

This site provides resources for community service and activism.

Civic Engagement Resources

Course Design

--Lessons Learned from the Hybrid Course Project

"This article reports on the most significant observations from the Hybrid Course Project and provides "Lessons Learned" about hybrid course design and teaching for: faculty interested in developing their own hybrid courses; faculty developers interested in helping instructors create hybrid courses; and academic administrators interested in supporting hybrid courses."

Hybrid Course Project

--"Introduction to Hybrid Courses"

This article provides an overview of hybrid course design.

Introduction to Hybrid Courses

--Design Concepts

Don Norman is one of the gurus of twenty-first century design. This article discusses his design philosophy.

Don Norman

--Digital Video

"This site is dedicated to helping educators with the ins and outs of digital video, from Pre-K to PhD. If you're an educator trying to get started with digital video, it can be overwhelming. I work with DV at the Instructional Technology Center in the College of Education at Georgia State University in Atlanta. I teach the basics of DV to all sorts of educators - undergraduate majors in education who are training to work with preschoolers to PhD's who want to post a video clip of some best practices on a web site."

DV for Teachers

I acquired this link fromBlogIt

--ACOT Continuum

"The ACOT Continuum, created by Alan Devine, Maricopa Community College, demonstrates the phases teachers go through in using and integrate technology in their classrooms. Use this information sheet to decide which phase of the continuum individuals are at, and then use the appropriate action steps to help them progress to the next level. Each phase has certain characteristics. Decide which ones describe each individual's activities."

ACOT Continuum


Libraries and Information Management

--"Thinking Beyond Digital Libraries: Designing Information Strategy for the Next Decade"

This Conference, held in Beifield, Germany, February 3-5, 2004, now has presentations available online.

Thinking Beyond

This link was acquired from the blog Open Access News, 13 March 2004.

Blog Grab Bag

--National League for Nursing

This site is devoted to lifelong learning for nursing faculty.

National League

--Frederick Chopin

This site, in Polish and English, is dedicated to the music of Chopin.

Polonaise, anyone?


--Searching the Internet for Images

This site is a treasure chest for digital images.

Searching the Internet for Images

--Simple, Interactive Statistical Analysis

Try this one out with your students!

Statistical Analysis

--PowerPoint Usability

PowerPoint presentations have been getting a bad rap lately. Read this interview for another perspective.

PowerPoint Usability


"On 15 March, 2004, astronomers from Caltech, Gemini Observatory, and Yale University announced the discovery of the coldest, most distant object known to orbit the sun. The object was found at a distance 90 times greater than that from the sun to the earth -- about 3 times further than Pluto, the most distant known planet. The discovery was made on the Samuel Oschin Telescope at the Palomar Observatory east of San Diego on 14 November 2003 by the team of Mike Brown (Caltech), Chad Trujillo (Gemini Observatory) and David Rabinowitz (Yale)."

Read the scientific paper about this discovery:


This is a12-page PDF file.

--Distance Education on the Rise

The article below is from the March 9, 2004 edition of Eduventures, one of the leading independent research firms focused on learning markets.

...Online Education Post-Secondary Wave of the Future....

This link acquired from Bruce Landon's Weblog for Students, 15 March 2004.

--Lessons from the Cutting Edge

This article considers why is so successful from a variety of perspectives.

This article is from Fast, 69 (April 2003):74.

How Google Grows...

--Workforce Connections

Take a look at this.

"Introducing the U.S. Department of Labor's Workforce Connections - a set of Web-based tools that empower non-technical individuals to create, acquire, share and control content in real-time.

Workforce Connections is the first tool of its kind to be licensed by the U.S. government free of charge to public and private sector organizations.

Learn how your organization can use these tools to easily build and maintain:

Traditional Web sites

Online courses or presentations

Community of practice Web sites

Online coaches

Knowledge repositories"

Workforce Connections


This link acquired from Eduresources Weblog, 12 March 2004.

Until next week!

Blog editor


Faculty Development News This Week:

Faculty Development

--Teacher Learning

This is Chapter 8 from the book / report How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School (National Academy Press, 1999).

Teacher Learning

--A Librarian's Choice of Faculty Development on the Internet

Click for a treasure trove of resources.

...Librarian's Guide to Faculty Development..



--"Responding to Student Papers Effectively and Efficiently"

This article is from the University of Toronto, Canada.

Responding to Student Papers....

--Emotional Intelligence

What is emotional intelligence, and why is it important? This article will tell you.

Emotional Intelligence

This is a 14-page PDF file.

--Collaborative Learning

This site is sponsored by the National Institute for Science Education, and although it is intended for middle school and high school students, the collaborative learning principles presented are applicable in a college setting.

Collaborative Learning

--Active Learning

This site is from San Diego State University.

Active Learning

Self-Directed Learning

The importance of intellectual autonomy for students.

Self-Directed Learning

This is a 31-page PDF file

--"How Experts Differ from Novices"

This is Chapter Two from the book How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School.

How Experts Differ from Novices

--Peer- Led Team Learning (PLTL)

What is peer-led team learning?

"The PLTL Workshop model engages teams of six to eight students in learning sciences, mathematics and other undergraduate disciplines guided by a peer leader. The PLTL Workshop model provides an active learning experience for students; creates a leadership role for undergraduates; engages faculty in a creative new dimension of instruction."

Peer5-Led Team Learning

Reinventing Undergraduate Education

Although this report is directed to the undergraduate experience at research institutions, its recommendations have applications to all post-secondary institutions.

Reinventing Undergraduate Education

--It's a Start!

A professor at North Carolina State University provides some insights into launching a course at the beginning of a term.

It's a Start!

Online Instruction

The Theory and Practice of Online Learning

The Theory and Practice of Online Learning, edited by Terry Anderson and Fathi Elloumi, "is concerned with assisting providers of online education with useful tools to carry out the teaching and learning transactions online. It presents, in an easily readable form, the theory, administration, tools, and methods of designing and delivering learning online."

The entire book is available online:

Theory and Practice

--Harvard's Education with New Technologies (ENT)

"The ENT is a networked community designed to help educators develop powerful learning experiences for students through the effective integration of new technologies."


--Electronic Class Discussion

Some advice on how to conduct class discussion online.

Electronic Class Discussion

How to be a Good Moderator

This site has applications for online classes and Web site maintenance,

The Moderator's Homepage


--Web Instruction Online

A harbinger of things to come: online teachers for hire, a la carte.

Register any time to work at your own pace with an online instructor who specializes in Web design.

Web Instruction Online


--"Disability in Higher Education: From Person-Based to Interaction-Based"

Read the article abstract:

"The meaning of disability is analyzed from a conventional and an alternative perspective. Results of this analysis are applied to such higher education issues as institutional role, pedagogical expectations, and program quality. The article advances a view of disability as interaction-specific rather than personspecific, as arising when the nature of the academic task or instructional environment fails to support adequately the learning characteristics of the student. Within this view, learning environments (including teachers) have a primary influence in creating or preventing educational disability. Implications of this position for all students in higher education, not only those conventionally designated as disabled, are explored."

This article is from the Electronic Journal of Excellence in College Teaching, 5 (1).

Disability in Higher Education

--First-Generation College Students

This is a bibliography of resources relating to first-generation college students and their college experience.

First-Genereation College Students

--Demographics of Success

This article is from the Community College Review,Summer 2003.

Demographics of Success

"An Examination of Student Cheating in the Two-Year College"

This article is from Community College Review, Summer 2003.

An Examination of Student Cheating in the Two-Year College


"Is Accreditation Accountable: The Continuing Conversation Between Accreditation and the Federal Government

This report is from the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

Is Accreditation Accountable.

This is a 29-page PDF file.

Blog Grab Bag

--Philosophy Series

This series in philosophy is on a radio show called The Connection, from WBUR, Boston, affiliated with Boston University.

Click to access the audio files:
Summer Series on Western Philosophy

--Copyright Resources Online

This site is from Yale University Libraries.

Copyright Resources Online

--Ethics: Case Studies

This site is from Utah Valley State College.

Ethics: Case Studies

--"Earth Science as a Vehicle for Illuiminating the Boundary Between the Known and the Unknown"

This article is adapted from the Journal of Geological Education, 43 (1995):138-40.

Earth Science as a Vehicle for Illuminating the Boundary Between the Known and the Unknown

This is an 8-page PDF file.

--"Where are We: An Interactive Multimedia Tool for Helping Students Translate from Maps to Reality and Vice Versa"

This article discusses the application of a powerful map metaphor in a computer software program for organizing large bodies of complex knowledge.

Where Are We?

This a is a 10-page PDF file.

ABU: la Bibliotheque Universelle

This French site provides access to public domain French texts.


Until next week!

Blog editor