Dr. Paul Leslie

Dr. Paul Leslie

Tuesday, 10 October 2017 00:17

Discussion boards in D2L

Discussion boards are a critical element in the courses you are taking at Queens University. In some courses they comprise up to 50% of the grade (e.g., 851).

In D2L, the grade book tool allows for a relatively easy means of reviewing individual students' contributions to the discussion boards. In the instructor view, I can go to the the Class Progress section and then view all activity by each student.

The first screen shows the student list with the following information for each student:

d board 4

This screen shows me that the student has visited 34 of the 52 pages of the course - not so excited at this point. The main value of this screen is the graph showing the regularity and frequency of logins. More logins for a shorter amount of time is far preferable to fewer logins for longer periods. The nature of the discussion boards as an asynchronous communication tool suggests that greater benefit will be had from short logins to check on the latest comments from classmates. MOst courses do use objectives and so that information is not relevant.

 I can then click on any student and see the following screen:

d board 3

For example, the above screen shows the first three discussion board topics for PME 851. I can see how many posts you read, how many you made, or "threads started", and how many replies you made to your classmates. The replies are as important, if not more so than the initial comments.

I can then open each individual board and see what has transpired.

d board 1

I then can click on each topic and see the list of titles and various other data for each individual entry. The arrows indicate the replies and the quotation marks indicate an initial post or thread. I then can click on each topic and see the list of titles and various other data for each individual entry.

d board 2

Given that I read almost every post and reply, I do not need to open every one. However, I can open whichever ones I want to get an idea of the content of the replies and the initial post. 

In this manner, I can scroll through and get a very clear understadning of everyone's level of contribution to the boards. 

The following are some comments provided to students on  the points and issues of the assignment. The assignment was graded out of 4. About half received a 3/4 and the other half 4/4.

851 assignment 1 feedback

Context of assignment:

You have elaborated on a challenging question that includes cultural issues and a specific curriculum. Very interesting! I wonder if there is a bit of confusion over the actual issues here. On the one hand, you mention that as a biology teacher, you feel it is your responsibility to teach students how their bodies work. While I agree, that in itself is a personal or cultural issue and some may feel, for example, that they are too young, or that this is the responsibility of someone else.

On the other hand, the main issue you discuss is _____________. These issues might not be specifically Biology, but perhaps cross over into other subjects. Where do you as a teacher delineate between your specifics responsibilities and the larger curriculum?

Your discussion of getting the students to see each other as individuals and to appreciate the struggles that individuals face is a great way to show the similarities between people. I wonder how you get them to understand the differences as well? I would not want to gloss the differences in favour of the similarities. In terms of Cushner, this would perhaps not really help students adapt as much as they might. The differences will remain and that is part of the adaptation.

I did appreciate your comments on receiving new faculty into the school. However, I would like to read about some more detailed efforts to work with the homogenous body of students. Also, can you reference one of the readings into your work? How would Cushner’s IDI be measured with students in your school?

I think your approach is quite interesting. Have you tried using texts from other western countries as well? How would issues differ between Canada and the US for example? The US and the UK?

I would also be interested to know how the students respond. Do they seem to grasp the complexities? I understand this was a very short assignment, but for next time, a bit more focus on some of these questions would be great.

I appreciate your reference to diversity as individuals, and not being limited to culture. You are correct to assert that culture is merely the most obvious element of diversity.

I appreciate your references to differentiation as well, as a teaching strategy to support diversity and to help students to explore their own understanding of a topic and then have the ability to share that new understanding with their diverse classmates.

Cushner

I wonder how well your students would rate on the IDI from Cushner’s article? Can you give that some thought? I would also like to see a sentence or two about how you might blend the eastern need for summative assessments with the western desire to talk and interact in groups. There would be some interesting ways of offering the students a progress check on their development that might suffice for a summative assessment. This would then have a good blend of formative feedback as well.

I think you have touched on a couple of very interesting points. Cushner’s point that students think the world is getting worse while their own personal issues are fine indicates that students do not make connections between their own actions and the world. There is a disconnect there. What do you think?

I think your use of the _________ issue is a great focal point for your writing. Well done! I also liked your references to Cushner. You have referenced the article very well and pulled out the most salient issues.

It is clear and you have articulated a solid argument and understanding of Cushner’s article. You note that some issues are not good or bad, just different. This is interesting because it highlights the notion of evaluation versus assessment. We can assess something by noting the elements of the situation. We then assign a value to it once we have the facts. So, in the context of your example on plagiarism, the notion of plagiarism is generally considered to be bad. How do you reconcile this with the notion of being different?

Writing

I would ask that you focus on your writing. You have a very conversational style which makes for a more lengthy and wordy text.

Also, try to be a bit less conversational and more concise. This is very much an issue of academic style, which may be western based, but very international nevertheless.

Also, while you included several articles in your references, you did not actually mention them in your text. You will need to refer to them specifically in the body of the text in order to include them in your references.

You should try to reference one or two readings in your work to give you some focus and provide the reader (me) with a context for your writing. This will be much more important in longer pieces of writing.

General

This is a compelling piece. Very interesting. Your discussion of gender is very timely and I think that gender within culture often gets overlooked and women’s issues are often lost in the larger mix of cultural discussion. For example, that women in Saudi Arabia can now drive is only one small issue in a much larger gender gap in that country.

The other point is that you talk about being more inclusive although you do not use that term. I strongly encourage you to look up the concept of inclusion with regards to technology and in particular, special needs.

You clearly have given a lot of thought to multiculturalism in your career and you have given a clear, concise and highly articulate accounting of your school, environment and the efforts being made within to explore cultural differences and diversity.

 

Monday, 02 October 2017 06:30

832 - Feedback on 'My Connections'

Below are excerpts from my feedback to students on their concept maps regarding community  and curricular connections.

Comment: You have done a great job in the text to highlight the various connections and to relate the readings to the work you are highlighting. This is a great start to a literature review for a project down the road and I encourage you to keep your written work available in a word doc for easy retrieval. There is no issue with reusing some of this work and building upon it.

With your concept map, I would suggest trying to reduce the amount of text and using what text you do have to highlight the concepts involved and to show the interrelatedness and overlapping nature of the various concepts.

For example, instead of writing "Social action is an important part of the curriculum", which we see in the reading materials, just say 'social action' and then try to show where else in the activities there is an overlap or relation to social action.

Comment:  Try to make some of the connections between the elements more explicit. For example, you have one node that highlights 'communicating with others' and another node that shows 'modes of communication'. Can you indicate which modes would be most suitable for which types of communication? This might be an interesting exercise for you and your classmates.

If you look at some of the other areas as well, you might see some efficiencies in your map.

Try to use an online mapping tool that can use collapsible nodes. This makes reading much easier and you will find that you can edit and share much easier.

Comment:  Very nice work! I would suggest trying to order the elements to reflect their relationships. Perhaps a more circular design instead of a linear hierarchy might help with showing connections. For example, you have curriculum and then students which is of course a connection. However, the curriculum is often designed by the school, board or community and then enacted by teachers for the students. How might you reflect that connection in your map?

Similarly, the technology has its own node whereas it might be better used as a facilitating tool and be interspersed throughout the map to show where technology can support the great work you are doing. For example, what technology are they using to question and analyse? What tools do they use to collect data, record experiences for reflection and the demonstrate their competency with a particular skill for assessment purposes?

Your text is also well written. I would argue that the point you make in the second paragraph about students wanting to know the purpose of their studies is of paramount importance and that this could be the introductory paragraph. We are talking about "Making Connections"!

Comment:  I always wonder about the idea of letting students set the curriculum. Of course, this is tempered with curriculum issues that filter in from society, boards and other ministries that have a stake in what our children learn. 

How do you manage the demands of a 'state' curriculum with the needs and desires of the students and maintain a level of robustness and rigour in the learning?

Another question that arises from this is the issue of students meeting those from similar backgrounds. I wonder about the idea of meeting people from different backgrounds so that we can increase and improve our ability to appreciate those that are different from your own experiences? What do you think about that?

Comment:  It was interesting to read about the need to be explicit about the concepts and to highlight exactly what they were doing. I think this is essential for everyone and perhaps your students are just being more open about their needs.

There is a concept called "tolerance for ambiguity" that I have examined at length in the past. Language teachers in particular should be familiar with this concept. It speaks about the ability of individuals to function without all relevant information. For example, with language learners, how well can they understand a communication even though they do not understand all of the words and expressions being used.

Comment:  This is a wonderful piece of work. You have really captured the range of elements needed to make a curriculum and activities as your outline come to life and work for students.

In reference to your classmate's comment, I would like to ask you to reflect a bit further on the issue of student led curriculum and how that can be aligned with what I am sure is a rigorous curriculum.

How do you maintain rigour in such a curriculum in order to ensure that students meet assessment requirements? 

Comment:  Perhaps instead of the questions, I wonder if a sequence of actions that highlight your process might smooth the connections and provide a greater ability to make those connections? Maybe not, but I am just thinking 'out loud'.

Then, the extra text around the map might be incorporated into the written accompaniment and that whole thing might be just a bit more concise. Your work is excellent, but I am just trying to find a way to make it more accessible.

I would also suggest bringing out the connection between the content and the application and understanding of the content in a holistic sense. You highlight the issue of getting the parents' buy in in order to lessen the expectations of memorizing content. However you do need to have the content and the activities you are suggesting make the content more relevant. You do capture this in section 3 of the map, but I would argue that this is the central motivation for all of your work. Make it stand out!

Friday, 29 September 2017 22:45

851 - Personal Profile

851 responses to module one: I have read through your profiles with great interest and thought I would share some of them here with everyone. My comments to those questions might help to give us a focus for our coming work. I have de-identified the comments as much as possible. First of all, I am sorry for my late start with the course. I just arrived in Miami after 9 days waiting to be evacuated from Dominica. The evacuation process itself took 3 days from the time we left the island to arriving in Miami at 3 Am on the 28th.

Comment: I have worked in many different countries over the last 20 years and I can certainly understand the issues you face in getting situated in a new country. Between internet connections, phones and rental agreements, it can be quite a chore. You mentioned wanting to understand the relationship between culture and teaching methodologies. Teaching is very much about human interaction and so we will look at how culture impacts on our ability to communicate with each other. We will also consider what might be considered universal truths about interacting with each other. For example, in every culture the teacher is still the teacher and the student is still the student. That ‘power’ relationship does not change.

Comment: You note that people have told you that it may be difficult to move back to Canada the longer you are away. I have been away for more than 20 years and can attest that it could be difficult, however perhaps not for the reasons you may suspect. It is true that Canadian institutions may not value your foreign experience as much as Canadian experience, but I hope that that perception is changing. However, from a personal point of view you also may find it very difficult to go back to Canada after being abroad for many years.

The concept of reverse culture shock is very true yet unexpected by many people. The place you have in your mind is not the place that exists now, and so when you return to Canada to live you may find it to be very different than the place you have been visiting for the last so many years. I can assure you visiting a place and living in that same place are two very different experiences.

Comment: We will investigate the question of how cultural tendencies impact the way students participate in education. I think your question of how could Educators analyze and plan accordingly is very challenging. In my experience, we often do our planning and then help students adapt to the way the course has been structured. The culture within which the institution is set and within which the education is being offered has an overriding influence on the planning and development of any course. We then find that the challenge is in helping students to adapt to the new culture within which they find themselves and to adapt to the varying cultural mores of the students that they are surrounded by.

Comment: It is very interesting to note that the previous student is working in Canada with foreign students whereas as you are Canadian working in a foreign country with local students of that country. So right there, we already have two distinct cultural situations within which we can explore various issues when planning curriculum. It is very interesting to note the cultural background of the teachers with whom you are working at the University. They will become a great source of inspiration for you during this course. Although they are all from Western backgrounds, you may be surprised to see how different their views are on many educational issues. I strongly encourage you to discuss some of the issues we discussed in our course with your colleagues.

Comment: I encourage you and all of your classmates in this course to make every effort to answer the questions posed to you by your classmates. On that note, I encourage all of our students to read my post about commenting on comments. The value of this course mainly lies in exploring the thoughts of our classmates. I hope to contribute to your understanding as the teacher and instructor of this course, however there are far more of you as students than there are of me as a teacher.

Comment: There is a very interesting article by an author called Keltchermans, in which he states that, “it matters who the teacher is”. In your case, it is very interesting to know that you have two different cultures in your home from which to draw and inform your teaching. This most certainly will give you a wider perspective and better understanding of your students. One thing that you may notice about Canada in contrast to many other countries is that the Canadian culture is a ‘multi’ culture. Many countries are quite homogeneous and pride themselves on their “country-ness”, whereas Canadians often pride themselves on their non-Canadian-ness, or their independence. These are very powerful cultural issues that have a great effect on the dynamics of any classroom.

Comment: It is funny to read the interactions between you and _____. The grass is always greener...

Comment: You comment on creative and critical thinking. These are two aspects of education that are often highly controversial. There are countries where critical thinking is frowned upon. This implies that things are not already great. So, one question is, how can we help individuals to think critically, or in other words, think independently, or think for themselves, in a manner that is helpful to their community rather than divisive. Thinking creatively is also often thinking critically, but it may also entail thinking differently. Again, how do we encourage students to do this in a positive and constructive manner? As policy and curriculum designers, how do we design courses that encourage such thinking? Even in a liberal minded culture, there are set ideals that people do not like to question. For example, is a benevolent monarchy (ruling family) such as the UAE better than our western democracies? Look at some of our current leaders... You spark two questions for me. One is rather general. You ask about international education and the connection to culture. I find that with the internationalization of the of the world, we need to be more specific about the notion of culture. For example, we think of China as a monolithic state of 1.4 billion people. But in fact, it is a conglomerate of very different cultures, some of which would not consider themselves 'Chinese'.

On another note, as a science teacher, how would you react to being asked to fit creationism into your course? This is a cultural issue that we might find right in our own backyards. As a Nova Scotian, you might not think this is rational because we have had a strict separation of religion and education since the 1890s, however in other provinces such as Ontario where there is a Catholic school board, how might that fly?

Friday, 29 September 2017 22:17

832 - Email your instructor

I have received a number of great questions from our classmates and thought I wold share some of them here with everyone. The questions and my comments to those questions will help to give us a focus for our coming work. I have de-identified the questions as much as possible.

First of all, I am sorry for  my late start  with the course. I just arrived in Miami after 9 days waiting to be evacuated from Dominica. The evacuation process itself took 3 days from the time we left the island to arriving in Miami at 3 Am on the 28th.

Question: My question at this time is, what strategies can be used so that individual educators with different educational/life philosophies find common ground to create connections between their classroom environments?

Comment: I have worked for many years in multicultural institutions facing just that sort of issue. Your opinions and beliefs are important, but must be tempered to the prevailing environment.

Question: I would like to know how can we as educators ensure that learning is extended to the home environment and that parents are more actively involved in the process?

Comment: I think the connections between home and the school are critical, especially for younger students, but even with high school students. There are extremes of not caring and caring too much, but in my experience most parents could be a bit more involved. I will say now that technology is a great tool to help parents be more involved and share just that little more information that they need to be interested, but not overwhelmed.

Question: I teach an internship and careers program, so my focus is on exploratory learning and reflections activities. My concern is the most of what I teach is outside of the classroom.

Comment: Your focus is great as that is the way forward for a lot of medical education and for competency based assessment, especially for professionals. Think about portfolios and how professionals and others can capture their experiences through electronic portfolios in order to share a running commentary on their work.

Question: I am very excited to take this course for several reasons, but the main one being the use of digital technology such as video and Skype to improve the learning experience for my students. The question I have about the course is: For the big assignment (35%)-Designing a technology-enhanced Connected Classroom Experience, are we able to show this design to other students in the class via Skype, Youtube, or Adobe Connect?

Comment: You are on the right track for incorporating technology in to your project, however in this medium, I think you need to consider asynchronous technologies. Consider why we use a discussion board and there are no synchronous activities. For your connected-classroom experience, you need to consider very carefully the ability of others to participate in real time. If it is a blended course with a classroom full of kids, that is one experience. If you want to connect with others in real-time, that is another experience.

Question: How might the academic readings and discussions in this course support my ability to make sound decisions and ask good questions about how technology is utilized by the staff and students at my school?

Comment: Your question is useful and incorporates the materials for the course. I encourage you to also ask your colleagues and students for their input. Their concerns and ‘deal-breakers’ are the real issues you will need to overcome and these may really surprise you.

Question: I look forward to learning more about how technology can both improve and be detrimental to home/school relationships. The school community I work in is very tight knit, however we also have very little interaction with those outside our school community. I am curious to know how this is something we can build upon, and what I can learn from the experience of others in the course. I have a strong interest in communication, so I am looking forward to the communication element of this course, and how it can build connections if used properly, and how the decrease in face to face interactions impacts this.

Comment: I can feel your desire to adopt new tools and your hesitancy in doing so. This is a tension that can be useful is making sure you are using tools that will do what you need them to do – that will serve your purposes, not create purposes simply based on their functionality. One issue that I have with technology, despite my love for it in Education, is that we sometimes get lost in the shiny things and lose sight of our actual needs. This is far easier to do that we realize.

I find that people attach values to new or different ideas before they understand them. This inevitably leads to discord and discomfort. My secret is to consider ideas for their own worth before any evaluation (think e-VALUE-ation). In this way, we can see the idea for its own usefulness or not, without clouding our judgement with preconceptions.

Question: I just wondered how you thought my experience may be impacted by not having an active role in a classroom while taking the course.

Comment: Well, this is a great challenge for you to finds ways to be connected to the community from home. It may not be your preferred way, but it is a common and increasingly desirable way to learn and study so that we can make the most of our lives.

For example, I teach online and am currently in Miami. I would love to teach this course F2F, but that would mean giving up my amazing life in Dominica and missing out on the adventures of surviving a Cat 5 hurricane and being evacuated on a Russian cruise ship!

So, my advice is to embrace your decisions and explore how technology can enhance both your ability to be a parent and to support students.

Question: I'll now be creating a classroom setting for clients. I think my questions creating a technology-enabled classroom for adult learners? Can I use this one on one? How do I use this when I'm seeing different clients and learners each day? My goal with be "How to implement technology-driven learning in a non-traditional classroom setting for adult learners" and "gaining leadership and applying in a professional setting" ... this feels very big and broad but I feel I can begin to pull it apart as the course continues.

Comment: I think you have a marvelous opportunity to explore some truly cutting-edge research into competency based education with adults and professionals. I am working on the use of electronic portfolios to support competency based activities and demonstrations of competency. This is highly relevant for medical professionals including residents and physicians, and they are common already in the nursing profession. I think you could explore the use of similar tools to support your clients and get them to be able to track their own activities and the use these reflections as a means of assessing their performance.

In terms of collaborative learning and a student-centered approach, I encourage you to explore some of the work around Appreciative Inquiry and portfolios for demonstrations of competency. These two areas provide a focus for interacting with others, and then the tools you will need to actually do this work will be easier to chose from among the many etools out there on the internet.

Question: The question that I want to investigate concerns ways that I can design and facilitate “authentic collaborative learning” that engages students. I can envision this course supporting me in articulating, facilitating and implementing a connected environment where students, staff and families are involved in the learning process.

Comment: I did a lot of work in Sharjah with professional teachers from Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Lebanon, and of course the UAE. I let them guide the process as I was unaware of the many challenges they faced in collaborating and working with internet-based tools. Once they were able to articulate their needs to me, we could then explore the tools needed to get the work done.

Question: Are there experiences or technology tools that are appropriate for connecting a sensitive culture?

Comment: Well, you pose some interesting questions. I have spent years working in the UAE with female students and teachers in girls-only high schools and so am acutely aware of the concerns of a sensitive culture.

One issue that is always difficult is the need to acknowledge the individuality of our students. This is far more problematic that it might appear. How do we let students grow and be individuals while trying to instill community values? The challenge is to be honest and open. Ultimately, it is about trust – trusting the students to make the right decisions of their own free will - trusting them to evaluate information on their own without our influence – trusting them to be their own person.

These are difficult challenges -there is no way around it. I look forward to working with you on these. This is at the very core of the purpose of education – to set us free.

Saturday, 09 September 2017 01:17

Ross U and Queens U

There is a great link between RUSM and Queens University through their medical education programs. Queens has just shared an article about their recent innovation to move to a Competency Based Medical Education (CBME) program for residents. This article is actually a follow up to a previous article that describes in greater detail the program and background. I will be working with our own program in medical education and so hope to learn and benefit from my connections to both universities. 

Please look below for a video interview with students from Queens University.

In both PME 832 and 851, you will be required to contribute to several discussion board topics. These are listed in your respective syllabuses. For those of you who have taken PME 801, the boards were required but not graded directly. For my classes, I did look carefully at what contributions you made to the boards and took this into account when deciding upon a grade. However, in these two courses, you will be graded on each board individually.

So, I would like to discuss my expectations for these boards a bit more thoroughly. I ask you to read about the community of inquiry, (https://coi.athabascau.ca/). You can peruse the site and if you have not heard of this model you really must read a few of the articles listed therein.

In brief, the model highlights how we first must make the community (your classmates) feel safe through social presence – making sure everyone understands your  perspective, context and the purpose of your post. This is not always as obvious as you may think. It also requires that you give (literally) permission to others to challenge you, and to feel confident to ask questions of your classmates about their posts. As with any classroom, f2f or virtual, we all must let each of us (the participants) place themselves in the community and in a context where they feel they can contribute.

 COI model front

The next step is the notion of teaching presence. This is the guiding force of the community. These are the questions that we ask each other and more importantly, the answers that we give. I will ask you challenging questions, quite simply to challenge you. Usually, I expect an answer. You are expected to ask questions of your peers. And when asked, you are expected to answer. In other words, to make the most of this discussion board and community, I charge you with asking pointed and direct questions of each other in the posts. Students must ask other students questions. There is only one of me and many of you. This is to push each other forward in the quest for knowledge.

 Once we have social presence and teaching presence, then we will get cognitive presence, the creation of new knowledge, and not before.

So, let me reiterate that not only is it appropriate for you to ask each other questions, but it is imperative that you do. Teaching presence not only comes from the teacher (me), but comes in the form of directing questions and inquiry which is what gives the community direction and guidance for sharing our cognitive presence. Social presence is that which makes us comfortable doing so.

That is why we are here.

Wednesday, 06 September 2017 05:58

Dominica Teaching and Learning - Initial Goals

I have started a new challenge with Ross U and the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL). For me, this is a foray into medical education and the concomitant challenges of covering a vast collection of content while ensuring a holistic social construction of knowledge.

My initial focus will be on how to help the faculty and colleagues make their thinking visible to each other. Ross employs the MS Office 365 suite of tools, which facilitates access to information across the institution. While I favour the Google Suite of tools for personal use, I support the use of institutional tools for the support, future-proofing and access that they provide

One task will be to move toward the use of a departmental platform housed within the larger institutional platform. This will connect us with our colleagues outside of the department and give us a presence among those very same colleagues to promote our activities.

 A concurrent task will be to examine strategies that will raise the 'teaching' profile of the CTL. One long term plan is to contribute to the design and implementation of the Medical Education Teaching Certificate (METC). The target audience for this certificate are those who wish to pursue and enhance their roles within  medical education. Another goal is to promote the ability of our colleagues to make their thinking visible to each other. This goal will be pursued in one instance through modeling good practices, and through another by encouraging others to communicate with us through the institutional tools noted above.

To paraphrase a comment I shared with a colleague this week, I think adopting a mission statement, vision for action and perhaps a philosophy of education, gives focus to our work by helping to underpin our individual goals. My stated philosophy that, "Education is a community affair", is evident in each of my goals outlined above. In each instance, the underlying notion is to create an educational community by allowing each of us a means and set of tools to communicate with each other.

pleslie card back

Monday, 04 September 2017 10:19

PME 851 - Syllabus - Fall 2017

GDPI/PME 851 - Culture, Curriculum and Pedagogy

Instructor: Dr. Paul Leslie

Assistant Professor, Faculty of Education, Queens University

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Assignments

Grade Item

Score

Discussions

0 / 50

 

Personal Profile

0 / 5.56

 

Conversations about Inquiry

0 / 5.56

 

Resources for Promoting Cultural Awareness and Diversity

0 / 5.56

 

The Role of Education

0 / 5.56

 

The Role of Technology

0 / 5.56

 

The Six C's

0 / 5.56

 

Pedagogical Preparation for International Teaching

0 / 5.56

 

My Classroom and Its Cultural Norms

0 / 5.56

 

Linguistically Diverse Teaching Contexts

0 / 5.56

Assignments

 

Culture and Context: Navigating Cultural Diversity

0 / 10

Identity as a Teacher

0 / 10

Final Assignment Infographic

0 / 30

Discussion Boards

Each student is required to complete assigned discussion posts every week as well as respond to the posts made by other classmates. There are 9 discussions in total that will add up to a score out of 50%.

Each module also includes questions that will prompt your thinking and reflection of your professional context in relation to that topic. You are not meant to post all the answers to these questions, but choosing a few could help you inform the topics you discuss in relation to the readings. 

Online participation (during entire course): We expect all students to participate actively in the online discussions on OnQ. By participating in a timely fashion in each module, students contribute to the collective learning of the class as well as their own individual learning. 

Participation can consist of: 

  • A compelling quote from the readings
  • A reaction to the content
  • Discussion questions raised by the text or videos
  • Sharing relevant research studies of interest
  • Providing examples of interesting classroom/teaching practices
  • Reflection on your own experiences related to cross-cultural learning/teaching
  • Contributing to the discussion of key issues that emerge from our shared work 
Assignments

There are three assignments that will add up to 50% of the total grade.

Formative Assessments

There are also two formative assessments in which you will reflect on your progress to date. These are not graded, but are mandatory assignments. They provide you an opportunity to speak frankly to the instructor about your thoughts and comments on the course, how the course is serving your needs, and your performance.

Course Syllabus

Course Overview: For a full overview of the Course Outline, see below. You will find an outline of the module names, topics, expected duration, learning activities, and assignment tasks.

There are five modules in GDPI/PME 851– Culture, Curriculum, and Pedagogy. The course is structured in blocks with reading weeks in-between to give some time to read the course materials. On reading weeks, no online posts to OnQ are required. 

Module

Topic

Duration

Assessment

Module 1

Week 1

Sept. 18th -24th

Introduction to PME 851 and our Community

1 week

 

Discussion Board posts:

  • Personal Profile 
  • Conversations About Inquiry

DUE: END OF WEEK 1 – Sept. 24th

Module 2

Week 2

Sept. 25th – Oct 1st

Culture and Curriculum in International Contexts

1 week 

Discussion Board Post:

  • Resources for Promoting Cultural Awareness and Diversity

Dropbox Assignment:

  • Culture and Context: Navigating Cultural Diversity

DUE: END OF WEEK 2 – Oct 1st

Reading week

Week 3 – Oct. 2 – 9th (Thanksgiving)

Read ahead or catch up. Late assignments may be considered if posted during reading week

Module 3

Week 4

Oct. 10th  - 15th

 

Curriculum and Teaching

 

1 week 

 

Discussion Board Post:

  • The Role of Education

Dropbox Assignment:

  • Identity As A Teacher 

Mid-course formative assessment

  • Reflection

DUE: END OF WEEK 4 – Oct. 15th

Module 4

Weeks 5 & 6

Oct. 16th – 29th

Classroom and Community Connections

2 Weeks

Discussion Board Posts:

  • The Role of Technology
  • The 6 C's

DUE: END OF WEEK 6 – Oct. 29th

Reading Week

Week 7, Oct. 30th  – Nov. 5th

Read ahead or catch up. Late assignments may be considered if posted during reading week

Module 5

Week 8

Nov. 6th – 12th

Pedagogy

 

1 week 

 

Discussion Board Posts:

  • ·        Linguistically Diverse Teaching Contexts
  • ·        My Classroom and Its Cultural Norms

DUE: END OF WEEK 8 – Nov. 12th

Module 6

Weeks 9 – 10

Nov. 13th – 26th

 Course Closure

2 weeks

Final Discussion Board Post

  • ·        Professional Resources

DropBox Assignment

  • ·        Final Assignment PME 851
  • ·        Final course reflection

DUE: END OF WEEK 10 – Nov. 26th

Friday, 01 September 2017 07:14

PME 832 - Syllabus - Fall 2017

PME 832: The Connected Classroom

Instructor: Dr. Paul Leslie

  • Assistant Professor, Faculty of Education, Queens University
  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Course designed by Dr. Holly Ogden & Judy Wearing

Below you will find attached a PDF of this page plus a PDF of the entire course outline.

Assignments
Discussion board posts (6 X 6% each for 35%)

For each discussion board, please post your own comment and then respond meaningfully and respectfully to the post of two classmates. Discussion board posts should be between 350 and 500 words in length and connect to the required readings.  Responses do not have a required length but should be crafted to further learning in a meaningful and respectful manner.

  1. “Making Connections” Please share three statements, two truths and a lie about yourself. Read and respond to the post of EVERY member of the class, by guessing which is the lie.
  2. My Connections” Share your annotated concept map, showing as many meaningful and authentic connections as you can imagine for students in your current practice. Provide a description of the connections you’ve mapped, referencing some of the readings and/or the video.
  3. “Top Two”. Cite related research and scholarship to make strong connections between two pedagogical approaches and the Mind Map you posted in Module 1.
  4. “Sharing Case Studies” Share a brief description of the second Case Study that you examined and provide a link for your peers to find more information about the program. Then, describe what you found to be the most significant “take-away” from the two examples of connected learning you researched.
  5. “Technological Tools” Share a brief description of three examples of how educators effectively used the same technological tool. Rank them in order of effectiveness, and explain why you ranked them in the order you did. Also explain how you would use this tool in your own practice.
  6. “Technological Frameworks and the Role of the Teacher” Consider your current practice. What are your strengths and next steps as you strive to offer technology-enabled connected learning for your students? Make reference to at least one framework and connect your thinking to November’s ideas.
Examining Theory in Practice—Case Studies (30%)

In this assignment, you will examine two, present-day examples of Connected Learning. You will investigate two case studies (one from a provided list, and one that you have found on your own) using the guiding questions below.

  • What pedagogical approaches from Module 2 relate most closely with each case?
  • What important skills are the students developing in each case study that may not be as readily developed in a traditional classroom setting?
  • What are the biggest three challenges or barriers to providing this kind of connected learning opportunity for all learners?  What are possible solutions to overcome these challenges/barriers?
  • Can you think of one or more suggestions to increase connectedness or enhance student learning in each?

Share your analysis of both cases in a written document (1000 words - double spaced). Post this document in the Theory in Practice DROPBOX for your instructor to evaluate using a checklist.

Leadership in Professional Learning—Designing a Technologically-Enhanced Connected Learning Experience (35%)

This culminating task will help you to bring together your learning from all five modules in this course. For this final project, you will envision what connected learning could look like in your professional context. As a culminating task, you will individually design a connected classroom project that you could use with your students and present it to your peers. You may choose to present your design as a project or unit plan or in another format (e.g., powerpoint, prezi, youtube video, etc.) with the goal of inspiring others to foster and create connections in their own teaching and learning. 

A successful connected classroom project or program will include:

  • Strong and authentic connection
  • Rich learning that uncovers the curriculum
  • Ongoing learning– not a one-time thing
  • Theoretically-supported pedagogy, Technology-enhanced opportunities, Feasible design.

Along with your connected classroom program/project, please write a rationale ( 600 words MAXIMUM, double spaced) detailing:

  • How the program relates to pedagogical approaches (cite scholarly work);
  • How you decided which digital technologies to incorporate;
  • Who you could share this work with and how you might share it; and,
  • Why you chose this approach and how it shows professional growth from your previous teaching and/or planning.
Formative Assessments

There are also two formative assessments in which you will reflect on your progress to date. These are not graded, but are mandatory assignments. They provide you an opportunity to speak frankly to the instructor about your thoughts and comments on the course, how the course is serving your needs, and your performance.

 

Course Syllabus

Module

Topic

Duration

Assessment

Introduction

Week 1

Sept. 18th -24th

Welcome to PME 832

1 week

 

Discussion Board Post:

  • Making Connections

DUE: END OF WEEK 1 – Sept. 24th

Module 1

Week 2

Sept. 25th – Oct 1st

What is a Connected Classroom?

1 week 

Discussion Board Post:

  • My Connections

DUE: END OF WEEK 2 – Oct 1st  

Reading week

Week 3 – Oct. 2nd - 9th (Thanksgiving)

Read ahead or catch up. Late assignments may be considered if posted during reading week

Module 2

Week 4

Oct. 10th  - 15th   

 

Pedagogical Approaches that Support Connected Classrooms

 

1 week 

 

Discussion Board Post:

  • Top Two

Mid-course formative assessment

  • Reflection

DUE: END OF WEEK 4 – Oct. 22nd  

Module 3

Weeks 5 & 6

Oct. 16th – 29th   

Theory in Practice: Examining Case Studies

2 Weeks

Discussion Board Posts:

  • Sharing Case Studies

DropBox Assignment:

  • Examining theory in practice – case studies

DUE: END OF WEEK 6 – Oct. 29th

Module 4

Week 7

Oct. 30th  – Nov 5th

Technological Tools for Connected Learning

1 Week

Discussion Board Posts:

  • Technology Tools

DUE: END OF WEEK 7 – Nov. 5th  

Module 5

Week 8

Nov. 6th – 12th

Technologically-Enhanced Learning Frameworks and the Role of the Teacher

1 week 

 

Discussion Board Posts:

  • ·        Technological Frameworks and the Role of the Teacher

DUE: END OF WEEK 8 – Nov. 12th

Reading Week

Week 9, Nov. 13th - 19th

Read ahead or catch up. Late assignments may be considered if posted during reading week.

Course Closure

Week 10

Nov. 20th – 26th

Leadership in Professional Learning and Reflecting on PME 832

1 week

DropBox Assignment

  • ·        Leadership in Professional Learning—Designing a Technologically-Enhanced Connected Learning Experience (35%)

Final Formative Assessment

  • ·        Reflection

DUE: END OF WEEK 10 – Nov. 26th

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