THATCamp Philadelphia: THATCamp Tips (Session Proposers/Moderators=William Patrick Wend/Chris Gazzara)

Chris and I proposed this session to discuss ways to move forward with THATCamp Community College. As you can see, session attendees had plenty of useful ideas.

  • Give some kind of credit to students for attending.

  • Can THATCamp be a part of career reorientation?

  • Budget planning needs to happen early.

  • What about service learning?

  • How about workshops for basics of retraining...Wikipedia, Wordpress, Google Drive, etc

  • “Six tools in an hour” workshop suggested.

  • Could there be connections made to career services in that regard too?

  • What can someone take from a workshop that can be immediately implemented in the classroom?

  • Could there be THATCamp sessions on project management?

  • A suggestion to put up a history of your THATCamp. We can definitely do that.

  • What about sponsorship?

  • Potential for some synchronization with our undergraduate research program here at RCBC and THATCamp.

  • What criteria is required for a workshop to “count” for something?

  • Workshops for students on how to use phones for notes/annotation? Active learning note taking strategies.

  • Possible workshop on whether _____ is useful in the classroom. Let attendees keep a scorecard.

  • A 30 minute summation workshop on previously done topics from our Center For Learning & Instruction.

ThatCamp Philadelphia 2014: Turning Analog Class Assignments Into Digital

This session was proposed and moderated by Michelle Moravec. Some of these notes were taken from the shared Google Doc for the session

  • Curricular transformation question as opposed to a pedagogical question

  • How are you differentiating between a project and an assignment?

  • How do you align course outcomes with digital assignments?

  • Misconceptions: DH projects are “fun” as opposed to work

  • Class assignment ideas:

    • Lauren Fonseca's students use Wikispaces to create end of term work

    • Group work rubrics are established and they are graded based on their goals.

    • Wikipedia: What would you add to this page to make it more credible?

      • Immediate rebuttal if you post something inappropriate

      • Wikipedia is very useful for background information and the genesis of secondary research

      • Student familiarity is also important

    • If you are going to try to have your students use a program, make sure you as the instructor know how to use it or support it.

  • Faculty should always begin small. Big myth that digital is easy.

  • Some potential platforms...

  • Scaffolding projects

  • Create accessible moments within each project.

ThatCamp Digital Pedagogy: Quelling Digital Panic In The College Classroom

The first session I attended at ThatCamp Digital Pedagogy was about quelling digital panic in the college classroom. Here are my notes:

  • Almost every student has a smart phone.
  • How do we engage student in classroom with so many distractions?
  • Shared Google Docs are a possible solution, but I have had mixed results with them.
  • How do we get students to buy into doing shared notes?
  • What is role of learning disabilities in this panic?
  • Google Doc for digital behaviour norms in classroom on first day of class? Cool idea!
  • Texting/social media break midway through class?
  • How do we teach digital citizenship?
  • Have students research terms of service/privacy of social networks.
  • I could do an entire semester of ENG101 on this...
  • Shared class Tumblr.

ThatCamp Community College: How Technology Affects The Form & Logic Of Composition Writing

  • How to bridge gaps between the two required composition courses here at BCC.
  • How to deal with differences between hypothesis and thesis?
  • How to deal with creative students versus those who need more formal training?
  • Differences between peer review via wikis versus Google Drive.
  • Reader versus writer based feedback.
  • Peer review speed dating.
  • Class size is a concern for face to face versus digital peer review.
  • Bias versus agenda in secondary sources.
  • How do we teach what is RIGHT about a source?

ThatCamp Philadelphia: Digital Humanities In The Classroom

The first session I attended at ThatCamp Philadelphia was on the digital humanities in the classroom. This was a great session that gave me a few ideas for my own classes.

  • Is WordPress good for archival or manuscript work? Maybe Omeka is better for that? There seem to be pretty significant differences between the hosted and non-hosted versions.
  • Someone mentioned making three minute “Ken Burns-y” videos with students.
  • Student created digital editions are a good thing to have on a CV. Could help with getting teaching or alt-ac job.
  • Loved the idea about students making timelines. We are trying that in my Shakespeare course with Dipity.
  • What do students need to learn besides WordPress to be effective and/or employable?
  • Suggestion to learn HTML and CSS.
  • Students should have project to create a website for future web presence.
  • I want to have students create websites to put online portfolios up, which could kickstart them to consider their web presence.
  • Putting work online forces students to consider audience.
  • Discussion of rewards during project as it goes instead of at end. I love this idea.
  • Student Writing Assessment: Did this project achieve what you set out to do?
  • Some discussion of Wikipedia projects, which I have done with mixed results in the past.
  • I brought up the shared Google Docs I use with my Literature classes.
  • How to deal with student concerns about online privacy.
  • Deal with privacy issues at beginning of project...make sure it is clear project will be public...should put this in syllabus
  • Students should consider general online presence and that future jobs will have some sort of online component.
  • Students should, with that said, be permitted to post anonymously. However, should also consider anonymous posting in regards to future CV/job stuff.
  • Good idea to have students search themselves online to see what their web presence is currently.

Engaging Learners In The 21st Century: Useful Apps For Higher Education

Alexandra Salas ran the session on Useful Apps For Higher Education. Here are some of the apps she went over during the session. For some of these apps, my notes focus on the extremely frustrating limitations of them. 

  • Flowboard has memory issues and does not export, which annoyingly means it has to live in the cloud. I seemed to puzzle some attendees with my concerns about this, which terrified me.
  •  Prezi doesn't support audio? I am so glad I never bought into it.
  • Socrative is polling software for phones, tablet, web that could be useful.
  • I agree that an important part of Google Drive is permissions and how you implement them in grading or collaborative projects.
  • Doodle is a scheduling app. I think it over complicates things. I send a Google Doc with times to sign up to advisees/classes.

Updated Technology Policy

As I have done in the past, this year I formed a student committee to work with me in rewriting some of my classroom policies. This year, I decided that my technology policy, even though only a few years old, needed to be amended, updated, and changed in various ways. With the help of my student committee Nicole Cammarota, Meghan McCallister, Lauren Graham, and Matthew Shoppas, we met once in person and then edited a shared Google Doc. After some editing on my part, this is what I ended up with:

Technology Policy
Please mute your cell phone BEFORE entering the classroom. If your cell phone goes off more than once while class is in a session, you will be asked to leave. I fully encourage whatever technology suites your learning style, accommodations, or interests whether they are laptops, tablets, apps on smart phones, etc, as long as they do not distract from our purpose in the classroom. Paper is totally fine too.
With that being said, during opening and closing remarks in class focus should be away from technology and on discussing our goals and outcomes for the day. Please remove all ear buds before entering class and keep them removed until you leave the room at the end of class.
In my classes, I have an expectation students will have access to email and computers in general. All of your work will be submitted to via your BCC Gmail account and returned, with annotated comments, via Google Drive. Given there are public and school libraries, the ILRC, coffee shops, etc, students need to budget their time better; I do not see any excuse for having “no access” to email outside of the classroom.
Students are expected to check their BCC Gmail account on a regular basis. I do not accept the excuse, “I didn't check my email for two weeks” as a valid problem. Digital correspondence should be written using proper grammar and form. I will not reply to emails filled with texting speak (2, u, 4, lol, j/k) or poor grammar and/or misspellings.
Please include a subject and "sign" your email with your name, student ID number, and course section. If you miss class, please check the syllabus for information about assignments, due dates, and outcomes from class. Do not email the professor and ask “did we do anything in class today?” or any variations on that theme.