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Considerate Collaboration: Google Docs

Bee about to land on flower

A large portion of the work I do exists on Google Docs – whether working on internal documents within my department, for committees, within my classes, or collaborating online to co-author articles, organize events, or provide feedback to other writers. Over time, I realized that just because many people can use Google Docs does not mean they are always considerate in the ways they collaborate on Google Docs. Here are some tips on some areas I feel collaborators (whether peers, or teacher/stude…

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Using Video and Audio to Share Our Scholarship

person listening to headphones

 

[This is a guest post by George Veletsianos, Canada Research Chair in Innovative Learning and Technology and an associate professor at Royal Roads University, where he teaches in the MA in Learning and Technology program, and researches networked scholarship and digital learning. He blogs at http://www.veletsianos.com and you can follow him on Twitter @veletsianos.--@JBJ]

I use an eclectic assortment of learning resources in my courses. Books, peer-reviewed journal articles, op-eds, white pap…

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Self as OER

sky with wispy clouds

This post is co-authored with Suzan Koseoglu (@suzankoseoglu) who is an academic developer at the Teaching and Learning Innovation Centre at Goldsmiths, University of London. Suzan has recently defended her doctoral dissertation on open participants’ experiences in a massive open online course. You can read it here!

This post is based on a presentation Suzan and Maha gave this year at the OER16 conference in Edinburgh. Slideshare available here.

…the true benefit of the academy is the interacti…

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Rediscovering Ulysses

Screenshot of Ulysses applicationA few weeks ago, George suggested using a blogging client as a backup method.

I’d actually stopped using one some time ago. It wasn’t really a conscious decision; I simply had fewer occasions for cross-posting and after my 2012 experience of a plugin gone bad, I got a lot more careful about redundant backups.

George’s post piqued my curiosity, though. What blogging clients are available these days? I knew about MarsEdit, of course, but I didn’t know what else might be out there, so I did a lit…

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Gamify Your Writing Group

close-up of Sorry[This is a guest post by Emily Johnson, a Texts & Technology postdoc at the Games Research Lab at UCF. Her work focuses on gameful learning, motivation, serious games, and embodied learning. You can find her online at https://ekjphd.wordpress.com or @ekjphd.–@JBJ]

What do you get when you ask members of a Games Research Group to each commit to 30 minutes of scholarly writing a day? A game, of course! The Summer Writing Challenge began as a motivating way for members to make themselves accountabl…

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Making Room

empty room

One of my favorite questions for reflection and conversation at this time of year is:

What do you want to make room for this fall?

I like this question because not only does it encourage you to think about what you would like more of in your life, but also about how you can make that happen.

Sometimes making room is literal: clearing a bookshelf for materials for a new project, or decluttering a closet to bring ease to your daily routine.

Sometimes making room needs to happen in your schedule: …

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Student-Centered Design Within an LMS

Last year, I started teaching large online courses for the first time. While teaching online still has a lot of limitations and challenges, I’ve enjoyed approaching it as a design problem, and I’ve been trying to improve my online course materials every semester. Updating material isn’t just a matter of refreshing content: I recommend using each new class as an opportunity to check your organization, clarity, and menu design. Here are a few of the strategies I follow when trying to take a stude…

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Weekend Reading: Semester Gets Underway Edition

On my campus we just finished the first week of the semester, involving the usual combination of faculty meetings and classes. Whether you’ve also already started or you’re still putting the finishing touches on your semester prep, here are a few readings to consider over the weekend.

Robert Epstein dismantles the “vacuous” idea that the human brain can be understood by considering it a sort of organic computer:

Our shoddy thinking about the brain has deep historical roots, but the invention of…

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Switching from Evernote to OneNote, part 2

Book with notes flagged on pagesLast week, I explained why I made the decision to switch from Evernote to OneNote. This week, I want to give a brief overview of the how.

There are some important things to keep in mind:

  • Tags work wonderfully well in Evernote, and they’re highly customizable. OneNote has pre-defined tags. While some customization is possible, they simply don’t function the same way they do in Evernote. And for Mac users, at least, there’s no way that I’ve yet found to search tags (the function is available in t…
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Open Thread Wednesday: Strategies for Summer-Fall Transitions


This is my last week of summer, despite the fact that Florida heat won’t be going away anytime soon. Depending on your university’s calendar, if you’re on a 9 month contract you might also be staring down the first day of classes or savoring a last few weeks of summer research time. Either way, fall marks a time of transitioning that those of us in academia experience as our own new year’s, usually coming with its own resolutions and regrets. With course prep, syllabus writing, and in some cas…