INF537 Final Reflections

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537, required blog tasks | Posted on October 19, 2015

It is time to start reviewing what I have learnt and experienced over the past semester. I directly participated in four of the five guest presented colloquiums and am currently listening to the final presentation by Cathie Howie.  Presenters have covered such topics as the resources of ABC Splash (Annabel Astbury), big data (Simon Welsh), cosmogogy (Julie Lindsay), data control (Tim Klapdor) and MacICT (Cathie Howie).  With such a broad range of topics and concepts to consider it’s been hard to connect the dots at times and understand why we would be looking at them without a lot of background information given prior to the sessions, similar to what I have previously experienced in my earlier tertiary study.

However, this subject has continued to broaden my understandings in newer to me educational trends. I am still trying to get my head around some of the data sharing concepts and ideas and why we should be concerned with our data in the future. In some ways I am like my secondary students who are not concerned, or have no interest in understanding who owns my data, musings and other information shared on various on-line platforms.  This is something I will need to continue to keep abreast of, most likely via twitter and various educational blogs that I have followed over the course of the past two years while studying in the M Ed (Knowledge Networks & Digital Innovations) course. I am making more of an effort to read the e-newsletter by Stephen Downes, that I signed up to in INF530 originally, which often summarises topics like this. Some of these are more of a tertiary level concern. However, given that many things filter down into secondary schooling levels, it is useful to become aware of these trends.

Looking back over this subject, I can say that I have developed in my awareness of technological educational trends. Aspects of my digital scholarship paper, helped influence my case study, particularly in looking at how information can be accessed for learning and scholarship of all kinds. Allowing secondary school students access to their mobile phones in the classroom, under guidance can ensure that students have equitable access to learning materials that are globally available. Learning and teaching is no longer confined to the four walls of the classroom. Having access to other digital resources and audiences assists in making our students global learners. By preventing access to these materials and people, we are doing our students a disservice; they will not be able to fully appreciate and develop the skills they will need to interact with the society they are members of, and that their work will need. This subject has helped me be able to articulate these concepts to my teaching colleagues, some of whom are interested in seeing the results of my case study. It may not change their views on using mobile phones in the classroom, but they are aware of the disruptions they can be but are not entirely sure how to harness them to be an effective tool in the 21st century learning environment that educators are grappling with.

This subject has made me aware that I need to have conversations with my teaching colleagues about the possibilities of the here and now, as well as the future to ensure my students have success in their lives outside of school. I also need to discuss aspects of educational trends with students so they can potentially understand some of the potential issues arising from the way data is treated and used by various on-line platforms. They may be the ones to solve some of the concerns that educators have with the newer trends that are happening.

Teacher survey questions (feedback requested)

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on October 1, 2015

I have included my draft questions for my teacher survey. This survey is using Surveymonkey. I am not sure that the formatting will translate when I publish this post, so please ignore the formatting errors. 

Teacher Survey

This survey is for teachers and administrators of Foundation – 12 schools and Year 7/8 – 12 schools, with a focus on secondary schooling levels. The aim of the study that this survey is linked to is to investigate the question “To what extent does school policy match practice in terms of student’s mobile phones?” as a part of a Masters of Education with Charles Sturt University.
From Question 4, the term “mobile phone policy” will include either a stand-alone mobile phone policy OR an acceptable use policy for the school.
Thank you for your participation in this survey. The results may be published anonymously with any identifying data removed.

*1. What socio-economic status is your school?

*2. In what education sector is your school?

*3. Does your school have an official mobile phone policy document?

*4. Does your school policy allow the use of mobile phones in the classroom?

*5. How often do you follow your school’s mobile phone policy in the classroom?

*6. Do you have issues with students when enforcing your school’s mobile phone policy?

*7. How distracting are mobile phones in your classroom?

*8. On a scale of 1 (very concerned) to 5 (definitely not concerned), please rate how much you feel your school mobile phone policy is concerned with each of the following statements.

Very concerned Somewhat concerned Neither concerned or not concerned Somewhat not concerned Definitely not concerned Unsure
Reducing classroom disruptions
Maintaining security of members of the school community
Protecting student and staff privacy
Prevention of cyberbullying
Preventing cheating and academic dishonesty

*9. Do you think your school’s mobile phone policy should allow educational use of mobile phones in the classroom?

*10. Would you consider mobile phones in the classroom for educational purposes, regardless of your current school policy? Please share what you do, or would like to, use them for.

Please share what mobile phone uses for educational purposes in class you would like students to be able to do.

Digital Scholarship Interpretive Discussion Paper

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on September 17, 2015

I received my interpretive discussion paper back today and I was happier than I thought I’d be. It was a credit level piece and I was expecting more of a pass level, mainly because I felt very stressed at the time of writing it and didn’t expect to meet more of the credit level criteria. However I am happy with the mark and reasonably content with it. I am sharing it here.

I am looking forward to possibly seeing other people’s discussion papers to see what aspect of digital scholarship they discussed.

Case Study Research – Mobile Phone Policies

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on September 15, 2015

I’ve been a little under the weather lately (illness, marking and report writing) and I haven’t been getting into the research of mobile phone policies as much as I wanted to by now for my case study. Doing my research of policies so far has been through Twitter and Facebook groups.

Twitter:

I’ve tweeted out a request several times. I must remember to do this earlier in the day as well (or at least schedule earlier)

looking for mobile phone school policies (in Aust) – those that allow use in classrooms & no use in classrooms) #casestudy#INF537 PLS RT  https://t.co/k2mSRiO6BF

I haven’t had a huge response with helpful links/policies which is why I think I need to vary my timing. I have had a couple which are mainly from MEd (KN&DI) students.

Facebook Groups:

Tonight I finally found the time to write up the post that I wanted to outline what I was looking for from 3 different Teacher Facebook groups.

Hi all, I’m currently in my final subject of M Ed (Knowledge Networks & Digital Innovations) and my final assignment has me looking at mobile phone policies in practice {Actual Question= To what extent does school policy match practice in terms of student’s mobile phones?} I’m currently looking for school policies that allow mobile phones in class and do not allow mobile phones in class. If there’s an online link to school mobile phone policies that you can share to your school/previous school/s that would be great thanks (you can also PM me if you prefer). I will be looking at doing a survey for teaching staff and students at schools as well after reading a number of policies. I’m intending to focus on Australian schools (secondary or Foundation to 12 levels).

I’ve had a few responses, particularly on the Adelaide based group with policy links and people looking on their school websites to see if their school policy is on there. It has been interesting to hear of that a number of schools don’t have a mobile phone policy on their school website. In response to finding this out I’ve also said that I would be happy to have a scanned copy of their policy instead if that were possible. A number of the teachers have already said they are keen to do the survey when I’ve done it as well.

Other possible sources:

I’m also thinking that I will draft an email up for 2 e-lists (slasanet & oztlnet) that I am on to see if I can get some more electronic copies of mobile phone policies. I’m looking at doing this in the next day or so.

Another source that I was originally thinking of was the myschool website but if a reasonable number of schools do not post their policy on websites, that may take a lot longer for things to progress.

 

Case Study Proposal version #3

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on August 18, 2015

My third version of my case study. I much prefer this question as it is outlining what I am more interested in doing than my previous versions.

Topic:

To what extent does school policy match practice in terms of student’s mobile phones?

Description of project: 

This project intends to explore whether school mobile phones policies are enacted in the classroom. It will consider whether these policies allow or do not allow students access to mobile phones during class time and the effects this can have on the classroom. This study intends to compare different mobile phone usage policies in secondary (Year 7/8 – 12) and/or Foundation – 12 schools within Australia. Both students and teachers will be surveyed to consider both sides within the classroom setting. It is hoped that schools that do promote, or at least do not openly prevent, the use of mobile phones in classrooms will also contribute. Parent viewpoints may also be considered.

Expected Outcomes:

These include recommendations about whether mobile phone use in the classroom should be encouraged within guidelines or continue to be proscribed from the classroom. It may consider what guidelines may be recommended for secondary education settings to consider.

Case Study Plan:

14 Aug – 30 Aug:

  • Begin Review literature
    1. Published literature (ie Primo search)
    2. Mobile phone use policies from a variety of (secondary) schools in Australia. These are to be gathered via my PLN connections and MySchools website links to other schools.

31 Aug – 6 Sept:

  • Develop survey questions and consider answer formats for:
    1. teachers/school administration via SurveyMonkey
    2. students (and possibly parents) via SurveyMonkey
    3. Decide if surveying parents is warranted; develop survey questions if needed via SurveyMonkey
      • Consider asking questions to determine if there are similarities and differences based on socio-economic levels
      • Consider asking questions to determine whether private or public plays a difference in policies
  • Continue literature review
  • Continue gathering Mobile phone use policies

7 Sept – 20 Sept:

  • Survey teachers/administration and students
  • Analysis of mobile phone use policies. See if there are similarities and differences based on socio-economic levels and whether private or public plays a difference in policies

21 Sept – 27 Sept:

  • Analysis of survey results
  • Draft case study report

28 Sept – 11 Oct:

  • Complete case study report

Case Study Proposal version #2

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on August 17, 2015

 After feedback from my lecturer, I’m trying to consider clarifying my question and task.  I think what I’m trying to do is something along the following question. 

Topic: 

What is the most effective mobile phone policy to support student learning?

Description of project: 

This project intends to explore whether banning mobile phones in the classroom is an effective measure for student engagement or can they be harnessed to help students learn. It intends to compare different mobile phone usage policies in secondary (Year 7/8 – 12) and/or Foundation – 12 schools within Australia. It will also consider whether the banning of mobile phones is a useful tool in the behaviour management system if not permitted access in the classroom. Both students and teachers will be surveyed to consider both sides within the classroom setting. It is hoped that schools that do promote, or at least do not openly prevent, the use of mobile phones in classrooms will also contribute. Parent viewpoints may also be considered.

 Expected Outcomes:

These include recommendations about whether mobile phone use in the classroom should be encouraged within guidelines or continue to be banned from the classroom. It may consider what guidelines may be recommended for secondary education settings to consider.

The blue text is what I have currently changed from the previous version. I’m not entirely sure that my description of my project is right either. I prefer my new question/topic phrasing as this is more of what I want to investigate. I’m intending to put this new topic & description up on the INF537 forum for more feedback as well.

 

 

Colloquium #4: Who is in control of your data?

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537, required blog tasks | Posted on August 17, 2015

This week’s presentation was from Tim Klapdor and expands on his blog post. It was interesting to hear. The idea of who owns our data is not a new question. However, the model of many current operators is that of the closing off the digital commons, like the closing off of the village commons. There are some operators/players that starting to open up the commons again, starting to get users to cooperate instead of collaborate. However many are not aware of these options.

The idea of empowering users to create their own node for information in an interesting one and I think one that will probably start to take off when people get tired of allowing Facebook and other social media businesses to dictate what they can do with our data that we share on the various sites. The federated wiki idea sounds quite interesting and one I’d like to consider exploring one day down the track.

INF537 Case Study Proposal-version 1

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on August 14, 2015

So this is the first official version of my case study for INF537. There will be tweaks to this. It’s not yet okayed by my lecturer but it’s what I’ve submitted for now.

Topic:

Could allowing the use of mobile phones in student learning allow for a more streamlined learning experience?

Description of project: 

This project intends to explore whether banning mobile phones in the classroom is effective or can they be harnessed to help students learn. It intends to compare different mobile phone usage policies in secondary (Year 7/8 – 12) or Foundation – 12 schools within Australia. It will also consider whether the banning of mobile phones is effective. Both students and teachers will be surveyed to consider both sides within the classroom setting. It is hoped that schools that do promote, or at least do not openly prevent, the use of mobile phones in classrooms will also contribute. Parent viewpoints may also be considered.

 Expected Outcomes:

These include recommendations about whether mobile phone use in the classroom should be encouraged within guidelines or continue to be banned from the classroom. It may consider what guidelines may be recommended for secondary education settings to consider.

Case Study Plan:

14 Aug – 30 Aug:

  1. Begin Review literature
    1. Published literature (ie Primo search)
    2. Mobile phone use policies from a variety of (secondary) schools in Australia. These are to be gathered via my PLN connections and MySchools website links to other schools.

31 Aug – 6 Sept:

  1. Develop survey questions for
    1.  teachers/school administration via SurveyMonkey
    2. students (and possibly parents) via SurveyMonkey
    3. Decide if surveying parents is warranted; develop survey questions if needed via SurveyMonkey
  1. Continue literature review
  2. Continue gathering Mobile phone use policies

7 Sept – 20 Sept:

  1. Survey teachers/administration and students
  2. Analysis of mobile phone use policies. See if there are similarities and differences based on socio-economic levels and whether private or public plays a difference in policies

21 Sept – 27 Sept:

  1. Analysis of survey results
  2. Draft case study report

28 Sept – 11 Oct:

  1. Complete case study report

Colloquium #3 Leader/Peer

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537, required blog tasks | Posted on August 12, 2015

This week’s colloquium was different to the previous two. It was broken into 3 parts.

  1. Pedagogy to Cosmogogy
  2. Peer presentations on Wang, V. C. X. (Ed.). (2014).Handbook of research on education and technology in a changing society. IGI Global.
  3. Case Study introduction

Part 1

This was an interesting expansion of global learning from what I had already known. I struggle to implement this in the classroom. Mostly because I haven’t had the time and opportunity to try to implement these ideas. I do like norms of online global collaboration flow chart that was presented by Julie Lindsay. It starts to let me consider where I am on a continuum in online learning/teaching experience not just connecting globally to others.  It does also let me think about how advanced I am to other teachers and how some teachers are further along than I am. It also makes me consider where the schools are on a whole that I have worked in, mostly not very far along. I do want to go and read further in this area.

Part 2

I liked how we each had to read a chapter from Wang and summarize it very briefly. It helped to gain an understanding of other parts of the book that would have been interesting to read. I know I struggled to narrow mine down and after reading in the forum from someone else who read a chapter I was keen on presenting, I decided to look at another of my 4 that I’d managed to narrow it down to read. This way others would get another chapter to consider rather than doubling up on what someone else has done.

Part 3

A basic introduction to what things I need to do for the case study which is a major assessment task in this assignment. For me this was a re-cap of things I that I experienced in INF536 and INF506 with their case study and case report.

 

References

Lindsay, J. (2015, June). Norms of Online Global Collaboration. Retrieved from http://www.slideshare.net/julielindsay/norms-of-online-global-collaboration
Wang, V. C. X. (Ed.). (2014). Handbook of Research on Education and Technology in a Changing Society: IGI Global.

Case Study thinking so far

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Posted by Liz Eckert | Posted in INF537 | Posted on August 11, 2015

Case study ideas

So far I have two broad topics that interest me in possibly developing further.

  1. multiliteracies in secondary school classrooms (with limited computer/device access)
  2. social media use and schools
    • mobile phone use and policies was suggested in the INF537 discussion forums. This idea sounds attractive.

I’m writing this post to attempt to gain clarity of my thinking on both of these topics and to start to develop my proposal for the INF537 Case Study.

Ideas under Multiliteracies

Background :

My current school (R-12 suburban Adelaide)  has limited access to laptops; school is BYOD and families/students are not totally on board.

Notes about my thoughts:

I was considering the next unit of study for my two year 1o English classes and was having particular trouble with one class. In this class, about 1/2 the class struggles to do work during class time; it’s more of a social time for them. 1/4 of the class is away doing another course for 2 lessons (a double) out of the 4 lessons. And the other 1/4 do some work but can be easily distracted by the non-working members of the class. The class needs to read/study some sort of extended writing (ie novel type) this term. After discussion with the English co-ordinator, it was suggested that I do a graphic novel based unit of work. The trouble would be that there was not enough copies of any single text to study as a shared class text. I could do one on the IWB and look at analysing and reading together as a class while they also read their own. Graphic novels in this case could also include old style graphic stories like Asterix. The broadly anticipated assessment piece would be constructing a graphic story representation of an issue or topic relevant to teenagers.

The idea that I could teach multiliteracy strategies and concepts within this unit was sounding like a strong possibility and could link it to the case study. However much of the learning would be more of an off-line multiliteracy experience than the connected on-line experience that is typically thought of when considering multiliteracy.

Pre Research:

When I started to look at what multiliteracy research there was in teaching multiliteracy, what I was considering had been looked at already. And the data that I was considering collecting, class observations and discussions, along with pre & post activity survey, had already been done in several studies and it would be tricky to do classroom observations if I was the one teaching the class.

Ideas for Social Media and schools

Background:

I enjoyed the foray I made into looking at Social Networking and teachers in INF506 and was considering looking at something in this arena for this case study. I had no real idea about what sort of social media I would like to consider looking at. Last time I looked at Facebook groups and how they could support teachers who may not be permanently attached to a school as part of their PLN.

Forum posting and considerations:

Michele suggested looking at mobile phone use and student learning, particularly considering that many schools still ban their use in the classroom. (My current school is one of these – as part of getting students ready at the beginning of the classroom we’re directed to tell the students to put their phones in their bags).

Greg suggested looking at how social media is used for learning inside and outside of school.

I have done a quick pre research query in Primo on mobile phone use in classrooms and think this could be a more viable option for a case study, particularly looking in an Australian focus, and possibly a more specific South Australian focus.

Case Study Proposal Idea

This is to be taken back to the forum for further refinement.

Topic:

Is the banning the use of mobile phones in the secondary classroom an effective measure in student’s learning?

Description of project:

This project intends to explore whether banning mobile phones in the classroom is effective or can they be harnessed to help students learn. It intends to compare different mobile phone usage policies in secondary or Foundation-12 schools within Australia. It will also consider whether the banning of mobile phones is effective. Both students and teachers will be surveyed to consider both sides within the classroom setting. It is hoped that schools that do promote, or at least do not openly prevent, the use of mobile phones in classrooms will also contribute. Parent viewpoints may also be considered.

Expected Outcomes:

These include recommendations about whether mobile phone use in the classroom should be encouraged within guidelines or continue to be banned from the classroom.

Case Study Plan:
Week 1:
  1. Begin Review literature
    1. Published literature
    2. Mobile phone use policies from a variety of (secondary) schools in Australia. These are to be gathered via my PLN connections and MySchools website links to other schools.
Week 2:
  1. Develop survey questions for teachers/school administration and students (and possibly parents) via SurveyMonkey
  2. Continue literature review
  3. Continue gathering Mobile phone use policies
Week 3-4:
  1. Survey teachers/administration and students
  2. Analysis of mobile phone use policies. See if there are similarities and differences based on socio-economic levels and whether private or public plays a difference in policies
Week 5:
  1. Analysis of survey results
  2. Draft case study report
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