Author Archives: Bob

Online Pedagogy: Personal philosophy — Bob

Often times we are significantly formed by negative role models — positively.   I mean, that we define ourselves positively in opposition to bad, weak or shabby experiences.   For me K-12 was a shabby, at best, series of experiences.   Fortunately, college and then graduate school were valuable and positive experiences — that I attended was a stroke of luck as I had written the whole of formal education off.   However, in being self-reflective of that disparity my early thinking about a philosophy of pedagogy was susceptible to radical theorists.   So for example:

  • Dennison, G. (1999). The Lives of Children:   The Story of the First Street School: Heinemann.
  • Foucault, M. (1995). Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (2nd ed.): Vintage.
  • Illich, I. (2000). Deschooling Society: Marion Boyars Publisher.

The physical site of schooling and the unnecessary connection between teaching and learning, or more explicitly the priority of teaching the  sub-texts, order and discipline, over content and learner, are at the heart of these critiques.   Moreover, in my early phase of theorizing about schooling, teaching and learning these were liberatory insights.   I needed to swing to the extreme as a process of healing to correct  my feelings of shabbiness.   However, one cannot long operate at extremes.   Gradually, additional thinkers softened and complicated these notions:

  • Bateson, G. (1972b). Steps to an Ecology of Mind. New York: Ballantine Books.
  • Schumacher, J. A. (1989). Human Posture: The Nature of Inquiry. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.
  • Wigginton, E. (1985). Sometimes a Shining Moment: The Foxfire Experience. Garden City, New York: Anchor Press/Doubleday.

All of these thinkers explore ways to be radical, thoughtful, and engaged in auditing their organization, even as they practiced their professions within that organization.   Through these and my own positive experience in higher education, I could imagine myself a teacher in this venue.   I even started a PhD program, ill-timed and so unfinished, I had to make my peace with earning a living to contribute to my family.   This, although at the time like a door closing, was actually another fortuitous turn in my professional life.   I started taking business and IT classes — a seeming radical turn from the libertarian, and philosophical leanings.   Yet, in truth, communication and leadership were the skills and interests that developed in this turn — very practical applications of the theories leading up to this moment.   In the latter part of those courses, I took some online classes and found a learning environment with which I resonated.   The, architecture of the classroom was ruptured (no sitting in ranks and rows) and the tyranny of the clock, gone (I could spend hours on interesting material and minutes on uninteresting).   Self-motivated learners were rewarded (or conversely the unmotivated weeded themselves out).   Pace was personally dictated (faster, and more being my preferred approach).   Interaction with other learners was by choice (at least far more than in the classroom).   Professors who realized that they were not in control and so instead became facilitators and coaches supporting my learning.   The timing is fortuitous for me as I see one more re-invention of my professional self, one more push before retirement.   Tied to that is my laser like desire to return to Alaska, my time as an undergraduate in Sitka — well like a salmon returning to the river of origin — it has always been my horizon.

Online Pedagogy is a new enough set of concepts, to me, that I do not yet have a defined set of categories.   Therefore, my vague set of categories:   I am fascinated by learning communities, by augmented reality, and gaming (both a model for inquiry, and fun thing to do).   In the specific context of Alaska, I see online learning as having a very important role in cultural preservation and transmission for Alaska Natives — it is a way to cross generations and locations.   I am interested in alternative forms of certification, the high school diploma, the BA, MA, instead of standing on their own are part of a wider set of credentials informed in part by real life (parenting should damn well count for some credentialing).   Another fascination aspect of online instruction is the creation of teams to do the work that used to be done by the “sage on the stage.’

Learning Communities:

I find the example of these provided by the surfer’s learning community described in earlier post to be deeply satisfying.  I love it because it reminds me of the Temporary Autonomous Zones    celebrated by Hakim Bey in the mid-80’s.  A relapse to my anarchist roots, timely as we have just survived an episode of higher educations self- reflexive bitterness.  For years I have subscribed to the mission of higher education only to be burned by the privilege of the tenured.  And here we get to the heart of why I love the story about surfers’ learning communities in YouTube, along with a host of other specialized skills, none of the cost (financial and spiritual) and all of the benefits and we do it ourselves.  I no longer buy, under questioned, the value of tenure track academics.

The TAZ is an encampment of guerilla ontologists: strike and run away. Keep moving the entire tribe, even if it’s only data in the Web. The TAZ must be capable of defense; but both the “strike” and the “defense” should, if possible, evade the violence of the State, which is no longer a meaningful violence. The strike is made at structures of control, essentially at ideas; the defense is “invisibility,” a martial art, and “invulnerability”–an “occult” art within the martial arts. The “nomadic war machine” conquers without being noticed and moves on before the map can be adjusted. As to the future–Only the autonomous can plan autonomy, organize for it, create it. It’s a bootstrap operation. The first step is somewhat akin to satori–the realization that the TAZ begins with a simple act of realization.

I love that our text for the course is so completely focused on learners and learning outcomes.  It is not about being in need of teaching rather we share the need for learning and only rarely is teaching the way to fill that need.  Indeed let me appropriate Bey’s musing:

The {learning}  is an encampment of guerilla ontologists: strike and run away. Keep moving the entire tribe, even if it’s only data in the Web. The {learning} must be capable of defense; but both the “strike” and the “defense” should, if possible, evade the violence of the State, which is no longer a meaningful violence. The strike is made at structures of control, essentially at ideas; the defense is “invisibility,” a martial art, and “invulnerability”–an “occult” art within the martial arts. The “{learning}” conquers without being noticed and moves on before the map can be adjusted. As to the future–Only the autonomous can plan autonomy, organize for it, create it. {Learning} is  a bootstrap operation. The first step is somewhat akin to satori–the realization that {learning}  begins with a simple act of realization.

It is important to remember that Bey was writing this at the dawn of the internet.  Yet he saw the parallels between pirate communities in the Caribbean and life online.  Certainly the internet feels a lot more like the Las Vegas strip these days, but, one can still find biker bars, so to speak, and wilderness.

Gamification:  serious play, flight and surgical simulations

I wrote a masters thesis once upon a time and there I celebrated the seriousness of play.  I urged the point that we are playing for our very lives.  Since it is unpublished you will have to believe me and accordingly  I will not bother to quote myself.  I have time and again raised the matter of skills along with knowledge and motivation.  Some of these simulations are an amazing opportunity to create skills without the price tag of real failure.  Flight simulations, combat simulations, are examples from the military and the airlines.  But, we hear as well about surgeons in a distant city using 3D printers to create an image of a damaged organ from which they create a strategy for surgery.  We raise eyebrows as our children spend hours perfecting fingering combinations on a game controller — but it is no stretch of imagination to see delicate tasks virtually and robotically augmented and controlled through… game controllers since they are familiar.

But this is only a part of what I mean.  I do not want to forget the giggle and rapture of discovery, of halting success.  Jumping rope, skipping stones, sandlot baseball, singing, and sometimes just messing around — how do we remember that and capture it and inject it into our classroom?  Part of it is certainly starting with the learner as sacred and central, but, that is not all of it…. Fun, discovery, invention, improvisation are fundamentally human just as learning is fundamentally human.  How can I in my role of “teacher” remember myself as having fun too, as learner too?  Is there a way to drag the state mandated learning outcomes into the rough and tumble of life — to make them authentic again, so that learners see themselves in them?

Resisting Cultural Extinction:  Cultural Preservation and Transmission through online learning

There is an irony (perhaps ironies) in making the connection between cultural preservation and online learning.  Life on the internet is virtual and representative of altogether different activities in the flesh and blood world.  Native cultures are very aware of starvation yet many of us online merely have to brush the Cheeto crumbs from our neck beards.  A picture is worth many words (some adult language, long and graphic illustration of processing food):

https://youtu.be/pGkwgikdmEo?list=UUQPFRwdzI1Z6iYMLuCKPL5A

I love the Cree family processing Goose, the radio playing oldies in the background, I love the busting of chops as his Mom corrects his sloppy job (notice in the comments folks telling him to listen to his Mother) so many cultural values reinforced, even if unintentionally and by non-natives .  I love that the conversation switches between Cree and English.  I learned (but not practiced), from this how to pluck and bone a goose (though I have processed chickens, ducks and turkeys, never geese) and I was fascinated to watch the transition of cultural knowledge across generation — and so much laughter.  The next step might be to make a VR where I practice what I have learned.  And we see video conversations frequently on YouTube and native communities (though perhaps not constrained by ethnicity).  Indeed:

So between these two videos I have points of comparison between hunting and gathering practices and across cultures.  So in the classroom we can explore this theoretically through concepts of anthropology or history.  We can explore it as practical activity and process our own food.  We can share it with elders and create conversations.   I also see getting people to play with their food as a subversive activity in this age of mass produced and processed food.  For me  this at the heart of what I am relevating in this post  — this is Online Pedagogy.  To whit our jobs are more and more to help learners refine their art and inspire them to lifelong learning.

Final Project: Rational and Method — Bob

I suspect that most academic libraries struggle with similar problems, limited permanent staff, multiple locations, extensive hours of operation, and many part-time student employees with frequent turnover, and schedules that do not overlap with supervisors.   The work consists of customer service, technology support, providing directions, basic research assistance, and building security.   Our part-time employees consist of traditional age undergraduate students.   Colby is a highly selective liberal arts college — accordingly our talent pool is a good one.   However, these young adults have little previous job experience, and while they have good work ethic developed in schoolwork and sports they often struggle to transfer that to the workplace.   While we have tried hard to make “workplace expectations’ more transparent we still have more work to do in this area.   One way to do this is to move a portion of our training to our Learning Management System.

Online instruction and e-Learning tools are increasingly being used in the academic setting for faculty to deliver course content; however, most libraries have yet to apply the advantages offered by these tools to employee training. This case study from the University of Arizona Libraries (UAL) presents the challenges of sustaining traditional training approaches and the steps to develop an online training program, including identifying specific competencies needed to create effective online training, an approach to prioritizing where to start your program, and requirements for training platform selection. (See and Teetor 2014)

Therefore, the project for this course is to create a blended learning environment for our training purposes.   While online presentation is important, what is really at stake is creating a multiplier effect that significantly increases our training contact hours with our employees while not increasing the number of our supervisory staff nor significantly increasing their workload.   An important technique is creating a “flipped workplace’ so to speak.   The Flipped Learning network website offers a straightforward definition on their homepage.   “Flipped Learning is a pedagogical approach in which direct instruction moves from the group learning space to the individual learning space, and the resulting group space is transformed into a dynamic, interactive learning environment where the educator guides students as they apply concepts and engage creatively in the subject matter.’   There is however, the question of how much content and what type of content moves to the “individual learning space.’   Likewise, what are the expectations, and motivations, and reasonable limits to pushing workplace training into the “individual learning space’?

Since the workplace already consists of a “dynamic, interactive learning environment’, there is an inherent logic to this configuration of employee training.   “Transformative learning involves ‘reflectively transforming the beliefs, attitudes, opinions, and emotional reactions that constitute our meaning schemes or transforming our meaning perspectives’ (Ally 2008).   In the case of our professional demeanor unit, the question becomes — what behaviors, performances, or changes in performance and behavior would convince me that learning occurred because of employee’s interaction with the resources in the unit?

In this unit, employees learn skills and practices of workplace professional demeanor.  First, what do we mean by “professional demeanor’?   A definition of “demeanor’ lists, conduct, behavior, appearance, and deportment as key elements — we modify that by setting it in the professional circumstance.   Really, these skills and knowledge are assumed in many workplaces but we have learned over years that we cannot assume this; we have to make these expectations explicit.   Therefore, this unit will cover:

  • library mission, vision and values,
  • work ethic,
  • workplace appearance,
  • basic workplace communication
    • phone
    • written
  • basic customer service

The selection of Moodle for a presentation format is because it is the college’s LMS.   Alas, I cannot simply link to this presentation as it is behind Colby’s security protocols.   So instead I have provided a screen-cast “tour’ of the unit, linked here.
Library_Customer_Service_–_Professional_Demeanor
Where Moodle is Colby’s LMS, our student employees are already familiar with it.   The use of our existing online training/reference manual linked from within the LMS creates a feedback loop for our employees reinforcing our instructions to use this resource as they try to answer customer questions or engage in review to reinforce training.   The use of “question and answer’ forums is also an important tool within the LMS.   Specifically this type of forum requires a participant to post before they can see co-workers posting.   I am hopeful this will help us avoid superficial engagement, for example, “I agree with Sally.’   Another tool used in this unit is Lynda.com this because of our campus subscription to this resource.   Leveraging this reduces the amount of content we have to create from scratch.   Certainly, there are costs and benefits to outsourcing training in this way.   We will seek feedback to understand these tradeoffs.   We will pilot the content with our seniors this year.   From this, we learn about the usefulness of the content and about the assignments themselves.   Indeed one possible scenario is after our seniors “take the course’ we give them the keys to the kingdom, give them “teacher’ status, and ask them to help us re-write the weak sections.   We will also implicitly certify that they do not leave us without exposure to these key workplace skills/knowledge.

A recurrent question both from my direct reports and from the instructor of this class has to do with — what gives us some teeth?   — “teeth,’ meaning both requiring participation and assessing learning outcomes.   One way to give the online instruction “teeth’ is for me as the Assistant Director of Customer Service and Administration to be the main instructor.   Another is to grade the course like a graduate course, A, B, F.   This has some logic because although this grade will not show on their transcript “grading’ is an experience this demographic is familiar with and driven by.   Once we have all employees, returning and new hires, through the training the number of participants will drop to between six and twelve.   Frequency will be at the start of fall and spring semester.   One element of this is simple participation — does the employee do what is asked?   If they refuse to participate, they are showing a withdrawal from the workplace much like absenteeism.   Absenteeism is addressed, though progressive disciplinary procedures.   Probably, I might weight non-participation in online instruction differently from missing several shifts, none-the-less both are unacceptable behavior and addressed with the same protocol.   Additionally, each year employees receive evaluations.   One aspect of this is participation is training.   Our move into the online environment simply provides one more piece of evidence for these conversations.

I see two opportunities for assessment.   First is in the LMS as they work through the assignments; second in the workplace as they do their work.   I care most about their demonstration of learning in the workplace.   I think that constructivist theories are also important in thinking about the learning we are encouraging and our assessment.

Inquiry and community were at the  core of John Dewey’s educational philosophy and  practice. Dewey (1959) believed that an educational experience must fuse the interests of the individual and society,  that individual development was dependent upon  community.  He  believed the essence of community was the organic fusion of the public and our private worlds. He also believed that the process of inquiry  went to the heart of the  educative experience. For  Dewey, inquiry involved the generalization  of the scientific method to practical problem solving and worthwhile learning. It defined the relationship between thought and action. For Dewey, inquiry was also an essentially social activity.  Dewey believed that through collaboration that respected the individual, students would assume responsibility to actively construct and confirm meaning. It is this collaborative constructivist approach that is worthy of further exploration in online learning. (Swan 2009)

This online presentation creates a site for community and practice of peer feedback.   This is important in all workplaces simply because learning occurs at all levels of the organization.   If this learning is not shared, the organization is vulnerable.   However, it is very difficult to create a culture of trust and respect in the workplace.   There is no single right answer to creating trust and respect just many approximations.   I hope that forum discussions in the LMS about shared learning can be part of these approximations.   Another element of using the forums as a public display of learning and requiring peer-to-peer commenting is practice with accountability (“teeth,’ as it were) to each other, not just to the supervisor.

Regarding the mission, vision and values section, I am looking for employees to understand themselves as part of a larger organization and part of an important mission.   Another aim for this section is to create some context for our work.   I think such understanding makes the work meaningful rather than rote.   Regarding the work ethic unit there are specific behaviors that could change because of this learning, for example, timesheets completed with greater accuracy and timeliness.     This section as drafted has eleven learning outcomes hence our hopes for it is significant (in truth, some of these outcomes may have to move to other instructional activities).   Some of this is about reliability creating trust and respect between employees.   Some of it is about accountability creating self-awareness about performance and knowledge in the workplace.   Finally, some of it is about choosing to do the right thing in the workplace.   Regarding the appearance section, first, we are not requiring a particular dress code instead, rather we are suggesting one, by setting the mark for business casual, we will likely achieve smart casual.   That said assessment could be defined in behavioristic terms — that is if we see employees more frequently in appropriate clothing and less frequently in inappropriate clothing then we have achieved a change in behavior.   For our purposes in the workplace that could be enough.   Finally, all of these issues and matters pertain to the last section about workplace communication.   If we have done a better job of creating knowledge, we will see among some of our employees an improvement in how they answer the phone and transfer the calls.   Some will require additional feedback as they develop skills and some will require additional motivation for us to see this improvement.   For us the improvement will look like answering the phone and transferring calls professionally and correctly.   In addition, notes left for us regarding customer problems that the student employees had to refer will be more complete and legible.

In conclusion, I think we have made some progress in identifying skills and knowledge we all too often take for granted and assume that our student employees will value and demonstrate.   I think there is a coherence to the content and sequence of the instructional unit.   However, it is only through usability testing that that will be confirmed.   Rather more likely is that some sections will be modified significantly after testing.   As mentioned, we will pilot this unit with our seniors this spring.   One of the open questions is do we march through the unit, five weeks, at the start of the semester?   Alternatively, do we spread the unit across the entire semester?   The former solution has the possible problem of overwhelming a new hire, the latter runs the risk of losing impact as the students shift to doing their schoolwork and losing efficacy in the workplace — we need the employees to do the work well immediately.   I am not as worried about requiring participation as some of my direct reports.   Nor, am I worried about having the employees doing some or all of the work during their regular shifts.   That said I perhaps should be listening to them more closely — only practice will show.   I have felt distanced from the student employees as my job responsibilities shifted to an administrative nature.   I am hopeful that I can reconnect with them through “teaching’ this unit and helping them see that these workplace fundamentals are important to us, but more to them.

Ally, M. (2008).  Foundations of educational theory for online learning. In  Anderson, T., & Elloumi, F. (Eds.).  The theory and practice of online learning  (2nd ed.)  (pp. 15—44). Athabasca, AB, Canada: Athabasca University.

Andrew See & Travis Stephen Teetor (2014) Effective e-Training: Using a Course  Management System and e-Learning Tools to Train Library Employees, Journal of Access Services,  11:2, 66-90, DOI: 10.1080/15367967.2014.896217,  https://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15367967.2014.896217

Swan, K., Garrison, D. R. & Richardson, J. C.  (2009). A constructivist approach to online learning: the Community of Inquiry framework. In Payne, C. R. (Ed.) Information Technology and Constructivismin Higher Education: Progressive Learning Frameworks. Hershey, PA: IGI Global, 43-57.

6.1 tool survey — Bob

So, I didn’t read the assignment closely enough to understand the difference between the two tool assignments — my bad.  Hence, this is some makeup work.

I found, JoyTunes, and more specifically their apps, PianoMeastro and Piano Dust Buster.  Since I have slightly more musical aptitude than a sack of potatoes but, a great fondness for music these apps intrigued me.  I watched a couple of their promotional videos and particularly resonated with the “gamification” of music practice.  The adults mentioned the shortened attention span of young people these days.  Yet the kids recounted practicing for perfections as a result of using the apps.  Apparently,  PianoMeastro can be used rather like an LMS where the teacher can add assignments for particular students and push these out between classes.  I suspect that additional research might show me a number of companies and a number of instruments in this market niche — none-the-less thought this was really cool.  Easy to see applications in home or enrichment schooling on a families tablet or, in school, or the traditional instrument instruction — many of the adults in these promotional videos were introduced as “piano teacher” for example.  I’ll have to look around for an app that teaches blues guitar — maybe Jack White has been recruited for the voice acting .

On far other end of the spectrum is zSpace.  Here we are talking high powered software, and big school districts, big money.  This is an immersive 3D simulation using “pens” and glasses.  All the teachers and students are smiling and fascinated by what they are interacting with.   One video describes “heart dissection”.  I suspect it doesn’t come with senso-rama so no stink of formalin, nor any real body fluids, ohh, like blood.  There was no cutting of the sternum and spreading of the rib cage….  Maybe they save that for the version for medical schools.  The expense, and the hyper-real sanitary and unreality of it are really off putting for me.  The heart I saw in the video looked like a drawing — I didn’t see any real plaque in the veins or fatty buildups.  It is cool and sexy technology and probably a very interesting use and application.  But it troubled me too.

After a lot of poking around I was able to find  Tynker.

The website offers modules for home, for school and for partners (enrichment programs). The point is that coding is a literacy that we all, but particularly our children need to learn.  The coding here is embedded in interfaces that are a lot more pleasing and interactive then the lines of basic we had to write in the bad old days.  The product seems to be aimed at kids elementary and middle school age.   Each module builds on the previous, and there are several different  modules, each costing $50.  It appears that they are moving into coding for mobile devices too.   I suspect that the company is building a community as well though exactly how that works is a little unclear to me.  The have a page called the “hour of code” which they are participating in and supporting it seems to be an intentional effort — kinda cool.

New(ish), cool, tool review — Bob

Review of Quia.com.   Quia is pronounced “kee’ah’ if it matters… it is a mnemonic for “Quintessential Instructional Archive’.     I sensibly read the “About Quia’ page first after landing on the site.   Quia is more than a site to make quizzes, or learning activities it is an archive of such objects.   The site has been active for 10 years (so not new)  this and its international popularity results in a huge set of resources.   While the site claims to serve students of all ages, I would be hesitant to use the kinds of activities and games beyond elementary or middle school age learners.

I created a 30-day trial profile and immediately linked to activities and created a deer hunting word jumble activity.   I listed 20 words related to the topic and clicked the next button a script generated the activity.   I made it:   https://www.quia.com/jw/481545.html   this quiz however, I simply linked too: https://www.quia.com/quiz/303980.html.   The tools are simple to use and the outcomes are significantly better then what I remember for elementary school — think drum mimeograph duplicated work sheets.   That said, are they snazzy enough to capture the attention of more privileged students?   On the other hand, perhaps this is appropriate technology?   I think the answers to those questions depends on where one is teaching and what age group.

My original intention was to beat this resource up, however, the more I think about it the more generous I am with it.   If I had internet access but no real IT support, was teaching children, and had $50 dollars to spend, this resource could really have some potential.   I can see this being a treasure trove for home schooling.   I am perplexed that they offer a corporate subscription rate of $200 dollars…   I can see how some of the tools would be useful for HR departments, how supervisors training skills might use it, but the site is clearly for children, or elementary teachers, that impression just does not fit for corporate setting.   A teacher can create and manage a class, in many ways identical to using any other learning management system.   They can link activities and quizzes to that page.   The teacher can enroll students or the teacher can opt for self-enrollment.   I spent a bit of time clicking through to see if the material was fresh and current or older, perhaps outdated.   I found a lot of current material a lot being created and used by elementary schools in the US.   Interestingly, many teachers have made their profiles public and have provided work contact information, hence, creating a learning network for educators.

Along with the core, service described here comes an e-bookstore sub-site that lists materials available online from Quia.   The IXL sub-site appears to be a huge library of learning activities in math or language arts — again, my mind went to home schoolers, but any learner needing additional problem sets or review could benefit from the resource.   Both the e-bookstore and the IXL sites have materials appropriate for high school age learners.   If I were working with K-12 age learners, I would take  the resources the site offers seriously.

Review of PhET.colorado.edu:   Immediately on landing on the page, I concluded that it was for elementary age learners.   I then clicked on the link “For Teachers’ and watched the promotional video https://youtu.be/FeiUtg7v72M; I will wait here while you view it, hmm, hmmm, hmmm.   Therefore, again we see how wrong first impressions can be.   This site is aimed at high school and college students.   The simulations are created by a team of designers at University of Colorado Boulder I figured out that I would not be making a simulation but rather using one, for example, this one:

 

Each simulation has a page from which you can download the particular simulation.   Accompanying the download is a chart of teaching ideas, which appear to be teaching resources submitted by folks using the simulation with their students.   There are also translated versions of the simulations to support international learners.
I played around with the simulation on the introductory level.   I was intrigued with the slider adjustments balancing snowfall and air temperature trying to find where the glacier broke into advance or retreat with each variable.   I could see my classmate using these in her unit on ecosystems.   Alas, I found the toolbox perplexing although I eventually sorted most of them out.   The advanced mode offers graphing tools that far exceeded my interest and attention span — perhaps, an assignment that required me to answer questions that the graphs explained would tease me into understanding.  Since, I am not making a simulation.   I guess I am left to make an assignment….       Maximize one slider variable or the other, snowfall or air temperature use the other variable to stabilize the glacier’s advance or retreat.   Repeat with the other variable.   Explain how these experiments help you understand climate change.   Measure the ice thickness at its extremes measure, the temperatures at these points offer an explanation for the temperature variations.

I do not know, I am making this up, I am no earth scientist.   However, I will wait here will you play with the simulation… hmmm, hmmm, hmmm.  Simply this web site and these resources are the bomb.   I am sure that if I had more of a clue about the topics I would think they were even better than that.   You gotta get some of this.

Review of Google apps or, more specifically Google Classroom.   Google Classroom is an LMS integrated with the Google apps/drive.   On one hand, it is weak tea now.   There is currently no compelling reason to leave Moodle or WordPress, however, given how powerful and pervasive the suite of Google tools is it is just a matter of time for it to become a serious contender too.   Combine it with Chromebooks and with Google Hangouts and it just keeps getting more interesting.

There are quite a few video presentation on using Classroom:

I can see early adoption by K-12 programs, particularly those committed to putting iPads, Chromebooks or laptops in the hands of their students.

Colby is a Google shop and a ton of work is done in this way.   Here I am thinking about administrative as well as academic.   Having a single login and accessing communications, collaboration, storage/archiving, scheduling, word processing, spreadsheet and a classroom is seductive.   It is seductive in terms of ease and relative transparency in getting work done.   It is seductive as well from an IT and management perspective, licensing and installing software is expensive and iterative, whereas having Googles tools in the cloud for all employees/students to access is easy and less expensive particularly for education customers.   As Google builds functionality into Classroom, it will take some time to gain momentum but for sites saturated with Google this will be an easy and logical transition even as  the tool becomes robust.   In addition, increasing pressure will be felt to adopt it in higher education as students matriculate.   In truth, I did not make anything with Classroom because I do not have access to it yet.  However, we make stuff with Google apps everyday, all day, so nothing sexy here at all, and yet I am really hopeful that my employer turns Classroom on.  I will seriously consider migrating my employee instruction developed in this class, to it.  According to some of the reviewers, folks with personal domains could set it up and experiment with it.   Personally, I work with Google apps all day long and I do not really see the big deal… what learning curve?  For folks that have a lot of experience with LMS systems I likewise think that once the functionality is more developed it will be as easy as falling down.

Weekly Writing, 5:2 Bob

I apologize for posting late.   This weekend needed to be about deer hunting, and about fall chores, sweeping the chimney, clearing out the shed and the cellar, putting up a new mailbox before the ground freezes and the snow falls.

The idea of requiring students to present their work via the internet is often met with trepidation by educators. Which concerns are valid? Which are hype? What are the merits of having students present in a public space? In which circumstances do the advantages supersede the concerns? For your writing post this week, weigh the value against the danger of public homework and online student participation.

I wonder what we mean by “public posting’.     In this course, I suppose someone somewhere in the world with too much time on his or her hands could “Google’ and turn up our blog site.   Within a LMS “public’ has a much smaller definition.   There is also the assignment itself to consider.

My first thought is a reminder of Eliot Wiggington’s self-reflection as he “discovered’ his pedagogic practice.   In his chapter “So What Did I Learn in School Anyway?’ one of his answers has to do with making real stuff and hence the Foxfire magazine and books.   Publishing whether to a blog or in a print publication ups the ante considerably both in terms of accountability and responsibility.   Certainly, the learner may receive a grade but the potential exists for real world feedback too.   On the accountability side, we see personal benefits from real motivations, for example, not missing deadlines and not looking the fool. On the responsibility side, we see team benefits through self-consciousness in participating in a larger discourse and developing teamwork on the project.   Therefore, school begins to mirror real life, real work and in that way becomes truly preparatory.   The anxiety at the moment one clicks the “publish’ button is real.   Learning to manage that feeling is real life.   What if the first time a person really has to take it seriously is their first job — are not the stakes already high enough?

Pause; is it really the work of schools to expose students to real feedback from the wider world?   On the other hand, should not schools be the safe practice arena where development is encouraged and progress celebrated not just outcomes?

This course blog is co-authored by adults, by folks well into their careers, practiced in the workplace and in the graduate school class.   The quasi-public nature or the blog is just part of the games we already play, so to speak.   That is very different from the experience of K-12 age learners.   Yet I wonder if there is a place in their learning for tastes of this experience?   We see so much boredom in K-12 age learners in the classroom, and yet, we see them engaged online in many ways.   In addition, getting the feedback that such involvement guarantees, gender, age, and ethnic origin are invisible online.   Rather, the product, video, tweet, forum or blog post has to stand the acid test of scrutiny.   Let us recall our surfers posting videos of their process developing new techniques.   The comments on any online forum can be harsh.   If the young people themselves are already engaged in this rough and tumble by choice then what are we kidding ourselves about?   Pause; not all young people are so engaged, and the rough and tumble of the internet can decay into name calling and bullying.   Therefore, we have responsibilities too particularly for younger learners.

Returning to the assignments it seems as well that what we are talking about are final projects.   If however, we mean every worksheet and problem set along the way then absolutely we have gotten things twisted about.   A final project should be definition stand up to some scrutiny.   However, being nibbled to death over a problem set is just wrong.   This course is fully public our comments, our work is all visible, we do not have an official back channel, or back stage.   Yet, we are free to create such supports if we need them.   So perhaps, we invert that ratio for younger, less practiced learners, more work done in protected online spaces and less done publicly, yet still some public responsibility.

In addition, that turns us to the matter of scholarships responsibility to the advancement of knowledge.   Unequally yoked with that is the scrutiny of politicians and taxpayers.   Yet both can be addressed in the public display of academic pursuits.   A permanent, and public blog, is a way to engage critics of the schools with hard evidence of process and outcomes in our schools, a shareholders report of sorts.   For scholars engaged in online instruction our course blog might well be interesting and inspiring.   Lurking might well be part of creating a learning community or informing one.  Indeed, I have a dear friend who has taught face to face business classes for many years.  He is currently teaching in the online environment for the first time.  In a very real sense he has been thrown into the deep end.  As we started this semester I thought about sharing the url to the blog with him — letting him shoulder surf, lurk.  I am still pondering the ethical qualities of such an act.  What are my responsibilities to my fellow students, to the instructor, to UAF?

In the end I am certain I have offered no profound or innovative insights into the question.  Obviously I think there are enough merits, enough benefits for learners of various ages and experiences in posting scholarship to the internet, to engaging in a process of peer review to justify such requirements.  On the other hand not everything has to be done in the “deep end” and not always for everyone — we are professionals and as such have the responsibility and artistry to judge appropriate boundaries for the learners we have accountability to.

Wigginton, E. (1985). Sometimes a Shining Moment: The Foxfire Experience. Garden City, New York: Anchor Press/Doubleday.

Professional Demeanor Training Unit

Library Mission, Vision and Values

Learning outcomes:

  • locate quickly and refer to the Library Mission, Vision and Values statements.
  • memorize the libraries mission statement.
  • list the libraries core values.
  • explain how the mission vision and values inform their daily performance in the workplace.

Learning Resources:

Library Site Specifics

Assignments:

  1. Find the Library Mission, Vision and Values statements in two different places.
  • Print locations,
  • Web locations

Demonstrate this ability to your library coordinator.

  1. In whatever preferred way, memorize this mission statement: “The Libraries are central to Colby’s scholarship, providing scholarly resources and services to advance students’ and faculty’s teaching, learning and research experiences.’ Demonstrate this ability to your library coordinator.
  1. Use one of these Mnemonic generators to create a fun (and useful way to recall the libraries’ values)

Share and explain your mnemonic on the forum.

  1. Compose a short essay (500-800 words) that draws from our training and your experiences working at the desk. Summarize the library mission vision, values statement, and relate between our policies and procedures at the service desk and your summary.   Share your essay on the forum and comment on at least two other postings.
Work Ethic

Learning outcomes:

  • explain why showing up for your shift a few minutes early (as frequently as possible), working through the start of shift checklist of chores immediately, and sharing those chores with your co-worker are important.
  • tell why arranging for shift coverage as soon as you learn of your need and if you are ill contact either or both your student supervisor or Branch coordinator at the earliest possible time.
  • summarize how completing timesheets regularly and accurately demonstrates good work ethic.
  • discuss how following through on commitments, like providing shift coverage or any service promise he/she makes to a customer needs to be executed upon and completed.
  • show how to provide peer-to-peer feedback on job tasks while maintaining trust and respect.
  • explain why customer confidentiality and privacy are important both as values and in terms of the law.
  • tell why not abusing password authorizations in any library system or resource is both a legal and ethical matter
  • explain why honesty and accuracy in entering hours in time sheet is an important responsibility.
  • tell why honesty in requesting sick time is an important part of workplace behavior.
  • explain why owning a mistake is important (hint, blame is a wrong answer).
  • discuss why not knowing something is an important signal about his/hers workplace performance.

Learning Resources:

Time Entry

On Duty Responsibilities

Schedule

Assignments:

  1. View the linked YouTube videos:

Consider two potential meanings: ethical behavior appropriate to the workplace, or the notion that work builds character.

  1. Go to this url https://web.colby.edu/acits/lyndacampus/, and follow the instructions on logging in. Once you have access view the video training listed below.   It is fine to do this during your regular but quiet shift (please just remember to leave one ear bud out so that you can still hear the phone, or face-to-face customer questions).

Connecting with Peers in the Workplace  with Todd Dewett

Coach Todd Dewett outlines helpful techniques for building and maintaining productive coworker relationships.

  1. With the various YouTube, videos and the training video from Lynda.com in mind write a 500-800 word essay on work ethic and ethics in the workplace. Post the essay on the forum and comment with critical and supportive feedback on two other essays written by co-workers.
Appearance

Learning outcomes:

  • exemplify professionalism through dressing appropriately for workplace, this include appraising his/her wardrobe and selecting clothing, footwear and jewelry appropriate for a library service desk
  • classify clothing inappropriate in the workplace this includes providing examples of clothing in this category and being able to offer reasons for the classification.
  • understand the importance of and practice smiling when you greet customers to convey confidence, enthusiasm and potentially to diffuse difficult conversations.
  • analyze and interpret the tone of the customer service situation and match affect for that tone.
  • tell why being clean and well groomed (and laundered) including using deodorant, yet avoiding strong perfume is important in the workplace and on making good first impressions.
  • think about and explain the impact of tattoos, piercings and gauges on creating professional persona.

Assignments

  1. View the linked YouTube videos:
  1. Search through your favorite search interface (Google, for example) the terms “business casual for ‘gender’’ and “smart casual for ‘gender’’ limit your search to images.
  1. Thinking about your probable potential employers search two Human Resource pages, for companies you would like to work for, review their dress code and policy on tattoos, piercings and gages. Summarize what you have learned in a paragraph (300-500 words) and post it on the forum.   Comment, thoughtfully, on three posts by co-workers.
  1. Select two outfits from your current wardrobe that constitute business casual or smart casual outfits. Take a selfie of yourself in each and post the two pictures to the Moodle forum.   Explain your choices in a short description.   We can have some fun with this homework, but let us keep it tasteful.
Work Place Communication

Phone etiquette

Learning Outcomes:

  • explain why answering the phone during the first 1-3 rings is important
  • create personalized greeting that will include the organization name, the answerer’s given name, and an offer for assistance. Explain why this is important
  • execute a correct phone transfer, this includes both operating the phone functions correctly and demonstrating appropriate communication with the customer. Create a personalized script for phone transfers.
  • demonstrate three ways to locate phone numbers for campus or library staff.

Learning Resources:

Customer Service

Assignments:

  1. View these two videos in their entirety.

Imagine that you are creating a Phone Etiquette training video.   Select the most valuable points from both videos.   List them as bullet points and order them in the best sequence for learning them.   Post these lists on the Moodle forum.   Comment constructively and creatively on at least three co-workers lists.

  1. Create your greeting, and transfers “scripts’ and practice them on your shifts this week. Report in the forums how you have modified your scripts and what you learned in using them.   Think about what other frequently asked questions you could create “scripts’ for post one of them on the forum.

Writing in the workplace

Learning Outcomes:

  • handwrite notes that explain the problem/situation, and answer who, what, where, why, when and provide correct contact information.
  • explain the difference between personal, academic, and workplace writing.
  • write proper workplace e-mail.

Assignments:

  1. View these two videos in their entirety.

Summarize these two videos with a short list of bullet points that capture the important points.   Share your list on the forum.   Comment constructively and critically on two postings by co-workers.

Weekly Writing, 5:1, Bob

For your post this week, write a metacognitive summary of your experience thus far in developing your unit-sized curriculum plan.

I am thinking about this final project in light of my work.   We have, for as long as I remember, been self-aware of ourselves as a source and place of significant learning.   Even though that learning was not recognized or valued as an aim of the institution.   Alas, over the last couple of years I have focused more on my direct reports and on the overall organization.   I have found this assignment refreshing a way for me to get back to the roots of developing young people as future employees.

I found my conversation with my classmate to be rewarding.   Indeed, she suggested some ways to sequence the online portion of our training and some content as well.   I believe I will steal her ideas with wild abandon.   In particular, she suggested including our organizational mission and vision statements as an opening unit — obvious as the nose on my face.   Alas, I have lived so intimately with those statements over the last three years and as we enter another round of strategic planning, I am again immersed in them — so that I forgot that, my employees might not be familiar with them.   That is a little embarrassing and humbling.   I had as well forgotten about, or perhaps suppressed the memory of the work we had done on creating career paths for our student employees.   I forgot about it because of internal politics and new structural configuration and because my responsibilities became focused on the supervisors of students rather than the students themselves.  This course has reminded me to revisit this project one that was very important to me four or so years ago.  Work that was done and then undone by structural and political changes in our organization.  It is nice to remember this and to find that I still have a passion for it.  Often times our organizational ebb and flow along with eroding our work erodes our spirit — in this case I still feel the importance of getting this right for our student employees.

I am relishing the challenge of using our lms (Moodle) to create a blended/flipped on line learning environment for our student employees.   We (Colby College) subscribe to Lynda campus and we have a wealth of training materials readily available.   Similarly, YouTube offers many interesting resources, even as credible as some of the purchased materials.   Alas, what we build in that lms is behind firewalls and passwords.   So part of my struggle is how to present for the course the work, my version of the work.   I distinguish this because I am running parallel projects simultaneously.   My team met with our Instructional Designer on Friday, for an introduction to Moodle.   Some of the material I have written for this unit was used as examples in that session.   But soon that will become a shared creative space my team will start to create content and conversations will open up about all aspects of including this new tool in our real work.     In truth, I take the greater reward from that process.   Even ten years ago, it was still about me, and my ideas, but anymore I take the greater satisfaction from teamwork from building up my direct reports and their work with our student supervisors.   So there is something artificial in the work I am doing for this course — I will do it, but I find it less satisfying and less rich.

I think that two interesting points of learning or remembering have come out of the course content.   One regards the theories about learning: behavioristic, cognitive, constructionist, and connectionist; the other regards the various taxonomies, not so much about writing learning outcomes, rather more in recognizing that learning and performance are occurring at higher levels whereas we are assessing at levels of adequacy.   Much of our conversation about excellence is because of observation and of fair and if not objective then at least systematic assessment.   However, we talk about it anecdotally, subjectively, more importantly so much more of it is occurring and we are missing it because we are not looking for it.   I am thinking about how to use this insight to create a better workplace, how to capture excellence and duplicate it.

Weekly Writing, 4.3, Bob

  • What have you learned about integrated course design, taxonomies of learning, active learning, or problem-based learning?
  • How is the online learning environment working for you? What are the advantages and/or the challenges of taking this class in this format?
  • What have you learned about yourself during this unit? Have you discovered anything new about your own learning styles or preferences? Have you developed any new strategies that help you learn more effectively?

I summarize integrated course design with three insights I have picked up through the course and with Fink’s five elements.

First, creating community — this is a lifelong benchmark or touchstone for me, and my thinking about any enterprise.   In 1987, I attended the Alaska statewide conference on creating community in Sitka.   It was a formative experience for me.      Similarly, Robert Putnam’s book Bowling Alone reminded me of these values.   Creating, even briefly for a place-time, a community of learning is something that I can support, even get invigorated by.

Second flipping the classroom so that content is learned outside the contact time and contact time is used for specific application, is a new notion for me.   Though, as I have mentioned another framing of the concept: extending or continuing the conversation beyond the moment of the classroom is a practice I have celebrated for years.

Third, helping learners solve real problems or problems formulated in a real world format. Learners do what it is they are learning to do.   This is a closely held value in both my criticism of my schooling and as I have tried to help, my employees learn to do their jobs.   I think the first, most articulate, formulation of it came from reading Eliot Wiggington’s, Sometimes a Shining Moment.

Finks’ five:

  1. What are the important situational factors in a particular course and learning situation?
  2. What should our full set of learning goals be?
  3. What kinds of feedback and assessment should we provide?
  4. What kinds of teaching and learning activities will suffice, in terms of achieving the full set of learning goals we set?
  5. Are all the components connected and integrated, that is, are they consistent and supportive of each other?

I am comfortable in an online learning environment.   In particular, this course with its collaborative approach to blogging and commenting is effective for me.   It makes sense to take a course about teaching and learning online… well, online.   Indeed, it would be a little odd to take it in a solely face-to-face environment.   Where we are having frequent synchronous sessions, it would be easy to see this in a blended environment too.

I have a theoretical understanding of integrated course design.   However, because I am not a teacher I lack the details of practical experience with integrated course design.   I lack the repetition of daily practice.   I also understand a little bit more about how I include my direct reports in making the content of our training, indeed every aspect of our workplace, for our student employees.   I feel hampered not having their contribution and insights into the work.     That insight has raised the question for me, about how teachers can create courses on their own.   I know that in my situation professors frequently design courses on their own.   Sometimes core courses are informed by conversations and are practically designed by individuals.   This is a significant difference from how work is done in many other work places.   I wonder how much better courses would be if along with the content expert were a team of an instructional designer and an assessment specialist.

My own learning is less of a matter for reflection at this point in the course.   Rather, I am focused on my target demographic for the “course’ we are designing as our final project.   Getting out of my own head and into theirs is the challenge.   That empathic exercise however is important.   I have been reading in popular writings about the generational differences between “Boomers’ and “Millennials.’     I am trying to avoid over generalizations like: “Kids these days….’   Rather, there are very specific differences in expectations and experience and I cannot gloss those details if I hope to facilitate learning in that demographic.

Fink, L. D. (2013).  Creating Significant Learning Experiences: An Integrated Approach to Designing College Courses. San Fancisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Putnam RD. (2000). Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community.   New York: Simon & Schuster.

Wigginton, B.E. (1985). Sometimes a shining moment: The Foxfire experience.  New York: Anchor Books.

 

Weekly Writing 4.2, Bob

In your writing post this week, discuss the value of taxonomies for defining student learning, with specific examples from your subject area. Attach your learning objectives and concept map. (Don’t forget to provide the title or topic of your lesson plan.) It is particularly important that you review classmates’ posts this week and provide feedback on their learning objectives. Identifying outcomes and writing clear objectives is a challenging task; I’m confident you will all benefit by giving and receiving critique on this assignment!

This is the first time in a long time where I have floundered with an assignment.     The concept map tools were just perplexing for me.   I went to each website and tried each interface.   I placed shapes and drew links between them in order to see how the tools worked.   Then I stared blankly at the interface.   I simply could not see how or why to use them to accomplish work — this work.     Therefore, I have no conceptual maps to submit.   Obviously, I feel some defensiveness — what is wrong with me?   I talked with my wife about how she might use them.   The process she described was helpful in developing an understanding of the tool.   Alas, it was an alien process for me.   I might doodle some circles and lines on a notepad, or create category headings.   Conceptual models for me grow out of sentences, and paragraphs and finally essays.   I may edit those down to bullet points for professional writing, for final presentation.   I might use the mind maps afterword to create a diagram or a flowchart to illustrate a workflow analysis — but probably not.   I am just never likely to use these tools.   Perhaps it is good for me to know about them in order to share them with learners or co-workers….

Turning to the objective builder, I resonated with the Radio James Objective builder tool.   I see two related uses: one in writing job descriptions and tasks in a workflow, second, in creating employee training.   I love the simplicity and interactivity of the tool and once you have outcomes drafted you simply highlight, cut, and paste them to a working document.   Interestingly, I find that for most tasks in our workplace I do not need the highest-level functions from entry-level employees.   I do not need them to create, or evaluate, and only occasionally to analyze.   Rather, I need high functioning with application, understanding and remembering.   My supervisors will operate more frequently with analysis, and evaluation yet only occasionally at the creation level.

A related difference is that rarely in our workplace do we engage in creative work alone.   It is usually in a group.   In addition, this was another hang up with this week’s assignment.   “Write three learning outcomes’ — this is work done in a team in our workplace.     I also struggled with the scope of this assignment.   I selected:

  • Emergency Procedures
  • Photocopier/Printers
  • Professional Demeanor

Trying to write this in entirety in six hours was just not possible, and I missed my team and their energy and insight.   Two of these are easier to write outcomes for; emergency procedures and troubleshooting and maintaining printers/photocopiers, as both have “correct’ answers.   I can be quite behavioristic in my formulation of these outcomes.   For example, evacuating the building has one right outcome and one right process.   Similarly getting paper jams out of a copier, filling paper trays, and exchanging toner cartridges all have specific steps and a single final decision either the machine is working again, or it is not and an out of order sign is affixed to it and the matter reported to a supervisor.

However, in including “professional demeanor’ I vastly exceeded what could be done in the allotted time.   Yet, this is perhaps the most interesting of the outcomes I identified.   It is inherently subjective, inherently situational.   Offering feedback to employees on this skill is an art, and an iterative process as they self-correct to approximate an improvement on subjective outcome.    I selected eight elements to address; appearance, reliability, competence, ethics, phone etiquette, written communication, self/workspace organization, and accountability.   These were selected after Googling the topic and reviewing a number of blogs and online articles — a very different, but very realistic way that a lot of work in the workplace gets started.   The point in academic writing is to create original or uncommon knowledge, however, the point in writing for the workplace is to find a norm and build around that.   Likewise, there is no point in attributing common knowledge and I am certain that various documents and web pages that we have created have likewise been appropriated — and I cannot care.

Turning to Appearance, my first stab at writing outcomes sounds like this:

  • Exemplify professionalism through dressing appropriately for this workplace,
  • Understand that smiling when you greet customers and co-workers can convey confidence, enthusiasm and may begin to diffuse difficult conversations.
  • Apply this understanding in using appropriate facial expression in the matching communication situation — do not smile or laugh while a customer is obviously angry or upset, for example.

Appropriate dress in a college work place tends to be more casual, though at times ties, coats and pantsuits are called for.   However, we understand that students are not going to return to their rooms and change for work.   Therefore, for young men we ask for colored shirts, young women we ask them to avoid or to cover tank tops, for examples.   We actively discourage showing up in gym clothes or pajamas.   Our point is not to die on this hill but rather to start to sensitize the young people to the issue.   I asked one of my student supervisors to come in early this morning because the new President was hosting an event in the library — on his own he offered that he would dress up a bit.   That is a successful outcome.   To my mind, it shows competence at the comprehension level of Bloom’s taxonomy.   I do not need the Supervisor to evaluate or judge the merit of dressing appropriately — I need them to judge the situation and dress appropriately for it.

Perhaps then, the employee is actually operating significantly higher level then I imagined….

Turning to the next performance indicator:

Reliability

Exemplify professionalism by —

  • Showing up for your shift a few minutes early, working through your checklist of chores immediately, and communicating about sharing the chores with your co-worker.
  • If you need to miss a shift for legitimate reasons arrange for shift coverage as soon as you learn of your need.
  • If you are ill contact either or both your student supervisor or Branch coordinator at the earliest possible time and ask for shift coverage.
  • If you offer to cover a co-worker’s shift make certain that you follow through.
  • Any service promise you make to a customer needs to be executed upon and completed. This may involve clearly communicating with a co-worker or supervisor since the actual work maybe done by another.

To my mind a young person who behaved in these ways would be competent in behaving with professional demeanor as regards reliability.   Extending this and returning to Bloom’s taxonomy I think they would be at the analysis level.   My reasoning being that if I asked them to tell me why these behaviors were important they would be able to explain.   The occasions we see student employees achieve synthesis is on their return from abroad or from internships where they compare their workplace experiences or experiences with service providers and demonstrate insight into why we prioritize reliability among our employees.   They may continue and evaluate these differences but in truth I am not seeking there feedback on what we have determined to be workplace appropriate.   Said differently I am not looking for them to evaluate but to abide by these norms.

So what I am struggling with here is that we may well be successfully teaching to a higher level, but we do not need to evaluate performance at that level….

This gets us back to a question asked by Owen in a comment — he wondered how I would apply cognitive and constructivist and connectionist theories of learning to workplace behavior.   I am wondering about that as well.   I suspect the value of such a theoretical enterprise is in being self-reflective about our process.   I am struggling a little bit with these taxonomies and theories.   It is interesting to realize that my employees may be actually learning at high levels, synthesizing, evaluating and judging but I do not see it because I am not looking for it.   I need them to operate at the mid-level for most functions and that is sufficient.   However, I wonder if higher order outcomes are occurring; so then what more can be accomplished were we to pay attention to that?   Alternatively, if our evaluation of excellence might be more objectively informed by these higher order levels of learning.   I wonder if it might be more repeatable if we are using better theories to interpret behavior can we in turn get better behavior more frequently.   Given the pressure, we are under to generate customer enthusiasm I suspect I have some hard work to do in more precisely recognizing and capitalizing on student employee’s work in analysis, synthesis and evaluation.   This bends back around to generating rubrics as well.   Creating rubrics will probably break me as well.     I have to say this is humbling.   It is also starkly revealing in how different the work of teachers and employers is.

Above I say: “For example, evacuating the building has one right outcome and one right process.’   And I ask now do I really mean it?   Nothing is more subjective than emergency response; nothing is more dependent upon correct judgment.   For example, evacuating during a drill is a rote routine.   However, imagine clearing a building with a real fire burning.   All of a sudden, my behavior may change radically.   I may carry a fire extinguisher with me.   I may access floors through cut-through or stairwells previously not used.   My goal is to empty the building completely and systematically and to get myself out safely.   If I limit my employees to rote protocol, I might kill them or a customer.   If I encourage them to operate at higher levels, I might save lives and speed the process.

Emergency Procedures

  • Locate First aid kit, fire extinguisher, Light switches, panic button, and emergency call list
  • Explain how to use; First aid kit, fire extinguisher, Light switches, panic button, emergency call list
  • Properly execute a building evacuation for fire alarm,

This is inadequate.   I have to dig deeper.   I have to explore objectives that employ verbs, like solve, use, prepare, or infer, question, select, even more, plan, modify, and rearrange, and again, evaluate, interpret, and justify.

I do not think I can do this in the time allotted or on my own or once and for all.