SXSW: No Web Professional Left Behind: Educating the Next Generation

a link to The Interact Home Page

Leon Adkison (from WOW), Chris Mills, Stephanie Troeth, Aarron Walter. On Twitter: @waspinteract

Here’s a summary of the announcement of the WaSP Interact Curriculum in tweet sized bits. I posted these tweets during the panel as @vdebolt. In case you miss the point, the URL where the curriculum lives is,

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact Curriculum: Web Standards based new curriculum

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: best practices in teaching Web Design and Development

#sxswed Opera Web Standards Curriculum part of the solution

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: connecting the needs of industry with education best practices

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: Grand Opening!

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: Just Released!

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: connecting education and industry

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: best practices and skills for professional web designers

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: open, living curriculum

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: Six Learning Tracks

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: tracks are foundations, front-end dev, design, user science, SS dev, professional practice

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: courses include Internet Fundamentals, Web Design 1 & 2, Accessibility, DOM Scripting 1

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: courses include Findability, Digital Design Production, Information Arch 1

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: courses include Internship, Professional Practice, Independent Study

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: more courses in development

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact:  Core Competencies in every course

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: exam questions in every course

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: grading matrices for every assignment

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: ready-to-use rubrics and assignments

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: use the parts you want, adapt, integrate

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: contribute learning modules

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: contribute assignments

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: contribute a course

#sxsw #sxswed WaSP Interact: integration guide

As you can see from my Tweets, we really want to get the word out with a link to the new curriculum. Any help in that is appreciated. Please express yourself on how it works if you use it and contribute teaching modules if you can.

SXSW: Blackboards or Backchannels: The Techno-Induced Classroom of Tomorrow

Blackboard to Backchannel panel

Diana Kimball, Alex Leavitt, Kabren Levinson, Archana Ramachandran, Kelly Sutton. All students. They talked about social networks in education.

All are working on something as students that relates to technology in education.

Ramachandran. It is possible to reach masses of people through systems available now. It can connect both faculty and students. Not all people use every technology, which is a drawback. If the idea for the techology comes from peers rather than faculty, students may be more open to it. She sees it more for social use rather than classroom purposes.

Sutton is playing devil’s advocate for low tech. keg parties and no need for social technology to participate in class or meet people.

Levinson. An open laptop in class is a huge wall. An obstruction to the talk. Maybe Sutton’s not the only Luddite. He sees the best use of technology in the classroom outside the classroom in off hours. Creating a class blog to use outside the classroom. Comment on other peoples work outside of class. Relationships start in real life but are carried beyond that.

They then took a question from Twitter! (this cracked me up!) Having a conversation about personal coversations based on something from Twitter.

Kimball. The Internet accelerates serendipity. The more people thinking about the same thing at the same time, serendipity happens. She runs a question tool for the class where she’s TA. It’s the backchannel for the class. She said it gets very lively and that she learns a lot from being in the backchannel. The backchannel chatter shows that people are intentionally engaged. People in the class don’t use the backchannel at all. It’s almost like two classes going on at the same time. Can have one professor and a bunch of mediators to help aggregate information and questions. There’s no absence, only presence when only the active people are visible. You may see that other people are participating passively, but they aren’t visibly passive or pulling down the class atmosphere.

Kimball. Does the Internet make the unimportant things easier so that the important things can be productively difficult?

Sutton. LMU bought 60 laptops for K-12. Says no one knows how to use them. Is he talking about students using them? Ramachandran says kids don’t have the maturity to use techology like laptops with good results.

Kimball. Think of it as murder mystery and look at everyone’s motives. Kids want to convince teachers that they need laptops, but teachers don’t understand that need or maybe are techno-phobic. Will kids get the idea that teachers don’t understand anything? Leavitt. Students with resources teachers don’t have use it against teachers.

Woman to watch in tech: Diana Kimball. She’s bright, articulate, knowledgeable. I predict a bright, shiny future for this young woman. Not that the rest of the students on this panel aren’t bright, but she really makes sense.

Kimball. Use tools you like just because you like them. (kick ass, eh Kathy Sierra?) Then students can learn a lot from each other. Levinson touts outside of class projects again. Ramachandran. Future students will learn more on their own and the teacher needs to be more of a mentor than a conveyor of information.


SXSW: Edupunk: Open Source Education

Blackboards or Backchannels panel

Jim Groom, Stephen Downs, Gardner Campbell, Barbara Ganley

Edupunk an approach that results from a DIY attitude and brings the attitude of 70s punk rock bands to the classroom.

Campbell. Tools to put course content online in the 90s we are problematic content delivery model. It’s become a business system rather than a relational driven system.

Groom. LMS is a corporate logic system. It isn’t about learning. Need to think about going other ways.

Downs. Internet teaches us that we don’t need to preserve power authority to learn. Ed designed by people doing the learning is what he’s advocating.

Groom. WordPress Multi User is a communal sharing of resources in education. It’s not about a course, it’s about an individual.

Ganley. It is no longer working inside schools, but thinking in communities of learners.

They talked about open courseware and ways to interact with people without using LMS and if there is a way. How do we access the culture? Do we understand our rights to education and information? How can everybody make stuff?

Audience member suggested the library as a way to structure learning outside the classroom model.

Ganley. Working with rural communities to pool resources from libraries and other community resources. Says it creates a sort of homogenized culture where there’s only one way to think.

Groom. Talked about Black Mountain College in the 50s where there was no structure. Just people in a library who wanted to learn. Public open spaces for learning are dwindling.

A guy from Washington U talked about the tyranny of nostalgia. He asked if universities are still worth it; if not, what are the other models. How do you justify the cost of university education when the content is available in other ways?

Campbell. The conversation needs to start and end with how we realize our human potential.

Downs. Taught an open course, a free course with 2200 participants. 24 people paid tutition because they wanted credit.

Audience member. How does a public school teacher help students do their own learning? Public schools need tools and standards to support them.

Groom. University education and what’s happening in K-12 are not unrelated. Can we imagine a way that people come out of universities without $100,000 in debt?

Ganley. There are ways to work with kids in public schools and to work with parents. Move outside the walls even when you’re in them.

Downs. Personal Learning Environment (Personal Learning Networks) collects people who are practitioners in a given are and have them do their work in an open enviroment. Those who are interested in that area can watch and listen as practitioners create their work. Some tools that put people together in these ways are coming but are not widespread.

Audience member. Universities are mired in tradition. How can they set up a system that gives easier access to new ideas? Campbell. Stop hosting on the .edu server. He uses his own server. Groom. Used his own server space and got things started from there. No channels, open source. WordPress blogs. Not tied with sign-on or university id. Completely separate. Audience member. What if you did something like this successfully on an .edu domain? Wouldn’t other universities follow?

School of Everything.

Ganley. We don’t take advantage of people in our own neighborhoods who are experts in things that could provide expertise.

People are walking out. What does that mean?

Downs. Don’t need a new model for schools. Need to turn schools over to the community.