Monday, April 3, 2017

Why I Read Blogs

Why I Read Blogs – Keeping Up with the Latest in Educational Blogs
by Peg Balachowski, Associate Dean of Teaching and Learning
If you are reading this post, then you are a blog reader. As defined by Wikipedia, “A blog (a truncation of the expression weblog) is a discussion or informational website published on the World Wide Web consisting of discrete, often informal diary-style text entries ("posts").”

This blog, the The 5-Star Consortium, is written by members of the 5-Star Consortium College’s professional developers group, and is regularly updated with posts on a variety of topics including “What Would You Do Wednesday?” with classroom management scenarios that are all based on real situations. Other topics have included growth mindset and formative assessments. 

Why do I read blogs? My office bookshelves are crammed full of scholarly works that I keep meaning to read. At times it seems overwhelming – the thought of getting through several hundred pages of scholarly texts in a short amount of time (i.e. in addition to an already lost list of things to do) makes me a bit crazy. But blogs? I can get through them pretty quickly. They are meant to be short (mostly) and offer a variety of viewpoints. 

Here is a sampling of the blogs that I read with the title of the most recent post. I hope you enjoy reading them. 

Using an accessible syllabus to create an inclusive classroom: As we reach the end of one academic quarter and prepare for the next here at EvCC, you may find yourself thinking about updating the syllabus for one or more of the courses you’ll be teaching. Revisiting a syllabus is always a good opportunity to make some simple changes that can dramatically improve its accessibility. (Full disclosure – I am one of the contributors to this blog!)

High impact practices: Last month, I was at a meeting on my campus regarding High-Impact Educational Practices, where the discussion centered around the need to incorporate more of these practices into students’ educational experience.

How do students learn from participation in class discussion? Despite numerous arguments favoring active learning, especially class discussion, instructors sometimes worry that discussion is an inefficient or ineffective way for students to learn. What happens when students make non-value added, irrelevant, or inaccurate contributions?

Learning outside your comfort zone: When we learn something outside the comfort zone, we attempt to acquire knowledge or skills in an area where we’re lacking. Part of the discomfort derives from learning something we anticipate will be difficult. We have no idea how to do it, or we think it requires abilities we don’t have or have in meager amounts.

Find Open Access Articles Faster with UnPayWall: Have you heard of Unpaywall? It is a free Chrome/Firefox extension that helps you quickly find open access versions of articles you’re searching for.
Which of these is your favorite? Do you have blogs that you would suggest? We’d love to hear from you!

1 comment:

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