‘Blowing my own digital trumpet’ #DSCHOLAR

I’ve had a bit of gap since my last post due to a number of big projects coming to an end (CMALT, #Mahoodle18 and the compilation of an internal TEL review), but I am now ready to continue my journey into recognising and practicing digital scholarship.

As mentioned previously, research and teaching are not a requirement of my job, but I do support those who do, and will also dip my (extremely pointed) toes into teaching and research whenever I can. Therefore these notes are just for my own personal consumption, as I am sure you will glean from the Digital Scholar course what you need for your own practice.

Recognition:

  • A good online identity should go hand-in-hand with ‘traditional’ means of academic clout, however those assessing your output may not deem it worthy during review periods or for promotions. For me, I feel that it is important to share what I am doing, after all I seem to held in higher regard externally for my work on ePortfolios and online learning than I do by my own institution.
  • Twitter can give academics a voice in an otherwise crowded physical room where the ‘celebrities’ often take centre stage. Cases of ‘oh yeah I know you from twitter’ or ‘I saw your tweet the other week’ can be a great ice-breaker when meeting people in real life.
  • Try to build in openness from the start – you get out of it what you put in.
  • Being more visible online could lead to an increase in citations and invitations to participate in projects and to keynote. This is particularly true in my case as through twitter I have made connections that have led to 3 invitations to keynote in Germany, New Zealand and in Ireland.
  • For PDR purposes, keynoting is great for two reasons: 1) Reputation: demonstrates that I have gained a significant standing in my field of interest, and have influenced the decisions of others based on my own findings, and 2) Impact: everyone at the event would have seen my presentation!

So, should we try and measure open practice by traditional means?  I say no in my case, but it would be nice for those way above me to recognise the impact I’m having outside the walls of my institution.

“We continually make the error of subjugating technology to our present practice rather than allowing it to free us from the tyranny of past mistakes”

Stephen Heppell (2001)

Image: https://pixabay.com/en/colorful-prismatic-chromatic-1312965/ 
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2 papers accepted for MoodleMoot IE & UK 2016!

I am so excited to be presenting not just once, but twice at this year’s MoodleMoot IE & UK 2016. Both Aurélie and I each had an idea for a paper – leading on one, supporting the other with theirs if they were accepted. Therefore we are so happy that both were approved and we get to share two Moodle stories with the delegates this year.

Our abstracts are below:

Presentation 1:  Tuesday @ 15:00 – room B
Enhancing group assessment with Moodle, Mahara and Turnitin

MMT2A group portfolio can sometimes appear as a disjointed collection of documents, often lacking a cohesive narrative running through it. At Cranfield Defence and Security (one of four schools at Cranfield University), the decision was made to trial an online collaborative space to compile a digital portfolio to be used as an assessed piece of groupwork.  The Module Manager for the Systems Engineering Workshop module, part of the MSc in Systems Engineering for Defence Capability, had used the Mahara ePortfolio platform in the past to create an online digital poster and wanted to see if it could encourage his students to work together more as a group to compile a richer and more structured reflective online Portfolio.

This presentation will show you how three learning systems, Moodle, Mahara and Turnitin, were collectively used to support and deliver the week-long module:

Moodle – the ‘lynchpin’
to provide pre-reading/activities to complete prior to the start of the module

Mahara – the student space
to give the students the space to compile their group portfolio, discuss ideas, and collect evidence and artefacts

Turnitin – the assessment & feedback tool
to allow students to submit their work and for the assessors to write their feedback

Feedback and reflections from the students, lecturer and learning technologists will be shared throughout this talk, along with a showcase of how Mahara was used to create bespoke learning resources, along with the students’ finished portfolios.

Presentation 2:  Wednesday @ 15:15 – room B
Improving Turnitin Inductions with Moodle and Open Badges

Turnitin BadgeCranfield Defence and Security is one of four schools at Cranfield University. Based at the UK Defence Academy, our students are all mature learners studying post-graduate qualifications in engineering, science, acquisition, management or leadership. 

All students submit all coursework to Turnitin during their studies. They undertake a face-to-face Turnitin induction in an IT lab at the start of their studies. This allows them to get an overview of the tool and to see how the useful features such as the filters, similarity matches and feedback options work, as well as going through the process of submitting a document.

In our presentation, we will show you how we used a Moodle course with activities to guide the students through their induction. Upon completion of these activities, the students are rewarded with an Open Badge. This badge has been shown to be a great motivator for them to complete the training. All those who fail to obtain the badge are reported to their Course Director and may be prevented from submitting further coursework.

We will also share how we refined our training during the academic year after evaluating the initial launch in September 2015 and the reaction from our staff and students to Open Badges. We will demonstrate how we set up the Moodle course for the automation to work.

This will be my second ever MoodleMoot – last one was over 5 years ago! Looking forward to seeing everyone there,

Sam x

 

Our #iMoot15 presentation

Everything is now set and ready for mine and Aurélie’s iMoot15 presentations. We are presenting at:

  • 4pm Thursday 28th May
  • 10am Friday 29th May

(This is UK time)

We now have our iMoot Moodle page up-and-running for those who want to get a brief overview of what we will be doing, as well as a ‘where are you’ survey using google forms and google maps. If you fancy trying to set one up yourself, this video will help you:

We had some fun last week testing Big Blue Button – the software that we’ll be using to present with. We couldn’t find anywhere that could hold a decent wifi/network connection on the base, nor could we download Java onto our machines (restrictions on downloads to computers), so instead Aurélie went back to her house and tried presenting from there – and thankfully it worked 🙂

bbbtest

We were seriously considering at one point presenting from the McDonald’s that’s situated outside the base’s entrance, but then we saw this… 😉

So, we’re ready and can’t wait to get going! There are so many presentations that I’m looking forward to too. Although it does feel strange presenting on something other than Mahara.