INTE 5340 Final Reflection

Final Course Reflection for INTE5340 Digital Storytelling

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You as a learner in this course: How did you learn in this course?  How do you understand your social learning practices given theory shared by L&K and other authors? How might your experiences in this course inform how you learn in the future, whether in formal (graduate) coursework or when pursuing your own interests?  In what ways do you understand yourself a connected learner, someone networked into other communities (like DS106) and also linked with other people?

Digital Storytelling INTE5340 was the perfect course in which to end my graduate school program in Information and Learning Technologies for K-12 education. This course drew upon many of the skills I had learned in the program over the last two years and also expanded my ideas about learning and teaching online through multimodal stories. Learning, in this course, was a process of interaction and the collaboration of ideas through open annotation, social media, and creative exploration.

Lankshear and Knobel’s book New Literacies not only redefined the concept of literacy, not just as reading and writing but, “socially recognized ways of generating, communicating and negotiating meaningful content through the medium of encoded texts within contexts of participation in Discourses” (Lankshear and Knobel 2006, 64) but took this further to include new ways of learning. In chapter 7 of this book the concepts of “pushing out” vs “pulling in” information described the way learning is traditionally the act of accepting and absorbing dictated material that is out of context. A new way of learning, which I participated in this course, is to learn through the context of doing/being, with interaction with others, subjects and material that is of a personal and academic interest. This way of learning gives ownership to the student and creates opportunities for skills that are limitless. I intend to pursue my own professional and personal scholarship in the future in just this way and add an element of this pedagogy to my teaching in any way I can.

Joining the “pulling in” learning concept with Jenkins chapter on Communities of Readers, Clusters of Practices emphasized the positive contributions that participatory culture and networked learning can have on education. I found that I am always learning through my personal learning network which includes social media and information outlets. Like most people, I learn best in communication and collaboration with others and am a proponent for open source learning.

Your co-design of this course: How was this course different from prior (graduate) courses?  How did you contribute to the development of this course and our learning community? In what ways were you responsible for directing both your own learning and also the shared experiences of peers/others? How would you have designed this course differently?

This course was very different from the other classes I have taken in this program, which were primarily based in the LMS Canvas. Digital Storytelling INTE5340 used a variety of platforms including a blog, twitter, Canvas, DS106 and Hypothes.is. As a participant in this course, I provided material through my submissions of DS106 assignments, Daily Creates, my reading responses, reflections and story critiques. The requirement of annotating other participant’s work and them mine contributed to the development of learning in this community. By choosing my own particular focal theme in which to focus my personal scholarship readings and DS106 Assignments, along with being able to choose my own projects in the DS106 assignment bank, allowed me to direct my own learning. This system was also beneficial for everyone since members of this course then learned about a variety of topics and saw a variety of digital stories which were shared through Twitter, on blogs and in Hypothes.is. There is nothing I would change about this course.

Your understanding of pedagogy: How do you understand Remi and Lisa’s course design and ongoing decision-making?  As many of you are educators (whether in K-12, higher ed, or corporate settings), how did this course change your understanding of pedagogy?  Has your understanding of “instructor” changed, and if so, how? What feedback would you like to share with Remi and Lisa?

As I have learned throughout this program, and in this course, the role of instructor needs to be less of a lecturer and authority and more of a mentor, coach, and supervisor. Remi and Lisa did an excellent job supporting our learning by providing the theory and framework and letting us create our own understanding, explore our own interests, and support one another. Remi and Lisa both stepped in when asked or needed and provided the necessary guidance throughout this journey. I really appreciated all the work that went into designing this course, our participation with DS106 and the academic relationships I created through social media and annotating collaboratively.

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