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Proposal for Instructional Visioning Initiative (DRAFT)

NOTE:  What follows is a VERY rough draft of raw ideas.  The first two items below are just to define some terms which I then use further down in the "proposal".  There are some big gaps where in the process that need to be filled in which may be a good topic for a call.

Some New Thoughts from Josh after 9-23-09 Call:

  • The process outlined below would take a long time to complete, if we want to influence Sakai 3 work a more rapid process may be needed.
  • A clearer line is needed to separate "tool-centric or functional visioning" and the more strategic "instructional visioning".  The process below may end up being better suited for tactical tool-centric visioning.
  • I'm starting to feel that "instructional visioning" needs to be about:
    • The future - What technologies are on the "instructional horizon" that we need to be planning for and prepared to support?
    • Innovation - How do we support types of instruction outside of the "status quo" (i.e. lecture format)? What are our students expecting from a learning perspective and how do we support it?
  • A valuable role for the T&L group to play would be in identifying "instructional intersections points" between tools.  These would be places where instructional practices would benefit by having two or more tools integrate with each other.  These instructional integration points may not be obvious to the teams development the tools.  This type of work might be better aligned with "tool-centric" visioning rather than "instructional visioning" (???).

    Something to look at: The Horizon Report put out each year by the New Media Consortium might be interesting to look at as a potential model for some of our work.  It identifies overarching trends in teaching and learning and key technologies that have a 1-5 year window with regards to their impact on on education.

Instructional Themes and Sub-Themes - These would be similar to the "action verbs" concept that OSP and others have been using.  We might view these through the lens of "learning interactions" which make up the instructional process.  These "learning interactions" are: Interactions with content, interactions with subject matter experts (i.e. instructor, etc.), interactions with peers and interactions with assessments.

End-user Interviews/Brainstorming Sessions - These would be similar to the work that Stanford and the UX group is engaged in around redesigning Tests & Quizzes but geared towards less tool-centric visioning and more towards open-ended technology agnostic brainstorming.  How to best capture the output from such sessions in a way that would be useful to others (e.g. developers) is unclear and something that need to be fleshed out.

Process Workflow - The Teaching and Learning group would engage in a process that would focus on a specific instructional "theme" or "sub-theme" each month with the following workflow.

  1. Week One - Theme or sub-theme would be proposed (on list/confluence) and then discussed during weekly T&L conference call.
  2. Week Two - Plan for end-users Interviews/brainstorming sessions would be developed and discussed during weekly T&L conference call.
  3. Week Three - End-user interviews/brainstorming sessions would be conducted and outcomes captured, T&L call might be skipped this week.
  4. Week Four - Documented outcomes would be discussed and reviewed on T&L call and a decision would be made to move onto a new theme or continue on the same theme the following month.

Draft Example - Here is a rough example of what this might look like in real life...I think it is important to emphasize that need to develop a process that is realistic in how much time people have to commit to it (which will be small).

  1. Under the theme of "interactions with content" we identify (via list discussions/confluence) several sub-themes, such as:
    1. Authoring - Instructor needs to create media-rich content easily
    2. Annotating - Instructor or learner wants to annotate content either privately or publicly
    3. Tagging - Instructor or learner wants to tag content for future reference/searching
    4. Sharing/Distributing - Instructor wants to distribute content to learners
    5. Presenting - Instructor wants to present materials to students
    6. Guiding - Instructors wants to guide students through content in a structured fashion
  2. During our weekly call we would discuss these sub-themes and consider grouping them into categories that would make sense to discuss with end-users at the same time.  For example, we might group authoring, annotating and tagging into one category and then develop a specific plan for structuring a brainstorming session around this category.  Just as one example, participants in the session could be ask to write down one concept related to the sub-theme category and then pass it to the next person who would have to build on or add to the idea (this is just a thought...we need people with expertise in facilitating such sessions to help flesh this out more...we may also want to see what type of "brainstorming software" might be available to help support this process).
  3. Each participating institution would then need to run the brainstorming/end-user interview session locally.  We would likely skip that week's call in order to free up people's time.  Everyone would need to then share the output from the sessions which may be done on Confluence or another tools designed for capturing such things.
  4. We would then come back together on a call to discuss the output a final time and decide if we wanted to move onto a new sub-theme/category or continue collecting input on the same one (possibly from a difference audience or with a different focus).
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  1. Unknown User (

    In the identification of "interactions with content" sub-themes (the list of verbs in point 1), I'm sure that we would include those that come from the student point of view as well, yes?