When I posed the question, “Since instructors are so busy, how could they implement technology into their teaching,” one of the responses I got was, “We don’t.” True, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There are small, manageable tools that you can use in your teaching tomorrow. And by tomorrow, I mean . . . tomorrow. Technology integration is not an urban legend. It exists. And it doesn’t have to be hard.
One way to do this is through blogging. One simple lesson you can use is student reflections. Choose your most recent assignment and simply ask the students what they learned. If they already have a Google account – and I bet they do – then they have Blogger, so you don’t even need to deal with the hassle of creating a new account.
The following video is my version of the research written by Giuliana Dettori and Valentina Lupi (2009) called, “Using a Narrative Blog to Support Reflection in a Blended Course.” Student language teachers were asked to use reflection blogs, and it might have gone something like this.
Using the scale by Saadé at al. (2007) (as noted by Dettori, 2007), the instructors found value in this exercise for, “several [reasons] that can be taken as indicators of success: affect (i.e. pleasure or discontent), learner’s perception of the course, perceived learning outcomes, attitude, motivation.” The teachers liked this type of exercise and one reason for this was the feedback they got from their colleagues. A writing format is also ideal for reflective exercises. This type of work is not easily done through conversation, at least with as much openness and honesty.
Some things to think on:
- Does this seem manageable to you? Could you ask your students to do an online reflection in the next week?
- If not a blog, could you start with a notebook then build up to an interactive blog?
- Other thoughts?
This is a crazy easy exercise you can use. Think about it. I would love to hear from you all. Please post comments! Stay tuned next week for a guest blogger!
Dettori, G. & Lupi, V. (2009). Using a Narrative Blog to Support Reflection in a Blended Course. Wang, F., Fong, J., Zhang, L. & Lee, V. (Eds.) Hybrid Learning and Education: Second International Conference, ICHL 2009, Macau, China, August 25-27, 2009. Proceedings. DOI 10.1007/978-3-642-03697-2_26
Saadé, R.G., He, X., Kira, D. (2007). Exploring dimensions to online learning. Computers in Human
Behaviour 23, 1721–1739.