Today begins week two of my EDTECH597 – Blogging in the Classroom (see EDTECH597 – Blogging In The Classroom). The students this week have a series of tasks to complete by the end of the week (i.e., midnight on Sunday).
- create an RSS reader account (I’ve recommended The Old Reader)
- add their instructor’s and all of their fellow students’ blogs to your RSS reader
- add additional blogs of interest to their RSS reader
- create a Twitter account
- follow their instructor’s and all of their fellow students
- post their first tweet (using the hashtag #EDTECH597)
- create a Feedburner account and add their blogs
The readings for this week include:
- Harrsch, M. (2003). RSS: The next killer app for education. Technology Source, 6(4). Retrieved from
- Prensky, M. (2001). Digital natives, digital immigrants – Part II: Do they really think differently? On the Horizon, 9(6). Retrieved from
- McKenzie, J. (2007). Digital nativism: Digital delusions and digital deprivation. From Now On, 17(2). Retrieved from
- Reeves, T.C. (2008). Do generational differences matter in instructional design? Online discussion presentation to Instructional Technology Forum from January 22-25, 2008 at
While not a requirement this week, I did ask them to post a blog entry that contains their thoughts about the whole generational differences issue.
The final activity for Week 1 in my EDTECH597 – Blogging In The Classroom is to create a Blogroll, so today it is time for me to update my blogroll.
Over the weekend, I went in and visited all of the blogs I had listed on my blogroll. I was looking for two things initially, the first was to make sure the link still worked and the second was to see if there had been an entry posted in 2013. It was nice to know that all of the ones listed were still online, although several hadn’t been updated in the past six months (some more than a year) – so I removed those ones.
Beyond checking the activity of the blogs (which did result in several being removed), I again went through my RSS reader and decided to add several new blogs to the blogroll.
Anyway, blogroll updated – Week 1 tasks complete!
As I mentioned yesterday (see EDTECH597 – About Michael Barbour Page), another one of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH597 – Blogging In The Classroom is for students to create an “About Me” page. Yesterday, I worked on the About Michael Barbour page, so today it is time to update the About VSM page…
Two years ago I revised the “About VSM” page extensively. I updated the tagline so that it does match the one found on the header above (and the RSS feed description). I also outlined the two purposes of this blog in list format to make it more apparent to the reader. In addition, I tightened up the language so the page is generally shorter. Finally, I added a larger header that was created for me a while back and made mention of the Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE) affiliation of this blog. Last year I mainly did some wordsmithing to the page.
This year I did some more wordsmithing, little more… Tomorrow the I will update the blogroll as the fourth and final introductory task!
Another one of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH597 – Blogging In The Classroom is for students to create an “About Me” page. In my case, I have two “About Me” pages – About Michael Barbour and About VSM. Dealing with the About Michael Barbour page today…
Over the past two summers for this activity, I reviewed and updated that particular “About Me” page. I added in my adjunct status at Boise State. In addition to the sentence or two that I added, I have also added numerous links in the page. I also updated the accounts that I listed in the widget to only the ones that I update on a regular basis. Finally, I added an image of myself (which I will need to update late this summer).
However, because of my new position that is up-coming later this summer, I have made some more changes to my “About Me” page to reflect that new status. Anyway, tomorrow will be the About VSM page…
One of the activities for Week 1 in my EDTECH597 – Blogging In The Classroom was for students to introduce themselves and talk about why they wanted to take this course. As I am hoping to model each of the activities I ask of the students, I wanted to post an entry that introduced myself as the instructor and explained why I wanted to create this course.
For those folks that don’t know me, my name is Michael Barbour and I’m an Assistant Professor of Instructional Technology/Educational Evaluation and Research at Wayne State University – and this summer an adjunct professor for the Department of Educational Technology at Boise State University. The courses I teach focus on the use of online tools in the classroom and qualitative research methods. My research interests focus on the use of K-12 online learning, particularly for students in rural jurisdictions. I’m originally from Newfoundland and Labrador, which is quite important to me. Those folks that follow this blog also know that I will be leaving Wayne State University this summer, as I have accepted a new position at Sacred Heart University.
In 2011, I was asked to design a course in blogging in the classroom for Boise State University. The reason I accepted the BSU suggestion stemmed from my own participation in previous blogging initiatives. Over the past couple of years, I have participated in 30 Days to Being a Better Blogger that Steve Dembo ran, I participated in the 31 Days to Build a Better Blog journey by ProBlogger Blog Tips, and I also participated in 7 Days to a Better EduBlog by Change Agency. I feel like I’ve gotten a lot out of these experiences, and I was wondering if I could take these experiences – along with my eight+ years of blogging (or it is nine now) – and turn them into a graduate level class that students would find useful. The course itself is a combination of “being a better blogger” activities and exploring various models of incorporating blogging into the classroom. It worked out pretty well the past two summers (although almost none of the students continued blogging after the course concluded – at least in the same space they had blogged during the course), so I’m looking forward to seeing how it all turns out this summer.