Unit 3, Activity 3: Visual Network Mapping

My visual network map consists of 4 main areas: Facebook (51 connections), Linkedin (3 connections), Discord – MALAT Program 2020 – 2022 (16 connections), and Slack – MALAT Program 2021- 2023 (26 connections). I currently only have one connection that that connects to two different areas, but I imagine this will change as I grow my Linkedin network. 

Here is the PDF of my visual network map since the image below is a bit small. 

Unit 2, Activity 3: Digital Identity Digital Presence Plan

As I mentioned in my visitor-resident map, I have purposely made my digital presence small, so being asked to cultivate it further isn’t a simple task. I recently listened to an interview with Noel Gallagher, and when asked about the reach and affect of his music, he said “once a song is out there, it doesn’t belong to you anymore” (RadioX, 2021, 06:17). This is the best way I can describe my hesitancy in cultivating a digital identity and digital presence (DIDP) – once it’s out there, it doesn’t belong to me anymore. I also take to heart the words of Schryver (2013) in “that much of what [I] post will last forever, and can be seen by anyone” (para. 16).

DIDP Goal

Jenkins (2013) offers a compelling point that “many people on YouTube are producing media because there’s something vitally they want to share” (02:18). I propose that this can also apply to a person’s DIDP. Right now, I don’t really know what I want to vitally share; I am still relatively new and getting to know the field of learning and technology and haven’t found my niche. So, while I may not be in a position to share, I am in the position to learn, so the overall goal of my DIDP is to immerse myself in the field of learning and technology to find areas of interest and connect with individuals who can share their experiences with me.

DIDP Strategies and Approaches

My first approach is to grow my Linkedin network as I currently only have 3 connections. I’m typically a quality over quantity type of person, so I’m not going to designate a specific number of connections, but rather I plan to connect with those that I can learn from and potentially work and collaborate with.

My second approach is to start a digital portfolio to showcase my work to potential employers. During my break after LRNT 522, I am considering taking the IDOL courses Academy as it will give me the opportunity to start building a portfolio and light the fire under my feet to ensure it gets done. I can then supplement this portfolio with work from the MALAT program when I return next spring.    

Measuring Success

Measuring the success of these approaches will mainly stem from my own satisfaction that I was able to accomplish them. While that may sound like a cop-out, I don’t want to rely on the number of connections I make or the number of visits to my portfolio to measure their success. Since I am breaking away from my comfort zone, I don’t want the added pressure of not achieving a numbers goal – I want my DIDP’s success to be based on its authenticity, and as said by Watters (2015), its ability “to track [my] growth and demonstrate [my] new learning” (para. 19) over the course of this program and my career.

 

References

Jenkins, H. (2013, May 7). Henry Jenkins on Participatory Culture (Big Thinkers Series) [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gPm-c1wRsQ&

Radio X. (2021, April 29). Noel Gallagher reflects on being attached on stage [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHvQsWwDYEk

Schryver, K. (2013, February 5). Who Are You Online? Considering Issues of Web Identity. The New York Times blogs. https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/05/guest-post-who-are-you-online-considering-issues-of-web-identity/

Watters, A. (2015, July 15). The Web We Need To Give Students. Bright. https://brightthemag.com/the-web-we-need-to-give-students-311d97713713#.a2rmav7fp

 

 

Thoughts on Dave Cormier’s Alternative Tension Pair

Dave Cormier (2018) proposes an interesting addendum to Dave White’s Visitor-Resident typology by considering where professional practice fits within the mapping activity. With regards to my own visitor-resident typology map, considering professional practice does not change where my current entries fall, but rather causes more to be added (e.g., printer, digital camera, etc.). Unexpectedly, Cormier’s post did cause me to reflect on digital practices and “how digital a particular practice really is” (para. 10).

Cormier’s question on whether email is a digital practice led me to liken this to the nuances that must be considered when defining digital learning. Recently, I interviewed a former colleague for an assignment in LRNT 525. The topic was about leadership and change management but framed in a digital learning context. When I was asked to define digital learning, despite being 3 courses into the MALAT program, I wasn’t sure exactly how to define it.

Sousa and Rocha (2019) concede that digital learning is complex, and define it using Kyndt et al’s definition “as an unplanned and implicit process with unpredictable results using several types of technological devices like smartphones, tablets, computers, and others” (p. 328) – so does this mean that MALAT synchronous sessions aren’t digital learning? On the other hand, Warschauer (2007) acknowledges that digital learning “relates to how students learn” (p. 44) – so does this mean that students in a classroom using a digital practice (e.g., computer) are solely in a digital learning environment?

I hope as I progress through this program I will be able to find the answers to these questions.

 

References

Cormier, D. (2018, March 31). Digital Practices Mapping – Intro activity for digital literacies course [web log]. http://davecormier.com/edblog/2018/03/31/digital-practices-mapping-intro-activity-for-digital-literacies-course/

Sousa Maria José, & Rocha Álvaro. (2019). Digital learning: developing skills for digital transformation of organizations. Future Generation Computer Systems91, 327–334. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.future.2018.08.048

Warschauer, M. (2007). The paradoxical future of digital learning. Learning Inquiry1(3), 219–219. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11519-007-0022-0

Unit 2, Activity 2: Resident-Visitor Typology Map

The following illustrates my use of digital technologies according to White’s (2013) resident-visitor typology. Like others in this cohort, I have made my digital presence relatively small and have purposely made it that way. I recently searched my name on Google – while my Linkedin profile came up, there is another Alison Kendrick with a much larger digital presence that monopolizes the results (and that’s fine with me).

Most of the technologies I’ve categorized as being a resident of are used as part of the MALAT program. While I use those that I’ve listed as personal (Facebook, Instagram) almost daily, I’m only an observer, meaning I have Facebook to see family and friends posts, but I rarely post anything. Similarly with Instagram, I use it to follow bands, professional tennis players and tournaments, and dogs I’ve never met but think are really cute. 

Since I am currently job searching, I have included Indeed and Eluta (job search engines) and Novoresume (a resume builder) under Institutional, as well as Zoom and other video conferencing applications since I use them to conduct most of my interviews. I assume in my next position, these applications would likely remain under Institutional as long as COVID-19 continues to force people to work from home.

References

White, D. (2013, September 13). Just the Mapping [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSK1Iw1XtwQ

Unit 1, Activity 3: Virtual Symposium Critical Academic Reflection

This past week I participated in the 2021 MALAT Virtual Symposium. The symposium is made up of a series of guest speakers, ranging from students, faculty, and professionals, and their experiences with education and technology. A recurring theme in this years’ (and past years) symposium was open and its role in education.

Starting with Amanda Coolidge’s (2021) talk on Open Education, which she described as “being about sharing, collaboration, and breaking down barriers of accessing education and knowledge” (08:01-08:08), I was intrigued to learn that the term “open” was as broad as it is, and includes topics such as open textbooks, open pedagogy, open research, etc., which all culminate under the umbrella term of open practice. I particularly enjoyed the discussion on access and affordability issues and how they can be addressed through open practice. Dave Cormier (2017) furthered the discussion on open in his talk, making the distinction between free and freedom, which I thought was important as it hadn’t occurred to me that free, albeit appealing, may not equal freedom. I also liked how he spoke to the value of both “open as in content and open as in learning” (17:46) because I believe it takes both to be a successful learner. Cormier also used a great metaphor with rhizomes and its implications on open, and learning in general, that will undoubtedly stick with me.

As Coolidge (2021) discussed the work of BCcampus with open education, specifically with open textbooks, I disagreed with her position that the quality of open textbooks “isn’t so much about the course material, its about the way in which you teach it” (22:31). My initial disagreement stemmed from the idea that its possible to have a very charismatic teacher teaching material that isn’t accurate (e.g., teaching students that Germany won World War II). As I watched Elizabeth Childs and Loni Davis’s (2021) talk, I further felt Coolidge’s position was weak due to Child’s comments on how journal articles undergo a rigorous review process before being published. I found myself asking why if journal articles require such scrutiny, why don’t open textbooks? While I recognize there is likely a lengthier explanation about the review process for open textbooks, and Weller (2020) states that “the Open Education Group at Brigham Young University…[has] established an evidence base demonstrating that open textbooks were of high quality and had a positive impact on students” (p. 138-139), I felt that a stronger stance from Coolidge was needed. Despite this disagreement, I’d like to learn more about open textbooks and their review and publishing processes. Weller (2020) states that “…the quality of the physical book is an important aspect for both educators and students. Books are artifacts at which people tend to have an emotional connection” (p. 139), so I’d be curious to learn more on how this is achieved with respect to open textbooks.

While Cindy Harris did not speak specifically about an open topic, her willingness to be open about her life and career journey resonated with me. I hope to connect with her for advice on the instructional design and how to break into the field. As well, the presentations from current MALAT students, from Mark Regan’s work with air traffic controllers and simulator technologies to Sandra Kuiper’s research on Free Learning as an Open Educational Resource Repository, helped shed light on the wide range of research options, which is encouraging as I prepare to choose my exit pathway.

 

References

Childs, E., & Davis, L., (2021, April 14). Critical Reading and Writing at the Graduate Level. [Webinar]. Royal Roads University . http://bit.ly/criticalreadingwritingVS2021

Coolidge, A. (2021, April 12). Open Education: what it is; what it does and its amazing impact! [Webinar]. Royal Roads University . http://bit.ly/CoolidgeVS2021

Cormier, D. (2017, April 18). Intentional messiness of online communities. [Webinar]. Royal Roads University . https://malat-coursesite.royalroads.ca/lrnt521/dave-cormier-virtual-symposium-presentation/

Weller, M. (2020). 25 Years of Ed Tech. Athabasca University Press. https://www.aupress.ca/books/120290-25-years-of-ed-tech/