[Humanist] 22.494 new on WWW: TL Infobits for January

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Sat Jan 31 10:23:52 CET 2009

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 22, No. 494.
         Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Fri, 30 Jan 2009 16:54:00 +0000
        From: Carolyn Kotlas <kotlas at email.unc.edu>
        Subject: TL Infobits -- January 2009

TL INFOBITS     January 2009            No. 31          ISSN: 1931-3144


INFOBITS is an electronic service of The University of North Carolina
at Chapel Hill ITS Teaching and Learning division. Each month the
ITS-TL's Information Resources Consultant monitors and selects from a
number of information and instructional technology sources that come to
her attention and provides brief notes for electronic dissemination to

NOTE: You can read the Web version of this issue at

You can read all back issues of Infobits at


2009 Horizon Report on Emerging Technologies
Learning with Customized Networks
Teaching and Learning Challenges for the Coming Year
Principles for Excellence in Online Teaching
Teaching in Virtual Environments
Recommended Reading
Infobits Subscribers -- Where Were We in 2008?



The 2009 Horizon Report is a collaboration between the New Media
Consortium (NMC) and the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI). Each year
the report "describes six areas of emerging technology that will have
significant impact on higher education within three adoption horizons
over the next one to five years." Some of the technologies to watch
this year include:

Cloud Computing: "Cloud computing . . . has emerged as the unifying
technology supporting grassroots video, collaboration webs, and social
operating systems . .. has the potential to change the way we think
about computing . . ."

The Personal Web: "Armed with tools for tagging, aggregating, updating,
and keeping track of content, today's learners create and navigate a
web that is increasingly tailored to their own needs and interests:
this is the personal web."

Semantic-Aware Applications: "Tools that can simply gather the context
in which information is couched, and that use that context to extract
imbedded meaning are providing rich new ways of finding and aggregating

Critical challenges identified in the report include:

"There is a growing need for formal instruction in key new skills,
including information literacy, visual literacy, and technological

"Schools are still using materials developed decades ago, but today's
students come to school with very difference experiences than those of
20 or 30 years ago, and think and work very differently as well."

"A challenge cited as critical now for several years running, academic
review and faculty rewards are out of sync with the practice of

"Higher education is facing a growing expectation to make use of and to
deliver services, content, and media to mobile devices."

The 32-page 2009 Horizon Report is available at no charge and has been
released with a Creative Commons license to facilitate its widespread
use, easy duplication, and broad distribution. It can be accessed at
http://www.nmc.org/pdf/2009-Horizon-Report.pdf or

NMC is an "international 501(c)3 not-for-profit consortium of nearly
200 leading colleges, universities, museums, corporations, and other
learning-focused organizations dedicated to the exploration and use of
new media and new technologies." For more information, go to

ELI is a "strategic initiative of EDUCAUSE. While EDUCAUSE serves those
interested in advancing higher education through technology, ELI
specifically explores innovative technologies and practices that
advance learning." For more information, go to



"The idea that digital environments should be customized to suit the
user is now the expected norm of the digital world. Users instantly
expect to have their own view of whatever the context is fully
represented and sustained. Indeed, having to plough through irrelevant
and unnecessary information not only discourages the user from the
environment but immediately disassociates the user from the
environment, which results in a decision to not return. Therefore
customization means relevancy for the user. Taking this idea and
transferring the implications to a learning environment, educators
should be challenged with the same reality."

In "Communities of Learners Redefined: Customized Networks That Impact
Learning" (T.H.E. JOURNAL, January 2009), Ruth Reynard writes that by
tailoring the learning experience to the student, educators could
expect to see "a higher level of learning from the learner." She argues
that, rather than viewing students' social networking activities
disrupting the learning environment, instructors should harness these
tools to help students "develop skills of negotiation, debate (an
almost forgotten academic skill), critical inquiry, and cognitive
positioning--all of which are essential in becoming successful lifelong
learners as well as developing expertise in their discipline."

The article is available online at

T.H.E. (Technology Horizons in Education) Journal [ISSN 0192-592X] is a
monthly magazine that is "dedicated to informing and educating K-12
senior-level district and school administrators, technologists, and
tech-savvy educators within districts, schools, and classrooms to
improve and advance the learning process through the use of technology.
Launched in 1972, T.H.E. Journal was the first magazine to cover
education technology." For more information, contact: T.H.E. Journal,
16261 Laguna Canyon Road, Suite 130, Irvine, CA 92618 USA; tel:
949-265-1520; fax: 949-265-1528; Web: http://www.thejournal.com/



The EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) sponsored "Challenges 2009" -- a
discussion in the teaching and learning community that began with
brainstorming at the 2008 EDUCAUSE annual meeting and continued online.
The goal was to formulate and rank by popularity a list of the top
teaching and learning challenges of 2009. The resulting top five are:

        1. Creating learning environments that promote active
        learning, critical thinking, collaborative learning, and
        knowledge creation.

        2. Developing 21st-century literacies among students and
        faculty (information, digital, and visual).

        3. Reaching and engaging today's learner.

        4. Encouraging faculty adoption and innovation in teaching and
        learning with IT.

        5. Advancing innovation in teaching and learning (with
        technology) in an era of budget cuts.

For more details, visit the Challenges 2009 wiki at

ELI is a "strategic initiative of EDUCAUSE. While EDUCAUSE serves those
interested in advancing higher education through technology, ELI
specifically explores innovative technologies and practices that
advance learning." For more information, go to



For teaching online "[i]t is not sufficient to be a content expert. Nor
is it sufficient to be 'tech-savvy.' It is not even sufficient to be an
excellent traditional classroom teacher. Because the online world is a
categorically different environment[,] a particular blend of skills and
knowledge is necessary if success is to be found in this domain."

Authors Jim Henry and Jeff Meadows, University of Lethbridge, Alberta,
Canada, draw upon their own online teaching experience and that of
others in the field to compile a list of principles to guide new online
instructors and course developers. Some of their principles include:

        Technology is a vehicle, not a destination.

        Great online courses are defined by teaching, not technology.

        A great web interface will not save a poor course; but a poor
        web interface will destroy a potentially great course.

        Excellence comes from ongoing assessment and refinement.

The paper, "Absolutely Riveting Online Course: Nine Principles for
Excellence in Web-Based Teaching" (CANADIAN JOURNAL OF LEARNING AND
TECHNOLOGY, vol. 34, no. 1, Winter 2008), is available at

The Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology [ISSN: 1499-6685],
published by the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education, is a
peer-reviewed journal that welcomes papers on all aspects of
educational technology and learning. For more information, contact
CNIE/RCIE, 260 Dalhousie Street, Suite 204, Ottawa, Ontario Canada K1N
7E4; email: cjlt at ucalgary.ca; Web: http://www.cjlt.ca/



"In the past two years, over 300 colleges and universities have claimed
virtual land in Second Life and in other virtual environments in an
attempt to enhance content delivery, raise institutional profiles, and
explore new frontiers in education." The latest issue of INNOVATE (vol.
5, no. 2, December 2008/January 2009) explores how virtual environments
provide opportunities and challenges for educators and their
institutions. Papers include:

"Hacking Say and Reviving ELIZA: Lessons from Virtual Environments"
By Rochelle Mazar and Jason Nolan

"Using Second Life with Learning-Disabled Students in Higher Education"
By Stephanie McKinney, et al.

"Knowledge-Driven Design of Virtual Patient Simulations"
By Victor Vergara, et al.

The entire issue is available at http://innovateonline.info/
Registration is required to access the complete articles; registration
is free.

Innovate: Journal of Online Education [ISSN 1552-3233], an open-access,
peer-reviewed online journal, is published bimonthly by the Fischler
School of Education and Human Services at Nova Southeastern University.
The journal focuses on the creative use of information technology (IT)
to enhance educational processes in academic, commercial, and
governmental settings. For more information, contact James L. Morrison,
Editor-in-Chief; email: innovate at nova.edu; Web:



"Recommended Reading" lists items that have been recommended to me or
that Infobits readers have found particularly interesting and/or
useful, including books, articles, and websites published by Infobits
subscribers. Send your recommendations to carolyn_kotlas at unc.edu for
possible inclusion in this column.

By Lawrence Lessig
New York: Penguin Group, 2008
ISBN 9781594201721

"For more than a decade, we've been waging a war on our kids in the
name of the 20th Century's model of 'copyright law.' In this, the last
of his books about copyright, Lawrence Lessig maps both a way back to
the 19th century, and to the promise of the 21st. Our past teaches us
about the value in 'remix.' We need to relearn the lesson. The present
teaches us about the potential in a new 'hybrid economy' -- one where
commercial entities leverage value from sharing economies. That future
will benefit both commerce and community. If the lawyers could get out
of the way, it could be a future we could celebrate."

An interview podcast with Lessig discussing his new book is available
from the journal FIRST MONDAY at

A transcript of the podcast is also available at



Each January issue of Infobits includes an annual subscriber tally
listing the countries represented by our subscribers. At the end of
January 2009, there were 7,577 subscribers (an increase of 44
subscribers since last year's count). Here are some brief statistics
about our current subscribers.

The majority of the subscribers we could identify by country are in the
United States (3,581) and other English-speaking countries: Canada
(441), Australia (279), and the United Kingdom (167).

Each of the following countries has between ten and forty-five
subscribers: Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland,
Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand,
Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, and Sweden.

Each of the following countries has fewer than 10 subscribers:
Bolivia, Argentina, Austria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam,
Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark,
Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, Greece,
Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, International, Kuwait, Macedonia,
Mauritius, Micronesia, Mongolia, Morocco, Namibia, Niger, Norway,
Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia,
Slovenia, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad and
Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Venezuela, and

In addition to subscribers whom we can positively identify by a
geographic location, the following sites don't have a geographic
designation: 1,746 subscribers from commercial (.com) sites, 194
subscribers from .org sites, and 633 subscribers from .net sites.

Many thanks to all the subscribers for your support in 2008!

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