Thinking Technology

Monthly Archives : January, 2012

Neck Deep in Winter Term 2011

First, the winter break was….. OUTSTANDING! I returned to the classroom recharged and energized. We shall see how long it lasts. Of course I did course prep and development over the break, But there was a fair share of chillin.

 

But now its back to work.

 

CIS-288M, CIS-187I & CIS-225 are the classes I’m teaching. My teaching and office hours schedule isn’t to bad. One of the joys of teaching at this level is flexibility. If my office hours aren’t working out, I can always change them around like I did last term.

 

288M & 187I are two classes that I’ve struggled with. I haven’t found the right content & level of depth. The flow isn’t there. I’m hoping this term I hit the mark with both classes. We shall see. I’m looking forward to 225. I’ve taught this class once before and should be more “fun”. The topic of user support allows for more discussion and interaction. Some role playing etc. Probably a guest speaker which I need to arrange…… (one more thing)

 

Classes I’m taking:  Introduction to Research Methods & Comprehensive Planning & Implementation.

 

Both classes are off to a decent start. Intro to Research is a blended class so it means trips to Seattle once a month.  I don’t mind the trips so much as it a break from the routine. I’m just hoping the class is worth the effort. I’m a big planner and need structure. A lot of the on campus classes are more….. Free form. I have a hard time adjusting to that.

 

The planning class is a standard online class. Very structured. I have to sit down and lay out the details of each assignment so I know what’s do when and what it’ll take to complete the assignments. If I have to conduct interviews for an assignment I have to start scheduling them NOW. People are busy, especially the people that I need to interview.

 

The initial outlook is good. We’ll see how well things are around next week.

 

There is no doubt that the doctoral endeavor is a one that requires commitment and dedication. There is no illusion to the amount of work that needs to be done throughout the process. The days of taking classes, getting grades and being done are behind me. But one of the biggest realizations for me was the amount of reading that I’d have to do! Reading a few chapters for class is the least of my issues.

 

I’m reading research that will pertain to my end dissertation. Lots of research & dissertations. My writing 7000 instructor pointed out that a standard dissertation will have at least 100 sources. To get those 100, you’ll need to 7 times that. My jaw dropped. 1 in 7 of the articles, dissertations and studies I read won’t make the cut. 6 items will be useless. WOW!

 

Realizing how much reading was necessary, I put aside my reading aversion and decided to make it part of the routine. So every day I read for about an hour. I rotate out topics from 5 categories:

 

Technical – Information Technology or Computer Information Systems related, cert study, etc.

Distance Learning – Topics related to distance learning, since this will be the focus of my dissertation

Community College Leadership –  What is going on with community colleges? What do I need to know to be in a leadership position. (My current aspiration)

Academic – This will be chapters for class, course materials etc.

Leisure – All work and no play……

 

So today’s topic: http://sloanconsortium.org/publications/survey/class_differences

 

This report is examines enrollment figures, how organizations see online learning fitting into their future strategy and perceptions on the outcomes face-to-face vs. online. Perceptions of online learning is the foundation for my dissertation so this study should be valuable in that regard.