Our current system of higher education dates to the period from 1865 to 1925. It was in those decades that the nation's new universities created grades and departments, majors and minors, all in an attempt to prepare young people for a world transformed by the telegraph and the Model T. As Cathy N. Davidson argues in The New Education, this approach to education is wholly unsuited to the era of the gig economy. From the Ivy League to community colleges, she introduces us to innovators who are remaking college for our own time by emphasizing student-centered learning that values creativity in the face of change above all. The New Education ultimately shows how we can teach students not only to survive but to thrive amid the challenges to come.
During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, one of the most important tools of a reader or writer was a commonplace book (CPB). Peter Beal, leading expert on English manuscript studies, defines a commonplace book as “a manuscript book in which quotations or passages from reading matter, precepts, proverbs and aphorisms, useful rhetorical figures or exemplary phrasing, words and ideas, or other notes and memoranda are entered for ready reference under general subject headings.” Your sources can include, first and foremost, the assigned readings and supplementary materials, as well as any other useful texts you come across. I encourage you to supplement CPB entries with extra-curricular material: quotations from readings for other classes, lyrics from songs, lines from movies, tweets with relevant hashtags, an occasional quotation from a classmate during discussion, etc. These extra-curricular commonplace passages, however, are in addition to and not in place of the required passages as described below.
I’d be curious to see those who are using Hypothes.is as a social annotation tool in coursework utilize this outline (or similar ones) in combination with their annotation practices.
Curating one’s annotations and placing them into a commonplace book or zettelkasten would be a fantastic rhetorical exercise to extend the value of one’s notes and ideas.
It’s also sort of founding example for the idea of social annotation given that most prior annotation was for personal use. (Though Owen Gingerich has shown that early annotations were copied from book to book and early scribes added annotations to texts for readers as well.)
It also demonstrates the idea of proof of work (in this case love “work”), which is part of the reason that social annotation in an educational setting using tools like Hypothes.is is worthwhile. Students are indicating (via social signaling) to a teacher that they’ve read and actively engaged with the course material.
Of course, unlike the example, they’re not necessarily showing “true love” of the material!
Efforts to move higher education instruction online en masse highlight the necessity of affective labor—work that a person does to suppress their feelings so as to create a desired feeling in others (in this case, a sense of calm)—as well as the toll it can take.
Apr 21, 4:45 AM 30 min
Speakers:Lee Skallerup Bessette and Susannah McGowan
Openness can be fraught for faculty; the classroom has often been a sanctuary of academic freedom and teaching approaches are personal in the strongest sense. In preparing our faculty for the Fall 2020 semester, we, as faculty developers and academic technologists at CNDLS at Georgetown University, were working with faculty who were openly discussing their pedagogy and the limits of their knowledge of digital tools and learning strategies.
The work moved us past knowing “what works” or “what’s possible” (Hutchings, 2000) in using tools into the realm of affective labor (Horthchild, 2012), where we managed a complex interplay of support, emotions, and uncertainty in order to evoke the proper emotions from faculty. To make our expertise on pedagogy and digital tools “stick” (Ahmed, 2010) we worked within our own emotions while fielding the emotions of faculty. But this work, while taxing, has borne fruit: more faculty are embracing open pedagogical practices such as Domains, ungrading (Blum & Kohn, 2020), and flipping the classroom (Talbert, 2017). The presentation will work to uncover the affective labor we have been practicing, ways to acknowledge it, and what joys it can bring.
- Ahmed, S. (2010). The Cultural Politics of Emotion. Routledge.
- Blum, S. D., & Kohn, A. (2020). Ungrading: Why Rating Students Undermines Learning (And What to Do Instead). West Virginia University Press.
- Hochschild, A.R. (2012). The Managed Heart: Commercialization of Human Feeling (3rd ed.). University of California Press.
- Hutchings, P. 2000. Approaching the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. In Opening Lines: Approaches to the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, edited by P. Hutchings, 1–10.
- Talbert, R. (2017). Flipped learning: A guide for higher education faculty. Stylus Publishing, LLC.
The Theories of Instruction course is for graduate students who are interested in the study of the emergence and the present status of instructional theories. The overall goal of this particular course is to equip course participants with the knowledge of instructional theories comparing and discussing the relationships among learning theories, and their practical applications. The development of the knowledge on instructional theories will be fostered by a) learning by design activities, and b) opportunities to critique and evaluate applications of the theories.
ᔥ “While looking for info about his book, I came across some open courses from a Turkish distance uni by @evrimb, wonderfully organized slides. She actually has two entire courses – one on theories of instruction, another on ed psych. https://t.co/h92k0Z1fKm https://t.co/09Nz6QUlA7 https://t.co/Yp7V8m5Hlh” / Twitter ()in
Talking out loud to oneself is a technology for thinking that allows us to clarify and sharpen our approach to a problem
I ran across this article this evening and some of the ideas resonate strongly with me. The article mentions some areas of psychology research and a few papers I hadn’t seen before.
I’m also particularly interested in the idea of embodied cognition within cognitive psychology. Has anyone delved into these areas in their research or memory-related work? @LynneKelly’s research and written texts encourage singing, dancing and performing (I don’t recall specifically speaking or walking in her contexts, but I’m sure they’re all closely related), but has anyone else experimented with these additional modalities in their practice?
Most of the Western-based mnemotechniques I’m aware of are focused almost solely on internalized speech/thought. Can anyone think of any which aren’t?
I’ve seen several works in which Nassim Nicholas Taleb propounds the benefits of the flaneur lifestyle for improving thought, though his mentions are purely anecdotal as I recall. I’d appreciate any additional references to research in these areas if others are aware.
Like many of us, I talk to myself out loud, though I’m a little unusual in that I often do it in public spaces. Whenever I want to figure out an issue, develop an idea or memorise a text, I turn to this odd work routine. While it’s definitely earned me a reputation in my neighbourhood, it’s also improved my thinking and speaking skills immensely. Speaking out loud is not only a medium of communication, but a technology of thinking: it encourages the formation and processing of thoughts. ❧
I’ve noticed speaking out loud also seems to help me in practicing and acquiring a new language.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 09:52PM
The idea that speaking out loud and thinking are closely related isn’t new. It emerged in Ancient Greece and Rome, in the work of such great orators as Marcus Tullius Cicero. But perhaps the most intriguing modern development of the idea appeared in the essay ‘On the Gradual Formation of Thoughts During Speech’ (1805) by the German writer Heinrich von Kleist. ❧
Some of this is at play with the idea of “[rubber ducking](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubber_duck_debugging)” as a means of debugging programs
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 09:55PM
In both cases – speech and writing – the materiality of language undergoes a transformation (to audible sounds or written signs) which in turn produces a mental shift. ❧
There’s surely a link between this and the idea of thought spaces in the blogosphere or the idea of a commonplace book/digital garden/wiki.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 10:06PM
Mute inner speech can appear as an inner dialogue as well, but its truncated form encourages us to create a ‘secret’ abbreviated language and deploy mental shortcuts. By forcing us to articulate ourselves more fully, self-talk summons up the image of an imagined listener or interrogator more vividly. In this way, it allows us to question ourselves more critically by adopting an external perspective on our ideas, and so to consider shortcomings in our arguments – all while using our own speech. ❧
I’m also reading this and wondering about memory techniques and methods and how these may interact beneficially.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 10:07PM
It’s no coincidence that we walk when we need to think: evidence shows that movement enhances thinking and learning, and both are activated in the same centre of motor control in the brain. In the influential subfield of cognitive science concerned with ‘embodied’ cognition, one prominent claim is that actions themselves are constitutive of cognitive processes. That is, activities such as playing a musical instrument, writing, speaking or dancing don’t start in the brain and then emanate out to the body as actions; rather, they entail the mind and body working in concert as a creative, integrated whole, unfolding and influencing each other in turn. It’s therefore a significant problem that many of us are trapped in work and study environments that don’t allow us to activate these intuitive cognitive muscles, and indeed often even encourage us to avoid them. ❧
I’m curious if Lynne Kelly or others have looked into these areas of research with their Memory work? She’s definitely posited that singing and dancing as well as creating art helps indigenous cultures in their memory work.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 10:10PM
Doomscrolling takes on a whole new meaning when your class is on Instagram.
I'm no English major, but as a writer and consumer of loads of educational (mostly tech) writing, I've come to notice a number of words and phrases that
This book examines a collaborative partnership model between academia and Indigenous peoples, the goal of which is to integrate Indigenous perspectives into the curriculum. It demonstrates how the authentic and creative approaches employed have led to an evolution of curriculum and pedagogy that facilitates cultural competence among Australian graduate and undergraduate students.
The book pursues an interdisciplinary approach based on highly practical examples, exemplars and methods that are currently being used to teach in this area. It focuses on facilitating student acquisition of knowledge, understanding, attitudes and skills, following Charles Sturt University's Cultural Competence Pedagogical Framework. Further, it provides insights into the use of reflective practice in this context, and practical ideas on embedding content and sharing practices, highlighting examples of potential "ways forward," both nationally and globally.
How does one find more of these?
How might one escape a book’s shackled sense of time, extending the authored experience over weeks and months?
The best introduction to many of these methods and their pedagogic uses is best described by Lynne Kelly‘s book Knowledge and Power in Prehistoric Societies: Orality, Memory, and the Transmission of Culture (Cambridge University Press, 2015).
If they take her ideas as a basis and then layer on their own thinking, I think they’ll get much further much quicker. Based on my reading of their work thus far, they’re limiting themselves solely with western and modern cultures or at least those of a post-Peter Ramus world.
As an example, I’ve recently been passively watching the Netflix series The Who Was? Show which is geared toward children, but it does a phenomenal job of creating entertaining visuals, costumes, jokes, songs, dances, over-the-top theatricality, and small mnemonic snippets to teach children about famous people in our culture. Naturally this is geared toward neophytes, but it’s memorable, especially when watched with some spaced repetition. To follow it up properly it needs the next 10 layers of content and information to provide the additional depth to move it from children’s knowledge to adult and more sophisticated knowledge. Naturally this should be done at a level appropriate to the learner and their age and sophistication and include relevant related associative memory techniques, but it’s a start.
I’ll note that our educational system’s inability to connect (or associate) new knowledge with previous knowledge is a major drawback.
Restructuring coursework takes a lot of time and effort. Looking out for part-timers and adjuncts who are already often thrown into the deep end without much support is also key.
Another question we may ask is how can students be better brought into the ideas behind the pedagogy to help themselves as well as their colleagues and potential future versions of a particular course?
Andy Matuschak (@andy_matuschak), joins Erik on this episode. He is a technologist, designer and researcher. They discuss:
- The key thread throughout his work and what he’s trying to accomplish.
- Why people read books despite remembering little of what they read.
- What books should look like and the features they should have in the digital age.
- Why spaced repetition is so powerful.- His requests for startups in the space.