BIG shifts 7-A-1

It was hard to choose one of the big shifts. I think we have all “shifted” how we teach in small and big ways. The one I chose to write about was #3: the social/collaborative construction of meaningful knowledge.

I think big shift #3 has changed my teaching practice significantly. I looked backed to when I started teaching in 2001 and I think I thought the learning process as a lecture from the active instructor to the passive student. It was definitely a one-way street where students could, at most, ask “good” questions. Nowadays, I have incorporated discussion, group work, and am taking this class to take collaboration to the next level. I think student-student, student-faculty-student, and faculty-faculty interaction will become more and more important parts of my course. I envision a more fluid social construction of knowledge within each class.

I must say that I am not there yet but I think I am making small changes that will lead me to be more open to more collaboration and to explore ways and tools in which this can be done. I think this course has already improved the tools and has opened up my mind to forms of sharing that it was more uncomfortable for me before like wikis.

I think that the technology that is available (many of which we covered in this course) will allow for us to optimize collaboration in a way that enhances the teaching experience for us faculty and the learning experience of students. I think wikis, blogs, microblogs, social media, etc, will become more and more part of the life of teachers and this technology will eventually become the norm in classrooms across the country and the world. Andre

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