Constructionism and LEGO's mission

Constructionism and LEGO's mission

A trending image a parent uploaded to Reddit

This image, recently submitted by a parent a few weeks ago, hit the top of of the Reddit feed. It reads:

"To parents

The urge to create is equally strong in all children. Boys and girls. It's imagination that counts. Not skill. You build whatever comes into your head, the way you want it. A bed or a truck. A dolls house or a spaceship. A lot of boys like dolls houses. They're more human than spaceships. A lot of girls prefer spaceships. They're more exciting than dolls houses. The most important thing is to put the right material in their hands and let them create whatever appeals to them." 

LEGO's message that was packed in whatever toy this parent purchased gives a nod to the learning theory of constructionism introduced by Seymour Papert of MIT. 

So what's constructionism, anyway? 

 Seymour Papert

Seymour Papert

Constructionism is heavily influenced on constructivism – the learning theory that says learners actively construct their knowledge based on previous knowledge. Students learn best in project-based settings where they work toward goals that are meaningful to them as students. Constructionism differentiates itself from other theories in that it emphasizes that students learn best when they are making tangible products that they can show and share to the real world.

The connection between this learning theory and LEGO® run deep. Research that Seymour Papert conducted involved the use of legos and was funded by LEGO®. 

This hands-on play and learning is precisely what kids and grownups do when they play with LEGOs. Their finished product can be displayed for others, can be deconstructed and reconstructed into new shapes and new ideas.

LEGO® Serious Play

Neither constructionism theory nor Legos are exclusively valuable for young learners. Lego Serious Play employees constructionism learning theory in professional learning scenarios where business groups work together on scenarios using legos. From the Lego Serious Play website, it says: "The LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology is an innovative process designed to enhance innovation and business performance. Based on research which shows that this kind of hands-on, minds-on learning produces a deeper, more meaningful understanding of the world and its possibilities, the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology deepens the reflection process and supports an effective dialogue – for everyone in the organization. The LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology is an innovative, experimental process designed to enhance innovation and business performance."

LEGO® and constructionism

The close connection between LEGO® and constructionism is perhaps best illustrated in LEGO's mission statement: 

'Inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow’
Our ultimate purpose is to inspire and develop children to think creatively, reason systematically and release their potential to shape their own future - experiencing the endless human possibility.


Photo credit: "Lego City Folk" by Dan Goodwin is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

The ADDIE Model and Online Instruction

The ADDIE Model and Online Instruction

LinkedIn™ Udemy Course

I'm currently knee deep in the process of developing my online Udemy course that will be teaching students how to effectively update, optimize, and polish their LinkedIn profiles. Course development for this project has been fascinating in its own right. Udemy has done an outstanding job providing detailed instruction that sets instructors up for success. Many instructional design principles are built in to how Udemy instructs instructors on how to set up a course (I know – it's a mouthful). Udemy has what appears to be a highly rigorous model of helping instructors build and revise their courses. 

The ADDIE Model

Developed by researchers at Florida State University, the ADDIE Model helps guide instructional designers in the process of design. Curriculum development is broken down into a series of phases that are part of the process of building instruction. These phases are:

  1. Analysis  
  2. Design  
  3. Development 
  4. Implementation 
  5. Evaluation 

Mine and Udemy's Use of the ADDIE Model

Between each phase, developers are encouraged to revise areas with apparent issues to improve the course. I have completed much of the analysis associated with my course. Through that process, I identified several areas where I needed to revise goals and more clearly outline objectives.

Udemy has provided a lot of tools that help in designing and developing the course. Since this online classroom marketplace is a well-thought-out platform, a lot of the design of course tools and layout has been addressed by Udemy. As I complete the development and implementation of my of my course, the guiding principles of the ADDIE Model will become increasingly important. This model places emphasis on the evaluation phase of a course. An instructor needs to observe what areas of the course students seem to be benefiting from and which areas need improvement. I plan to interject a few quizzes and open discussion threads throughout the course where I ask students what they are enjoying and what I can do to improve the course. I'll also look for areas where students are repeatedly asking questions; multiple related questions are a good sign that clarification on material would improve the course experience for students. 

As an instructor in an online setting where students can publicly rate your performance, where a portion of students' "tuition" goes toward compensating instructors, taking full advantage of feedback provided to the instructor from students is a crucial. Guiding principles from the evaluation phase of the ADDIE Model will be of high focus for me following the launch of my course. 


Photo credit: "LinkedIn Chocolates" by nan palmero is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

An interview with Ryan Brierley

An interview with Ryan Brierley

Instructional design in healthcare

Ryan Brierley is a digital media specialist with more than a decade of experience in instructional design. He currently works for Intermountain Healthcare, the largest healthcare provider in the Intermountain West. I sat down with Ryan to ask him about what it means to be an instructional designer in the healthcare industry. Enjoy.


Photo credit: "bridging knowledge to health" by Paul Bica is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Deborah Fields, virtual worlds, and tween activism

Deborah Fields, virtual worlds, and tween activism

The virtual world of Whyville 

Whyville is an online community for children between the ages of 8-14. This 7-million-member community is a virtual world where kids have the ability to interact with each other with advanced identities and cultural complexities that are found in our physical world. Utah State University's Deborah Fields recently spoke at TEDxUSU on the interesting subject of tween activism that occurred in this virtual setting.

Tween activism in a virtual world

Here's Dr. Field's TEDxUSU speech:

Dr. Deborah Fields

Dr. Deborah Fields is a world-renowned authority in the unique area of tween life in online environments. She co-authored the book Connected Play: Tweens in a Virtual World.

Mindcraft in the classroom

Mindcraft in the classroom

Video games and learning

I stumbled across this video of David Lee unboxing Minecraft in the Classroom: Ideas, inspiration, and student projects for teachers. David mentioned that the book helps teach subjects including math, science, languages, and other subjects using Minecraft as a focal point. I've been aware that instructional technologist have used Minecraft in after-school makerspaces with great success for some time. PhD candidate Ty Hollett with Vanderbilt University has invested much of his research focus in this field and has seen a lot of success with his work. The introduction of this book by Pearson Education indicates that there may be expanding opportunities for students to participate in Minecraft learning opportunities within the course of a regular school day in a classroom setting.

The unboxing

Here's a look at the book. Thanks for the video, David.


Photo credit: "Minecraft Castle" by Mike Cooke is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

A millionaire athlete, YouTube, and a farm in North Carolina

A millionaire athlete, YouTube, and a farm in North Carolina

Quitting a million-dollar day job

There's a very highly paid professional who recently quit his $7.4 million-per-year day job. What's more, he quit his job to take up farming. Meet former NFL Center Jason Brown. Here's Jason's inspiring story of why he chose to make this major career change:

How did he learn his new skills?

You'll notice in the video that Jason said he has used YouTube as a resource of learning his news skills. Videos like this helped him build his basic knowledge in the area of farming: 

When I think about a life of greatness, I think about a life of service.
— Jason Brown

In addition to his elective online learning, Jason looks like he's done a lot of learn-by-doing by making investment in equipment, land, and delivering his first harvest of 100,000 pounds of sweet potatoes. Jason also said he received advice from other farmers in his surrounding community. 

Based on my observations from the video, it looks like Jason is well on his way to becoming highly skilled in his new career. 

PhotoMath as a tool for learning

PhotoMath as a tool for learning

PhotoMath and scaffolding

PhotoMath has developed an outstanding application to help students find solutions to math problems. Although some individuals and groups have expressed concerns that students will use this app to cheat on tests (some inevitably will), there is a lot of potential utility in the use of this application as a form of scaffolding in math instruction and learning. Benefiting from this utility, of course, would take some discipline on the part of the student. A student would attempt to solve a math problem from beginning to end. She could then use PhotoMath to check her work and correct errors after making an honest, unassisted effort to solve each problem. In the event that the student becomes stumped on a problem after such an effort, she could then employee PhotoMath to find the correct solution, view the sequential steps required to solve the problem, and identify the specific area where she encountered difficult.

Here's how the app works

Mixed reviews

As you can see below, some users naturally enjoyed using PhotoMath more than others. One common complaint I found associated with the application was the lack of detailed explanations associated with the set of problem-solving steps PhotoMath provides for each problem. Others found that it provided adequate support in aiding learning. 

Download PhotoMath

You can download PhotoMath for free for your apple device, here. The folks at PhotoMath are also currently working on developing an app with the same functionality for your Android device due to launch in the spring of 2015. To enter your name on their mailing list to be notified when the Android PhotoMath app is launched, click here


A review of five major online course providers

A review of five major online course providers

The New York Times predicted that 2012 would be the year of the MOOCs. From 2012 until present, these MOOCs (massive open online courses) have popped up all over covering nearly any subject one might want to learn about. MOOCs, by definition, are open. I.e., anyone can join them without going through an admissions process. They are also free. Other online platforms have developed which charge students course fees in exchange to access to courses. Here's a review of five of the most popular platforms where these courses can be found:

Coursera

 https://www.coursera.org/

https://www.coursera.org/

Coursera is home to 800+ courses with a student population of 10,000,000+ Coursera has teamed up with many traditional and internationally respected universities to provide online courses on many subjects, most of which one could expect to encounter on a college campus. Coursera's U.S. universities include many Ivy League universities including Columbia, Brown, Princeton, and Yale. Major research universities including University of Washington, Johns Hopkins University, and University of Minnesota are home to instructors who are also contributing members. The best part about Coursera's courses is that they are free!

Craftsy

 http://www.craftsy.com/

http://www.craftsy.com/

Craftsy's focus is centered around crafting as is evident in its name. Learners pay a small fee. Learners who pay the fee for the class have access to its materials for life. Subject areas that are covered on Craftsy include quilting, photography, gardening, home remodeling, and many other areas. Craftsy's video interface is very engaging. Students can make comments during instructional videos which are attached to the specific place in the video when the comment was made. Others are able to see these comments and instructors' responses which makes for a dynamic learning environment. 

Udemy

 https://www.udemy.com/

https://www.udemy.com/

Udemy claims to have four million students and 20,000+ courses. It has taken the approach of providing a rewarding profit sharing structure with its instructors. This structure acts as an incentive for instructors to curate high-quality content and to market their courses to potential students. Students naturally also benefit from courses that Udemy's instructors have put a lot of time and effort into. Many of Udemy's courses are free, and fee-required courses are typically between $5 and $100 per course.

edX

 https://www.edx.org/

https://www.edx.org/

edX focuses on providing high-quality education provided by instructors from some of the world's top universities including Harvard, MIT, and U.C. Berkeley. Courses are structured similar to university courses by university professors. Students can earn certificates for many of the courses they complete. edX courses are free. 

Khan Academy

 https://www.khanacademy.org/

https://www.khanacademy.org/

The Khan Academy provides thousands of free instructional videos on specific skills and techniques that learners are developing. The Khan Academy hosts its videos on YouTube. Its YouTube channel is home to 1.9 million subscribers and more than 475 million YouTube video views. If you're trying to solidify your knowledge on any k-12 school or college subject, chances are, someone has produced an instructional video on it that can be found on the Khan Academy's website. 

If you're looking to polish a skill you've been developing or to learn a new skill or subject, taking an online course on the skill or subject may be an excellent method to reach your goals. 


Photo credit: "academic pursuit in the shadow of the catalpa" by pcgn7 is liscensed under CC BY 2.0.

Do digital natives and digital immigrants exist?

Do digital natives and digital immigrants exist?

Do digital natives and immigrants exist? Researcher Marc Prensky coined these terms as a method of highlighting some generalizations around the generations of tech users including those who grew up before the advent of many of today's technology we use (digital immigrants). Generalizations are also assigned to digital natives who grew up with recent technology who he segments as those born in 1980 or later. 

Much like national immigrants who grew up speaking a foreign language before immigrating to a new nation, digital immigrants are said to use technology with an accent and experience some difficulties expressing themselves to the level of proficiency of younger generations who were born with technology surrounding them. 

These descriptors are loosely helpful from the perspective of a instructional designer in that it's important to consider the general technical aptitude of one's audience when deciding best methods of sharing instruction. As with all generalizations, there are exceptions to stereotypes, and in the case of the generalizations surrounding digital natives and digital immigrants, the exceptions are plentiful. 

Technology is vast. It's expansiveness makes it impossible for any one person to "know technology". There are simply too many technology-related subjects in existence that mastering them all, let alone having a general understanding of all-things-technology, is impossible. There isn't really a pure expert in "technology" young or old. An expert networking specialist likely knows little about web development. A video production editing specialist can master linear editing software but may have little conceptual understanding of iOS application development. One's ability to master any area of technology has little to do with her generation and more to do with her unique interests in specific areas of interest. Those who are interested in app development will likely engage in activities and studies that will expand their knowledge in that area. Because interests are individual and don't always correlate with age, our audience of technology literate users, generally speaking, is diverse.

Differences in the technological skills and abilities of technology users in their 20's, 30's, 40's, and 50's, I don't believe, has a huge amount of variation if interests are aligned. I believe a lot of the generalizations Prensky assigns to digital immigrants become more evident in many users in their 60's, 70's, and beyond, although there are still myriad exceptions. 

I love this PBS Idea Channel spot on the subject:

So, do digital natives and immigrants exist? My answer is yes, in general terms, they do, but in specific terms, they don't. From the perspective of a designer, it's important to consider the unique set of technology skills and aptitudes your users will have when designing material. 

What some airlines can teach us about boring content

What some airlines can teach us about boring content

What to do about boring content you need to share

What do you do if you have to teach boring content? What if your audience likely understands your message, at least partially, but you are still required to deliver a refresher? Many instructional designers might approach this unfortunate but common request by covering the necessary points to get the job done with the understanding that most people will likely ignore the familiar message. 

Airlines face this problem with the required safety instruction airline passengers must receive before each flight. Designers have addressed the need to deliver instructional videos, initially, with content that was informative, albeit boring.

Delta's instructional designers changed this pattern through videos that were just as informative but that included humor. This approach, if done right, seems to catch the attention of many more passengers than the plain vanilla approach of the past. Each time I find myself on a Delta flight, I hear passengers chuckle at the flight safety video and notice plenty of passengers paying attention to the video. Additionally, Delta releases new versions of their safety videos frequently, so passengers know that they may likely see a new version when they're on a Delta flight. The combination of funny and updated content seems to be working for Delta. It is important to note that humor is very, very challenging to produce in such a way that it will appeal to a wide audience. If it doesn't come off as funny, chances are your viewers think it's cheesy. 

Funny in-flight safety videos

Here's the most recent version Delta has produced:

This flight safety video by Air New Zealand was released less than a week ago and is coming close to seeing 10 million views!

So, what are the take-aways?

If you have boring content that you are required to deliver:

  1. Make it funny
  2. Keep it current

Photo credit: Bentley Smith, Creative Commons Non-Commercial

A student's view of the future classroom

A student's view of the future classroom

The White House Student Film Festival asks students to produce videos addressing topics on education and technology. A committee selected 16 finalists from among 2,500 submissions whose videos were screened at the White House earlier this year. This video was one of three official selections under the category "World of Tomorrow."  It's a fun concept of what learning might look in the near future. 

Google Drive for Education

Google Drive for Education

Many college-aged students have likely experienced the panic of losing a USB flash drive or misplacing files they thought they saved on their computer. In addition to the negative setbacks associated with losing work, some students are faced with the relatively expensive costs associated data. 

Google made some big strides in lowering this cost of data storage and helping students secure their files when it recently announced Drive for Education -- what Google defines as, "an infinitely large, ultra-secure and entirely free bookbag for the 21st century." Google is allowing for what is says is unlimited storage space for all college students who use Google Drive. Google even allows for monster-sized files of up to 5TB to be stored on Drive for Education. (Who owns a single file in the TB range?!) A 5 TB hard drive from Amazon will cost you more than $200 and Google is providing a storage space of this size and more for free. 

The Drive for Education isn't the only thing Google is doing well in the education space. I know fellow students in the graduate school setting consistently default to use Google Docs for collaborative document work. 

I anticipate that Google will continue to produce high-quality tools that learners will use as a part of its Google Drive for Education platform. 


Photo credit: "Student Feet" by Theen Moy is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Instructor using QR codes

I was surfing Reddit earlier this week and ran across this post in the /r/MildlyInteresting subreddit. As you can see, this child's teacher provided a QR code which will link her to online help in a quick, easily accessible way. What's better, most QR Code generators provide the submitter of a URL with backend data on how many times the code was scanned, what type of devices made the scans, etc. 

The effect of exercise on learning

  Cathedral of Learning, Commons Room, University of Pittsburg. Photo by  Brian Donovan . ( CC BY-SA 2.0 )

Cathedral of Learning, Commons Room, University of Pittsburg. Photo by Brian Donovan. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Scientist have know for some time that exercise can affect one's brain in positive ways. Trends in Neuroscience reports that "exercise increases synaptic plasticity by directly affecting synaptic structure and potentiating synaptic strength, and by strengthening the underlying systems that support plasticity including neurogenesis, metabolism and vascular function."

A study released today by Pediatrics, a medical journal, documents cases of ADHD children improving their attention span as a result of exercising. Here's the study. This article in The Atlantic has an excellent electrophysiological graph of brains with and without exercise. 

The New York Times reported on several findings that highlight the benefit of exercising in enhancing information recall from our memory. 

What does all this mean for instructional technologists? It's certainly beneficial to keep in mind the positive effects of exercise on learners' abilities. Suggestive breaks and exercise recommendations might be warranted in materials that are lengthy and challenging. 

2020 workforce skill-set and human performance improvement

 The Institute of the Future "Future Work Skills 2020 Report."

The Institute of the Future "Future Work Skills 2020 Report."

In the next five years, employees will need to visibly provide value above and beyond the investment their employers are making in their compensation packages. This push for value-focused employment will drive instructional designers to address and promote the development of skills the marketplace rewards. 

One of the first equations a business student learns is ROI – i.e., return on investment. ROI allows us to see what amount of value that we invest in an asset is returned to us. In cases where we gain more than we invest, our investment is perceived to be successful.  Globalization will continue to be a growing source of competitive forces that shape the workforce. This competition requires companies to carefully consider the return on investment it receives from various individuals within its workforce.

ROI is calculated with the following equation:

((Gain – investment)/investment)

From an employer’s perspective, the investment in an employee -- her compensation package -- is relatively fixed. Given this fact, return on investment can be enhanced primarily by increasing the gain the company receives as a result of an employee’s efforts.

The Institute of the Future (IFTF) released a list of projected skills that the workforce of 2020 will need. These skills will help employees provide value and justify their existence within a company structure. The skills include:

  1. Sense-making ability to determine the deeper meaning or significance of what is being expressed
  2. Social intelligence - ability to connect to others in a deep and direct way, to sense and stimulate reactions and desired interactions
  3. Novel & adaptive thinking proficiency at thinking and coming up with solutions and responses beyond that which is rote or rule-based
  4. Cross-cultural competencyability to operate in different cultural settings
  5. Computational thinking ability to translate vast amounts of data into abstract concepts and to understand data-based reasoning
  6. New-media literacyability to critically assess and develop content that uses new media forms, and to leverage these media for persuasive communication
  7. Transdisciplinarityliteracy in and ability to understand concepts across multiple disciplines 
  8. Design mindsetability to represent and develop asks and work processes for desired outcomes
  9. Cognitive load management - ability to discriminate and filter information for importance, and to understand how to maximize cognitive functioning using a variety of tools and techniques
  10. Virtual collaborationability to work productively, drive engagement, and demonstrate presence as a member of a virtual team.

An effective instructional designer and leader can create curriculum to influence human performance in nearly all these areas to some degree. (Granted, these skills make take years to develop, but progress can be made over the course of thoughtful instruction and learning experiences.) Assuming IFTF is correct in its projections in that these skills will be valued in the future market, then enhancing employees’ abilities and efficiencies in these set of skills is a way to add instant value to organizations with which effective instructional designers are employed.

Benjamin Disraeli said, “There can be economy only where there is efficiency.” As designers structure their materials to enhance efficiencies in this future skill-set, value will be created in the economy, employers will benefit from better returns on investment, and employees will enjoyed added job security. 

Schema Theory and learning

 "Thanksgiving grace 1942" by Marjory Collins, photographer for Farm Security Administration. - Photo by Marjory Collins. Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection (Library of Congress). Licensed under Public domain via  Wikimedia Commons .

"Thanksgiving grace 1942" by Marjory Collins, photographer for Farm Security Administration. - Photo by Marjory Collins. Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection (Library of Congress). Licensed under Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

The basis of Schema Theory maps knowledge in related clusters called schema. Cognitive scientists and psychologist sometimes use this terminology in an attempt to map the way we classify knowledge into groups. For example, each person likely has a general cluster of knowledge around the schema of a car. We know it has certain parts like wheels, an engine, seats, and we know that certain parts tend to be located in certain areas. E.g., wheels are located at the base of the car. 

Our schemata are influenced by our culture. Most Americans have a Thanksgiving Schema, for example. We have basic knowledge of what Thanksgiving entails and can understand conversations where Thanksgiving is referenced. One need not go into detail about dinner food when speaking with an American about the Thanksgiving Day parade. This is because most people have a basic knowledge or schema on what Thanksgiving means. Referencing "Thanksgiving" only serves to add context to a conversation in this example. 

When we are creating learning materials designed to advanced learners' understanding of a subject. It's important to use examples that draw from familiar schema learners are likely to be familiar with. If examples are relatable and familiar, learners are less likely to get hung up on unimportant details and potentially more likely to learn on deeper levels as they relate new information with old knowledge.  

The Information Processing Model and learning

 The Information Processing Model. Designed by AwesomeNikk - Own work. Licensed under  Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

The Information Processing Model. Designed by AwesomeNikk - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Anyone who designs instructional materials will benefit from understanding basic principles of how the human mind learns. The Information Processing Model attempts to map out steps of learning while identifying whether said learning is taking place in a human's short-term, long-term memory, or in a place called our sensory register. 

The human mind has three variations of memory.

  1. The sensory memory can store images, sounds, and other environmental stimulation for anywhere between 0.5 to 2 seconds. 
  2. The short-term memory is where are current thoughts occur. This "working-memory" processes information and can focus on only a handful of thoughts at any given time. 
  3. The long-term memory has huge capacity. Our knowledge is stored in our long-term memory and can later be retrieved and used by our working memory.
 Oatmeal cookies. By slgckgc (originally posted to Flickr as In The Cookie Jar)  CC-BY-2.0  

Oatmeal cookies. By slgckgc (originally posted to Flickr as In The Cookie Jar) CC-BY-2.0 

So how does someone learn about something she has never considered before, and how does this model illustrate how learning occurs? Let's say you do not know how to bake oatmeal cookies, but you are attempting to learn how by reading a cook book recipe on oatmeal cookies. The Information Processing Model shows us that as you glance at the text of the recipe, your eyes read the words and this image is recorded for about 1/2 second in your sensory register. Your brain than attempts to make sense of the words using perception as this information enters your short-term memory where thought occurs. As you read through the recipe, your short-term memory is engaged as you concentrate on identifying key components and steps in your cookie baking. At this point, you are actively drawing from your long-term memory as you read items that have previous meaning like "butter," "salt," "pre-heat," etc. You follow the recipe, bake the cookies, enjoy them, and reflect on your experience. As you reflect, items you felt were notable are stored in your long-term memory for future oatmeal-cookie-baking sessions.

This example is not perfect, simplified, and doesn't fully give justice to this fascinating model of learning.  If you are interested in learning more about the Information Processing Model, I've found this Wikipedia article helpful on the subject and chapter 3 of Michael E. Martin's textbook, Learning and Cognition: The Design of the Mind.

Flipping classrooms in learning settings

Flipping classrooms in learning settings

There's a good chance you have heard about the instruction technique of flipping the classroom. The Salt Lake Tribune's Education Reporter Lisa Schencker published this article on one Utah middle school math teacher who flipped her classroom and saw improvements in her students' learning. 

In traditional classroom instruction, an instructor will teach students material; students will then be given homework where they can practice what they learned in class. I find a lot of problems tend to arise with the approach to teaching, especially in skill-based subjects like math, computer programing, and software tool courses. Students get home, begin working on their homework, get stumped on problems that an instructor could help them with and get frustrated. 

When a skill-based course is flipped, students learn at their own pace at home through books, instructional videos along with other tools, and then they get to practice their knowledge in a classroom setting where help is just a hand-raise away. This flipping-the-classroom approach also tends to allow instructors to get more meaningful one-on-one time with each student. 


Photo credit: "classroom" by Esparta Palma is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Huntsman School's Road Map to Graduation

Huntsman School's Road Map to Graduation

I recently completed a rewarding, challenging project with a great group of people at the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business.

Academic Advisor Paige Geslin wanted to develop an advising solution to help students navigate through the sometimes complicated world of college as a business student. With registering for classes, internships, extracurricular activities, and finding a job after graduation, students need guidance to stay on track and graduate on time. 

Paige worked with the talented Brent Meacham, Laura Luke, and Klydi Heywood to develop the Huntsman School Road Map to Graduation package which included a series of videos and guiding document. 

The final project is delivered here on the Huntsman School's undergraduate advising page.

Graphic Designer Hilary Frisby put together the guiding document. Here it is (looks great, right?).

Below are the series of videos we produced. The aforementioned Huntsman School team did all the leg work to storyboard, script, cast talent, schedule shooting days and locations, provide editing feedback and critiques, and after a few revisions, we developed these beautiful pieces.

Thanks to the Huntsman School team. This was a fun project to work on.

Introduction

You and Your Advisor

First Year

Second Year

Third Year

Fourth Year

Graduation and Beyond


National Geographic's Human Footprint Interactive

National Geographic did a bang-up job on the recent creation of an interactive learner interface where users can see what type of lifetime impact some of their consumptions have on their health and the environment. 

The tool has different interfaces built for common good we consume including eggs, gas (shown above), potatoes, and newspapers. Once a user enters her daily or weekly consumption of an item, stats appear in animated prowess with the user's lifetime average compared to the lifetime average of a U.S. resident and residents from other countries. Give the free tool a try by clicking/tapping here