Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Reflection on first digital learning workshop

DIL: Notes on First Workshop – 14 May 08

I wasn’t at all sure what to expect coming into the project and was impressed with people’s planned goals. Many of the members are very creative digitally and I had no idea of the wealth of software that is there for the using. I was among those who laid claim to being the most digitally illiterate.

We saw a video from YouTube about the recent history of the digital world that also projected into the future, and some of the predictions made at the end of 2004 are coming true now – though I can’t remember which ones! I was surprised to learn from one of our teachers that he personally withdrew from Facebook, because (as I understood it) the CIA was in there, with access to everyone’s data, and generally he was not impressed with their information management policy. I felt a bit nervous about this – I use Facebook only to be nosey about what my overseas kids are doing. I don’t understand much about the risks. However I do believe that access to information and perhaps information itself is controlled to a large extent, and that global business organisations are probably the controllers.

My goals are still the same as I wrote on the application sheet. I want to be able to use a Smart board to enhance my teaching. Also, I want to find out how to use digital resources to aid academic writing for my students and myself. I thought of Endnote and Bronwyn (another of our teachers) told me that there is something free I could download to use. I am very interested in this as my students have such problems mastering APA style citing and referencing.

Overall I feel quite excited about it all – especially the writing resources part! The group itself also represents an opportunity for networking (thanks to Sarah, especially!), and for meeting new people.