• Examples of open education practices enabled by OpenETC infrastructure

    For some time I’ve been wanting to share some examples of what open education practices (OEP) enabled by open ed tech looks like in practice.  OpenETC provides open ed tech infrastructure to the BC higher ed sector in the form of 3 types of services:  WordPress, Mattermost, and Sandstorm click and go apps.  The most visible examples of OEP are in the WordPress part of OpenETC, since Mattermost (open source Slack) is a more private class or group space, and Sandstorm uses-in-practice aren’t visible to us as administrators. So this is a round-up of a selection of uses of WordPress in OpenETC. WordPress E-portfolios Last year, the biggest uptake for OpenETC…

  • Imagining LXP-light or the open source alternative

    While I was at JIBC we had a demand and a need for unconventional online learning spaces and this pushed us in interesting ways. On more than one occasion we hired Alan Levine – aka @cogdog – to take our ideas and build them. The most well-known application of that are the Mural and Agora sites which combined SPLOTs, the DS106 features, Discourse and a plethora of other things (including his fantastic photography). But there are 2 lesser known JIBC/Alan Levine collaborations that are worth highlighting in our collective struggle to move beyond LMS. Constellations Constellations was the first attempt to move in a significantly new direction in the area…

  • Reflecting on a decade

    This week I’m wrapping up almost a decade at JIBC (9 years and 7 months to be exact). This is almost 3x longer than any other stay with an employer and it feels important to pause and reflect on this formative time. I started at JIBC as an Educational Technology Specialist. It was a brand new position, with no rules and few expectations other than “we need you to harness the online learning activity that is happening here”. It came with a 40k budget and an office of one, but this office of one had a door, a huge window, and a view of the pond. I had spent the…

  • The Future of Ed Tech in Higher Ed when Open Source is a Radical Solution

    Yesterday, I had the wonderful opportunity to be a keynote speaker at the Open Apereo 2019 conference. This is the first time a keynote I’ve done has been recorded so I’m posting the recording as well as the text script (even thought I diverged from it on occasion). I have nothing but huge gratitude to all the wonderful organizers and people I met at the conference in LA and I sincerely hope that our complementary worlds of open education and Apereo will overlap more in our future activities. It is a great pleasure to be here today, not only because I am a huge admirer of Apereo but also because…

  • Pop Up Ed Tech, Trust, and Ephemerality

    This post captures a back and forth text conversation that Anne-Marie Scott and I had about one of her many brilliant ed tech ideas. She’ll have a version of this posted over on her site as soon as she gets back from the cinema, but in the meantime her blog is a treasure trove of higher ed and ed tech thinking. T – The other day we were chatting about open ed tech infrastructures and you mentioned something that caught my attention… you called it Pop up tech.  My head went to the concept of pop up shops, physical spaces that are occupied briefly by a brand and their products…

  • Don’t let your online strategy become a conversation about which LMS to use

    I’m that age where I can say I’ve been working in ed tech for 15 + years.  Like many of us, my life in ed tech in higher education began more or less with the LMS.  Through the years I’ve witnessed the good, the bad, and the ugly with seemingly endless tentacles that the LMS brings to our discussions about teaching and learning and especially online learning in our institutions. Here’s the short of it. LMS’s do some things really well and are not going to go away.  We still use an LMS at our institution, and while I would really like the vendor to invest some of our hard…

  • Decentralized structures and the innovation agenda

    In a few of my posts on innovation, I’ve talked about the role that teaching and learning centres have in supporting an institutional innovation agenda, and where they can run into trouble.  In my last post, I argued that without proper prioritization, innovation can become an add-on watered down initiative that the centre is tasked with. I also wrote in one of my earlier posts about finding  the innovators in the institution, who are likely scattered across programs and the importance of recognizing and building on what they are doing.  I’m essentially advocating for a bottom up and top down approach to innovation with a goal of healthy and meaningful…

  • Looking back at a rejected ELI 2010 submission

    In the spirit of ed tech history, I was reminded in a roundabout way of a rejected Educause submission Mark Bullen and I submitted in 2010. We’d been researching and writing about the absurdity of the Net Gen discourse for a couple of years by then, Mark’s Net Gen Nonsense blog was already a well established resource for collecting and disseminating on the topic, we had a peer reviewed article published, and more than an handful of presentations on the topic.  Interestingly, I recall that being on the other side of the Net Gen discourse fence felt like being the weirdo at a party full of cool kids, and I know…

  • Run, Computer, Run: The Mythology of Educational Innovation

      When I was prepping my keynote for CNIE, I encountered some interesting quotes taken from a 1969 collection of essays playfully entitled Run, Computer, Run: The Mythology of Educational Innovation written by Anthony Oettinger.  There are literally no copies on the interwebs that I could find, but I was able to interlibrary loan a copy, ran out of time, digitized a copy, and in the interest of important history I’m sharing it here:   run computer run 1969.  I haven’t had to photocopy an entire book since about 1998, so the 25 minutes at the copier flipping pages and pressing the Start button 150 times may have been a bit…

  • Innovation in Higher Education…and other blasts from the past

    I had the pleasure to be a keynote at CNIE 2017 in Banff last week, 14 years after first attending the very first iteration of this conference in the exact same location. This year’s theme was Exploring our past, present and future, which could not have been a more perfect theme to talk about a topic I’ve become quite interested in over the past year.  Last year I began looking into the past of concepts like open pedagogy/pédagogie ouverte  and delving into this past has really helped me gain some perspective on how we are currently talking about open.  Preparing for the CNIE keynote gave me a great opportunity to delve  more deeply into the past…

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