Universities | Page 14

Copyright Universities

A few Fair Use Guides & Statements

Here are a few Fair Use guides setup by institutions. Fair Use is a general exception to copyright applies in the USA – in Canada, we have fair dealings, which applies to private study, research, news reporting, criticism and review.

These guides may be useful in devising our own fair dealings guides.

Best practices” from the Center for Social Media, includes the following:
The Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Academic and Research Libraries from the Association of Research LibrariesCode of Best Practices in Fair Use for OpenCourseWare
Copyright, Free Speech, and the Public’s Right to Know: How Journalists Think about Fair Use
(Thanks to this post from District Approach, an ALA blog)

For videos:
Fair Use and Video: Community Practices in the Fair Use of Video in Libraries

For music:
– The Music Library Association (USA) has a series of guides delaing with Digital reserves (a type of fair use in libraries, as this one from Indiana University) as well as a general Statement on the Copyright Law and Fair Use in Music.

For images:
Visual Resources Association: Statement on the Fair Use of Images for Teaching, Research, and Study (see this blog post: New College Art Association Standards and Guidelines on the Fair Use of Images posted by Linda Downs)

Blended Learning

A MOOC about MOOCs (or blending blended learning)

A recent blog post from Inside Higher Ed pointed me in the direction of this open course or MOOC:

Instructional Ideas and Technology Tools for Online Success / http://events.blackboard.com/open

I could not resist the temptation to enroll despite the fact that I have a pretty full plate for the next few weeks. By the way, you can read more about Massively Open Online Course (or MOOCs) on this recent post on OutFind.ca.

Blended Learning Concordia University Information literacy

Thoughts on a university library’s role in blended learning

We had a very interesting meeting today with Concordia’s Center for Teaching & Learning. The goal of the presentation was to explore partnership ideas, but we also discussed how the Library could contribute to a blended learning initiative at our institution.

Here are some thoughts about the blended learning environment (I purposefully use the environment paradigm, which I borrow from systems theory as posited by Luhmann)

Firstly, the main point brought was the idea of a “learning object” – a concept that we did not quite hammer out. I would offer this personal definition : a learning object is a type of document that presents information or knowledge to enable a learner to achieve a specific outcome. A learning object may (recursively) contain one or many other learning objects. Templates are useful tools to present this information or knowledge in a structured way. A learning object repository is a collection of curated learning objects, with associated metadata.

Secound, I would like to point out that there are many agents in this environment : the learners (obviously), the instructor or their assistant, the content owners and the system administrators. Each one of them has a role to play in the conception, organisation and provision of learning objects to learners.

Of course, the goal would be to identify all the learning objects and all the agents that are relevant in this environment. It may be easier to start with all the distinct templates of learning objects (as there may be too many learning objects).

Which now brings me to this conceptual model:
Collaborative Document Management Framework

I devised this model during the course of my graduate degree in law (I’ve explained it on this blog post) and I’ve presented it at an IFLA Pre-Conference.

Now, this model tries to map out the Web 2.0 environment – I will make the claim that “blended learning” is functionally equivalent to Web 2.0 on a conceptual level (sorry for not prouving this point thoroughly – more on that later perhaps).

It is defined as 2 elements, documents and agents, interacting through 4 generic relationships: linking (document-document); conversations or intermediations (agent-agent); using (document-agent); and contributing (agent-document). This is meaningful in a discussion of a library’s role in a blended learning environment as is helps define exactly where it may be useful.

Specifically, I find that the priority is to identify areas where librarians may be contributing content – creating learning objects, followed closely to linking these learning objects to form paths through the knowledge base. Finally, librarians may play a role in the conversations that may happen in the environment between the various agents (focussing, as a priority, with the conversations that happen with the gatekeepers of knowledge: instructors and their assistants).

Of course, this is an off the cuff exploration of a complex topic, where I pin some broad concepts on a simplification of the real world. But it makes sense ! Please feel free to share comments or questions below…

Special thanks to Pamela Carson and Vince Graziano, two colleagues from Concordia University Libraries, for our very interesting conversation that was instrumental in organizing this post.

Blended Learning Videos

More on the TED-Ed Platform from The Atlantic

This blog post from The Atlantic (The Digital Education Revolution, Cont’d: Meet TED-Ed’s New Online Learning Platform by Megan Garber) gives more insight on the new TED-Ed platform.

In addition to templates for content and customization,

Most intriguing: Teachers can customize the lessons they create on a student-by-student basis, using the TED-Ed platform both to track individual student progress and to tailor questions to student interests and skill levels. The site offers real-time feedback to students, letting them know when they get answers right and providing hints when they get answers wrong.

You can also watch a promotional video I already added to OutFind.ca.
Sounds really cool!

Inspiration Universities

Changing universities

The student strikes in Québec and the debate surrounding higher-education costs are but a single example of the pressures affecting universities. Here are some interesting takes on this issue:

TEDxRyersonU – Dr. Alan Shepard – Think Different: Why Universities Need to Change
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RC7gJ3SmDJw&w=400&h=233]

You might like “Imagining the Future of the University” on the Chronicle of Higher Education blog by “Prof. Hacker” on March 15, 2012.

Also of interest, is this article by John Tagg in Change (the Magazine of higher learning) called Why Does the Faculty Resist Change?. The article presents the difficulties in managing and optimizing the curriculum in universities.

In my personal opinion, Universities are a complex ecosystem where a multitude of fauna and flora interact to create and foster a learning environment for individuals and society at large. It imposes itself a style constraint, where “democracy” is taken to a level of consensual decision-making with little regard to the end-result. Process over outcome. This is not bad in and of itself, just something one does not encounter in many places – I would assume the United Nations and perhaps (still) certain government agencies…

The problem is that everybody is involved in decisions, but it is hard to find someone responsible. Discussion is key and we all take a (small) step at the same time. Frustrating and inefficient for some, fascinating and collaborative for others. I haven’t yet figured out the key elements that can halt or hurry a project, but I assume humility and openness are key elements.

But trying to get a project to start is not obvious, but absolutely rewarding given the potential benefits for society!

Inspiration Open education

MOOCs and open education

MOOCs, MITx and Udacity. Should university education be open to all and free of cost? These and related questions are explored in two recent blog post on The Guardian’s Higher Education Network blog.

MITx is testing alternate delivery mechanism, with a low-cost course on electronics this semester (and more announced in the Fall). Also of note, Steven Schwartz‘s mention Sebastian Thrun’s Udacity, great examples of open education. But most interesting are the MOOCs.

Bonnie Stewart presents open online learning environments called Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC). For an introduction to Moocs, watch this video :

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eW3gMGqcZQc&amp]

Actually, the MOOC.ca initiative is housed at the University of Prince Edward Island – they’ve used the technology to launch a MOOC for new students called xpu.ca.

For more information, see this MOOC Guide Wiki.

Hat tips to Bonnie Stewart for her great post and to Steven Schwartz for his Universities leading the way with education technology, both on the (newly discovered) Higher Education Network blog on The Guardian.