Unit 4 Prep Work

This is from 7/20 (with additions yesterday and today).
This is the Weekly Writing for Unit 4
I know it says Prep Work. There was a lot of prep work… this is only the ‘outward face’ of the scribbled notes.

“For your writing post this week, develop a thorough description of the situational factors impacting your lesson plan. Exhibit 3.2 in the text provides a checklist of initial considerations. If you’re developing for K-12, speak to the developmental stage of your students. If you’re developing educational content for adults, estimate the level of prior experience and describe how that will affect your lesson plan. Highlight the situational characteristics that you believe will make course development most challenging.” ED 655 Online Pedagogy spring course materials

cropped-Summer2014CITSf222-Mast-Flat2My lesson plan will be for CITS 222: Internet Authoring & Design

I chose to answer the majority of the questions posed in exhibit 3.2 as part of this prep work.

  • Specific content of the teaching and learning situation: I have between 7 and 22 students each semester (more lately). 222 is a lower division course; this is an online course–students are required to work approximately 9 hours each week.
  • Expectations of external groups: in general employers expect the student to be able to update and improve upon existing websites while students expect to build amazing sites for a variety of reasons and to meet specific needs.
  • Nature of the subject: technical but design elements are needed; this course crosses over from left-brain to right and soft science to hard depending upon student interest and prior experience. It is a cognitive course but direct application of items learned puts it much more largely in the skill building arena. This field continues to develop, but a large portion of the information has been readily accessible for well over a decade.
  • Characteristics of the learners: the majority of my students used to be full-time workers. I’ve seen a shift during the last two semesters to much younger full-time students. This course is offered as part of a group of classes that a student may choose from as part of their concentration in Computer Technology Support or Web Development and Administration in the for the A.A.S. Degree. The focus on web development and troubleshooting provided as a large portion of this course is in line with those department course requirements.  The majority of the students have dabbled with web design. All are familiar with the way navigation works. All have ideas on what they like or dislike about individual sites. Student learning styles are difficult to assess; what they choose to work on and what they turn in provides as much insight to their interest in the topic as it does their approach to learning.
  • Characteristics of the teacher: my experience dates back to 1993 when I began learning HTML and instructing others’ in its use. I have taught web design one on one and in small settings since 1994. I have taught web design online for three semesters. Prior to that time I taught UAF employees how to use Dreamweaver and Fireworks. I owned my own web design and marketing company. I’m confident in my skills. It is difficult to rate my understanding of effective teaching. I thought I knew a lot. Now I know I’ve only just begun.
  • Special pedagogical challenge: balancing between students’ desire to learn how to create awesome websites and their inability to allocate time to the effort it takes to practice and fail. Most students come up with excellent ideas as to what they want to accomplish. Few succeed. Even if they come out the other side with a fairly good grasp of web design and how to create and implement clean pages, they rarely apply it to the goal they originally had. Life looms large. Balancing life with schools is difficult for even the most adept student.

References
Fink, L. D. (2003). Creating significant learning experiences: An integrated approach to designing college courses. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.