Sorry to all of you for receiving two previous emails with this post (this being the third). This one has one added idea, so there 🙂
Here are some ideas I have about possible projects. I have no clue how feasible these projects actually are.
1. I’ve been playing a game on my phone called QuizUp. It has different categories with several topics in each (e.g., Arts –> architecture, musicals, paintings, etc.). You can connect through Facebook and play against your friends or you can play against strangers. As you win matches, you go up in levels. I think something like this could be used in my Intro to Psychology course, or any course that is term-heavy. Students could play against each other and maybe even gain points for making it past a certain level.
2. Sorry for the lit review… I read a study in which professors created a Facebook page for the class. Level of disclosure was manipulated (high, medium, and low). The researchers were investigating whether amount of self-disclosure by professors had any effect on students’ motivation and students’ perception of the professor and class climate. They found that, indeed, high self-disclosure led to greater motivation and greater positive perceptions of the professor and class climate. Some students, however, felt that teacher use of Facebook was inappropriate. :/
This study got me thinking about the possibility of creating a Facebook-style page for courses. Students and professors could post course-relevant articles, pictures, links, etc. Not that sure about this idea, though. I must admit. I’m not sure there’s much new here, is what I mean.
3. Kathleen Fitzpatrick’s book Planned Obsolescence got me thinking about how great it would be to receive feedback on projects as I was hammering them out. It’s what I get to do in lab with my advisor and lab mates, but what if that process could be opened up to others within the field? By the way, I ran this idea by two of my lab mates and they were in no uncertain terms against it. Their fears of being “scooped” were too great to entertain the benefits of having extra eyes and brains on their unfinished work. I tried to explain that there would be evidence of their ideas being theirs, in case someone tried to pass it off as their own, but they had stopped listening. I envision this being a website that would facilitate the process of feedback.
This idea is the riskiest, and I imagine the one that would be the hardest to get off the ground. It’s also the one I believe in the most.
4. I’ve also been thinking about the use of clickers in the classroom and wondering if there may not be a more accessible way of doing the same thing. What if smartphones could be used to interact with the instructor’s lecture? Kind of like how I can get my iphone to communicate with my appleTV. This sounds complicated to me, but since we’re dreaming things up…
That’s it for now.