As I prepare my final blog post that I hope I will ever write I want to conclude that I actually really did enjoy the digital writing experience. To me I saw digital writing as blog posts and only blog posts. I now see that it is so so so much more than that. I honestly means all means of communication. As far as video, or infographics, or webpage design and writing. I will say that I am not made for the blogging world. I think I will have to make my contributions to the World Wide Web anonymously from now on. Blogging was never something that I saw myself doing, not even if I was majorly passionate about something. However, I feel like for this course blogging is vital.
Something that I found interesting in the world of digital writing is that digital writers aren’t just a bunch of nerds hiding behind their computers making adjustments. They’re creative, genius, and worldly humans who choose to contribute to the world of digital writing in many different ways. I think that my issue is that I am so scared of being wrong about my writing on the Internet that someone will call me out on my being wrong. I feel that this is why I held back some in some of my assignments.
I will say that I really enjoyed all of the Units that we did this semester except the website errors and design unit. I felt like I really had no clue what I was talking about nor had enough experience to throw my own judgment on someone else’s web design. I was very uncomfortable and uneasy about this project and didn’t realize until I got too far into it that I was so confused. I really liked doing all the other units however, even the eLearning video. I found that video really interesting because I find myself googling “How To” videos all the time.
I fell that this class will benefit not only professional writing minors but any English minor or major. Digital writing is something that honestly anyone who frequents the Internet needs to take. Take for example the Wikipedia project that we dabbled with. I knew that Wikipedia wasn’t 100% accurate most of the time but I didn’t know that it was a collaboration of people who constantly are adding and taking from pages on a day-to-day basis. This is important to know for those who use this website.
To conclude, I feel that I benefited not only as a college student but as a frequent internet browser. I was able to differentiate between what was good “digital writing” and ultimately good “digital communication”. These were all seen throughout the course and I now see the ultimate goal of the course plain and clearly. I feel as if I will be able to use my new found knowledge of digital writing in my everyday life. I overall enjoyed the course and would recommend it to any student that was looking to enrich their digital writing skills and knowledge.
When using the Wave Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool I found many errors for the website I researched. The website that I researched was http://theodysseyonline.com/, the odyssey online is a website that I tend to repost to Facebook a lot. I realized that I first was mad with the web page was when the amount of pop ups and ads ran across the page. This was so extremely frustrating. The odyssey gives the viewer the options to research what they are interested in, however pop ups are not interesting to me.
The list of errors I found were thirty six total errors. There was a missing form label, an empty button, and thirty four empty links. There were only two alerts, one missing first level heading and one noscript element. This is something that as a user we can’t see by the naked eye, I found that the use of the wave helped me better understand the errors of this web page.
Way back win…good old dial up internet was the good old days. I remember when the world wide web was the slowest form of communication that’s right, the dial up internet. Those few crazy noises that came out of the speakers and once you got past step 3 you were golden.
Something else that I remember having was AIM. The coolest way to talk to your friends. I had everyones email memorized and everyone had mine memorized. We might have had something like firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com, something that reminded our friends our personality. Me, I got my AIM username later than everyone else. Yes I was one of those kids that their mom stood over their shoulder and watched each and everything that they typed. Ugh so frustrating but now that I look back it probably kept me out of a lot of mean girl drama. Looking back I feel like I didn’t really even use the internet for any kind of research. Because it was so new our teachers all still required us to go to the Library and pull sources. Something that is almost unheard of now.
Something that I really take away from this is that everyone learns in different ways and most importantly at a different pace. When I got to college I was so bummed that I didn’t just get to dive right into my area of study. That I had to take all these stupid 101 classes that really felt like a waste of my time. I mean honestly who ever learned anything from a power point presentation? These are the types of teachers like just read off a power point and I’ve completely zoned out, I’m texting my friend about what’s for lunch, and my parents have just wasted $3,000 on a class. Sad…but true.
Do I feel like we should do away with these types of classes? Yes. Will we? No. Students who don’t have a clue what they’re going to do in the world have to start somewhere. Me, I knew that I was going to teach first grade my whole life so I didn’t care about geology lab or college algebra. I felt that those classes were a complete waste of my parents money and that I didn’t need to take those classes. I’m not sure what universities will replace them with but I hope they would just have a “Education 101” class for a starting out education major.
When asked to pro and con the videos I looked up a major issue I found with most videos was the speaking clearly. Most videos the main character had either background noise or couldn’t speak loud enough to over ride the noise. I assume that this lies in the type of camera or recording device that you use. I’m no videographer but I do know the importance of enunciating. Also something that I found interesting was none of the videos gave any type of credits like “information collected from…source”. How do the viewers know that you aren’t filling them full of a bunch of random information? They don’t, they’re just believing what they view on the internet. Again a problem with our world today! I also found that characters that use proper grammar sound like they at least know what they’re talking about and those who don’t just sound like a random person posting another “How to” video.
|Negative: How to curl your hair with a flat iron?
|Positives: How to curl your hair with a straightener?
|– background noise/she was not loud enough
||– keywords used on the screen
|– the speed up doesn’t help it confuses
||– spoke loud and clear
|– be clear and upfront
||– went through the steps completely
|– didn’t use proper grammar
||– very descriptive
|– too much side chatter
The article that I chose to summarize and evaluate is “YouTutorial: A Framework for Assessing Instructional Online Video” by Matt Morain and Jason Swarts published for North Carolina State University. I thought that this would be the perfect choice that ties in perfectly to the next unit that we are covering in class.
The article is mainly about the rubric for assessing the instructional content of tutorial videos found online. The rubric is based on descriptive data derived from a constant comparative study of user-rated YouTube videos. The article states “User-generated tutorial videos are quickly emerging as a new form of technical communication, one that relies on text, images, video, and sound alike to convey a message.”
Here are a few examples of how the 47 videos were tested. There were many factors that are considered an “excellent video” and here are some examples of that. Sound was classified by type, background, voiceover, and fx. Moving image defined on-screen movement within the frame of instruction. Still image defined visual information within the frame of instruction that was not moving. Text defined any written words, moving or static. The second “grading” these videos went through were differentiated kinds of rhetorical work such as, explanation defined any instructional talk that was not accompanied by actions taken to complete the step. Demonstration defined any movement within the frame of instruction intended to illustrate a step, that is, accompanied by explanation. Doing defined any movement within the frame of instruction intended to illustrate a step, that is, not accompanied by explanation.
Overall the findings were good, average, and poor videos varied in terms of how modal forms of content were used to help viewers access, understand, and stay engaged with an instructional message. This is extremely important in the online world, there are so many videos out there that come across as informational at first but do not fully explain the needs of the viewer. The article states, “Assuming that viewers can access the content in a video, they must also be able to understand and apply that content. In connection with cognitive design we focused on the structure of the content: how tasks were outlined, how actions were related back to the task, and how the information was made generalizable.”
Above is the link to my infographic. This is something that I truly enjoyed doing. I was forced to pull all of my creative bones in my body out and hopefully the viewers love it. Technology in Education is something that i’m passionate about. I believe that all students should have access to the technology that the world is using today. It keeps our young students involved and our older students connected. Something that was my main focus when making this infographic was “the selling point” to teachers and schools. In a way its a type of marketing strategy a way that those that are passionate about something to sell it to the viewer.
In the fight over paper vs. technology…technology will always win. Personally I like to write everything out and then transfer it to my computer but that’s not the case for every student. When it comes to reading on technology vs. an actual book I prefer an actual book. Is it inconvenient? Yes. But I guess i’m “old fashion”. I think however that the students of today starting in elementary classrooms need to start on technology at a young age. Thankfully they are.
If I had grown up reading off of an iPad or submitting online homework I think I would have made it just fine in college. But now I think I struggle with the technology scene. As far as the Blog “Is Google Making Us Stupid” I don’t really think we’re “stupid” I think it’s making the world a little bit easy for us. An example I like to give is if it wasn’t for Google I wouldn’t remember how many ounces are in a pound or I wouldn’t know the meaning of a word I wasn’t familiar with. Something that I cannot imagine though is life without Google. As spoiled and as bad as that sounds I cannot imagine a life without Google.
Something we’ve talked about in class is how fast our world is moving with the internet. Our world is go go go go and the internet is what keeps us going. For example, if my phone were to go dead and I was in the middle of no where without my internet on point.
When researching sources for statistics for my infographic I ran across an article called “EdTech Stats About the Current State of Technology in Education” by Fractus Learning. The article shared different polls and studies from many different credible sources. Something that I also thought was interesting was within the links to the different polls most all had infographics on their websites.
According to a May 2013 poll of teachers across the US by Harris Interactive… “86% of teachers think it’s “important” or “absolutely essential” to use edtech in the classroom. 96% of teachers think edtech increases student engagement in learning. 89% of teachers think edtech improves student outcomes. 92% of teachers would like to use even more edtech in the classroom than they already do” (Bates). A few stats on the lower side say that only 14% of teachers use digital curricula weekly. “Only 19% of teachers use subject-specific content tools weekly” (Bates). And only 11% of teachers are implementing “BYOD” (bring your own device) programs. A good was for me to let the viewer visualize this information is make the larger numbers in large font so that there is no confusion in the high numbers. In this type of advertising you want the viewer to assume that the larger numbers stand for positive things. In this case they do.
Toward the end of the article it shares the percent of social media in schools. Whereas these percents are more middle of the road it’s still an important amount of information that ties students into technology. The article reads, “According to a July 2013 oBizMedia Infographic …96% of students with internet access report using social media, 59% of students who use social networking talk about education topics online, and 59% of schools say their students use social networking for educational purposes” (Bates). The main thing that I want to stress with this infographic is that students use technology for all sources of communication. Which honestly isn’t that what our English teachers were trying to beat in our heads all those years? The article states, “35% off schools have student and/or instructor-run blogs, and 46% of schools have students participate in online Penpal or similar international programs” (Bates). Students use the internet for an outlet of communication. This source will be extremely important to my infographic because this is where all of my statistics will come from. It was the perfect example of what I wanted with the sample infographics on hand.
Bates, Laura. “18 EdTech Stats About the Current State of Technology in Education.” Fractus Learning. N.p., 26 Aug. 2013. Web. 10 Sept. 2015.