A Trip Across the City!

greeting-1296493_1280

For what it’s worth, I found it hard to find a free image of businesswomen shaking hands (clarification: with their faces showing, not just generic hands!). Make of that what you will, and take into account the fact that I spent less than 6 minutes on the endeavor, but it did remind me of Women Laughing Alone with Salad.  

Anyway! My stock photo woes aside, this week is busy busy busy. Yesterday, I took a trip over to Mary Immaculate College to carry out my interview for TW5212. I interviewed an educational technologist, who actually did this MA about 6 years ago! He informed me that there are a few past-MA students working in educational technology over there, which is awesome. 

The interview was a fantastic experience. I am not going to lie, when I first heard about this assignment last semester, I recoiled at the thought of A) tracking down a stranger and asking them to give me an hour of their time, and B) actually interviewing them in person. The horror! I couldn’t have been more wrong.

I decided to contact my interviewee as my summer project (an online resource for UL students) has deepened my interest in third level education and technology. 

Trolls and Technology…

In 2014, I went on Erasmus to Norway for 5 months. At that point, I was used to technology in college in the form of Sulis, emails and those headsets we used in Spanish labs in first year! Everything in Norway was done with technology. In some of my classes, instead of putting up our hands and answering questions, we would log into a website and type our opinions via our smartphones. I believe it was a function of the university’s Learning Management System, Fronter. Which, by the way, I can pronounce in an impeccable Norwegian accent. 

Many of the business classes were simply too large to fit in one hall, so half of the class would sit in a lecture hall with the lecturer, and the other half would sit in the hall next door and watch via videolink. When it came to exams, we used our own laptops! We had to download software that locked us into the test, and wrote our essays from our own devices. I learned to just shrug and think “Okay, so this is how we do things here” a lot. 

Times are a-changin’…

All this to say, I am fascinated with how technology is creeping into universities. Speaking to my interviewee, it became obvious that the field has exploded with interest in the past 4 or 5 years, and that it is rapidly expanding. He provided me with so much insight into how we can effectively communicate with clients, and the challenges that we can face when bringing technology to reluctant users.

He also gave me a lot of think about, software wise. He mentioned some great open-source resources, such as eXeLearning which is another option to look at for the summer project! 

The rest of the week…

I am hyper-focused on getting my RM6011 proposal finished. I have the bones of it complete, and in my head know where I am going. The biggest challenge ahead is redesigning my interface designs! I am happy with the specifications I have already, but I need to create them in Illustrator, where I think they’ll ‘look the part’ more. 

Until next time! 

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4 thoughts on “A Trip Across the City!

  1. Hi Nicola, I had no idea that women eating salad was a thing. I must look out for this.

    Your description of students asking questions via smartphone in lectures reminded me of using Mentimeter, https://www.menti.com/ at a LearningTechLabs meet up last month. We used it to ask our questions, which then appeared, text-like on screen. Much better than putting our hands up – and anonymous too (just in case the question was daft!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Women laughing while eating salad is one of my favourite memes! It gets more ridiculous the more you look at them.

      Mentimeter looks pretty similar to what we used. You’re right, it can be a very beneficial way of including the whole class, and not just the people brave enough to put their hands up!

      Like

  2. Women laughing alone with salad -I mean isn’t that a goal we all have in life!?

    I’ll (jokingly!) challenge your search for the right image to represent your thoughts though: How do you know those aren’t women’s hands shaking? Couldn’t they be women in suits and shirts? Jeez -stereotype women’s business wear much?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haaa! Well, what I actually wanted was faces in the picture, and not just hands! But I couldn’t find that! I’ve worn suits to work myself so of course I consider them womenswear! #powertothepantssuit

      I myself spend most of my days laughing with salad.

      Like

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