SoTL #5 and #6 Reflecting on and Sharing my SoTL Plan

I am so on the same page as Irene Stewart in her post and I hope she will be happy to know that I did make it to the end of the post!

In looking at my SoTL plan, I wonder if I can even attempt to do this?? The course I would like to do this in is in the Winter so have limited time to come up with an OER, I don’t have any time on my already packed workload to do any research or OER development and have two littles at home so limited in my time and I will be honest, research scares me! The whole process of even going to the REB for approval frightens me!

So, how much energy should I put into something that I might not be able to realistically do?? Should I have chosen a smaller project/research question? In looking at it, I did change something for this course last year to try to get students into the readings more, should I just use that again this year and more formally research/document it? I think I should probably go back and look at my plan with a more realistic view and see what I actually can do and go from there…should I???? But I am so interested in OER’s!!!!!
What to do, what to do?!?!?!

I have updated my SoTL plan to include some ideas for how I might disseminate the findings of my research once I get to that point. You can view that here:

At the beginning of this Scholar journey, my research questions included :

Many students, if not all, are not doing required readings/exercises prior to coming to class or do not buy the text at all. Why is this?

What will get them interested in engaging in the material?

What might support them in engaging more in these materials? What barriers do they have with regards to doing this piece of course work?

What are their perceptions about the consequences of not doing this?
Question: How can I get the students more engaged with required reading materials outside of class time so that they come to class with a base level of knowledge, prepared to engage in discussions and activities related to the topic, rather than have me just regurgitate the reading?

Final Research Question: Will using an OER that I  have put together with more meaningful material increase the level of student engagement in required reading materials?

I didn’t have a ton of time to do the amount of research that I wanted but found a few articles to start the journey:

I honestly don’t have a plan of action as of yet. I am hoping that once this semester wraps up, I can do some proper research and try to look at this in a way that allows me to really see what others have done and try to put it together in the most meaningful way possible. My dissemination strategy is outlined in the google doc above 🙂

This is how I’m feeling right now!!!

SoTL #4: Design Your Project

Kaboompics .com

I am continuing to look at my SoTL and trying to utilize the resources that have been provided to me in the Extend mOOC to do so. I am overwhelmed with this particular project as I feel like I don’t have time to develop it to the level that I would like but am going to do my best.

When looking at the document, “Researching Teaching and Student Outcomes in Post-secondary Education: A Guide,” I started to ask myself some questions regarding the ethics of research with students.
I don’t want my students feeling like they “have to” consent to participate because of the power differential and want this experience to be as authentic as possible.
In reading that students how are more vulnerable are at a higher risk for ethical impacts of research, therefore I would be sure to provide accommodations and alternatives to those that might require it.
Students will not lose time from the regular course hours to participate in this research as I will be making in part of the learning process and will post what I can that isn’t part of my course on the Learning Management System.
Some things that I will have to discuss with our College’s REB are;

  1. The secondary use of student/participant’s academic data
  2. Timing the researcher’s access to and analysis of the data and,
  3. Data security
    These are areas that I am not as familiar with and would need to discuss a bit more ahead of my research.

 Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images

I intend to reach out to a colleague to see if they can serve as an intermediary to help me with some of the pieces of the research that might impact student’s willingness to participate.
I hadn’t thought of many of these things before going through this process but it was very helpful in putting it into perspective. I’m quite interested in other Extend mOOC participants research as well!

SoTL #3 Refine Your SoTL Plan

I unfortunately ran out of time while working on Module 6 of the Extend mOOC last week and got super busy so am just now getting back into it. The 3rd activity in this module is asking us to begin writing a research plan for a area of interest and potential framework. I got some feedback from a previous post on the mOOC which helped me to reframe my thinking for my SoTL. I updated my SoTL here:

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

I wish my office/work space was this neat!!!!

SoTL # 2 Engage with SoTL

The next step in the SoTL process with the Extend mOOC is to look at the benefits of SoTL and decide which might motivate me the most to engage in doing SoTL work. What I came up with is that it could lead to:
~ Increased reflection on teaching and learning among colleagues,
~ A stronger overall faculty that values teaching and student learning,
~ A renewed faculty excitement about teaching and greater self awareness
~ Better student outcomes

For me, my ultimate goal is to have the students walking away from my classes thinking about what they learned and seeing the benefit of their new knowledge to the work that they do or will do in the field of CYC. I also hope that students will look at this with a critical lens so that they can see if from different perspectives and relate it to their lives and work directly.

Three Keys to SoTL

After viewing

I started thinking about what SoTL means to me and was asked to identify and list three key characteristics of SoTL that resonate with your own experience and practice. This is what I came up with!!

1. SoTL is about Inquiry and Action
2. It is about thinking about and reflecting on my teaching and if there are some things I could do better that will increase the students learning.
3. It is also about practicing new ways to improve based on those reflections

Now, to look at the next steps of SoTL work!

Deep Dive and Lab Report

When reading the instructions for this Extend activity, I saw the first one that said
“take a look at these course trailers and make a 30 second commercial or trailer for your course.”

I got excited as I had already done a course trailer in another EdX course I took and wanted to do some fixes to it so I went ahead! I remember it being frustrating to work with Raw Shorts for the first time and with only having the free version, it limited me but I was able to manage. Here is what I made…nowhere near the professional videos on the Carleton website, but hey! I’m not a professional 🙂

Because I felt like this might be a bit of a cheat using something I created previously, and because I REALLY love to dive when it comes to this stuff, I decided to dive again into another activity. I started to look at Google Lit Trips but realized that it wasn’t going to be something that would benefit any of my courses at this time. Then I took a look at the Active Learning section of
 The Agora Project Challenge Bank  and complete one of the challenges. I was going to Rethink my Entire course using the Redesign Planning Document but realized that if I wanted to do that, I would need more time than I have (I only like to do things 110% or not at all)! So what can I do that will push me a bit out of my comfort zone, be relevant and applicable to my current work, and not be too onerous?!?! Create a Infographic to present data or explain a concept you say?! Well, here I go to the link, sign up for and bam! I’m hit with the realization that I need to think of a concept to make an infographic for…okay…the “Factor Table” we use in all three years of our program! I start searching for images and playing around with the program…an hour later and I still don’t even have an idea of how I want to do this. Getting frustrated, I close that window and go back to the drawing board.

Let’s try H5P!

I quickly realized after doing this, that the flash cards won’t work for my intended use so maybe I would try a memory game. I put in 15 memory cards and attempted to add pictures to them but kept getting an error message “invalid security token.” I reached out to fellow extenders to get help and when I went back to my memory game, it DELETED!!!! All my work disappeared! h

What I learned from doing this?!? That my tolerance is not great right now!!! I am completely frustrated and plan to come back to this when I have done some mindfulness and brought myself back down! I also reached out to Terry Greene (thank you thank you). He is my saviour! I just needed someone to walk me through a few things and I appreciate the help…a reminder that when you get to a place of feeling completely defeated, reach out to others!!!

I hope to get the memory game sorted and use it in my Psychopathology of Children and Adolescents 2 course to see where students are at in their knowledge of key terms before getting into the material. For now, I am going to find my zen place.

Mapping my PLN

Photo from Chris Jobling

I decided to use Coggle to map my PLN and quickly learned a few things! One, you have to pay to be able to use extra features which I wasn’t prepared to do as am not 100% certain if I will continue to use it.

Not having access to certain features made it difficult to connect some of the nodes and people in my PLN to each other if they were in different nodes. I also couldn’t necessarily identify the strength of my connections.

The other thing I learned was that using a new tool can take a bit of time! I hadn’t used Coggle before so I had to give myself a quick tutorial using You Tube and Google to answer some of my questions. It worked out just fine though as Coggle is a fairly straight forward program to use. I can see how it might be useful to use in the classroom.’s-pln-educational-technology/1ca9e500712abe1695ae962bb667e60881f2f761ca2934b23ca97b7f9e8c04d5

When mapping my PLN, I realized that I might not be using my local supports and network enough. There are several faculty and staff at Sault College that I should be connecting with more and collaborating on ideas. That is something I intend to do moving forward.

I did some searching for people that I might like to connect with /follow on Twitter to look at sharing our own practices, challenges, solutions, expertise about our roles of educators and ed tech gurus. I found a few people in the United States, and am hoping to expand my PLN in Canada a bit more as well. It’s hard not to get overwhelmed though with there being so many people trying so many wonderful things!

This module has really pushed me to look at Collaboration and the way it is being done in my own work environment. I am going to try to get some more collaborative practices happening within our College so that we can tap into the resources and expertise that are already here! We don’t and shouldn’t work in isolation of each other!


The Collaborative Dining Table

When I started doing my dining table, I decided to make it on a Prezi…it wasn’t until later in the directions that I learned that I was to share a picture of my activity! This posed a bit of a problem for me as the Prezi zoomed in and out to my information so the overall picture doesn’t necessarily show all of my work unfortunately! I decided to try using my Twitter account and post it there (as a picture) but wanted to share the actual Prezi link here on my blog as this is where I’m trying to keep my work from the mOOC together in one place.

As I was doing this activity I realized a few things…

1. The people I was collaborating with are no longer in the role/s that they were when I was working on this project,

2. The project is not happening anymore (at least not in the same way) and

3. My role has since changed but I am still extremely interested in this for my own personal/professional development.

I am hoping that I can continue, but just on a smaller scale and hopefully find some people to expand my PLN through here!

Here is the link to my Prezi


My OERs actually all passed the CRAAP test, which I think as others have pointed out is due to the fact that I try to think critically about all of these things when I am looking at resources to begin with. It is nice though to have some way to assess things that you find to ensure you aren’t just throwing random information at them (which is easy with how much info is available!). I’m hoping to look into adopting more OER textbooks in my courses/program!

I updated our padlet on the Extend mOOC to show this as well.


Curating the mOOC

When I read the instructions to find an activity I did that has a good number of responses, I struggled because none of my posts really generated that much response! Then I went back and found Krista McCracken’s discussion regarding no one having done the readings and that really resonated with me as this is a big challenge in my courses as well! I feel like I have tried so many different techniques to help with this, but still don’t see much improvement. Krista introduced me to an ed tech tool I have never heard of, 

As discussed by Krista, she talks about maybe using as a way to for students to summarize a reading, then could be used as an in-class activity and as a starting point for discussion. Thanks @kristamccracken for introducing this to my repertoire!