I’m often asked about new technology to offer faculty for use in their classes. The first answer is number 3 below – best to use tools with which we are already familiar. If the technology isn’t transparent, then it becomes the focus instead of the pedagogy or the content. In this article from Jesse Stommel via Hybrid Pedagogy about Creating a Digital Assignment, he offers many great ideas (as always.) But on a fundamental level, we often can’t get past the concept of anything minimally digital if the trepidation of a new tool gets in the way.
“Questions I ask myself when creating a digital assignment or hybrid course:
1. What is my primary goal for students with this course / assignment?
2. What is my digital pedagogy? How does my goal for this assignment intersect with my broader teaching philosophy?
3. What tools that I already use analog or digital could help me achieve these goals? It is often best to use the tools with which we are already familiar, rather than turning to the shiny and newfangled.
4. In order for this activity / class to work, what gaps do I need to fill with other tools / strategies?
5. Is my idea simple enough? What can I do to streamline the activity?
6. What is my goal beyond this assignment / course? How will the activity and my pedagogy evolve? In other words, don’t feel like you have to meet all your goals during the first attempt — think of the process, from the start, as iterative. Think also about how you can bring students their feedback and the fruits of their work during the first iteration into the continuing evolution of the activity / course.
7. Go back to step 1 and work through these steps and likely several times.”