Prospect project

The Prospect project at UNC’s DIL

Prospect is a WordPress plugin.  In an overly wordy sentence, Prospect is a domain-agnostic framework for data visualization in support of the digital humanities.

The concept is a simple one.  We take data, and we represent it with images.  We all get that part of it.  The importance of that kind of work relies on the fact that we are humans, and we understand visual structures better and with more fidelity than we do tables of data.

Digital humanities isn’t just limited to the humanities – the design concepts that guide that field are relevant to all domains.  At that level what we’re really talking about is a digital literacy, and one that will be instrumental in many of the possible futures that exist for our students.

first year experience: functional literacy

Digital (Re)Visions: Blending Pedagogical Strategies with Dynamic Classroom Tactics

I therefore approach that aspect of the FYW class with this baseline assumption: Most of the eighteen- to twenty-year-olds who attend The University of Arizona already communicate via digital technologies in various ways and can learn to use template-based applications with relative ease, especially if they are first given time during class to collaborate on penalty-free projects with select applications.

Beyond that initial experimentation with the capabilities and functionality of new technologies, what FYW students most need to learn in our limited time is a thing or two about conventions that span across many online publishing venues and multimodal genres (such as nonlinearity and linking) and basic design principles (such as visual organization, coherence, and impact). Also essential are multiple conversations about fair use, copyright, and other ethical concerns regarding representation of self, others, and ideas that students must consider when going public with their compositions. Such an approach builds on what Stuart Selber (2004) calls the “functional literacy” of digital technology that FYW students typically bring to these classes, challenging students to develop critical and rhetorical literacies and become questioners and producers of digital texts.

I ask my FYW students to translate their written public arguments (open letters; letters to editors, public figures, or organizations; opinion columns; perspective-forwarding creative nonfiction) into more visually and/or aurally oriented arguments (via Prezi or YouTube; through the creation of editorial cartoons, infographics, public service announcements or other multimodal texts). (For more information, see the assignment sheet

social media and critical thinking

Does social media make room for critical thinking?

social media critical thinking

social media critical thinking

Sinprakob, S., & Songkram, N. (2015). A Proposed Model of Problem-based Learning on Social Media in Cooperation with Searching Technique to Enhance Critical Thinking of Undergraduate Students. Procedia – Social And Behavioral Sciences, 174(International Conference on New Horizons in Education, INTE 2014, 25-27 June 2014, Paris, France), 2027-2030. doi:10.1016/j.sbspro.2015.01.871

Bailey, A. (2014). Teaching Alice Walker’s The Color Purple: Using Technology and Social Media To Foster Critical Thinking and Reflection. Virginia English Journal, 64(1), 17.

Eales-Reynolds, L., Gillham, D., Grech, C., Clarke, C., & Cornell, J. (2012). A study of the development of critical thinking skills using an innovative web 2.0 tool. Nurse Education Today, 32(7), 752-756. doi:10.1016/j.nedt.2012.05.017

Baldino, S. (2014). The Classroom Blog: Enhancing Critical Thinking, Substantive Discussion, and Appropriate Online Interaction. Voices From The Middle, 22(2), 29.

Ravenscroft, A., Warburton, S., Hatzipanagos, S., & Conole, G. (2012). Designing and evaluating social media for learning: shaping social networking into social learning?. Journal Of Computer Assisted Learning, 28(3), 177-182. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2729.2012.00484.x

finding ways to capture meaningful informal learning experiences by explicitly linking these to formal structures, and providing frameworks within which informal learning can then be validated and accredited (Cedefop Report 2007).

Education is clearly a social process but it is probably much closer to an ongoing discussion or debate than an extended celebration with an ever-expanding network of friends (p. 179, Ravenscroft et al.)

the community of inquiry (COI) model developed by Garrison and Anderson (2003) and social network analysis (SNA). European Commission-funded integrated

project called MATURE (Continuous Social Learning in Knowledge Networks), which is investigating how technology-mediated informal learning leads to improved knowledge practices in the digital workplace
Fitzgibbons, M. (2014). Teaching political science students to find and evaluate information in the social media flow. In I. Management Association, STEM education: Concepts, methodologies, tools, and applications. Hershey, PA: IGI Global. Retrieved from
Cheung, C. (2010). Web 2.0: Challenges and Opportunities for Media Education and Beyond. E-Learning And Digital Media, 7(4), 328-337.
Key to using social media is the ability to stand back and evaluate the credibility of a source of information, apart from the actual content. While developing this critical attitude toward traditional media is important, the attitude is even more crucial in the context of using social media because information didn’t go through the vetting process of formal publication. Can the student corroborate the information from multiple sources? How recent is this information? Are the author’s credentials appropriate? In other words, the ability to step back, to become aware of the metatext or metacontext is more important than ever.
Coad, D. T. (2013). Developing Critical Literacy and Critical Thinking through Facebook. Kairos: A Journal Of Rhetoric, Technology, And Pedagogy, 18(1).
Many instructors believe that writing on social networking sites undermines the rhetorical skills students learn in class because of the slang and abbreviations often used on these sites; such instructors may believe that social networks are the end of students’ critical awareness when they communicate. Johndan Johnson-Eilola and Stuart A. Selber (2009) contended that electronic writing forms actually require “sophisticated skills of understanding concrete rhetorical situations, analyzing audiences (and their goals and inclinations), and constructing concise, information-laden texts, as a part of a dynamic, unfolding, social process” (p. 18). It is this dynamic process that makes social networking a perfect match for the composition classroom and for teaching rhetorical skills: It helps students see how communication works in real, live rhetorical situations. Many students do not believe that communication in these media requires any kind of valuable literacy skills because they buy into the myth of how the news media portray social networks as valueless forms of communication that are decaying young people’s minds. This is why I introduced students to the passage from Invisible Man: to get them thinking about what kinds of skills they learn on Facebook. I found the text useful for helping them acknowledge the skills they are building in these writing spaces.
Stuart A. Selber (2004) in Multiliteracies for a Digital Age criticized so-called computer literacy classes for having “focused primarily on data representations, numbering systems, operating systems, file formats, and hardware and software components” rather than on the task of teaching students to be “informed questioners of technology” (p. 74). In a time when, as Sheelah M. Sweeny (2010) noted, “the ability to stay connected with others is constant,” it is increasingly important to engage composition students in critical thinking about the spaces they write in (p. 121). It is becoming clearer, as technology giants such as Google® and Apple® introduce new technologies, that critical literacy and critical thinking about technology are necessary for our students’ futures.
Valentini, C. (2015). Is using social media “good” for the public relations profession? A critical reflection. Public Relations Review, 41(2), 170-177. doi:10.1016/j.pubrev.2014.11.009
p. 172 there is no doubt that digital technologies and social media have contributed to a major alteration in people’s interpersonal communications and relational practices. Inter- personal communications have substantially altered, at least in Western and developed countries, as a result of the culture of increased connectivity that has emerged from social media’s engineering sociality ( van Dijck, 2013 ), which allows anyone to be online and to connect to others. Physical presence is no longer a precondition for interpersonal communication.
(Jiping) The Pew Research Center ( Smith & Duggan, 2013 , October 21) indicates that one in every ten American adults has used an online dating site or mobile dating app to seek a partner, and that in the last eight years the proportion of Americans who say that they met their current partner online has doubled. Another study conducted by the same organization ( Lenhart & Duggan, 2014 , February 11) shows that 25% of married or partnered adults who text, have texted their partner while they were both home together, that 21% of cell-phone owners or internet users in a committed relationship have felt closer to their spouse or partner because of exchanges they had online or via text message. Another 9% of adults have resolved online or by text message an argument with their partner that they were having difficulty resolving person to person ( Lenhart & Duggan, 2014 , February 11). These results indicate that digital technologies are not simply tools that facilitate communications: they have a substantial impact on the way humans interact and relate to one another. In other words, they affect the dynamics of interpersonal relations

ePortfolio patterns

Learning made visible: successful ePortfolio patterns across the U.S.

  • Register for first AAEEBL webinar of 2015-2016 on September 16 at 1 pm US EDT.  Jeff Yan of Digication addressing
    “Learning made visible: successful ePortfolio patterns across the U.S.” 

Jeff, a former academic, is the CEO of Digication, one of the most successful eportfolio companies in the U. S.  He will help us understand the big picture:  how are eportfolios being used on campuses and what works best.

This Webinar is co-sponsored by AAC&U, EPAC and IJeP.

Once you register, you will see an acknowledgement page with the URL to go to on Wednesday. You will not need a password.

Recording available:

The International Journal of ePortfolio (IJeP) is a double-blind, peer-reviewed, open access journal freely available online.


Pebble Pad


Using an ePortfolio to Assess the Outcomes of a First-Year Seminar: Student Narrative and Authentic Assessment;

Association for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning

themes: strong admin support, instructional design

crowdsourcing: teacher asks students to respond to critical thinking q/s and students populate their eportfolio

make learning visible for ” students, faculty, institution and employer

E-Portfolios: Competency Marketplaces For Colleges
only 13% of Millennials are using LinkedIn and only 7% more have future plans to do so. As I think about it, this makes sense. LinkedIn’s content isn’t directed at traditional-age college students. And few students have professional relationships or relevant work experience to show, which is the whole point of $LNKD.

How does the ePortfolio support in helping students achieve those goals. The ePortfolio should not be another thing they (and the faculty) need to do on top of everything else they are already doing.



iPad Skills

15 iPad Skills Every Teacher and Student should Have

1- My students should be able to create presentations

2- My students should be able to create digital stories.

3- My students should be able to create eBooks

4- My students should be able  to print their docs right from their iPad

5- My students should be able to create videos

6- I want to Improve my students reading skills

7- My students should be able to take notes on their iPad

8- My students should be able to create written content on their iPads

9- My students should be able to use White Boards from their iPads

10-My students should be able to record audio clips

11- My students should be able to screen share

12-My students should be able to do their homework with the help of iPad

13- My students should be able to create mind maps

14-My students should be able to do research using iPad

15-My students should be able to create digital portfolios

20 Digital Skills Every 21st Century Teacher should Have

The 20 Digital Skills Every 21st Century Teacher should Have

1- Create and edit  digital audio
2- Use Social bookmarking to share resources with and between learners
3- Use blogs and wikis to create online platforms for students
4- Exploit digital images for classroom use
5- Use video content to engage students
6- Use infographics to visually stimulate students
7- Use Social networking sites to connect with colleagues and grow professionally

8- Create and deliver asynchronous presentations and training sessions
9- Compile a digital e-portfolio for their own development
10- be able to detect plagiarized works in students assignments
11- Create screen capture videos and tutorials
12- Curate web content for classroom learning
13- Use and provide students with task management tools to organize their work and plan their learning
14- Use polling software to create a real-time survey in class
15- Understand issues related to copyright and fair use of online materials
16- Use digital assessment tools to create quizzesHere are some tools for teachers to develop this skill
17- Find and evaluate authentic web based content
18- Use digital tools for time management purposes
19- Use note taking tools to share interesting content with your students
20- Use of online sticky notes to capture interesting ideas

digital storytelling

Stories are for sorting and storing

> Willard,


> The post 29.126 has been niggling at me for days. I originally want to

> reply with a simple observation that the appeal to storytelling is

> cast in such a way to avoid the complications of narration’s relation

> to narrative (the telling and the told; shown and said). But it was

> the theme of “borrowing” from one domain by another that leads me to

> recall a counter-narrative where there is no need to borrow between

> domains since the military-industrial-entertainment complex is one entity.


> I contend that fundamental to human interaction is narration:

> attentiveness to how stories are related. Stories are for sorting and

> storing. *Sometimes this soothes paranoia induced by too much

> linearity.*


> A while ago (1996), I explored recursivity and narrativity. My

> starting point was the ability to ask questions (and learn from one’s

> bodily reactions). The musings may or may not have military relevance.

> Judge for

> yourselves:


> <quote>


> Pedagogical situations are sensory. They are also interpersonal.

> Because they are sensory this makes even learning by oneself interpersonal.

> Egocentric speech is like a dialogue between the senses. In

> Vygotsky’s and Luria’s experiments, children placed in problem-solving

> situations that were slightly too difficult for them displayed egocentric speech.

> One could consider these as self-induced metadiscursive moments. The

> self in crisis will disassociate and one’s questionning becomes the

> object of a question.


> Not only is the human self as a metabeing both fracturable and

> affiliable in itself, it is also prone to narrativity. That is, the

> human self will project its self-making onto the world in order to

> generate stories from sequences and to break stories into recombinant

> sequences. Its operations on signs are material practices with consequences for world-making.


> The fracturable affiliable self calls for reproductive models suitable

> to the interactions of multi-sensate beings, models that render dyads

> dialectical, questionable, answerable. Narrativity understood

> dialectically does not merely mean making sequences or strings of

> events into stories but also stories into things, strung together for

> more stories. From such an understanding, emerge non-dyadic

> narratives of reproduction, narratives where a thing-born transforms

> itself into an event, comes to understand itself as a process.


> </quote>




> Funny to consider that those remarks were based in a consideration of

> language and feedback mechanisms. Make me think that the storytelling

> as “potent form of emotional cueing” may be directed to undesired

> responses such as greater self-reflexivity. And depending on how they

> are parsed, Hollywood films can contribute to undesired responses

> including escape. :)


> Francois Lachance, Scholar-at-large



> to think is often to sort, to store and to shuffle: humble, embodied

> tasks


> On Mon, 29 Jun 2015, Humanist Discussion Group wrote:






>> Sharon Ghamari-Tabrizi, in “The Convergence of the Pentagon and

>> Hollywood” (Memory Bytes: History, Technology, and Digital Culture, ed.

>> Rabinovitz and Geil, 2004), describes in some detail the adoption by

>> the U.S. military of the entertainment industry’s storytelling

>> techniques implemented by means of simulation. This chapter follows

>> on from her excellent “Simulating the Unthinkable: Gaming Future War

>> in the 1950s and 1960s”, Social Studies of Science 30.2 (2000). In

>> the 2004 piece she describes a U.S. National Research Council

>> workshop in October 1996 at which representatives from film, video

>> game, entertainment and theme-parks came together with those from the

>> Department of Defense, academia and the defense industries. There is

>> much about this convergence that we might productively take an

>> interest in. Let me, however, highlight storytelling in particular.


>> In a military context, Ghamari-Tabrizi points out, skilled

>> storytelling techniques are used to help participants in a VR

>> environment sense that they are in a real environment and behave

>> accordingly. Storytelling functions as a potent form of emotional

>> cueing that would seem to elicit the desired responses. But

>> especially interesting, I think, is the fact that “many conference

>> participants argued that the preferred mode of experiential immersion

>> in electronic media is not the unframed chaos of hypertext, but

>> old-fashioned storytelling.” She quotes Alex Seiden of Industrial

>> Light and Magic (note the date — 1996): “I’ve never seen a CD-ROM

>> that moved me the way a powerful film has. I’ve never visited a Web

>> page with great emotional impact. I contend that linear narrative is

>> the fundamental art form of humankind: the novel, the play, the film… these are the forms that define our cultural experience.”


>> Comments?


>> Yours,

>> WM

>> —

>> Willard McCarty (, Professor, Department of

>> Digital Humanities, King’s College London, and Digital Humanities

>> Research Group, University of Western Sydney

Turning Technophobia through Digital Storytelling


Video Storytelling in Social Media Marketing

Video Storytelling in Social Media Marketing

#1: Post Stories From Your Customers

#2: Create a Fictional Series

#3: Tell Personal Stories

#4: Shoot Documentary-Style Video

#5: Interview Guests

#6: Take Viewers Behind the Scenes

#7: Create Animated Stories

#8: Show Viewers How to Do Something

Other Stories to Tell With Video

There are a lot of interesting ways to integrate storytelling into your social videos. In addition to those featured above, here are some other stories that are well suited for video:

  • Create a single video or a series of videos to highlight humorous situations related to your business or industry.
  • If your company’s beginnings would make an interesting story, have the founder tell that story on video.
  • Are your employees involved in interesting activities or challenges? Consider featuring those stories in your social videos.
  • Tell a fictional but realistic story on video to educate viewers about your industry.
  • Find a way to combine reality TV–style video with something relevant to your audience.