DS106: Open Digital Storytelling

March 11, 2014
10:00 am - 11:00 am PST
By Educator Innovator

What happens when you take a college course and turn it into a ‘come-one, come-all’ open learning environment?

Key Questions and Comments:

  • (03:20) An introduction to Digital Storytelling 106 (DS106).
  • (08:25) I don’t think we ever had ideas that DS106 would be a huge, 2,000-person affair…what I really liked is that they were aggregating everybody’s narratives and blogs and different spaces into one central hub. The course was happening out in the open.
  • (11:30) Background on DS106’s “Assignment Bank” and the idea of giving students the ability to create their own assignments.
  • (15:35) One of the cool things I loved about the Assignment Bank is that you could introduce things that are popular at the moment on the internet…It’s a placeholder for cool things that people create on the web that they think is outside of any notion of learning: something you do as opposed to sitting in a classroom.
  • (19:53) Do you think that the Assignment Bank could be adopted to subjects other than pop culture & popular culture on the web? Do you think it can be done, and how?
  • (24:30) Background on the University of Mary-Washington’s “A Domain Of One’s Own” initiative.
  • (27:51) If you go to community.umwdomains.com, what you see is students and faculty together, sharing and thinking and blogging their educational experience. I like to quote Gardner Campbell: “it’s exposing the life and the mind of UMW.”
  • (31:00) How much of DS106 depends on WordPress categorization?
  • (37:30) We believe that, as teachers, we should be trying to do the assignments, too, to model it. When students see that the instructors are in there creating an animated GIF at the same time you are, it changes that dynamic a lot.
  • (39:25) What advice would you have for other higher-ed practitioners who might want to emulate what DS106 has done?
  • (44:00) To get good at something, it’s not the Malcolm Gladwell ‘bang a drum for 10,000 hours and you get to be a good drummer’; it’s this iterative process of experimenting and trying and failing. DS106 gives people a place to do that where there’s no consequence.
  • (48:20) [Referencing DS106 Inspire] I think that idea about, in a community, not just saying ‘Here’s my best work,’ but what does it mean when I say ‘Here’s Jim’s best work. This is why I think his work is really good’? That’s a powerful amplifier within a community.
  • (54:32) I think part of what happens that gets me excited is when other people fuel into it, they feed it, they help me see something else. I’ve been in that dark space where you’re just teaching a class by yourself and it spirals down. I’ve been further and further from that space the more I’ve let other people in and they’ve helped me see the possibilities.

From this Series:

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During the broadcast, the conversation also took place on Twitter using the hashtags #connectedlearning and #ReclaimOpen.

Guests for this webinar included:

  • Jim Groom – Director of the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies and adjunct professor at the University of Mary Washington; creator of ds106
  • Alan Levine – Web technology consultant and educational technology innovator; teacher at ds106
  • Howard Rheingold – Author, educator, “online instigator”, and virtual community pioneer

Resources for this webinar:

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