Higher Education, Learning, Learning and Performance, Library, Online Learning, Professional Development

Why Can’t Learning in the Analog and Digital Just Get Along?

It’s the end of the academic term (well, almost, I’m still wrapping up my grading), but I have been thinking a great deal about learning, how we learn, and the modes of learning for both my students and professionals this semester. Back in March, Joshua Kim posed a series of questions related to the higher education conference learning that goes on, and questioning how we might need to rethink our own professional development for learning:

  • What if the way we think about professional development for learning professionals is actually holding back the learning profession?
  • What if what we really need is to create new knowledge?
  • What if what the learning profession really needs is original scholarship?
  • What if the resources, time and energy we devote to attending large professional conferences would be better spent in small-scale convenings, where the goals of scholarly productivity are foregrounded above all others?

These questions resonated with me, my friends/colleagues often ask if I will be attending an upcoming conference or event so we can meet up. As a professional with minimal funds for travel and also little interest in attending conferences during the academic term (I teach A LOT of learners during the two long semesters – Fall and Spring), many are surprised to hear I am not going to be at these events as I value professional learning. In the last few years, I have notices that I am not learning very much at conferences on site at these events. To clarify — I DO participate in valuable discussions, debates, and banter with peers at these events, but I’m not sure the format of a typical 2-3 day conference with keynotes, workshops, lecture presentations, academic papers/posters, etc. in a 2-3 day format is not how I WANT to learn.

Sure. I miss the connections and socialization within the profession at these conference events, but really, my learning and development is on-going and more tailored to what I need and want to learn about. These days, I think there are SO many ways to engage with professionals and gain the knowledge I am looking about — that I have not been interested in figuring out how to build a budget for one event. Sometimes I follow and read through a conference backchannel if I can’t physically attend; however, lately, I’m not sure I’m really missing out on anything. I think the biggest loss of not attending might not actually be the learning, but the networking and professional socialization that comes with the analog format of most conferences.  Also what is often lost in these large learning events, is the knowledge creation and sharing beyond a time, location, and date to a broader audience — that comes with “the common is a faith in the power of convening. And, in particular, a faith in the power of convening at scale” (Kim, 2019).

I think there are SO many ways professional to learn, develop, and gain knowledge in higher education. I typically find ways to learn from my peers and gain insights into my field through:

  • Books I borrow from the public & university library – I read A LOT!
  • Hashtags I search/follow/chat with on Twitter based on topics I’m interested in
  • Peers and colleagues work I follow — especially those who tweet, podcast, blog, and share in open access ways online
  • Journal articles and conference proceedings (ones that are publish)
  • PODCASTS! Like books, I listen to and learn from a wide variety of episodes, including the growing number of higher ed-focused podcasts, available on-demand, for download, and/or streaming. I guess I also create a couple to learn from as well e.g. @BreakDrink & @InVinoFab
  • LIVE/ARCHIVED web stuff: Webinars, web-events, broadcasts, YouTube live, Virtually Connecting sessions, etc.
  • Local events and happenings around DFW — at my campus, at other campuses, and general MeetUps or events. This even includes things posted on my local neighborhood network, NextDoor.
  • Subscriptions to learning, like this yearly membership I have to MasterClass.com
  • Open educational resources (OER) — e.g. MOOCs offered by FutureLearn, Coursera or edX and other OER repositories
  • Listservs and Google Groups — yeah, I still learn news, information, and find opportunities on these emailed spaces.
  • Library or research workshops at UNT Library like Software Carpentry for R and Python to tool up on a skills, platform, or research method.
  • Formal university courses. I take advantage of that staff/faculty discount at my own institution to take a non-degree course (I’m working on this certificate now).
  • Friends, colleague, and peer suggestions for learning and training — they just know I like learning, and what might peak my interest, in general. So I welcome referrals and suggestions for any of the above — and I get these often.

Beyond professional learning conferences, this sentiment also present with the work I do in the online teaching/learning domain. At our colleges and universities (at least in the US), there seems to be more value placed on the analog vs. the digital work we do on campus. If I am not physically “present” somewhere, how can the work I be doing the same as my colleague? What does a lecturer do who does not actually lecture? Good question, let me tease this out a bit as a couple of recent reads around digital minimalism and revenge of the analog has peaked these thoughts.

Over the past five years, as a full-time non-tenure track faculty member, I have been involved in a great deal of teaching/learning as a lecturer (who might not actually lecture). My work involves instructing face-to-face (F2F), online, and blended learning university courses and also designing learning/training on digital platforms AND within new physical teaching spaces. This has been fun, as I try to apply what I’m learning and discovering in my own research/learning (see list above) to re-tool how to best design these educational experiences digitally (like others who move to online teaching). That being said, when talking to some colleagues, I do notice the embedded bias for the “traditional” teaching methods (e.g. sage on the stage, chalk n’ talk, talking-head expert, etc.) for what it means to be present on a campus as a faculty or staff employee.

Looking back, I suppose most of my own experience as a learner involved F2F means of instruction, student support, and interactions. Before finishing my PhD, I had a number of F2F and blended courses I taught or had been enrolled in myself. Part of the assumption of online teaching comes with the culture on campus and the expectations of what an online course will entail for the learner. For F2F courses, I think there is less pressure to have your entire curriculum prepared, available, and online at the start of each semester. A professor or instructor can just show up and talk (on or off topic) based on what might be loosely included in the course syllabus or schedule that day, often without any concern for lecture capturing, archiving, and transcribing media (audio or video) of their presentation. As a F2F instructor who teaches on campus, there is no need to be explicit in detail for assignments, or itemization of instruction on projects, tasks, or activities for learning. Students attending these courses on site can ask immediate follow up questions before, during or after scheduled class time. Additionally, students feel a rapport or social presence with the in-class instructor that is different those educators they might have online (not always, but it often it is so). These interactions to learn with peers or through impromptu discussions in class, does not require a script, plan, or set outline of pedagogy when comparing it to the defined structures of an online course.  Then there are other F2F learning experiences when faculty stick to the scripted presentation/lecture with minimal interaction or engagement.

Since my faculty role has primarily involved designing and delivering online learning, I have been a fortunate to lecture and capture lessons on video/audio, augment how I offer student support in office hours, create useful learning materials beyond a textbook, create social presence for myself and learners in these courses, and be mindful of making my educational resources accessible in a variety of different formats considerations for multiple formats. This reflection of my teaching online is constant and helps me to improve how to make concepts and learning relevant for my students.

For learning, it does not have to be a THIS or THAT debate. When it comes to the digital or analog practices, I think there is value in both. Like making a mix tape of music or playing a vinyl record, I take the skills of searching, listening, finding, and curating my music on Spotify playlists digitally. I don’t think I could do one well without the other. The skills for learning design offline apply to how I think about my online curriculum. Both should exist — it’s not an either or when it comes to the analog and digital experience for learning. Our college/university campuses and our professional associations could use a healthy smattering of both. We need educators, administrators, instructional designers, and student support services that are versatile in both digital and analog practices. I think teaching online, over the past few years, better informs my pedagogical preparation and considerations for how I design and deliver learning. Whether it is an in-person conference workshop or an online week webinar, I think the pedagogical experiences help to merge my digital and analog practices. It’s marriage of both skills sets to reach a variety of ways to gain knowledge and learn.

We will never change how we create and share knowledge, or learn new ways to do things, unless we change our professional practices. The model of conference learning is fine to socialize and network with the select few who can afford to attend the conference; however, I would challenge the number of professional associations I am/have been a member of to think about how to BETTER share and TRULY scale knowledge in a manageable way, specifically:

  • How are these learning artifacts archived beyond the dates and locations of these events?
  • Are there ways to share knowledge and learning that we need to start modeling for professional learning, training, and development of our own?
  • How are professionals who do not attend engaged and encouraged to understand the value-add of these learning experience or resources shared from the in-person meetings?
  • What was can data be managed and learning objects be curated to organize what was shared, learned, and presented at these events?

I don’t have the answers to these, but I think this is worthy of further discussion and consideration. I know I would be willing to support and work with professional associations/organizations who would like to consider how to effectively organize their own digital libraries for learning, knowledge sharing, and advancement of the field. Let’s chat.

highered, Podcast, Research

The State of Higher Ed Podcasts in 2019

Over the last couple of years, I have been looking at the landscape of podcasting within higher education. Today podcast and audio listening now has 50% of the US ear (The Infinite Dial 2019 report), as we witness some exodus from social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.  With the options of audio streaming platforms and increased ownership of smart speakers, I was not surprised to see the increase in weekly audio online listening:

As someone who listens to, creates, hosts, and enjoy podcasts, I have been following how my college and university colleagues have been involved in developing their own podcasts for the past couple of years: https://higheredpodcasts.wordpress.com/ Thanks to iTunes U, universities found a way to share their audio and video lectures, lessons, and student-produced podcasts. Now, we have innovative colleagues willing to share about their scholarship, offer suggestions for teaching, and tell more about their own practice on campus. I have shared shared some of this research and training materials in a previous blog post: Pod Save Higher Ed: Resources for Podcasting.  Over the Spring Break, I completed a review and update of the podcasts my peers are making. There are a number of additions, updates and archives, especially as more higher ed professionals are finding accessible ways to create and stream their audio productions.

For the purpose of my research, I am investigating podcasts that share about the higher education professional (graduate students, staff, and faculty) experience. These specific types of podcasts may offer a new way to learn, offer professional development, share a story, and/or improve to our practice in teaching, research or service. My review is to look at the genres, topics, audiences, issues, and ideas being shared in the higher ed podcast land. Here is the list of podcasts I’ve curated and I am currently examining in 2019 [also shared http://bit.ly/higheredpodcasts]:

If you have a podcast I should include in this review of podcasts in 2019, please let me know! Here is how I am defining a “higher ed podcast” for the purpose of this study:

  • the podcast content is created and shared to support professional development, learning, and/or information distribution
  • the podcast has a target audience which might include graduate learners (e.g. masters or doctoral researchers), professional school students (e.g. social work, medicine, etc.), staff/administration, and/or faculty in higher education
  • the podcast is in an audio and/or video format that can be subscribed, downloaded, and/or streamed from an electronic device (e.g. computer, laptop, tablet, or mobile)
  • the podcast is a program, show, broadcast, and/or episodes with a specific purpose or topic focused on the higher education domain
  • the podcast includes original content development intention: it was designed for a podcast, e.g. recorded college/university lectures, conference panels/presentations, professional learning webinars, recorded meeting, etc. (unless it was edited to fit into a podcast)
  • the podcast can be active or archived (no production since 2017)
#AcDigID, #EdDigID, #HEdigID, Social Media, SocioTech

Networked Practice: My Book List

For some of my own research and review, I have been accumulating a variety of books to my reading list for the networked practice study. Some deal with living online, being connected, and even understanding how communities, networks, and groups thrive (or the opposite) in the digital. For the month of January, I have been taking stock and reflecting on my own networked practice. Recently I facilitated an online workshop to support higher education faculty and staff think more about their digital presence and how to manage their own reputations online. Now my current students are thinking about how they will craft their digital identity online and engage with industry leaders, future co-workers, and engage with professionals in their occupational fields. I have enjoyed having conversations to consider what online reputation means, examining how/where our personal data exists, and understanding that “being” online means so much more in 2019.

Creating, crafting, and/or presenting our professional best self digital is quite complicated and complex — just like the individuals behind the profile. As usual, I continue to think about my digital imprint and I have begun to audit where I “live” online. [This process is taking a while, so I’ll share about this audit and review in another post when I am closer to wrapping it up.] as I start to audit my own life on social media platforms and other digital accounts. Of course, I continue to read and review what others are thinking about this process — being networked, living digital, cyber reputations, and online personas — who are connected and linked to peers and communities. Here are a few of the reads and resources I have recommended lately for higher education professionals (e.g. staff, graduate students, faculty, administrators, instructional designers, instructors, early career researchers, etc.):

Beyond this list, I am more than happy to share what I have “READ” and is accumulating on my “Networked Practice” reading list on GoodReads (some reviews included):

I suppose my attention is drawn to the ideas of self-presentation, reputation, and lived lives on social media platforms (and other digital spaces we don’t fully control). At the moment, I’m “CURRENTLY READING” the following books — thanks public and university library!:

My “WANT TO READ” book list is never short, but here are a few that I have either sitting on my home shelf to read (literally) around networked practices. I have no doubt I will add (or have added) to this list, especially as I hope to read these in February.  I welcome your recommendations for living a networked life, being a connected scholar, and being involved digital communities of practice:

What are you reading these days around networked practice? Do you have recommendations for those of us who live a networked, connected professional life? This could be about online personas, digital reputation, networked groups/communities, impacts of social media at work, and more. Share any recommendations you have, and if you’re GoodReads — be sure to connect with me, so I too can be inspired by the books you’re reading.

#HEdigID

#HEdigID Chat No. 10: Motivations for Using Social Media with @hapsci

Remember back in 2008 (or before), when your colleagues may have said social media is “just a fad” and it’s probably not something we shouldn’t really concern ourselves with in higher education? We know that THIS is not the case. This social, digital medium has flourished and spread to touch all aspects of our lives on and off campus. Maybe you signed up for an account on Facebook to stay in touch with college/university friends. You might regularly search for D.I.Y. and “how to” videos on YouTube (or post your own) to learn how to do something. Or perhaps you joined Twitter to follow a conference hashtag and stay in touch with the backchannel conversation. Finally, you may be capturing and sharing more photos with your smartphone to post these on Snapchat and/or Instagram to stay in touch with loved ones. These are just the few of may ways we are all motivated to be active and use social media.

I know that our news and information streams mention social media platforms. I can’t recall a day where I haven’t read, heard, or seen social media discussed in the news or been the primary information source delivering the news. Finally, there has been an increased amount of news ABOUT social media on issues such as privacy, personal data collection, politics, and more. Social media is a daily presence at our finger tips, screens, and in our conversations (offline and online). This was not the case just over a decade ago.

Most of us are using social media each and every day — but have you ever stopped to think — WHY??? What first motivated you to sign up for any social media account? What keeps you logging into your account to scroll, read, post, comment, share, and more online? And how are you currently using social media in your personal AND professional life? These are just a few of the many questions I have about motivations for using media in a social way. And, I know (thankfully) I am not alone in this inquiry. There are a growing number of colleagues who are curious about how social media connects us and what encourages us to log on and participate in these social platforms.

I’m excited to welcome guest moderator (MOD), Dr. Heather Doran (a.k.a. @hapsci), who will be facilitating the next all-day Higher Education Digital Identity (#HEdigID) chat this FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 9th to discuss this #HEdigID Chat TOPIC “Motivations for Using Social Media.”

Heather is a public engagement manager and who is interested in how the public can connect with research and researchers through social media. Dr. Doran has been active on Twitter and a frequent blogger since 2009. In 2015 she was awarded a travel fellowship from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust to explore how scientists and the public can connect on social media. For this Heather visited the USA, Canada, China and Japan. You can read what she got up to at www.heatherdoran.net or https://www.wcmt.org.uk/users/heatherdoran2015

Dr. Doran is interested in chatting about the different reasons why people in higher education use social media. For personal reasons? For part of your job? Let’s discuss how your motivations for using social media impacts and influences you professionally and personally in your daily life. To prepare for this conversation around open ed practices, here is a bit more information to review before the upcoming #HEdigID Chat:

#HEdigID Chat TOPIC: Motivations for Using Social Media

This SLOW chat can be found on Twitter with the hashtag starting on FRIDAY, November 9th (which might be November 8th in other global time zones) with the hashtag #HEdigID. Also, feel free to  start sharing your answers NOW within this OPEN Google doc: http://bit.ly/hedigid10

To get you thinking ahead, here are a few of the QUESTIONS you will see appear on Twitter and in an open Google doc for the FRIDAY (November 9th) #HEdigID ALL-DAY discussion:

  1. Why (and maybe when) did you start using social media?
  2. What motivates you as someone in higher ed to continue to use social media professionally for the work you do?
  3. What do you find most difficult about using social media these days?
  4. Has using social media as a professional in #highered met your expectations? Why or why not?
  5. What do you find social media most useful for in your role in higher education?
  6. What was the most insightful piece of advice or tip someone offered you (or you gave) for getting started with social media?

Join the discussion and share your motivations for using social media by:

  • Answering the questions by tweeting your response with the hashtag: #HEdigID

  • Responding anonymously in IN this OPEN Google Doc: http://bit.ly/hedigid10

  • Use any of these questions to draft your own personal reflection and response (e.g. blog post, video, audio, drawing or offline discussion)

 

UPDATE WITH TRANSCRIPT 11.12.18:

Podcast, Professional Development, Training & Development

Pod Save Higher Ed: Resources For Podcasting

This month, I have found myself sharing more and more about how we can think about social, digital tools to tell our stories in higher ed. There are many ways to share our experiences and highlight the amazing things students, staff, and faculty are working on at and beyond our institutions. I have found podcast hosting/producing to be a very rewarding experience to support my own learning and development. There is no shortage of knowledge I have not learned from podcast guests, the research of topics, and the notes for each episode  I have hosted – thanks @BreakDrink & #InVinoFab podcast!

Digital storytelling has the potential to cultivate agile learning and kick start creativity in our college/university pedagogical practices and research projects. With a growing population tuning into podcasts (at least 44% have listened to a podcast, and 26% are monthly listeners in the US in 2018), this storytelling medium is on the rise. Podcast creation and listening has increased for a variety of reasons: access and portability to listen on a variety of devices, a way to fill the daily/work commute, the growth of smart speakers, and the increasing mention of new and interesting fiction and nonfiction series that have reinvigorated podcast listening (thanks, Serial, Season 1).

Podcasts offer both information and entertainment outlets for listeners to tune in anywhere, anytime they want. This on-demand, audio content allows the media to be streamed or downloaded, and offers listeners a way to participate in the slow web movement.  Instead of a quick like, comment, or post we typically experience on social media or online, podcasts provide a longer form, intimate experience and connection with the hosts and ideas shared. This longer media format often offers deeper insights, showcases personality and personal styles, and helps to interpret current projects and experiences from this audio narrative. With a wide variety of creative formats (e.g. interviews, commentary, panels, storytelling, etc.), podcast episodes can vary in time, style, and approach. The audio medium of the podcast lets you decide the frequency, distribution, and how you will produce the topic. Additionally, you can include resources for listeners to access further information through episode details, resources, show notes, and transcripts.

I think MORE of my college and university colleagues should consider exploring podcast creation to share personal stories, thoughts, and reflections on the work we do. For higher ed, the podcast medium allows for hosts/producers to extend knowledge to a campus community, academic discipline, and practitioners who want to engage deeply on specific topics, ideas, trends, and/or issues. To plant the podcast production seed, I thought I’d share a few podcast planning/development resources I’ve been curating from a recent workshop I facilitated, called Pod Save Higher Ed. Here is the podcast planning and brainstorm resource guide to be downloaded (as a PDF file) shared under a Creative Commons license:

https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.7228223.v1

I wish I had a quick “how to,” accessible guide to for higher ed podcast hosting and producing when I first started in 2010 (as Jeff and I lamented about in a past BreakDrink episode). This is a quick OVERVIEW of useful curated podcast resources, tools, tutorials, and suggestions I hope will help you if you are currently podcasting and/or considering to start your own podcast:

http://bit.ly/podsavehighered

There are SO many ways to produce a podcast these days. This open document is a space to SHARE and LEARN about HOW higher education professionals create, make, produce, and host their own podcasts:

http://bit.ly/behindthepodcast

Take a LISTEN to podcasts for and created by higher education professionals who want to share resources, ideas, and aspects about their own work:

http://bit.ly/higheredpodcasts

The time for higher ed professionals, practitioners, graduate students, researchers, instructors, administrators, and more to gain a share of the podcast ear. Higher ed hosts and producers, it’s time to raise our mics and let our tales be told through podcasts. Go ahead and launch the podcast you have always dreamed of creating now! I hope to listen to your pod story soon, @LauraPasquini

p.s. Be sure to share your podcasting story and let others know how/why you started your own podcasts OR how podcasts help you in your professional life in higher ed: #PodSaveHigherEd

Reference:

Pasquini, L. A. (2018). Pod Save Higher Ed: A Resource Guide To Inspire Storytelling & Podcast Making in Higher Education. figshare. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.7228223.v1 and http://bit.ly/podsavehighered

#HEdigID

#HEdigID Chat No. 7: Managing Digital Overload & Stress

It’s August, which means the start of Fall college/university semester is just around the corner. I’m not entirely sure if I am ready for summer to be over; however, I do know that one of my own goals before school begins was to make sure my digital life was in order and ready. Fortunately, the August Higher Ed Digital Identity (#HEdigID) Chat welcomes Paul Eaton (@profpeaton) as the guest moderator (MOD) for Friday’s (8/10) #HEdigID chat slow, all-day Twitter chat. Thanks to all who participated in the discussion last month. There was an active conversation over a few days for the #HEDigID no. 6 on Open Ed Practices in July, and a thoughtful and kind reflection from contributors/lurkers.

To reflect on our digital lives, Paul has prepared questions and prompts to encourage us to think about how to better manage our networked practices before it manages us. Here is more about the August #HEdigID chat topic, Managing Digital Overload & Stress:

Digital tools, platforms, applications, and hardware are often heralded for their ability to connect professionals, openly share resources and knowledge, and build communities of practice across geographic spaces.

Digital tools and social media spaces have ushered in new stressors for professionals in higher education.” ~ Paul Eaton

Some of these we know about anecdotally – the fear of missing out, the hidden expectation of constant connectivity, comparative stress such as imposter syndrome, or stress from online conflict. Other stresses of the digital age we may be less cognizant of – for example, bodily stress induced by consistent eye strain, sitting or typing on digital devices. There may even be good stress, as in the recent article from Meier (2018) on how the comparison can drive us to perform better.  The purpose of this month’s #HEdigID chat will be to examine the many ways digital tools, spaces, and places, contribute to stress in our lives (both good and bad), and how can we manage that stress effectively as professionals.

Reference:

Meier, A., & Schafer, S. (2018). The positive side of social comparison on social network sites: How envy can drive inspiration on Instagram. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 21(7). https://doi.org/10.1089/cyber.2017.0708

#HEdigID CHAT TOPIC: Managing Digital Overload & Stress

The next Higher Ed Digital Identity SLOW chat will be on Twitter with the hashtag: #HEdigID and within this OPEN Google doc: http://bit.ly/HEdigid7

Learn more about the #HEdigID Chat and review the QUESTIONS in that will be posted on Twitter and in the Google doc the next discussion on FRIDAY (August 10th):

  1. Today we are talking about Managing Digital Overload and Stress. Tell us who you are, what you do, and what brings you to the discussion?
  2. This is a big topic. What are some issues, questions, and concerns you would like to address around the topic of “Managing Digital Overload and Stress”?
  3. How do you define digital overload? In what ways does a digital overload manifest in your professional and/or personal life?
  4. How do you define digital stress? What are some ways or symptoms you feel that technologies and your online life impact your stress levels?
  5. Not all digital stress is bad – so how does being connected and online motivate the work you do in #highered?
  6. Let’s talk about managing your digital life and work. What are some strategies and practices have you implemented to deal with digital overload and stress?
  7. Let’s talk about tools for your digital life and work. What are some tools or resources you use to manage your digital life?

Join the discussion on managing your digital life by:

  • Tweeting your response with the hashtag: #HEdigID

  • Responding directly IN this Google Doc: http://bit.ly/HEdigid7 {the “HE” is capitalized}

  • Use these questions to draft your own personal reflection and response (e.g. blog post, video, audio, drawing or offline discussion)

Update: Transcripts from the #HEdigID chat from August 8th are HERE

#AcDigID, #EdDigID, #HEdigID

Being a Higher Ed Professional Online (#HEdigID) Is Complicated: Join the Conversation?

A growing number of practitioners, professionals, and administrators in higher education engage and share their professional practice in digital spaces. There is no surprise that these educators are social, networked, and keen to learn from one another online. These non-traditional spaces offer ways to share resources, access professional development, and learn from other professionals beyond their institution or even functional area of work.  Other higher ed professionals also seek out spaces for personal support, issues on campus, and communities that connect to their social identities, values, and/or beliefs.

This week I’m facilitating the Online Learning Consortium online workshop: Developing Your Social Media and Digital Presence for Higher Ed Professionals (#HEdigID). This 7-day, workshop was originally created to help faculty and staff in higher education craft an online presence; however, there are more issues about “being” online in today’s digital network. The goal was to introduce digital and social ways to connect, learn, and present yourself and work in online spaces. With the shift and scale of a number of social networks and online platforms, I’m not so sure everyone needs to be everywhere online. Some might need an academic persona … whereas other college/university staff may not or might be struggling with their digital, professional lives. Being a higher ed professional online is quite complicated. Asking and learning about professionals digital selves unpacks the complexity of living our individual networked experiences. Being a digital professional might differ based on the culture of the institution, support (or lack there of) from peers and/or a supervisor, ability to participate (or not) based on geographic location, and the social identities that travel with professionals via online platforms. The decision to “be” a professional online is not a simple or straightforward “how to” guide. And, I think it’s something that often gets overlooked or not really talked about it among higher ed faculty and staff — so let’s change that. Let’s talk about it!

Learning Objectives

  • Evaluate social media and digital platforms for professional development and connected learning.
  • Establish effective strategies for developing an online digital identity within the open, networked higher ed community online.
  • Outline the benefits and challenges of open and digital practice in higher education, specifically with regards to social media and other networked platforms.

Workshop Schedule

This is an asynchronous, week-long online workshop which will begin on a Monday (May 14th) and end on the following Sunday (May 20th). If you want a look at the #HEdigID workshop agenda, here is the outline for short-course:

  • Why Does Social & Digital Identity Matter in Higher Ed?
    • Getting started, digital identity development, and state of postsecondary practitioners and administrators online
  • The Tools of the Digital Professional Trade: Social Media
    • Twitter, hashtags, blogging, podcasting, LinkedIn, and more for creating and sharing online.
  • Being a Connected and Digital Practitioner
    • Digital research impact and influence: Slack, websites, YouTube Live, ORCID iD, ResearchGate, etc.
  • Openness in Academia: Benefits & Challenges
    • Working “in the open” and the tension between benefits & challenges of digitally engaging.
  • Building Your Social and Digital Presence Online
    • Creating your own space and place for your professional work and sharing among practitioners.
  • Developing Your Digital Academic Identity
    • Bonus: Ways to aggregate and showcase your digital, professional self and the work you’re doing on campus.

Dates Offered: May 14-20, 2018; Registration Page (to sign up)

Join the Conversation?

If you can join us in the actual course — great! If you are not able to commit to this short course — but you’re interested in this TOPIC and DISCUSSION, here are a few ways you can engage in the Higher Ed Digital Identity (#hedigid) Workshop this week:

  • ADD TO THE TWITTER LIST: Are you on the“Academics Who Tweet” Twitter list? I would like to get a variety of folks from academia from all disciplines and functional work areas in higher education. Let me know (comments or directly on Twitter) if YOU or someone else should be added.
  • USE the #HEdigID Workshop HASHTAG this week to introduce yourself, say hello, share resources, or offer advice. I am encouraging learners to follow, read, and use this same hashtag during the week of May 14-20, 2018.
  • PARTICIPATE & TWEET during the #HEdigID Twitter Chat: Join us for the Twitter chat on Friday, May 18th for the ALL DAY conversation. Using the workshop hashtag, #HEdigID, I will moderate a chat over the course of the day to dig into the questions, challenges, and ideas/suggestions for being a networked professionals. I will be posting the questions and reminding y’all about the chat in a couple of days BEFORE Friday. Learn more about the #HEdigID chat here and how YOU can sign up to moderate a future conversations online: https://techknowtools.com/twitter-chats/hedigid/
  • TELL YOUR #HEdigID STORY: Interested in joining an online, synchronous conversation to share about your own #HEdigID experience? Want to tell a story about how being a networked scholar/practitioner impacts your work in higher ed?  Want to tell the workshop participants about a connected community you are a part of in these networked spaces? Let me know – happy to have you join during our #HEdigID Online, Synchronous Meeting this FRIDAY, May 18, 2018 from 12-12:40 pm EST. [Drop me a DM on Twitter: @laurapasquini or a comment]

Being online and living in the network impacts our personal and professional lives. What it was to be connected or sharing in the network looks and feels much different in 2018. What does it mean to be a networked professional now to you? How has your participation changed, shifted, or grown in these social networks? What questions or considerations are you making about your online self to preserve your digital identity? Join the conversation to reflect and discuss what it means to be a higher ed professional in digitally connected spaces.