AcAdv, nacada, NACADA Tech, Social Media

The Global #AdvTech Discussion at #nacadaINTL … And Then Some #acadv

At the beginning of June, I was fortunate to participate in the first International NACADA Conference in the Netherlands. The conversations (#nacadaINTL – archived tweets!) and sharing of ideas on how to advise and support students is universal. A number of countries and institutions were represented, and surprising enough, many of us face similar institutional challenges for effective student development.

I was happy to return to Maastricht, where I studied as a student, to present social media research, moderate a technology in advising panel, and facilitate a workshop on communication strategies for advising students.

Q: What do @ 4 am when you cant sleep? A: Go on a Maastricht walkabout to see what you remember from grad school circa 2004.

I shared recent collaborative research on guiding social media from @tjoosten & @lindseyharness, and how our institutions rarely think about learning when it comes to policy. It was good to discuss challenges and ideas on how other campuses manage social media practices, and my faculty advisor will be happy to learn that I gave me some direction for my dissertation work. 🙂

Poster Session: Guiding #socialmedia at Our Institutions on by @tjoosten @lindseyharness & moi at #nacadaINTL #acadv #highered

In thinking about actual engagement, I discussed communication plans and ideas for reaching and teaching our students. I do not think that social media is the only solution; however this workshop discussed comprehensive communication planning.

Much of what we fail to do is think holistically about this at our institutions, and I am certain that advising units can lead the way and be a strong example on campus.

This workshop discussed ideas, examples, and practical strategies – here is the digital handout and the presentation:

Finally, I would like to thank the #AdvTech Panel (left to right), Richard Sober (from Teesside University,UK), Joel Shelton (from Zayed University, UAE), Nicolai Manie (University of Maastricht,  NL), Catherine Mann (University of Melbourne-AUS), George Steele (The Ohio University, USA), and Jennifer Joslin (University of Oregon, USA) for joining in the vast conversation about technology in advising. Interested in meeting the the panel? There’s an open, Google doc for that HERE.

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Although the assigned panel topic was technology in learning, much of the discussion dealt with managing institutional objectives, supporting learning outcomes, considering effective communication strategies, and workflow solutions to make advising practices shared and developmental. The first question posed to the group  was to set the tone and give the participants an understanding of how varied and fluid “technology” is for our advising experiences.

Question:

Answers:

Immersive, necessary, potentially useful, collaborative, student-centered, electric, difficult, powerful, accessibility & connected. {What is YOUR word?}

Much of the panel discussion and general conversations at the conference around technology really involved our shared experiences for our student needs. It was not really the WHAT or HOW, but rather the reasons WHY technology is utilized at each of our institutions.

Different practices and trends for technology in advising have emerged; however an agreement on costs, advising models, student demand, and resource issues were common topics. More advising units around the globe seem to be moving towards holistic needs that require system-wide, institutional technologies to track student success, encourage mobile learning, and identify administrative solutions to make advising workflow easier. Are all institutions doing this? No. Not many at all.

I look forward to continued discussions beyond #nacadaINTL as we dig into what lies ahead for advising and technology on a global scale, specifically:

  • How can we best determine technology needs and use for advising practice?
  • What technology in advising resources will be used or should be used if they were available?
  • How is your institution attempting to respond to these questions and challenges in higher education?

Let’s keep the conversation going #advtech …

PhD, Professional Development, Reflections, SocioTech

Finding a Research “Home” with #SocioTech at #iConf13

As a College of Information student, the learning technology department compliments a number of research areas emphasized within our iSchool and at the 2013 iConference. Andrew Miller (@findandrew), Leila Mills, Mark Evans and I proudly represented UNT as one of the 12 finalists for the Social Media Expo hosted by FUSE Labs of Microsoft Research at the iConference this year. After conducting our ethnographic study on the Denton Local Food System (LFS), we submitted a research paper, video, poster, and created an online space for the LFS community to share information, house knowledge and connect to local happenings within the community at FeedDenton.org.
#iConf13 Social Media Expo Finalists
  Social Media Expo poster @ 2013 iConference (#iConf13) with @findandrew

What I enjoyed most about attending the conference was the refreshing opportunities to engage about research methodology and conceptual frameworks that apply to my scholarly interests. It felt like I was coming “home” when talking shop with various academics and graduate students during the conference. The best part might have been the pre-conference session:  SocioTechnical Systems Research workshop (#CNFWSP2). This is where I was able to connect to other #sociotech researchers, and learn more about areas of inquiry coming out of the iSchools and various disciplines.

The pre-conference was a full day o’ fun that housed various speakers, discussions, and sharing of directions in socio-technical research, including

  • critical study and comparative study
  • considerations for multi-scale ethnographic research
  • artifacts that change communication in organizations
  • impacts of human and non-human delegation
  • shifts from visible to invisible networks (part of ANT)
  • organization as a constant communication
  • sustainable information practices
  • action-based research for informatic improvement
  • participation, community resilience, plurality, design

Later in the day, Steve Sawyer, conducted a master class to present various sociotechnical systems (STS) perspectives, which drew upon theories from Actor-Network to social construction. Everything is relational as new forms of social organization is occurring with new technical arrangements all around us. We talked about #sociotech in practice, specifically how to situate the phenomena (conceptual & empirical framing) and conceptualize sociotechnical systems (identify characteristics of the social, technical and interactions) by looking at this STS conceptual space mapping from Steve.

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This post is just the tip of the iceberg, as I have a number of notes, ideas, references, and research peers to turn to thanks to this workshop. I was not surprised to run into some of the #sociotech usual suspects in #iConf13 sessions such local communities, learning environments, or ethnographic studies of online communities. I appreciated the comments and dialogues brought to both the paper and notes sessions (I preferred the workshop space in the notes session better), and I am motivated to dig back into my own research and dissertation grind.

Want to read more about the 2013 iConference proceedings or connect to a few sociotechs? Here you go:

 

Reference:

Miller, A. J., Pasquini, L. A., Mills, L. A., & Evans, M. (2013). Towards a methodology of virtually augmenting a knowledge sharing community of practice: A case study of the local food system of Denton, Texas. iConference 2013 Proceedings (pp. 1095-1101). doi:10.9776/13527

#phdchat, PhD, Professional Development

Have Conferences, Will Travel

Apparently when it rains, it pours – for conference proposal acceptances, that is. Since this semester is light on course work, heavy on dissertation proposal research, and I have a amazingly supportive supervisor/department, I will be fortunate enough to be able to attend a few conferences this term.

Laura Pasquini Where is Shee

Here is the rundown for my tentative CONFERENCE travel schedule:

Dalton Institute 2013 http://studentvalues.fsu.edu/2013-Dalton-Institute
Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL  January 30-February 2nd   Follow: #dalton13 Invited Keynote: Student Development 2.0: Optimizing Social Media to Connect Your Campus

AHRD Conference http://www.ahrd.org/ 
Washington, DC   Feb 13-17, 2013
Abstract paper: “A Review of Theoretical Frameworks Explaining Formal Mentoring Relationships”; Thanks to my co-author Mariya Gavrilova-Aguilar who will be presenting

iConference 2013  http://www.iconference.ischools.org/iConference13/2013index/
@iSchools & UNT Host, Fort Worth, TX   February 12-15, 2013  Follow:#iconf13   Our #UNT Social Media Expo team (Andrew Miller, Leila Mills, Mark Evans & I) qualified for the grant from Microsoft Research FUSE Labs on our paper: “Towards a Methodology of Virtually Augmenting a Knowledge Sharing Community of Practice: A Case Study of the Local Food System of Denton, Texas”


South by Southwest (SXSW) Education Conference & Festival http://sxswedu.com/
Panel Discussion: Social Media in Higher Ed – where are we going? with @Bcroke, @tjoosten, & @bradpopiolek
Austin, TX  March 4-7, 2013  Follow: #sxswEDU

Emerging Technologies for Online Learning – Sloan C http://sloanconsortium.org/conference/2013/et4online/welcome
Las Vegas, NV   April 9-11, 2013   Follow: #et4online                               @et4online Conference Planning committee; graduate student instigator/encourager

 

Futures of Academic Publishing: UNT’s 4th Symposium on Open Access https://openaccess.unt.edu/symposium/2013

May 30-31, 2013   Dallas, TX


NACADA 2013 International Conference http://www.nacada.ksu.edu/Events-Programs/Events/International-Conference.aspx
Maastricht, Netherlands   June 5-7, 2013
Workshop: Communication 2.0 Plans: Effectively Engaging Students Online
*Possible poster and panel session involving the #AdvTech survey and Social Media in Higher Education research.*

10th Annual Sloan Consortium – Blended Learning Conference & Workshop http://sloanconsortium.org/conference/2013/blended/welcome 

Milwaukee, WI    July 8-9, 2013

Invited Workshop: Supporting Blended Learners’ Need to Develop Social and Connected Skills Through Digital Pedagogy

Let me know if you will be attending, presenting, or frequenting any of the above conferences. I expect to meet up with the usual [professional/scholarly] suspects I collaborate with, and I look forward to new colleague connections and learning during this conference season.