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Beyond (the) Blackboard: Blogging as a Course Management System in the Foreign Language Classroom. Daniel R. Walker daniel.walker@colorado.edu University of Colorado at Boulder Conference of the South Central Association for Language Learning Technology 16 February 2008.

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beyond the blackboard blogging as a course management system in the foreign language classroom

Beyond (the) Blackboard: Blogging as a Course Management System in the Foreign Language Classroom

Daniel R. Walker

daniel.walker@colorado.edu

University of Colorado at Boulder

Conference of the South Central Association for Language Learning Technology

16 February 2008

advantages of traditional course management systems
Advantages of Traditional Course Management Systems
  • Organization
  • Standardization
    • Instructor familiarity
    • Student familiarity
  • Tools
  • Use of templates
  • Support
disadvantages of traditional course management systems
Disadvantages of Traditional Course Management Systems
  • Interface
  • Forces one to think in modules
  • Hierarchical menu structure
  • Compatibility issues
  • Students often dislike them
the decision to use blogger
The Decision to Use Blogger
  • Cost
  • Compatibility
  • Ease of Use
  • Customization
  • Appearance
  • Relationship with Google “family”
    • Google Calendar
    • Google Reader
    • YouTube
    • FeedBurner
two approaches to using blogs
Two Approaches to Using Blogs
  • Top-down blog
    • Information primarily goes from instructor to class
    • Internet & Society Course (Northwestern U)
  • Bottom-up blog
    • Information primarily goes from class to instructor
    • Info 204: Networks (Cornell U)
u of colorado spanish 2120
U of Colorado: Spanish 2120
  • Fourth-semester course
  • Eight-week summer class
  • Seventeen students
  • Hybrid approach
    • Fixed elements / right-hand side
    • Changing elements / left-hand side
fixed elements the basics
Fixed Elements: The Basics
  • Feedburner / RSS
  • Personal information
  • Email address
  • Office hours
fixed elements news
Fixed Elements: News
  • Authentic texts in the target language
  • Access to current events
  • Instructor controlled through Google Reader
  • Material used as content for extra-credit questions on quizzes
fixed elements administration
Fixed Elements: Administration
  • Easy access
    • Administrative documents
    • Essential webpages
  • Use of PDF documents
  • Integration with Webfiles
changing elements informational posts
Changing Elements: Informational Posts
  • Offer more information about material seen in class—all in the target language
  • Offer students links in order to stimulate further exploration
changing elements organization
Changing Elements: Organization
  • Labels
    • Created by poster
    • Posts may have multiple labels
    • Allow students to easily locate posts
  • Archives
    • Organized automatically by Blogger
    • Arranged by date
links
Links
  • Class Blog: Spanish 2120 (Summer 2007)
    • http://span2120.blogspot.com/
  • Blog Project Overview (“Language and Technology”)
    • https://webfiles.colorado.edu/walkerdr/www
  • Blogs as Course Management Systems (Google Notebook)
    • http://www.google.com/notebook/public/07209419910697440508/BDRCcIwoQ762Vo-gi