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Fostering Virtual Collaboration Between First-Year Students and Seniors in English Courses

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Zedeck, M. & Balkun, M. (2011, January). Fostering Virtual Collaboration Between First-Year Students and Seniors in English Courses. Presented at the Educause Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference, …

Zedeck, M. & Balkun, M. (2011, January). Fostering Virtual Collaboration Between First-Year Students and Seniors in English Courses. Presented at the Educause Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference, Baltimore, MD.

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  • 1. Fostering Virtual Collaboration Between First-Year Students and Seniors in English Courses2011 Mid-Atlantic Regional ConferenceJanuary 13, 2011
    Dr. Mary Balkun
    Mary Zedeck
    Seton Hall University
  • 2. Project Overview
    History
    Where we were
    Goal – Spring 2010
    Foster collaboration between first-year writing classes and senior seminar students (English majors)
    Continue to explore potential of Second Life for teaching and learning
    Result
    Unanticipated multiple layers of collaboration
    Interactive virtual learning space: The Poe Crawl
  • 3. The Challenges
    Collaboration in English classes is not common practice
    Students in one class, course to course, university to university
    • Applying critical theory/material culture
    Second Life and similar tools
    Course specific
    Student use is often limited to course work
    Generate further interest in SL for teaching and learning at SHU
  • 4. The Layers
  • 5. Layers 1 and 2 - Planning
    Layer 1 - Faculty to ID
    Dr. Mary Balkun – Senior Seminar
    Mary Zedeck – Instructional Designer
    Layer 2 - Faculty to Faculty + ID
    Dr. Mary Balkun – Senior Seminar (SS)
    Melinda Papaccio – College English II (CEII)
    Mary Zedeck – Instructional Designer
  • 6. Layer 3 – Faculty to Students
    Layer 3a – Faculty to Senior Seminar Students
    Introduction to and training in SL
    Organized course to course partnerships
    Layer 3b – Faculty to College English II Students
    Overview and demonstration of SL
    Students write about SL experience and suggestions for SL project build as part of research paper proposal
    Papers sent to Senior Seminar students for feedback
  • 7. Layer 4 – Students to Students
    CEII send paper proposals to SS Students
    SS students peer review of CEII student paper proposals
    Suggest idea for their research on Poe
    Comment on student ideas for Poe SL build
    Send papers back to College EnglishII students
  • 8. Layer 5 – Senior Seminar
    Senior Seminar SL Project Development
    Group share of CEII ideas
    Develop project ideas based on CEII suggestions
    Students organized into teams based on project interest
  • 9. Layer 6 - Evaluation
    Layer 6a – Closing the Loop
    CEII faculty demonstration ofSS class final Poe Crawl build in SL
    Layer 6b – Assessment
    Senior Seminar student in-class presentations of SL projects
    Review CEII evaluation
  • 10. The Poe Crawl
    SL Poe Projects – Spring 2010
    The Black Cat
    Usher in the Madness
    Premature Burial
    Mirroring
    Alcoholism
    There Are No Accidents
  • 11. Results
    All layers of collaboration had positive results
    Faculty-Instructional Designer
    Faculty-Faculty
    Faculty-Students
    Course-Course (SS and CEII)
    Student-Student (SS)
    Real-world audience
    Enhanced team skills
    Project-based teaching and learning
    Broader exposure to SL
  • 12. College English II Evaluation
    “Regarding the add-ons to the Seven Gableshouse, I like all of the stories and podcasts pertaining to Poe. It makes learning about what would usually be a monotonous subject more of a fun experience.”
  • 13. CEII Evaluation
    “I think that the Second Life build is great… With your avatar you can tour the Seton Hall Island and learn a lot of things about most early gothic writings. I think that the build helps the reader understand and grasp a clearer idea of the stories they may read. I like the gothic setting as well as the sound effects. The graphics were pretty cool. Overall, I think the students did a great job with this Second Life build. “
    “I think that the Second Life build is great… With your avatar you can tour the Seton Hall Island and learn a lot of things about most early gothic writings. I think that the build helps the reader understand and grasp a clearer idea of the stories they may read. I like the gothic setting as well as the sound effects. The graphics were pretty cool. Overall, I think the students did a great job with this Second Life build. “
  • 14. CEII Evaluation
    “We liked the interactiveness of the graveyard.  The atmosphere of the graveyard was put together very well especially with the addition of the changing colors of the fog.  We thought that the podcasts were pretty cool but having to click on different links seemed to be a hassle.  It takes too much time to go to outside links so we believe they should all be within Second Life.  Also, we thought that there was too much reading in the notecards.”
  • 15. Senior Seminar Evaluation
    Do you believe doing textual analysis through the Second Life project was useful for learning about the text(s)/your topic? Please explain your response.
    “Yes, Second Life provided a new environment for exposure to the primary text as well as the ability to experience the text in an environment that contributes to the overall effect.”
  • 16. SS Evaluation
    What preconceived notions about doing a class project did you have prior to class? Have they changed at all and if so, how?
    “Class projects are generally boring, have an unevenly distributed workload, and generally have no impact after they are handed in. This was a dynamic project that was completed quite fairly, and will be around long after the close of class.”
  • 17. SS Evaluation
    Other comments:
    “I believe working within Second Life as we did in Women and Lit in the Spring 2009 helped to learn the way in with SL is meant to be used better than the way in which we used this semester. However, I do understand time constraints. I believe that the 1202 class could have betterplanned their part of Second Life so we could have done the work in a timely manner and could all have been involved in every aspect of the project.”
  • 18. Future Plans – Spring 2011
    Repeat SL collaboration between CEII and English majors
    Different author or theme?
    Early American Grotesque and CEII
    To achieve deeper collaboration between students and courses
    One CEII class instead of three
    Commence project earlier in the semester
    CEII students to be actively involved in SL
    In addition to prior collaboration, SS to peer review CEII research papers and provide feedback in SL
  • 19. Q&A
    Dr. Mary Balkun
    mary.balkun@shu.edu
    Mary Zedeck
    mary.zedeck@shu.edu
    Seton Hall Pirate Island – House of 7 SLURL:
    http://slurl.com/secondlife/Seton%20Hall/163/186/30/