This blog is an educational / pedagogical experiment … The blog and it’s “offspring” (lacblue, lacgreen, lacorange, lacpurple, lacred) constitute a collaborative learning effort for the students in one section of “Introduction to Communication and Culture” at Indiana University.
This blog and the five sub-blogs, where teams of students will post their thoughts and reactions, is a form of collaborative learning. This course is not a class that asks students to memorize definitions and concepts only to repeat and regurgitate those ideas on exams and papers. Instead, the course asks students to work together to construct knowledge and understanding of the material. When we have more more opportunities to talk about, to investigate, and to apply concepts, definitions, and ideas, we will develop a firmer grasp on the material.
In the past, many students have said by the end of a semester, “I see these course ideas everywhere, everyday and I’m always bringing up these ideas around friends or family, but they look at me like I’m crazy.” This blog should not stop you from sharing your knowledge and ideas with others; however, it also provides an outlet where you will talk about those connections with others who are studying the same ideas.
In addition, the course blogs should not prevent discussion and participation in class … ideally they will enhance the discussions. However, the blog outlet also provides an outlet for those of us who like to think about ideas a little longer before we jump into a discussion.
I will use this “instructor” blog to post reflections on specific readings, course concepts and definitions. I may preview or wrap-up various lectures as thoughts continue to come to me about topics our class discussed. I hope to provide some tips and suggestions for assignments and course success. But most importantly, I hope to work with the class to understand the impact and implication of different ways of thinking about communication and I hope to model ways to identify and apply the course concepts in everyday life.
I trust you will find this experience valuable, educational, and meaningful. I look forward to meeting everyone at our first session.