Monday, December 17, 2012

More Reflections

Even though the term is "officially" over for CMC11 students taking the class for credit, the things I've learned in this experience / space will stay with me through out my life, in all aspects especially in how I approach and solve problems in regard to work and my education. During the break between terms, I hope to return to work full time with a new sense of creative problem solving that will make work more enjoyable and challenging for me. I hope I can reflect on this through out the break as well.

As far as my education, next spring will be my final term. As an Art major, it has been invaluable to learn about the different types of learning and how the beneficial the creative process, and creativity in general is. I loved the idea that you can learn to be creative. It was one of my favorite topics in the course and again one I will reflect on for a long time.

As far as the experience this term, I felt like by the end of the term I had just begun to learn my place and learning style in the MOOC. Collaborating with Brandy on our final assignment taught me so much about content curation and the different ways of finding information on the website. I was shown great resources and websites that I otherwise might have never found on my own.

The resources given in the outline of this class seem to be just the beginning in terms of guiding the students on their path to creativity, connectivism, and communication. In the end, I wish I had known more ways of expressing my opinions rather than the blogs and the occassional discussions. I think the Facebook Group for CMC11 is a great place to hold discussions and I hope students and facilitators both encourage the people registered in the class to participate and share on that group page.

Thats all I can think of for now, off to write way too many more papers before the end of the official ESC term.


Saturday, December 15, 2012

Final Reflections

Richele Young
Creativity & Multi-Cultural Communication
FA12: Final Course Reflections

When I first started this course and started exploring the land of MOOC – massive online open course, I immediately began looking for some structure and guidelines in regard to what I was supposed to do in this type of learning environment, as I had never taken a class like this before. I’ve learned that in this type of learning environment, the concept of connectivism is imperative. Connectivism is being able to communicate and share ideas effectively to other participants using many different outlets on the Internet, whether it is through discussions, blogs, or social networking.

Through my final presentation, I have learned about an aspect of a personal learning environment, and that is content curation. In my presentation, I went through different categories of how content curation relates to connectivism in that it allows users to connect and network based on similar interests. Through this presentation, I discovered the and that is a website that I will continue to use through out my education and beyond. I will also always stay connected with Facebook as another outlet of connectivism because I feel it will continue to be a long lasting channel for people to connect and communicate.

In the beginning of the semester, I installed the diigo tool in toolbar of my web browser and had just started to understand the concept of collecting and bookmarking data online. I did not pay attention to the dates of the articles or postings I had found. As I will continue to “lurk” in the CMC experiment, I will also keep my diigo more current since I now know how to use the scoop it tool.

In terms of my blog, I believe I showed progression in my actual experience of exploring and continuing to understand all of the seemingly never ending ideas that come out of, and come from, the MOOC. Blog postings for business or networking purposes are a great idea to allow authors to explain and display their ideas while giving other’s the options to comment and collaborate. Although many blog sites are changing and evolving, with some even fading, I think blogs will always be an important tool, especially the ones that allow for more interactivity and networking to be made possible and user-friendly for its users.

Lastly and most importantly, my experience in the MOOC has completely opened my eyes to a new way of learning. Being taken away from the linear learning path after so many years and being thrown into this wide open place where you are free to explore has definitely impacted my creativity and approach to problem solving. I’ve not only learned about so many different learning tools that make finding information easier, but I’ve learned about the importance of connectivism and how much that affects my creativity. I am excited to continue to lurk in the course and go back to the sections on creativity because they were the most interesting to me. I feel like I’ve been enlightened in so many ways and actually feel surprised that such a different way of learning existed without my knowledge at all. I will continue to use this class as guide in the way I collect and explore all the information I gather on my educational and life long learning journey.

Thank you Carol for this opportunity!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Hmm... more creative thinking

My definition of creativity is using your brain to think of all different aspects of something (a problem, a question, a painting, anything) and going beyond what knowledge you already have to figure out the best way to answer or solve that something. Like in the videos from Buffalo state, the narrator said there are two levels of creativity; big c creativity which affects people on a societal level and little c creativity which affects people in their every day choices and lives. He even said making dinner was an example of creativity. This stood out to me because it's so true. I hate cooking, baking, preparing food... anything with food bores me so I instead of complaining about it and living off ramen noodles, I should find creative solutions to making cooking more fun! Anyway, I do think I am a pretty creative individual. I enjoy the process of creating something and I also liked the quote that said something like it is much easier to tame a wild idea than it is to make a boring one interesting... something like that. I think I'm creative in a lot of aspects of my life and usually consciously but sometimes not. I like to change my personal style, rearrange my furniture, anything little to keep things changing and different.

I used to think that a person had to be artistic to be creative but it's definitely the other way around. I think I am pretty artistic but if my imagination or creativity is blocked, my talent is wasted. I've never really thought about the concept of creativity being learned but I definitely think it can be, it's just kind of a new idea because I've been on such a linear learning path, creativity hasn't been a big enough part of my journey. I already feel like creativity can be learned even just by being in this new learning environment. If someone has an open mind I think creativity can be learned and very beneficial.

I know HOW to use deliberate creative problem solving as a process but how successfully is another question. I'm working on it. Lastly, creativity absolutely fits with connectivism and transliteracy. It takes a creative open mind to reap the benefits of both of all of these new concepts.

Creativity in Learning & Life

 This week was all about creativity. I watched most of the youtube videos from the Buffalo State website but I'll admit I'm a little behind this week / last week. I thought I'd write a quick blog just after watching the videos as a reflection of what I thought was interesting and why. Yeah, another boring reflection... but in one of the videos about creative thinking there was one about the dynamic balance between divergent and convergent thinking. While I am thinking about the topic I thought I'd use the divergent thinking part right now, to relay all the information I gathered from the videos and then I'll come back later and use that convergent side, to really think about what was important and what I took away from those videos.

So I learned one of many definitions of creativity is "often described as the production of original ideas that are valuable or useful." I also learned about the 2 different levels of creativity; the big c and the little c creativity and lastly the 4 themes of creativity which are product, process, press, and person. I watched the videos on these "4 P's" and I could restate everything that was said in the videos because it was definitely all interesting and made me think... but the "P" I focused on most was the person. It's crazy that the concept creativity can be learned is something new but I know when I was growing up people would say "Oh they were born with X talent" or "Oh Y is in their DNA". It was also interesting to hear that creativity sometimes lead people to think that creative people are always weird people. I thought that was kind of funny... maybe because I like being weird. Well, that's all I got for now. I wish I would've spent more time on these topics but moving on to week 6! If anyone has any comments on anything else about creativity that's worth reading / watching, let me know!

Oh, I also found this website when I googled "Puccio & Murdock," it's a pretty good article:

Creative Leadership

Saturday, October 6, 2012


I'm confused about the digital divide. I'm not sure if I'm thinking way too much about this and the answer is so simple, or if I just don't know. I feel that way a lot lately. Anyway, I'm learning that transliteracy is being literate in different subjects and digital media and being able to combine them all to be able to communicate with others and get your ideas and points across clearly. That is what I've learned about transliteracy so far that I can understand. I read the article about implementing transliteracy into libraries and the discussions about the different librarians and what they think of the subject. It was interesting to note that a lot of the librarians didn't know what the definition of transliteracy was or had never even heard the term before, but they could make a pretty accurate guess at it. I agree with this article that transliteracy should be used by librarians to help people in the library get the most out of the resources available there, especially the computer and whatever they need to access on there.

So... I'm guessing that the digital divide is the space between the digital world and the written one, the one most of us grew up with in elementary and grade school where most of what we learned was concrete and written in stone... or wait printed on paper... same thing kind of. So transcending this divide would mean, to me, coming to some middle ground, to be able to use both aspects of learning together to get the most out of learning and communicating.

Some of my favorite and longest lasting media & tools I use for transliteracy are, the internet, word programs, adobe programs, youtube, facebook, and now even twitter. The internet is obviously my biggest resource, I use google to "google" (search) for every and any question I have during the day or night. I have a lot of questions. Google is an engine that helps me specify my question and even sort of create my own answer, because there are so many different results for every search. Critically picking and choosing what information seems to fit into my world and in the context of my question is important for me, or anyone, in learning and understanding.

The most important platforms I use to communicate with people right now are Facebook, this blog, and twitter. I've been on Facebook for years now and it is an easy and user friendly way to connect with people because you can find your friends and just say hi, or you can join groups of interest and discuss commonalities among other people in the group, while also bringing up new ideas as well, just like in the CMC facebook group. The other platforms I use are this blog, sort of as a space for reflection and open discussion to the new things I'm learning each week. I feel that writing at the end of each weeks helps me put into perspective the information I've gone over and it helps even more when people give me different feedback or experiences on their weeks as well.

Lastly, I just started using twitter, I really haven't used it much. I feel like it's an easy way to share quick links, photos, or whatever else, with whoever you want by tagging it. I'm trying to get better about exploring this multicultural communication concept and find different ways to explain / learn about it myself. Youtube is an awesome website because it's visual and it helps me to look at a lot of reading, or text, in a different way. Although I think twitter is convenient, aside from this class, it's not something I'm really interested in learning... but maybe that's because I haven't really connected with people on it yet? We'll see.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Why am I just learning about this now?!

I am taking a few other courses through SUNY and this week it seems they all relate heavily to the concept of connectivism. I am reading a few books but two in particular specifically talk about the way education has been constructed and designed... and why it is not working. Both books talk about the importance of making connections in learning and working with people to create new ideas, about learning together vs learning individually. I feel like I've been living under a rock?!

One of the books I am reading is called Asking the Right Questions by M. Neil Brown and Stewart M. Keeley. The book is about independent learning and it talks about different learning styles. One of them is called the "sponge approach" which is what I did through out grade school. My teacher gave us a book and I accepted most of what they said and what I read in the books to be true. The other approach is called "panning for gold" ....pretty much another explanation for a MOOC! It's about being given information on certain subjects but actively engaging in the information you choose and questioning it and talking about it with other people to come to your own informed conclusions.

The book also talks about "the myth of the 'right' answer" and includes lots of information on how to "ask the right questions" and get involved in learning and share it with other people. It's a really good, easy read so far; I definitely recommend it.

The other book I'm reading is called Signs by Arthur Asa Berger. In chapter 25 of this book Berger discusses codes and social codes. He said that people want to resist being "programmed" and their choices about freedom and in terms of education, this also reminded me of a MOOC.  Berger says:

"When people talk about being programmed, then it is not so much that they resent having certain programs inflicted on them. What they want is a choice of programs or some kind of program that allows self-determination, freedom, choice, openness- a program that is not restrictive and does not intrude upon them. This may be an impossible dream, beyond the capacity of any of our computer designers or programmers, but it is an ideal that is very much in people's minds. Now it may be that some degree of randomness is a part of every program or can be designed into societies, so this dream of freedom and autonomy is more nearly aittainable. I do not know whether it is possible, or where the line between an open-ended nonintrusive program ends and chaos begins."

.....Pretty interesting text to think about!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Week 3 Wayfinding

I'm starting to get more comfortable with the layout of the MOOC. I like learning about all the new information each week and picking and choosing sort of what fits on the path I'm taking. I like the concept of wayfinding. I found some pretty cool videos on youtube that I posted on my twitter. I'm definitely a visual learner so that video made sense to me. I guess at this point the layout or lack there of makes more sense to me... but connecting to people and seeing what other people are doing is still a little bit of a challenge but then again its all new so I'm sure I'll get it in time.