If you haven't yet, please introduce yourself by replying with a comment to this post. You can do that in any way you like, but here are some possible things to mention:

  • Your name
  • Your role(s) in adult basic skills education, and/or in other types of education
  • Your program and agency/organization/institution and state
  • Your interests in using technology -- what you would like to learn, what you would like to share with colleagues here
  • What you are hoping to get from being a member of this CoP

Thanks. We look forward to seeing your introduction.

David J. Rosen

Technology and Learning CoP Moderator

djrosen123@gmail.com

Comments (25)

Ellen Kersten's picture

Hello, I'm Ellen Kersten and have just started a new position as a Digital Health Literacy Project Coordinator at the City of Richmond Library in California. I am working on developing an online curriculum that will enable low-income adults to use the internet and other digital technologies to improve their individual, family, and community health and well-being. This project will also provide free laptops and wireless internet access to participants and is funded by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services. I recently graduated from UC Berkeley with a PhD in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management and have experience in the fields of geography, public health, population health, and urban planning. I look forward to learning more about tools to support online education, digital literacy, and health literacy. I have already enjoyed exploring some of the resources shared through this community and look forward to learning and sharing more in the future. 

David J. Rosen's picture

Hello Ellen,

I am guessing that you are part of the City of Richmond's LEAP program, working with some great people who have been working with digital literacy for some time. If so, I believe you have the Learner Web there and, if so, you may know that it has a well-developed BTOP-funded digital literacy curriculum, and lots of experience with using it. You may also know that that the Learner Web project at Portland State University in Oregon is developing an online health literacy curriculum for adult learners.  There was a COABE 2015 conference presentation about that last week. Let me know if you would like contact information for someone who can tell you about this.

Fortunately there are many health literacy experts in our field. Those who come to mind first include: health literacy researcher and practitioner, Andrew Pleasant; professional development specialists, Julie McKinney and Sabrina Kurtz-Rossi; teacher and professional development specialist, Kate Nonesuch; adult learner health literacy advocate, Archie Willard, and Greg Smith and his colleagues at the Florida Literacy Coalition; there are many more, some of whom are on the LINCS health literacy CoP, which I hope you have also joined. 

As you probably know, there are several intersecting sets of skills that learners in a digital health literacy project need: literacy and numeracy skills, digital literacy, and health information searching skills. There are also several good online resources for low-literate adults once they get comfortable with using websites, some of which, such as Healthy Roads Media, have audio files, and often in several languages.

A very useful free compendium of resources, from World Education, with a focus on U.S. materials is Family Health and Literacy  http://www.healthliteracy.worlded.org/docs/family/ 

You will find links to a digital literacy skills assessment, and several free digital literacy instruction sites on The Literacy List at http://home.comcast.net/~djrosen/newsome/litlist/complit.html

I learned the most important thing about health literacy many years ago from Archie Willard, who told me that when adults urgently need health care information for themselves, family members or friends they need good, understandable information, not education or training to get it. The urgency of a health situation may require that a health care team provide information in ways that the person can understand, regardless of whether or not s/he can read, use a computer or other digital device, or know how to judge the quality of information from the web. The time for health digital literacy is when it is not a health emergency, so that if there eventually is one, the person has the literacy, numeracy, digital literacy and technology, and comfort with web searching and "judging the source" skills to find -- and evaluate -- the information needed. 

Let me know if you need contact information for the people whom I have suggested.  

Anyone, what have I missed that might be helpful to Ellen?

David J. Rosen

Technology and Learning CoP Moderator

djrosen123@gmail.com

Ellen Kersten's picture

Hello David,

Thank you for your detailed response! I am indeed part of the LEAP program, and we are building off of the successful BTOP-funded digital literacy curriculum to develop a Digital Health Literacy curriculum using LearnerWeb. We are working with the Minnesota Literacy Council to develop the curriculum in the LearnerWeb environment. I have been in touch with Jill Castek at Portland State about her center's great work developing a LearnerWeb curriculum to teach patients how to use an e-health portal (which I understand she presented on at COABE). I am in the process of meeting with local collaborators (city agencies, CBOs, and health clinics) to get their input on the learning objectives and local resources. I will certainly post details as we develop our plan. 

I really appreciate your detailed overview of the digital health literacy field and all of the helpful resources. I am grateful to be part of such an impressive network of experts! I look forward to continuing the discussion.

Thank you,

Ellen

Christopher Cooper's picture

Hi all!

David, thanks for putting together this discussion as a chance for us all to say hello to one another. 

I've been reading through the various forums on here since joining and absorbing, there's a lot of great info. For me, I'm trying to absorb how best to utilize technology in classroom settings for folks who aren't terribly versed with current technology. This is manageable onsite but significantly more difficult out of the classroom due to lack of access to the Internet in some cases. I've been picking up some pointers here and there to make this more manageable (and deliver offline materials in manageable ways), thank you.

As for me, my day-to-day typically revolves around implementing web technology solutions (especially website CMS solutions) for a variety of clients with most of them in the education sector or related to it. I'm based out of Richmond, VA. I'm often working with small business that provides educational opportunities (certifications for example) and this is where I struggle to help them deliver quality education. In addition, I'm an adjunct professor at GWU (I wrote a bunch about my initial experience as an adjunct professor and some takeaways if you're curious), which means I attempt to solve a different set of educational problems.

I'm just hoping to pick up further tips and guidance and deliver some insight where it seems my industry experience may be useful. Thanks again for the excellent forum.

Christopher R. Cooper

David J. Rosen's picture

Thanks for a great introduction, Christopher.  

"How best to utilize technology in classroom settings for folks who aren't terribly versed with current technology" would be a great discussion thread here. I am going to post it, and hope you will contribute to describing the challenge. 

David J. Rosen

Technology and Learning CoP Moderator

djrosen123@gmail.com

Cindy J Holden's picture

This is a response to David and Christopher regarding the topic :Helping teachers who are not well-versed in current technology. Northstar is a resource developed in Minnesota and used extensively in Rhode Island to support computer literacy. I have suggested we use it in Vermont for students - but also for staff development. I hope this can be a foundation piece and we will add to it as we get more sophisticated.

The technical aspects of staff development are daunting - but I think manageable with good leadership. What isn't discussed, and I think needs to be, is the resistance to learning and using new technology that I have often seen in my workplace. Am I alone in noticing this?  It is a complicated subject - especially when it comes to the integration of online learning. 

David J. Rosen's picture

Hello Cindy,

Thanks for introducing yourself. Northstar Online Digital Literacy Assessment is a great (free) assessment designed for adult basic skills learners and, as you point out, also useful for teachers to assess their own digital literacy skills. Do I recall correctly that at least one state -- Rhode Island? -- has teachers using Northstar to assess their own digital literacy skills?

By the way, there are many ways to see what has been discussed in the CoPs, and of course the topics can be discussed again: you can use the "Search" button, in the blue menu bar at the top of this page, to search the whole site; you can go to the LINCS Resource Collection, e.g. from the LINCS home page; and you can read through the discussions, e.g. select the "Discussions" tab from the discussion bar at the top of the Technology and Learning page.

Let me know if you have questions.

David J. Rosen

Moderator, Technology and Learning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com
 

Babcockm's picture

Hello! My name is Mary Babcock, and I am a GED(r) instructor. I taught GED(r) preparation courses at a community college, but recently, I moved and accepted a position with La Pine Park and Recreation in their adult education program. La Pine Park and Recreation is in La Pine, Oregon.

My interests in using technology include the desire to implement a blended learning GED(r) preparation program, and I hope to gather information as to blended learning processes that are effective for the very diverse population of individuals who attend GED(r) preparation classes.  

Thank you,

Mary

David J. Rosen's picture

It's great to have you here, Mary. Thanks for introducing yourself. I just looked at your profile and it's very helpful. (I have loved hiking on the coast of Oregon, too. What a beautiful state!) Thanks for completing it. I hope others, too, will soon compete theirs. The LINCS profiles provide a great way for us to begin to learn about our mutual interests.

Speaking of which, in the next few weeks, blended learning will be a topic of our discussion here, and I am hoping that it will then be an ongoing theme of our discussions. 

David J. Rosen

Technology and Learning CoP Moderator

djrosen123@gmail.com

 

Cindy J Holden's picture

Hello David and All,

Kate Nicolet has banged the drum and brought more than 50 Vermonsters to the LINCS campfire. My name is Cindy Holden and I have worked in adult basic and secondary education for 20 years through Vermont Adult Learning. I have studied Teaching with Technology through the Marlboro Graduate Center. My current interests: student access to free and open online coursework; artificial intelligence programs such as Core Skills Mastery;the use of social networks for workforce development; technology for industry recognized credentials;technology for civic education and participation; multi-media production. I am interested in the ways that technology can improve the quality of life. I am hoping to share ideas and resources.

Cindy

 

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David J. Rosen's picture

Hello Cindy,

Thanks for mentioning the Marlboro College Graduate Center, in Brattleboro VT, a terrific technology professional development center . Many years ago, when the WorldWide Web was very new, colleagues from World Education (Jeff Carter), The Literacy Assistance Center in NYC (Jana Sladkova and Emily Hacker) and I (then Executive Director of the Adult Literacy Resource Institute at University of Massachusetts Boston) hosted a week-long summer "web camp" there for adult basic education practitioners from around the country. (I believe Vermont Adult Learning originally suggested the Marlboro College Graduate Center to us.) The web camp was called Spiders at Work. Even then, the Graduate Center had fabulous technology labs that employed universal design principles (e.g. not only was the lab we used completely wheelchair accessible, but in true UDL fashion, this made it easier for the web camp facilitators to easily get to each participant to offer individual help as needed.

As you are interested in free and open online coursework, if you haven't yet, check out the free courses in the LINCS Learning Portal.

When you have a chance, please tell us about your interest in artificial intelligence (AI). How have you been able to connect that to your work in adult basic skills instruction? If so, what have you found that you think is particularly useful; for example, how does Core Skills Mastery use AI effectively?

As you have a lot of interests and, it appears, much learning and experience to share, I look forward to your continuing to be an active member of this Community of Practice.

David J. Rosen, Moderator

Technology and Learning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

Dr CNash's picture

Hello Dr. Rosen and Community.

My name is Carol Nash and I am completing my doctoral studies with a dissertation on implementing critical thinking to adult learners through technology, with an extreme focus on higher education.  I found this site my "happenstance" and have found it a gold nugget for where I plan to go further with my studies and expertise.  I have been a facilitator in an adult learning/college environment for 17 years and find the collaboration of education and technology extremely fascinating.  I have held several positions as a Human Resources Administrator, Network Administrator; Computer Network Engineering professor, Technical Training Center Manager, and Corporate IT Trainer.  I absolutely love education and the varying methods in which tutelage can be delivered. 

I joined this group because I wanted to interact with other professionals who have the expertise and experience I desire to integrate in some of the programs I am targeting to launch by my own organization at the beginning of 2016.  I am open to new ideas and find that learning from others is the best opportunity to determine what is needed currently, and the varying methods to implement similar programs in areas that are under served.

I will check in weekly to see what innovative ideas have been posted to the site and what I propose to bring to the adult learners in the 21st century as well.

 

Carol Nash

drcarolnash.it@gmail.com

 

 

David J. Rosen's picture

Hello Carol,

Glad you found us, and that our discussions here are helpful to you. I look forward to your participating in these discussions.

David J. Rosen

Moderator, Technology and Learning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

David J. Rosen's picture

Technology and Learning Colleagues,

There have been over 1,000 views of the introductions to the Technology and Learning Community of Practice since April. That's terrific, but we only have a dozen or so actual introductions. I hope you will take a few minutes and introduce yourself, even if you are a long-time member of this community, but especially if you are new.  Here are some possible things to mention:

  • Your name
  • Your role(s) in adult basic skills education, and/or in other types of education
  • Your program and agency/organization/institution and state
  • Your interests in using technology -- what you would like to learn, what you would like to share with colleagues here
  • What you are hoping to get from being a member of this CoP
  • What posts or discussions have been especially interesting or useful to you and why.
  • What topics you would like to see us discuss here.

David J. Rosen

Moderator, Technology and L:earning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

Terese Prena's picture

Hello!

My name is Terese Prena.  I am new to teaching adults.  For 14 years, I taught language arts in a middle school outside of Chicago.  I am currently taking a break from full time teaching to be at home with my young children.  However, to stay current, I joined the instructors  in the Adult Basic Education Program at a community college, College of DuPage.  For a year and a half I have taught both ELL and GED(r) preparation courses.  Within both courses, we strive to prepare students for success in the workforce and/or in higher education.

I'd like to learn new and improved ways of incorporating technology within my classes so that I can engage and motivate my students to learn.  As an ELL teacher, I know how important it is to use various forms of media.  Technology that I once relied on is no longer available to me.  So, I'd like to become familiar with other forms that my students and I can use.  Therefore, I hope to get lots of great ideas to try in the classroom from being a part of this group.

Paul Rogers's picture

Hello, 

I have been an ESL teacher for more than 25 years, and have developed a program for Spanish speakers.

My texts were used for the free website, Pumarosa, which was sponsored by STARFALL. The cell phone version is soon to be available.

During the past year I have been working on adding lessons to my Facebook page and to my Wiki Spaces and a WIX sites.
Through these sites, I have met thousands of students and teachers from the US and other countries, particularly in Latin America.
In general, I believe that technology is very important for ESL programs directed at Spanish speaking immigrants, particularly women. 
The cell phone has the potential to revolutionize adult education, I believe.
I look forward to further discussions.
Thanks!
Paul Rogers
David J. Rosen's picture

Thanks for introducing yourself here, Paul. I would like to hear more about your cell phone program and why you believe that the cell phone has the potential to revolutionize adult education.

David J. Rosen

Moderator, Technology and Learning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

 

Paul Rogers's picture

David,

First, I would say that nearly everyone has a cell phone. Many schools may not have enough computers, but all the students in the US and other countries have cell phones.

A student can study any time, any place, and in many ways via cell phones.

I now have a website through WIX where I put a lot of lessons and YouTube videos, and now I am slowly converting all of them for cell phone use. In place of textbooks, students can access the lessons with their cells. Soon Pumarosa will be ready. 

Many adults, particularly women, are not able to attend ESL classes regularly, and some not at all, but with the use of a cell phone they are able to participate in a class or at least have easy access to the "homework". 

What do you think the consensus is, David? Are others "on board" with the new technology?

Thanks,

Paul

 

 

David J. Rosen's picture

Paul, when you say you are converting lessons and YouTube videos for cell phone use it sounds to me like that means for smartphones (and tablets?), since plain feature phones (without Internet access) cannot access videos, and can only access text in small pieces through SMS Text Messaging. If so, yes I am seeing more publishers of proprietary websites, and and some teachers who are developing their own class websites, designing content to be accessed by smartphones. Perhaps it is time to have a discussion here in the LINCS T&L CoP on what kinds of content are best suited to portable digital devices such as smartphones and electronic tablets, and what kinds are best used on a computer and why. Would that interest you? Would it be of interest to others here?

I think it is important to distinguish plain cell phones/feature phones from smartphones, because there is at least one English language learning content developer that specifically designs content for delivery by SMS text messaging on feature phones (and that can also be accessed by smartphones.)

David J. Rosen

Moderator, technology and Learning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com
 

Paul Rogers's picture

David,

I agree that it is important to distinguish plain phones from smart / android phones, tablets, etc.  So, yes, in my post I was talking about the use of smart phones or androids, which are gradually replacing plain phones. Lessons on plain phones are more limited than those on smart phones, etc. 

Lessons on smart phones include audio, video, and text. In my program Facebook serves as the matrix, where I have four groups of lessons for students and teachers, with about 2000 members altogether.

About 5 years ago the term "ubiquitous" was used when talking about the use of technology, and I think it applies to smart phones very well. With smart phones "Free and Universal Education" becomes a reality in adult education. Presently too many adults are not able to attend classes, a problem that will be remedied with smart phone technology.

I see adult education programs providing phones to students as part of the course, just as a library lends books to patrons. I am sure that funding for such an approach is readily available.

When we talk about content, etc., as you suggest, it would be good to distinguish between "for credit" courses and "non-credit" courses, because the requirements are not the same. 

Distance learning can be merged with Blended classes with smart phone use. Students can participate wherever they are via their phones and feel part of the class. 

I see smart phones as a method to reach out to the community and provide a service that cannot be provided at the present time, which is my reason for using the term revolutionizing.

 

 

 

David J. Rosen's picture

Thanks for the clarifications, Paul.

David J. Rosen

Moderator, Technology and Learning CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

Paul Rogers's picture

David,

One of the most interesting developments in Technology and Education is the international proliferation of courses on all subjects via YouTube and other websites. English as a second or Foreign Language, for example, is growing in popularity due primarily to the fact that it has become the most used language internationally. On Facebook there are a lot of ESL/EFL teachers' groups, one of which is called:

Technology in English language teaching  -  https://www.facebook.com/ICT4ELT/?fref=nf

Out of this I expect a network to grow, where we all can gain good information.

 

 

 

 

 

KA Hill's picture

Hello, my name is Karen Hill.  I am the program coordinator for Parke-Vermillion Adult Education in Parke and Vermillion counties in Indiana.  I am new to the adult education side of education.  I taught in public school for 35 years.  I was an elementary special education teacher.  To say I loved every minute of it would be a stretch.  But I did enjoy my teaching experience.  I had some awesome students and some not so awesome.  I learned a lot about what it takes to be an educator but it was definitely time for me to retire.  I still love teaching so this was the perfect position for me.  I still get to interact with students but I am also the program administer.  I have 2 great kids, a son and daughter.  Both married with babies of their own.  This job allows me to keep my finger in the education pie but I can also spend lots of time with my sweet babies.  I am interested in all things technology.  I am always looking for ways to integrate technology in the classroom.

Kathy Walker's picture

I'm Kathy Walker from Red Oak, Iowa.  I am the High School Equivalency instructor for Southwestern Community College's Red Oak campus.  Additionally, I'm a director on our local school board where we have recently provided laptops to all of our students grades 6-12.  I live in a beautiful small town of about 6,000 but we have lost many jobs over the past several years and we are becoming very much a lower middle class community with declining school enrollment.  This is being felt at both the college (where there are fewer students enrolling in classes) and at the public school (currently with over 70% of our students qualifying for free and reduced lunch).  I'm interested in ways to better integrate technology in our public school as well as utilizing it more effectively in my HiSD  and ESL classes with adult learners. I look forward to learning from all of you!

Alecia Ohm's picture

Hi everyone, glad to meet you virtually! My name is Alecia and I recently transitioned to adult basic education after working in higher education for several years. I live and work in the suburbs of Chicago, Illinois. My career combines a mix of instructional design, learner experience, and technology. I have used a number of digital tools including LMSs such as Canvas, Moodle, and Blackboard as well as Voicethread, Zaption, Thinglink, and Branchtrack among others. Currently I'm working on a project called Illinois Digital Learning Lab. The lab is founded through a collaboration between Grand Victoria Foundation and The Joyce Foundation. We are building a learning community for educators and administrators across the state of Illinois to support, advise, and learn from each other.

I am excited to be a part of this CoP. I would like to learn about the use of different digital tools and their effectiveness, as well as connect with educators in the area. In addition I hope to explore how other states are supporting educators and experimenting with new strategies in the classroom.