The internet as our future

After reading these articles I feel like I have a better understanding of the direction that higher education is going but see that there are many obstacles before for we get there.  I really like and agree that more college aged students should start to build a platform for themselves so that they can better broadcast what they believe in.  Before this class that thought never really crossed my mind but now with a better understanding of how to broadcast my views I feel obligated to post my beliefs for others.  I believe that this will also give the student a better way to view their own progress throughout their different pieces of work.  As stated by Audrey Watters, “The importance of giving students responsibility for their own domain cannot be overstated. This can be a way to track growth and demonstrate new learning over the course of a student’s school career – something that they themselves can reflect upon, not simply grades and assignments that are locked away in a proprietary system controlled by the school.” (The web we need to give students).  As students we get an end of the semester grade but those don’t show the overall growth we’ve made throughout the semester.

The difficult part for both students and faculty with using online systems to guide a class is how to create assignments that go along with the class.  Take this assignment for instance, we have a vague guide of what to go by which is perfect because we can write about what we want and how we feel but there are enough guidelines so that the professor can see whether or not the assignment was done up to the standard that they want.  As Andrew Rickard states, “The second, in many ways, mirrored the traditional pedagogical structure by assigning papers or short answer assignments to be posted online through blogs. This is not necessarily bad, but also doesn’t necessarily empower.” (Do I own my own domain if you grade it?)  The point to this type of teaching approach is that students are to feel like they are giving their own opinion but at the same time each class still needs to be graded.  As with our class it is set up as a pass/fail type class but we have clearly defined guidelines that state what we need to do in order to obtain a passing grade.

If this type of teaching style was started when each student was a freshman it would pay great dividends for each student by the time senior year rolled around.  At first it would be difficult but at the same time if some of the first year seminars were assigned to go towards this type of structure then each year things would become easier.  Garner Campbell wrote, “Templates and training wheels may be necessary for a while, but by the time students get to college, those aids all too regularly turn into hindrances.” (A personal cyberinfrastructure).  If the college system dedicated freshman year to students building an online platform and helping them with the different systems involved then I believe that by sophomore year or junior year most students would be experts and there would be a extreme variety of information coming from a specific view of the students.  We would begin to see a change in where professional information would be coming from with a drastically different view. This could be very beneficial when trying to solve complex problems in regards to the college system.


Campbell, Gardner. “A Personal Cyberinfrastructure.” Educause Review. vol. 44, no. 5, 4 September 2009.

Rickard, Andrew. “Do I own my domain if you grade it?” 10 Aug. 2015, Accessed 18 Sept. 2017.

Watters, Audrey. “The Web We Need to Give Students.” Hack Education. 19 October 2015.

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1 thought

  1. I was engaged with a conversation online with someone who was claiming that first-year students don’t have the aptitude to learn like this: to do self-directed learning, plan their own architectures and assignments, hone their own approaches to curriculum. In my experience, it’s actually easier to ask newer students to work like this than more advanced students who have already become accustomed to the traditional rules of learning in college. I likes hearing your take on it.

    Really been appreciating your voice across all the channels so far this semester!

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