Oh, no— here we go again!
Well, I’m pleased and surprised that Cornell University Press is finally posting its first book trailer on YouTube. Given that I’m now tenured at an institution whose unofficial motto is “The Sooner, the Better,” I can understand that I was waytoo impatient in wanting things like this there back in 2005!! (It looks like an interesting book, too, for those of us who appreciate White’s legacy…)
via The Telegraph.
The British Library may be seeking “relevance” with this project, as libraries across the United Kingdom continue to be shut down, but Google’s goal is hardly that.
One thing I haven’t mentioned in the blog (because I haven’t been doing very much blogging) is that for the past year I’ve had the pleasure and privilege of participating in the School of Community Medicine’s Faculty Academy which is a year-long interdisciplinary program headed by Dr. Dan Duffy that brings together faculty from the health and non-health-related disciplines on the Schusterman Center campus. This involves a weeklong summer immersion program along with incoming medical students and current students in our other health-related programs such as pharmacy and nursing, as well as monthly all-day meetings focused on particular participatory research-related topics about community health issues. Interested faculty are encouraged to involve themselves as deeply as they wish.
One of the several reasons I’ve enjoyed being a part of this (beyond getting to know some really smart people committed to working together on the overall health of Tulsa as a community) is that one of the texts being used is Otto Scharmer’s Theory U, which is an innovative new take on MIT’s classic “systems thinking” approach that I learned at Syracuse under the guidance of Bob Benjamin. Theory U attempts to put the soul back into the system, by considering all stakeholders and all externalities, not just the internal logic and feedback loops. Although I doubt that it represents a “silver bullet” that could be widely applied to transforming the norms of “corporate culture” in America, it is very, very well suited to what they’re trying to do here at OU-Tulsa.
Something to think about (as well as something to do!)….
Oh, I feel badly for the anonymous student this past semester who wrote the following comment in the eVAL course evaluation for the LIS 5033 class: “The instructor should give explicit directions with rubrics for everything.”
How could I not have noticed that someone was that unsuited for graduate-level work?
What a terrible time this person will have in the rest of the program, let alone in the profession, with that kind of expectation, obviously focused on the getting of “points” to the exclusion of getting the real point of “Information & the Knowledge Society.”
And didn’t even win a free iPad from eValuate.
Update: Upon reflection, since the evaluation was online (just like the course itself, lol!), perhaps I am taking this comment out of context. I just don’t think that anyone who managed to survive a whole semester with me (without dropping the course!) could have written this. (Except to tease , in which case it certainly worked!)
And now the spring semester is over, too soon for me, not soon enough for the students in my two classes, I suspect. (They have lives, this is my life, lol!) This was my first chance to teach LIS 5503 (“Information Literacy and Instruction”), which I loved and would love to be able to teach again in the future. So much to learn, so little time… and by that I don’t simply mean whatever the students learned from me but also what I learned from the students throughout the semester. This was the first class I’ve taught where I felt that almost everyone became actively aware of not only their “learning styles” (which has become quite commonplace) but of their “teaching styles” (as most of them are likely to be doing information literacy instruction of their own) as we reflected together on some of the andragogical and pedagogical issues. It also made me more conscious (and even, at times, self-conscious!) about what I was doing in the class. The whole semester served as a formative evaluation of the class itself, though probably no one else became aware of this until we reached the formal “summative” evaluation stage at the end of the semester!
Not every thing went well (I could have done more to support some of the discussion forums, for instance), but some things went extraordinarily well. And because those things were “owned” by people in the class, I may never know what their impact outside the class will be. But I do hope that the projects take on a life of their own now, whether it’s the animal-oriented inquiry project for low-income first graders, the evidence-based teaching methods tutorial for physics teaching assistants, the information coaching/research stages model, the middle-school health literacy videos, the health law resources tutorial for non-lawyer researchers, or the content creators guides to various “public domains,” to name a few. Or that, at least, the people who created the things like these will go on to do even better projects!
The University of Oklahoma Board of Regents met last week and approved a seven-year contract for incoming basketball coach Len Kruger. (They also approved my tenure and promotion to associate professor, along with that of several of my esteemed colleagues in the College of Arts and Sciences here, though there were no salary negotiations associated with that, needless to say. Hello, salary compression!)