Teaching Naked – How Moving Technology Out of Your College Classroom Will Improve Student Learning

teachingnakedNotes from  the book: “Teaching Naked – How Moving Technology Out of Your College Classroom Will Improve Student Learning”

  • The future of higher education is deeply intertwined with new technologies.
  • If we want campus education to survive, then we need to focus on the experience of direct physical interaction in HE and make it worth the extra money it will always cost to deliver.
  • The value of bricks-and-morter will remain in its face-to-face (i.e. naked) interaction between faculty and students.
  • Student engagement and faculty student interaction matter most in student learning – Alexander Astin
  • This book proposes that tech should be used outside of class in order to increase the naked interaction with students inside the classroom.

Book – Table of Contents

  • Chapter 1 – Explosion of e-learning and how it’s changing higher ed.
  • Chapter 2 – Today’s college students consider physical proximity unnecessary.
  • Chapter 3 – Games have become the model learning environment because of customization.
  • Chapter 4 – Current research on the brain, learning, and course design. (The best courses create a sequence of learning experiences involving both technology and classroom interaction.)
  • Chapter 5 – Practical ways to use multiple formats and the vast knowledge available on the Internet for a first contact with course material.
  • Chapter 6 – Using e-communications and social networks to engage students with assignments and constant learning.
  • Chapter 7 – Rethinking assessment for freeing up class time and motivating participation for transformative learning in class.
  • Chapter 8 – Making our naked classrooms into interactive exploration spaces.
  • Chapter 9 – Lessons of intellectual property and the delivery of content.
  • Chapter 10 – Faculty, curriculum, and how we can motivate more innovation and learning.
  • Chapter 11 – The campus infrastructure and the implications of space, scheduling, and improving face-to-face education to make it worth the extra cost.

To survive in the digital world, universities will need to convince students and parents of three things:

1) Learning takes place when students and faculty interact in classrooms
2) This learning is different from the learning that happens when you learn on your phone
3) This learning is worth the massive expense of a face-to-face education.

Technology makes it possible to improve learning in classrooms, but it is most effective when it is designed into out-of-class experiences and removed from classrooms.

The new classroom is a flat screen.
The challenge for universities is to take advantage of the new possibilities that e-learning provides to improve and prove learning across the curriculum.
With 79% of students commuting, creating a campus community is more difficult.
Social networking is a tool to create communities, connect with students, integrate ideas, apply knowledge, influence student culture, and improve student learning.
Teaching is about making connections, and the first thing we need to do is to connect with our students.
If you don’t use technology as a faculty member, you lose credibility with students – as you are unfamiliar with modern life.
1 – Use e-communication and all of it’s flavors, from txt to tweets to async to sync.  From short bursts to sustained live connections.  Building a classroom community for engaging outside of the classroom for more frequent re-engaging with course materials and concepts.  Discussion boards, IM, live, Bb social spaces,

2 – Podcast your lectures because you can take the time to explain (you may not have time in class to go over examples) and provide focus using audio over a diagram to help students hone in, students can rewind/relisten or speed forward, links to additional resources increase richness, flexibility in how students absorb material and take notes or when they review or how many times they review or even where they listen, move content delivery out of class time can give more time to maximize the naked classtime for interaction, integration, and deep processing, and finally student interactions and commenting on video lectures can enhance community and collaboration.

3 – A learning module includes a sequence of activities, from opening the objective to presentation of content to practice to review and assessment.  A Bb quiz before class, rubrics for assessment and assignment learning, games, peer review activities, open book,

4 – Lectures are good for showing students the right entry point into the content (the what and why we want them to learn).  For motivation to witness passion, new ideas, and inspiration.  For making connections and creating better questions while allowing significant time for reflection even if silence is awkward.  Lectures should only be given when there is a pedagogical need.  Is lecture that best technique for the content for the class?  Faculty should ask themselves if their lecture can demonstrate that it will promote the learning outcomes.  Lectures work best when students do not take notes because connection comes from attention.  The notes should really only be about a list of things to do.  Students learn by doing.

Restructuring your class with active learning exercises requires different preparation that a lecture using  Powerpoint.  The key to a good class is to make sure you really need people together in that place before you assemble with them – and have clear goals for your time together. (And if the goal can be better met with technology in/out of class.)  Good discussions help students make connections with each other and the content.  The ability to use technology is an essential skill of the 21st century.

The best education of the future will be hybrid in that there will be a balance of face-to-face interaction and online resources so that the precious F2F time is maximized.  Think about musicians who have a mix of recordings and live concerts.


On student engagement – to improve learning we must force students into more substantive interaction with material outside of class.  (And we can take advantage of technology to help create more meaningful interactions – take online quizzes, organize notes, do assignments, play games, work together, create communities, etc..)

Use technology to motivate and challenge students outside of the classroom to provide new opportunities to increase learning.
We need to provide more content outside of class, but also more and better ways to engage with that content.  Asking students to read is not enough, we need them to engage and interact with the content. To process it.  To like, comment, subscribe, tag, discuss, vote, take note, bookmark, prioritize, quiz, make connections, RT, MT, etc.
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