TCHL-GE.3080 Learning In and Out of Schools

Technology enhancement report

Syllabus | Course Outline

This graduate seminar is an iteration of a course developed by Rogers Hall and Leona Schauble at Vanderbilt University. I have borrowed heavily from the text, structure, and content of their syllabi in its many versions over the years. 

In the summer of 2015 the course was the lucky recipient of the support of the Steinhardt Instructional Technology group as part of a course enhancement grant. 

Basic setup:

We use the free implementation of Slack as our course management and communication platform. In other words, the bulk of our course materials, assignments, administrative business, resources, and other sharings are posted here. (Our readings are housed in NYUClasses for a technical reason that I won't get into here, but the links are still posted to Slack so no one has to actually navigate to NYUClasses separately). 

Most of our substantive online discussion happens through course readings and peer reviews with the help of, which is an online annotation tool. Here are some examples of students' annotations so far this semester. I've found that they are really engaging with the readings and each other, trying to make connections between important ideas, and asking questions.

Some notes on implementation (these are just stubs; still under construction):

  • supporting annotations (prompts, modeling, direct instruction)
  • annotating and discussion to support developing understandings (not to demonstrate)
  • temporal, modal, and intensity distribution of engagements 
  • lack of consistent routine
  • balance between specific learning goals and a "learning curriculum"
  • instructor participation, assessment, and evaluation