As flowers and plants are popping up all over the library this week, you’re getting a preview of the Living Library exhibit! It’s reminded me this morning of a wonderful children’s book by Maurice Druon about the child who can grow plants anywhere (it’s available to borrow from the Open Library). I hope you’re able to join in the fun when the exhibit opens next Tuesday afternoon.
Earlier this week Kaila shared some of the work she’s been doing to pilot a new online tutorial on doing research, based on work done at other university libraries – using our LibGuides platform. This is part of the really exciting and multifaceted work the whole Academic Services team has been doing to conceptualize and realize a uniquely polytechnic literacies program for Cal Poly students. They’re coordinating this work with the campus and faculty on university-wide literacy outcomes and assessment. And they’ve participated in not one but two grant proposals already this year, in collaboration with the Center for Expressive Technologies, to advance data literacies by creating “data sandbox” experiences for students. Exciting work!
Two important reports have come out recently relating to the future of higher education and online learning. One was from MIT: “Online Education: A Catalyst for Change in Higher Education.” It’s worth a look – not just for their high level recommendations (including a call for change agents who practice “learning science” and “learning engineering”), but also for concepts such as “digital scaffolding” to enhance (not replace) in-person teaching. How? By providing “spaced” learning to improve retention, or game-based learning to contextualize abstract concepts, and by providing feedback and data to the teacher for better insight into their students’ needs. Also just out: a Pew report on “Lifelong Learning and Technology.” The report describes “the joy — and urgency — of learning,” and describes a high level of engagement in lifelong learning (around 75% of those surveyed), but also cautions that awareness of and engagement with online learning is relatively low for adult learners who are poorer or less educated. Another version of a persistent digital divide.
Have a great weekend,