Stay Organized with My Study Life

https://www.mystudylife.com/

My Study Life is the brain child of a frustrated university student in the UK who needed a way to stay organized. The functional app Jamie Clark created is an organizational tool designed to help students keep track of their hectic class schedules, due dates for assignments, and more. Students enter their class schedules and tasks to be completed into the free app and it will automatically integrate with the calendar in the app and any personal calendars specified.  The app will push reminders to students about upcoming due dates and classes. One of the unique features that differentiates this app from others is the ability to easily visualize increments of a project. Instead of having a single due date for the entire project, the app can break the larger project in to smaller pieces and assign due dates for each part of the project to help the students stay on track. The app also syncs with multiple devices and can be accessed without web access.

http://www.mystudylife.com

As adult educator, I would ask my students to sign up for the My Study Life app as a way to keep themselves organized for the course. This could limit the number of absences and missed assignments.

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Learning with Memrise

https://www.memrise.com/

Memrise is a fee-based language-learning app designed with three fundamental principles in mind: neuroscience, community, and fun. The content of the app is divided into study areas (called courses) including history, geography, art, literature, math, science and more. Learners choose a course and the content is delivered in a game-like format for learning, practice, and assessment. Learners can also create groups around common courses.  The course also offers video and audio demonstrations of language so students can hear pronunciations.

Mobile learning is effective for learners of any age and educational level (Park, 2011) and has been proven to improve academic achievement (Elfeky & Masadeh, 2016). I would recommend Memrise to my adult learners as a way to explore additional course content and rehearse critical facts or concepts we covered in class. I would establish a group around topics we are studying in class so that all students can be working on the same content at the same time. For example, we are studying the English terms for physical sciences. All students in the class would sign up for the science lesson I indicate and can study the terms using the Memrise app on their own time. 

References 

Elfeky, A. I. M., & Masadeh, T. S. Y. (2016). The Effect of Mobile Learning on Students’ Achievement and Conversational Skills. International Journal of Higher Education5(3), 20–31. 

Park, Y. (2011). A pedagogical framework for mobile learning: Categorizing educational applications of mobile technologies into four types. International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 12(2), 78–102. 

Social (Science) Networking with LabRoots

https://www.labroots.com/

With more than 2.8 million users, LabRoots is one of the most popular social networking websites specific to science. Think of it as Reddit for scientists. Users share content, view scientific news, and form connections around topics of interest. The beautifully designed interface makes it an attractive option for keeping up with the latest in microbiology, immunology, genetics, neuroscience. LabRoots also offers a gaming component with their Leaderboard. Users earn points when interacting with content or others on the site and a leaderboard keeps users competing for status. LabRoots also offers webinars related to scientific topics.

One of the principles of the connectivist learning theory is that knowledge rests in a diversity of opinions and is gained through a process of connecting information (Siemens, 2005).  Applying the connectivist approach to the adult learning context, I could envision students in the sciences using LabRoots as a way of connecting with classmates around course topics. If I assign a topic such as chromosomal mutations, students could use LabRoots to search for relevant information and collaborate with one another via comments features on the site. Alternatively, students could contribute content to the LabRoots site as a class assessment.

References Siemens, G. (2005).  Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. International Journal of Instructional Technology & Distance Learning. Retrieved from: http://www.itdl.org/Journal/Jan_05/article01.htm

View My Video on Vimeo!

https://vimeo.com/

Vimeo is a popular video hosting site used by more than 80 million people for education, business, and various social media purposes. The basic premise of Vimeo is its video player to which anyone can upload videos and embed them anywhere (websites, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc.). It is user-friendly and simple to use by anyone who can create a video, so it appeals to amateur cinematographers, educators, advanced filmmakers, business marketing professional, or anyone who wants to publish funny animal videos. When the videos are published through Vimeo, they are automatically ADA compliant and accessible on any device regardless of bandwidth or platform.

The owner of the video can establish privacy settings and invite others to view, edit, or contribute to the video. Yes! You read it right! Others can edit or comment right in the video itself. Even better, all versions are available to revert to in case a contributor gets too creative with their edits.  The video owner can also include interactive elements in the video, such as a call to action box that prompts the viewer to respond to questions.

Vimeo also offers data analytics via a dashboard for the video owner. The dashboard integrates data from any site on which the video is located and includes data related to number of views, engagement length, and types of access. Vimeo is not a free service, but there are special pricing plans for educators and students.

Will Richardson (2010) says, “the most sweeping change in our relationship with the Internet may not be as much the ability to publish as it is the ability to share, connect, and create with many, many others of like minds and interests” (p. 85). Vimeo is more than just a video sharing platform because it allows video owners to interact within the video content and collaborate to iterate on the original creation. In the higher education setting, I would recommend instructors use Vimeo for a collaborative video project around a content area topic. For example, in a political science class, students could debate a current political topic and upload videos of different perspectives on the topic. Then they could collaboratively edit the video segments to show both sides of the argument in a single video that the instructor could evaluate. 

References

Richardson, W. (2010). Blogs, wikis, podcasts, and other powerful web tools for classrooms (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Let’s Talk About TEDEd

https://ed.ted.com/about

Most of us are familiar with the TED family of products. We have probably listened to a TEDx Talk or maybe attended a TED Conference. The TED philosophy is that “ideas have the power to change attitudes, lives, and ultimately, the world” (TED, n.d.) and their TED Ed platform provides an elegant space for students and educators to contribute to that mission.

TED Ed is a platform for students and educators to share ideas and content. The platform provides a library of short animated videos about educational content around which educators can create their own interactive lessons. For example, if there is a video on the digestive system of the human body, the instructor can create her own quiz, add a discussion thread, or post additional resources for students.  Students and educators can also contribute their own content to the platform and share their ideas with the world.

TED Ed can be used for young students and for adults. The existing content is wide ranging so students and educators can likely find level-appropriate content about the subject in which they are interested. If not, they can create their own and add it to the library and share with others!

Reference

TED (n.d.) TED Ed: About. Retrieved from: https://ed.ted.com/about

Photo from: https://medium.com/@ppaccone/my-favorite-ted-ed-lesson-8264b9e3102d

Quiz Me!

https://quizlet.com/

To put it simply, Quizlet is an app through which students can study content. However, that simplifies the app unnecessarily. Quizlet is a powerful, customizable tool that supports learning using principles of cognitive science. The app allows students (or teachers) to create their own quizzes, flashcards, games, and diagrams using their own content or shared content. Students can quickly and easily build their own quiz or study aids using the content they are currently studying in class. Or, students can search for a topic among the thousands on the site and find study aids created by others on the same topic. Students can even customize the content created by someone else! One of the strengths of this app is its ability to customize the delivery format to a user’s preference. If students prefer flashcards, the content can be generated into flashcards. If students prefer diagrams, the content can be placed in a diagram.

Quizlet can be used for all ages and all content. For adults, this app could be used in a work-training situation or in a college classroom. One example might be students in a physical therapy program studying the medical terms for body movements.

Photo from: https://braveintheattempt.com/2018/09/11/edtech-updates-2018-quizlet/