Turns out to be my last session attended at the League for Innovation CIT conference was from the Wisc Online – the Wisconsin Online Resource Center (note: link fails for Safari web browsers despite current flash plug-in).

The presentation pretty much as shown is available directory from their site (the “tour” button bottom center) as well as from the nifty biz-card sized CD-ROMs they provide.

Presenters Kay Chitwood and David Bunnow provided an overview and a good set of examples from the mroe than 1000 learning objects developed under this project. This 5 year old project supports the Wisconsin Technical College System.

Funded by a FIPSE grant in 1999, they started building learning objects but found more important to have a repository. A second grant from the national Science Foundation as supported new objects created for manufacturing areas. New funding from the state for adult education shows support is growing. They also have funding now from “eTech Wisconsin” the distance learning provider for the system.

Their definition of learning objects is “web-based self-contained chunks of learning… small enough to be embedded in a learning activity, lesson, or course. They are flexible, portable, and adaptable and can be used in multiple learning environments and across disciplines.” The presenters admit a narrower than most defintion, but also not that with more than 1000 objects created and in regular use, they have met their goals.

The scope or defined granularity is small, and closer to what others would define as media assets (I am not so sure about that). From a handout (an approximation here):

Their LOs are at or bellow the lesson level.

LOs are proposed and the content provided by faculty, for faculty, with assistance of Wisc-online development teams. Instructors choose content, instructional designers adapt content, and tech developers build it, reviewers and editors evaluate the object, teacher approves final. (so this is a model of tech staff building LOs for faculty). Faculty authors and technical developers are listed on each objects credit screen. Objects also include buttons to submit email delivered “reviews”.

David makes judgement whether proposals are “Cecile B. de Mille” (too grand a production) or something so specialized that it could not be re-used. His key question, “Does it have legs?” meaning is it something that can have a high degree of use and re-use.

They have a team of 6 technical developers. They recruit students from CIS program as interns, paid $10/hour, they get real portfolio examples. Some get hired on full time.

All objects are developed as Flash (having gone through Toolbook, AutthorWare, Director, Flash is now the most prevalent playback platform).

Time for development> 1 hour of content development to 6 hours of development time, for a brand new type fo activity; if it is one of series, the subsequent ones are developed faster.

Objectrs are not open source, they are accessed directly from a link to the Wisc online site, so the ,swf files are not re-purposed in other contexts and the .fla files are not availablr. This is use for WTSC colleges, but outsiders can use but are asked to contact the author.

Examples shown-

  • Sine Bar- measuring abgles
  • Cylnderical Grinder- learn parts of machine
  • GWAT Weld Pool- demonstrates welding process with video, an experience cannot be done directly with students
  • Reading Indicator Quiz: practice reading gauges
  • Using a goniometer- used in physical therapy, determines movability. Measuring angles, uses body figures created in Poser
  • Socialization- a simple timeline or lifeline wiht fill in boxes, can be printed or emailed
  • Conversions Pre-test – convert fractions, decimals, percents- this is just drill/practice, another one covers explanation of how to do it.
  • Anatomy of the Ear

Also 300 LOs being developed for Anatomy and Physiology.

comments It is hard to argue against the sheer number of objects available. The are “re-usable” in the sense that they can be re-used in other disciplines but the media or objects themselves are not resuable because they only way to get to them is via the links on the Wisc-Online site (a use would be a teacher providing a direct link to students, or a link from a web course page).

A number of them are more or less click and read sequenced sections, maybe with animated text and wooshing graphics a la the old hypercard method of content with next and back arrows.Some are pure drill and practice, with just “correct/incorrect” for feedback. I would prefer to see a bit more randomness to these as students can get clued to test and practice patterns and repeated content.

Others have a higher degree of user control and are less linear, and it appears they are getting into ones that are feature virtual tools and manipulatives.

I can see faculty in our system getting some use out if these, if at least to give them some ideas.

But again, 1000 objects is a lot to be said for.

The post "League Bloggin’: Learning Objects in the Real World" was originally dropped like a smoking hot potato at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 22, 2003.

Just a quick recap of this League Conference session, “Minnesota: Land of 10,000 E-Folios” by Paul Wasko of eFolio Minnesota the project providing electronic portfolios to all citizens of the state. This was a hands on session that allowed us as participants to create use the tools available in this software.

It actually is very easy to use, and offers quite a number of control and flexibility. It has a decent set of templates (using style sheets) and easy, consistent enditing tools. From the editing interface, you can always toggle to a preview mode to see the work.

I was impressed as far as it meets some of the flexibilty and ease of use issues our faculty have voiced for electronic portfolios. It offers level of access the owner can set for different users and group (restricting access to very specific sections of a portfolio). It doe snot seem to have the ability to have “official” pieces of work added by the institution, so the portfolio content is all user selected.

Interesting feature is the ability to create a custom survey/poll that the owner can collect information/feedback from their visitors.

I am not sure how long they will keep active the junk I made, but you can find it at:

Need to learn more about the Avenet software that runs this.

The post "League Bloggin’: Land of 10,000 E-Folios" was originally rescued from the bottom of a stangant pond at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 20, 2003.

Now this was a League conference highlight. Diana Oblinger knows how to deliver a compelling presentation (she speaks, she does not read) on a relevant topic. She researches and presents data, references, processes, and important ideas. And she uses PowerPoint with a bit more power and point than most.

Someone give video copies of her keynote this morning to some of the other clowns that they have put on stage here.

The title was “The Agile College” and started with a compelling true or false quiz- “The US is still the world leader in higher education”, and then presented an impressive string of facts and data that shows the many places we have lost of long held edge. From drops in completion rates, to dramatic differences in success from poorer students, the message as not about doom and gloom, but a wake up call to do something radically different in higher education.

She had our attention..

The post "League Bloggin’: Diana Oblinger keynote" was originally emerged from the primordial ooze and first walked on land at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 20, 2003.

Wow, now this was probably the best presentation at this conference…. wait a minute…. Can I blog my own presentation at the League for Innovation Conference? (well not while I am doing it). This morning we gave our show on Building an Innovation Collection (with a bit of Competition and Bribery).

We of course got the request to open source it (I am in favor of but lacking time and resources to generalizing the code- heck it is just a database and a pretty front end) and some interest in doing a session elsewhere. They love the metaphor. It plays well in Milwaukee.

I had fun. So did Charlene, my co-presenter, she was a good sport with me putting her on the spot. If you missed it, you missed out.

The post "League Bloggin’: MLX" was originally squeezed out of the bottom of an old rusted tube of toothpaste at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 20, 2003.

Monday morning here at the League for Innovation conference and I was asked by my Macromedia friends to make some remarks at their breakfast session- a packed room of about 50 or so.

And then I was following an awesome series of examples and ideas from Bill and Eric two faculty from Sinclair College that do some wacky (in a good way) and creative things teaching math and psychology.

Below are the notes I made up ahead of time- I did not use the notes (too many bad examples here of speakers reading canned speeches), so I cannot vouch that this was all I said…

The post "League Bloggin’: “Sturgeon’s Law, Home Depot, and Dilbert’s Boss”" was originally thawed from a previous ice age and melted at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 20, 2003.

Blogging at the League for Innovation conference got a wee more difficult as the Wi-Fi went AWOL, 404. The word is even the wired network here in the Midways Airport Convention center due to a blaster type worm banging out of a machine in the exhibit area. Last I saw, the techies were yanking machines off the net one by one to find the offender.

It could not be my computer ;-)

So here, post sessions is a quick recap….

The post "League Bloggin’: The Rest of Day 1" was originally pulled like taffy through a needle's eye at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 19, 2003.

Okay, first session at the League for Innovation conference, this one from Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College titled “Weaving Critical Thnking into Online Courses”.

Okay, we wade through the cheeese-head jokes, a lot of background on WITC, their mission, their learning acadamies… still waiting 30 minutes in to get to the Critical Thinking.

The college does have a plan for every course to have online ‘component’ by 2006 (current system in Blackboard).

Developed a critical thinking curriculum through their Facilitating the Future Gathering, an online course for faculty.

Oh, apparently all the content is inside Blackboard, so nothing the world at large can benefit from. Damn CMS padlocked silos.

The post "League Bloggin’: “Weaving Critical Thinking…”" was originally slapped on the butt by a cigar smoking doctor yelling "It's a post!" at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2003/10/league-bloggin/) on October 19, 2003.

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