First published in Campus Morning Mail 26th April 2022
Phrenology was a popular pseudoscience in the 19th Century that posited that we might be able to predict mental traits based on the shape of people’s skull. In unrelated news, ed tech vendor Classroom Technologies, which sells an overlay for teaching in Zoom called Class (that actually isn’t terrible), has announced that they are planning to test AI based tools to measure learner engagement using facial recognition technology. This handy article outlines how it may or may not work.
Webinar 28/4/22 12 noon AEST – Shouting into the void? Student engagement in the online synchronous classroom from ASCILITE TELedvisors Network
The question of student engagement in online synchronous classes like Zoom has been a hot topic in recent years, with wide ranging debate about the ethics of forcing students to turn their cameras on. Dr Katie Freund, the TELT manager at the ANU medical school, will discuss some of these issues and offer some useful strategies in a webinar this Thursday for the ASCILITE TELedvisors Network.
Catching AI generated assessments from Brenton Krenkel (Twitter)
Brenton Kenkel is a political scientist at Vanderbilt University. He recently fed some of his essay questions into GPT-3, an AI text generation tool from Open AI to see what it might create. He shares the surprisingly high quality responses that he got back in this tweet, which leads into a fascinating discussion about the future of assessment and academic integrity.
CC4 Collaborate22 – Collaboration in Higher Education videos from Vimeo
The tendency for teams, departments and disciplines to exist in silos has long been recognised as a weakness of Higher Education, with institutional efforts to foster interdisciplinarity achieving varied levels of success. The University of Calgary recently worked with London Metropolitan University to run a symposium on the matter and these 17 videos (~15 mins each) capture some of the rich discussion about work in the field.
Why Wordle Works, According to Desmos Lesson Developers from Mathworlds
By now, many of us have played Wordle and the many variants (Quordle/Octordle/Sedecordle/etc) and possibly even moved on. This piece offers some nice insights into the ludological principles that make games like these so successful and the elements to consider (e.g. many paths to success, freedom to fail) in wider learning and teaching activities.