UHʻs first net-zero buildings are online at UH Mānoaʻs College of Education.
Capital improvement plan focuses on improving student spaces
“Instead of traditional classrooms lined with rows of single desks, flexible furniture with various seating options can be utilized to encourage small group discussion and dynamic learning configurations,” said UH Vice President for Administration Jan Gouveia, who oversees the UH Office of Capital Improvements for UH’s ten campus system.
- Related UH News videos: 21st century classroom design cultivates collaboration (September 15, 2014) and New classroom and teaching technique tested at UH Mānoa (September 24, 2012)
“Our 6-Year CIP Plan takes into consideration multiple factors that comprehensively address the impact of aging facilities on the overall learning and research experience through the eyes of our students and faculty,” she continued.
Pivot toward prioritizing facility needs and capital investments
The 6-Year CIP Plan pivots away from the one-dimensional focus on deferred maintenance and capital renewal that simply restores facilities to their original state for their original purpose. Instead, the plan sets forth a new concept when approaching the prioritization of facility needs and capital investments at the university.
CIP plan’s working principals
- Target those facilities with the highest utility and poorest conditions through upgrades to the interior/exterior structures, building roofs, mechanical and electrical systems, pedestrian pathways and roadways.
- Prioritize classrooms, laboratories and student spaces with a focus on improving the learning and research environment.
- Rethink space as university space, rather than departmental space, and evaluate whether areas can be repurposed or consolidated to support priority programs and address facility needs through flexible and adaptable space management.
The plan is designed to foster interdisciplinary collaboration and communication while maximizing the efficiency of both the capital and operational dollar.
The 6-Year CIP Plan goes before the UH Board of Regents Committee on Planning and Facilities November 3. If approved, it will then go before the full board on November 17.
By Clark Quinn
I was asked by a colleague to answer some questions for a project on how to learn. I naturally decided to answer in a blog post ;).
What does a PDF bring to mind? Pages and pages of words? Lengthy research documents? Boredom at its peak? And no escape?
Well to some extent that’s true, considering the omnipresent nature of these documents that haunt you everywhere. PDFs have almost become a standard for writing company announcements, policies, terms and conditions, how to’s, newsletters, training material and what not. While some PDFs may be short, quite many of them – such as those used for writing policies & procedures, or for training purposes may be mercilessly long.
One of the biggest myths surrounding e-learning is that it is simply information presented on a computer screen. NO. Printed paper material could do that. E-learning is much beyond just saving paper – it is the realization of the full potential of instructional design by harnessing the functionalities provided by IT, such as interactivity, animations, call to actions, etc., in a manner that takes care of the cognitive load on learners. So, lengthy PDFs cannot be a part of an effective e-learning course. Existing PDFs, can however be converted into short e-learning courses, keeping the following things in mind:
Chunking content will be the basic task of converting any PDF to a course. The onus is on instructional designers to read through the entire document and divide it into portions.
- Begin by dividing the entire PDF into large identifiable sections.
- Scrutinize each section to assess if it can be made smaller. Any section which can function as a standalone topic should NOT be combined with any other. With e-learning or m-learning, small is big.
- Each standalone topic must have its own defined objective which elucidates what specific knowledge it would impart. Learners must feel motivated to take a course by learning from the objective that they will add these specific skills/knowledge to themselves. Learn how to write objectives here.
- Break paragraphs from the PDF into bullet points wherever possible. For example, if there is a one-page continuous introduction which talks about why compliance training is important, extract the points stated there and put them in a numbered/bulleted list “Benefits of Compliance Training”.
- While creating lists, do not go for more than 2 levels of indentation, i.e.
- Many levels of sub-division may cause learners to lose mental track of the main sub heading. If there are too many subcategories that need to be covered, convert them into standalone topics as suggested in point
- Use hyperlinks to connect these topics. This keeps pages neat while adding depth to the course.
Designing the layout
One of the drawbacks of PDFs is that they aren’t generally very appealing to the eye. Content is packed together so close, that learners tend to mentally reject it as soon as they encounter it. The result is, they might scroll up and down the doc, but actual learning hardly happens. While converting a PDF into an e-learning object, this drawback must be kept in mind. Using standardized colors creates an impact. If possible, use different color schemes for different kinds of topics, say all compliance training modules in black and red, while all marketing related modules in blue and black. Keep text neat and adequately spaced, but beware: adequately does not mean too much, spacing should be optimum. A pilot test or taking the opinion of a third person helps.
Embedding multimedia and interactivity
- Adding multimedia such as images, labelled diagrams, videos, etc. are literally worth thousands of words if you can add the right multimedia element at the right place. Don’t give in to the temptation of adding ‘empty’ multimedia just for the sake of it. This is the most common problem with images because of easily available resources such as shutterstock, flickr, etc.
- For explaining processes, diagrammatic life-cycles or chain processes can be incorporated wherein each step or stage in the process is clickable for further information.
- For difficult words or technical terminologies, create mouse over events. By hovering the mouse over a new term, a one-line description should appear in a bubble or box. This clarifies concepts to the core without students having to move to different pages or access the internet to understand. Remember: the easier it is to learn, the more they will.
- Use call-to-action (CTA) buttons in contrasting colors. CTA verbs such as ‘click’, ‘read’, ‘begin the course’, etc. create a sense of urgency and catch learners’ attention to find out more.
- Also embed quizzes or short crossword puzzles to increase interactivity as well as test the learning of trainees. Create them at the end of each short module and collect their scores. This will keep them motivated throughout the course.
PDFs are a source of rich and high quality material but often fail to keep learners on track. Thankfully, e-learning saves the day! Good luck!
POSTED BY SARAH THEISSEN, 24 OCTOBER 2016
Today is the beginning of this year’s annual Open Access Week. Now in its eighth year, this global event is an opportunity for the academic research community to continue to learn about the benefits of open access, to share what they’ve learned, and to inspire wider participation in helping to make open access the norm.
Simply adhering to open access mandates isn’t good enough anymore. To truly change the way science is communicated, action needs to be taken. Fittingly, this year’s Open Access Week theme of “Open in Action” is all about taking concrete steps to open up research and scholarship and encouraging others to do the same. In this blog post, we look at some of the ways we at F1000Research already do to work towards wholly open science
Open science is the concept of opening up all aspects of research, to allow others to follow the process and collaborate. Open science incorporates open access, open peer review, post-publication peer review, and open data. It also includes other ways to make science more transparent and accessible, such as open notebook science, citizen science, and aspects of open source software as well as some crowdfunded research projects.
Open notebook science
While some groups use online, password protected, lab notebooks to share notes with collaborators, open notebook science takes this a step further by making day-to-day lab notes available in real time. There is a general reluctance of many researchers to share ongoing research data in the fear of being scooped by competing groups in academia or industry, as well as being unsure whether they can still publish the work in their journal of choice afterwards.
Meanwhile, a partial sharing of ongoing data figures, conference posters or meeting slides is becoming more popular. You can submit slides and posters communicated at conferences to F1000Research completely free of charge
The goal of Open Data is to make data available to anyone and reusable for further analysis. For over 15 years, the human genome project has illustrated that opening up research data makes it much easier for other scientists to build upon that work and advance the field.
Availability of all underlying data used to generate the figures in a paper makes it easier for others to reproduce the work. This complete transparency of data also discourages researchers from falsifying figures in their publication.
The F1000Research data policy mandates all primary research articles should include the submission of the data underlying the results, together with details of any software used to process results. Failure to provide such data for publication without good justification is likely to result in the article being rejected.
Open source software
Open source software refers to software that is distributed with the idea that it can be shared and used by others. For certain applications that is feasible, but at the moment, a lot of scientific research and communication often relies on software that is not open source. F1000Research publishes Software Tool Articles and mandates that the source code for new software must be made openly, and permanently available in a structured repository.
Open peer review
There has been a lot of discussion about the traditional model of single-blind peer review and how it is broken. The bottom line is that it is ripe for serious disruption. Some journals publish peer reviews alongside articles that are approved for publication so the reader can place the article in context and see what the reviewers contributed.
Post-publication open peer review
At F1000Research our goal has been to champion transparency in the peer review process: each article we publish includes the referees’ names and affiliations, their reports and the approval status. Referee reports are posted as they are received and the peer review status of the article is updated with every published report as well as version.
We believe this model truly speeds up the sharing of new findings and uses a transparent and constructive way to review articles. Especially in emergency situation such as the recent Zika outbreak, traditional peer review can severely delay the sharing of vital new research findings. We have a dedicated channel for Zika & Arbovirus Outbreaks and submissions to it are free until at least the end of the year to facilitate this.
Future of open science
Open access has been around for over fifteen years, and has been growing steadily over the past decade. Funding organisations are asking their academics to make their findings available freely and openly and with the recent launch of Wellcome Open Research one funder has even adopted our publishing model as a platform for their grantees.
Open peer review is becoming more popular, but post-publication peer review is still quite new. We believe that as it gains traction, reviews themselves will be cited and reviewers will add these activities to their publication records.
Despite a perceived fear of competition, and a reward system that still favours publication in exclusive, and often closed journals, scientific research is moving toward open science, and we wholeheartedly support Open Access Week 2016 and its ethos of Open in Action!
F1000Research is an original open science publishing platform for life scientists that offers immediate open access publication, transparent post-publication peer review by invited referees, and full data deposition and sharing. F1000Researchaccepts all scientifically sound articles, including single findings, case reports, protocols, replications, null/negative results, and more traditional articles.
It is little wonder we don’t understand what critical thinking is. The literature around it is abstract and fragmented among several different scholars or scholarly teams who work in their own silos and don’t build on or even cite each other. Still, we can find some common ground among them. While each has a different definition of critical thinking, they all agree that it involves the cognitive operations of interpretation and/or analysis, often followed by evaluation. They also concur that students have to critically think aboutsomething, which means students have to learn how to do it in a discipline-based course. Another point of agreement is how difficult it is to do; it goes against our natural tendency to want to perceive selectively and confirm what we already “know” to be true. Therefore, critical thinking involves character as well as cognition. Students must be inclined to pursue “truth” over their own biases, persist through challenges, assess their own thinking fairly, and abandon mistaken reasoning for new and more valid ways of thinking. These intellectual “virtues” don’t come easily or naturally.
Critical thinking scholars also agree that questions are central to students acquiring critical thinking skills. We must ask students challenging, open-ended questions that demand genuine inquiry, analysis, or assessment—questions like these:
- What is your interpretation/analysis of this passage/data/argument?
- What are your reasons for favoring that interpretation/analysis? What is your evidence?
- How well does your interpretation/analysis handle the complexities of the passage/data/argument?
- What is another interpretation/analysis of the passage/data/argument? Any others?
- What are the implications of each interpretation/analysis?
- Let’s look at all the interpretations/analyses and evaluate them. How strong is the evidence for each one?
- How honestly and impartially are you representing the other interpretations/analyses? Do you have a vested interest in one interpretation/analysis over another?
- What additional information would help us to narrow down our interpretations/analyses?
These are just a few examples of the kinds of questions that require your students to engage in critical thinking. After giving an answer, students must also 1) describe how they arrived at their answer to develop their metacognitive awareness of their reasoning and 2) get feedback on their responses—from you, a teaching assistant, another expert, or their peers—so they can correct or refine their thinking accordingly.
Some teaching methods naturally promote inquiry, analysis, and assessment, and all of them are student-active (Abrami et al., 2008). Class discussion may be the strongest, and it includes the debriefings of complex cases, simulations, and role plays. However, debates, structured controversy, targeted journaling, inquiry-guided labs, and POGIL-type worksheets are also effective. All of these learning experiences can arouse students’ curiosity, stimulate their questions, and induce them to explain and justify their arguments.
Finally, we need to remember that instructors are role models. Students need to see us showing the courage to question our own opinions and values, the fair-mindedness to represent multiple perspectives accurately, and the open-mindedness to entertain viewpoints opposed to our own. When we do this, we should let students know that we are practicing critical thinking.
Two faculty members, Mel Seesholtz and Brian Polk, illustrate these qualities during their regularly scheduled debates in their course, Religion in American Life. The latter is a noted critic of dogma-based organized religion and the former, a college chaplain. While sincerely trying to forward their viewpoint, they consciously model critical thinking, civil discourse, and the complementary dispositions for their class (Seesholtz & Polk, 2009). They demonstrate that the stormy wars of words so common in today’s political mass media do not represent the only way to disagree. If students don’t see the thoughtful, respectful alternative, how will they be able to peacefully co-exist with one another in this diverse world?
Abrami, P. C., Bernard, R. M., Borokhovski, E., Wade, A., Surkes, M. A., Tamim, R., & Zhang, D. (2008). Instructional interventions affecting critical thinking skills and dispositions: A stage 1 meta-analysis. Review of Educational Research, 78(4), 1102-1134.
Paul, R., & Elder, L. (2013). Study of 38 public universities and 28 private universities to determine faculty emphasis on critical thinking in instruction. Available athttp://www.criticalthinking.org/pages/study-of-38-public-universities-and-28-private-universities-to-determine-faculty-emphasis-on-critical-thinking-in-instruction/598
Seesholtz, M., & Polk, B. (2009, October 10). Two professors, one valuable lesson: How to respectfully disagree. Chronicle of Higher Education. Available athttp://chronicle.com/article/Two-Professors-One-Valuable/48901/
Dr. Linda B. Nilson recently retired from Clemson University, where she was the founding director of the Office of Teaching Effectiveness and Innovation. Her books include Creating Self-Regulated Learners: Strategies to Strengthen Students’ Self-Awareness and Learning Skills (Stylus, 2013) and Teaching at Its Best: A Research-Based Resource for College Instructors (Jossey-Bass, 2010).
© Magna Publications. All rights reserved.
Please help us celebrate Open Access Week, October 24 – October 28, 2016! On October 25th at 10:30 AM, we would like to invite you to attend a UH Manoa sponsored panel discussion on Copyright, Intellectual Property, Creative Commons & Fair Use via HITS in LC 108B. Topics include:
- Key points to consider when using Open Access materials or creating your own;
- Copyright maximalism in the information age;
- Creative Commons licenses, including examples in our everyday lives; and
- Four factors of the Fair Use doctrine and how to apply them.
Brian Huffman, Electronic Services Librarian and teaches Scholarly Research at William S. Richardson School of Law.
Debora Halbert, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and the author of The State of Copyright, the co-edited Handbook of Intellectual Property.
Billy Meinke, OER Technologist for the UHM Outreach College; formerly at Creative Commons, specializing in education applications of their open licenses.
Peter Shirts, Music & Audiovisual Librarian, Acting Head of Sinclair Library & the Wong Audiovisual Center.
Please join us to learn more about copyright issues and how they can affect you! Seating is limited so please email email@example.com if you plan to attHi Annend. Thank you!
Future Focus 2016 opening panel on the state of Hawaii innovation.
eCAFE is the official application for Course And Faculty Evaluations at the University of Hawaii. It is a UH system wide tool for faculty across all campuses to gather feedback from the students at the end of a course.