Meeting (#2) with Cindy Becker, School of English

Since my last meeting with Cindy, Karsten had made some progress with the prototype of the tagging widget. So I arranged to meet Cindy again, and invited Karsten along to observe the reaction what he had developed.

As in the initial pilot meeting with Karen Ayres, I asked about Cindy’s familiarity with the concept of tagging and the amount of content she had in her courses. We didn’t spend too long on this, as we had discussed some of the details in previous meetings. What did emerge though was that Cindy runs a very content-heavy course called “Communications at Work”, in which the sharing of bookmarks via the recommender function that Karsten has created could prove very useful.

Having seen and used the tool on our Sandbox server, Cindy had some useful questions and suggestions for us:

  • Would there be a way of tagging links left by students using the Recommender widget? (So if a student has left a link under one tag, could the instructor then associate it with another tag?)
  • Would there be a way of seeing all the links left in the Recommender by students? (i.e., not just by tag)
  • Could we somehow allow students to comment on one another’s links?
  • Could we have date- and time-stamps on links in the Recommender widget?

The first of these questions raises yet another question about duplicates — what’s a student to do if they have a link that they themselves want to associate with two tags? Post it twice? This is worth considering for now, though ultimately I believe more such questions will come from students, so it may be best to wait and see how it’s actually used.

Cindy also mentioned that although having tags contained within courses would actually most beneficial to her at the moment, she could see a lot of potential in being able to navigate materials across course via tags.

We left the meeting by saying that we would be in touch when more had been developed, especially as Cindy expressed an interest in some of the other widgets.

About Guy

I am currently Enhancement Officer (for Education Technologies) at the University of Reading. I am also studying for a Masters in Research at the University's School of Systems Engineering.
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