Rationale Paper

Theory-Practice-Application: My Academic Journey and Artifacts.

Jason Marconi
Business Program Director: McCann School of Business
                                                                  March 14, 2015
Boise State University

Introduction:  Rationale
My name is Jason Marconi; I have been working in in the education field for 8 years. I am the business program director for McCann School of Business. I teach associate degree granting curriculum in economics, small business, marketing, management, and other courses based on need. I also oversee nineteen adjunct instructors that teach business and general education courses.  Working day to day with students of varying ages, learning styles, and goals has made integrating technology into our classrooms an absolute must for driving student success. I am very comfortable with technology and spend a lot time finding that hidden application, website, or game gem. I enjoy that moment I find something I can share with my co-workers. The MET program has provided me an incredible opportunity to share ideas and resources with my staff. 

This paper will detail my work through the Masters of Education Technology program and the alignment work completed has with the 2012 Association for Educational Communications and Technology standards. The paper will detail each standard starting with content knowledge and ending with research and the associated projects and assignments that align with them. I will feature the standards briefly followed by a detailed explanation as to why the project or assignment chosen satisfies each. At the end of the paper will be a conclusion that offers a brief reflection followed by a synopsis of the growth this program as allowed for me in my professional career.

Standard 1: Content Knowledge

The AECT standard for content knowledge seeks to provide evidence that the candidate demonstrated knowledge necessary to create, use, assess, and manage theoretical and practical applications of educational technologies and processes. 

For this section, my projects focused on innovative ways to create instructional material and new ways to engage students in different learning environments using a variety of systems approaches. While almost every class detailed new ways to use educational technology, I focused on specific projects from the program for creating, using, evaluating, managing, and ethics. Below are the indicators for standard 1: content knowledge and the associated artifacts. 

The list of projects and artifacts used to demonstrate content knowledge are below:
Brief Description
For this assignment, we were tasked to create a lesson plan and real world virtual field trip to use in our professional class. We were to create this virtual field trip using our HTML and CSS coding skills being developed in the course.

This final project required students complete a lesson plan and develop a mobile game using a program called Gamesalad. Students were game developers as well as instructional designers for this project.

Using a drag and drop game development website called Sploder we were tasked to create an educational game for classroom purposes.  I created a game based on economic principles.
This project tasked students to create in HTML and CSS a mobile webpage dedicated to using mobile devices to take students through a lesson plan using various resources on the web.  I choose to use this assignment as a marketing project for students.
For this project, students were asked to use their HTML and CSS coding ability to create an interactive jigsaw lesson plan to use with our students. I chose a lesson on wealth and exchange. The entire web page was created with the lesson for the students in mind.
Students were tasked to research and define which elements from “The meaning of Educational Technology” are most important.  Students were to reflect which portions of the reading jumped out at them and reflect on it further through research.
This assignment asked students to take an academic journal article and write a commentary through blogging about the article.
This assignment asked students to prepare a real world, practical blogging proposal to take to administrators detailing plans to incorporate blogging in our classroom.

This project was a case study and assignment surrounding evaluation practices and assessments. Students were to read the case study based on Far West Laboratory and write a consulting report on the changes and evaluation procedures we would suggest and move forward with.
For the Netiquette project, students were tasked with creating a website through HTML and CSS coding to display the ethics surrounding online conduct and professional online etiquette
Students needed to research, create and assess what it takes to maintain and manage a positive digital footprint. This was to be adopted as an assignment that can be shared with our students to inform them of the importance our digital presence of professional career growth.

     1.     Creating:  Candidates demonstrate the ability to create instructional materials and learning environments using a variety of systems approaches.

Artifacts:  The evidence to demonstrate mastery I decided to use consists of an HTML/CSS coding project, final project, and educational game created for class. The reason to use the varying projects is that each demonstrates a different systems approach to learning. The virtual field trip project allowed me to create a field trip to war torn Syria for my students. The virtual field trip made it possible for students to visit in the comfort of our classroom. The flow of the website was something I created . Since I was intimately involved in the website development I was able to conceptualize the best approach in attaching a lesson plan. Instead of having a PowerPoint explain the history and importance of Syria, students were able to access a plethora of media and educational tools within the website itself. While creating the website, I decided to include the media for easy accessibility, which demonstrates my aptitude in creating material for classroom use beyond typical educational tools.   

The next project I included in this subset was a final project in EDTECH 536 Mobile Game Design for Educational purposes. The final project was an economics game that teaches students the concept of shortages and surpluses. This project allowed me to create from concept to application the idea of using a mobile game platform to teach an economics lesson.  Similar to creating a mobile application and game, I decided to include a project from our Educational Games and Simulation class. This project tasked students with using a program called Sploder to create an educational game. Again, I focused on the real world practicality of the game for the economics course I was teaching. This time I used the game to teach my students about supply and demand. The core of these two games housed the economic concepts I wished to teach the students, but my professional growth came from learning how to create these new environments and materials for the students as additional tools in the learning process. 

     2.  Using: Candidates demonstrate the ability to select and use technological resources and processes to support student learning and to enhance their pedagogy. 

Artifacts:   My two projects, building a mobile learning lesson and jigsaw lesson plan are the two projects used to demonstrate my growth in selecting and using technological resources to support students’ knowledge. Both lessons were created using HTML and CSS coding in EDTECH 502. Beyond learning how to code the websites themselves, we were tasked with using HTML and web page construction to build and support learning processes. The mobile learning lesson was based on a marketing class I was teaching.  The students were to follow a set of guidelines and different internet locations through the website to find marketing campaigns. Then, using only their phones they were to create their own marketing campaign.  This enabled students to use the technology that they have brought with them. The power of mobile learning for this project was the personalized use of the assignment. I found during this project that personalization plays an important role in mobile learning. As Prema Nedungadi and Raghu Raman(2012) writes, “mobile devices allow students to seamlessly switch  between forms of learning.  Mobile learning was individualized and adds flexibility to the classroom” (Nedungadi and Raman, 2012). 

In my class one student accessed the website and found a old nike campaign. Using the support from the mobile website that student then created a short Iphone video based on this historic nike campaign. The assignment demonstrated the students ability to use their mobile device as well as the website I created to enhance their understanding of marketing campaigns as well as what goes into developing new mobile focused commercials and advertisements. 

 The second project was a jigsaw lesson on economics of wealth and exchange. In this project, I created a lesson and a web page that tasked students with answering core economic concepts though research. From there students have to click on attached links and take their new found theory and decide which links and information best represent the answer to the economic concept they just learned. The jigsaw approach to finding their answers and then having to fully understand that answer in a broader stoke by attaching it to the information found on three different links helped enhance their pedagogy. This is because it takes a full understanding of the concept in order to be able to recognize it in the information associated with the links. 

      3.  Assessing/Evaluating: Candidates demonstrate the ability to assess and evaluate the effective integration of appropriate technologies and instructional materials. 

Artifacts:  For this artifact, I associated two assessment and evaluation projects. The first project  from EDTECH 501 demonstrates my ability to assess and define the meaning of educational technology. I was tasked to research and create a definition of Education Technology. One such definition we studied was “Educational technology is the study and ethical practice of facilitating learning and improving performance by creating, using, and managing appropriate technological processes and resources”. (Association for Educational Communications and Technology, 2004). This assignment gravitated naturally to an evaluative form of research. From this evaluation, I was able to distinguish three elements. Those elements “study”, “improving” and “performance” helped assess whether or not a more complete picture of education technology was needed. I then choose one of those elements to discuss further for the assignment. I choose the element “study” and evaluated its importance to the definition of educational technology.  Upon evaluation of this concept comparing what I have learned to numerous classroom management and activities I was currently engaging in, I was able to connect the theory to my economics classroom. The great depression is a defining moment in not only our history, but also in the economics field itself. Without this study and research, post-classical economics and our modern-day economy would be virtually nonexistent, or prone to more great depressions should similar conditions and events happen again.  Knowing the importance of an element and its sub-elements like “study” for me makes it one of the most significant aspects when defining educational technology, for not only its successes and opportunities, but also potential weaknesses and threats. This thought puts the perspective of defining Education Technology into a meaningful purpose for me. Prior to this research I was using technology in the classroom based on necessity and not structured around the assessment and evaluation of the “why” in its use. For example I was using an investment game in my finance class as a source of breaking up lectures. From this assignment I determined the importance of sitting down and deciding why I was using this in class, and why I should continue to use it. I then made an effort to justify its use based on the assessment and evaluation of its benefits for the students. 

The second artifact was from my EDTECH 597 Blogging course. This assignment was to create a commentary blog. I chose to review and evaluate the journal article “Using Technology to create a Dynamic Classroom Experience” by Bari Courts and Jan Tucker. The commentary tasked me to look at this article from a neutral perspective and find elements I agreed and disagreed with.  While writing the blog post was the key element in this assignment, the assessment and evaluation came to a complete circle when Dr. Barbour posed a question regarding my work.  He asked me to dig deeper and on a larger scale from what the writers were theorizing  in their article. This challenged me to evaluate on a deeper level for example at the end of this article I decided to located and research more into the elements Courts and Tucker were describing. I decided to pull more peer reviewed articles regarding this concepts and read up on current trends that were detailed in the paper. From there I evaluated this trending practices to my own classroom management and came up with something troubling. My adjuncts and I were using technology just to use it and without any form of student feedback to determine its effectiveness. I’m happy that this was something I could bring to the attention of other instructors as a professional growth moment for all of us. Dr. Barbours pushing to dig deeper added to the true value to this assignment. 

     4.   Managing: Candidates demonstrate the ability to effectively manage people, processes, physical infrastructures, and financial resources to achieve predetermined goals. 

Artifacts:   To demonstrate my mastery in the sub-standard “managing” I chose to include two artifacts. The first project was in my EDTECH 597 Blogging course. We were tasked with developing a blogging proposal for administrators. For this proposal to be successful, we needed to address the people and processes involved in its success to our administrators. I detailed the benefits of creating a blogging plan through research and statements such as “The student who usually talks very loud in the classroom and the student who is very timid have the same writing space to voice their opinion. Teachers and students alike feel the benefits that make blogging well worthwhile, if for no other reason than that blogs encourage students to write”(Downes, 2004). I needed to demonstrate the ability to manage the downfalls of blogging and so I created a campus liability and student release form.  This was a demonstration of managing the blogging process successfully.  I needed to detail the proposal in such a way that made learning how to manage people, processes, and infrastructure a must in order to be successful with this project as well as the real world applications it had. From presenting to the administration my plan to detailing its minimal budgetary constraints. The true success was when administrators unanimously voted to adopt the blogging policy for my economics class and opened the door to future plans involving bloggings use.

The second project I have listed was an evaluation project for EDTECH 505 Evaluation for Educators.  This project tasked me to master all the managing sub-standard skills. To be successful with this project we needed to detail an evaluation process for Far West Laboratories. In order for the project to be successful, we had to prove ourselves as a pretend consulting company. The project itself did not come right out and say we have to be effective at managing people, processes physical infrastructures, and financial resources to achieve predetermined goals, but the success of the case study problem hinged deeply on the mastery of all of those skills. From setting up a budget where we could not exceed $50,000 dollars to establishing a strict timeline for the evaluations success, our entire project was based on the mastery of our managing skills from beginning to end.

5.      Ethics: Candidates demonstrate the contemporary professional ethics of the field as defined and developed by the Association for educational communications and Technology.

Artifacts:  These two artifacts tackle the AECT standards of ethics by detailing a Netiquette policy and positive digital footprint developments. The first project about Netiquette was developed to pertain to our student body.  The netiquette rules were written for all students who will one day become professionals in their respective career choices.  I developed this web page to teach students the importance of understanding what netiquette is and what it has to do with their career goals.  This not only was a web page to explain how our actions on-line should be no different from our professional actions in person, but it also served as a great reminder to my how important professionalism in all aspects of our life is.  The mastery of this project came when deciding what quick tips to provide the students as well as demonstrating the contemporary professional ethics within our fiel. Through this research, I found some of the most important tips for netiquette that I could share with my students.

The second project dealt with creating a positive digital citizenship and the ethics that surround our online personalities. Much like the netiquette project the details in providing students with an ethical outline for conducting their online presence was a power reminder for both them and me.  This project tasked us to research and create a presentation that tackled all aspects of our digital footprint. One of the way I found to portray the ethical professional on line was using web 2.0 tools.

 "When you create links of your posts or website or blog, you publicize yourself online, thereby spreading your digital footprint. When you comment on any other post, you could link you name to another forum or blog where your name appears. This spreads your digital footprint like magic”(Nneka, 2012).

Sharing this research with my students along with the theory behind creating a positive digital footprint helped future career professionals understand its importance.

Standard 2: Content Pedagogy
The AECT standard for content pedagogy requires candidates develop as reflective practitioners able to demonstrate effective implementation of educational technologies and processes based on contemporary content and pedagogy. Below are the indicators as well as the artifacts associated with standard 2: content pedagogy. 

Brief Description
This project piece required students to create a webquest that can be used in our professional careers.  A webquest is an inquiry-oriented lesson format where students take to the web to find the answers to your questions and move the lesson forward. This project tasked us to create a multiple webpage lesson using HTML/CSS as well as a real world example of the lesson we would use in the webquest.  The webquest that I created was an economics lesson that involved blogging current events.
This project asked students to explore simulation games and their relevance (if any) to education. It tasked us to think about education and simulation games to come up with any similarities or differences. I reflected on simulation games that can be used in the classroom such as Stock Market simulators or small business simulators students can play to enhance learning of the concepts through safe practice.
This assignment tasked students with evaluating and researching different ways schools are using social media in projects and lessons. We were then apply the knowledge to the program Storify.  The idea was to find different schools using social media analyze and adopt ways we could use social media in our own professions through this research.
The Communities of Play reflection assignment asked students to read and reflect on what communities of play meant to our professional and personal experiences. We were then to create an expression of our thoughts in a video reflection or animation.  The reading correlated with a lot of classroom dynamic issues I was currently facing and served as a good base to help solve these issues.
For this assignment students needed to interpret and reflect on the thoughts surrounding the theory of “blowing up the gradebook”.  Students were to summarize and translate the idea to whether or not it was a good pedagogical approach or whether or not there was consensus enough for this to be a valid theory for educational use.
This assignment tasked students with evaluating narrative in games for educational purposes. Students needed to construct ideas on how to associate narrative in games for educational purposes.  The evaluation of narrative games was to find if we could associate educational purposing through the idea narrative in games represent. You were tasked with reflecting on your thoughts by providing research and supporting information.
This lesson-tasked student with focusing on a social media platform and explaining its educational purposes as well as how we use or would use it in our classroom.
For this project, students were to produce a two-month blogging plan that would detail how we were going to use blogging in our professional lives.  The plan was to be a detailed synopsis of how we are going to use what we learned in EDTECH 597 blogging to benefit or add value to our students learning experience in the real world.
This project asked students to read and analyze the 2013 ICT report. The focus was on the digital divide and digital inequality.  After reading and identifying what the information means and represents to us, we were to create a voice thread presentation explaining what we took away from the project. In this assignment, I was able to view my current location and student demographics in a new light that allowed for a clearer representation of the difficulties they face.
For this assignment, students were asked to provide a blog post commentary regarding an academic article.  The commentary I choose was Using technology to Create a Dynamic Classroom Experience. In this article and assignment, we reflected on the research and ethics surrounding technology use in the classroom. The article represented the positives in creating a dynamic experience for students using technology.

     1.   Creating: Candidates apply content pedagogy to create appropriate applications of processes and technologies to improve learning and performance outcomes. 

Artifact: The artifact used to demonstrates this indicator is the EDTECH 502 WebQuest project. This project demonstrates not only my ability to create an HTML/CSS webpage for educational purposes, but also demonstrates the creation of appropriate applications of process and technologies through the use of web page building for student lessons. The project tasked students with taking on a quest with different stops and tasks to complete. The students were to visit the webpage dedicated to blogging current events for an introduction to economics class. They were then to work through the introduction, task, process, evaluation, and conclusion tabs. These sections introduced and challenged the students to finish the assignment by using the webpage resources. There was also a section created and dedicated to teachers. This page detailed the lesson plan regarding blogging and economics that follows the web quest format.  The project tasked me with developing an outcome to our current events learning objective that is standard for my schools ECON101 class in the syllabi. 

       2.    Using: Candidates implement appropriate educational technologies and processes based on appropriate content pedagogy.
Artifacts: One of the core values I have learned in my time as an EDTECH student was not to use technology for the sake of using technology in the classroom.  The idea of appropriate educational technologies came from research and theory to support why we are using what we were learning in our own class experiences.  This is one of the reasons I choose to use the EDTECH 532 Simulation in Education project. For this project it may have been easy to just say “yes, education and simulation games go hand in hand”, but that wouldn’t be a good enough reason to use simulation games in the classroom.  Using the right simulation game for the right class is a key component to understand the appropriateness of education technologies for learning outcomes. One challenge I was faced with was choosing the right simulation game for my business classes to compare as being educationally appropriate. During the research portion of this assignment, I found how Jeremy Hall(1996) describes business simulations:

These simulations involve modelling all or most business functions (marketing, finance,
operations and R & D) and are often described under the blanket category of "total
enterprise" simulations or management or business games. They date back to 1957
when a group at the Rand Corporation (Bellman et al, 1957) created what is perhaps
the first computerized business game (simulation).(Hall 1996)

This  solidified that the idea of using simulation games for educational purposes has been tested and approved for years or at least since 1957. After doing the research and exploring the simulation genre, I wrote into our small business class the www.thesmallbusinessgame.co.nz. This is a small business simulation game that gives the students an incredible perspective on some of the difficulties a small business owner faces in a fast-paced environment. The reception and student achievement through using this medium was a great success. 

The second artifact I want to include was my project titled: Learning, Ideas, and applications about using social media in my teaching through project research. The central theme around this project was to research and judge the effectiveness of using social media for classroom use. The brilliant part about this assignment was not just to research the different ways other educators are using social media, but also to build our own assignments for the classes we teach around some of their ideas.  The project I found and used as inspiration was a digital portfolio project. I used this with my business students with great success. It was the first time on our campus we started a positive digital footprint process with the students. This was a great success because the career services director saw a positive change in the way our students began conducting their online profiles. This helped create the appropriate content pedagogy. 

      3.  Assessing/evaluating:  Candidates demonstrate an inquiry process that assesses the adequacy of learning and evaluates the instruction and implementation of educational technologies and processes grounded in reflective practice.

Artifacts: The first artifact I chose was a reflection project on Communities of Play: Play ecosystems. This reflection was made even more challenging by having to create a video representation of our reflection. This reflection did lend itself to some important insights to a classroom dynamic problem I was facing. Much like play ecosystems I was able to distinguish personality types along with play style that was happening in my class from a student perspective and not just a “player” perspective. I was also able to distinguish what the author wrote about in the assignment piece detailing the changes in cinema and movies to mean similar theory and practice changes in the world of instructional design. With this reflection, I was able to tie key components we find in Communities of play to similar components in successful instructional design and classroom management. 

The next artifact was a reflection on what it could mean to education and educators if we were to “blow up the gradebook” as Dr. Haskell lectures on.  While a moving and an inspiring idea, I challenged the readiness of some educators to do such a thing and the repercussions this could have on equity in education. The equity in education produces. According to the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development, equity in education has two dimensions.

The first is fairness, which basically means making sure that personal and social circumstances-for example gender, socio-economic status or ethnic origin-should not be an obstacle to achieving educational potential. The second is inclusion, in other words ensuring a basic minimum standard of education for all- for example that everyone should be able to read, write and do simple arithmetic (Field, 2007, P.2).

Upon reflection of the difficulties facing educational equity, ideas like blowing up the gradebook make sense on a larger scale. With a system that already has it share of breakdowns ideas like blowing up the grade book may at first seem radical. Through the research and evaluation of these ideas, backed by some of the more frustrating breakdowns in education, I was able to draw meaning parallels to fixing some of those problems by incorporating some of the ideals brought up in blowing up the grade book.  “We’ve grown up in a system that urges us to believe that some kids are smarter than others and that somehow we can accurately sort this out” (Fisher, 2004, P.1). Through reflecting on Dr. Haskell’s theory, I was able to establish meaningful takeaways in a new way of educating and course management. 

The third reflective project that I feel shows my mastery in assessing adequacy of learning and implementation in reflective practices is a reflection project on narrative in games. This project tasked us with exploring a game and its narrative. The overarching theme was if these narratives have any bearing in the education world much like movies or books are used. The idea to draw this connection started with focusing on the research, which lead to the ongoing debate between Ludologists and Narratologists. This was to accurately be able to create where I fell and the connections I could make in my own education as well as teaching based on both parties beliefs. As I began to unravel narrative in games for education purposes, one quote really stuck with me through the use of games for educational purposes. The idea was the power of the narrative and storytelling. As Henry Jenkins says “If some games tell stories, they are unlikely to tell them in the same ways that other media tell stories”. (Jenkins, 2004) One takeaway I found from that statement was in an ethics and leadership class. I used this research and the idea of games telling story differently than movies and books and allowed my class to play through a section of the walking dead game. This was a section where players were given a difficult choice. The class had to explain why they choose the way they did. The discussion surrounding this was an excellent teachable moment that students felt engaged in because that had to actually play through. 

   4.      Managing:  Candidates manage appropriate technological processes and resources to provide supportive learning communities, create flexible and diverse learning environments, and develop and demonstrate appropriate content pedagogy.

Artifacts:   The first artifact that demonstrates using resources to provide supportive learning communities and flexibility is a project dedicated to detailing using YouTube as a growing educational tool. This assignment tasked me to write a brief lesson plan explaining to students the beginning steps to creating and searching through YouTube. YouTube within the right educational contexts creates a diverse learning environment.  In order to make the most of this environment I then created a lesson plan to use with students to help them explore YouTube and find economics videos to help in their own lessons.  The students were then to embed the YouTube videos they found into their blog. By leaving comments within the video or blog, students were engaging in new types of supportive learning communities.  Finally, to demonstrate this as appropriate pedagogy the students themselves were to reflect by making a YouTube video about using YouTube in the class. The reflections were positive and students explained it was a nice change of pace from a traditional economics class. 

The second artifact details a two-month personal blogging plan to use within our own professional career. This project allowed me to continue to manage and understand the technology and educational resources blogging can provide.  By creating this plan, I was able to work blogging into all my classes as an appropriate source of information that creates a flexible and diverse learning environment. Instead of bringing in newspaper, articles or links to marketing videos my class was able to have a blog to share and discuss these same elements.

     5.   Ethics: Candidates design and select media, technology, and processes that emphasize the diversity of our society as a multicultural community. 

Artifacts:  One of the foundations of using technology is having access to what is required in order to use it for educational or personal purposes. When discussing student success and achieving a more varied instructional design approach that includes the options for technological tools we cannot forget that a digital divide exists that prohibits some students in socio-economic classes from gaining access to some educational technology tools. A project that shed light on this problem that emphasizes the diversity of our society as a multicultural community was the EDTECH 501 Digital Divide and Digital Inequality project.  This topic has been in debate at my school because some feel that mandating a introduction to computers class for all students their first semester seems to make sense while others fear it will segregate some students who cannot afford Microsoft office on top of their other first semester books and programs.  For this assignment, I focused on my non-traditional student population as a focal point for inequality. I explained in voice thread the sense of unpreparedness students feel their first semester because of computer and technology integration.  To demonstrate the ethics that emphasize diversity and processes that promote that diversity I detailed a two-part solution to combating this inequality for new students. The first part was to add tutoring and workshop resources for computer and technology basics free of charge.  The second part would be class scheduling so that their classes were not all technology or computer based right from the start.
The second artifact I used was again the project from EDTECH 597 titled using technology to create a dynamic classroom experience. This project as I spoke about before focused on creating dynamic environments through the design and selection of media and technology that could reach students from all populations.  The article and reflection focused on using technology in class as an alternative learning tool instead of expecting the students to have access to technology at home.  The ideals in this paper spoke about how students who are hands-on learners can benefit from the selection of appropriate media and technology.

Standard 3: Learning Environments
The AECT standard for learning environments looks for candidates to demonstrate the facilitation of learning by creating, using, evaluating and managing effective learning environments.  The projects used are all examples of standard 3 with a focus on the indicators for learning environments. Below are the indicators as well as the artifacts associated with standard 3: learning environments.

Brief Description
This project was a comprehensive final project that took all aspects of our instructional design course and merged them with a real world practical instructional design project. I choose to design a Retention course. The project included a variety of ID models, assessments and structure. After completing this project I had a more complete view of the approach designers must take in order to ensure success.
For this project we were challenged to research and find pre-existing learning theories and mash them together to create our own new theory based on what mattered to us from the theories we’ve found. This project required students to take an analytical and subjective approach to the different learning theories that exist while trying to create a new theory that meant something to our professional lives.
This assignment discussed gamifiying education and asked students to defend, discuss, challenge,  or criticize what gaming in education can or cannot do. The idea was to then reflect and write upon our thoughts and illustrations by talking about what is important to remember when gamifiying education. 
For this assignment, students watched a Ted Talk lecture about 7 ways video games engage the brain. Students were to share the psychological effects they learned about in a reflection and make meaning out of it in their own personal professional lives for education purposes. Students wrote a reflection on the points of emphasis that can be used in the education industry or mattered to us in our personal lives.
As part of the overall Instructional Design project students were takes with learning and researching John Keller’s Motivational Categories of the ARCS model. After learning about the categories and subcategories, students then wrote out their own instructional design process for their project idea and class or workshop in the process questions table in the ARCS model. The information had to be directly related to your project with real world application as well as satisfy both the sub and regular categories such as perceptual arousal, variability all the way to natural consequences and equity. The justification for why you choose to include certain aspects of information and instruction within your project had to help satisfy the ARCS model process.
This assignment was associated with the larger overall final project for EDTECH 505 Evaluation for Educators. We were tasked to create realistically applicable evaluation sheets to be used in our final project. The evaluation had to make sense in the overall scheme of your project and add value to your evaluation.  This demonstrates the use of evaluation for the final project as well as using google docs to create evaluative forms such as learning observations, interview questionnaires, and Range evaluations.
This project tasked students to define technology use planning and read the National Educational Technology plan 2010. From there we were tasked with sharing our thoughts on the research by answering whether or not we agree with certain sections of the plan. We also were tasked with interpreting the plans comments such as “effective technology plans focus on applications not technology”.Finally the assignment asked students to reflect on their personal and professional endeavors  to share their experiences with technology use planning and the outcome.
The school evaluation summary asked us to conduct a Maturity Benchmark survey and evaluation summary for our current employers. After conducting the research to how we felt technology was being implemented in our companies or schools we were then to reflect on the findings. This project took the theory we were working with technology and immediately but a real world application spin on it that mattered in my professional life. It was a very rewarding project that shed light not only for me but the administrators I shared it with. 
This project was to apply our HTML and CSS coding skills to a website that focused on informing an audience about Web Accessibility.We needed to research what web accessibility was along with what assisted technology was. From there we were to come up with a set of links to include in our website. On top of demonstrating the research and knowledge, we were asked to create the HTML and CSS coding in a web accessible form.
The copyright project tasked students with informing an audience about what copyrighting is. In order to do this we were to create a webpage that acted as a scavenger hunt hub for a student activity. We were to create a location that was important to learning about copywriting and then create questions associated with that webpage. By the end of creating this activity as well as the webpage, we came away with a better understanding of copyrighting.
The gaming info graphic reflection was an assignment that had us read a well created data graphic and reflect on it.We were to leave a blog posting about where our personal life story intersects with the infographics history and what, if any, ideas it triggered concerning the game concept we were developing as a project for the class.

     1.  Creating: Candidates create instructional design products based on learning principles and research-based best practices.

Artifacts:  One of the best artifacts that demonstrate mastery in the standard 3-creating indicator would be my EDTECH 503 Instructional design final project.  This project blended research, learning principles, and processes in order for us to create an instructional design product that could be used in a real world application. The project I undertook was a staff development program called “retention for student success.” In this project as you can see I detailed process, analysis, planning, learning principles, evaluation, research, and outcomes modeled after real world data. 
The second artifact I used for this sub-indicator was a project where the students were asked to create a mash-up learning theory. While the first artifact tasked us to create an instructional design product that was a realistic representation of something we would use in our professional career, this project was a little more conceptual. The mastery for this project came from the amount of research we needed to dive into in order to create a mash-up learning theory.  Once we found the corresponding research, we were then tasked to create our own mash up learning principle. This mash up was an instructional design product that satisfied both the creation of a artifact based on learning principle and research-based practices. 

      2.   Using: Candidates make professionally sound decisions in selecting appropriate processes and resources to provide optimal conditions for learning based on principles, theories, and effective practices.

Artifacts:  The research portion of our classes made sure we were selecting what we felt was appropriate resources and processes in order to make sound decisions. Before tackling gaming in education one project that challenged me to understand theory and principle behind gamifiying education was a project in EDTECH 532. That project title was “What is important to remember when gamifiying education”.  Before this research and reflection into the world of gamification for educational purposes, I am sure I would have misunderstood the learning purpose that supports this learning model.  After this project and associated video clip, I felt more confident in understanding the effectiveness in gamification. Through this research and my own learning I came away with a new philosophy that detailed one of the most important aspects to remember when gamifiying education.  For me that is to remember the outcomes should always be the persistent reasoning for gamification. Those passionate about gamification as a learning model all seem to share this feeling of importance. This signals to me I will have made gamification in my class not out of novelty but out of sound decision making in the positive outcome for my students through its use.  The mastery for me came upon my own a-ha moment when the final takeaway from this assignment was that no matter what I do in the classroom with gamification or any learning theory it should have purpose, outcome and draw meaning. 

My second artifact continues this self-realization on purpose, outcome and meaning through a reflection on educational gaming.  Both of these projects allowed me to reflect and build my own personal education philosophy through theory and principles surrounding gaming in education. This assignment or quest asked me to watch Tom Chatfield’s 7 ways video games engage the brain.  This was the first assignment I started to draw correlations between game design success and instructional design success.  I also began to adopt the power of a reward-based environment for the classroom. The mastery came from connecting these principals to social constructivism where I started connecting optimal conditions for learning and the power of game design principals in instructional design and the classroom. 

      3.  Assessing/Evaluating: Candidates use multiple assessment strategies to collect data for informing decisions to improve instructional practice, learner outcomes, and the learning environment. 

Artifacts:  The first project that demonstrates my mastery in using multiple assessment strategies is from EDTECH 503. It is the ARCS table assignment that has assessment and data collection at its core.  While almost every project in the program had an assessment and data driven component, the ARCS table tasked me with taking assessment and data and finding meaning in that information. Once we found the meaning, we were to detail why we would include this information into our final Instructional Design project.  The final Instructional Design project could not have been completed or successful without the proper use of multiple assessment strategies and data collection in order to improve the practice, outcome and learning of both the learner and environment. 

The second artifact I would like to include comes from EDTECH 505’s final project.  This final project had a significant data collection portion. The importance in forming a full circle evaluation cannot be properly implemented if it does not include accurate and appropriate data collections.  In order to create and track this data. we needed to create various assessment and collection material both formative and summative.  As you can see from the artifact, I needed to create various interview questions, observation sheets, and other data collection tools in order to ensure my project was grounded in the real world.

      4.  Managing: Candidates establish mechanisms for maintaining the technology infrastructure to improve learning and performance. 

Artifacts:   For this indicator I chose the projects from EDTECH 501 that helped establish whether or not my campus had an appropriate infrastructure and whether or not that was helping or hurting my student population.  It was important to establish what benchmarks existed in the education industry when talking about technology use and it is planning. The technology use planning overview assignment and school evaluation summary gave me incredible insight into this by having us read the national educational technology plan.  This plan and program helped paint the picture of where my campus was falling behind and where it was meeting or exceeding expectations.  Before the summary, we familiarized ourselves with the government’s plan for technology integration.  After reading the plan we were asked how this might be an effective and powerful resources for technology use planning.   I found during this project I agreed with the statement, "For every, what should I do? a teacher must ask, "Why Should I do it?" technology use in the classroom is no exception, (Shoffner, 2007). This question established the need for mechanisms and for maintain technology infrastructure, which the school evaluation summary helped put into action. By reaching out to my campus stakeholders involved in our day-to-day operations I was able to gain a clear understanding of what goes into our technology department and the IT infrastructure that leads to our operations. I was able to establish this both from a budgetary and user stand point, both of which helped in my overall understanding of what it takes to run a campus.  Completing the maturity benchmark survey and school evaluation summary demonstrates my competence in creating and maintaining technology infrastructure to improve learning and performance at my campus. 

     5.   Ethics: Candidates foster a learning environment in which ethics guide practice that promotes health, safety, best practice, and respect for copyright, fair use, and appropriate open access to resources. 

Artifacts:  The artifacts I will use to demonstrate my mastery of the Ethics sub indicator for Standard 3 are two projects from EDTECH 502. The first is the web accessibility project. This project focused on creating an assisted technology overview that focused on the ADA and equal protection and access to public accommodations for people with a variety of disabilities.  This website demonstrated my ethical approach to being a proactive contributor to helping those students who would need this type of technology and assistive technology in order for them to achieve success. The open access assisted technology resources allow those with varying disabilities to use tools that can help in their success. 

The second project was designed for student us in learning about copyrighting and raising awareness around fair use and copyright. The video embedded is a Fair(y) use tale that shows students the importance of fair use. The project not only was informative about copyright and fair use but also included a treasure hunt surrounding different information sources on the web about copyrighting. This treasure hunt was an interactive approach to answering important questions about international copyright law, the 1976 copyright act and other issues surrounding fair use.  The entire website and project through its creation to real world application was to ensure my mastery in the ethics surrounding best practices in copyright and fair use. 

      6. Diversity of Learners: Candidates foster a learning community that empowers learners with diverse backgrounds, characteristics and abilities. 

Artifacts:  The artifact I choose is a project that focuses on the potential using video games in the classroom could have on reaching students with different characteristics, backgrounds and abilities in order to empower them as learners.  This was a project where I wrote a reflection on a gaming infographic. The idea of using games in education reaches all learning styles through narrative, hand-on, and visual applications.  These alone foster a learning community that promotes the diversity of learners sub indicator. The reflection on this assignment led me to research and understand the power of gaming to create collaboration, achievement, and epic meaning for students.  If not every student were to benefit from gaming I found myself asking what if that “one” student who wouldn’t “get” the subject any other way managed to have an A-HA moment while playing a game. I thought to myself after reflecting on this infographic for assignment that can be a powerful way to empower learners with diverse backgrounds, characteristics and abilities.

Standard 4: Professional Knowledge and Skills
The AECT standard for professional knowledge and skills requires candidates to collaborate with their peers and subject matter experts to analyze learners, develop and design instruction, and evaluate its impact on learners. Below you will find the indicators along with the projects associated with standard 4: professional knowledge and skills.
Brief Description
The Real Time and Live Virtual Professional Development project was assigned to give students a chance to experience the power of social media and technology as professional development tools used to network with subject matter experts in our field using social media platforms. We were to attend live twitter sessions and webinars and reflect on our experiences and the justification for using these mediums as professional development.
The Jamestown versus Roanoke assignment was based on a live virtual class meeting we had attended the Tuesday before this assignment was due.  In this class, the students were broken into two sections Jamestown and Roanoke. After an introduction and history about both Jamestown and Roanoke we were then tasked with playing the role of settler in Minecraft to experience the lives of those we have just read about in history. The reflection tasked us to make sense of virtual worlds being used in this way to teach history lesson plans and what we took away from the experiences. To me it was one of the many great memories and assignments we had.
This project was a comprehensive project that tasked the students with building a lesson plan around a game activity and theory we learned in class. From there we were to reflect on this experience and create blog post as well as a 20-minute lesson plan to be shared via google hangout with our class or in second life. The project I choose was to create an open source website funded through kickstarter that housed a mass database of board, commercial, indie, console, handled, and PC games with attached lesson plans for teachers to use.
The blog list assignment was to create a list within the blogging platform. It was our choice as what to include in our lists. I choose to create a list of applications that could benefit instructors and teachers for classroom to productivity purposes.
The media review assignment was a comprehensive overview of all reading and course work in a reflective 33-slide power point. We were tasked with tackling questions posed throughout the course and provide a visual representation of that theory. A difficult but powerful assignment that took theory and practicality in our real lives and challenged us the students to provide a visual representation.
This reflection assignment was part of a larger class project where students were tasked with creating a game for educational purposes using a program called sploder. We were to become comfortable with the game design aspects and then create the game with educational purpose in mind.  I then reflected on the instructional design and application that went into creating a game for educational purposes. I choose to use this game as an actual economics class lesson. It had real world practicality and taught us a lot about not just game development but how we can tackle classroom engagement and design.
This final assignment in EDTECH 543 was create an assessment and evaluation through reflection of the entire course.  The project was to cover our professional and personal growth through the semester with using social media as a tool to enhance our professional careers and growth in the classroom and with students.
A comprehensive final project for EDTECH 505 students demonstrated the planning, detail, theory, and application being a successful evaluator requires. The project covered an extensive scope of evaluation theory and practical use within our industry. Students were tasked with forming and executing an evaluation on a real world project or professional situation that needed to be evaluated. From beginning to end, the entire project covered an entire semesters worth of work and real world use for the evaluation.  
The Real Time and Live Virtual Professional Development project was assigned to give students a chance to experience the power of social media and technology as professional development tools used to network with subject matter experts in our field using social media platforms.  We were to attend live twitter sessions and webinars and reflect on our experiences and the justification for using these mediums as professional development.
This project was to apply our HTML and CSS coding skills to a website that focused on informing an audience about Web Accessibility.  We needed to research what web accessibility was along with what assisted technology was.  From there we were to come up with a set of links to include in our website. On top of demonstrating the research and knowledge, we were asked to create the HTML and CSS coding in a web accessible form.
This project asked students to read and analyze the 2013 ICT report. The focus was on the digital divide and digital inequality.  After reading and identifying what the information means and represents to us, we were to create a voice thread presentation explaining what we took away from the project. In this assignment, I was able to view my current location and student demographics in a new light that allowed for a clearer representation of the difficulties they face.
For this assignment, students were asked to provide a blog post commentary regarding an academic article.  The commentary I choose was Using technology to Create a Dynamic Classroom Experience. In this article and assignment, we reflected on the research and ethics surrounding technology use in the classroom. The article represented the positives in creating a dynamic experience for students using technology.
For the Netiquette project students were tasked with creating a website through HTML and CSS coding to display the ethics surrounding online conduct and professional online etiquette
Students needed to research, create and assess what it takes to maintain and manage a positive digital footprint. This was to be adopted as an assignment that can be shared with our students to inform them of the importance our digital presence for professional career growth.

     1. Collaborative Practice: Candidates collaborate with their peers and subject matter experts to analyze learners, develop and design instruction, and evaluate its impact on learners. 

Artifact:   One project that forced me out of my comfort zone and into the world of social collaboration was my EDTECH 543 Real Time and Live Virtual Professional Development.  This was my first experience with the vast world of social media collaboration amongst educators. The first collaborative environment was a scheduled twitter hangout and chat. The #connectED twitter chat brought together teachers, administrators, and subject matter experts for two hours to discuss current trends in learning, instructional design and evaluation.  From there I found the #edctechchat which is a chat I still frequent. Here subject matter experts from around the world participate in a theme based discussion every week.  In the #edtechchat I was surrounded by knowledgeable experts that brought to light trends in education technology.  From autonomous professional growth, BYOD, growing PLN’s, curation, collaboration, and using social media to connect, I entered a world where the power of social media brought some truly inspiring experts together to share their thoughts.  After reflecting on the power of twitter as a collaborative tool, I was then asked for the assignment to participate in webinars to enhance our professional growth.   The webinars I participated in and reflected about in this assignment were Bring your own Device, Anchor standards and common cores, and Strategies for mobile selection.  The webinars themselves were not didactic they actually involved a heavy engagement from viewers in the chat window. This collaboration left me with weekly professional growth opportunities that have helped enhance my own personal career goals.

The second project I choose for collaborative practice was a hands-on assignment where 
collaboration was a focal point for us as the students. The end goal for this project was to experience the power of collaboration in a virtual world so that we can better evaluate its impact on learners.  The project took place in Minecraft. The virtual space of Minecraft was made to resemble colonial Jamestown and Roanoke. The central theme was for us the students to be dropped in one of the location and survive together.  Victory came to those who collaborated and worked together. After this class we reflected about what it meant to collaborate and what was different from real and virtual space on the impact of learning.  We were exposed to a different type of instructional design during this lesson that opened my eyes to the power of a alternative learning environment such as Minecraft. Since this incredible project, I have since adjusted our design approach in management class to reflect the collaborative projects Minecraft can offer. 

       2.  Leadership: Candidates lead their peers in designing and implementing technology-supported learning. 

Artifacts:   The project I choose for leadership was my final project in EDTECH 532. For this project, I created a website that is dedicated to open source lesson plans surrounding PC, mobile, console, and board games. The website has tabs where instructors can submit their lesson plan idea as well as an area to view all games with attached lesson plans for open source use. I created this website with the idea to help spread the power of game play in education to my peers to help in implementing technology supported learning.  For the reflection of this assignment, I focused on explaining why 21st century educators need to work together in order to make technology a valuable tool in education. 

The second project I wanted to use was a simple list project we needed to do in my EDTECH 597 blogging class.  This assignment was to get us use to the blogging platform and using web supported material to reach our reading audience. The list I decided to make was for my peers to help in designing and implementing technology supported learning. I did this by making a comprehensive list of applications and programs that make design and implementation easier to do. From Evernote to Dropbox, the list featured ideas for creating lesson plans and managing classroom. 

       3.  Reflection on Practice: Candidates analyze and interpret data and artifacts and reflect on the effectiveness of the design, development and implementation of technology-supported instruction and learning to enhance their professional growth

Artifacts:   The first project I choose for sub indicator 3 in standard for was my EDTECH 505 media review quiz. This was a thirty-three slide reflection on the course and corresponding textbook chapters.  In order to fully grasp the concepts and reflect on an analytical level, we were to choose a corresponding visual and then answer the question as well as explain why we chose the visual. This type of reflection and assignment challenged me to understand the concepts from a deeper level. Rather than reflecting simply in words, the challenge of finding the appropriate visual put a lot of emphasis on full understanding.  The reflection slide in the assignment summed up what we covered so far. I took the most away from this assignment from having to interpret data and artifact from an evaluation standpoint.  

My next project I chose a reflection on a game we created for EDTECH 532.  This reflection was different from my evaluation reflection because I was taking away how game design and instructional design support similar goals and outcomes.  In this reflection, I reflected on my first experience developing effective design and implementation of technology supported instruction. This was done throughout the power of creating a game to play for educational purposes.  Having to think of the player and student outcome for the best possible scenario in the classroom was a pivotal moment that enhanced my professional growth. 

The last artifact I will use is my final course reflection for EDTECH 543 Social Networking for educators.  I think it is important to note, I was not an avid social media contributor at the beginning of this course. I had to create a Facebook account specifically for this class, and I was pretty much using twitter the wrong way. I was an observer of social media instead of a contributor. So what happened that made me a contributor? It was the ease of having someone like our Professor and a course that showed you the professional side of social media, and how it is relevant. This alone enhanced my own professional growth where I now weekly contribute to professional social media.

      4.  Assessing/Evaluating: Candidates design and implement assessment and evaluation plans that align with learning goals and instructional activities

Artifacts:   One of the best examples of my master in substandard 4 would be the entire EDTECH 505 final project.  I was tasked with not only implementing assessment and evaluation to align with learning goals, but I had to do it in a real world scenario with my economics class. The fact that this final project had to be rooted in an actual professional evaluation made it a perfect artifact for this standard.  The evaluation planning process was a semesters worth of build up that led to a comprehensive evaluation of gamifiying my economics class. The budget assessment, student satisfaction assessments and evaluation led to a great dialogue with my administrators over the possibility of adding new elements to our syllabus and giving more instructors academic freedom.
The second artifact I used was my assessment and evaluation of real time and virtual professional development. During this assignment I evaluated the effectiveness of online professional growth and how I could align seminars and twitter chats to classroom learning goals and instructional activities.  This assessment was unquie because I have never before used social media in such a context. 

      5.  Ethics: Candidates demonstrate ethical behavior within the applicable cultural context during all aspects of their work and with respect for the diversity of learners in each setting. 

Artifacts: The artifacts I’ve decided to use for this category all have ethical behavior within the cultural context of learners using technology. The projects and assignments I’ve decided to use cover web accessibility, the digital divide, netiquette, and creating a positive digital footprint. The web accessibility project allowed for the mastery to show the value in creating a web accessible format for respect of the diversity of the learners especially those that fall under ADA guidelines.  The digital divide assignment demonstrated my understanding of the importance for students to be connected as well as the understanding for those students who are not connected and what it means as an educator. 
The next assignment details the appropriate use for technology to create dynamic experience.  This assignment was a reflection on the power technology has to create a diverse classroom.  In this diverse classroom, the respect for the diversity of learners is even more apparent.  Using technology to reach students in a variety of ways instead of didactic lectures was a meaningful takeaway.  The netiquette project focused on ethical behavior within cultural context. This project details what is appropriate and inappropriate forms of online professionalism.  The positive digital footprint assignment covered similar issues of appropriateness via students’ online profiles and social media.  These assignments I feel are good indicators of exploring and understanding our leadership and ethical role in the classroom.  “Educators are responsible for serving as positive role models for students, not only in the physical classroom but also in the digital world.  This can be especially tough for educators who use social media for both personal and professional reasons”(Hewson, 2013)

Standard 5: Research
The AECT standard for research looks to make sure candidates explore, evaluate, synthesize, and apply methods of inquiry to enhance learning and improve performance. The assignments and projects associated with this standard all have strong core components that focus on research methodology and evaluation to improve learning and performance.  Below you will find the indicators and artifacts associated with standard 5: research.
Brief Description
The EdTech 504 learning theory paper tasked students with researching and providing an overview for a major school of thought in learning. From there, we were tasked with researching the theory, major tenants, contributors, application and references.
For this project we were challenged to research and find pre-existing learning theories and mash them together to create our own new theory based on what mattered to us from the theories we’ve found. This project required students to take an analytical and subjective approach to the different learning theories that exist while trying to create a new theory that meant something to our professional lives.
This EDTECH 503 assignment tasked students with researching instructional design ‘s history, models, and learning theories associated with the process. We were to produce visual metaphors as well as explanations to major components within instructional design.
EDTECH 504: Research Paper

The final project for EDTECH 504 challenged students to research and write an academic paper to be peer reviewed by fellow students. The paper should focus on a major school of thought and supporting academic peer reviewed articles to be used in your writing about the subject matter.
For this EDTECh 532 assignment students were tasked with reflecting on a article written about video game design psychology and technology in the guardian and provide feedback about  how this can relate to video games in education. Through our reflection we were asked to provide references to other articles we would use to provide support to our opinion.
The EDTECH 597 assignment “Blogging as Pedagogic Practice Thoughts” students were to read Marcus O’Donnell’s article Blogging as a Pedagogic Practice: Artefact and Ecology, and then share a reflective blog post regarding our takeaways from the article. We were to provide reference to any outside material that aided us in completion of the project as well as produce an in-depth reflection about the reading and our thoughts for blogging as a pedagogic practice.
The goal of this assignment was to define play. The idea was to research and theorize how we can define play and why it would benefit academia to have a definition of play. We were to provide reference and research to support our definition both modern and historic approaches.
The EDTECH 543 social media policy project was to create a policy for our day time profession if none exists. We were to research, plan, and evaluate social media policies and then create a proposal for our school to follow.
The EDTECH 504 annotated bibliography was to take a topic that interested us individually along with major schools of learning theory and create an annotated bibliography of peer reviewed journal articles that can be used to challenge or support our original thesis on the topic.
Students were tasked to research and define which elements from “The meaning of Educational technology” are most important.  Students were to reflect which portions of the reading jumped out at them and reflect on it further through research
Students needed to research, create and assess what it takes to maintain and manage a positive digital footprint. This was to be adopted as an assignment that can be shared with our students to inform them of the importance our digital presence for professional career growth.

      1.  Theoretical Foundations: Candidates demonstrate foundational knowledge of the contribution of research to the past and current theory of educational communications and technology.

Artifacts:  The first artifact I feel demonstrates my foundational knowledge of the contribution of research to the past and current theory of educational technology is a project in EDTECH 504. The learning theory paper instructed us to provide an overview for a major school of thought in learning. From there we were tasked with researching the theory, major tenants, contributors, application, and references.  I decided to overview social constructivism theory under the constructivism school of thought.  Another EDTECH 504 project that required an in-depth look into the past and current research theory of education technology was our final project. For this project, I choose to research the foundations of connectivism, constructivism and social constructivism. I choose to research any common links found to those theories and video games.  During this project, the research portion was the most critical part to a successful paper.  We needed to support and include all forms of relevant research that was pertinent to our central theme and topic. 
I feel that both EDTECH projects are key indicators to this category but also included an assignment I used for another subcategory.  The mash-up learning theory required an extensive look into historical learning theories so that we could mash them up and make our own.  This led to research spanning all timelines and disciplines in order to find a theory that was best suited for our own educational theories.

      2.  Method: Candidates apply research methodologies to solve problems and enhance practice.
Artifacts:  The first project I choose for this category required the use of research to form an educated opinion and enhance the practice of using video games for educational purposes. Instead of being a weak sense, critical thinking after reading the article about the seduction of video games we were research and apply our finding to a critical reflection of why we felt the article was accurate or inaccurate.  In the article, Keith Stuart supports that games are effective because failure is okay. During my research I found a similar notion in an article titled It’s a Good Score! Just a Bad Grade (1989), where authors Canady and Hotchkiss list twelve common problems with how student success is typically evaluated including. 

“Varying grading scales, worshipping grade averages, failing to match testing and teaching, ambushing students with pop quizzes, penalizing students for taking risks, and inconsistent grading criteria. The writers suggest that if schools are going to help the ever increasing number of at risk students there must be greater emphasis on providing opportunities for students to succeed”(Canady & Hotchkiss 1989).
Having to find the research  to support our opinion taught me a valuable lesson in research methodologies to solve problems and enhance my professional practice.  Similarly, to the seduction of video games assignment I chose to include my EDTECH 597 blogging as a pedagogic practice assignment, which challenged me to do the same except instead of video games it was blogging for educational purposes. Again, research played a pivotal role in forming accurate information that was both critical in thought and research-backed judgment.
      3.  Assessing/Evaluating: Candidates apply formal inquiry strategies in assessing and evaluating processes and resource for learning and performance.

Artifacts:  The artifact I wanted to use was from a reflection we were asked to write revolving around a class session in a virtual world.  This reflection was all about defining play. I became a little obsessed with my inability to pinpoint what about play was so intoxicating for those who participate in it and how we could use this in the educational medium.  In order to get to the bottom of defining play I applied formal inquiry strategies in assessing and evaluating processes and resources for learning and performance center around the theme of play. This took me to some of the earliest theories of play and later what some have still struggled to define.  An example of such inquiry I found was from John Huizinga who discussed a new understand of play as an activity that exists only for its own sake.

“According to Huizinga, an activity is play if it is fully absorbing, includes elements of uncertainty, involves a sense of illusion or exaggeration, but most importantly, true play has to exist outside of ordinary life. I like this definition. Furthermore, I enjoyed the modern definition of play as being “characterized as a spontaneous, self-initiated, and self-regulated activity of young children, which is relatively risk free and not necessarily goal-oriented. Play is intrinsically motivated” (Verenikina, Harris,& Lysaght, 2003)

I used all my formal inquiry strategies to assess and eventually define what play means to me in the educational world. This definition adaptation was acceptable because I felt I gave the evaluation process a significant amount of research and applied appropriate strategies such as historical perspectives, two-sided research-based information, classical and post classical theory for a successful definition. 

      4. Ethics: Candidates conduct research and practice using accepted professional and institutional guidelines and procedures

Artifacts:  The first project that demonstrated my mastery in the section 5 sub category Ethics is my project in EDTECH 543 Social Media Policy.  This assignment was a social media policies proposal for the school I am employed with.  By writing this proposal, I needed to research and execute guidelines that would be acceptable for policy and procedures in a real world situation.  This policy was written through research and established my institutions accepted professional and institutions guidelines and procedures regarding social media. 

The next project I choose demonstrates the use of research to back acceptable guidelines in determining the appropriate tools to be used in education. The tool I discuss for this project is video games. Through this annotated bibliography, I attempt to validate games use as an educational tool through research.  By creating this research-backed bibliography I am using accepted professional and institutional guidelines to support opinion with applicable research and peer reviewed journals that help support video games as ethical educational tools. 

The final project for this category is a project from EDTECH 543. This project focused on the creation of a positive digital footprint. Through research and practice, I created a strategic benchmark for students and professionals to follow.  “By encouraging and supporting beginning teachers in developing their own PLNs, schools, and districts can help them forge their positive digital footprints as an educator, provide extensive collaborative support and establish a rich source of ideas and professional development during their first years in the classroom." ( Hewson ,2013)  By following the research and guidelines of positive online profiles, I was able to create an accepted ethical institutional guideline for my own school.

There was a point in time during my academic career with Boise State that I would finish a project or assignment and immediately go into my director of education and pitch an idea or introduce a new way to use technology or apps.  From the start of my program to the end I have introduced the business department, IT department, and early childhood education department to new ideas, learning environments and resources.  I have successfully implemented Minecraft, blogging, gamification in economics class, condensed versions of project based learning, quest based learning, and general provisions with dealing with the digital divide.  The most amazing part of all of this was how showing research and projects we used in class helped sell these ideas. I can say with confidence I received little to no push back from these new invites as long as I was able to demonstrate effectiveness and meaning in their use.  This was a strong reoccurring theme with all the discussions about implementing technology and I was fortunate enough to be at the front-lines of these in my professional career.  Those were changes I helped establish to enhance the learning environment for my students and the other programs students. That is something I am very proud of and will forever be indebted to Boise State’s Education Technology department for.  Outside of these changes I was also able to establish myself on campus as the subject matter expert on digital citizenship and personal learning networks.  I was able to establish a better approach to our professional development resources by incorporating social media and web seminars. These changes may not seem significant but to our campus and day to day operations they were the biggest changes that have occurred in quite some time. These changes and  my general  ambition to see them get implemented was a rewarding experience when students and adjuncts responded with as much appreciation and excitement as I had when I first learned about the theories and application in class.
I have no idea what is next for me and my use of education technology.


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