EdTech 513: E-Learning Strategies for F2F Classrooms

As a high school marketing teacher, there are many ways that I can utilize technology in the classroom, however, I would specifically like to incorporate more e-learning strategies for the Advanced Marketing course that I teach. Currently, the students are assigned to complete business/marketing article reviews with current events. They read the article and write up a summary, include key marketing terms that are mentioned, discuss the seven functions of marketing that are displayed, and reflect on how they will use the information for future jobs or business opportunities.

In order to incorporate e-learning strategies and activities in my advanced marketing class, I would like the article reviews to become more collaborative. Students will still read business/marketing related articles, but instead of writing the article reviews and turning them in, they can post them on their own blog site, such as EduBlogs. Students in the class will then be assigned to read three of their classmates’ article reviews and post comments with feedback and questions for the student that wrote the post. This will allow for a more reflective practice, interactive learning, and better exposure to what is currently happening in the business world. In addition to the collaboration, it will allow for submission of the assignment online, rather than on paper, which will invite instructor feedback.

Although this sounds like a simple implementation in a high school course, there are still challenges that could arise. One challenge would be teaching high school students to navigate and use EduBlogs. This would be new to many students, so I would need to make sure to thoroughly explain how to go about creating posts, how to reply to others, what is expected in each post, how to collaborate, etc.

Another challenge would be monitoring collaborations to make sure that students are following proper netiquette in what they are posting and commenting. EduBlog is a great blog site to do this, because the features allows the instructor to preview comments before they are posted. In addition, students would need be taught how to properly respond and respectfully disagree online.

A final challenge of implementing blog posts for article reviews would be assisting the students that can become easily distracted online. When using laptops and having the freedom to search for articles, students tend to wander to other websites, games, etc. A way to overcome this challenge would be to make sure that I am not only monitoring them as they work, but also setting deadlines for posts, and comments to classmates. Since this is a junior/senior level class, I think it is also important to communicate the expectations and hold them to a high standard. As business/marketing students, they are going to soon be out on their own in the business world, and need to learn how to be self-sufficient and responsible.

I think that incorporating this e-learning strategy into my advanced marketing class will have numerous benefits. Not only will it allow for students to continue to learn about current business/marketing happenings in the real world and apply their marketing knowledge, but they will also be able to collaborate with their classmates by reading their articles as well. This will broaden the students’ marketing knowledge, encourage them to interact with their peers though feedback and reflective practice, and allow the instructor to provide meaningful feedback and guidance. I am looking forward to implement this strategy into my advanced marketing curriculum and I know that this is just one small change that I can make to utilize technology and e-learning in the classroom.

EdTech 513: Project #5: Coherence Analysis

“According to the Coherence Principle, you should avoid adding any material that does not support the instructional goal” (Clark & Mayer, 2008, pg. 151). It also suggests that e-lessons should avoid the following:

  1. Extraneous audio
  2. Extraneous graphics
  3. Extraneous words

An example of a successful attempt to apply the Coherence Principle would be to simply have a presentation slide with only what is necessary to teach the instructional goal. This could include a graphic and minimal text such as a headline, or labels of the graphic. An example presentation slide of this is shown below. There is no extraneous audio included and only necessary graphics and text are included. By eliminating extraneous audio, graphics, and words, channels will be able to process and apply what is being taught to the overall instructional goal, in this case learning the 4 parts of an advertising layout.

Ad layout

A bad example of applying the Coherence Principle can be found in Figure 8.2 on page 154 in e-Learning and the Science of Instruction. This is a poor example because it displays information about ammunition, while having background sounds with explosions. This audio is not necessary and is most likely distracting, violating the avoiding extraneous audio rule of this principle.

I have definitely seen this principle be violated and have most likely violated it in my own classroom! An example of a violation is when I had students create a PowerPoint project about themselves. When presenting the PowerPoint, a student used sound effects as the text was entering the slide. The sound they used was a typewriter for each word on the screen. Not only was this distracting to the audience and quite annoying, but it also took away from the oral presentation. In correlation with the cognitive theory of multimedia learning, “background sounds can overload or disrupt the cognitive system, so the narration and the extraneous sounds must compete for limited cognitive resources in the auditory channel” (Clark & Mayer, 2008, pg. 156). This would take away from the overall instructional goal of the presentation.

So far in this course, we have learned about the following multimedia principles:

  • Multimedia: Include both words and graphics
  • Contiguity: Place words near corresponding graphics
  • Modality: Present words as speech rather than on-screen text
  • Redundancy: Do not add on-screen text to narrated graphics
  • Coherence: Avoid extraneous audio, text, and words

I believe that all of these principles work well with one another and the main goal is to achieve the instructional objective, while minimizing cognitive overload of channels. Learning about these principles has really made me think about past, current, and future presentations that I create. I know that I have violated some, if not all of these principles and in the future I plan to apply each to make my presentations more effective by minimizing the cognitive load for students.

Fundamental theories of psychology come into play when applying the Coherence Principle. By simplifying to only what is necessary to reach the instructional goal, channels will be able to process information more efficiently, allowing information to be better processed in the working memory.

What I like about this principle is that it supports that simplicity is a good thing. Many times as educators, we try to make these elaborate presentations that would actually be more effective if we followed that “less is sometimes better”. By eliminating extraneous audio, graphics, and words, students won’t experience cognitive overload.

Although the findings of this principle are backed up well by research, I appreciate that this textbook notices that there is still work to be done. There are challenges and unknowns about the Coherence Principle. One challenge in particular is determining if this principle applies to high-knowledge learners. “The challenge for instructional professionals is to stimulate interest without adding extraneous material that distracts from the cognitive objective of the lesson (Clark & Mayer, 2008, pg. 173). Further research would need to be completed in order to determine if there are ways to incorporate words/graphics while supporting the instructional goal and promoting interest. Now that I know about this principle, I plan to not only update my own lessons, but also teach these principles to my students for any presentations that they create.


Clark, R. C. & Mayer, R. E. (2008). E-learning and the science of instruction, 2nd edition. Pfeiffer: San Francisco, CA.

EdTech 543: Social Media Policies

According to the Papillion La Vista Community School District social media policy, “Free speech protects individuals who want to participate in social media, but the laws and courts have ruled that school districts can discipline employees if their speech, including online postings, disrupts school operations.” This is an important message to send to both students and staff and is the foundation of creating and enforcing a social media policy.

For this week’s assignment, we were to examine current social media policies within our  own school and other school districts. I was able to easily find multiple social media policies that are currently being utilized by other high school districts. After exploring these resources, I created a graphic that has 5 main categories. Each category has individual policies that I found important aspects of a social media policy. This social media policy is designed to be used in my own classroom.

Steps to Ensure Feedback: If I were to actually incorporate this social media policy in my classroom, I would first discuss these policies and their importance with the parents of my students at the open house our school hosts at the beginning of the school year. Then, I would discuss the policies with each of my classes. Students would have the opportunity to provide feedback and voice their opinions on any additional policies that they find important. After receiving feedback from my students, I would finalize the classroom policies and schedule a meeting with my school’s team of administrators and the district communication representative. I would invite a few student representatives to attend the meeting and have them explain their roles in formulating these policies. We would then share the classroom policies and discuss its alignment with the current district policies. I would ask for any feedback or suggestions to improve the policies and make changes as necessary.  The social media policies would be reviewed annually and I would incorporate a student/parent signature aspect to hold students accountable. This social media policy poster would be displayed in the classroom.


Bishop Lynch High School – Dallas, TX: This social media policy provides a participation policy and guidelines for faculty and students. Although a simple list was provided, it could end up being confusing to users, as it communicates what not to do.

Cornwall-Lebanon School District – Lebanon, PA: This social media policy provides guidelines for multiple social media platforms. In addition, I enjoyed that the policy gives examples of acceptable use, disclaimers, and personal responsibility.

Guilford County Schools – Greensboro, NC: This policy was one of the best. It is well-organized and easy to follow. It provides guidelines for professional responsibility and general social media use as well. My favorite policies that I read were that you are always representing your school and that the district incorporated the importance of posting and being active members on social media.

Lodi High School – Lodi, CA: This social media policy was created for the use of student-athletes. I liked this social media policy because it provided a place for both student-athlete to agree and sign the policy which holds them accountable and gets the parents involved by having them sign also.

New York City Department of Education: This policy defines social media use and gives an awesome list of policies. It is user friendly and invites parents to be involved as well. My favorite policy was the “pause before you post.” It reminds users to take an extra few minutes before posting something they could potentially end up regretting.

Papillion La Vista Community School District – Papillion, NE: This district policy provides proper procedures for both students and staff. It is encouraging to know that the district that I work in is being proactive and has a well-established social media policy.

Papillion La Vista South High School – Papillion, NE: This social media within my school provides good examples of proper social media use, but I believe that it is a little outdated. I would rather refer to the district policy than our school policy.

Perris Union High School District – Perris, CA:This was the best social media policy that I found. It was well-organized, had several graphics, and was engaging to readers. It even provided explanations of why to use different platforms of social media. Their policies were descriptive, yet simple. Many of my policies were inspired by this policy.

San Dieguito Union High School District – Encinitas, CA: Although some good information was provided, I felt as though this policy could have been better. It was also not very visually pleasing. I was not very engaged while reading due to the color choice of text and lack of visuals.

Sewickley Academy – Sewickley, PA: I enjoyed this social media policy because it was organized by providing main headings and describing each category using multiple policies within. This was how I decided to set up my own policy.


EdTech 543: Online Communities

For this week’s module, we were to find 4 new, online, educational communities to join. It was difficult at first to find communities that were current and active. Another struggle that I faced was that for the LinkedIn groups, your membership must be approved. This meant a delay in being able to view the content in each community. I found 4 online communities, two linked in groups and two Google+ groups that will benefit me! They are described below.

Social Media Marketing LinkedIn Group: This group was of interest to me because I teach marketing and I wanted to see the world of social media through a marketing perspective. In my advanced marketing course that I teach, I teach a unit on social media marketing. I thought this would be a great group to join to stay up to date on current social media marketing trends and also find information that could assist in the teaching of this unit in my class.


Mobile Marketing & Advertising LinkedIn Group: This group was of interest to me because it again relates to what I teach. I wanted to join this group because of the mobile aspect of marketing that was included and advertising is one of my favorite units to teach. Currently, some of my advanced marketing students are completing marketing research projects and I found some beneficial articles that I will share with them.


Google Apps in Education Google+ Community: This group will be very useful to me. Although we are not a “Google school,” I still use Google Docs quite frequently. Being a member of this page will allow me to stay up to date with the most current Google Apps and trends and will also be a good place to go when I am struggling with a feature of how to do something in Google Docs.


Educational Technology Google+ Community: This is an awesome group for any EdTech needs. There are numerous articles that include current trends in EdTech, suggestions for apps, technology in the classroom, blog posting, etc. I am excited to utilize this community in the future as there were many interesting and useful resources available!


EdTech 543: Live Virtual PD!

Over the last few modules, we were assigned to attend 8 live PD events: 4 Twitter chats and 4 Webinars. I was very interested to see what I would think of these live events and ended up getting a lot out of each! The Twitter chats were honestly a lot of fun, I had no idea that an hour could fly by so fast! Here is a PowerPoint of screenshots of my participation!

#edchat: (Participated on 10/4/16). This was my first Twitter chat. There were two moderators and several participants. The question for the night was “Many educators are dissatisfied with PD. What are the specific shortcomings of PD as you know it?” To begin, I used TweetDeck, but still found it hard to keep up and read what everyone was saying all while replying to the different responses that were coming in at rapid fire! It was also difficult to filter out Tweets that were not intended for the specific #edchat, but rather came up as people unaware of the chat posted and used the hashtag. Although somewhat beneficial to discuss, there wasn’t a lot of organization with the chat and we kind of just rambled the whole time. I contributed by saying that the best PD that I have been to was when we went to different stations and learned about resources/tips from our teacher colleagues. It was interesting to hear about the amount of people who feel as though their district’s PD is not beneficial to them. See the archive for the Twitter chat here!

#busedu: (Participated on 10/4/16). This Twitter chat was AWESOME! It was moderated by Sean Crevier and Nebraska native Mickie Mueller.This chat was very well organized and engaging, explaining chat norms of using Q1, A2, etc. for responses to each question. The moderators made the chat very fun and even included a brain break! In the end, they gave out a prize, Mickie archived the chat and sent it to us which was awesome! Through this chat I gained multiple new resources that I can use in my classroom and also expanded my PLN to new business educators (and joined a BusEd Facebook group!) Looking forward to participating in this chat again each month! See the archive for the Twitter chat here!

#21stedchat: (Participated on 10/16/16). I heard about this chat from other #EdTechSN students via Twitter and thought that it would be a great one to participate in! Like the #busedu chat, this chat was well organized with the Q1, A1 format with different questions asked. I got some really great edtech resources and am very excited to look at some of the apps that people suggested. One specifically is called Aww, which is an app that is an interactive whiteboard. I think this would be great to use in my classroom as a quick way to check for understanding. Another app that I am going to check out is Explain Everything. It has similar features and I am going to compare the two to see which would work better in my classroom. Very beneficial chat with numerous resources that I had no idea about! See the archive for the Twitter chat here!

#formativechat: (Participated on 10/17/16) This chat was great! There were 3 main questions that really made me think about formative assessment, what grade reports REALLY mean, and what we as teachers can do to not only help students, but communicate with parents as well. I had originally planned on participating in the #edtechchat, and as I was waiting for it to begin I stumbled upon this one! Not only do I have a new resource to check out (Formative), but I was also introduced to the site Participation Learning that made keeping up with the chat super easy! Below are the three questions that we discussed during the chat. See the archive for the Twitter chat here!


In the beginning, I struggled to find free, educational Webinars that were relevant to me and fit into my schedule as many occur between 1-3 pm CT when I am teaching. Here is a summary of each Webinar that I attended. All Webinars were through edWeb.

What’s the Fuss All About? Bringing Social Media into the Classroom (Participated on 10/5/16): I really enjoyed this Webinar and came away with some great new resources that I am excited to try out! This Webinar was presented by Jennifer Smith, Instructional Technology Coach at South Middle School in Arlington Heights, IL. There were over 200 people participating in this Webinar and the conversation was very beneficial. We collaborated about technology and social media tools that we currently use in our schools and Jennifer gave us additional resources. Ideas included using Tadpoles, Edmodo, Seesaw, Schoolology, and Animoto. I had not heard of many of these. Jennifer then discussed simple ways to use social media platforms such as Instagram and Twitter in the classroom for things such as sharing work or exit tickets. This was exciting as I was able to contribute by explaining way that I currently use social media in my classroom. This was one of my favorite Webinars! Here is the webinar chat log to show my contributions during the Webinar and my participation certificate.

Fostering Understanding, Empathy, and Dialogue in Our Students (Participated on 10/10/16): The title of this Webinar was a little deceiving. My understand was that we were going to understand tips to foster understanding, empathy, and dialogue with our students. I was excited for this because I feel like these are characteristics that many students in this generation are lacking greatly. However, the Webinar was still beneficial and was presented by Generation Global. The presenters discussed the FREE resources that connect students to one another in classrooms all around the world. This is done via videoconferencing and takes students beyond the classroom and textbook. Each video conference is moderated by a trained Generation Global facilitator. This would be very cool for my own marketing classes in order to connect with students in a different country and learn more about international business. Here is the the webinar chat log to show my contributions during the Webinar and my participation certificate.

Building Brand Loyalty for K-12 Public Schools (Participated on 10/13/16): This was my other favorite webinar and it discussed the importance of building brand loyalty in public schools. It was presented by Teri Wilson, who is the Chief of Staff for the Grand Prairie Independent School District in Texas. She compared the image of school district to the importance of having a positive brand image for a company or product. This was awesome coming from a marketing teacher standpoint! Wilson discussed how they go about training their staff to represent their “brand” and that it only takes one bad moment from one person to tarnish the reputation. In addition, she discussed how they market and advertise their school to parents and future students. This was an excellent Webinar and I really enjoyed attending! Here is the webinar chat log log to show my contributions during the Webinar and my participation certificate.

Leading for Writing Fluency: Language and Basic Skills Fluency for Argumentation and Editing (Participated on 10/17/16). I was surprised how much I got out of this Webinar! It was presented by Kevin Bard. He broke down the writing process and gave great tips! He discussed the importance of teaching students to analyze vocabulary before they can understand the text as a whole. He expressed the importance of having a solid prompt for students to write about. Something interesting that he discussed is that writing should be collaborative. I had never thought of writing in this way. I asked the question of “how do you make sure that these groups are productive?” He answered by making sure that the topic is rigorous and that you have high expectations set in place for such collaborations. Finally, he gave all participants access to numerous writing prompts and the resource IXL that gives micro skills and practices for students of all ages. Here is the webinar chat log! My participation certificate will be in tomorrow 🙂

Overall, I feel as though my brain is currently overloaded with new ideas and resources, but I really enjoyed the different types of live PD that I participated in! I gained a lot from the live Twitter chats including resources, insights, ideas, and new people to follow and expand my PLN. I am excited to participate in Twitter chats in the future. They are quick and easy ways to learn something valuable in a short amount of time! The Webinars were also a good way to expand your resources, knowledge, and PLN. I would definitely suggest Twitter chats and Webinars other teachers!

EdTech 543: Creating a Positive Learning Environment (curated content)

For this week’s module, we were assigned to pick a topic and use a curating tool to find 25 resources that aligned with our topic. I chose the topic of ways to create a positive learning environment. I used the tool Scoop It and loved it! I had no idea that such amazing tools existed. Before this discovery, I was a person that would  just bookmark resources that I found valuable and then struggle to find it later when I needed it. Those days are long gone and I can now organize everything in one place according to each topic! I am very excited to use this tool again. Click here to view my curated content!

Click to look at my self-assessment using our group’s curation criteria.

EdTech 543: Criteria for Effective Curation

This week our group of Katie, Ben, Jasmine, and myself created an alphabet to describe effective curation (via great idea of Katie!) I thought our group worked very well together. We used email, Facebook messenger, and the Google Doc to communicate with one another. Katie jumped right in, creating the Google Doc and came up with a creative idea of the alphabet to express our criteria. Next, the rest of our group members completed research and added in our contributions. I think our alphabet turned out awesome! I learned a lot about curation in the process and honestly had no idea what it was before this module. Looking forward to working with this PLN in the future!

Criteria for Effective Curation: An Alphabet

EdTech 543: 10 Tips to Create a Positive Digital Footprint


Image created by Ally Gilin using canva.com

I have had some sort of presence on social media for over a decade, but as I have “grown up” I have definitely become more aware of what I am posting online, especially as an educator. What I post, share in terms of pictures comments, who I follow, etc. all say something about who I am. Although I found multiple helpful tips when researching, I narrowed it down to a shortened list. Above are the 10 tips that I found most important for creating a positive digital footprint. I really enjoyed designing this graphic using Canva.

My hope is that young adults and professionals realize the importance of creating a positive online presence at an early age. I hope my students realize that what may seem “funny” or get the most likes or favorites doesn’t always mean it’s the right thing to post. One post could jeopardize your future – scholarships, job opportunities, and your personal brand image in general. It could also hurt someone’s feelings. Like it or not, our perceptions are heavily reliant on what we see online. Follow these 10 tips and you will be well on your way to creating a positive digital footprint!

EdTech 543: My Digital Footprint

A digital footprint is a trace that you leave by what you post, share, search, and discuss on the Internet or social media. I think this is a great topic that needs to be discussed more often, especially with teens and young adults. As a marketing teacher, my students and I frequently discuss a company’s brand image and this is exactly the same as our own personal brand image. It is easy to post something that will end up being a regret. We see this with celebrities all the time! Although all of my social media accounts are private (except my teacher Twitter) I am still very careful as to what I post, even on my personal accounts. With today’s technology, a screen shot of a post could mean the end of your career, especially in the education world. Digital footprints are unavoidable and it is important to understand that even if you delete something, chances are someone saw it.

I believe that digital footprint also says a lot about you and the type of person that you are. Meaning to or not, we are constantly “judging” people by that they post through pictures and words and I would never want to give someone mixed ideas about the person that I really am. We have all heard the stories where student-athletes have lost scholarships for something that they have posted or people who have lost jobs because of similar posts. As professionals, we should be portraying ourselves as such. Many company’s first search is your name to see what type of results that they get. It only takes one iffy post for them to move on to the next job applicant.

This was not the first time that I have Googled myself. I was happy to see that the search still produced uneventful results. The first thing that shows up is my personal Twitter account. Then my LinkedIn page, learning log for Boise State, Google + account, and some YouTube videos I have made for grad assignments. Other results included links to things that I was involved in during high school or college such as athletics and activities and past results or awards. I also checked out the images to see what showed up. A few of my profile pictures and images from EdTech posts came up.

I am pleased to see that the Google results are things that I would not mind anyone  seeing. It is so important that we constantly thinking before we post something. You never know who is looking or who someone knows. When in doubt, don’t post. It’s not worth the negative life image for 140 characters that you thought was going to be a good post.


Image courtesy of Flickr user Paul McClay.

EdTech 543: Tweet Deck Hashtags

gilin-tweet-deckI really enjoyed exploring and becoming more comfortable with the features of Tweet Deck and searching for hashtags that would benefit my content area. There were many great hashtags that I explored, but decided on the following 5 as the winners. #edtech #busedchat #pbl #deca and #marketing

I have learned a lot by reading the posts in these categories and had a hard time keeping up, as many are updated every second with something new! 3 things that I learned while exploring the hashtags are:

  1. I learned that there are lots of great resources and class conversation starters in the #busedchat section that I had no idea existed. Many Tweets related directly to current business events happening in the real world! I also learned about edpuzzle.com which allows you to create videos for class and add notes and questions along the way. This will be a cool resources to bring more technology into the classroom.
  2. I learned that looking at specific hashtags can take you to resourceful articles such as What Students Really Remember Learning in School from the #pbl category. This insightful article discusses that the things students remember are the ones that are meaningful and aren’t just strictly memorization, but rather, have application to real life. This is something good to remember and implement in my own classroom.
  3. Finally, I learned about a great resource to follow @MarketingResul2 that tweets daily tips, articles, and infographics that relate to marketing! I can’t wait to use this as a resource in my classroom and share some of these tweets with my students!

I love the idea of using Twitter as professional development. It is convenient, easy to navigate, I can search for exactly what I’m looking for through popular hashtags, all while connecting with different users across the globe! I also like that it is on my own time. I can do it whenever I want and some sort of information will always be there! Another great thing about using Twitter for professional development is that it is current and updating every second! How awesome! Finally, I love that everything is limited to 140 characters. This allows you to decide quickly if it is something that your are interested in reading more about or if you are going to pass it by, which is a huge time saver for the busy teacher! I am looking forward to exploring the hashtags that I have chosen and utilizing Tweet Deck to keep up!