CTL Blog

Fight Or Flight In Online Learning

I’m not about to become an authority on the subject of constructivism, but one of the challenges with early online learning where instructors who knew their subjects very well but didn’t understand how less-productive it could be to just toss students into an online learning environment and expect that their instincts would take over and they would just ‘figure it out’. Most distance-learning students (including myself) have a certain amount of online survival mechanism built in that very closely mimics survival in the real world.

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Sandstorm

I am Martin Lehner and I work in the CTL doing programming, system administration, and technical black magic. A great deal of my time is spent installing various applications on unix or linux servers. To get an idea of how complicated that is.. allow me to confuse the heck out of you… (more…)

Blogging at Mesa Community College

In the CTL we have opportunities of trying out new services for the purpose of experimentation and growth for new methods of instruction. While we have had a blog before, currently, this blog is the first official blog hosted on the same website as our main page. Thanks to Martin Lehner, and James Bowles, our website is able to support more dynamic content than in the past. Anything PHP based is now a thing of reality, whereas before it was harder to support on our server. However, we aren’t quite there yet in terms of supporting a broad campus-wide instructional blogging community. In the interim, if anyone wants to do blogging for themselves or collaboratively with your students or co-workers, there are many free alternatives. (more…)

Helping Students (and Faculty) Connect Information through Concept Mapping

The other day, I was sitting in a meeting and heard a most respected colleague extol the virtues of Edward Tufte’s writings. She was especially complimentary about his essay on the cognitive style of PowerPoint and described how it had changed how she was teaching. I have not yet read Tufte’s essay (I’m planning to order a copy), and I just missed being able to attend his latest workshop in Phoenix last week. However, I gathered from her short description that one of Tufte’s main complaints is that PowerPoint imposes a linear structure on the delivery of information that obscures the connections between the ideas presented. (more…)

Removing the Background of an Image

For a long time one would have to break out the old magic wand or lasso tool and carefully select around the portion of the image they wanted to remove the background. Then copy the selection and place it on a new layer or canvas. That is now a thing of the past! (more…)