Open Thread Wednesday: Handling Holiday Wellness

It’s the time of year when parties are abundant, grading and deadlines are looming, and health often goes out the window. As an undergraduate, I was particularly guilty of bad behavior during finals week — I’d often go to the one on-campus shop that took our meal plan points and pick up a bag of Oreos and a carton of milk to fuel paper-writing and coding sessions that meant hours of sitting at my computer without moving. Finals weeks and the holiday season around campus can inspire similar desi…


Beyond Textbooks and OER: reflecting on #OpenEd15

There has been no shortage of critiques of the open textbook focus at The Open Education Conference #OpenEd15 – I wasn’t at the conference but I followed the Twitter stream and participated in three virtually connecting sessions in which I met both pairs of keynote speakers. I have to say that the conference organizers’ really welcoming attitude towards the involvement of Virtually Connecting showed true commitment to expanding access and openness (thank you Clint Lalonde and David Wiley).



Wrapping Up A Large Online Course


This fall I’ve been teaching a large-scale online course for the first time. I’ve written a series of posts here about my experiences, and particularly what works and hasn’t worked as I’ve addressed both the challenges of scale and the problems inherent in teaching one of the only online courses offered as part of a traditional face-to-face degree:


Open Access & Copyright: A View from the South

Singapore Waterfalls
In all the discussions about open access and copyright, I want to add my story as someone from the Global South who strongly advocates for open access. Before I do so, I need to admit my privilege: my institution has a great physical and electronic library with additional free document delivery – so I can literally get any article or book chapter I want, for free, and during my PhD I had additional access to the University of Sheffield’s eResources library. However, I know that most Egyptian ac…


Introducing Open Library of the Humanities


This past fall semester, the Open Library of the Humanities, or OLH, officially launched their publishing arm. The OLH is:

a charitable organisation dedicated to publishing open access scholarship with no author-facing article processing charges (APCs). We are funded by an international consortium of libraries who have joined us in our mission to make scholarly publishing fairer, more accessible, and rigorously preserved for the digital future.

As you can tell by the spelling, it originated out…


When the Technology Changes on You

When we use technology extensively in our teaching (or work in general, really), how do we handle unexpected changes to that technology? Here are some thoughts and workarounds. (note: this was inspired by the recent change on Twitter from stars to hearts)

A Website Disappears

Someone recently tweeted about how a website suddenly disappeared a few hours before she was planning to use it in her class. I pointed her to the Wayback Machine (if you haven’t heard of this, it’s an internet archive – y…


The Games Art Historians Play: Online Game-based Learning in Art History and Museum Contexts


[Anne McClanan is a Professor of Art History at Portland State University. Her work in the digital space engages with both online pedagogy and several digital humanities projects, overviewed here.--JBJ]

I recently posted a query on the CAAH listserv (Consortium of Art and Architectural Historians) to research online game-based and gamified learning in art history and museums. Alongside leads on some of the projects I’ll share here, the post garnered some rather animated comments hinting that it…


Digital Distractions: Halloween Edition

Halloween marks for many of us a turning point in the semester, as we move from “fall” into winter and the quickly-approaching holiday season. The mid-point of the semester can often be stressful for students and professors as we start to look towards finals and even begin preparing for spring. If you’re looking to take a break from grading and embrace the remaining days of autumn, here are a few suggestions for season-appropriate digital distractions


Digital Writing Month: Striving for Inclusion in Open Online Learning

Digital Writing Month guest contributors - image created by Chris Friend

I’ve been working for some time on ideas of inclusion & (in)equality in open education, and of the possibility of a postcolonial MOOC (with Shyam Sharma), and gathering ideas from others on how to envision a more inclusive, diverse and equitable open online learning experience.

Putting Ideas into Practice

In a couple of days, I get the opportunity to see how some of these ideas work in practice, as I co-facilitate Digital Writing Month (#DigiWriMo), which is a “30-day adventure through the worl…


Making a WordPress Site Multilingual

A parade of flags from many different countries.WordPress is a favorite tool of many of us here at ProfHacker. It’s great for running a course website, maintaining a professional portfolio, running a blog (ProfHacker runs on WordPress), or managing almost any other sort of website, really.

Every once in a while, there’s a need to present a site’s material in more than one language. If the material in question is really short, the solution is simple enough: just make the page or post a bit longer by including the additional languages right the…