In order to add a more personal touch to the information presented in this video, the instructor chose to forgo using PowerPoint. Instead, he chose to show his own hands drawing on a board in order to capture the more personal feel of a chalk-and-talk lecture. This had the additional benefit of allowing students to see the technical information of the lesson (graphs, equations, etc.) as it’s being created, as well as allowing the instructor to utilize a more conversational tone in presenting the lesson.
Street interviews and outside shots are a great way to demonstrate to students course concepts in action. This economics instructor wanted to show his students three things:
- The places and people actually engaged in economic activity.
- The understanding people on the street have about the topics and concepts discussed in the course.
- A survey of the Urbana-Champaign region and some of its most relevant economic examples.
In The Fifth Discipline, Peter Senge writes,"The problems with mental models lie not in whether they are right or wrong—by definition, all models are simplifications. The problems with mental models arise when the models are tacit when they exist below the level of awareness" (176).
Unfortunately, the mental models many college students have of writing are too narrow, too simplistic, and too tacit to be more than somewhat useful in a multi-decade career.
The map image below is a point-and-click navigation interface to a set of thirteen reflective-writing activities that leverage our common understanding of the JOURNEY to better understand writing. Completing these activities facilitates students building a mental model of writing broad enough to span between disciplines, sophisticated enough to be applied successfully to writing contexts beyond the academy, and explicit enough to be consciously articulated/interrogated by the students.