Third Blog Summary Review
Title of the Blog Being Reviewed: Experiencing E-Learning: Building Engaging Learning Experiences through Instructional Design and E-Learning
Blog url: https://christytucker.wordpress.com/about-me/
Blog Writer: Christy Tucker
This post will provide: a brief content overview, thoughtful critique of usefulness, and how This Blog might serve me as an ongoing resource:
This is a visually well- organized blog in and of itself. It has a basic blog set up, with the title of the blog displayed in white, sans serif font against a ribbon of bright blue. There are six main headings displayed to the left inside of the blue ribbon: Home, About Me, My Portfolio, Hire Me, Blog Info, Instructional Design Careers. From these titles, it looks like Christy is a little bit more of an instructional design entrepreneur than the other two blog writer’s I have reviewed in my two previous posts. She seems to be a free-lance instructional designer.
Christy’s picture is displayed to the left. Next to her picture she welcomes us viewers to her blog, which feels nice. She even invites us to check out her Visitor’s Guide if we have never been to her blog before. This strikes me as clever and intriguing. I click on the Visitor’s Guide, like I am traveling to a new a land.
The visitor’s guide lays out themes that reveal what her blog is about: Instructional Design, Corporate E-Learning, Higher Ed, K-12 Education, Lifelong Learning, Technology, Bookmarks (Resources). Christy goes on to state “Talk to Me” and shares that she enjoys the conversational dialogue forum that the medium of a blog constitutes. She states a comment policy and lets readers know that she expects respectful comments that either agree or disagree with her. Guiding readers how to comment, Christy strikes me as a true educator in that she is paying attention to always being aware of a potential teaching moment.
I’m a bit taken by her exclamation that she does not take guest posts “due to multiple negative experiences.” Aye, that is too bad. This strikes me as a little limiting and a network loss, especially when I compare it to the rich and ever so vast network of which Mr. Jay Cross invites to his blog as I discussed in my first blog post. Friends may take you places Ms. Tucker. Do not give up. I went to Christy’s About Me page, and discovered that she is instructional designer focused on developing engaging e-learning and blended learning. She states that her work has been “related to education in some way” she reveals that she has “bounced around from public schools teaching to corporate training and now online instructional design.” She goes on to state how she got into this line of work as an instructional designer and confesses that teaching was not for her. While her story is a bit lengthy, it is insightful. Christy reveals a bit of a casual tone. The positive is she seems to let her guard down and let readers into who she is.
Her top posts are displayed to the right of her blog, and they seem to be fit for someone like me who is just entering the field of instructional design. Her titles read: “What does an instructional designer do?” and “12+ books for instructional designers.”
I checked out one of her blog posts to get a feel for her writing voice and content. Ms. Tucker is an engaging writing, and her blog post writing is well-organized and efficient. I enjoyed her post entitled “Name Generators for Learning Scenarios.” In this post Christy discusses the importance of transforming a general statement into a specific scenario. She presents an effective example, and goes on to discuss generating names and characters for these scenarios. While, yes, choosing names and coming up with an overview of character profiles make sense, there seems to be something missing. She provides name generator resources, which may come in handy for me someday. If I were to guess, I would say that Christy aligns herself with the behaviorist theory as a blog writer. It seems like she had a learning goal in mind as to what she would like her blog viewers to learn (Ertmer & Newby, 1993). Thus, her content leads blog readers right to the ending point of understanding that character names are needed to bring teaching scenarios to life. Then she concludes by giving readers a resource of name engines to explore further.
Yet, I would like to know a little bit more, like I would like to understand more about the active and descriptive scenarios she creates and their usages – and her experience using them in instructional design material. I want her to provide a cognitive approach as well, go a little deeper, and help me understand why choosing names for characters is important in instructional design material. I want her to activate me as a learner in true cognitivist form (Ertmer& Newby, 1993). For example does the name have to be of a certain neutrality or a certain ethnicity? What about gender? What are the latest trends and best practices in regards to gender roles in instructional design materials? How can I think through these topics myself and apply them to current instructional design conversations? How can I actively apply my daily life to character development?
I would recommend Christy’s blog to people thinking about going into instructional design, but maybe haven’t takes a course or read a book on it yet. I may visit Ms. Tucker’s blog from time to time – to check in, introduce myself, and comment on some of her posts. It is always good to know what fellow instructional designers are doing. However, I am seeking a little bit more challenging content – one that asks questions and provides possible answers. Overall I seek more innovative thoughts and idea based content.
Course Text: Ormrod, J., Schunk, D., & Gredler, M. (2009). Learning theories and instruction (Laureate custom edition). New York: Pearson.
Chapter 1, “Overview” (pp. 1–16)
Article: Ertmer, P. A., & Newby, T. J. (1993). Behaviorism, cognitivism, constructivism: Comparing critical features from an instructional design perspective. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 6(4),50-71.