HigherEdCamp Philly at Arcadia University on November 2 – What could be better?

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HigherEdCamp Philly couldn’t happen at a better time this year. Just as the sun dims at about 4:30. Just as the semester rolls into its 10th week. Just as that seductive urge for complacency hits, we get to spend a day digging into how to design meaningful learning and come out the other side of it charged up for what we can do in our classes the next day, next week, next semester, fueled by bagels, coffee, pizza, and soda.

This HigherEdCamp is going to be slightly different from others since it will focus more broadly on designing meaningful learning, meaning that while there will certainly be technological undertones and overtones to the day, the work that we do won’t be limited to how technology can influence our pedagogy. Instead, we’ll be exploring together all of the myriad ways that we already are and can design learning that is rigorous, meaningful, “real world,” interesting, and fun. That’s right. I said it. Fun!

How exactly are we going to do that? This video from an edcamp in Toronto is a nice intro to what the day can look, sound, and feel like.

HigherEdCamp is dedicated to addressing those thorny and challenging issues that may be holding us back from doing what we really want to be doing in our classes, in our programs, in our units, and in our colleges. But we aren’t going to just address them, we are going to design ways to overcome them and enable each other to implement ideas that we have always had but have had difficulty moving from the idea stage to implementation. Here are some examples:

  • How can I flip my comp/chem/anthro/ed class, to name just a few?
  • How can brain-based learning influence the way my class looks, sounds, and feels?
  • How can I make my class project-based?
  • How can we take better advantage of summer at my college?
  • How can I move away from quizzes and tests as the primary mode of students showing what they know?
  • Come to think of it, how can students show what they know in my class?
  • Philly is so close by. How can I take better advantage of this big city?
  • There’s no shared planning time with my colleagues. I want to figure out how to change that.
  • Ipads sound great, but I can’t figure out how to implement them in my classroom. Help!
  • It feels like I am grading all of the time. How can I reduce the amount of grading I do?
  • The technology at my college is lacking, how can I overcome that in my class?
  • I’ve always wanted to collaborate with other professors in other colleges. How can I make that happen?
  • The graduate application process is cumbersome at my college. How can I help make it more efficient and meaningful?

Imagine these 13 questions up on a big white board. Which one would you want to attend? Chances are there are ten or so other folks who are ignited by the same question you are. The next thing you know, you are circled up in a room, Ipads, laptops, and smart phones out and open, working together to pursue that question and to leave that session with a plan in mind and on paper. Your device is chock full of resources to help you put that plan into action, and your Professional Learning Network has grown exponentially.

In order for this to be able to happen, we need representation! The goal is to get 200 folks from all the Greater Philadelphia area colleges and universities to attend. A tall order to be sure, but doable! Here’s how we can meet this goal:

  1. Register yourself for a FREE ticket here: https://higheredphilly2013.eventbrite.com
  2. Send that link to any and all of your colleagues
  3. Check out our website: http://www.higheredphilly.com/ for more information
  4. Send the website to your friends and colleagues too!
  5. Respond to our poll!  http://www.polleverywhere.com/free_text_polls/L3E67GoxjZrYq4I We want to get a sense of the ideas/challenges/projects that you want to explore on the day
  6. Show up! We are at Arcadia University – Brubaker Hall – breakfast starts at 8





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