Talking Ed.: Badges in Education

Talking Ed. with Dr. Rick West

Episode 007 (View entire series)

Open Badges provide a new way of issuing credentials to individuals who demonstrate knowledge, skill, or ability in a  particular domain. Badges provide a simple system for communicating a skill along with specific information about the evidence connected with earning the badge” (Source). Dr. Rick West provides background for educational badges, discusses some of the rationale and benefits, and provides tips for implementation.

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The Don’ts and Don’ts of Teaching

Gary Rubinstein suggests 10 actions teachers should consider avoiding. He teaches math at Stuyvesant High School in New York City and is the author of Beyond Survival. While many in education recommend stating rules and guidelines positively, Gary argues that “it’s a lot more efficient to learn a few mistakes that you should avoid than to learn all the things you should do right. When I compare my awful first year with my very successful second year, the main difference was not so much what I did as what I didn’t do. Here are 10 rookie teacher mistakes I wish I’d avoided.”

I recommend that you look over Gary’s list of 10 tips, not because I completely agree with everything in the article (because I don’t), as a means for kicking-off an important conversation about effective practice – something educators should do on an ongoing basis (reflective practitioner).

The Don’ts and Don’ts of Teaching
Gary Rubinstein

Future Teachers: Your Help Is Needed — #edchat #idt6061 #idt3600

America’s future teachers are invited to participate in the “Speak Up 2012 Survey for America’s Future Teachers” to share your ideas about teaching.

Speak Up, a national online research project facilitated by Project Tomorrow®, gives individuals the opportunity to share their viewpoints about key issues in K-12 education.

Any college student, who is participating in a degree or credential program that will prepare them for a career as a K-12 teacher, is eligible to take the survey, regardless of prior student teaching experience.

Speak Up for America’s Future Teachers is facilitated through online surveys and will be aggregated at the national and institution level. All of the data is 100% confidential and no specific institutional findings will be shared with anyone outside of the participating college or university.

Participate in “Speak Up 2012 Survey for America’s Future Teachers” and share your ideas about teaching.

Our Book Is Now Available

Developing Technology-Rich Teacher Education Programs: Key Issues

Drew Polly, Clif Mims, and Kay A. Persichitte

Developing Technology-Rich Teacher Education ProgramsDescription

Though technology is expanding at a rate that is alarming to many skilled laborers concerned for the welfare of their industry and jobs, teachers should feel safe in their position; however, teachers who refuse to adapt to technology will be left behind.

Developing Technology-Rich Teacher Education Programs: Key Issues offers professional teacher educators a rare opportunity to harvest the thinking of pioneering colleagues spanning dozens of universities, and to benefit from the creativity, scholarship, hard work, and reflection that led them to the models they describe. Contributors from 32 universities from around the world came together as authors of case studies, methodologies, research, and modeling to produce the work that went into this reference work. The target audience for this book includes faculty, leaders, teacher educators, and administrators within higher institution and every level of education.


Teacher education programs, more than ever before, are under severe scrutiny from national and state government, policy, and accreditation organizations. Teacher education programs are being asked to provide evidence of their impact on teacher candidates, as well as the indirect impact of teacher education programs on PK-12 students. Reforms in teacher education programs focus on the integration of 21st century skills, which include knowledge and skills related to information technology, creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and communication (Partnership for 21st Century Skills, 2004).  Technology is an essential component of these 21st Century reforms.

The focus of teacher education programs is to prepare teacher candidates to effectively teach in 21st Century learning environments. These classrooms have access to Internet-connected educational technologies, including computers, hand-held, or portable devices (U.S. Department of Education, 2010). As a result of the technology-rich nature of PK-12 schools, it is critical for teacher education programs to examine their effectiveness related to preparing teacher candidates to effectively use educational technologies to support teaching and learning processes.

The construct of Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) has explicated the knowledge and skills related to technology integration. Candidates develop the knowledge and skills related to technology integration through educational technology courses, methods courses, and technology-rich field experiences (Schrum, 1999). In this book, contributors address all of those contexts and provide examples of how technology-rich teacher education programs have developed TPACK and related skills in teacher candidates and faculty.

The purpose of this book is to provide examples and frameworks related to creating effective models of infusing technology into teacher education programs. This book is intended for faculty and others associated with teacher education programs as a resource of creating technology-rich teacher education programs.  As a result, each chapter has clear directions and implications for adopting their ideas into teacher education programs.  Further, the ever-changing landscape of what constitutes current educational technologies, has led the editors to focus this book on examples and models that address current educational technologies, but are likely to be relevant over the next decade or two as well.

The book is divided into six sections, which focus on:  Frameworks for Technology Integration, Web 2.0 technologies, Teacher Education Courses, Integrating Technology across Content Areas, Field Experiences, and Ways to Support Teacher Education Faculty.


“This book offers professional teacher educators a rare opportunity to harvest the thinking of pioneering colleagues spanning dozens of universities, and to benefit from the creativity, scholarship, hard work, and reflection that led them to the models they describe.  Teacher educators are, indeed, fortunate to have this opportunity to make informed decisions that will transform teacher education at this important moment in the history of education.”

Kyle L. Peck, Associate Dean for Outreach, Technology, and International Programs and Professor of Education at Penn State University, USA

Personal Note

I’d like to thank everyone that contributed to this book and worked with us during the past year and a half. I’d especially like to note the contributions and dedication of my friends, colleagues, and co-authors, Drew Polly and Kay Persichitte.

I hope this work enhances teacher education and technology integration ultimately blessing the education and lives of all learners.

– Clif

Ning for Teacher Educators

Technology Integration Teacher Educators is a network of teacher educators with an interest in educational technology. It is a growing network with some big plans. I encourage you to join if this sounds like a useful resource for you.

Welcome to UNCC Friends

Welcome Mat

I’d like to welcome all the students from UNC-Charlotte graduate certificate program that have been friending/connecting with me on Diigo, this blog, Google Friend Connect, Learning Telecollaboratively, and more. I encourage each of you to jump in and become active participants in the educational community as you have a lot that you can share with us.

All the best,

Advice for Future Teachers Graduating This Month

Episode 002

Please watch this 20 second video post and consider sharing your wisdom. NOTE: Click on the small video stills under the viewer to watch the video replies from others.

Please share your text/audio/video reply in the Comments section of this post or respond to the corresponding Seesmic conversation (Think video-based Twitter).