Chapter 3 etc.

Chapter 3 is included in the latest version of the thesis, arriving right on time!  I also expanded the literature review and APA-standardized the references.


penultimate progress?

Finished my prototype.  (Powerpoint version here.)

I’m working through the ADDIE additions to my thesis document and improvements to my literature review.  I should be done in a day or two, probably posting at about 11:45 Friday night.

proposal submitted

Was I not paying attention?  I actually had not submitted the proposal last week.  I finished it today and sent it off.  Major copy/paste activity, both from the sample provided by Dr. N and from my MA project document.

I also spoke with Dr. N this week, confessed my doubts about making any progress on anything before June 13, and he assured me I was doing fine.  My current collection of points amounts to about 84%, so I must be doing something write.

I have a working set of pages on the web, so my prototype will contain snaps of these, as well as simulations of the expected improvements.

I keep thinking Dr. N must have been oversimplifying, or assuming I was filling in the blanks, when he described what I need to do for the project.  I’m having trouble comprehending just how much we’re completing and how much (a lot, I know) of the thesis paper we’re actually leaving blank.  The description in the on-line schedule says “full ADDIE mode,” but other than the major job of the literature review, it seems we’re leaving a lot of blanks unfilled.  I’ll write to him again.

IRB app

Submitted my proposal and my IRB application draft, along with an Informed Consent Form. Not sure if I also need an assent form. (I’m testing a class-participation tracking and reporting system. The students will participate, including surveys, so I need consent from the parents.)

I also completed the CITI quizzes.

CITI training module

So, how do you “complete” this? Does it require 100% correct answers?

no change

I will not be changing my topic. I talked to Dr. N, who pointed out one very good reason (along with the obvious one about starting back at Square One), which is that this change would require changing from a design & development topic to a research topic.

I’m behind on the following: revisions on the literature review, project proposal, IRB. My three-day weekend is shortened a bit by some work and some travel, but I should be able to make some serious project on all three of these tonight. I’ll post the content as comments to this message.


Very little progress this week. I’m obsessed with changing the topic of my thesis from motivation & motivating systems to issues of student understanding of algebraic symbols. I’ve asked the teacher about changing my thesis. I’m sure this isn’t a great idea, this late in the game, but I think it might be better than working on an idea that I’ve sort of shoehorned in my radar. We’ll see.

IRB and proposal

If I read the schedule correctly, all that’s due tonight is an update here. Good. That’s what I’m prepared to complete. (I have read the schedule and the forms. I have not filled anything out.)

I will be making corrections to my LR after I hear from the teacher.

Comments from other bloggers are really sparse. I try to comment on others’ blogs, although I don’t get to that as much as I would like. I did comment on one of my classmates’ LRs. My comments were respectfully critical, regarding some mechanical details. I hope they’ll be accepted in the spirit intended.

literature review

I’ve left the markers in (“subsection two” etc.) since it wasn’t clear to me whether we are supposed to include such headlines.  I need to reformat all citations in the reference section.  With those caveats, this is submitted for this week’s assignment.

literature review, under construction

I continue to have trouble understanding the assignments in this course.  This seems to be related to the course’s online nature (and my own obtuseness).

First, I’m never really sure what’s due.  That’s my fault, for not reading the syllabus, or for not paying attention (or taking notes) when I do read it.  What is due tonight is a weekly check-in.  That’s what I’m doing right now.  However, I’ve received a grade so far for “timeline” and “pre-thesis.”  Do these count as check-ins for their respective weeks?  I doubt it.  Did I get credit for my prior check-ins?

Second, my grades for these two items were 10 and 40, respectively. That would seem to be a 100% (10 out of 10) and a 67% (40 out of 60) on these assignments.  67% is not acceptable, personally, but that isn’t the end of the story: the comment reads “a good start!”  Does that mean I’ll be getting more points here as I fill in the thesis?  I can’t really tell.

Unrelated to that, I got the good news this week that I’ve been accepted into the MA program.  Since I started working toward this degree, in Spring 2007, I was seeking and being given permission to take each course.  I was missing only my writing requirement.  I passed the WREE in February.  My status as a student in the MA program is one big thing I no longer have to worry about.

Research for the literature review continues.  I am spending too much time on the search, limiting the time I have to write.  This isn’t good, but it isn’t horrible, since I can write quickly.  (I had a six-year career as a journalist in my 20s.  I wrote a lot, and I occasionally was required to write single-draft copy extremely quickly.)

My next decision is how to break what I’ve found into three sections.  My paper will be on the use of an online classroom-participation system as a tool to enhance participation, and I believe I’ve identified section three: do we even need participation?  I’ve found an interesting article that questions the fundamental assumptions about this popular grading component.  I’ll look for other articles to support or refute the importance of classroom participation.

I’m not sure what sections one and two will be about.  Most likely one of them will be a survey of existing participation-tracking systems.  Maybe section one will be low-tech systems and section two will be high-tech systems.  I welcome suggestions here.

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