A Review of ‘Media Manipulation and Disinformation Online’

This was previously posted on the AACE Review by Sandra Rogers.

Digital screen with green code on black background
Photo by Markus Spiske temporausch.com on Pexels.com

In Media Manipulation and Disinformation Online, Marwick and Lewis (2017) of the Data & Society Research Institute described the agents of media manipulation, their modus operandi, motivators, and how they’ve taken advantage of the vulnerability of online media. The researchers described the manipulators as right-wing extremists (RWE), also known as alt-right, who run the gamut from sexists (including male sexual conquest communities) to white nationalists to anti-immigration activists and even those who rebuke RWE identification but whose actions confer such classification.

These manipulators rally behind a shared belief on online forums, blogs, podcasts, and social media through pranks or ruinous trolling anonymity, usurping participatory culture methods (networking, humor, mentorship) for harassment, and competitive cyber brigades that earn status by escalating bullying such as the sharing of a target’s private information. The researchers proposed that the use of the more digestible term of alt-right to convey the collective agenda of misogynists, racists, and fascists propelled their causes into the mainstream discourse through various media streams. Therefore, I’ll use the term RWE instead.

MEDIA ECOSYSTEM MALEABILITY

The Internet provides a shared space for good and evil. Subcultures such as white nationalists can converge with other anti-establishment doers on an international scale thanks to the connected world we live in. Marwick and Lewis reported on how RWE groups have taken advantage of certain media tactics to gain viewers’ attention such as novelty and sensationalism, as well as their interactions with the public via social media, to manipulate it for their agenda. For instance, YouTube provides any individual with a portal and potential revenue to contribute to the media ecosystem. The researchers shared the example of the use of YouTube by conspiracy theorists, which can be used as fodder for extremist networks as conspiracies generally focus on the loss of control of important ideals, health, and safety.

The more outrageous conspiracies get picked up by the media for their viewers, and in doing so, are partly to blame for their proliferation. In the case study provided with this article, The White Student Union, an influencer successfully sought moral outrage as a publicity stunt. Why isn’t the media more astute about this? “The mainstream media’s predilection for sensationalism, need for constant novelty, and emphasis on profits over civic responsibility made them vulnerable to strategic manipulation (p. 47) (Marwick & Lewis, 2017).”

ONLINE ATTENTION HACKING

Marwick and Lewis shared how certain RWE influencers gained prominence based on their technological skills and manipulative tactics. One tactic they’re using is to package their hate in a way that appeals to millennials. They use attention hacking to increase their status such as hate speech, which is later recanted as trickster trolling all the while gaining the media’s attention for further propagation. Then there are the RWE so-called news outlets and blogs that promote a hyper-partisan agenda and falsehoods. These were successful in attention hacking the nation running up to the 2016 Presidential election at a scale that out-paced that of the regular news outlets on Facebook (Buzz Feed News, 2016). Are they unstoppable?

The researchers indicated that the only formidable enemy of alt-right media is the opposing factions within its fractured, yet shared hate, assemblage. Unfortunately, mainstream media’s reporting on political figures who engage in conspiracy theories, albeit noteworthy as to their mindset, raises it to the level of other important newsworthy of debate.  Berger and Luckmann (1966) referred to this as ‘reality maintenance’ through dialogue, reality-confirmation through interactions, ongoingly modified, and legitimized through certain conversations. The media needs to stop the amplification of RWE messages; otherwise, as Marwick and Lewis stated, it could gravely darken our democracy.

ONLINE MANIPULATORS SHARED MODUS OPERANDI

Marwick and Lewis reported the following shared tactics various RWE groups use for online exploits:

  • Ambiguity of persona or ideology,
  • Baiting a single or community target’s emotions,
  • Bots for amplification of propaganda that appears legitimately from a real person,
  • “…Embeddedness in Internet culture… (p. 28),”
  • Exploitation of young male rebelliousness,
  • Hate speech and offensive language (under the guise of First Amendment protections),
  • Irony to cloak ideology and/or skewer intended targets,
  • Memes for stickiness of propaganda,
  • Mentorship in argumentation, marketing strategies, and subversive literature in their communities of interest,
  • Networked and agile groups,
  • “…Permanent warfare… (p.12)” call to action,
  • Pseudo scholarship to deceive readers,
  • “…Quasi moral arguments… (p. 7)”
  • Shocking images for filtering network membership,
  • “Trading stories up the chain… (p. 38)” from low-level news outlets to mainstream, and
  • Trolling others with asocial behavior.

This is a frightful attempt at the social reconstruction of our reality, as the verbal and nonverbal language we use objectifies and rules the order (Berger and Luckmann, 1966).

DISINFORMATION MOTIVATORS

According to Marwick and Lewis, media manipulators are motivated by pushing their ideological agendas, the joy of sowing chaos in the lives of targets, financial gain, and/or status. The RWE’s shared use of online venues to build a counter-narrative and to radicalize recruits is not going away any time soon. This was best explained in their article as, with the Internet, the usual media gatekeepers have been removed.

Some claimed their impetus was financial and not politically motivated such as the teenagers in Veles, Macedonia who profited around 16K dollars per month via Google’s AdSense from Facebook post engagements with their 100 fake news websites (Subramanian, 2017). “What Veles produced, though, was something more extreme still: an enterprise of cool, pure amorality, free not only of ideology but of any concern or feeling about the substance of the election (Subramanian, 2017).”  …Google eventually suspended the ads from these and other fake news sites. However, as reported in Dead Reckoning, new provocateurs will eventually figure out how to circumvent Google’s AdSense and other online companies’ gateways as soon as they develop new ones. This is because, as aforementioned, the RWE influencers are tech-savvy.

PUBLIC MISTRUST OF MAINSTREAM MEDIA

Marwick and Lewis acknowledged a long history of mistrust with mainstream media. However, the current distrust appears worse than ever. For example, youth reported having little faith in mainstream media (Madden, Lenhart & Fontaine, 2017). Republicans’ trust in the mainstream media was the lowest ever recorded by the Gallop Poll (Swift, 2016). Why has it worsened? They pinpointed The New York Times’ lack of evidence for various news articles on the Iraq War’s nuclear arsenal, as an example of long-lasting readership dismay. The researchers reported on how a lack of trust in the mainstream media has pushed viewers to watch alternative networks instead. Moreover, the right-wing extremists’ manipulation of the media demonstrates the media’s weakness, which in turn sows mistrust. Marwick and Lewis acknowledged that the RWE subculture has been around the Internet for decades and will continue to thrive off the mainstream media’s need for novelty and sensationalism if allowed. I, for one, appreciate what Data & Society is doing to shed light on the spread of fake news and hatemongers’ agendas on the Internet.

Instructional Material

If you’re a college instructor of communications or teach digital literacy as a librarian, see the corresponding syllabus for this article. It provides discussion questions and assignments for teaching students about media manipulation. To teach your students how to combat fake news online, see my other AACE Review post on Navigating Post-Truth Societies: Strategies, Resources, and Technologies.

References

Berger, P. L., & Luckmann, T. (1966). The social construction of reality: A treatise in the sociology of knowledge. New York, NY: Anchor Books.

Madden, M. Lenhart, A., & Fontaine, C. (February 2017). How youth navigate the news landscape. Retrieved from https://kf-siteproduction.s3.amazonaws.com/publications/pdfs/000/000/230/original/Youth_News.pdf

Marwick, A. & Lewis, R. (2017). Media manipulation and disinformation online. Retrieved from https://datasociety.net/pubs/oh/DataAndSociety_MediaManipulationAndDisinformationOnline.pdf

Subramanian, S. (February 2017). Inside the Macedonian fake-news complex. Retrieved from https://www.wired.com/2017/02/veles-macedonia-fake-news/

Swift, A. (2016). Americans trust in mass media sinks to new low. Retrieved from http://www.gallup.com/poll/195542/americans-trust-mass-media-sinks-new-low.aspx


Sandra Annette Rogers, Ph.D.

Teacherrogers Products
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com

Interview with the Creators of Hoaxy® from Indiana University

This post was previously published on the AACE Review by Sandra Rogers.

Hoaxy diffusion network of the spread of a misleading news article on vaccines via Twitter

Figure 1. A Hoaxy® diffusion network regarding claims about the HPV vaccine.

Falsehoods are spread due to biases in the brain, society, and computer algorithms (Ciampaglia & Menczer, 2018). A combined problem is “information overload and limited attention contribute to a degradation of the market’s discriminative power” (Qiu, Oliveira, Shirazi, Flammini, & Menczer, 2017).  Falsehoods spread quickly in the US through social media because this has become Americans’ preferred way to read the news (59%) in the 21st century (Mitchell, Gottfried, Barthel, & Sheer, 2016). While a mature critical reader may recognize a hoax disguised as news, there are those who share it intentionally. A 2016 US poll revealed that 23% of American adults had shared misinformation unwittingly or on purpose; this poll reported high to moderate confidence in one’s ability to identify fake news with only 15% not very confident (Barthel, Mitchell, & Holcomb, 2016).

What’s the big deal?

The Brookings Institute warned how organized disinformation campaigns are especially dangerous for democracy: “This information can distort election campaigns, affect public perceptions, or shape human emotions” (West, 2017). Hoaxes are being revealed through fact-checking sites such as FactCheck.org, Politifact.com, Snopes.com, and TruthorFiction.com. These have the potential to reveal falsehoods and provide any corresponding truth in the details or alternative facts. For example, PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter is run by the editors of The Tampa Bay Times. This tool was so crucial for checking the veracity of candidates’ statements during the 2008 Presidential campaign season that they won a Pulitzer Prize for Journalism in 2009.

Hoaxy® (beta)

Hoaxy® takes it one step further and shows you who is spreading or debunking a hoax or disinformation on Twitter.  It was developed by Indiana University Network Science Institute and the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research. The Knight Prototype grant and the Democracy Fund support it. The visuospatial interactive maps it produces are called diffusion networks and provide real-time data if you grant the program access to your Twitter account. Hoax purveyors be warned—it shows the actual Twitter user or Bot promoting it through grey, low-credibility claims. Conversely, it also displays in yellow the Twitter accounts fact-checking the claim.

Bots are determined by computer algorithms and given a score based on the science behind the Botometer with red identifying accounts most ‘Bot Like’ and blue for most ‘Human-Like’. The website’s landing page provides trending news, popular claims, popular fact-checks, and a search box for queries. The site’s Dashboard shows a list of influential Twitter accounts and number of tweets for those sharing claims or fact-checking articles with the corresponding Botometer Score.

Use Hoaxy® to find out who is at the center of a hoax by clicking the node to reveal the Twitter account. It’s also interesting to see who the outliers are and their six degrees of separation. Select a node, and it will provide the Botometer Score and whether they quoted someone or someone quoted them (retweets) on Twitter. For example, a magician named Earl is the approximate epicenter for spreading misinformation about the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine causing an increase of cervical cancer in Swedish girls. See vaccine query visualized on Hoaxy, as in Figure 1. Based on the sharing of the article from Yournewswire.com, it had 1665 people claiming it and zero disclaimers on Twitter, as of 7/18/18. As for the facts, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, HPV vaccines are safe and prevent cervical cancer (2018).

It was a privilege to talk to the Hoaxy project coordinator, Dr. Giovanni Ciampaglia, on behalf of his co-coordinators Drs. Alessandro Flammini and Filippo Menczer:

What was the inspiration or tipping point to invent Hoaxy®?

We started Hoaxy because we could not find a good tool that would let us track the spread of misinformation on social media. The main inspiration was a project called Emergent (emergent.info), which was a really cool attempt at tracking rumors spreading through the news media. However, it was a completely manual effort by a group of journalists, and it was hard to scale to social media, where there are just so many stories published at once. So, we set out with the idea in mind of building a platform that would work in a completely automated fashion.

Since its creation in 2016, what are some of the overhauls that the Hoaxy® software program required for updates?

Hoaxy has evolved quite a bit since we first launched in 2016. The main overhaul was a complete redesign of its interface, during which we also integrated our social bot detection classifier called Botometer. In this way, Hoaxy can be used to understand the role and impact of social bots in the spread of both misinformation, and of low-credibility content in general.

What are some of the unexpected uses of Hoaxy?

We were not entirely expecting it when we first heard it, but several educators use Hoaxy in their classrooms to teach about social media literacy. This is of course really exciting for us because it shows the importance of teaching these skills and of using interactive, computational techniques for doing so.

What hoax is currently fact-checked the most?

Hoaxes are constantly changing, so it’s hard to keep track of what is a most fact-checked hoax. However, Hoaxy shows what fact-checks have been shared the most in the past 30 days, which gives you an idea of the type of hoaxes that are circulating on social media at any given time.

What’s the most absurd claim you encountered?

There are just too many… my favorite ones have to do with ancient prophecies and catastrophes (usually about asteroids and other astronomical objects).

Has Hoaxy® won any awards? (If not, what type of award categories does it fit in?)

It has not won an award (yet!). We are grateful however to the Knight Foundation Prototype Fund and to the Democracy Fund, who supported the work of integrating Botometer into Hoaxy.

I noted Mihai Avram’s (Indiana University graduate student) work on Fakey, a teaching app on discerning disinformation that is gamified. Are you involved with overseeing that project as well?

Yes, Filippo is involved in it. Mihai has also worked on Hoaxy; in fact, without him, the current version of Hoaxy would have certainly not been possible!

What are some other resource projects your team is working on now?

Hoaxy is part of the Observatory on Social Media (osome.iuni.iu.edu), and we provide several other tools for open social media analytics (osome.iuni.iu.edu/tools). We are working on improving Hoaxy and making it operable with other tools. The ultimate goal would be to bring Hoaxy into the newsroom so that reporters can take advantage of it as part of their social media verification strategies.

What type of research is critically needed to better understand the spread of disinformation and its curtailing?

We definitely need to better understand the “demand” side of dis/misinformation — what makes people vulnerable to misinformation? The complex interplay between social, cognitive, and algorithmic vulnerabilities is not well understood at the moment. This will need a lot of investigation. We also need more collaboration between academia, industry, civil society, and policymakers. Platforms are starting to open up a little to partnering with outside researchers, and there will be much to learn on all sides.

Is there anything else you would like to share?

Yes! We are always happy to hear what users think about our tools, and how we can improve them. To contact us you can use email, Twitter, or our mailing list. More information here: http://osome.iuni.iu.edu/contact/

About Giovanni Ciampaglia

Dr. Ciampaglia is an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of South Florida. Previously, he was an assistant research scientist and postdoctoral fellow at the Indiana University Network Science Institute, where he collaborated on information diffusion with Drs. Menczer and Flammini and co-created Hoaxy. Prior to that, he was a research analyst contractor at the Wikimedia Foundation. He has a doctorate in Informatics from the University of Lugano in Switzerland. His research interest is in large-scale, collective, social phenomena on the Internet and other complex social phenomena such as the emergence of social norms.

References

Barthel, M., Mitchell, A., & Holcomb, J. (December 2016). Many Americans believe fake news is sowing confusion. Trusts, Facts, & Democracy. Retrieved from http://www.journalism.org/2016/12/15/many-americans-believe-fake-news-is-sowing-confusion/

Ciampaglia, G. L., & Menczer, F. (June 2018). Misinformation and biases infect social media, both intentionally and accidentally. Retrieved from http://theconversation.com/misinformation-and-biases-infect-social-media-both-intentionally-and-accidentally-97148

Mitchell, A., Gottfried, J., Barthel, M., & Shearer, E. (July 2016). The modern news consumer. Trusts, Facts, & Democracy. Retrieved from http://www.journalism.org/2016/07/07/the-modern-news-consumer/

Qiu, X., Oliveira, D., Shirazi, S., Flammini, A., & Menczer, F. (2017). Limited individual attention and online virality of low-quality information. Nature Human Behavior, 1(132). doi:10.1038/s41562-017-0132

West, D. M. (2017). How to combat fake news and disinformation. Retrieved from https://www.brookings.edu/research/how-to-combat-fake-news-and-disinformation/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI2eK5nbrA3AIVDgFpCh1k1wepEAAYASAAEgIL0PD_BwE


Sandra Annette Rogers, Ph.D.

Teacherrogers Products
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com

Curation of Your Online Persona Through Self-Care and Responsible Citizenship

Embed from Getty Images

 

I’m excited to announce my publication in this new K-12 book titled, Leveraging Technology to Improve School Safety and Student Wellbeing (Huffman, Loyles, Albritten, & Green, 2020). My contribution to the edited book is titled, Curation of Your Online Persona Through Self-Care and Responsible Citizenship (Rogers, 2020). It’s written for secondary teachers and their students. It started as a few lesson plans for an interdisciplinary course at Spring Hill College (IDS 394: Wired) and grew into blog posts and eventually this chapter. See my previous blog posts on the Recipe for Digital Curation of Your Online Persona and the Global Interdisciplinary College Course. Below is the abstract for my chapter.

ABSTRACT

With each blog post, tweet, and online project, Internet users are building their online reputation whether they want to or not. In the absence of professional branding, users’ online presence contributes vastly to what brands them. Through critical digital pedagogy, teachers and students question all technology practices (e.g., self, school, society). This chapter addresses the safety, security, and perception of their online data through self-determined prevention, weeding, and branding based on their short- and long-term goals. Methods, resources, and a lesson plan are provided as guidance to support students’ well-being pertaining to the online dimensions of their academic and personal lives. Strategies discussed include online identity system checks to review current digital footprint and data vulnerabilities, contemplation of technology usage in terms of self-care and responsible citizenship, and curation and development of their online persona. These participatory practices address two of the ISTE Standards for Students regarding digital citizenship.


The book’s release date was October 2019. There are many interesting chapters on school safety from many different perspectives including the marginalized. If interested in purchasing, let me know and I’ll provide you with a 40% discount coupon code.

I presented some of the curation strategies mentioned in the book at the Association of Educational Communications and Technology’s annual conference held in Las Vegas, NV this fall. My session was hosted by the Culture, Learning, and Technology special interest group in a new free workshop-style Inspire session. It was titled, Safeguard Your Online Persona by Using Various Techniques and Technologies. It was well received! See my AECT blog post with slidesI’ve learned so much from taking a deep dive into this topic to write this chapter and look forward to sharing it with you.

References

Huffman, P., Loyles, S., Albritton, S., & Green, C. (2020). Leveraging technology to improve school safety and student wellbeing. Hershey, PA: IGI Global. doi:10.4018/978-1-7998-1766-6

Rogers, S. (2020). Curation of your online persona through self-care and responsible citizenship: Participatory digital citizenship for secondary education. In S. P. Huffman, S. Loyless, S. Albritton, & C. Green (Eds.), Leveraging Technology to Improve School Safety and Student Wellbeing. Hershey, PA: IGI Global. doi:10.4018/978-1-7998-1766-6


Sandra Annette Rogers, Ph.D.

Teacherrogers Products
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com

A Rubric to Identify Online Course Plans for a Community of Inquiry

This blog was originally posted on the AACE Review (Rogers, 2018).

Community of Inquiry

A community of inquiry (COI) is what it sounds like—people gather to learn from each other. I argue that a COI can be preplanned to engender a robust learning environment. What that entails is under investigation. For instance, a query of COI educational research on the EdTechLib database garnered 6500 articles. “The ‘community’ in “community of inquiry” is not defined by time or space. A common question, problem, or interest helps to forge the connection” (Shields, 1999, para. 2).

Historically, interdisciplinary scholarly communities have been around since the time of Theagenes of Rhegium who orally interpreted texts to pupils in the 6th century B.C.E. (Hornblower & Spawforth, 1998). Those ancient Greek gatherings were generally teacher-centered in a unidirectional flow of information between the teacher and listening participants until eventually taking on the Socratic method of shaping pupils’ understanding through questioning for critical thinking in the 3rd century B.C.E.

As for the American educational setting, the foundations of a COI can be found in John Dewey’s writing and reform efforts, which were influenced by Charles Sanders Pierce’s logic of inquiry for scientific methods and Jane Addams’ pragmatic approach to social analysis (Shields, 1999). For example, Dewey strongly believed that through experience-based learning, students could intellectually address the subject matter with the assistance of their teachers (Dewey, 1938).

Fast forward to computer-mediated instruction, Garrison, Anderson, and Archer (2000) proposed a COI framework for distance education. It includes the following elements they deem essential: social presence (SP), cognitive presence (CP), and teaching presence (TP). According to Google Scholar, their COI framework has been cited academically 4817 times. Based on their research and related literature, my interpretation of the COI presences is as follows:

  • SP is the co-construction of meaning through shared learning experiences to engender student agency from connectedness.
  • CP is the engagement in learning activities that demand higher-order thinking skills.
  • TP refers to feedback and instruction and can be presented through the instructor or student-led activities.

Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric ©

The online course syllabus serves as a plan of action that can be utilized for discussing continuous improvement between course design collaborators (i.e., instructional designers, course developers, instructors). To that end, I developed a rubric to evaluate online instructors’ planned interactions for delivering computer-mediated instruction based on their syllabi. It is used to analyze proposed interaction treatments (ITs) such as student-student opportunities for discussion, not the actual course. Our purpose was to determine the inclusion and strength of ITs to provide instructional design (ID) feedback to online instructors regarding their course plans. The underlying theoretical premise being the more interactive the course, the higher the level of student satisfaction and course achievement. Cummins, Bonk, and Jacobs (2002) conducted a similar syllabi study that looked at formats and levels of communication of online courses from colleges of education.

The rubric’s purpose is to provide a pragmatic solution to prevent problematic teacher-led (passive knowledge) online courses with little student interaction nor rigorous academic challenges. The Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric© is based on general concepts from Garrison, Anderson, and Archer’s (2000) COI framework, quality distance education rubrics (California State University-Chico, 2009; Johnson, 2007; Quality Matters™, 2014; & Roblyer & Wiencke, 2004), and significant literature. It consists of the following categories: ID for CP, technology tools for COI, COI loop for SP, support for learner characteristics, and instruction and feedback for TP. The 5-point rubric has the following scale for the criteria: low, basic, moderate, above average, and exemplary. Points awarded determine the course’s potential level of engendering an online COI (i.e., low, moderate, or high). See rubric.

Content Analysis Research of Online Course Syllabi

Rogers and Van Haneghan (2016) conducted the initial research utilizing the rubric with two raters. Good interrater-reliability agreement was obtained in the review of 23 undergraduate and graduate education online course syllabi, intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) = .754, p < .001 and 95% CI [.514, .892]. Results indicated the potential for above-average CP (M = 4.7); however, SP (M = 3.1) was moderate, and TP (M = 2.7) was basic. Rogers and Khoury (2018) replicated the study at a different institution across disciplines with 31 syllabi; those findings mirrored the previous study’s levels of COI presences indicating a weakness in TP. For action research, the rubric criteria and results can serve as talking points between instructional designers and course developers to address gaps. Table 1 provides common ID feedback based on our 2018 syllabi analysis.

Table 1

Common Feedback Based on the Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric Analysis

Rubric Category Instructional Design Recommendations
Instructional Design for Cognitive Presence Include higher order thinking activities such as case analysis, papers that require synthesis or evaluation of peer, self, and/or product. See the list of cognitive activities in the Online Course Design Guide in Table 3.
Education Technology for COI · Add group work for collaborating on projects with Google Hangouts or Skype, so students can learn from each other.

· Use Schoology’s Media Album for students to share their projects and obtain peer feedback. For example, students could narrate a PowerPoint project and save as MP4 to create a video presentation to add to a digital portfolio.

COI Loop for Social Presence · Provide a rubric for discussions to make the criteria clear.

· Provide discussions on readings to enhance learning from each other.

Support for Learner Characteristics

 

· Add the College’s accommodation statement.

· Provide links to academic tutoring services.

· Provide strategies for remediation and/or resources for building background knowledge.

Instruction and Feedback for Teaching Presence · Add specific online virtual office hours and format options. For example, use Skype, Google Hangouts, or FaceTime with your smartphone for human interaction.

· Describe direct instruction. Will there be narrated PowerPoints, audio summaries, lecture notes, or commercial programs?

· Add information on feedback response time and format.

References

Cummings, J. A., Bonk, C. J., & Jacobs, F. (2002). Twenty-first century college syllabi: Options for online communication and interactivity. Internet & Higher Education, 5(1), 1.

Dewey, J. (1938). Experience and education. The Kappa Delta Pi Lecture Series. New York, NY: Collier Books.

Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: Computer conferencing in higher education. The Internet and Higher Education 2(2-3), 87-105. doi:10.1016/s1096-7516(00)00016-6

Hornblower, S., & Spawforth, A. (1998). The Oxford companion to classical civilization. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Johnson, E. S. (2007). Promoting learner-learner interactions through ecological assessments of the online environment. Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 3(2). Retrieved from http://jolt.merlot.org/vol3no2/johnson.htm

QM Higher Education Rubric Fifth Edition. (2014). Quality Matters. Retrieved from https://www.qualitymatters.org/sites/default/files/PDFs/StandardsfromtheQMHigherEducationRubric.pdf

Roblyer, M., & Wiencke, W. (2004). Exploring the interaction equation: Validating a rubric to assess and encourage interaction in distance courses. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 8(4).

Rogers, S., & Khoury, S. (2018, October). Rubric to evaluate online course syllabi plans for engendering a community of inquiry: Round II. Paper presented at the meeting of the Association of Educational Technology & Communications, Kansas City, MO.

Rogers, S., & Van Haneghan, J. (2016). Rubric to evaluate online course syllabi plans for engendering a community of inquiry. Proceedings of Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference, 349-357. Chesapeake, VA: AACE.

Rubric for Online Instruction. (2009). Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching. California State University-Chico. Retrieved from http://www.csuchico.edu/tlp/resources/rubric/rubric.pdf

Shields, P. M. (1999). The community of inquiry: Insights for public administration from Jane Addams, John Dewy and Charles S. Pierce. Archives of the Digital Collections at Texas State University. Retrieved from https://digital.library.txstate.edu/bitstream/handle/10877/3979/fulltext.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y


Sandra Annette Rogers, Ph.D.

Teacherrogers Products
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com

Join me at AERA 2019 in Toronto

Sandra Rogers standing near AERA conference sign celebrating 100 years

I’ll be attending my second conference of the American Educational Research Association (#AERA19) this year. The theme is ‘Leveraging Education Research in a Post-Truth Era: Multimodal Narratives to Democratize Evidence.’  It will be held in Toronto, Canada from April 5-9th at the Metro Toronto Conference Centre. I was impressed with last year’s conference but a bit overwhelmed. Hopefully, with the help of their conference app, I’ll find the sessions I need.

View this link to see the poster for Dr. Khoury and my session: Rubric to Analyze Online Course Syllabi Plan for Engendering a Community of Inquiry: Round II. Come join me on Saturday morning, April 6, from 8:00 to 9:30am in the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 300 Level, Hall C. It’s hosted by the Division C – Section 3b: Technology-Based Environments in the subunit for Distance and Online Education. I’ll be sharing copies of my Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric.

I’ve shared our research paper on the AERA online Repository.  Read this blog page to learn more about our study. My hope is that it will be replicated to validate the rubric and improve not only instructors’ syllabi but teaching and learning in distance education. Let me know if you’re interested in replicating our study.

Are you going to AERA? Let’s connect in Toronto!

Sandra Annette Rogers, PhD

Teacherrogers Products
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com

Join me at AECT in Kansas City, MO!

Photo of Sandra Annette Rogers
Say hello if you see me.

The Association for Educational Communications & Technology (AECT) is, in my humble opinion, the premier association for instructional designers. My professors in my doctoral studies had been promoting this professional organization and their educational technology standards to their students. I finally attended the AECT conference last year and was blown away by the professional level of everyone I met and how cordial they were to newcomers. This year, their 2018 conference will be held in Kansas City, MO from October 23-27 at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown. I’ll be there, so let me know if you plan to attend. For AECT members, I placed my slides and research paper on the new conference online portal.

This time around, I’ll be presenting on my latest research and giving a workshop on the Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric that  I co-developed with Dr. Van Haneghan. It serves as a great collaboration tool to provide feedback to instructors and for syllabi content analysis for action research. Here’s my schedule:

Wed, Oct 24, 9:00am to 12:00pm, Marriott, Room-Bennie Morten B

Use of Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric for Course Developers and Collaborators, Drs. Rogers & Khalsa

Workshop – Registration Required
The syllabus serves as an action plan, which can be used as a resource for collaboration with instructional designers. In this session, participants will discuss how the Online Community of Inquiry Syllabus Rubric© (Rogers & Van Haneghan, 2016) can be used to pinpoint course development discussions on cognitive, social, and teaching presence for distance education instructors. Research and development of the rubric, a worked sample, commonly shared feedback, and rubric rater training will be provided.


Division of Distance Learning

Thu, Oct 25, 9:40 to 10:05am, Marriott, Room-Julia Lee A

Rubric to Evaluate Online Course Syllabi Plans for Engendering a Community of Inquiry: Round II, Drs. Rogers & Khoury

We replicated a research study that analyzed online course syllabi with the Online Community of Inquiry (COI) Syllabus Rubric© (Rogers & Van Haneghan, 2016). The rubric consists of the following elements: instructional design for cognitive presence, technology tools for COI, COI loop for social presence, support for learner characteristics, and instruction and feedback for teaching presence. We reviewed 31 syllabi across disciplines and found above average cognitive presence, average social presence, and basic teaching presence.

#AECT2018 #elearning #communityof inquiry #edtech

 

An Observer’s Notes on the Socratic Method in Action

Scorates talking to a man who is eagerly listening at his side.
Image source: Wikimedia
Here are my notes from the dialectic dialogue of the Socratic Seminar: An International Forum on Socratic Teaching held at the Association of Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) conference in Jacksonville, Florida in 2017.  I attended to learn more about the #Socratic method in general but also to learn how to apply it to the academic task of advising doctoral students’ dissertation writing. This is what occurred in a simulated environment with a doctoral student, her advisor, and a panel of experts. It was the most amazing thing I’ve ever seen offered at a conference—and far few people saw it, as the panel outnumbered the attendees.  I took notes for future reference and also to share with the student who was the target for this activity.
 
Introduction by Adviser, Dr. Abbas Johari: “This is a respectful dialogue between master and student….An example would be guided questions for the learner…Panelists should not make a statement but bring her to an understanding of a concept via questioning.”
Topic of Dissertation:  The student, Cheng Miaoting, gave a brief overview of her dissertation titled,  Technology Acceptance of LMS in Postsecondary Schools in Hong Kong.
MethodologyStudent used survey and interview methods to address several variables (e.g., SES, environment, context) based on the technology acceptance model (TAM 3).
Panels’ Questions: Each expert asked the student a question while she listened. I was not always able to attribute who said what as I feverishly took notes. Please understand the missing attributions.  See link below for panelists’ names.
  1. What is the problem? Tech or culture?
  2. What are you expecting to find? Recommendation for action? The assumption is __________.
  3. What are the assumptions underlying acceptance? Why is this good? Response to facilitate learning?
  4. Which theory will you use and why?
  5. Which variables affect learning?
Dr. Michael Thomas’ statement: “Tool has no agenda as in gun law. Is it possible to argue if a bad thing?” He recommended seeing Technological Sublime (aka Machine Messiah).
Dr. Amy Bradshaw’s statement: “What is modernity with Chinese characteristics?” Deficit ideology where X fixes them, whereas X is tech, mainland Chinese are needing a fix and solution is technology.
Adviser’s Guidance to Student: He told his student to address the master’s guidance by asking the following questions or to paraphrase what she had learned. She had a question about the term ‘factors’ in research.
Panel Questions continued:
6. What type of psychological adaptation will you use? Acculturation Framework? Cat mentioned Hofstede’s but panel discouraged it based on its hostility and stereotypical frame.
7. Fundamentally, what is the burning question you want to answer? The human question—why you want to do it. Solve one problem at a time.
8. How do things change in society? Need theory on societal change.
9. Why are immigrants coming to HK?
10. What are schools doing to address this? (Here is where you addressed the practical significance or human question, which was the missing piece of training for technology.)
11. Have you looked at other countries tech adaption for immigrants?
Adviser called for Debrief: The student acknowledged the need to focus study and reflect. She will reach out to other researchers to negotiate understanding, as was done today. She will talk in practical terms and not just in research methodology.
Panel Debriefed with Suggestions: 
  • Free yourself, but 1-directional.
  • What is the one thing they do not want you to talk about? That is your research questions.
  • Focus on commonality and not just differences.
  • Find ways to hear immigrants to inform study.
  • Remember the humane as well as the human.
  • Have an open mind in research design—always question research design.
  • Look at the polarity of human existence. What is up/down? In/out? What is not there? What’s obvious? Hidden? Who implemented these types of change?
  • Listen to your adviser.
  • See work by Charles Reigeluth and Carl Rogers.

Here is a link to the #AECT conference abstract and list of panel members.


Sandra Annette Rogers, Ph.D.

Teacherrogers Products
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschooler, Staff, Not Grade Specific - TeachersPayTeachers.com