2017 in review

This won’t be a big mopey retrospective, but I thought it would be useful to document some of the major things that happened this year. It’s been a doozy. In roughly chronological order…

  • My team continued to be awesome. I’m so fortunate to be a part of such a diverse, thoughtful, and insanely productive team.
  • The Taylor Institute hosted the 2017 University of Calgary Conference on Post-secondary Learning and Teaching. I hosted the Ignite sessions. It was fun. We’ll be doing that again.
  • I was co-author of an article about using a humanoid robot to teach people to assemble mechanical gearboxes, published in ACM HAI 2017.
  • We launched an OER pilot program at the UofC. 10 small grants were given out, to help 10 instructors find, adapt, adopt, or create open educational resources in their courses. We deliberately selected courses with a broad range of disciplines and levels – everything from large first-year courses all the way up to small senior grad courses. We’ll be using what we learn through the pilot to make decisions about how we can support open education (and OERs) more broadly as a university.
  • I got some health news.
  • We wrapped up the first round of EDU strategic planning process, as documented in the department’s ePortfolio.
  • I finished the coursework portion of my PhD program with a 4.0 GPA. Go figure. Now for the easy part. Candidacy, research, dissertation and defence. *cough* The coursework was an amazing experience – working on everything from connecting research methods in performing arts to SoTL, to programming a humanoid robot to reproduce a recorded performance, to playing with data and information visualization.
  • We’re about to launch a new “Learning Technologies Advisory Group”, which will make it much easier to make recommendations for how the learning technologies and platforms offered by the UofC can be adapted and enhanced to make the teaching and learning experiences better.
  • Probably a bunch of other stuff that I’m forgetting at the moment. It was a big year.