Did you ever show friends or colleagues City Tech’s OpenLab, only to have them ask, “How can I have an OpenLab at my school/institution/organization?!”
The answer is Commons in a Box OpenLab!
Please share information about the NYCDH Week workshop introducing CBOX OpenLab, tomorrow, 2/7, at the CUNY Graduate Center:
UPDATE: Slides from the 2/7 workshop
This workshop introduces Commons In A Box OpenLab: free, open source software that enables anyone to create a commons space specifically designed for open learning, where students, faculty, and staff can collaborate across disciplinary boundaries and share their work openly with one another and the world.
Funded by a generous grant from the NEH’s Office of Digital Humanities, the project brings together Commons In A Box (CBOX; http://commonsinabox.org/) — the software that powers NYCDH — and City Tech’s OpenLab platform for teaching, learning, and collaboration (https://openlab.citytech.cuny.edu/). The result is a teaching-focused version of CBOX that provides a powerful and flexible alternative to costly proprietary systems, and is already being adopted at CUNY and beyond.
We will begin by introducing CBOX OpenLab and demonstrating its features and functionality, using examples drawn from City Tech’s OpenLab and BMCC’s new installation. We will then engage participants in group discussion of how they might use (or are already using) CBOX OpenLab, and the benefits and challenges of open learning.
Equipment: Laptops helpful, but not required
Thursday evening brought the last Open Pedagogy event of the semester, Getting Hands-On with Research Projects on the OpenLab. A working session, the workshop focused on tools and strategies to implement research practices on the site. Faculty who attended were especially interested in exploring methods to support web-based student research. The event began with OpenLab Community Team members presenting strong examples of research and collaboration on the OpenLab, including Prof. Raffi Katchadourian’s professional portfolio, the collaborative Opening Gateways site, and Prof. Jody Rosen’s interactive map assignment, a Being in Brooklyn Walking Tour.
Participants then broke into working groups to begin to implement particular strategies according to their needs. For example, one group discussed integrating visual mathematical elements, like graphs, into posts as a way to build resources for students in Economics classes. An OpenLab Community Team member is now looking into possible WordPress plugins to enable this kind of activity. Another group considered using the OpenLab to facilitate the design and implementation of a survey, as well as its results. How exciting to see faculty members begin to implement ideas that they had been developing in Open Pedagogy events throughout the semester!
To that end, thank you to all who participated in Open Pedagogy events this spring! We look forward to following your ideas, projects, research, and collaboration on the OpenLab!
The Writing Across the Curriculum program’s final workshop of the semester, Tuesday May 6, will focus on creative classroom activities that engage active learning and promote student engagement. This sounds like a great opportunity to learn about opening the classroom to creative possibilities!
Download The Creative Classroom poster
Check out the WAC OpenLab site
There’s a workshop today on developing research questions and methodologies for publishing educational research, and I thought how useful this could be for this group. When we work on the OpenLab, we’re building on great projects that have come before us and continue to inspire us, such as other open sites at other CUNY colleges, or the inspiring work that Jim Groom talked about at the OpenLab’s launch. But as much as we’re in good company with those esteemed colleagues, we’re also innovating and experimenting in new ways, ones that others would benefit from learning about. It would be great to think about how the ways in which we adapt our courses for the OpenLab, and adopt open pedagogies, would become the foundation for research projects and publications. If you’re free at 1:00 on Thursday, Febrary 21st, please consider attending. And consider sharing your ideas here to get others engaged in the endeavor!