A former student posted this to my FB page today. It made me stop and think. I can only hope that I’ve impacted some of their lives the way that Randy impacted his students and colleagues. I’m not sure I deserve the comparison…

Alex H: Hey Debby, you have seen the Last Lecture right. The professor that gives the lecture reminds me of you alot. Here is the link if you haven’t seen it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ji5_MqicxSo It’s about an hour long, but its worth every second to watch. You should also recomend your students to watch it.

Me: I have seen it… and I have the book that was made from it. It’s a very humbling thing to watch… thank you for thinking of me when you saw it. That, too, is humbling 🙂



“A teacher that can be replaced by a machine, should be.”

~ Arthur C. Clarke to Sugata Mitra http://on.ted.com/8fRd (an idea worth spreading!)

student comments

The one variable I have noticed from taking online courses is the content and layout of the webpage.  I have enrolled in classes that when you open the syllabus it causes your eyes to cross and in my opinion this makes students panic at first.  I have to say, not to suck up to the teacher, but this course is laid out very well in my opinion.
~M.H. (CSCI101, student survey, Fall 2010)

This class is my hardest class, but I am learning and using a lot of what I learn.
~A.W. (CSCI101, Week 8 Checking In, Fall 2010)

When I first enrolled in this class I had no clue how anything regarding my computer worked. You had asked what type of system I was going to us and I thought you were talking in another language. In just a short time I have learned what type of programs my computer has, and most of all how to protect my computer from unauthorized access. I have also learned how to download software into my computer and most important of all how to find it once I have completed the download! Boy that was interesting and easy! Who knew I could create special folders to hold all of my stuff in. I also had my reservation on the use of tweeter. I am a very private person and do not like to give any information to people whom I do not know. I have learned however that not only can I control what I put in tweeter but also I can find out information faster than what my local news can give it to me. Also the news does not always provide information that is important to everyone they might omitt something that I feel would be important to me. I specilly like the timely manner in which you can communicate with your professor and classmates. I think i’m getting the hang of tweeter and like it.
~E.M.  (CSCI101, Week 8 Checking In, Fall 2010)

The thing that is “going well” for me in this class is the way it is broken down as well as the fact that its online and I can make my own schedule.  Going into this class I thought was not going to be a challenging class however I was pleasantly surprised. As for improvement, I see nothing that this class lacks for an entry level computer class.  If anything its more advanced than I would deem a beginner class to be but by no means is it overwhelming.  I honestly thought I had a firm grasp on most of these topics but I have been shown the light.
~M.H.  (CSCI101, Week 8 Checking In, Fall 2010)

The thing I like best about taking your class is you’ve taken the scary out of using and enjoying the PC. I used to be so nervous about unknowingly doing damage to our computer or giving away the family farm. Now I’m much more equipped to succeed in college classes because I am better equipped with basic computer skills. Plus I have a Resource Folder filled with How To handouts and helpful websites. Thank you!!
~D.H. (CSCI 70, Fall 2010)

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Full Body Experience




Put to Good Use

It’s always nice to hear that a student can actually use what they are learning in my classes 🙂


Student Comments

At the end of every semester, I do my own course evaluation. These are some of the comments that got made pertaining to my online summer CSCI 101 Introduction to Computer Information Systems class.

Once again, I really liked this course. I liked the communication from everyone and the great learning experience!  I’m walking away from this course with more knowledge than when I began. Thank you!
~Grace Holcomb

Just wanted to say what ever happens with my outcome of the class, I wanted to say thank you and tell you, your layout and curriculum is nicely layed out. It seems the class it setup for computer illiterates to easily learn the basics and that’s cool.
~Mike Lowden

The instructor- She both knowledgeable and considerate….the perfect combination. From an academic perspective, there was nothing she didn’t know and able to teach in an understandable manner. From a personal perspective, she was supportive, considerate and respectful and this went a long way to encouraging me and allowing me to learn.

Finally, I wanted to thank you one more time for BEING THE PERSON/ PROFESSOR YOU ARE.  As I shared prior, this represented the final class in my college career and I couldn’t have asked for a better experience.  Not only did I begin to overcome my fear of technology and build ability, but I was touched by both an extremely capable/ knowledgeable and caring/considerate person.  You exemplify everything right about the profession of teaching- the commitment to education that acts to support the process of learning (as opposed to simply performance driven tasks) by creating a considerate, respectful and genuine community environment.
~ Taylor Demulder

What I liked most was when the class as a whole were encouraged to help and cooperate with each other on assignments. Even on tests which was cool in my opinion. Most often teachers tell you to help but not that much. This way of teaching is my favorite. It let me take the assignments at my own pace with enough time to finish.
~ Mike Modlinski

I loved the projects we did for the course. It was very fun and hands on for me.
~ Y.C.

I liked how we could ask questions and they were answered right away. I also liked how everyone in the discussions participated and were open-minded about things.
~Dawnesha Frazier

I still can not believe Screenr, i just can’t stop talking about it. The Professor is good at setting you at ease.

~Anthony Aldridge

Most courses I take are filled with assignments which I would consider “busy work” and the knowledge I acquire from them will never be used outside of class. This course however, is filled with assignments which prove to be tools that will be used inside and outside of the classroom environment in future endeavors. I am definately taking away more than just a grade from this course.
~Shameka Hurt

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Dream a Little

Tweet from a student in my ITMGMT classes,
re: a phone conversation we had this week.