#DotDay and the Challenge to Blog

Life has gotten a bit crazy, mainly because I have completely forgotten calculus. Well, that’s not exactly true. For my science education emphasis I must take 2 graduate level science courses. Rather than choosing the easy way out (there are some pretty lame courses that can be used to satisfy this requirement) I decided to take Quantum Mechanics and Evolutionary Microbiology during the same semester. But it’s my last semester of coursework so why not go out in a big ball of flame, right? Interestingly, it’s not the calculus or science concepts that are giving me trouble, it’s the 7th grade Algebra…

So there it is, my excuse for lack of blogging. Until last night during the #caedchat. #DotDay and blogging came up, as in the importance of, and how the lack was felt when it came to making one’s mark, so now my commitment to blogging has been renewed. It helps that there will be a challenge soon, at least according to these Tweets (nothing like putting fellow caedchatters on the spot).

Which started my thought process towards why I haven’t blogged in a while, and why did I blog in the first place? Looking over my earlier blogs made me realize I used to do a lot more reading, uh, well let’s call it ‘non-school related’ reading. And I hung out on Twitter and Google+ more back then. I was able to easily find and learn about educational topics I was passionate about. Things I wanted to blog about.

I lost that habit while preparing for my comprehensive exams and I did not realize until last night how much I missed that feeling of passion. Instead I was caught up in academic reading. Important, but it just does not fuel that passion. And without that passion it is impossible to leave my mark in this world, or to help others to do so. But it’s time to remember why I decided to enroll in the PhD program in the first place. It was certainly not to spend all of my time reading research articles. Rather I hope to make my mark by conducting research with the intent of improving the teaching and learning experience. I would like my mark on education to be improving access for all.

I have read many pro and con arguments on Twitter and elsewhere when comparing online learning to the face to face experience. Whatever you beliefs on this issue, there are those who cannot, for various reasons, attend face to face courses. Therefore effective online methods must be understood and implemented if we hope to allow educational access to all. Ah, the passion is back J. So on #DotDay I make a promise to myself to read outside of academia more, to help fuel the fires of my passion on education for all, and to blog with my new blogging buds!

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About Cynthia Clark

I hold a doctorate in curriculum & instruction, with an emphasis in educational technology and science education. I work for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas as the Evaluation and Assessment Specialist for the Center for Research, Evaluation, and Assessment. My current research interests include qualitative responses to course evaluations, both the development of open-ended items and their subsequent analysis.
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