Week 7 Podcasting reflection
I searched for podcasts that would have something to do with Human Performance Technology, but the pickings were slim. One podcaster that had an episode about it is one I will profile. Called EdTech Dojo and hosted by Dr. Joel Gardner and his brother J. Clark Gardner, it focuses on instructional design. I found two of their episodes enlightening.
In one, Dr. Joel Gardner reports from an International Society of Performance Improvement conference in Toronto and gives an overview of what Human Performance Improvement means in the real world. I enjoyed that it’s a discussion between 2 peers, and the questions J. Clark asks are some of the ones I would ask. Some of his digressions are aggravating, but take the good with the less-good, it’s free.
A second podcast has Dr. Joel Clark interviewing Kristy Bloxham about continuous improvement and assessment as it applies to online instruction. I found the way she described using continuous assessment (with real life examples THANK YOU!) very helpful.
She described giving surveys to students 4X per class, anonymously. The students responded much better (75% compared to 5% ) when given a small extra credit incentive. The instructor provided a global response to the class. The outcome was that students were more engaged in the class, and the feedback was generally constructive. She even suggested tossing out a 1 or 2% negative response right off the top, and only paying attention to more widely held responses. Yes!
Her study (2010) is located here: "Using Formative Student Feedback: A Continuous Quality Improvement Approach for Online Course Development"
What I will use in my professional lifeI found the reading (Reiser & Dempsey, chapter 14) unmoving. It’s a comprehensive history of HPI/HPT, but doesn’t tell me in a useful way how it works in practical applications. A source I found more informative is the ISPI rundown of the profession.
It's not about numbers
The important takeaway for me on this topic is that most people want to improve the way they perform. If they are included in the process of making that happen, a lot of the negative connotations of maximizing performance and turning people into “robots” is taken away. It’s not only about increasing productivity, but about achieving a better result. The idea of gap analysis is also a helpful way to frame an approach to a solution. With the University’s emphasis on assessment, it becomes important to remember the softer side of making human performance improvements. A focus on numbers is the wrong way to implement change that anyone will buy into.
Another helpful resource
I searched for a podcast that would feed my interest in creativity and education and found a series of podcasts called Speed of Creativity by Wesley A. Fryer, of Kansas City, MO. Although I can recommend his series–it’s so vast–I am still not sure why he uses Creativity in the title.
There are hundreds of podcasts in Mr. Fryer’s library, and the descriptions he gives are extensive enough to let you know what you are likely to hear. The quality of content and audio varies in an entertaining way. Some are recorded in studio, others while he’s driving on a highway. I listened to one in particular (2014-03-04) that was an hour-long presentation he gave at a Kansas City Professional Council conference. He taped himself giving the presentation that included embedded video. I downloaded the .mp3 file to my phone and listened while I was walking in the morning before work.
Adding value to everyday worklife
I have never truly warmed to podcasting, I’m just not an auditory learner. Unless I am able to take notes as we talk I will certainly forget what you said, I simply don’t recall conversations well enough to report them verbatim. It’s a tribute to the podcasts that I profiled that I was not bored or wandering. I was intrigued all the way through.
One way to use podcasts professionally in my work would be to attach short audio clips to emails to a wide audience that illustrates a point about customer service. An example of good technique can sometimes help people model positive behavior.