The most obvious tools to use for a database demonstration for distance students are online guides (Guide on the Side, LibGuide, etc.) or video tutorial tools like Camtasia.

For the database demonstration that I’ve been thinking through, I think I would use a combination of these tools, along with a downloadable PDF with helpful information (such as logging in from off campus).

There wasn’t anything in the Horizon report that jumped out at me as particularly applicable to my object. It’s interesting that part of WoS is data visualization, which the report mentions. I think it could be interesting to see how tools become nested and integrated so that we won’t be able to reasonably talk about distinct tools but instead will have to think in terms of what the learner is trying to do.

Answers to the 5 step integration model:

1. Consider

I’m not sure that these online tools will enhance or change learning overmuch. I’m just not sure. It’s possible that some students will be more motivated by a self-paced set of materials. I do think that it’s possible to be more engaging with video/interactive content, but I think it’s just as easy to push non-engaging lectures into videos so that nothing is new except for the choppy streaming allowed by varying internet speeds.

I think using live online interactions that are also available later as recordings could be better than the purely self-paced materials, but I would want to study the differences before I actually made a choice.

2. Review

The learning objectives for this demonstration are

a) Know the database exists
b) Choose the database appropriately
c) Navigate to/access the database successfully
d) Become familiar with the key features of the database

I feel like b) and d) are the harder pieces to teach here. A) and c) are more process-based and as such, might not be held in memory by students who don’t use the database regularly. In that case, I feel like a document for reference is more important than trying to make sure students can always do those tasks without help.

I think that a video tutorial may actually only work for a modified “lecture” of some of the material. I’m thinking that problem-based activities would be better for the choosing and becoming familiar learning objectives. These could also be assessed more meaningfully than simply asking students if they now know the words “Web of Science.”

I’ve had problems with this presentation topic from the beginning and I’ve found this class to be very helpful in guiding my thinking.