Who are you, and what do you like to learn about? (academically, professionally, and/or personally)

I personally like to learn about psychology in school as well as psychological and psychosocial needs of children within medical settings. Personally I really like to learn about bullying and anti-bullying programs around the country as well as psychological impacts of being bullied. I also like to learn about benefits of nonmedical therapies including animal therapy.

What hardware do you use to learn? (Eg. smart phone, tablet, laptop, desktop)

The hardware that I use the most for learning is my laptop and I hardly ever use a desktop anymore. I do use my Iphone constantly but I don’t usually use it to learn, it tends to be used more for communication and social media. I have an Ipad that I got in 2012 and used in my classes frequently in the 2012-2013 school year for taking notes, but after that year many of my professors would not allow us to use technology to take notes on, so I haven’t really used my Ipad for several years.

What software do you use to learn? (Eg. search engines, mobile apps, social networks, eBooks, digital libraries, wikis, blogs, videos, podcasts)

Software I use to learn:
Google-always google
Online journal website-Sage Journals
Ebooks through the Kindle app for Iphone
Audible app to read textbooks or assigned readings to me
My schools online library
Wikipedia occassionally but often not accepted as credible source
Ted talks
Netflix for educational movies/tv shows

I use things like Facebook, snapchat, and instagram for my own purposes as a form of communication

What digital tools do you wish you had access to for learning? (Eg. any graphic organizers, mind-mapping tools, resource management tools, progress tracking tools, design tools, etc.) Why?

Honestly, all of the things you have listed as examples are all things i wish we as students had access to. Especially when it comes to the graphic organizers, mind mapping tools, resource management tools, progress tracking tools, all of these things would help students stay more focused and organized which could lead to greater success within the classroom.

I also personally really wish all professors would allow us to use ipads or laptops to take notes during class because for me personally, taking notes on a computer allows me to be more organized with my notes and helps me retain the information more so than when i write it out.

I also really wish all students had access to all textbooks being on an app like audible or some program that allows students to have the readings read out loud to them. As a person with a neck problem as well as issues with a sleep disorder which causes excessive daytime sleepiness which is made worse when staring at one thing for too long. Having something read out loud to me allows me to avoid holding my head in the same position for too long and therefore avoids extra pain. It also means that I am not staring at endless words which after not too long causes me to fall asleep even if I try really hard not to. But if I am able to be walking back and forth or moving around while having it read to me, I can avoid these sleep attacks.

What might your ideal Personal Learning Environment (PLE) look like?

Ipads/tablets/laptops being allowed or even provided to each student for classes to take notes on if they would like to.

A classroom designed in such a way that students can sit at regular desks or can also stand at standing desks, or switch back and forth. Having a classroom that allows for movement during class is really important for physical reasons (sitting so much has negative impacts on ones health) as well as psychological reasons as well as simply reasons for retaining information being taught.

I also think having smart boards in every classroom which would allow professors to take notes on the board and then have it automatically translated into a word document that can be sent directly to the students. Professors can often go way too fast in class with notes as they write just a short bit on the board but then they elaborate and then the students are left trying to write super fast to get everything but end up missing things, so having notes translated into a word document can help students make sure they didn’t miss anything. This could also be done with programs that use a microphone to hear the professor speak and it translates that into a word document. The other issue is that often professors don’t have very good handwriting and students wont be able to read what is written on the board but if the professor is going so fast, they might not be able or feel comfortable asking the professor to stop and say what it is that they wrote.

Alexa Curtiss
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