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

I am a tax attorney working as the manager of the tax curriculum in a large public accounting firm.

Academically, I really do love learning about learning. I also enjoy the study of tax law and how it integrates into other areas of law, especially marital property in community property states. Personally, I love languages, history, and sociology, along with good fiction.

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

I predominantly use laptops for schoolwork. I also use my smartphone to check email and view course requirements. I will sometimes read on my tablet if a text is available, but I prefer to read in physical printed form whenever I can.

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

I use Blackboard most, as that is the online platform used by Mason. I also use the Blackboard mobile app. I have used Safari Queue and Kindle as reading apps for ebooks as well.

I use George Mason’s library site and its access points to many online journal libraries for academic research. When assigned, I view videos on YouTube, blog postings, and other supplementary materials.

I of course use Microsoft Office to prepare deliverables for class (Word and PowerPoint). We are also using GIMP image software in EDIT 575.

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?

To be honest, I prefer to do a large portion of my learning management in dead-tree analog form. I think on paper with a pen, and though I love the ability to use technology to augment and broaden my learning, I find most digital learning tools interfere with my process.

This makes me sound like such a Luddite. 🙂 I do really love technology! I just prefer to plan my learning and my process without having to learn so many new tools.

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

My ideal PLE is one that is simple, clean, stable, and user-friendly. I don’t want too much animation in the user interface – I’d like a simple nav bar on the left to move through the interface, with a link for every major content area.

I would like an email tool with pre-loaded class members’ emails, but also the ability to add other addresses outside the system should a group member need to use alternate communication methods. I would like a document sharing site, a discussion board, and a private work area for major projects.

I would like all feedback related to grades or performance to be private to the affected parties.

Tara McCook – EDIT 730

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *