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Simple and clear explanation of process types

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Monday, 10 Oct 2016, 23:35

The following clip provides a good explanation of process types although, of course, there is not really enough context for the types and explanation of ambiguous types.  However, students on courses like E304 and E852 might find it useful:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5sOJy4nOwKo&feature=youtu.be

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Summer work

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Monday, 29 Aug 2016, 12:43

For the past couple of summers, I have been working at the University of Reading on courses for English for Academic Purposes lecturers from universities in China and I have taught one group of these teachers this year. 

However, there is a new course that is about to start its second week.  This is for teachers of other subjects at Chinese universities who are interested in teaching through English (English as a Medium of Instruction).  This is an interesting new angle on my work as the focus is on the methodology of teaching through language, which resonates with the ideas of writers like Halliday (2004[1980]).  So, there is a need to focus on meaning and intelligibility to an even greater extent than usual and there is perhaps less of a focus on accuracy,


Halliday, M.A.K. (2004 [1980]) ‘Three aspects of children’s language development: learning language, learning through language, learning about language’, in Halliday, M.A.K. (ed.) The Language of Early Childhood: Vol. 4 The Collected Works of M.A.K. Halliday, London, Continuum.

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Grammar 2.0

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Thursday, 5 Nov 2015, 15:21

I came across the following article today.

http://www.theguardian.com/science/head-quarters/2015/nov/05/roots-language-what-makes-us-different-animals

I found it generally interesting but feel it misses opportunities to explore issues and ended up feeling slightly disappointed.  The sub heading Grammar 1.0 was presumably making a parallel with web 1.0.  I assumed there was going to be a discussion of Grammar 2.0.  This then made me think about what Grammar 2.0 might be and whether this was an appropriate term for SFL.  There seem to be parallels in terms of the focus on the social and language being seen as something that is produced by people for their needs rather than being an idealised resource that users simply receive passively.

Does anyone have any thoughts on whether it is useful to think of Grammar 2.0?

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New courses about to start

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Tuesday, 29 Sep 2015, 17:46

I am about to start tutoring on courses about to enter new presentations (E852. L161, LB160, L185).  It is slightly confusing that for some courses, I can post introductory messages on the Tutor Group Forum but students cannot reply - I am not really sure why this distinction is made.

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Multimodal specialist forum

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I am currently involved in moderating the E852 multimodality forum.  This has always been an  interesting experience and we are currently discussing some political manifestos.  However, I reflected on how little I use multimodal affordances in this blog and have the following hypotheses for why this is:

- perhaps I do not think in a very visual way

- I tend to post fairly frequently but quickly

- my posts tend to be quite short.

I suspect the latter two are the main reasons.

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Committed students (continued)

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Saturday, 29 Mar 2014, 22:15

I have commented before on the inspiring commitment of many students and this was underlined again this week by the example of a student who woke up for an OU Live tutorial at 4 am where he lives.

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"Intensity" in OU Live

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The term "intensity" came up in an OU Live session yesterday where some students commented on how busy the tools.  They commented on how they were listening, speaking and also writing in the text box as well as reading the comments and looking at the whiteboard.

It is hard for the tutor and the participants to follow some of the strands that are going on.  I suppose there is a tendency to ensure that the sessions are seen as being valuable.

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OU anywhere

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Wednesday, 27 Aug 2014, 13:23

I have recently downloaded this to my phone and iPad.  It seems quite useful although not all of the modules I teach seem to have content available.  I would have thought it would be most useful on tablets.

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Elluminate and committed students

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I offered an Elluminate session last night for students on E852 and I was extremely impressed by how committed students were.  The session took place at 9pm GMT but students attended from Russia (where it was a 1 am start) and Korea (6am).  Even for those in Europe, it was late by the finish (well after 11 pm). Even for the few in Britain, the timing was not necessarily convenient with aspects of family life providing distractions.

So, it seems that many students are willing to devote time for the chance to interact in real time by the best methods we have that are practical.

 

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Elluminate meetings

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I have had a couple of Elluminate meetings recently with new students from my E852 groups.

It has seemed to me that it is difficult to encourage deep thought on Elluminate and the more exploratory talk (Mercer 2000) does not really occur.  One reason for this is that wait time in Elluminate seems very awkward - much more than in face to face student where it is possible to see whether students are thinking or just completely stumped. 

I put these thoughts to one of the groups at the end of the session and there was quite an interesting response with one saying that my view was the result of being a man.  This comment seemed to resonate with the other (all were female) students in the session.   Perhaps this relates to what Rovai (2001: 41) calls “socio-emotional messages” and they feel that the sense of belonging is more important than the content.

This seems reasonable as students can really theorise and reflect on complex issues in the asynchronous forums but Elluminate helps them to feel part of the course.

Mercer, N. (2000) Words and Minds: how we use language to think together. London: Routledge.
Rovai, A.P. (2001) “Building classroom community at a distance: a case study” Education Technology Research and Development, Vol. 49, No. 4, 2001, pp. 33–48

 

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Michael Rosen on grammar

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I have increasingly become aware of Michael Rosen's blog and it is a good read that is of relevance to the E303 and E852 courses.  The following posting should be of interest to students on both courses:

http://michaelrosenblog.blogspot.com/2012/01/grammar-rules-descriptions-and-systems.html

I would be interested in any comments.

 

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sign language and communication

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An article from "The Guardian" about sign language and the importance of members of the family being able to communicate with each other:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jan/15/deaf-children-families-signing-access

This overlaps with some E852 themes such as multimodality and learning through language.

 

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first assignment for E852

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Friday, 6 Jan 2012, 10:57

I have just finished marking the first assignments for E852.  Most students did well, probably most did better than those writing the first assignments for E844 used to.  Perhaps the three part structure helped and it also seems that more people are coming on to this course having had experience of previous Masters modules.

The more I look at the E852, the better I think the course is.  There are some great readings coming up as well.

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Evaluating online sources

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Edited by Patrick Andrews, Tuesday, 15 Nov 2011, 15:52

Some useful guidelines can be found here:

http://edsitement.neh.gov/reference-shelf/tips-for-better-browsing/evaluating-online-resources

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Elluminate again

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Did another Elluminate session yesterday.  I think that one of the grreatest benefits is that students can share skills.  For example, one of the students told the rest of the group how to do screenshots and this seemed to be reassuring and some of the rest of the group seemed to appreciate a spoken explanation in addition to the one on the course website.
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Elluminate session for E852

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It was good being able to talk to students on the course yesterday and I think Elluminate can play an important affective role in bringing students together and giving extra momentum to their studies.  Does anyone have thoughts on this?
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E852

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This new course is just about to start officially.  It is replacing the E844 course and although there are areas of overlap, it does have quite a lot of new content and makes much more use of the course website as opposed to printed materials.  It seems much more modern.
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