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Larry Davies, Ed.D.
Transcript of Larry Davies, Ed.D.
social media/learning tools
Sample of over 55 Online Academic Courses Developed from 2008 to 2012 at Miami Dade College's Virtual College
Principles of Management
EAP Speech Level 6 (Advanced)
Principles of Business
Introduction to Business Writing
Small Business Management
Strategies and Tactics in Teaching English (K-12)
International Financial Management
Management in a Multi-Cultural Environment
St. Thomas University
Online Teacher Training Course
Miami Dade College
2004 - 2008
Larry Davies, Ed.D.
English Language Teacher Training
Oxford Seminars 2007-Present
Sampling of Various Projects and Materials Created
Typical "Look and Feel"
Chapter Overview Page
Chapter "Look and Feel"
Overview Page with Interaction
Video Project Producer
Interactions with Raptivity
Interactive scenario with SmartBuilder
This video is not my work, but it is very much my philosophy of where instructional design needs to go in order to be effective, even in academic circles. Though eLearning centers on changing behaviors, usually in a corporate setting, it can be applied to academics. The key lies in designing project work for students in the various disciplines.
“Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world.”
― Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Oppressed
I taught my first class to 66 students in a rural high school in Kenya, East Africa, in 1986. Looking back, I realize that I had also been involved in learning and using instructional design. For the two years I was in Kenya, I had to teach students who had no access to books or any other learning materials. I learned to make good use of what was at hand. I still do that today, just that now I have to think about designing for iOS and Android tablets and smartphones and 21st Century learners. It's exactly the same; it's also entirely different.
The next screen you will see highlights the culmination of 2.5 years of working with top administrators at St. Thomas University, where I was Manager of Academic Technology. I was able to make the case that online teaching and course development was the wave of the very near future. I was able to show the assistant provost the importance of developing a full teacher training regimen for online teaching. The six-week course that I helped to develop was anchored in adult learning theory, while at the same time tempered down for current faculty who had a very low proficiency with technology. In all, I designed, developed and held over 25 different types of face-to-face workshops ranging from technical use to pedagogical use of technology in online course design. If I were still at St. Thomas, the workshops would now all be fully online and fully interactive.
I've tried my hand at teaching English online through private lessons. This was a quick and dirty promotional video I did using iMovie on a Mac.
This longer video was done for a course I recently completed teaching fully online. I would use this to show how teachers teaching a course can work with their students during a live course online by establishing a strong instructor presence.
At MDC, a lot of the technical work I did was re-rendering content that I was not allowed to alter. In addition, I was able to collaborate and lead on a few recent projects that required some creative work. Here are examples of both types of work.
We'd made efforts to standardize the "look and feel" of our courses. Not all developers have agreed to this, though, but for those who do, we inserted overviews into every unit and learning module. It took over two years to get developers to buy into this concept, and we were been able to implement this design into most courses. The following is an example from an English for Academic Purposes course.
Within the same course, I had added short preview interaction/overviews so that students could determine if they needed to look at the material for the unit. This work was done in SmartBuilder.
The following two videos are projects I lead, though they are uncredited. Our executive director wanted these materials made for a statewide course repository, so no one was given specific credit.
I adapted the scripts, collaborated with the media department, worked with an assistant director for the actors, and assisted the film editor in turning out these projects, which took six months to complete.
The next image is a screen grab from a simple interaction that I created in Raptivity. We started to add in these types of interactions into courses where developers allow it. We also used SmartBuilder, Adobe Presenter, SoftChalk, Articulate and iSpring to render both Developer made material and Publisher made material into formats that were "look and feel" friendly.
"If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea."
- Antoine de Saint-Exupery, The Little Prince
Also used as the epigraph to my Doctoral Dissertation
A personal portfolio
of work and philosophy
This portfolio is, like everything, a work-in-progress. Please join me as I look first at my professional career, then delve a little bit into my personal life and the lessons I've learned in the various contexts in which I've found myself . My career and life are neither entirely separate, nor are they entirely intertwined.
The sample pencast I made for this course is found at http://bit.ly/KP6cjQ
I learned about Bloom after developing this course, so I would redo all of these outcomes, and many of the activities.
Note: this is the main content, rendered in SoftChalk.
Interactive stories are also called "branching stories" or "Action Mazes" and serve as the basis for a lot of scenario-based learning. I wrote my Master's thesis on interactive video for language teaching and learning, and I still find that simulations such as these are very effective for learning and charting progress. The next few screens are a branching story that I helped to build in SmartBuilder, in collaboration with a jr. ID who is a graphic design specialist. It's not finished, so I can only show a sample of the story structure, and the first few screens of action.
After receiving my BA from UCLA in English, I started writing some Interactive stories in the Peace Corps for my high school students. This is where I discovered that students look for meaningful connections
in what they are learning.
From private language school teacher to Associate Professor of Communication
I did a lot of project work with students and was already pushing the boundaries of technology. The next two images are from Future University - Hakodate, in 2002, where I was an associate professor teaching "English Communication". The first image is my visual syllabus for one of the courses I taught. It shows some of the projects I planned. In the second image, I'm briefing students about a poster session they are about to do, and how it will feed into the larger collaborative project. The class had 40 students, so I had them in eight teams of five students each. Their final product was a flash-based website with information about eight aspects of the city of Hakodate, Japan.
“I had the pleasure of working with Larry Davies at Future University, where we both were founding faculty members of what was then a new university. It was a challenge that Larry took on whole heartedly and intelligently. We worked together closely in curriculum development and coordinated our efforts to improve the quality of the teaching in our department. Larry was a great man to work with and a sensitive and caring teacher. His creativity was evident in the way he worked. He is an idea man, never at a loss for finding a solution, always positive and dedicated to his ideals.”
--Maya Gingery, former Assistant Professor, Future University - Hakodate
“…Larry Davies is a generous visionary, with a wide variety of skills and abilities. I have known Larry for only 6 months but in that time I have been consistently impressed with him as a professional and a person. He is a supportive colleague, committed educator; an-all-around class act…”
--Dr. Isaac Carter, Dean of Students
At St. Thomas, I turned my focus away from classroom teaching and moved into teaching online. I started by training teachers to use ePortfolio software. Within two years, I had moved into training teachers in teaching enhanced, blended and online courses as the Manager of Academic Technology, and top administrator for the school's LMS, Blackboard. I also understood the challenge of working with faculty...that's best summed up in the following 1-minute video...which is obviously not my work, but reflects very much the type of work it entails working with faculty who have never taught online.
2010 was an excellent year. I received my Ed.D., and I was invited back to Japan to talk to English language teachers about the future of education online. I gave several talks across the country on issues relating to online learning from an administrator's point of view. I talked a lot about how learners needed experiences and interactions that were MEANINGFUL, PURPOSEFUL and ENGAGING.
The next two images are from work I did long ago, but which are current projects. I am moving an entire textbook (Learning to Learn Culture) that I made for Japanese students in 1999 and retooling it for self-study and collaboration in "the cloud" with other learners via the iPad. The first image is the entire course as a concept map. The second image, difficult to see, is all about cultural clashes that occur daily in the world and was the original cover image of the text.
This has made me realize that I've always enjoyed the challenge of designing learning interactions that go beyond the simple dissemination of information.
The next image is an "infographic" that was generated by a website that culls information from the various social websites in which I participate. Using infographics in instructional design is a current interest. I always find it fascinating that tomorrow is exponentially more interesting than today. That's how it has always been.
“When I first started my work at Miami Dade College, I was told I would be sharing an office with Dr. Davies until mine would be ready. This was a good turn of events for me, because I got to learn a great deal about the institution, the programs, and many important yet subtle aspects of the position. He had himself established many of the procedures that we were all routinely expected to follow, and if anything unexpected or particularly difficult arose, it was Dr. Davies who was called on to resolve the issues. His amicable style, great competence and vision has earned him the respect and appreciation of both faculty members and co-workers.”
-Martin Rubinstein. former Sr. Instructional Designer at MDC
“Larry began his experience as a typical teacher-volunteer - there for the adventure with little knowledge or experience in the education field. By the end of his time, Larry was committed to learning about sound instruction, to the educational progress of his students, and to the education profession as a whole. That interest and commitment has only grown through the years.”
-Scott Ford, Peace Corps Volunteer Kenya
"Better learning will not come from finding better ways for the teacher to instruct but from giving the learner better opportunities to construct.”
- Seymour Papert
"Look and Feel" "facelift" example
Here is an Earth Science course that I re-rendered. I did a lot of these. The purpose was to have fewer clicks, better organized information, and clearer and LEGAL graphics. The first three images are zooming into a page from a course to the content and how it was arranged before I converted it. The second three images are corresponding updates to the "Look and Feel".
To view a sample update, go to
http://larrydavies.com/moodle/course/view.php?id=27 and login as a guest. The first module is being updated.
Men's Graduate Year Program Centers
Men's Preparation Year Program Centers
Women's Graduate Year Program Centers
I was the Country Director for English Gate Academy in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, supervising 23 sites with 23 Site Directors and over 140 teachers distributed around the Kingdom. Our contract is with the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation, affiliated with the government. It was a huge logistical challenge. Google Drive became a major communication tool to help supervise such a widespread group of educators.
The Kingdom of
2012 - 2014
While in Saudi Arabia, I created the initial concept of my dream curriculum. It consisted of 12 projects that built on each other. Constructed purely of action verbs, it invited students to learn how to be transformational change agents in their lifetime. It was a thrill to support creativity in others through this curriculum.
Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership
Specialty: Human Resource Development
The curriculum and the projects
In Japan, my first big accomplishment was earning my MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. I then started to work at tertiary level, teaching in local universities in the Nagoya area.
Starting in 2015, my current venture has me based out of Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates where I am working at Higher Colleges of Technology training the next generation of Emerati teachers to achieve excellence through teaching with technology.
Larry is a great facilitator. He uses heuristic and holistic techniques in his teaching and training. As a reflective practitioner of language teaching, Larry was able to perform in a plethora of environments where training was needed and he was able to adapt to the teachers needs, which I consider remarkable.
Larry is humanistic and honest. He never listens to the mermaid's chants. He captains the navy to the shore without any problem. He was able to lead the company to a successful academic year.
Roberto Echevierra - Site Director Riyadh
English Gate Academy