EdTech 513 – Audacity Audio Recording

Audacity Audio Recording

I’ve attended workshops about Audacity use in the classroom, however, this is the first instance where I’m using it myself.  I found this free tool for the creation of audio files very user friendly.  To make my sound recording I use Chester Creek USB headphones with a build in Mic.  I found the sound quality to be very clear.  As a result of the ease of this experience I can see using Audacity more often in the future to create sound files, podcasts, and narrations in the future.


EdTech 513 – Presentation – Digital Footprint

My presentation covers an introduction on the topic of Digital Footprint.  Students will see limited text and carefully selected images to represent concepts when possible.  In one instance students use a Google Form to actually generate an image that will then be interpreted through class discussion of our own digital footprints.

This project demonstrates multimedia and contiguity principles by:

  • carefully selecting images that align with the text on the page
  • being aware of whitespace in the presentation
  • having textual information minimized on each slide
  • incorporating video when appropriate that has been carefully selected in aligned with  chunk that is digestible given to attention span of the learner
  • there is a balance between text, video, and visual presentation of the media
  • by using visuals with words instead of words alone

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Digital Footprint is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://wp.me/p29Uop-b3.

EDTECH 513 – Week 4 Multimedia & Contiguity Principles


How can we use cutting edge technology in training?

Cutting edge technology can aid in simulating real life situations.  For example, the use of virtual worlds in creating a simulated mass tragedy or response a community can be a valuable learning experience.  Leveraging technology can also allow for learning to occur both synchronously and asynchronously making those with time restrains still able to access content and training at a time that works.


How can we leverage younger students that have grown up using technology?

These younger students have primarily grown up using technology for entertainment.  So the have basic skills to turn on a device and can locate information for a game they enjoy.  However, they still need the skills to use technology for learning and productivity.  Leveraging technology with younger students can better equip teachers to differentiate instruction, create learning experiences that transcend the brick and mortar classroom, and extend learning beyond the confines of the school day.


What are the best technologies for e-learning?

There is not a one size fits all technology for all experiences.  It varies depending upon grade level and content being taught as well as student comfort with technology in the e-learning environment.  Currently, I am using Google Classroom to create a blended e-learning experience for my 3rd-5th grade students.  It is not perfect by any means but it does allow me to push out assignments, promote, discussion, link to Google Apps for education and other cloud based learning experiences to organize my class in a way that students are progressing through the curriculum in which I teach.


How can we adapt technology to aid human learning?

Leveraging the power of technology we can use add extensions to our web browser that will convert text to speech.  Using the SpeakIt extension students that are struggling readers or non-readers can access writing directions using the digital tool.  This levels the playing field for students with different reading abilities.


Visual learners learn best through seeing a demonstration.  In a brick and mortar setting this can be done using document cameras and projectors so that everyone can see what is being modeled by the classroom teacher.  In a digital learning environment, such as an online course, the same effect can be achieved through screencasting using a tool such as Screencast-O-Matic.  The nice feature of creating screencasts from both brick and mortar schools as well as digital is that students that need more time to process information can pause, replay, and review the instruction until they can complete the task.  This is also a way to provide a preview of a lesson for students that have anxiety giving them the confidence to know what is coming and feeling more comfortable with the content.  Technology also allows those students with poor written expression to dictate their responses to a computer or other mobile device and translate that into text.


Another way to adapt technology to aid student learning would be to continue to expand the educational video game market to align with educational content standards in a meaningful way to create change.  Jane McGonigal in her book “Reality Is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How Games Can Change the World” explores this topic extensively.  Games create a wonderful learner experience.  Games provide their players with continuous feedback, self paced progression, visual, auditory, and textual stimuli and the opportunity to change schema and learn from mistakes making greater progress.  Games adapt their challenge level based upon the player’s current level of success.  Harnessing this game theory as discussed by experts such as Jim Gee, Jane McGonigal, Dr. Chris Haskell and Will Wright can greatly increase student motivation, learning, and investment in the educational process.


After reading Chapter 2 & 3 of “E-Learning and the Science of Instruction?,” I believe that a multifaceted approach to learning makes the most sense.  True learning occurs when there are motivated learners that are experiencing, discussing, collaborating, and creating new schemas and connections to existing knowledge in order to create new meaning.  Because people learn best in different ways we need to be cognizant about overloading the learner with just one type of presentation, creation, or demonstration of their learning.  As educators we need to balance textual content with pictorial representation in the form of images, audio, and video without over stimulating.


The concept of less is more is important when creating a PowerPoint presentation or Google Slide presentation.  According to the Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning presented by Clark and Mayer there are three important cognitive processes to pay attention to when creating multimedia presentations.

    • “Selecting words and images – the first step is to pay attention to relevant words and images in the presented material;
    • Organizing words and images – the second step is to mentally organize the selected material in coherent verbal and pictorial representations; and
  • Integrating – the final step is to integrate incoming verbal and pictorial representations with each other and with existing knowledge” (Clark & Mayer, 2008, p. 37).


After synthesizing the information in the reading along with prior cognitive knowledge I would be more cognizant of the following things in my future practice when creating multimedia course material:

  • the amount of white space in a multimedia presentation
  • carefully selected pictorial representations
  • having textual information minimized per each PowerPoint or Google slide
  • incorporating audio or video when appropriate but making sure that the length is chunked into digestible bites give the attention span of the learner
  • creating a balance between text, video, audio, and visual presentation of media
  • ensuring that the digital tools selected align with the the “kinds of learners, instructional objectives, and learning environments” (Clark & Mayer, 2008, p. 52).
  • having graphics and text in close proximity to each other in presentation material
  • “use visuals with words instead of words alone” (Atkinson & Mayer, 2004).

Atkinson, C., & Mayer, R. (2004, April 4). Five ways to reduce PowerPoint overload. Retrieved January 16, 2015, from https://presentations4librarians.files.wordpress.com/2009/04/atkinson_mayer_powerpoint_4_23_04.pdf


Blowing up the Gradebook – Using Video Games for Learning: Chris Haskell at TEDxAmmon. (n.d.). Retrieved January 16, 2015, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0zeipr-cVc


Clark, R., & Mayer, R. (2003). E-Learning and the science of instruction: Proven guidelines for consumers and designers of multimedia learning (pp. 29-64). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer.


Games and Education Scholar James Paul Gee on Video Games, Learning, and Literacy. (n.d.). Retrieved January 16, 2015, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNfPdaKYOPI


Jane McGonigal: The game that can give you 10 extra years of life. (n.d.). Retrieved January 16, 2015, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfBpsV1Hwqs


McGonigal, J. (2011). Reality is Broken: Why Games Make us Better and How They Can Change the World. New York: Penguin Press.


Will Wright: Spore, Birth of a Game. (n.d.). Retrieved January 16, 2015, from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3NA-aKpgFk&feature=youtu.be

Creative Commons License
EDTECH 513 – Week 4 Multimedia & Contiguity Principles by Joanna Marcotte is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at https://joannamarcotteedtechlearninglog.wordpress.com/2015/01/16/edtech-513-week-4-multimedia-contiguity-principles/.