Monday, December 22, 2014

Thanks for a great semester, and have a great new year

Folks, this will very likely be the last time I teach LIS 201 for quite awhile.  This was an unusual and experimental course that I developed just around the time that I earned tenure here at UW, and frankly I didn't know if students would find it either interesting or useful.  Seven years and over 1,000 students later, I think I have my answer.  It has been a great highlight of my career to watch each class of new participants encounter this material from their own ever-changing historical perspectives.  (This class is about as old as Twitter is, for example.)

Going forward, you're all going to continue to build the "information society" yourselves with every economic, democratic, community, and career choice you make over the course of your lives.  I hope our brief time together has helped you to better understand the impact of those choices, and inspired  you to similarly help to empower others to more fully participate in shaping our networked world of ideas.

All the best, GREG

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

This week (and next week) in LIS 201

Week 15: Student presentations


  • Each TA will submit one student presentation for screening before the whole course. You may bring snacks if you like.
  • Last fifteen minutes: Fill out overall course evaluation (professor leaves room).


  • Work on your multimedia book review and bring your questions to section.
  • If problems with your slide show were discovered when screened by your TA, fix them and repost.   You must have a working slide show to receive credit for the assignment.


  • Workshop for the final analytic, multimedia book review.
  • Last ten minutes: Fill out discussion section evaluations (TA leaves room).
  • Graded exam #2 handed back to students.

Final Exam Week

There is no final exam for this course.
Your multimedia book review is due on the last weekday of finals week: Friday, December 19, by 5pm. Post the link to your book review blog to your discussion section wiki (and you may want to email it to your TA as well, just to make sure). Make it serious, and make it look good. No late book reviews will be accepted.

Have a good winter break!

Monday, December 1, 2014

This week in LIS 201




  • None.  (Not yet, anyway.)


  • Begin work on your multimedia book review.


  • Continue to screen the remainder of the slideshow presentations and discuss them.
  • Discuss strategies for multimedia book review project.
  • Graded paper #2 handed back to students.


For your last online activity, you will reflect on your own online experience in this course.
  • The "hybrid" or "blended" course approach of LIS 201 -- combining in-person lecture, in-person discussion section, and online activity and writing -- is an increasingly popular mode of educational delivery in higher education. Do a web search and see if you can find a few other examples of hybrid/blended courses, either at UW-Madison or at other universities. How do these examples differ from our approach in LIS 201?
  • Think about your own experience with this course. For example: Did the online portions connect with the in-person portions? Did you feel that you were a more effective student in the physical world or the virtual world? Were you able to learn more about your fellow students from online or offline (face-to-face) interactions? Do you feel more comfortable now with online resources like blogs and wikis than you did before taking this course? Should UW instructors increase their use of online components in courses, or should we proceed with greater caution?
  • Finally, think about the substantive material from the lectures and readings on the information society that you've worked with all semester long. Did the course lectures and readings bring a better perspective to your own online experiences, both in this course and in your personal life? Or another way of thinking about it: would online course components work differently in a course that wasn't all about the online world of information?
  • Write up your findings and your reactions on your discussion section weblog. Be honest, it's OK.
  • Comment on at least one other student's posting.
  • You must finish this online activity before next week's lecture.