Presenters: John Boyer and Katie Pritchard, Virginia Tech University
John Boyer, a.k.a. “The Plaid Avenger,” has grown his world studies class at Virginia Tech University to its current mega-sized class of nearly 3,000. How does Boyer accomplish this seemingly amazing feat? The true answer is that he is more “community manager” than traditional classroom teacher. Everything from assignments to his office hours are managed through social media and other online channels. Every superhero needs a trusty sidekick and Boyer’s is tech guru Katie Pritchard. Boyer and Pritchard have cooked up something amazing at Virginia Tech.
Boyer is the perfect fit for a super-sized class, as he approached his class with unprecedented joy and energy. His class projects are too many to mention, but here are a few:
Boyer interviews students from all over the world to discuss what life is really like in their home countries. He said these interviews provide great real-world experiences for his students.
Students were instructed to imitate a world leader on Twitter. Via Twitter, students were required to update their status three times a day with the real activities of their assigned world leaders. They also had to interact with the other fake leaders from their class on Twitter just as their real world leaders would. See it in action via @Plaid_Obama on Twitter.
Dig In: www.facebook.com/plaidavenger ; @plaidavenger (Twitter handle); www.plaidavenger.com/international-interviews/all/ .