Dangerous bug in Moodle

Just discovered a dangerous bug in the Moodle essay question template.

About the essay question edit screen

When you write an essay question in Moodle, there are a couple of different boxes on the form:

The question goes in the top. Then you have the “General response” (something the student usually can see when the results are released). Then the “Response Template,” which can be used for including text you want to appear in the answer box as soon as the question loads for the student (e.g. text like “Type your essay here”). And finally a grader box, where you can include tips for the grader (this shows up on the grading screen right above the student’s answer. Read the rest of this entry »


University of Lethbridge Tenure Track job: Postcolonial or Modernism, DH welcome (Deadline April 15)

The Department of English at the University of Lethbridge invites applications for a probationary (tenure-track) position at the Assistant Professor rank to begin 1 July 2014, subject to budgetary approval. The position is in the area of Twentieth-Century Literature with specialization in either Post-Colonial Literature or Modernism.

Applicants should have a Ph.D. at or near completion and teaching experience at the university level. The University aspires to hire individuals who have demonstrated considerable potential for excellence in teaching, research and scholarship. New faculty members are eligible to apply for university funding in support of research and scholarly activities.

The position is open to all qualified applicants, although preference will be given to Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada. Read the rest of this entry »


Academic Suicide

The so-called “college paper” has been a debated topic practically since its initial inception. A recent class statement brought the debate to the forefront of my mind. Professor O’Donnell stated, in a tone of bemusement, that his students tend to perform better on the blog assignments than on their actual papers. It does seem odd that a discrepancy exists between two writing exercises. However, the answer formed almost immediately within my thoughts and has expanded through the discussion of prescriptive rules versus descriptive. The reason students are so terrible at writing the “college paper” boils down to differences between prescriptive rules and descriptive rules. With that I commit myself to academic suicide by breaking the general guidelines and prescriptive rules of academic writing and adhering only to grammatical prescriptive rules and a more formal dialect to explain the phenomenon of why students are incapable of writing the traditional North American college Read the rest of this entry »


GO::DH Election results (2014 Executive)

This past week, Global Outlook::Digital Humanities held the election for its first elected executive (the founding executive was self-appointed). Interest in the election was very strong. There were twenty candidates…

GO::DH Election results (2014 Executive)

This past week, Global Outlook::Digital Humanities held the election for its first elected executive (the founding executive was self-appointed). Interest in the election was very strong. There were twenty candidates…

Research prospectus

A prospectus is a researched proposal for a research project. It explains the proposed focus of the paper (i.e. the works or topics that will be covered), the bibliographical context (i.e. important research works that touch on this topic and will useful in writing the paper), the broad outline of the argument that is going to be made and the evidence that is going to be used.

Think of it as a somewhat detailed explanation as to what you are going to write about and why you find it interesting.

A prospectus does not need to be long. Read the rest of this entry »


The Lethbridge Journal Incubator: A new business model for Open Access journal publication (Elsevier Labs Online Lectures February 18, 2014)

The Lethbridge Journal Incubator: A new business model for Open Access journal publication by Daniel Paul O’Donnell with contributions from Gillian Ayers, Kelaine Devine, Heather Hobma, Jessica Ruzack, Sandra Cowen, Leona Jacobs, Wendy Merkeley, Rhys Stevens, Marinus Swanepoel, and Maxine Tedesco. Elsevier Labs Online Lectures February 18, 2014.

The Lethbridge Journal Incubator: A new business model for Open Access journal publication by Daniel O'Donnell with contributions from Gillian Ayers, Kelaine Devine, Heather Hobma, Jessica Ruzack, Sandra Cowen, Leona Jacobs, Wendy Merkeley, Rhys Stevens, Marinus Swanepoel, and Maxine Tedesco.

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Living out loud: The Visionary Cross Project and the Public Humanities (CMRS/ETRUS. University of Saskatchewan January 16, 2014)

Just posted our talk on Living out loud: The Visionary Cross Project and the Public Humanities to slideshare.

Living out loud: The Visionary Cross Project and the Public Humanities from Heather Hobma, Daniel O'Donnell, Marco Callieri, Matteo Dellepiane, James Graham, Catherine Karkov, Roberto Rosselli Del Turco.

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How to do a table of contents in text pattern

My teaching pages are served out using Textpattern, a relatively light CMS that uses textile wiki-like markup.

Because adding an excerpt by hand wrecks the syndication of this site through Wordpress to my other blog, I don’t usually add a text summary. Instead, I do something similar to the Wikipedia or Wordpress: I begin articles with an abstract like first paragraph, then include a table of contents, then have the rest of the body.

I used to make up these tables of content by hand, cursing all the time that Textile wasn’t XML. Then I discovered soo_toc, a Textpattern plugin that builds tables of contents dynamically. Joy!

Of course, now I need to remember to add the template that calls the TOC to each page (as I type this, I wonder if there might not be a simple variable I could develop that does this, but that’s for later). Read the rest of this entry »


Mounting University of Lethbridge “P” and “W” drives under Linux

Here’s how to find the “P” and “W” drives at the University of Lethbridge.

“P” drives

Your “P” drive is the windows share that represents your standard network desktop (i.e. the thing you see if you log into a classroom or other computer on campus).

Read the rest of this entry »

Mounting University of Lethbridge “P” and “W” drives under Linux

Here’s how to find the “P” and “W” drives at the University of Lethbridge.

“P” drives

Your “P” drive is the windows share that represents your standard network desktop (i.e. the thing you see if you log into a classroom or other computer on campus).

The address is ulhome.uleth.ca/$USER where $USER is your account username (the same as the lefthand side of your uleth email account, or, in my case, daniel.odonnell. Read the rest of this entry »


Living out loud: The Visionary Cross Project and the Public Humanities

A new presentation by Heather Hobma, Daniel Paul O’Donnell, Marco Callieri, Matteo Dellepiane, James Graham, Catherine Karkov, Roberto Rosselli Del Turco. Living out loud: The Visionary Cross Project and the Public Humanities from Daniel O’Donnell

Revisiting Old Irish: The sounds

The first tough bit of Old Irish is the spelling system and phonology.

There are two issues here, for the native speaker of English

  1. Old Irish uses phonemic contrasts that we don’t (particularly palatalisation)
  2. The Old Irish spelling system doesn’t reflect its phonology in a couple of important places.

Spelling

Old Irish uses 17 or 18 letters (five vowels and 11 or 12 consonants, depending on how you count <h>): <a>, <b>, <c>, <d>, <e>, <f>, <g>, <h>, <i>, <l>, <m>, <n>, <o>, <p>, <r>, <s>, <t>, <u>.

The “additional” letters in Modern English (i.e. Read the rest of this entry »


Revisiting Old Irish: A new blog series

It’s been twenty odd years since I last studied Old Irish. So when a former student of mine, James Bell, came and asked if I’d work with him on Old Irish, Old Norse, Gothic, or something else old, I thought it sounded like a fun idea.

For our textbook, we’re using An Old Irish Primer by Wim Tigges in collaboration with Feargal Ó Béarra. But unlike 20 years ago, there are also lots of resources around on the Internet.

I’m going to use this blog series as a kind of notebook/reportage about what we are up to. Since this is a case of the blind leading the blind, corrections and suggestions are very much appreciated.

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Read the rest of this entry »

Class 2.0: Digital technology & digital rhetorics in the undergraduate classroom.

I just posted the slides for my lecture to the Department yesterday: Class 2.0: Digital technology & digital rhetorics in the undergraduate classroom.

Abstract: This lecture discusses some preliminary results from an ongoing research project on the use of digital technology and digital rhetorics in the undergraduate classroom. The goal of the project is to explore how these technologies and rhetorics can address common problems in the literature classroom: weak composition skills, lack of engagement, poor preparation. Initial, at this point still largely anecdotal, results suggest that the committed integration Web 2.0 technologies and rhetorics in the classroom can greatly improve outcomes in this area.

The lecture discusses how these techniques are used and some of the results we have seen.

Read the rest of this entry »

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