Thursday, March 21, 2013

Data Visualization

Week 8 

 The assignment this week was to watch the following  TED video about graphic images and answer the following questions.

1. What is the speaker’s primary argument concerning the visual representation of data?

When visualizing data information on a chart or pie figure it makes more sense, He explains how information design can help us get through information accumulation on the web and how simple charts can show patterns that we never would have seen otherwise. He describes that he started as a programmer, and then was a writer for about twenty years, but only recently started designing. He learned to put  data together and the skills oh his own. David says that anyone can do it too just by putting things together in a way that we understand better.

2. Give three examples of visual representations of data that were talked about in the video. How did visualization aid the audience in understanding the data?

Several examples were given, the first one was a chart representing the world’s fears, showing  the swan flu, the bird flu, millennium bug and asteroid collision fears. The second chart represented the fears on the violent video games and he talked about the peak times which were November and April every year. The third chart was related to the break up times. Another chart was showing the military budget from different countries. One more chart was related to oil snake showing evidence as a nutritional supplement.

3. The speaker discussed the amount of time that it took him to create a visual data representation of
research about supplements. What does this tell us about the nature of research? How did his time
spent benefit the audience? How does this relate to your research process?

He performed action research, he mentions that he spent one month gathering information from about one thousand articles, he collapsed that information into a visual information and combining “language of the eye with language of the mind”, which is easier to understand by visualization.

4. What graphic representations of data are you going to use in your literature review? Based on the
Information in this video what criteria are you going to use to choose effective images?

I think I’m going to use a graph that shows the number of illegal youth that are eligible to apply now and the number that will be eligible in about 5 years.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

ACTION RESEARCH: Read Article " Action Based Research"


This week we read an article " Action Based Research and answered  the following questions:

A. Use the article “Action Based Research” to answer the following questions

  1. What is the Kairos for this article? Why is this significant?
  2. Name of Article: Learning to do Action Research for Social Change
  3. Publisher: International Journal of Communication; University of Sussex.
  4. Author: Jethro Pettit
  5. When it was published: 2010

2. Define each of the following terms: action research, participatory methods (approaches), reflective
practice, and cooperative inquiry.
Action Research:  “Action research provides an alternative approach to bringing about changes in knowledge, policy, and practice…broadly defined, starts with a very different view of what knowledge is, where it comes from, and how it continues to change…this involves weaving together diverse methodological strands and research traditions, and then combining these with learning about theories and concepts of power, participation and social change”(Pettit, 2010).
Participatory methods (approaches): approaches like for example participatory rural appraisal, participatory learning and action that provide active involvement in decision making, skills of critical reflection.  According to Pettit, “ Finally, there is growing evidence of the ways that action research processes can transform people and institutions – not through linear models of research-policy-practice, but through emergent forms of action-reflection” (Pettit, 2010).
Reflective practice:  “to help learners bridge the words of experience and theory, and to integrate personal reflection with critical analysis of their actions” (Pettit, 2010).  Individuals learn from their own experiences rather than formal teaching. “Students experiment with diverse methods for inquiring into their personal values, senses of purpose and motivation, and the sources and inspirations for these that exist in their lives. They also look self-critically at their own positionality and actions” (Pettit, 2010).
Cooperative Inquiry: the idea is to research with other people not only on people. It gives the example of a student  that formed a cooperative group with other organization “For example, one student formed a cooperative inquiry group with her Brazilian organization in order to explore changes that were taking place in the organization, in their relationships, and in their perceptions of partners outside the organization” (Pettit, 2010).

3. Briefly summarize the author’s argument.
The author talks about a program he created, MA participation, Power and Social change (MAP) it is a program that focuses on action research. Where the students use their own personal experiences to help with the research and learning process. “The a behing this approach to action research is that one’s work environment can be a place of learning, using everyday activities and experiences as a basis for inquiry” (Pettit, 2010)

4. According to the author what is the difference between conventional research and action research?
For what I understand conventional research is for example when we use different documents or studies that have been done research on other projects. Action research in this case means that we need to be actively involved with the research and be part of it including our everyday experiences. According to Pettit, “Traditionally, research has been the province of highly qualified, specialized academics, with the “subjects” of research in a largely passive role. In Action research, these roles change. Knowledge is co-created through a shared process, researchers become actors for change, and practitioners become learners and shapers of meaning” (Pettit, 2010).
Why is this significant? How is this related to our semester theme of citizen journalism?
We learned that a citizen journalist could be anyone who actively participates by giving a story or news about an event that the person witnessed. By reading “Learning to do Action Research for Social Change” we learned also that to do action research we need to actively participate on the research including our own experiences. It is related to or semester topic because they both have the same in common, our active participation, our own experiences need to be involved with our research.
5. What is the Institute of Development Studies? What is the MA in Participation, Power, and Social
Change? How are they related to what the author wants to accomplish with action research? Give three
specific examples of how the author hopes they will help him meet his goal.
The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) is “a research, teaching, and consulting institute focused on interdisciplinary, collaborative approaches to issues of global poverty and inequality” (Pettit, 2010).
The MA in Participation, Power and Social Change (MAP) is “ an 18-month program in three parts which makes action research central to the learning process” (Pettit,2010).
As far as the examples, Pettit mentioned “ If we are to teach, and to facilitate learning, effectively, inclusively, and democratically, then we need to internalize and apply action research approaches as a collective vehicle to bring about personal transformation and social change within ourselves, as much as we do with others” (Pettit, 2010).
  1. What does it mean to “co-create and mobilize knowledge for change?”
Co-create in this case meaning that by including our own experiences, we become actors and that way we can develop and come up with new ideas for a change. “Knowledge is co-created through a shared process, researchers become actors for change, and practitioners become learners and shapers of meaning” (Pettit, 2010).

7. Give examples of how action research could be incorporated into your semester topic and your
literature review.
Action research to be incorporated into my semester topic means that I would need to actively participate on the research and provide my own experiences. In this case my semester topic is Immigration reform, so I think I would need to talk or write about my personal experience about immigration, how immigration reform has affected or helped me and the point of view that I have about it. 

Separating Fact from Fiction


This week we watched a  TED video "Markham Nolan: How to separate fact and fiction online" then we needed to answer the following questions:

1. What is the primary argument made in this video? What are some specific examples from the video of
journalists engaging in this activity? What are their methods? What Internet tools do they use?
The primary argument is regarding in how and where we get information and that we need to make sure is a credible source.  
One of the specific examples was an earth wake that happened in Costa Rica  where by one person posting something on twitter and in less than 60 sec people around the world could know about because the information travels fast. He was talking about the most of the information we can find for free almost immediately after something happen.
In the example from Costa Rica he mentioned that the person used twitter. Also he was talking about people posting so many pictures into Facebook.

2. As a researcher why is it important track down the original source, as well as, to document the all the
sources that you are using? According to the video what are some of the consequences of not doing so?
It is important to track down the original source because people post pictures and sometimes is overwhelming that we don’t know if it is credible or not.  He mentioned that computers don’t replace humans, for what I understand   is that now days with computers we can do so many things even Photoshop and we can create pics that appear to be real and that is why when searching the web web for our research we have to be very careful and know what to look for to make sure we don’t end up with websites or pictures created with the aid of computers to pretend there are real and keep on looking until find a credible source.

3. What are the roles of human sources/human interaction in collecting and publishing credible
information? How can Internet tools and human sources be used together for this purpose? Why is it
important to use both?

As humans, We need to investigate further and check for sources and credentials to make sure that what we are seen is not a makeup picture or video. If we are doing a research we want to make sure we have a valid statement by having a credible source. He focuses on searching for the truth. He showed videos and talked about the different steps he took to find out if the videos were real or not. In this case one of the videos where it was raining and the person taking the photo was shocked, he did a research and find out that it was real.  He used the interned to search from the user name on twitter, to look for the weather in the area where he concludes the video was taken from, he used the phone book to look for the address and finally looked at aerial pictures to compare the indicated house with the one on the video and finally he concluded that the video posted was real.
The second video he showed was about several men throwing an injured man into a river and talked about the steps he took to perform the investigation to find out if the video was real or not.

4. We are working through the literature review unit where you will locate multiple sources (primarily
scholarly sources) on your topic. How will the tools and methods presented in this video help you to
discern the credibility and relevance of sources? How do you plan to use both Internet tools and human
sources to collect the most credible sources on your semester topic?
The video was very helpful and a eye opener for me. I learned that while doing the reseach on my topic and find an article or video I would need to keep on researching that specific article or video for its credentials and make sure is not just a commentary of the journal  or a video made by a human and adding pictures or information that appears to be credible but is not.  I already have  with me and submitted the journals that I plan to use and now I will go back and research  where this journals came from and also a video that I used  about president Obama, I will research more to find out exactly who posted and see where this research take me to.