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About Me

Hello, I'm Heidi. I live in Juneau Alaska. I work for the University of Alaska Fairbanks as a Learning Design Coordinator for an eLearning Instructional Design Team. I work with a bunch of creative and really smart people who are very inspirational. I also teach an online class called Desktop Publishing which uses Adobe InDesign as the tool of choice. Most of the class involves creating different design products with some basic graphic design principles threaded throughout the semester.

This site will be the home for my Adobe in Education course reflections. I see no reason to create separate space for the separate classes that I might take.

  • Digital Magazines in the Classroom
  • Graphics and Illustrations for Educators (scroll down)
  • Infographics in the Classroom (keep scrolling downward)
One of my favorite Alaska beaches, the dock at Taku Harbor, and upper UAF campus.

Digital Magazines in the Classroom

Class 1: Travel Brochure

Here's my travel brochure for the first class lesson. I ran out of time to write the copy so it is nice to have filler text option build into InDesign. The project came together easily, none of the skills that were needed were new. I did spend some time going through the tutorials. I have been using a book for my class but I think I might be able to put together enough video tutorials (thank you Adobe) to replace the book. My only concern is that having a printed reference to keep while you are while in InDesign on the computer came be better than going back and forth between different windows. This can be extra tricky if you are working on a laptop and don't have two monitors. Here's my online brochure.

Class 2: Magazine Cover

Here is my Final Project, a magazine cover plus additional articles. This was fun to put together. It made it very clear that working together on separate elements needs to be a coordinated using color libraries, master pages, etc. There wasn't as much control on individual articles since most of us posted PDF files which are harder to edit.

End of course reflection

This was a fun refresher. I learned a few new tricks and was reminded of some features I don't use very often. I'm at that stage where I've been using InDesign for so long and I haven't kept up with a lot of the new features and workflows. My productivity suffers because of that. It is great to spend some time poking around.

Next steps in using this experience in teaching

I will definitely be revisiting the activities and resources I share with students when I teach class next spring. Probably replacing my main text with a series of videos and other resouces.

Think about how your students might learn.

I like the idea of creating templates and having students manipulate agreed upon elements. I also like the publish online feature. I'll be using both more.

Graphics and Illustrations for Educators

Class 1: Creating a badge

I haven't used Illustrator for quite a while so this was a good exercise to reacquaint myself with some of the tools. I have to admit that watching the video demonstration took me and creating the badge took me a lot longer than I expected. I had to pause and rewind quite a few times. This is a good reminder of what some of my online students go through in the InDesign class I teach. I've changed some of my own video demonstrations to limit each video to a single task. This way the student can watch one technique at a time, try to do it on their own, watch again if necessary, and complete one thing before moving on to the next and having to worry about pausing the video too often.

One of the more difficult tasks was to think about what kind of badge I might want to make and what icon would help to explain the objective. I put on my Instructional Designer hat and thought about how my team might use a series of badges for faculty development. I found an icon set that I think will work.

Master of Objectives badge

If I were to duplicate this activity for students, I would definitely prep them with thinking about what kind of a badge to make and how it might fit in a series. With that direction out of the way, the actual application of creating the badge could be the focal point.

Update: I received some feedback that I was able to apply to a revision on the badge. What do you think?

Class 2 - Avatar

blerg - what a struggle

Class 3 - Icons

Illustrator and creating icons really came together for me this week after, the disaster and hopelessness I felt last week in creating an avatar. Video lectures and the live demonstrations helped to reinforce some techniques. I am also more familiar with the tools and panels after working with them for this class so that really helps alot!

I recently finished a book called, "Mozart's Starling" by Lyanda Lynn Haupt. The author brings to life what it might have been like to see the relationship between Mozart and a Starling he adopted and kept as a pet. See NPR article

The Starling in America is an invasive species and looked down upon and even considered not worth protecting by even the most avid birders. One attribute of the Starling is its incredible ability to mimic sounds and being very vocal. The story goes that this Starling that Mozart had was inspiration for many of Mozart's pieces including the seventeenth piano concerto, K453.

Class 4 - Typography

I've done a lot with typography in InDesign so this was an interesting assignment to work with in Illustrator. I found it a little frustrating and would have liked to have spend more time on it just to get the hang out it. I felt a little stuck using the institutional fonts - it might have been more fun to play around more.

Class 5 - Movie Poster

​Rushed for time to get this completed before the deadline. That stress doesn't help with creativity. I found it hard to come up with a movie to portray. I googled movies and looked for shapes that I thought I could draw and came up with this one. I didn't have time to create the eyebrows and hair that I wanted so I imported a vector file and created a clipping path.

End of course reflection

When I think about my own learning, I realized in skills based classes like this that I do best by watching or reading through the material first before opening up the application. Going through the entire process helps me do a mental inventory of what I might already know how to do and what I need to pay more attention to. I think this process has changed as I've gotten older.

Think about how your students might learn.

I already know that my students require multiple ways of learning. Those who can use a step by step guide from a text and those who aren't that patient and require a video tutorial. What I'm not getting students to understand is what the end goals is and how to achieve it. I think because there are so many ways to get to that end goal, and my desire for them to get there using the correct feature or function, isn't quite clear.

Next steps in using this experience in teaching

  • evaluation my individual jobs and give more clarity to the end goal
  • add or find more videos for accomplishing key features or functions
  • consider students creating videos to demonstrate understanding of using key features

Infographics in the Classroom

Class 1

Created By
Heidi Olson


Created with images by Clément M. - "Stay wild."

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