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Expectations of yourself matter!!!
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
A week or 2 ago, Vera Chen, whom I am mentoring in Beijing noted that life is undesignable though we think we are designing our lives. She also noted that one needs to walk through life and make decisions--good or bad--and get to know life better. She asked me if I believed that when people lower their expectations on life, they are more happy. I replied with the following:

"I think we lower and raise our expectations of life each day. When successful we raise them. When we meet famous people, we raise them. When we think about unique opportunities, we raise them. When we get positive feedback or recognition, we raise them. And there are more times when we lower them."

While expecations others have of you are key to your growth in life, perhaps even more important is your internal system of expectations, your volition, your passion, and your goals. Do not let others steal that away from you. As Bandura said, it is self-efficacy and self-confidence that matter. Expectations of yourself really determine your potential. So, the higher the role models available the better. That is why people in academia want to work with smart people. That is why some search for think tanks to work in. That is why exclusive conferences or institutes are things that people glow about. That is why high schools and universities are selective. It is hard to have the highest goals and expectations without the guideposts and the models in one's life. We all need that. Now that I have full professor status, I can try to be a little light for some graduate students who want to move into academia or corporate world.

I also told Vera to have a vision or reflection of where she wants to do. She is in educational technology but seeks interdisciplinary activities. I told her to write a major reflection or blog post and to revisit it in 6 months, 12 months, 2 years, 3 years, 5 years, 10 years, etc. I thought that it each time she might change it and reshape it each time or expand on it in totally different ways. She is at the start of a master's at Peking University. She, like most graduate students (and many faculty members or instructors) need to ask themselves life questions in order to begin to vision where they want to be and to create some goals and visions. With the world in fast change in education and technology fields, we alll have many opportunities in front of us right now and some ending goals will help you sort out some of things to attend to.

What do you think?
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  posted by Curt Bonk @ 9:40 AM   8 comments
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What is the Internet? A request from a friend in the UK.
Someone from Napier University in Scotland asked me to define the Internet today in 100 words. I did it in 140 words. This is part of what he said:

"I’m midway through writing an eLearning awareness course for support folk here in Napier University. One of our themes is a deliberately shortened version of something complex – and we’re calling it “in 100 words”. For example, I’ve asked a number of industry people to describe ‘in 100 words’, what eLearning is, or what cable tv is. In the latter case I’ve had someone go on for over 2000 words – must have too many channels! J

Anyway, I’m wondering whether you have the time to give me 100 words on – wait for it – “what the internet is”. A challenge or pretty easy? If you have the time etc I’d appreciate it, and of course with your say so, would plant it on the site itself with your reference etc.

Let me know whether you wish to rise to the challenge!"

Laurence Patterson


Here it is (delete last 3 sentences to get to 100).

The internet is a place of adventure; where reporters, scientists, and explorers can take you to Mount Everest, the North Pole, and the Mayan ruins during their travels and experiments. A place for finding friends, both new and old. A place for reading about people you would never have encountered before. A place for learning new information and gathering it together in an index and later using that index for one’s reflective writing, school research, market analysis, document creation, and course development. The internet is a place for one to become a consumer and a vendor. A place for offering products no one else has thought of and for acquiring personal items that you might have never been able to access before. It is a place to learn and to teach, to grow and to support others in their growth.

What do you think?

I am all ears today.

By the way, what do you think of my new blog?
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  posted by Curt Bonk @ 9:21 AM   4 comments
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About Me

Name: Curt Bonk
Home: Bloomington, Indiana, United States
About Me: I am a former accountant and CPA and a former educational psychologist. I am now Professor of IST at Indiana University and also adjunct in the School of Informatics. I founded and later sold SurveyShare. As president of CourseShare, LLC, I run around the world training instructors to teach online and give motivational talks about emerging learning technologies. I also write and edit books related to e-learning and blended learning. See bio and vita.

See my complete profile

Click here for information about my recent book, The World is Open: How Web Technology Is Revolutionizing Education.

Visit the Indiana University Home Page of E-Learning Expert Curtis J. Bonk.

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