Reflection Essay Paper

COPLAC -Spring 2019

April 27, 2019

In retrospect of what I learned in this class, I feel good about process of blogging, and have to admit that blogging is more effective than writing down notes that are usually not viewed by others.  Also I realized how paper orientated I am opposed to digital, and how to better recognize and explain conflict/resolution situations. The experience of creating a website and using digital technology was overwhelming for me, and as expected my digital knowledge and skills have greatly improved as a result of taking this class.   I enjoyed our class discussions involving on sociology, psychology, current and historical conflict/resolution situations.

Wow!!  As identified in the syllabus this class taught me digital skills that I actually needed.  Now I can talk the talk, and anxious to learn more about WordPress, Google Chrome, using other tools and online resources such as Google My Maps, Bibly and Noodle.   Fair Use is ingrained in my memory considering all of the great images I wanted to use, but had to remove because I did not have permission to use them. I also learned how to use the internet and visit sites that offered free images.   At this point, with the help of our tech support I think WordPress is relatively easy to login to select a theme, creating pages, uploading to the photogallery, and posting images, but there is still more for me to learn, and it can be confusing at times just like any other application.   One feature I need to work continue working on in WordPress is using and/or understanding how to use format functions within a selected site theme. Overall, I just need more practice and plan to continue to practice using WordPress.

Thinking back to when the class first started …I wanted to save the world, I was ready to start a peace movement, and get a group of folks together in my community to resolve a local conflict.   Dr. Welch told me that he would not stop me in trying to save the world…LOL. However, he knew I would need more than one semester to do that! He then proceeded to simply discuss the course timeline and objectives and that quickly narrowed down my focus!  Dr. Wallace was right there to provide her input, and provide additional details about the course. Throughout the entire course the timely, discerning, comprehensive and thorough feedback, knowledge and perspectives of Professors Welch and Wallace was invaluable.   Also having the support of the technical staff was tremendously appreciated, from the weekly audio checks to always having support from access to COPLACDigital Program Associate, Leah Taams even before the class started.

I truly feel like after working with both professors, interacting with classmates and learning about their projects,  reading the course materials, reviewing COPLAC student projects from prior semesters, participating in class discussions and completing my site project that I have a heightened sense of awareness of conflict and resolution and overall societal awareness.   I recall both professors sharing examples of their own conflict resolution research projects and finding that to be totally inspiring.

Initially, I thought this class would be easy, but having to do so much research, and thinking about the design of my site, and where info should be placed.  The logistics of it all was mind boggling for me. Now I think I realize how web designers might feel sometimes when working site projects oppose to just being a contributor to a site.    

This semester was challenging academically and on a personal level. Unexpectedly, two of my friends passed away, and I decided to resigned from a full-time job to spend more time with my 86 year-old mother.  It is important to me that my Mom stay as alert and active as possible at her age. Within the next few weeks Mom and I are scheduled to do some of her favorite things, i.e., attend water aerobics, gardening, spending time on a houseboat and fish for Bass and Catfish all day, and visit friends.  

Overall, I enjoyed the format of the course, most of all the distance learning aspect was great since I live 90 miles from the University.   Participation in this course has been a rewarding experience for me. Thanks Everyone! Peace, Love & Happiness Always. ~jj

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