Monthly Check-ins

Hello all,

Here’s an update from @mooredm @elliottengelj and @cvengrin and the Teaching in the University project for our fellow @oct19-cohort members in Rebus.

We’ve received Table of Contents/Abstract comments from four of six external peer reviewers. Comments were largely positive and had some helpful bits. We told external reviewers about the purpose of the book and asked them to review the chapter titles/abstracts and asked if they had comments on topics that we missed. (Students (many of whom are the authors) in the Graduate Teaching Scholars program were previously invited to review the TOC and provide feedback.) External reviewer comments were helpful and indicated that we are headed in a good direction. We have some questions about the title of the book so we’ll need to further work on that.

This week we had two optional meetings with chapter authors in which we discussed writing-related questions (tone, features to include in each chapter, author agreement, and how we want to communicate as a group.)

The editorial team met today. We reviewed our overall editorial calendar, parts of which we let slide because of the Covid-19 pandemic. We set and will shortly announce author meeting dates for April & May. We hope to complete and share the author guidelines with authors next week.

Chapter authors have been asked to join the Rebus community. We would like to provide an overview of the platform (how to get started, how to best leverage the value of the platform as a communication and transparency tool, basic features, etc.) We have around 20 authors, some of whom will not able able to attend a live demo/ author meetings. We would love to invite you, @apurva or @zoe but we know that your time is also limited so we are wondering if there is a brief video or other introduction to using the Rebus community platform which we could share with authors. Does one exist? If not, is there a brief handout or “how to use this site best” page or guide available?

We are looking forward to checking in on April 17th. On a personal note: We are all well so far. Like everyone else all of our teaching and other work has been severely disrupted with moving everything online and closing everything else due to COVID-19, but we are well and very grateful for many things.

We look forward to hearing from the rest of the cohort as time allows.

Wow you are inspiring me…Great news.



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Joan is right − this is an inspiring update!

I’m happy to hear that reviews have been largely favourable and helpful. It’s good that you were able to do a formal round of peer reviews after the internal feedback from the team during the earlier phases. I’m curious about what kind of title you land up with as you take into account the review comments.

It’s not surprising that timelines and deadlines have needed to be moved around. This is definitely acceptable and encouraged! I’m glad that your team is being understanding towards one another and working together to find ways to slowly gain momentum back on the project.

Your team seems set up well for the content creation work this month and next. I’m excited to see the authors join the platform! I would recommend sharing these two threads with anyone new to the platform:

If you’re planning on doing a demo of the platform, I would suggest taking a look at a video tour we had prepared for the platform. While we’ve made updates to the platform since the video was shot, it still contains useful information that you could mention during your own demo! I would particularly highlight the different blocks of your project homepage as ways to leverage transparency and public work, and possibly even look at other examples to inform authors why it is so important to communicate in the open. Here’s a recap of our marketing & communications session that talks a bit about the benefits of this open approach.

If there are any questions about the platform or community, we’re more than happy to answer them here. So even if we cannot attend your author meetings, we’re certainly able to keep an eye on updates or questions in your project discussion space and jump in when necessary.

I also look forward to chatting with you all next week. I’m glad you are all doing well (as I hope is the rest of the cohort). I’m sorry to hear that your work has been severely disrupted with the shift to online, but I hope that solutions are in place and that it is more manageable now.

@oct19-cohort I hope you are all keeping well! Our next check-in is this Friday, April 17, at 1pm ET on Zoom (at our standard meeting link). It’s been a bit longer than 4 weeks since our last call, so I’m looking forward to chatting with you all again and seeing how things are with everybody. :slight_smile: I know that some of you won’t be able to make this session — we’ll try to get an update from your other representatives on the call, or connect with you here in the discussion afterwards.

I’ll write back here with a few updates after our call. See you soon!

Hi Apurva! I’m so sorry I missed today’s meeting. Time is playing tricks on me lately. I hope you will share what you discussed together and I look forward to our next meeting!

Have a great weekend!

Thank you @oct19-cohort for coming to today’s check-in and sharing a bit about how you are doing, how your projects are progressing. It was nice to see so many of you after over a month. If any of you were not able to make this session, please reply to this thread and let us know how you are doing and share project updates (if you have any).

As I noted on the call, going forward, we are going to be taking some extra security measures with Zoom. So we will continue to use the same link, but will password-protect it. You will all have received a DM in the platform with the password. Please feel free to pass that along to anyone else on your project team who might not be in the platform.

As usual, I’ve saved the chat transcript from our conversation for you all to refer to. Below is a round-up of links shared:

We also saw a preview of the cover for the Open Pedagogy project, designed by Allison:

Samantha @dannick also had a question for others on the call: does anyone have suggestions for ways that language instructors can engage their students and focus on conversation practice? I’ll suggest taking a look at how Português para Principiantes uses H5P interactive elements to assess students throughout the book. If anyone has other suggestions, please share them below!

Our next check-in will be on May 8, and I’ll be sure to send out a reminder before.

@oct19-cohort, it’s been nearly a month since we last met up, which means that our next check-in is round the corner. We’ll be meeting up this Friday, May 8, at 1pm ET at our usual Zoom link.

If you can’t make the session, please let us know by responding below. Take a moment to also share how you’ve been doing so far, and of course, anything that you want to mention about your project!

Hey Apurva! Looking forward to this week’s check-in. We are in the editing phase of our project at the moment and would love the opportunity to discuss. Thanks and talk soon!

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That’s great! I know you were managing a few stages of writing and editing concurrently, so I look forward to hearing how it’s going. Chat soon! :slight_smile:

Thank you @apurva, I won’t be able to make it today. I haven’t heard from @walcir.cardoso but hopefully he can join today.

On other notes, I have been reading up on Latex and accessible PDF, and making a tagged PDF so it can be read by screen readers, like @arwalz was talking about for her wonderful example Electromagnetics, Volume 2. This is all very new to me!

Thanks for letting us know, Chloe. Hopefully we can see you at our session next month! And of course, we’re happy to hear from Walcir, @Mike or @am.senecal if they can make it.

It’s nice to hear that you’ve been diving into more on Latex and tagging PDFs! There’s a lot to dig into there, so please feel free to share anything useful and interesting (or confusing) you find as you’re learning more about both concepts. :smiley: We’re all ears!

Hi Apurva and all,

Thank you for the reminder. Donna and I will unfortunately not be able to attend today. We are both fine but haven’t checked in for a couple weeks and are working on end of semester /end of year wrap up.

Authors are in a writing phase which is relatively quiet. I’ll plan to send a more detailed update after our next check in.

Hope you all are well!

No worries Anita; it seems that many in the cohort are busy finishing up their semesters. I hope you both get some time to yourselves before the next one begins!

I look forward to the next update.

All is well on my end. :slight_smile: I’ll follow-up with a recap of our session today soon!

@oct19-cohort thanks to those of you who could make it to our check-in last week! We were a small group, but got a chance to dive deep into project updates and questions (on encouraging editors, allocating funding, plagiarism, Rebus tools, informing others about open publishing). If you couldn’t join us, let us know how you’re doing and share any project details in this thread. We know that the past few months may have been slow for many of you and your projects, and that’s okay — you will all regain momentum in due course!

The check-ins are providing an opportunity for us to revisit old or discuss new challenges that you might be facing on your projects. If there’s anything that seems of interest for you, please let me know, and I can prepare a short session on these topics (perhaps even polling to see which to tackle sooner). This idea seemed to resonate with those on the call, and I’m curious to hear what everyone else thinks.
Please let me know!

There were a few resources shared in our chat transcript, which I’ll list out:

And for anyone who is looking for new things to bake, this cookie recipe suggested by @alazear!

Our next session is on June 5th, but I’ll be in touch sooner to touch base on any potential topics we can discuss during the session. Let me know if you have any suggestions. :slight_smile:

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Hi Apurva,

I was ready to join on Friday and found an old invite with the meeting details. However, as I tried to get in, I was asked for a password and I had no recollection of getting that through past e-mails.

Sorry to have missed the meeting.

We are moving along with copyediting for the chapters in Open Pedagogy Approaches. There are two chapters yet to be claimed although one of them is still waiting for me and Alexis to suggest some major edits. We currently have 5 chapters being copyedited, which leaves 15 that are now waiting for final review by me/Alexis and then an author sign off. Our draft introduction should be ready for a few reviews by the end of this weekend. It’s funny how we keep kicking that can down the road.

Not sure about Alexis but my energy is draining toward empty very quickly after this semester. But June 30 is on the near horizon and I think we can push through. If we need to delay the final release, I imagine everyone involved will understand.


Make that 4 chapters currently being worked on and 16 that Alexis and I can perform a final review on! :slight_smile:


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Hi Kim, I’ve resent the password information to you now via Direct Message and will resend this to the cohort next month at the same time as the meeting reminder, so it’s easier for everyone to find.

Thanks for the update(s)! 16 chapters waiting on a final review is fabulous. I hope that the remaining 5 can get through copyediting soon too — is this being done in the class with students? The introduction is a tough piece to write. Sometimes you need to see all the other pieces before you can wrap that up. You’ll get there soon enough!

You’re not alone in feeling that way: in fact, @kautzmka, @ed.beck and @alazear had all identified either going through the same themselves or hearing the same from someone on their project. It’s good to use the time between semesters to recharge, so if that means hitting pause on the project briefly, that should be okay. As you note, your team is very understanding, so rejig the timelines for release if you have to, and you’ll all be happier for having done it. :slight_smile:

@oct19-cohort, another month has flown by, which means that we have another check-in next week on June 5, Friday, at 1pm ET. We’ll meet on Zoom (at our standard link) with the same password. I’ll send out the password as a reminder over Direct Message to the cohort.

I proposed an idea last time we met to use our check-ins not just for questions and discussion, but to also tackle different topics/challenges that might be pertinent to your projects as a ‘mini-session.’ Topics could range from something as broad as “detailed formatting workflows” to a specific discussion about a feature or tool such as “interactive elements using H5P in Pressbooks.” Is there anything you want me to prepare on for next week? Please let me know in the next few days!

I hope everyone has been keeping well so far. I look forward to hearing your responses and chatting more next week.

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Thank you @apurva. Yes, for me, I think a refresher on detailed formatting workflows would be helpful =)


Great, thanks for letting me know. I’ll keep that in mind as a possible option for our mini-session, and see if the others have any other suggestions! :slight_smile: