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Sat, Jul 28, 2007

The Seven Challenges - Communication Skills for Personal and Professional Development

Dennis Rivers from has “modularized” his friendly communication skills workbook and made it available via the Connexions learning materials repository based out of Rice University.

The self-paced course entitled Communication Skills for Personal and Professional Development: The Seven Challenges Approach covers the following topics:

Overview: The terrain of communication skills.
Challenge One: listening more carefully and more responsively
Challenge Two: Explaining your conversational intent and invite consent
Challenge Three: Expressing yourself more clearly and completely with the “five I-messages”
Challenge Four: Translating criticisms and complaints into requests and explaining envisioned positive outcomes
Challenge Five: Asking questions more ‘open-endedly’ and more creatively
Challenge Six: Thanking - Exploring and expressing more appreciation, gratitude, encouragement and delight
Challenge Seven: Adopting the continuous learning perspective

A one page summary of the challenges is available here as a pdf.

The entire workbook is also available in several different formats directly from the Cooperative Communication Skills Extended Learning Community.

Challenge 2


Posted by: Bill Warters on 2007 07 28 | Filed under Learning Objects  

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Thu, Jul 26, 2007

Video Interview with Richard Rubenstein - Conflict Resolution in Iraq

Richard Rubenstein This 6-minute YouTube video provides an excerpt from a longer interview with Richard Rubenstein. In the longer 58-minute interview, Rubenstein also discusses his latest book, Thus Saith the Lord, wherein Rubenstein studies how God of the ancient Israelites has influenced how we resolve conflict, and created the foundation of the American judicial system.

Rubenstein is a former director and current faculty member of George Mason University’s Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (ICAR). An expert on religious conflict, terrorism, and methods of resolving serious international and domestic disputes, Rubenstein has lectured throughout America and Europe on topics ranging from the philosophy and practice of conflict resolution to the war on terrorism and the current conflict in Iraq.

See Full version of the Interview on


Posted by: Bill Warters on 2007 07 26 | Filed under Conflict Resolution  

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Wed, Jul 18, 2007

WikiMindMap: A Virtual and Visual Knowledge Feast

Wikipedia has grown into a large and valuable collection of knowledge on many topics and it is available in many languages. Now, with, you can visually browse topics that interest you and find connections you didn’t know existed. WikiMindMap is based on an opensource Flash-based browser developed for FreeMind, another cool mind mapping tool.

To use WikiMindMap, you choose the language of the Wikipedia you want to search, enter a term or phrase, and then wait for your visual overview to appear. Topics with a plus sign next to them can be expanded or collapsed and you can take a topic you are interested in and make it the center of the map by clicking the green refresh button. You can also click and drag the body of the page to reposition the display if it stretches beyond your browser window. By using the tools at the top center of the page, you can increase the size of the words or search for a term within the found set and have it highlighted for you. Best of all, clicking on the text of a displayed term takes you directly to the wikipedia entry for that term, or in some cases to a related web link. I liked the results for a search on Mediation and one on Conflict as a quick way to explore the organization of a topic. What a great tool!

WikiMindMap image of Mediation Search


Posted by: Bill Warters on 2007 07 18 | Filed under Research Tools  

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Sun, Jul 01, 2007

World Conflicts Presented Using the Exhibit Toolkit (MIT Simile Project)

Ryan Lee has taken 2006 data from the Heidelberg Institute for International Conflict Research’s report on world conflict, known as the Conflict Barometer and used it to demonstrate some of the flexibility offered by MIT’s new Exhibit Toolkit. Exhibit is a data publishing framework that lets you create data-driven web pages with support for sorting, filtering, and rich visualizations by writing only HTML and optionally some CSS and Javascript code. EXHIBIT is part of the SIMILE project that also includes Timeline (see my campus conflict history Timeline example). SIMILE is focused on developing robust, open source tools based on Semantic Web technologies that improve access, management and reuse among digital assets. SIMILE stands for Semantic Interoperability of Metadata and Information in unLike Environments. You can see Ryan’s display in action here (Firefox browser recommended).

Conflict Map Screenshot


Posted by: Bill Warters on 2007 07 01 | Filed under Research Tools  

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