Author Archives: Christine Wilson

Michael Dixon

Alumnus Accepts Position as Assistant Director at University of Richmond

Congratulations, MS-IT and Distance Learning and Administration certificate program alumnus Michael Dixon!

Michael just accepted a new position with the University of Richmond as their Assistant Director of Teaching, Learning, and Technology.

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Week 3 – Let Blackboard Work For You – Week of 01/26/15

So far we have been talking about dates, so this week we will continue along those lines. Chances are you already know when you plan to release each module of your course. Chances are you manually go in and release them, why not let Blackboard do the work for you? Did you know that you can set your course up so that modules can automatically release based on date or completion?

The tool used for this is Adaptive Release. It can seem a bit daunting, but is really easy to use. If you want to use it for an entire module, just create a folder for the module and put all of the items for the module within the folder. The items within the folder will only be able to be accessed once the folder itself if accessible.

To use Adaptive Release, click the down arrow to the right of the item’s name. Then choose Adaptive Release. You can then set up the Start and End date, Membership (Groups, or Individual Users), or Grade (Based on completion of another assignment). You can set up as many of these criteria as you like, but make sure that whatever you chose is achievable. For example, if you make it based on Grade, don’t set it based on completion of the Final Exam, when the exam won’t be taken before this item is completed. This is usually the problem people run into when trying to use Adaptive Release.

Once this is set up, students will only be able to view the item once the criteria are met. Personally, I like to set up Adaptive Release for Modules based on the completion of the assignment from the previous module, so those who may want to work ahead in an online class can do so. If you choose Advanced Adaptive Release you can set up several criteria if you chose. I like setting my courses up like this, when possible, so I can spend more time grading and working with students rather than worrying about opening and closing sections. (Although I have talked about setting up folders for Adaptive Release, you can also set up individual items.)

If you ever need to change any of the dates you have set up using Adaptive Release, did you know you can use the Blackboard Calendar to do so, like we talked about in Week 2? You can also use the Date Management Tool from Week 1 to make changes for these next semester as well.

Another benefit of opening sections up as you go, is you can arrange them in reverse order, so the Module you are currently working on is always at the top, and the previous ones are always available below for review purposes.

I hope this information on Adaptive Release is useful to you, and I encourage you to try it at least once. If you run into questions or problems throughout the semester with Blackboard, please take advantage of the COE Helpdesk.

Throughout the semester, the OAA-Instructional Technology Team will be offering Professional Development opportunities. For more information on these opportunities, please visit the COE Professional Development website. To register for any professional development sessions, please use Cornerstone.

Blackboard Calendar

Week 2 – Course Calendar – Week of 1/19/15

Last week we talked about the Date Management Tool, which seemed fitting at the beginning of the semester. This week we will continue along the lines of dates, as this is the time when most faculty are working to get courses and dates set up for the semester.

In Blackboard, there is a Course Calendar for every course within it, and you can easily look at the calendar for every course you are involved in at once, you can even import these calendars into your Outlook calendar, if you choose. Taking advantage of these calendars can be a great benefit to your students, as they will be able to easily check on their assignments and requirements for all of their courses in one place. When you set up dates for assignments, tests, discussions, journals, announcements, etc., in Blackboard, you are automatically populating the calendar. There are no extra steps required!!

As the semester wears on, inevitably, due dates will change. It can be a pain to go into assignments to change these dates, and this is where the calendar can really be helpful to you. Did you know the calendar has a drag and drop feature? It’s true! If you have an assignment due on one day and it changes, you can simply drag that assignment to the new day and the date will change within the assignment. How easy is that? Need to change something about the assignment? You can do that from the calendar too!

Ok, I’ve made all of these promises, let me give you some more specifics. First of all, in order for this to work, you do need to set up dates in your course. The calendar will show Start, Due, and End dates for anything that is gradable as well as Announcements you create.

To access your calendar, you need to be in Blackboard, but not necessarily in a course. At the top left of any Blackboard page, you will see your name and an arrow pointing down.  If you click on the arrow, you will see several choices, including an icon of a calendar. Click on this icon.

In the light gray section you can choose a daily, weekly or monthly view, the date you want to view, and which Blackboard Course calendar(s) you’d like to view. Each calendar is color coded, and you can change the colors by clicking the dark gray triangle in the bottom right corner of that calendar’s name, if you choose.

The right side shows the calendar. If you want to change the due date or time, you can simply find the item on the calendar and drag it to the new date. If you need to change the time – change to the weekly or daily view to have more control over specific times. You can also double-click the item to make bigger changes. Once you have the calendar item open, you can change the name of the item all together (yes it will change the item in the course as well), and make bigger changes to the date. If you need to make changes to the actual assignment, you will see a link “Edit this . . .” If you click this link, it will take you to the item within the course and out of the calendar.

You can add events to the course calendar, but they will only be added to the calendar. This is not a way to add assignments to your course. One possible suggestion for adding events to your course would be to add your office hours, so they are easily available to your students.

If you would like, you can export your Blackboard Calendars to your Outlook calendar using the link at the bottom of the light gray section. Unfortunately you cannot import your Outlook calendar to Blackboard.

Plan to attend the profession development session “Becoming Date Friendly in Blackboard” on using the Calendar and the Date Management Tool on February 2nd from 2-3 pm in Speight 225. To attend, register today using Cornerstone!

I hope this information about the Blackboard Calendar was useful to you. If you run into questions or problems throughout the semester with Blackboard, please take advantage of the COE Helpdesk.

Throughout the semester, the OAA-Instructional Technology Team will be offering Professional Development opportunities. For more information on these opportunities, please visit the COE Professional Development website. To register for any professional development sessions, please use Cornerstone.

COE Seal - Feature Image

Everyone Has News to Share

In the College of Education, we believe the best way to find out about what is going on in our departments, classrooms, and clubs as well as in the lives of our students, faculty, staff, and alumni is by encouraging them to share their news and events with us.

As one of the larger colleges at East Carolina University, we do our best to cover all that is going on, but we know there is more, and we want to know about it! If there is something newsworthy that you believe the college should share, please let us know about it.

Members of the community can share their news by sending an email to coewebteam@ecu.edu. We are happy to share relevant news stories on our news blog, website, Facebook page and Twitter. Please remember that in order for us to run a story on the website, it must be accompanied by a photo. If you have an upcoming event that would be of interest, we would be happy to share that as well.

ECU faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to use the COE helpdesk to submit their news and other promotion requests. College of Education faculty are invited to attend the upcoming professional development session “Keep Your Department in the Spotlight” on February 25th from 10-11 am to learn about all the tools COE faculty and staff have at their disposal to get the word out.

You know your story better than anyone. Won’t you share it with us?

Alpha Delta Kappa

Alpha Delta Kappa Scholarships Available

Educations majors who are interested in scholarships may want to take a few minutes to look at the attached scholarship applications. They are from Alpha Delta Kappa, a well-established organization of women educators. This is money that can be used to assist with tuition and books. For each of the two scholarships, there is an overview document and an application attachment.

Dr. Robin Hamilton

Alumna is Southeast Regional Principal of the Year

Dr. Robin Hamilton of Parsley Elementary School has been named 2015 Southeast Regional Principal of the Year by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI). Hamilton is a recent graduate of the College of Education’s Educational Leadership program.

The news was delivered to Dr. Hamilton at a surprise ceremony and reception this morning, Friday, January 9, 2015. In attendance were New Hanover County Board of Education members, NCDPI officials, New Hanover County Schools (NHCS) Senior Staff, Parsley Elementary School staff and students, and Dr. Hamilton’s family. Dr. Sandra Sheridan, retired assistant superintendent of Human Resources, was the keynote speaker for the event.

“I love being a principal. I am humbled and so surprised by this honor,” Dr. Hamilton said.

This past June, Dr. Hamilton was named New Hanover County’s Principal of the Year, and was then chosen out of other top principals from 13 counties in Southeastern North Carolina to be named 2015 Regional Principal of the Year. She will now go on to compete against seven other principals for the honor of State Principal of the Year in May of 2015.

While earning her doctorate, Hamilton was also the recipient of the 2014 Glatthorn Distinguished Dissertation award.

Blackboard learn simply better

Weekly Blackboard Tips

Welcome back to an exciting new semester in the College of Education at ECU. This semester, you will be seeing a new feature on the COE Blog giving you weekly Blackboard tips to give you bite-sized tips on Blackboard to help enhance your online presence, or just make your life in Blackboard a little easier.

Are you stuck and don’t know what to do? Well, you’re in the right place. Here you will be able to find tips and tutorials on a variety of tools used in the COE.

To get you started, What’s New in Blackboard 9.1 is a good overview.

Comments are available, so feel free to comment here with questions, and we will do our best to get you the answer, and allow others to benefit from the question, and will help to lead the discussion and the tips that may come in the upcoming weeks.

Date_Management

Week 1 – Blackboard Date Management – Week of 01/12/15

It is nice that each semester you can reuse your class from a previous semester and only need to tweak the content and assignments a bit. It is a pain, if you use dates, you need to go through and painstakingly change each one throughout the class. Or is it??

A new tool introduced with the latest version of Blackboard, that ECU is using, is the Date Management Tool. It allows you to have all of the dates in your course change by a number of days that you, the instructor, determines, up to +/- 999 days.

Yes, I can already hear you saying, “But all the dates in the class won’t change exactly the same amount!” I’m sure that is true, but personally I would rather go in and manually change a few dates than have to go in and manually change each and every date, wouldn’t you? But, let’s say you wouldn’t, in the Date Management Tool, you can choose to “List All Dates For Review” and it will allow you to choose specific items and change dates as you see fit, if that works better for you.

Personally, I recommend a combination of the two. A broad sweep of the course getting the dates into at least the right semester, and then “List All Dates For Review” to go in and tweak several dates at once that still need adjusting for holidays, breaks etc.

Another option you have, once you get your dates in the right ball park is to use the calendar itself. It is particularly useful when dates need to be changed individually or on the fly. Next week, we’ll discuss how to use the Blackboard calendar to make your life, and the life of your students easier.

Plan to attend the profession development session “Becoming Date Friendly in Blackboard” on using the Calendar and the Date Management Tool on February 2nd from 2-3 pm in Speight 225. To attend, register today using Cornerstone!

Throughout the semester, the OAA-Instructional Technology Team will be offering Professional Development opportunities. For more information on these opportunities, please visit the COE Professional Development website. We are currently still in the planning process for this semester, so please use this website if you have any specific requests. To register for any professional development sessions, please use Cornerstone.

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LEED Student Selected for AERA Institue

AERA_LogoMr. Levy Brown, a current student in the Educational Leadership program, was selected as a participant in the 8th Annual Asa G. Hilliard III and Barbara A. Sizemore Research Institute on African Americans and Education sponsored by the American Educational Research Association’s (AERA) Research Focus on Black Education SIG to pursue his doctorate.

According to the institute’s directors, Drs. Jerlando F L. Jackson (Vilas Distinguished Professor of Higher Education, Director and Chief Research Scientist, Wisconsin’s Equity and Inclusion Laboratory University of Wisconsin-Madison) and Lamont A. Flowers (Distinguished Professor of Educational Leadership and Executive Director, Charles H. Houston Center for the Study of the Black Experience in Education Clemson University), Mr. Brown was selected from among a large national pool of applicants.

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COE Awarded Grant to Bring New Pitt County Teachers Back to Graduate School

By Crystal Baity
ECU News Services

East Carolina University wants to entice new teachers in Pitt County to become students again.

ECU’s College of Education has received a $60,000 grant from the BelleJar Foundation that will help pay for 12 first-year teachers in high-need schools to get their master’s degrees in a collaborative effort with Pitt County Schools.

Seven teachers have enrolled in graduate school at ECU, and officials are recruiting to fill the remaining slots at Belvoir Elementary, C.M. Eppes Middle, HB Sugg/SD Bundy Elementary and North Pitt High.

High-need schools typically have more beginning teachers, double-digit teacher turnover rates, and a large number of students who receive free and reduced lunch.

“We want to touch as many teachers as we can,” said Dr. Judy Smith, ECU associate professor of elementary education and middle grades education. “We are preparing effective teachers and we want to retain those teachers in eastern North Carolina.” The program, Collaborative Teaching Communities, is aimed at giving new teachers “the time and support necessary to gain skills and confidence required to teach successfully, particularly in high need settings,” according to the grant summary.

Those in the program will be part of professional teaching teams. The teams will include one master teacher, two ECU undergraduate co-teaching student interns and two novice teachers (first to third year teachers). The program builds on a successful co-teaching model piloted in the ECU College of Education.

For the full article, please visit the ECU News Services Article Preparing Effective Teachers.