Category Archives: Weekly Tips

Blackboard Test Settings, lynda.com, Save the Date

 It’s that time of the semester already, time to prepare for final exams.  Here is a helpful review of Blackboard Test Settings. 

TEST SETTINGS: Force Completion requires students to complete the test during that session. If they have a brief internet disconnection, they are locked out of the test. That’s when the emails begin. If you set the timer and do not choose Force Completion, students can easily resume their attempt without contacting you.  The Blackboard clock continues to run, so the student is not rewarded with more time..

. . We recommend using the timer settings and Auto-Submit instead of Force Completion. Do not use them both at the same time. A running clock is a deterrent to looking up answers elsewhere.
. . . Force Completion with LockDown Browser (LDB)? No. LDB does not like Force Completion. Use the timer and Auto-Submit instead.
. . . Randomize questions. That setting is just fine, but do not choose this option if you have a random block of questions in your exam.
. . . Test availability for just one student. Example: Student requiring accommodations per Disability Services. See the next paragraph “Test Availability…”
. . . Test feedback to students. What do they see and how do you control what they see? See the next paragraph “Test Availability…”

TEST AVAILABILITY EXCEPTIONS AND TEST FEEDBACK: We’ve had a few calls lately about how to make tests available to only one student who missed the test for a legitimate reason, and how to give extra time to a student who needs extra time per Disability Support Services accommodations. This is a new feature as of May 2014 – Test Availability Exceptions – and it is easy to use. The web page link at the end of this section includes information on Test Feedback that you will find useful.

One instructor’s best practice: She allows the students to only see the score upon submission; in the second setting she allows them to see their incorrect answers after the due date. She does this so students look up correct answers in their text, rather than seeing (and possibly sharing) all submitted and correct answers upon submission. You have many options – take a look.

Test Availability Exceptions AND Test Feedback to Students

Have Questions?  Please contact the IT Help Desk at 252.328.9866 | 800.340.7081 or Submit a Service Request.

Integrate tutorials on software, business and creative skills into your Blackboard courses.
lynda.com offers over 133,000 video tutorials that you can add to any content area of your Blackboard courses.  Link to these popular resources as you review course content or prepare to add content to your spring 2015 courses.  If your students need to learn how to use software such as PhotoShop, Microsoft Office, GIS, and AutoCad, be sure to check out the lynda.com library.  lynda.com provides both short tutorials, full-length courses, and hands-on project files. The lynda.com library also includes courses on job-search strategies, resume building, time management, and much more.To request access to add lynda.com tutorials to any of your Blackboard courses, please visit ECU lynda.com and submit the request form.Have Questions?  Please Contact the IT Help Desk at 252.328.9866 | 800.340.7081 or Submit a Service Request.
Save the Date: March 18, 2015
thinkin15-logo-2-sm-01
10th Annual Think-In
Think-In 2015: Teaching with Technology Showcase
Information Technology and Computing Services
Joyner Library
9 am to 12 pm
 DISSH-2-01
1st Annual DISSH Symposium
Digital Innovation and Scholarship
in Social Sciences and Humanities
Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences
Joyner Library
2 pm to 6 pm

Clicker Survey

February 7, 2014 

Clickers in the Classroom @ ECU

Audience Response Systems (clickers) are designed to actively engage students during class, gauge their level of understanding, and provide prompt feedback.  Turning Technologies is our current supported clicker, based on a campus recommendation from IT support, faculty, and students.  The purpose for maintaining this recommendation is to prevent students from having to purchase multiple clickers for different courses. The clicker recommendation/support includes integration with the Blackboard gradebook, as well as campus training and assistance.

As many of you know, last year Turning Technologies released Turning Point version 5, which was a major upgrade to combine multiple programs into one.  Now it’s time to check in with our clicker users and ask for feedback.  Please take a few minutes to tell us about your experiences using clickers in the classroom. Your feedback will help us in our planning efforts and in meeting your academic technology needs.

>>>Click Here to Start the Clickers Survey<<<

Think-In Call for Proposals (due 2/14/14)

February 3, 2014

ECU Faculty and Staff: Information Technology and Computing   Services (ITCS) would like to invite you to submit a proposal for the ninth   annual Think-In! This is a great opportunity to network with   colleagues and share the innovative strategies and learning technologies you   are using to enhance your classroom, both face-to-face and online.Think-In 2014 will be held in   Joyner Library on March 26th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. This year’s format will include poster sessions, complemented by a few presentations.The Think-In is always energizing and draws a crowd. Comments from your peers illustrate the value   of the Think-In:

  • “I learned a great deal that day, things that I can use in my teaching responsibilities.”  
  • “There was a useful focus on specific innovation/applications, and very engaging, helpful        presenters.”
  • “One of the obvious strengths was in networking and learning about the work of the other presenters.”

Mark your calendars and   submit your poster proposal today!  To learn more, please visit Think-In   2014.  Presentation proposals are due February 14th,   and you can access the proposal form here.  If you have any questions, please   contact Ginny Sconiers at sconiersg@ecu.edu. If you are new to ECU or have never attended a Think-In, check out the highlights and webcast on the website.                                                                     

© 2014 ITCS at East Carolina   University. ECU Learning Technologies   Digest is published by Information Technology and Computing Services.

Think-In 2014 Call for Proposals

ECU Faculty and Staff: Information Technology and Computing Services (ITCS) would like to invite you to submit a proposal for the ninth annual Think-In! This is a great opportunity to network with colleagues and see some of the innovative strategies and learning technologies faculty are using to teach.

Think-In 2014 will be held in Joyner Library on March 26th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. The event will showcase faculty who use technology to enhance their teaching in both face-to-face and distance education courses. This year’s format will include poster sessions, complimented by a few presentations.

The Think-In always proves exciting and draws a crowd. Comments from your peers illustrate the value of the Think-In:

  • “I learned a great deal that day, things that I can use in my teaching responsibilities.”  
  • “There was a useful focus on specific  innovation/applications, and very engaging, helpful presenters.”
  • “One of the obvious strengths was in networking and  learning about the work of the other presenters.”

Mark your calendars and submit your poster proposal today!  To learn more, please visit Think-In 2014.  Presentation proposals are due February 14th and you can access the proposal form here.  If you have any questions, please contact Ginny Sconiers at sconiersg@ecu.edu. If you are new to ECU or have never attended a Think-In, check out the highlights and webcast on the Think-In website.

Blackboard Course Purge: 2011 Summer and 2011 Fall courses

October 2, 2013

Every year we purge old Blackboard courses. We do so to stay within our storage goals and business policy of keeping only two years of Blackboard sites in our production system.  In a few short weeks, we will be purging the following courses (all of them) unless you submit a request to have your courses saved.

>>>>> The purge date is  October 23rd, 2013  <<<<< 

  • 2011 Summer #1 semester
  • 2011 Summer #2 semester
  • 2011 Full Term Summer semester
  • 2011 Fall semester

You have 2 choices for saving your course site. 

1 – Request us to save your Bb sites in Blackboard. If you choose this option you will need to list all FULL COURSE ID’s in your request submission. Here is the link to submission site:

>>>  https://ecu.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_6fDLG6V2h2F9lLD  <<<

2 – Export or Archive your Bb courses offline.  This is a suggested best practice for all used Blackboard courses at the end of every semester. Make sure you save all exported or archived sites on your ECU Piratedrive.

Export: Only course content
Archive: All course content, student interactions and gradebook data

In both an export or an archive you will be saving a .zip offline for your records. Please save these files in a secure location like Piratedrive.

  1. Go to the Control Panel in your Blackboard course, click Properties and Utilities.
  2. Click Archive course.
  3. Include Grade Center History if you want to save student work.
  4. Click Submit.
  5. Wait for an email confirming the archive process.
  6. Once you receive the email, go back to Export/Archive Course under the Control Panel. Click to download to a secure location (e.g., Pirate Drive).

Please download the one-page PDF, How to Archive Your Course for further details, including FERPA and HIPAA regulations regarding privacy. Note: The .zip file is only useful once uploaded to the Blackboard environment.

Questions? Contact us at ecublackboard@ecu.edu.

Classroom Technology Standards: Please Share your Input

May 1, 2013

 

We are reviewing classroom technology standards and would like your input. Please take a few moments to complete a four-question Classroom Technology survey.  This is your opportunity to share configuration recommendations and any new technologies you would like to see in the classroom. Your feedback will help us in our planning efforts and in meeting your academic technology needs.

Please share your input today or by May 24.

 >> Click Here to Start the Survey <<

 

Thank you for your time,
Information Technology and Computing Services
www.ecu.edu/itcs

Blackboard: Assessment Creation Best Practices and Update Reminder

April 29, 2013

ECU Faculty: As we approach the end of the semester and final exams, it’s the perfect time to share Assessment Creation Best Practices and Information. This blog post reviews a list of tutorials and best practices for both building and taking Blackboard exams. If you ever experience any issues with students taking your Blackboard exams, please report these problems to the Help Desk (www.help.ecu.edu) as soon as possible. When reporting these issues please include the following information.

• Course ID
• Test location and name
• Student email ID
• Symptoms (behavior/details, browser, PC or Mac)

Important Reminder: The planned downtime for the Blackboard update will start at 1 pm on May 11th (grades due at 12 noon). During this downtime period you will not have any access to the ECU Blackboard system. Please consider getting your Summer 1 and Full Term Blackboard sites ready before this downtime starts.

Beginning May 13th, you will have access to new features in Blackboard, which will make your Blackboard experience that much better. We invite you to visit the Blackboard 9 Service Pack 9 blog post to learn more about this update and the new features.
As always, if you have any questions please call or email Matt Long, Cindy Bowers, or Allen Dennis.

longm@ecu.edu / 328-9074
bowersc@ecu.edu / 328-9167
dennisa@ecu.edu / 328-2841

New Features Coming Soon…Blackboard, SabaMeeting, and TurningPoint

April 11, 2013

This is the time of the year when we upgrade our learning platforms to provide new functionality for faculty and students.  The time period in between spring and summer semesters is the optimal time for us to release new features and updates that will enhance your teaching and learning environment. In May, you can expect to see new features in Blackboard, SabaMeeting (formerly Centra) and TurningPoint.

 Blackboard: May 11th

 Beginning May 13th, you will have access to new features in Blackboard, which will make your Blackboard experience that much better. We invite you to visit the Blackboard 9 Service Pack 9 blog post to learn more about the new features.

 New Feature Summary:

 Course to Course Navigation – You will be able to quickly jump back and forth between your courses.

  • Auto Regrading – Have you ever found an error in a test (after students took it) and you had to manually change each student’s grade? With “Auto Regrading” you can correct the error in your test, and Blackboard automatically gives those extra points to each user who requires a grade change.
  • Copy and Paste from WORD option – How many times have you heard us say that copying/pasting from Word can cause problems? Another new feature is a cleanup tool; it strips html code that comes from pasting from a Microsoft Office document.
  • Course Structures – choose between a wide variety of pre-built course structures.  These course structures have a predefined navigation setup, such as menu tool links and content area. They “add” to your course and never overwrite anything (e.g. a menu item you created).

 **Please note that planned downtime for Blackboard will start at 1 pm on May 11th (after grades are due). You will receive notification when the Blackboard update is complete.  Please contact us at ecublackboard@ecu.edu if you have any questions.

SabaMeeting (Centra) Upgrade: May 25th  

 We are upgrading from SabaCentra 7.7.2 to SabaMeeting 8.1.1 during first summer session. This upgrade will introduce several new product changes and enhancements. One of the biggest changes that users will see is the change in the name of the program. Saba has changed the name of their web conferencing program from SabaCentra (which we’ve always just called Centra) to SabaMeeting. After this upgrade, the Resource Center will be located at http://www.ecu.edu/sabameeting/, the login page will be located at: https://sabameeting.ecu.edu/ and our e-mail address will change to sabameeting@ecu.edu.

 Another of the big changes in this release is that of a fully functional browser client. Saba is continuing movement from a client that has to be downloaded and installed to a version that runs within any browser. With this release, the browser client will have all of the capabilities of the desktop client and more because the browser client is where Saba will now be placing all of their new features. It’s important to note, that even after the summer 2013 upgrade, the desktop client that everyone is familiar with using will still be available for everyone to use alongside the browser client, so you will have plenty of time to get comfortable with the browser client.

 Just a few of the additional changes and enhancements include:

  • Ability for ECU faculty/staff to create their own meetings
  • Android client release
  • Option to make one primary live video large
  • As well as several more…For a full list of product changes and enhancements with descriptions of each, please visit: http://www.ecu.edu/sabameeting/upgrade2013.cfm.

This upgrade is planned for Memorial Day weekend (May 25th through the 27th).  Please contact us at centra@ecu.edu if you have any questions.

TurningPoint Upgrade: May 11th

We will be upgrading the TurningPoint Blackboard building block in May, which will allow you to begin using TurningPoint 5 software with Blackboard. TurningPoint 5 combines polling in PowerPoint, polling in any application, Self-Paced Polling and Results Manager all into one single program. Once we upgrade the TurningPoint building block, you must upgrade to version 5 of the software or you will no longer be able to upload clickers data into Blackboard.

The TurningPoint 5 software can be downloaded for free at Turning Technologies in the downloads area of the website. You are encouraged to download the “PC – No Install Version” or the “Mac – No Install Version” and install it directly onto your Piratedrive. By doing so, your program settings and clickers data will follow you to any computer that you use on campus, regardless of whether it is a computer in your classroom or the computer in your office. If you plan to use TurningPoint for Power Point to embed polling in your Power Point slides, you will also need to install and run TurningPoint 5 on your desktop. **Please note: student clickers data should only be stored on Piratedrive or a secure encrypted USB flash drive. Visit the ITCS Data Encryption page in the ITCS Service Catalog to learn more.

If you upload clickers data to Blackboard, we recommend that you go ahead and give the new version a try. Right away you will see the new enhancements and simplified interface changes between version 4 and version 5. The next training session will be offered on April 25th from 10:00 am to 11:30 am in Laupus Library Room 2502 G (West Campus). To sign up, just login to https://training.ecu.edu/ and locate the training titled “New TurningPoint 5 Clickers Training”.

 Please contact us at clickers@ecu.edu if you have any questions.

 

Think-In: Featuring poster presentations and concurrent sessions

Think-In 2013
Wednesday, April 3rd
9:00 am to 12:00 pm
Joyner Library 

  • Do you have just a few minutes to visit the Think-In?  Stop by and visit the poster area featuring 28 poster sessions by faculty, staff, and learning platform vendors.
  • Do you have 40 minutes to listen to one of our concurrent sessions?  Enjoy one or more concurrent sessions presented by faculty, staff and learning platform vendors.
  • Have more than an hour, then you will also have time for snacks and conversation too!

Don’t miss this once-a-year opportunity to learn about the innovative, creative and effective ways ECU faculty are integrating technology to support student learning.  Join us to discover new ideas to enhance your classroom, and enrich your teaching experience.    

Visit the Think-In 2013 website for the complete list of presentations and Register for the event. We’ll have great prizes and refreshments too

 We look forward to seeing you on April 3rd!

 Questions about Think-In 2013? Contact Ginny Sconiers at sconiersg@ecu.edu.

Think-In 2013 Registration

March 19, 2013

Think-In 2013
April 3rd, 9:00 am to 12:00 pm
Joyner Library

You are invited to Think-In 2013.  This Teaching with Technology showcase highlights the innovative, creative and effective use of technology in education with presentations and poster sessions by ECU faculty and staff.

 Think-In 2013 is your opportunity to:

  • Meet colleagues from other disciplines
  • Discover how ECU faculty are integrating technology to support student learning
  • Generate new ideas for your own teaching
  • Ask questions in an informal environment

This year’s presentation topics include collaboration technologies that enhance instruction, managing DE student expectations, enabling student centered learning, delivering short lecture ‘bytes’, collaborating for retention and engagement, and much more.

Visit the Think-In 2013 website for the list of presentations and Register for the event.

We look forward to seeing you on April 3rd!

Please contact Ginny Sconiers at sconiersg@ecu.edu if you have any questions about Think-In 2013.