ECU Faculty and Staff: Happy New Year! We hope that your semester is off to a great start. Check out this month’s learning technology news to learn more about Classroom Lecture Capture, Blackboard News, Cornerstone, Think-In 2014, and more.
|Technology for Thought|
The Blackboard team has been busy with the start of Spring Semester and we have a little bit of news and some tips for you. First of all, welcome back! And welcome to the new instructors on campus.
Many instructors like to merge course sections so they have to manage only one course. Fortunately, that is an easy task and we have instructions on how to use the Section Merge Tool in Blackboard. Copying content from one semester to the next is also something that makes an instructor’s life easier. The only “by the way…” for course copies is not to repeat the process. Visit the Scenarios for Course Copies and Course Collapses to find easy-to-follow short videos on the section merge and course copy tools.
At this time of the year, there are many drops/adds, so don’t be surprised to see your course enrollments change from one day to the next. We sync our files with Banner multiple times a day, so any change to your course or your teaching schedule will catch up in short order.
The Blackboard team has a favorite tool that is still being discovered by instructors. Respondus LockDown Browser is a tool designed to promote academic integrity and reduce potential technical issues for students. We have many instructors who use it and love it. Basically, LockDown Browser is a special browser that the student installs on his or her computer (it is also available in our computer labs) and the student uses that special browser (we call it LDB) to log into Blackboard and take exams. LDB prevents the user from opening another window, checking email, taking screenshots, logging out before submitting, and much more. For the instructor, it is a simple setting change in Blackboard to require that the exam be taken in LDB. If you’d like an opportunity to learn more about this tool in Blackboard, you can sign up for a webinar (about 40 minutes) and watch it in your office or at home. Please click here to register for upcoming sessions on Wednesday, January 22nd at 10 am ET or Tuesday, January 28th at 2 pm ET. It’s free!
We have six Blackboard Overview sessions scheduled for this month for those new instructors who would like some Blackboard training. And, we always love to see TAs and GAs in our sessions, so please let them know they are welcome. Sign up in Cornerstone, ECU’s new employee training system. Finally, our Blackboard Blog is a good place to start when looking for instructional materials, so please make it a “favorite.” You can find our blog at http://blog.ecu.edu/sites/blackboard/faculty-support/.
Blackboard Upgrade: May 2014
In May 2014 (just after the spring semester ends) Blackboard will upgrade to Service Pack 13. We have a pilot group testing the new version this semester. They are teaching their spring classes on our pilot server and we are grateful for their participation. Later this semester, you’ll see training opportunities and more announcements on the new things you’ll see in SP13.
|Cornerstone: ECU’s New Employee Training System
Cornerstone is your new access point to register for training and take online training courses delivered by many of the departments on campus, including IT Training provided by ITCS. Your personalized training center provides access to your training transcript, upcoming sessions, and any online training in progress. In the Browse for Training area you will see a link to ITCS training. This month’s learning technologies classes include: Blackboard Overview, SabaMeeting Virtual Classroom and New & Advanced Features, Tegrity Lecture Capture for Faculty and Staff, and Beginner WordPress Blog training. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you Register for Training in Cornerstone.
|Lecture Capture with Mediasite and Tegrity
ECU supports two lecture capture systems that enable you to record and share your classroom lectures. Mediasite is the hardware solution available in over 50 classrooms on campus and Tegrity is the software solution available in 17 classrooms. Tegrity also offers a desktop recorder so you can record instructional content anywhere, anytime. It’s not too late to get started with either technology this semester! To locate lecture capture classrooms on campus, search for Record your Class in the Technology-Enhanced Classrooms Database.
Here’s what one instructor had to say after using Tegrity in the classroom: “Students reported to me that they changed the way they take notes in class (writing down time periods in lecture) so that when they reviewed the Tegrity lecture they could more easily review the specific content areas they wanted to review in more detail. The students love adding this resource! Thank you!!”
More about Mediasite Classrooms: Mediasite captures high quality full motion video and content presented on the instructor’s station, such as a PowerPoint presentation or software demonstration. Mediasite is very user friendly, and you do not need any advanced training. You simply teach class as you normally would and Mediasite does the rest.
How do you get started with Mediasite? Contact the Instructional Technology Consultant (ITC) for your Academic Unit. Your ITC can add your class to Mediasite and create a schedule to automatically record each time your face-to-face class meets. To find the ITC for your Academic Unit, please visit: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/itc/.
More about Tegrity Classrooms: Tegrity is integrated with Blackboard and provides student viewing statistics. You simply walk into the classroom, activate the Tegrity Recorder, and upon completion of your class, upload the recording to your students through Blackboard. To help you get started, we’ll even assist with your first few class recordings.
Tegrity Desktop Recorder: Now you can easily record content to “flip your classroom”, capture test reviews, explain assignment instructions, demonstrate software, record micro-lectures and more. Tegrity records your desktop activity, audio, and web-cam video, (which is optional if you’re camera shy).
Here’s what one student had to say about Tegrity: “I really like being able to see/hear what the teacher had to say regarding our assignments as well as better clarification of examples. As a distance education student, this really allowed me to feel more connected to the classes”.
How do you get started with Tegrity? To ensure your success, we recommend that you attend a training session or view our training videos on the Tegrity blog. To have the Tegrity Classes link enabled in your Blackboard course(s), please complete the Tegrity Course Request form at the IT Help Desk. If you have any questions, please contact us at Tegrity@ecu.edu.
|SabaMeeting Evening Support Hours Monday-Thursday until 8:00 PM
SabaMeeting (formerly Centra) is primarily used in the evenings. Because of this, on a trial basis, we are extending the support hours until 8:00 PM Monday through Thursday. Many events continue much later than 8:00 PM; however the majority of the events are underway by 8:00 PM. This extra support will ensure faculty and students are able to get into their evening SabaMeeting events and actively participate.
The preferred contact information for SabaMeeting is still the ECU IT Helpdesk at 252-328-9866 | 800-340-7081 or via a ticket submitted at the IT Help Desk. If faculty or students are actively participating in a SabaMeeting event and immediate assistance is needed, the IT Helpdesk staff will be able to transfer or direct them to our SabaMeeting support desk at 252-737-2388 or SabaMeeting@ecu.edu.
| Think-In 2014
Mark your calendars for March 26th, 2014 (10:00 am to 1:00 pm). This spring we will host the 9th annual Think-In in Joyner Library. Think-In 2014 will offer a combination of concurrent breakout sessions and the ever popular poster presentations. Watch for the upcoming call for proposals!
What did participants say about Think-In 2013?
| We need your feedback on WIRELESS networking at ECU!
We are interested in your feedback on wireless networking at ECU. Please take a moment to respond to a brief survey (one question) related to wireless on campus. Your feedback will help us in our planning efforts and in meeting your academic technology needs.
Thank you for your time,