From ATS: Spring 2016 Updates

Academic Technology Services has new software features, planned vendor visits, and several pilot projects in process this spring. In addition, there are opportunities to be involved in innovative classroom projects and participate in panel discussions at TEXPO on March 15, 2016.

Digication: new password feature and program assessment options

Our current e-portfolio system, Digication, has added new features that allow students to password-protect pages, enabling them to share their work with potential employers in the job search process. Further, students can now join a Digication course via Blackboard, which makes Digication’s template and course and program assessment feature a good option for departments who would like to conduct assessments of learning against a rubric. Finally, faculty and students who use the assignment feature may notice a change in the assignment submission interface. This interface update streamlines assignment submission by limiting visible options to those that are currently open for submission. For e-portfolio information, visit http://www.ats.neu.edu/teaching-technology/digication/.

Software vendor visits

Academic Technology Services is scheduling a series of visits from vendors so that students and faculty can better leverage free and discounted software provided by the university. Upcoming events include sessions provided by TopHat, AutoDesk, Microsoft, Articulate, MathWorks, IBM and Adobe. Please check our Special Events page to stay up to date on these visits.

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Pilots and projects in progress

We’re currently in the process of piloting several tools, including Zaption, an interactive video platform and Pragya, a smart repository and content management tool. To read more about these tools, join the pilot, or learn more about innovation in Academic Technology Services, please visit our Pilots and Projects page.

TEXPO-logo-300x94TEXPO 2016

TEXPO: Technology in Teaching Expo will be March 15, 2016 in the Curry Student Center. Panel topics will include pilot project outcomes, mobile photo and online editing, microlearning objects, storytelling, open learning resources, adaptive learning, and results of the Learning Management System (LMS) search recently undertaken by the university. If you’d like to present at TEXPO on any of the above topics or about other technology innovations in your classroom, please email ats@neu.edu.

 

24/7 Blackboard help

Students and faculty may now reach a staffed help desk 24/7 for answers to Blackboard questions and issues. You will hear a new call routing menu when you call 617.373.4357 which will help you get assistance faster any time of night or day.  For specific information about Blackboard support in your college or department, visit the ITS Knowledge Base accessible from myNEU and search on blackboard support.

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Discovery Lab

The Discovery lab, an exciting area located on the first floor of Snell Library near Argo Tea, is where you will find large presentation displays, whiteboards, and computers throughout the room, making it ideal for workshops, presentations, breakout sessions, and collaborative project discussions. Faculty, staff and students may reserve the room through the library’s website, http://library.northeastern.edu/. Faculty who would like to use the space on a weekly basis for collaborative instruction/active learning events, directed study, ongoing classes, or special events may contact ATS by sending an email to ats@neu.edu. The wall in the Discovery lab can be used to host curated content like posters or art, and the flat screen placed outside of the Discovery Lab facing Argo Tea can be used to publicize coming events in the Lab. To learn more about everything offered in the space, visit the Discovery Lab website.

Accessibility

ATS has created an accessibility resource page to provide tips and resources to make your course more accessible to students with disabilities. You can find out how to allow one student more time on a Blackboard assessment, request captions for a Tegrity video, create an accessible PDF, and other tasks. Our page also hosts several video resources to provide information on making courses accessible.

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From ATS: Fall 2015 Updates

Academic Technology Services is providing greater visibility into classroom technology, enhancing collaboration and learning spaces, piloting a new content creation tool, and reaching out for speakers at next year’s TEXPO. As a reminder, ATS provides classroom technology training throughout the year.

New Classroom Website

A new View The Classrooms site, which showcases classroom technology, is now available for the Northeastern community. Many enhanced classrooms are reshaping teaching and learning through the use of innovative technology in those rooms.

Information Technology Services, along with the Registrar’s Office, are in the process of updating Northeastern’s classrooms to provide increased flexibility, supporting the new needs of educators and students. Some of the changes are physical, in the way the spaces are configured; others are technological, enabling virtual participants to be involved in the classroom.

The new site gives you full visibility into what is available in a given spaces. It replaces the old “View the Classroom” application linked on the myNEU portal, and allows you to find classroom configurations and technology that will meet your needs. You can browse by building via a map, or use the advanced search to find specific requirements. It also provides detailed instructions for using the integrated technology for those signed in with their myNEU username and password.

Check out the site directly here, or look for it on the myNEU portal.

Discovery Lab Collaboration and Learning

The Discovery Lab, located on the first floor of Snell Library, is the ideal for space for people to come together in order to showcase, share, and demonstrate projects and ideas.

This summer, ITS updated the lab space with two new 6-foot whiteboards, adding to the two mobile whiteboard stations that are already in place. The updates make the room ideal for collaborative break-out sessions.

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The space can also be utilized for lectures and presentations, and will once again be available as a classroom. Last fall the Discovery Lab hosted three classes, two of which were directed studies. The room is outfitted with Mac and Windows computers with lab images, and large-screen TVs that can serve as displays for all the computers. It also has multiple places to plug in personal devices. Contact ATS at ats@northeastern.edu for assistance in booking the room with the Registrar’s Office for the term.

To learn more about everything offered in the space, visit the Discovery Lab website.

Zaption Software Pilot

Zaption is a new content creation tool that makes it easy for instructors to build interactivity into their video lessons, and the 2015 winner of LaunchEdu.

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Intrigued? ATS is looking for 10-15 participants for a limited pilot this fall at Northeastern to help gauge interest and utility. Contact ats@northeastern.edu to join the pilot team. To learn more about the tool, visit the Zaption site.

TEXPO 2016 Call for Panel Presentations

The next TEXPO: Technology in Teaching Expo has been announced for Tuesday, March 15, 2016. At this year’s inaugural TEXPO more than 80 faculty members were in attendance. There were six panels where faculty talked about how they use various technologies to support their teaching. Details and recorded sessions can be found on the TEXPO website.

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The call for panel presentations for the 2016 conference is now open. Please contact ats@neu.edu if you’d like to present on a technology that you use in the classroom, or in a flipped, blended, or online class. ATS will work with you to pilot new technologies and present on your experience. Share how you are leveraging the current supported technologies, and bring along stories about any of your successful technology adoptions.

Available Training From ATS

ATS offers courses on a variety of topics to help faculty learn about and use technology in their courses. In addition to the Introduction to Blackboard course, courses on other Blackboard features include the discussion board and the gradebook assessment. Other popular courses introduce you to Tegrity lecture capture, Blackboard Collaborate Web Conferencing, and TurningPoint student response system (clickers). More information can be found on the ATS training website. Customized and small-group versions are also available. Please contact ats@northeastern.edu with questions about individual or group registration.

 

From ATS: Summer 2015 Updates

Academic Technology Services is offering a number of resources for learning about and exploring the use of technology in the classroom, as well as a big enhancement to the tools available to use through Blackboard.

Technology in Teaching Resources

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TEXPO
Information Technology Services is excited to have hosted TEXPO, the first annual Technology in Teaching Expo, on March 17th. The event was quite successful. To listen to or watch some of the sessions, go to the TEXPO site.

  • Faculty and staff shared their experience with technologies used for teaching and learning in and out of the classroom, and new projects in development.
  • Training and support departments discussed the technology and tools available for faculty.
  • Professor Lyrical gave a lively keynote on student engagement.
  • ATS Director Stephanie Trowbridge presented an infographic (PDF) on tool use at Northeastern.

We look forward to hosting this great event next year, and have tentatively scheduled March 15, 2016 – save the date. If you have topics of interest or ideas for technologies that should be explored next year, email your suggestions to ats@northeastern.edu.

Course Development Technology Training Series
Beginning the summer semester, Academic Technology Services is offering the Online Course Development Technology Training Series on an ongoing basis. The series is designed to help new faculty and those who would like to refresh their knowledge of online teaching tools, and consists of three courses:

  • Blackboard Course Management – A two-hour, hands-on session focused on the course management aspects of the tool, which will make your life easier.
  • Tools for Creating Online Content and Interactions – A short session that offers an overview of engaging applications that faculty can use to move course content and student interactions online. Q&A will help you narrow in on tools to follow up on in more detail.
  • Storyline Basics – A two-hour, hands-on session in Storyline, a flexible and full-featured tool that faculty can use to create interactive e-learning content.

The courses can be taken as a series, or individually as desired; dates will be posted on the ATS training website. Customized and small-group versions are also available. Please contact ats@neu.edu with questions about individual or group registration.

New Tools

VoiceThread Available for Blackboard Integration
VoiceThread is a third-party tool that can be integrated into Blackboard, which allows you and your students to create multimedia presentations and group projects, and discuss via text, voice, or video. Discussion is asynchronous, so students can enter the discussion at their convenience, and you can watch the discussion as it unfolds.

Because Northeastern has purchased licenses for faculty and students, all faculty are granted Pro accounts when you log in through Blackboard. When the VoiceThread is created through Blackboard and linked correctly, sharing settings are easily managed. The integration will also automatically create a gradebook column, so that faculty can grade in VoiceThread and have the grade sent directly to the Blackboard gradebook.

Voice Thread Screenshot

Learn more about how VoiceThread works, and the proper way to create and link VoiceThread elements through Blackboard. A new training course, “VoiceThread Multimedia Discussions,” is also available beginning this month; specific dates are on the ATS training website.

Storyline 2 Now Available for Free Installation on Northeastern-Imaged Computers
Storyline provides a PowerPoint-compatible interface to help you create engaging and interactive online course materials that blend instruction, audio, video, and optional assessment – all in a visually interesting format. Whether you’re looking for an easy way to add engagement to voice-over-PowerPoint instruction that you already have, or you want to experiment with scenario-based learning activities, Storyline is a quick-and-easy solution.

While the software can be quite costly and it was previously available only in the Digital Scholarship Commons lab, a new enterprise license means that faculty and staff can use it for free on your Northeastern-imaged computer. Go to the ATS website for instructions for downloading the software and other resources. Training in Storyline functionality will be offered throughout the semester, and you can see course listings and register at the ATS website.

From ATS: Spring 2015 Teaching Technology Updates

To start off 2015, Academic Technology Services has a number of updates for classroom technologies, and is offering training on new solutions for student engagement.

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Tegrity

Faculty can now enable remote proctoring in Tegrity, to ensure student integrity for online assessments. Students can start remote proctor at the beginning of an exam to capture audio, video and desktop activity for the duration. When the assessment is complete, captures are uploaded to Tegrity for instructor review at up to 8x speed.

Instructors also now have the option to make Tegrity recorder available to students. Assign video projects, blogs or presentations after enabling this feature in your course options. Student recordings are always submitted for instructor review and approval before they are published to a course.

For more information on using the new Tegrity recording features, see the full documentation on the ATS Lecture Capture page.

Storyline

Articulate’s Storyline provides a PowerPoint-compatible interface to help you create engaging and interactive online course materials that blend instruction, audio, video, and optional assessment – all in a visually interesting format (click through on the example below).

learning object exampleStoryline has been available in the Digital Scholarship Commons for the last year, but beginning in early spring, it will also be available for download via the Software Center on your Northeastern-managed faculty/staff Windows computer.

Learn more and see example projects at the ATS Storyline page.

Training

Top Hat

ATS is now working with Top Hat to offer and support an innovative online alternative to classroom clicker devices. Welcome Top Hat to Northeastern on January 13, 2015, and learn how you can use Top Hat to engage your students and liven the learning experience.

Register for this special event, or schedule an individual training session with Top Hat representative Allison Scholbe.

Mark Your Calendars: New Teaching & Technology Expo on March 17th

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Academic Technology Services will hold its first Teaching & Technology Expo March 17, 2015 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Curry Student Center.

All Northeastern faculty and staff are invited to engage with colleagues, share knowledge, and hear how different departments are using technology and ATS is supporting your efforts.

Participant panels will take place in three locations in the CSC. Panel members from around the university will discuss their perspectives on classroom technology challenges and concerns, and share their insights and solutions.

View the schedule and register at the conference website.

Academic Technologies Training Update

Academic Technology Services training courses are in full swing. Courses are offered on a variety of topics to help faculty learn about and use technology in their courses. In addition to the Introduction to Blackboard course, courses on other Blackboard features include the discussion board and the gradebook assessment.

Gradebook Assessment (click to enlarge image)

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Other popular courses will introduce you to Tegrity lecture capture, Blackboard Collaborate Web Conferencing, and TurningPoint student response system (clickers).

As well, after success in a preliminary winter-summer pilot, we are increasing the frequency of the Articulate Storyline training series. Storyline provides a PowerPoint-compatible interface to help you create engaging and interactive online course materials that blend instruction, audio, video, and optional assessment – all in a visually interesting format. Whether you’re looking for an easy way to add engagement to voice-over-PowerPoint instruction that you already have, or you want to experiment with scenario-based learning activities (like this one), Storyline is a quick-and-easy solution.

Storyline Scenario (Click to interact)

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Not sure what technology you’d like to integrate? Our Creating Digital Learning Objects course provides an overview of the most popular tools and offers lots of opportunity for you to talk with an instructional technologist about your specific needs. Click to see the full list of courses or contact us about private training options.