Academic Technology Services has new and improved software and services to improve your teaching and learning experiences.
Over the past three years, 200+ faculty and staff have used Storyline 1 or 2 to create content for their courses or training needs. Based on the overwhelming success of their efforts, ITS has bought a volume license for Articulate 360, which provides cloud-based licensed access to Storyline 360 and several other applications for e-learning including:
- Storyline 360: An upgrade from Storyline 2 that allows you to create any interactive e-learning course you can imagine for any device imaginable, from desktop and laptop computers to tablets and smartphones. Windows only.
- Rise: Rise is a sleek web application that lets you quickly create beautiful, fully-responsive courses using basic interactivity. Rise courses have the latest easy-to-use web technologies, so they automatically adapt to any device, no extra work required. Because it is web-based, Rise is great if you don’t own a Windows computer.
- Preso: Preso is an iPad app for creating narrated presentations. You can add PDFs and images from your camera, photo library, or cloud services such as Dropbox or Google Drive, record narration and add annotations, and even pan and zoom to highlight important content. Then upload your project to Articulate 360 where you can collect feedback with Articulate Review, download the MP4 video, or export it as an LMS package.
- Peek is a screen-recording app for Mac and Windows computers.
- Replay 360: A powerful, intuitive video-recording app included with the Articulate 360 subscription. Use Replay 360 to create engaging e-learning videos by easily mixing screencasts, webcam videos, video files, audio tracks, images, and lower-third graphics.
- Content Library: A collection of professionally-designed slide templates, stock photos, and characters that dramatically speeds up your course development or add some pizazz to existing courses.
For more information or to request project-basis access to Storyline 360, please visit the Academic Technology Services website for more information.
Web Browser Upgrade
Over the past few years, web browser technology has become more advanced and less reliant on battery-intensive and less secure plugins and applications such as Flash and Java. As a result, many of the educational technology tools that ITS supports are leveraging new capabilities of these modern browsers that provide the same interactive experience without the use of Flash and Java. Updating your browser will result in a more interactive, faster, and more secure online experience. We wanted to share a few enhancements to tools that you’ll only be able to take advantage of if your browser is capable of supporting HTML5 and/or WebRTC content. Chrome has the best support for the tools we support, with Firefox a close second:
- VoiceThread: Users who choose to switch the HTML5 version of VoiceThread and use an updated version of Chrome or Firefox will not have to enable Flash to view and will be able to play VoiceThreads back at variable speeds.
- PlayPosit: PlayPosit is optimized for the latest versions of Google Chrome. If possible, we recommend using this browser for building lessons, classroom management, and playback. We can also certify student playback for the latest version of Safari.
- Bluejeans Web Conferencing: Chrome users can participate in video conferences within a browser tab, no plugin or app needed. You can find out more about setting join by browser as the default here. You’ll need to download the application, however, if you’d like to share your screen.
- Blackboard Collaborate Ultra: Blackboard has offered an updated version of their Collaborate Web Conferencing solution called Collaborate Ultra, which can be run directly through the browser without downloading software. Updated versions of Chrome and Firefox best support Collaborate Ultra’s new lightweight system. You’ll need to download a plugin, however, if you’d like to share your screen.
If you’re interested in updating your browser and need assistance, please contact the ITS Service Desk at 617.373.4357 (xHELP). If you’re unable to update your browser and notice that certain features do not load or work properly, you may need to enable Flash. Please review this information for help with enabling Flash. Keep in mind that you can allow Flash for only certain websites, such as https://blackboard.neu.edu or https://neu.voicethread.com if you do not want Flash to run on other sites for security or computer performance reasons.
Blackboard Student App and NEw Instructors
This summer, Blackboard released a new mobile app for instructors to grade on the go called Blackboard Instructor. In addition, Blackboard updated the name of the student mobile app from Bb Student to Blackboard. To learn more about each both changes, please visit the Blackboard Mobile Support page.
The Northeastern on-ground and online community now share one instance of the Digication E-Portfolio system, which is accessible at https://northeastern.digication.com.
All user profile information, data, course information, and e-portfolios have been migrated from one system to the other, so all users should log into https://northeastern.digication.com. Portfolio links that were previously shared with http://myneufolio.digication.com in the URL will continue to work, though they will also be available using the https://northeastern.digication.com URL.
Digication may still be used as a building block tool in Blackboard. We believe this is the easiest way to use Digication in a course context because it simplifies sharing and permissions-setting processes that are necessary when accessing Digication directly.
For technology help with implementing Digication, please register for a course taught by Academic Technology Services or email email@example.com to schedule a one-on-one session. If you are curious about how portfolios might be integrated into your teaching, the Center for Advancing Teaching and Learning through Research offers courses and consultation on the topic.
Windows 10 – Be a Classroom Tester
If you’re teaching on the main Boston campus for the Fall 2017 semester, we could use your help testing Windows 10 in the classroom.
Testers need only perform their regular classroom tasks during regular classroom time to provide feedback on their experience with the new operating system.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
Video Production Resources
Academic Technology Services has several video production resources available to Northeastern faculty. Producing videos for your class and using them in Blackboard, online, or in the classroom will help your students retain information, understand complex concepts quicker, and connect them to the world outside the classroom. Video can provide a common visual experience for your students and help them practice critical viewing skills and media literacy.
Check out the ATS website and look at the Teaching Technology and the Support & Consultation tabs. Find information about the various tools and services that we support or provide, including our write board, Tegrity Lecture Capture, PlayPosit, video production and editing – even essential information you should know about converting your old VHS tapes to digital formats. As well, we have created an application that will help you calculate precisely where to position your video camera for the best composition.
To schedule production and editing sessions, we have information about the production process with a link to our online request form.
Look for our workshop schedule, too. We offer classes in mobile device photography and videography, online video editors, Final Cut Pro editing software, campus video editing resources, digital storytelling, and finding and using online multimedia materials.
Create Interactive Videos Using PlayPosit
PlayPosit, an online learning environment to create and share interactive video lessons, is now available for all Northeastern faculty, staff and students. Using PlayPosit you can very easily turn a passive video from YouTube, TedTalks, Kaltura, and more into an interactive video which will provide data and feedback.
Through PlayPosit you can assign video lesson to your students and get analytics on their answers, and time spent interacting with the video. PlayPosit is also integrated into Blackboard, allowing you to create, assign, and monitor all from within your course.
View this PlayPosit example to better understand what you can do with PlayPosit.
NEW this semester! PlayPosit has a navigation interface which makes building and managing your PlayPosit lessons even easier. Read more here.
For more information, visit the PlayPosit interactive video page on the ITS website.