Guest Post by Dr. Malcolm Murray, Learning Technologies Team Leader at Durham University. Dr. Murray’s session, “Rethinking Student Feedback” focuses on Pedagogical Best Practices using Blackboard Learn, Release 9.x. Join him on 7/13/2011, 3:00 PM – 3:55 PM, Titian 2206. Feedback (and feeding forward) is a hot topic in higher education, with recent student satisfaction metrics only serving to increase institutions’ focus in this area. Durham University has commissioned a range of studies into feedback, involving both staff (faculty) and students. These describe the current provision, identify effective practice and areas for improvement. Some of the student views in particular came as a surprise. My BbWorld presentation will use these findings to look at the entire process – from both the student and staff perspective. It will begin with our recommendations for setting online assessments, before moving to look at electronic submission. This includes a revealing time plot showing how near to (and for some, surprisingly long after) the deadline students submit their work! I then plan to share experiences of experiments in online marking (some using tablets, some audio feedback). Then I want to consider the options for the return of work and feedback, particularly those which promote/permit reflection and dialogue.
Ray Henderson, President Blackboard Learn, delivered the keynote at Blackboard’s 2011 Teaching + Learning Conference at the University of Leeds earlier this Spring. More than 200 clients across EMEA came together to network with their peers and to hear from Blackboard about the latest product and support innovations happening across platforms. If you missed Ray’s keynote, you can view it here in its entirety. We were also fortunate to have Dr. Sugata Mitra, from Newcastle University deliver the second keynote. Dr. Mitra has spoken at TED and his “Hole in the Wall” research inspired the book “Slumdog Millionaire.” You can view Dr. Mitra’s keynote here.
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Guest Post by Misty Cobb, Director of Distance Education, Jacksonville State University Once upon a time…well maybe not. Last year at this time, Jacksonville State University was considering other learning management systems for their institution. But over the past year, Blackboard and JSU have taken significant strides towards building a relationship that is a true mutual partnership. What does your relationship with Blackboard look like? Have you evaluated other learning management systems hoping that the grass was greener somewhere? If so, this panel presentation may bring you hope.
BbWorld Session Preview: Strategies for Minimizing the Bumps and Staying Ahead of the Curve on the Road to Blackboard Learn, Release 9.1
Guest Post by Alison Marcoff, Assistant Director, eLearning Support & Training, Florida Atlantic University Are you totally unfazed by the idea of upgrading from Blackboard Learn™ Release 8 to Release 9.1? Do you think that your faculty will adjust easily and thank you for making their lives easier? Do you think your life will be stress-free once you make the switch? If so, then maybe you should just skip this presentation…. No, wait—maybe this presentation is actually perfect for you. You need a wake-up call!
Guest Post by Bill De Wysockie, Academic Systems Manager at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary It is just a little over two months to go before BbWorld 2011. That means a little over two months left to prepare for my presentation at a preconference workshop. I’m so glad that deep down in my heart I’m a pragmatist. According to Merriam-Webster (the online version, of course), pragmatism is “a practical approach to problems and affairs.” So, how am I a pragmatist? In my way of thinking, the essence of pragmatism is getting the job done early. I learned this lesson in college after undergoing several traumatic all-nighters. At some point I must have muttered, “Enough is enough. I can’t go on like this.” For I gradually turned over the proverbial new leaf and started anticipating deadlines.