We use the Internet to read news, to gather research, to socialize, and more, but some are still skeptical about the ability to teach an engaging and successful course online. Achieving success in an e-Learning environment is actually quite attainable and each year, more instructors make the move. Today, I’d like to focus on one individual who recently made the move online. Dr. Angela Green is the Director of Nursing Research at Arkansas Children’s Hospital and a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. She and her team won a 2012 Catalyst Award for Staff Development. This award honors those who use Blackboard solutions to support and enhance faculty and staff development skills that provide a better learning experience for students and faculty themselves.
When Scott Davis, Technology Services Director of Applications Services, and his team set out to create a mobile campus application (“app”) for Virginia Commonwealth University (“VCU”), they didn’t just envision creating another app but rather, an extension of the school. To ensure this, Davis and his team partnered with Blackboard to develop a platform that combined VCU’s vision to bring technology to the campus and Blackboard’s expertise in building mobile applications that transform learning.
In the competitive environment to attract talented students in higher education, universities are looking to have an edge. They struggle to meet the needs and expectations of millennial and non-traditional students. Students are using their mobile devices for email, text messaging, and social networking.
Furthermore, today’s student is entering college already familiar with a course management system from their K12 environment. Through VCU Mobile, VCU is able to keep students engaged so they are more invested in the classroom, more likely to capitalize on resources provided by the institution, and ultimately perform better academically.
“Mobile brings down the classroom barrier and makes for a more engaging experience” says Davis.
Guest Blog Post from Kimberly Seeber. Kimberly lives in Bloomington, Indiana, US. She is a licensed elementary teacher and a graduate student in the Instructional Systems Technology residential master’s program at Indiana University. Her interests include technology integration in the K-12 environment and online learning. Kimberly is sharing the wealth of knowledge from Week 4 of the Designing an Exemplary Course MOOC.
The last week of the Designing an Exemplary Course MOOC concluded with a valuable discussion about how instructors can support students in an online environment. The discussion began with sharing strategies that promote academic integrity and ended with strategies that support students’ use of technology tools that are not integrated into the course management system.
Students are not the only ones caught plagiarizing. In fact, a professor from the University of California at Berkeley is currently under investigation for allegedly borrowing ideas without proper citations, reports the Inside Higher Ed news publication. Do YOU have adequate measures in place to promote academic integrity in your institution?
Guest Blog Post from Kimberly Seeber. Kimberly lives in Bloomington, Indiana, US. She is a licensed elementary teacher and a graduate student in the Instructional Systems Technology residential master’s program at Indiana University. Her interests include technology integration in the K-12 environment and online learning. Kimberly is sharing the wealth of knowledge from Week 3 of the Designing an Exemplary Course MOOC focused on authentic assessment.
Instructors discussed possibilities of how assessments can be implemented efficiently. In addition, the instructors evaluated the advantages and disadvantages of utilizing pre-packaged assessments, open education resources and custom-designed assessments. One instructor defined an assessment as authentic if it is client or project-driven or if it involves service learning opportunities. Another instructor commented on the emerging need for concentrating on student competencies as opposed to knowledge transfer.
Last week, we were fortunate to have Dr. Torria Bond, a leader in Instructional Design for California Baptist University, an instructor in the CourseSites MOOC, and last year’s Exemplary Course Winner, as our special guest for a half hour live Tweet Chat. Many of you joined the conversation through the #MOOCchat hashtag, but in case you missed it, here are the highlights:
Q1. How has the #ActiveLearner (today’s student) changed course design?
A1. Distance learning has a long history from bible correspondence courses through mail. #moocchat
A1. Today’s @activelearner wants to be as engaged online as they would be F2F. #moocchat