Blackboard Mobile has successfully entered the German higher education market with the launch of RUB Mobile, a Blackboard app developed specifically for Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB). With approximately 34,000 students total, RUB is not only one of Germany’s largest universities, but also one of Germany’s strongest research universities that have made it to the final round of Germany’s Excellence Initiative in 2007 and 2011. The RUB Mobile app will officially be launched during the RUB Mobile Day taking place on campus on 22 November 2011, an event organized by RUB intended to introduce the RUB Mobile app to students and staff. RUB came up with a number of promotional activities for the launch. The RUB app will be promoted by means of promotional teams awaiting students and staff at the main entrances of subway and bus stations leading to the campus, easily recognizable by their red RUB Mobile t-shirts with the QR-code for the official RUB Mobile website printed on them. Posters, table tents, postcards, press releases and radio interviews, tweets, Blackboard giveaways and a Facebook fanpage are a part of the promotional activities. In addition, Blackboard and the Ruhr-Universität Bochum are jointly organizing a contest among RUB students and staff in which contestants are challenged to unleash their creativity. It is an ideas competition in which contestants have to demonstrate how RUB Mobile supports teaching and learning, anytime anywhere. Contest submissions will be in the form of a video/animation, design/illustration, or photo. The judges, consisting of both Blackboard and RUB representatives, will award the top three submissions with great prizes.
In the run-up to the Online Educa Berlin, Blackboard is planning a symposium for 29 November 2011 from 10:30-17:00 titled «What students in the digital age demand: educational quality and innovative services». The symposium is a full-day pre-conference cross-solution event focused on the DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) with both client and Blackboard presentations. As a result of this focus, the great majority of the presentations will be in German.
We recently launched the Blackboard Mobile Strategy Series comprising of three online interactive sessions to help institutions develop their own mobile strategy. The series offeres an overview of the current status of mobile usage amongst students and showcases the possibilities that mobile offers to enrich teaching, learning, and campus life. We tapped into resources from the Blackboard Mobile team and were also helped by Jake Gannon from the University of Liverpool.
Combining face-to-face teaching with online activities can be a challenging task. So, we partnered with Dr. Richard Walker, the Director of e-Learning at The University of York to develop an interactive series of presentations on Blended Learning. The sessions tap into Dr. Walker’s experience in creating and delivering high quality, blended learning courses at The University of York. They begin with a basic introduction on the definitions and design principles of blended learning, and move through to designing your own course with instruction on pathways and planning tools. The final session outlines how to deliver a blended course including resource preparation as well as supporting and evaluating student learning. These sessions are ideal for lecturers, instructors, course designers or anyone involved with the delivery or quality learning experiences in blended courses. All of these sessions are free and can be accessed here >>