Guest post by Gerry Praysman, Buzz Marketer, Brainshark, Inc.
Brainshark, a Blackboard Signature Partner™, won two of ELearning! Media Group’s Annual Readers’ Choice Awards for product innovation and customer satisfaction. After the announcement, Gerry Praysman, Brainshark’s social outreach expert, sat down with their Learning & Development team to answer the question: What are we doing right? Here are the “Best Practices” Brainshark wanted to share with their peers in the eLearning community.
We here at Brainshark are incredibly proud of our recent wins
at the Best of ELearning! Awards. Although we’ve been having a blast with this, we figured this would be a good time to take a short break from our celebrating and share a few tidbits of wisdom we’ve picked up over the years. Here are five tips that are sure to improve your eLearning and training programs:
Guest Post by Brian Nielsen, Northwestern University
It’s really exciting when you see students pitching in together to work on a class project. They’re excited, their conversation is animated, there’s joy in the sharing of the knowledge they are soaking up, and often there’s pride. Class projects don’t always go this way, and, for the instructor, sometimes they’re risky. If motivation wanes, if one or two students in the group don’t pull their own weight, a project can fall flat, leaving the teacher to pick up the pieces with a shrug, or maybe an extra test. But when it works, it’s wonderful.
Here at Northwestern University we’ve seen some of those great projects, and, we think, have had a hand in making them happen through our development of a new Blackboard Building Block that we’ve called Bboogle. We chose Bboogle as a concatenation of “Blackboard” and “Google,” a rather obvious play on the “Bb” Blackboad logo and Google Apps for Education, a service very quickly growing in popularity across the country. We use the pronunciation “ba-boogle” to signal to others the double-B, making sure that people recognize the significance of Blackboard as a partner in bringing this software into being. “Ba-boogle” does sound a bit funny, but the humor is meant to signify something too: the joy of helping foster collaborative learning experiences for our students.
Guest post by Misty Hanks, Coordinator of Instructional Design, at Morehead State University in Kentucky.
Over the past several years, Morehead State’s
online course adoption (both hybrid and fully online) has grown considerably. In fact, nearly every course has an online component and purely online courses grew from 17% to 28% during the last five years. With the success of our online program, coupled with a limited budget, we had to consider the most appropriate learning management system (LMS) for our University.
When we started the evaluation process, we were using Blackboard Learn 7.3. We considered either upgrading to Blackboard Learn 9.1
or adopting Moodle with the overall goal to find a solution that would help faculty create interactive and engaging learning environments while remaining cost-effective. We spoke with other institutions and faculty about their experiences using both solutions. The feedback highlighted the overall simplicity of the updated Learn 9.1 interface, the inclusion of SafeAssign
™ (the plagiarism detection solution) and the ease of the upgrade. I’m thrilled to say that we are extremely happy with our decision to upgrade to Learn 9.1.
Guest post by Harold Powers, Project Manager, University System of Georgia, and a member of the Ask Dr. C program, a free question and answer service for Blackboard users. Harold flies gyroplanes and is building a Zenith 750 in his spare time, too.
As an LMS administrator, have you ever been asked about what you do at work? It’s pretty difficult to explain, right?
Although responsibilities vary from campus-to-campus, I think many of us have similar workflows and, with that in mind, I’ve divided them into three major categories. This might, once and for all, help explain what we do for a living!
On September 30, 2011, Blackboard Student Services- Killeen, Texas
hosted U.S. Congressman John Carter
and his staff to discuss ways education technology is empowering students, teachers and parents in the state of Texas—and the important role Blackboard Student Services plays in the student experience at higher ed institutions throughout the country.
- Blackboard employs ~400 Texans at our Killeen Blackboard Student Services call center
- Blackboard learning technologies are used at 83% of all Texas higher education institutions and 21% of all Texas school districts
- 1 in 3 Texans who are in public education are using Blackboard technology daily