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.
Just because something is getting a sudden burst of attention, does not mean it’s a passing fad. And that’s what we’ve tried to prove about social learning over the past few weeks. (Ex: Myth 1 – Social learning isn’t new!)
So, what gives social learning this broad appeal and staying power? Multiple studies and stories confirm students’ increased immersion in technology gives them the experiences, relationships, and stimulation that helps them stay better engaged in their learning experience, plus these technologies are something they are increasingly unable to live without.
Social learning is not going away, and in fact, it will continue to be bolstered by technology and students’ adoption of it.
Our fourth and final myth busted here: Social Learning Doesn’t Have Broad Appeal
The following is an interview with Terry Patterson on how he super-uses LMS, Blackboard Learn. Terry is the Blackboard Learn system administrator at the University of Missouri. As a seasoned Blackboard Learn veteran of nine years, he started a blog called Blackboardguru.com where he provides valuable insight to other Blackboard Learn system administrators.
What tools do you use that quickly improve the quality of Blackboard as an LMS?
Building blocks are essentially extensions of the Blackboard Learn environment and play an important part in Blackboard at the University of Missouri. I use Building Blocks to connect Blackboard Learn to third party tools like Blackboard Collaborate, Tegrity, and Kaltura. I also use administrative Building Blocks like the Admin Console, Impersonate, and BbStats in my daily work.
Have you ever been on your way to tailgate when you realized you forgot to post a comment to your class discussion board? What do you do? About face, go back to your dorm, sit down, plug away and miss out on the fun? Or forgo the assignment all together?
How about neither?
What do I mean? Well, with Blackboard Mobile Learn, you can check grades, grab presentations and documents, even post on your class discussion board right from your phone. And, now access to the app is only a few taps away on iOS or Android.
The following is a guest post from Mark Radcliffe, Director of Professional Development at the not-for-profit company blendedschools.net. Mark has worked in various K-20 education positions for the last 10 years including working directly with students and teachers on technology integration projects. At blendedschools.net Mark manages the teacher development program including onsite and online professional development for over 10,000 teachers. Mark is currently located in Norfolk, Virginia, USA but is originally from Manchester UK. He enjoys the city and loves music and the visual arts.
I recently had the opportunity to participate in beta testing the latest release of Blackboard Learn . This came soon after I attended the Blackboard Calendar focus group in July as well as countless road map presentations.
The phrase that sums up my beta experience with the learning management system (LMS) is “improving can be greater than adding”. I’ve been using Blackboard for almost 10 years and I’ve seen a lot of changes in that time. I can hold up my hand and say that I was one of the Blackboard Learn version 9.1 whiners. I longed for the simplicity of Blackboard Learn version 8. However as Blackboard has changed, I too have changed [my mind].