Educause is one of the biggest educational events of the year, and this year’s conference was no exception. With many of our clients in attendance, we had the chance to collaborate with several educational leaders to present notable sessions, providing the higher education teaching and learning community with interesting insight and information.

One of the more memorable sessions focused on using social media within courses and on campus to better engage and communicate with students. Dionne Curbeam of Coppin State University led a discussion on how the university has used social media and mobile notifications from Blackboard Learn and Blackboard Connect to enhance the student experience on campus. Located in Baltimore, Coppin State University has more than 4,000 students. Its student population is increasingly mobile and technologically inclined and, as a result, university leaders have set out to engage students on their mobile devices.

To encourage more collaborative learning inside and outside the classroom, professors at Coppin State are using the wiki and journal tools in Blackboard Learn 9.1. As a result, instructors have been better able to evaluate group work and individual participation. More recently, Coppin State adopted Blackboard Connect for Learn, allowing instructors to send SMS messages to students outside the Bb Learn environment.

Tools like social media and SMS are important, as Coppin State educators have found that students seem to prefer those channels to university emails. In fact, campus administrators have even started to use Blackboard Connect to send messages to the university’s Facebook page and Twitter feed. This multimodal approach allows institutions to reach students everywhere, regardless of their preference.

As mobile phone adoption is quickly surpassing laptops or PCs, there is a growing need on college campuses to be able to reach student through various modes of communication. To learn more about how you can use Blackboard Connect to engage students on your campus, watch our online videos about Blackboard Connect for Learn or Blackboard Connect 5.

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