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Online Readiness- Are your students ready?

Online Readiness- Are your students ready?

Via Smartermeasure 2013

“e-Learning has revolutionized the educational sector, and has changed the way we look at knowledge and skill acquisition altogether.” – eLearning Industry

According to EdTech Magazine, students taking online courses made up about a quarter of total enrollees at higher education institutions in 2012, and of those, more than half were taking exclusively online courses. (Smith, 2014)

Summer session online courses, virtual internships, distance degree programs. The Internet has revolutionized the way students can gain knowledge and skills forever. However, while the majority of students may think the Internet is a no-brainer, there is an entire audience of students that may be daunted by even the most basic Internet requirements.

Schools across the nation have implemented Online Readiness requirements that students must pass in order to enroll in eLearning courses. Online Readiness is a tool that helps indicate the degree to which distance learning and/or learning in a technology-rich environment will be a good fit for the student.

Online Readiness requires students to answer questions and complete a few activities. It takes about 35 minutes to complete but students may logout and finish it later if necessary. Upon completion, students receive a detailed score report that will help explain strengths and opportunities for improvement, and it will also provide student success resources and tutorials. Students answer questions and complete activities to assess competence in Reading Rate & Recall, Technical Competency, Technical Knowledge, Typing Speed & Accuracy (Smarter Measure, 2014) Other activities examine student Information Technology Application readiness. Students complete tasks such as downloading a sound file, uploading a file, and engaging in voice and video correspondence. Students must not only examine their technological competence, but also their personal readiness to participate in an online course. Time availability, external environment and peer support should also be assessed before a student begins coursework.

For a simpler approach, The University of North Carolina requires prospective students to complete a brief questionnaire to self-assess their own online readiness. To view their questionnaire, click here.

Harding University eLearning recommends these Online Readiness platforms:

SmarterMeasure

Case Study: Middlesex Community College- Middletown Connecticut

Before SmarterMeasure was implemented, 6% to 13% more students failed online courses than students taking on-ground courses. After the implementation, the gaps were narrowed; only 1.3% to 5.8% more online students failed than on-ground students. View full case study.

ToOLS – Via Texas Wesleyan University

 

Both instructors and students invest extensive time and energy into their courses. It is important that students be able to see their coursework through- as they are paying to participate. Teachers need to know that their students are capable of completing the assigned tasks, and Online Readiness Assessments are a valuable tools for instructors and students alike.

 
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Posted by on July 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Jim Miller on Social Media – Colloquium Series

 

Jim Miller – Social Media

On March 27, Dr. Jim Miller of Harding University’s Communications Department presented in the CLT’s Colloquium series about the use of Social Media and its role in Education.  In the Colloquium presentation, Dr. Jim Miller discussed strategies for connecting with students educationally through social networks, while fellow faculty members shared their thoughts and experiences with social media.

Did you know a college student owns on average seven tech devices. They spend about three hours per day on social media networks. They check their smart phones 11 times per day during class. Good teachers understand they must connect with their students before they can effectively educate them. In today’s digitally connected culture, teachers should consider using social media to facilitate learning.

 
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Posted by on April 23, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

The History of Social Media

logo 7.gifDid you know that social media dates back to the 1960’s or that Google became a major search engine in 1999? I remember when the little blue bird, Twitter made an appearance and thought, well isn’t that cute, but does anyone really want to know what you are doing every moment of the day.  Think about the rapid pace in which social media has risen to become part of our daily lives.  Ten years ago, YouTube wasn’t around nor were iPods. “Sites that weren’t even around 10 years ago are now visited every day” (Bart, 2011). 

So here is my question, when it comes to integrating technology or social media into your classrooms, do you Tweet, Instagram, blog or Facebook?  To learn more about the effective integration of Social Media in the classroom, mark your calendars for Thursday, March 27, 12:00-1:00 pm to hear Dr. Jim Miller share his experiences with social media and how he challenges his students to think about the world in new ways.Social Media - A History

Explore more infographics like this one on the web’s largest information design community – Visually.

Social Media – A History was designed by Karim Benyagoub (@karim_designs) for Cendrine Marrouat

Bart, M. (2011). – See more at: http://www.facultyfocus.com/free-reports/social-media-usage-trends-among-higher-education-faculty/#sthash.SZRnoziA.dpuf

 
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Posted by on January 30, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Flipping the Classroom with Dr. Mumper

ImageBy now, you have hopefully heard of the flipped classroom method and may have even implemented some of the strategies in your own classroom. If not, follow this link for an in-depth look at the flipped classroom.

The purpose of this blog is to:

1. Provide a clearer definition of the flipped classroom method and how to incorporate this model into the higher education environment.

2. Showcase a model developed by Dr. Russell Mumper, Vice Dean and professor in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The Flipped Classroom

“In essence, ‘flipping the classroom’ means that students gain first exposure to new material outside of class, usually via reading or lecture videos, and then use class time to do the harder work of assimilating that knowledge, perhaps through problem-solving, discussion, or debates” (Brame,n.d.). Accessing content outside of class, provides time for instructors to question individual students, probe for misconceptions concerning content, and clear up incorrect ideas. With the flipped classroom model, students arrive at class prepared to work with their professors and fellow classmates on complex problems.

For additional information and applications of the ‘Flipped Classroom’, you can view the video produced by Pennsylvania State University below.   

Dr. Russell Mumper (Flipping Works)

K-12 classrooms have been the frontrunners in restructuring their traditional classroom models and adopting the flipped classroom method.  In higher education, classes are generally lecture driven, student class population is large, and the curriculum tends to be less student engaging than in K-12 education. But that did not dissuade Dr. Russell Mumper, Vice Dean and professor in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill from restructuring his pharmacy class from a traditional lecture based course to a flipped class.

Dr. Mumper began by recording 25 of his lectures, with echo360, which he will then repurposed in his future classes to allow out of class viewing. Instead of spending class time dispensing content via lecture, his students come to class ready to engage in rigorous discussion, peer research, and associated activities. To answer the proposed question, does the flipped classroom approach increase student test scores, Dr. Mumper’s research suggests a resounding yes! Dr. Mumper discovered that students’ test scores increased 5 percentage points as a result of the flipped classroom.  Dr. Mumper organized his 75 minute class into four active learning exercises: assessment, pair and share, student presentations, and quiz.  To read an interview of Dr. Mumper, conducted by EDTECH Magazine, follow this link: 86% of UNC Chapel students prefer the flipped classroom

unc_infographic_final-760

References

Brame, C. (n.d.) Flipping the Classroom. Retrieved from: http://cft.vanderbilt.edu/teaching-guides/teaching-activities/flipping-the-classroom/

 
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Posted by on January 10, 2014 in Uncategorized

 
Video

Teaching Online with Video

Fun with Video: Teaching Online with Video

Recently, I was blessed to be able to attend the 19th annual Sloan Consortium International Conference on Online Learning and it was such a wonderful professional experience. While there, I stopped by a Poster Session titled, “Fun with Video: A Practical Guide to Creating and Implementing Video Instruction in an Online Environment.”  The presenters were Adam Morad (Maryland Institute College of Art, USA) and Carol Abraham-Morad (UMUC, NLC, USA).  Adam and Carol both teach online and are heavily invested in enhancing the online learning experience through video instruction.  I was thrilled to be able to chat with Adam and Carol, sharing ideas about how to enhance the learning experience with video instruction.  Adam and Carol suggest that, “students need visual cues to understand the important points of discussion topics, concepts, and feedback. In the online learning environment, this can be challenging. Video instruction can bridge the gap and fill the void for online students by providing them with what they often miss from the traditional classroom” (Morad & Morad, 2013).

In several studies, when video programs combined visual and audio information comparing the visual and audio information in video, their combined use contributed to greater recall than either of these alone (Kozma, 1991).  According to Henry (2009), when a teacher includes video into their online course, instruction is delivered both visually and verbally, which is great since most students are visual learners.  When developing an online learning environment, attention to students’ learning style preferences should be considered and instructional delivery should vary to accommodate visual, auditory, and kinetic learners’ needs.

With that in mind, before you begin your online course, it is a good idea to assess the learning style of your students. If you have never performed a learning style assessment, the following is a link to a free one by Felder and Soloman: http://www.engr.ncsu.edu/learningstyles/ilsweb.html. After you assess the learning style of your students, you will be better prepared to determine how to engage them collaboratively. Especially in an online learning environment, collaboration helps students learn more effectively and deeply.  There are many valuable technology tools a teacher can implement to engage students with the content and have a better connection with their teacher online.  Of these tools, video is at the top of the list as it helps teachers connect with students, set the tone of the class, and provide clarity to complex concepts.

As I talked with Carol, I gained a better appreciation for how vital it is that online facilitators incorporate video into their instruction. Carol uses instructional video extensively in her online courses and shared one of the ways she currently likes best. She develops instructional videos with a free screen-capture device called Screencast-O-Matic. To learn more about this exciting tool, watch my interview of Sloan-c presenter, Carol Abraham-Morad describing how she integrates video in her online courses.  Thank you Carol for graciously sharing your time with me and contributing your experience with the implementation of video in online instruction.

 
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Posted by on December 10, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Center for Learning with Technology: At a Glance


clt at a glancs 2

Colloquium Series: Featuring, Tim Westbrook, Assistant Professor
Director of the Center for Distance Education in Bible and Ministry

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Faculty Technology Showcase 2013

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Faculty Technology Showcase 2013

Copy of Faculty Technology Showcase 2013 Video

The Center for Learning with Technology’s annual Faculty Technology Showcase has become the platform for faculty members to show their peers the unique ways they are using technology in their courses. On Tuesday, October 15, 2013, a group of faculty members gathered in the Regions room of Harding University’s David B. Burkes Heritage Building to observe the front-line between technology and education. The 2013 Faculty Technology Showcase featured 13 faculty members sharing their expertise and knowledge of certain technologies and systems, adapted to suit an educational or supplemental role.

There were many fresh and exciting technologies displayed at the Showcase, as well as traditional systems that are finding new, dynamic ground to cover.  Faculty presenters demonstrated their integration of technology with their hybrid, fully online and traditional course objectives.

Faculty who attended were privileged to hear how Jim Miller incorporates Social Media into his undergraduate courses, how Lisa Burley and the library staff can bring rich online  resources to Canvas courses with LibGuide, and how Jeff Hopper and his staff developed and electronic textbook for BNEW 313, featuring Dr. Bruce McLarty’s travels to locations around the Mediterranean, where the Apostle Paul visited,hoping to bring the course to life for students studying abroad.

Another technology on display was infographics, a visual display of complex data, that can be easily integrated in an online course to encourage collaboration and creativity. You can find infographics almost  anywhere, from the classroom to a McDonald’s bag. The new learning management system, Canvas was featured, with  Jimmy Behel demonstrating the use of media comments in Speed-grader and Tim Westbrook sharing how you can use the discussion forum tool to encourage problem-based learning activities. Steve Moore, revealed how he has been employing Echo 360 lecture captures for the past several years, providing his students access to to class lectures via Cavnas.

We would like to thank all of the faculty presenters this year who shared their use and experiences with technology integration: Amy Adair (Goodgle Docs), Alyssa Hepburn (Collaborative Classroom),Tim Westbrook (Problem-Based learning in Canvas), Gordon Sutherlin, (EduGadgets), Beverly Rose (Media Center), Connie Shay (Online Course Design/Infographics), Jimmy Behel (Speed-grader/Canvas), Jim Miller (Social Media), Usen Akapanudo (SmartBoard), Steve Warren (A/V Recording Lab), Jeff Hopper (ePublishing in International Programs), Lisa Burley (Library LibGuides), and Steve Moore (Lecture Capture/ECHO 360).

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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