transparent curriculum

The Unwritten Rules of College

a grass-roots assessment project of 25,000 students at 27 institutions in seven countries. Results showed that a simple approach can yield big results. Making the process of teaching and learning explicit to students — especially those who don’t know what to expect

Professors who have signed on to the project consider three questions when creating assignments: what, exactly, they’re asking students to do (the “task”); why students have to do it (the “purpose”); and how the work will be evaluated (the “criteria”).

Social Media Tactics to Drive Traffic to Your eCommerce Website


  • Optimize social media posts
  • Share the right content
  • Use your reviews
  • Add social sharing buttons in strategic places
  • Use visual content
  • Interact with followers
    • Join groups
    • Build relationships with influencers
    • Host live chats
  • Be consistent
  • Start a blog
  • Use hashtags
  1. Be short and sweet
  2. Add tweetable quotes to blog posts
  3. Use paid advertising

SMS as Disrupter to Social Media

How SMS is a Disrupter to Social Media

Email and Social media as we know it will die out. I’m not saying this year or in 5 years, but they will. I honestly think you are going to see Tablets in office spaces more and hybrid mobile devices take over at work.

The Interface of SMS is well, shiny and nice and not so annoying like a binary like Facebook feed, plain Jane like Twitter feed or hyper pseudo-useful like a LinkedIn one. Visual social channels like Pinterest and Instagram have more to offer, a better interface, UX and actual social utility.

  • SMS produces engagement 6-8 times higher than Email
  • 98% of text messages are read
  • Only 22% of Email are read
  • And 12% of Facebook feed posts

By 2016, it’s estimate apps like these below have been used to send 2x as many messages as traditional text messaging form person to person.

A – Category 

  • Snapchat – 3.9/5
  • WeChat = 4.3/5
  • WhatsApp = 4.4/5
  • Viber – 4.3/5
  • Kik – 4.3/5

Disruptive Tech Trends

5 Disruptive Tech Trends That Could Dominate in 2016

Andres Cardenal (IoT). The Internet of Things

Tim Brugger (Big Data): In part because the world around us is becoming “connected” through a growing number of IoT sensors, mobile devices, and the world’s affinity for the Internet, the sheer volume of information available is already staggering.

Daniel B. Kline (endless payment): While subscriptions have always been a factor on the enterprise side of the software business, they’re now moving into the consumer end of things. The leader has been Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), which has managed to move a large part of its Office customer base into a subscription model. 

Tim Green (budget smartphones): Zenfone 2 from Asus and the Moto G from Motorola.

avoid plagiarism

Students’ Top Strategies for Avoiding Plagiarism

avoid plagiarism

more on plagiarism in this blog:

Additional ideas for students, from students

1. Be confident in your own skill and originality!

2. Take care when quoting or paraphrasing others’ ideas.

3. Ask for assistance. 

4. Check and re-check your work.

e-conferencing tools

LITA discussion regarding e-conferencing tools (online meeting tools) and browser problems related to them:

BlackBoard Collaborate: has difficulties working on Google Chrome and Windows 10 Edge browser, since they not support Java.

WebEx, Canva. Adobe Connect, Zoom, Ultra


From: [] On Behalf Of Tyckoson, Mary Ellen
Sent: Friday, October 02, 2015 9:51 AM
Subject: RE: [lita-l] Free teleconferencing options?

We’ve been using for years.  It offers a record feature that allows you to download the call later as well as a report of the numbers that called in and the duration of their connection to the conference.  Generally the call clarity is pretty good.  The only time we had a problem seemed to be on the end user’s side.  I think they also offer some free online meeting services, but we’ve never used those.  The down side if that they are able to offer it for free because they are toll calls (usually to some number in a sparsely populated area – at least one of the numbers we use is out in the Mojave desert.)


Mary Ellen


Mary Ellen Tyckoson

Library Program Manager

San Joaquin Valley Library System

2420 Mariposa St, Fresno, CA 93721


From: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of J. Patrick Whitaker
Sent: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 2:09 PM
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools


We have Ultra available – albeit in a “not quite ready for prime time” format (i.e. no recording, polling, etc.). We can assign it by course so some faculty are using Ultra for office hours. It’s much easier for students in particular.


  1. Patrick Whitaker, PhD

Associate Professor, Assistant Coordinator,

Center for Distance Learning

  1. Sargeant Reynolds Community College

PO BOX 85622

Richmond, Virginia 23285-5622



“Education is what people do to you; Learning is what you do to yourself” – Joi Ito


From: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Doug Kahn
Sent: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 3:06 PM
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools


We were told the release will come mid-semester and because we are in a system-wide environment shared by over 50 campuses, we will go at that time.  I would much prefer to do it in January.


From: Scott Robison <sarobison@MAIL.PLYMOUTH.EDU>
Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 at 3:01 PM
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools


I have seen Collaborate Ultra (briefly) and agree it is completely different (in a good way). Last spring I was told by our account exec that it would be available to us beginning of fall. Haven’t heard anything yet and I’m not holding my breath…  ;)




Scott Robison, Ph.D.
Director, Learning Technologies and Online Education

Co-Director, Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning
Plymouth State University

Plymouth, NH

“All courses are online courses; it’s just a matter of
how much time you meet face-to-face.”


From: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Covello, Steve
Sent: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 2:42 PM
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools


One thing to consider with Bb Collaborate is that, since it is Java driven, there may be problems for users whose browsers no long support Java (Chrome, for one, and I think Windows 10 Edge browser too?).


“Java applications are offered though web browsers as either a web start application (which do not interact with the browser once they are launched) or as a Java applet (which might interact with the browser). This change does not affect Web Start applications, it only impacts applets.”


This is not a deal breaker because BbC doesn’t run in a browser (it just downloads the starter app). But the subsequent error message could throw some participants off.


There is a an HTML5 version in the works, I hear (haven’t seen it yet). But keep the Java aspect in mind, as it appears to me at least (FWIW) that Java is the new Flash — moving towards disfavor due to potential security issues.


Thx – Steve


Steve Covello

Rich Media Specialist/Instructional Designer/Online Instructor

Chalk & Wire e-Portfolio Administrator

Granite State College


Skype: steve.granitestate




From: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv <BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU> on behalf of Doug Kahn <kahnd@SUNYSUFFOLK.EDU>
Reply-To: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv <BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>
Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 2:29 PM
To: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv <BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools


At SCCC we have gone with Collaborate – largely due to integration to Blackboard Learn and the excellent pricing the SUNY system received.  The interface isn’t the most intuitive for presenters, but works well enough.  We recently saw Collaborate Ultra which will be launched this fall.  The interface was ‘zoomed’ for lack of a better term.  It is a huge improvement, extremely intuitive and performs significantly better.  That with the Blackboard Learn integration makes any thought of looking elsewhere a non-starter for us.







Doug Kahn

College Assistant Dean for Instructional Technology

Huntington Library – L10

Suffolk County Community College

533 College Road

Selden, NY 11784





From: <Liu>, Christie – liujc <liujc@JMU.EDU>
Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 at 2:08 PM
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools




We are providing a sandbox type of immersive program for faculty here to explore features of different web conferencing tools. Any information about integration of Training Center in WebEx to Canvas will be greatly appreciated.



Juhong Christie Liu, Ph.D.

Senior Instructional Designer
Center for Instructional Technology
James Madison University



We become ourselves through others.” —Vygotsky


From: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv <BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU> on behalf of “Akter, Nafiza” <nafiza@NJIT.EDU>
Reply-To: The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv <BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>
Date: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 at 8:59 AM
Subject: Re: [BLEND-ONLINE] Online meeting tools


Currently, NJIT uses WebEx and I used Adobe Connect at a different institution; we have WebEx set up so that instructors can create their own sessions as they find the need. They are both robust but have their own quirks to them. Adobe Connect had a big learning curve for instructors. WebEx seems a bit simpler just to start but I feel like it has more audio issues when you do VOIP; it’s also very confusing for our users because you have to click on a button after you log into WebEx to turn audio on. That goes for everyone–presenter and participant, no one can hear or be heard until this is done. Even users that have done this for a while sometimes forget this part–I’d say that’s the biggest quirk about it.


I have seen a lot of use of Zoom recently, but I don’t know if it is quite as robust or permits you to do as long or large of a session as WebEx would.


On Mon, Aug 17, 2015 at 3:41 PM, Barbara Anderson <> wrote:

Our university is trying to determine which would be the best online meeting/class tool. We have narrowed our search down to Webex and Zoom. I was wondering if anyone, who is currently using these two tools, could give me some pros and cons for their use.




Barbara Anderson Ed.D.

Sr. Academic Technology Specialist

Roosevelt University

430 S. Michigan Ave, Room 380

Chicago, IL 60605

312-341-2061 is another great, free option, which also can be used for web conferencing in case you need to share a presentation.



Darlene Davis
Digital Asset Coordinator
Alliance Life Sciences Consulting Group

Facebook Oculus

Facebook’s Oculus virtual-reality division: Let’s not go crazy with the hype

The VR industry is at the beginning of what could be the next major technology trend, with the potential to change the way people live, work and communicate.