July 31

Minnesota eLearning Summit 2015

Image credit: https://cceevents.umn.edu/minnesota-elearning-summit

Image credit: https://cceevents.umn.edu/minnesota-elearning-summit

Last week, the Academic Technologies Team, as well as several other members of SCSU faculty, attended the 2015 Minnesota eLearning Summit which had a record number of participants (+400). There were too many wonderful presentations to mention, but you can click here to access the many of them!

For those of you interested in OER (Open Educational Resources), please check out Lumen Learning (co-founded by keynote speaker, Dr. David Wiley) and the Open Textbook Library (set up by David Ernst, Chief Information Officer at the University of Minnesota).

Relating to some of our previous posts on game-based learning, our very own Dr. Plamen Miltenoff (Learning Resources Services) gave a presentation on Gamification and BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) based on his constructivist research in which he created mobile interface templates for gamifying library instructions and tested them in educational leaderships classes. For more details about Dr. Miltenoff’s research, please view his web page on Library Instruction Using Mobile Devices.

July 21

Learning to Teach Online

Photo credit: https://itunes.apple.com/us/itunes-u/learning-to-teach-online

Photo credit: https://itunes.apple.com/us/itunes-u/learning-to-teach-online

By Paul Keyworth

LTTO (Learning to Teach Online) is “a free professional development resource designed to help teachers from any discipline, whether experienced in online teaching or not, to gain a working understanding of successful online teaching pedagogies that they can apply in their own unique teaching situations” (COFA.online Gateway, 2015). Currently, I am participating in a MOOC of the same name via Coursera, which is still accessible if you are interested. It is also available freely through iTunes.

Award Winning Resources

The project is the work of COFA Online, part of the College of Fine Arts at the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Sydney, Australia, and is supported by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council Ltd. Co-creators, Simon McIntyre and Karin Watson from UNSW, have won the following awards for LTTO:

2012 MERLOT Award for Exemplary Online Learning 
Resources – MERLOT Classics (USA) 
Faculty Development Editorial Board Award - 
Learning to Teach Online 
McIntyre, S., Watson, K.
2011 Ascilite Innovation and Excellence Award
Exemplary and research informed use of technologies 
for teaching and learning in tertiary education - 
Learning to Teach Online
McIntyre, S., Watson, K.

Learning to Teach Online Episodes

So far, I have discovered a wealth of resources and pedagogical information relating to implementing and evaluating OERs (Open Educational Resources) and institutionally-supported technologies. In particular, you may find these LTTO Episodes to be a valuable resource as you plan your online or blended courses. The instructional videos are compiled into three categories: Context, Planning and Teaching,” “Case Studies,” and “Technical Glossary (COFA.online Gateway, 2015).


Learning to teach online. (2015). Retrieved from http://online.cofa.unsw.edu.au/

July 8

FREE Webinars on Using Brightspace by D2L!!!

The Academic Technologies Team recommends these free webinars for instructors who are new to D2L Brightspace.

For more information, view the PDF: D2LGettingStartedWebinars

Photo credit: www.brightspace.com

The MnSCU Special Interest Group: Learning Spaces & Instructional Technologies will be holding a series of free 1-hour webinars to get faculty who are new to D2L Brightspace up and running. Internet access available from home or campus – whichever works for you. Session size is limited!

The following sessions will be held July 27 thru August 31:

  • Organize Your Content (Content & Course Builder Tools)
  • Using Respondus Quiz Tool
  • D2L Brightspace Quiz Tool
  • News, Classlist and Email
  • D2L Brightspace Discussion Board Tool
  • Points Based Gradebook
  • D2L Brightspace Dropbox

For full description, dates and registration: https://mnquality.eventbrite.com


July 5

“Building a Game Plan”


Creative Commons "Wordle” by Rose PhotoAmateur (CC BY SA 2.0): https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Creative Commons “Wordle” by Rose PhotoAmateur (CC BY SA 2.0): https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

By Paul Keyworth

Following on from my last article on game-based learning, below is a link to a useful handout from Heidi Jung and Cheryl Bosarge’s presentation on “Gamification” at last month’s Brightspace Fusion 2015 Global eLearning Conference. They propose a five-step plan for gamifying your courses within a learner management system such as D2L.

Here is the link:

Building a Game Plan

Jung and Bosarge are gamification designers at Southern Illinois University’s Center for Teaching Excellence.

July 2

Advisement from a Student Perspective  

By Holly Evers and Carol Kuhn

If I were a student tasked to design an advisement tool for my advisor that allows her to track my progress and placements or advise me on next steps, all the while being able to keep (and print!) notes of our meetings with ease (the way my physician does), it would look a lot like the Advisement area of Tk20.

This is because Advisement in Tk20 provides faculty with a split screen where they can view:

  • Basic information about me (e.g. primary language, email address)
  • Details regarding any licensure, previous degrees or any certifications
  • Test scores – if I had any – (e.g. MTLE, GRE, Accuplacers)
  • Transcripts (minus transfer credits): current and past courses taken
  • Placements (e.g. field experience, practicums)
  • (most importantly from a student’s perspective), a NOTES section

Regarding courses taken, my advisor is not only be able to see each and every course chronologically (which, granted DARS does), my advisor is able to see them by term (which, from what I can tell, DARS does not do).

Advisement in Tk20 includes this ability so that advisors might assess that I took English 361 (Introduction to Linguistics) and English 473 (Introduction to Phonology) in the same semester. The problem being ENG 361 introduced me to vocabulary, concepts and skills that were critical for my success in Phonology. This mis-step I made could result in a lower grade in Phonology and a lower GPA overall. My advisor could see the potential pitfall and steer me clear, or if the die was cast, encourage me to keep going and seek out the aid of the professor.

Further, if I were a student tasked to design an advisement tool for my advisor I would desire ease of use in mapping my degree. Perhaps a split screen where the left hand side contains my information and the right contains the degree map, making the task of sequencing easier. Truth is: Life Happens. Perhaps I could not take the courses in the recommended ordered due to my work schedule, illness or a life event (birth, marriage, death). The information we discuss would be stored in the notes section, and we could talk about where I am and where I need to be. This would allow my advisor to be my mentor, too.

Having a notes section would allow my advisor similar capabilities as my physician (i.e. keeping notes on our conversations, recommendations, and other pertinent information, which would be available to another physician or nurse, if necessary). Sabbaticals happen. I am not the only one vulnerable to a life event. However, this does not have to result in loss of information or time for either of us.

If I were a student tasked to design an advisement tool for my advisor that allows him to track my progress and placements or advise me on next steps, all the while being able to keep (and print!) notes of our meetings with ease (the way my physician does), it would look a lot like the area of Advisement that already exists in Tk20!