If you’re one of the professors who have moved some, or all, of your courses online, there is a new, innovative technology available to use at USF St. Petersburg: it’s called the Lightboard. A Lightboard is similar to a white board. The Lightboard is made of glass and the professor writes facing the audience, versus having their back towards the audience.
In an online environment, it is important to build personal connections with your students. The Lightboard is a great tool for building personal connections because students are seeing your face throughout the video.
How does it work?
No, you don’t need to worry about learning how to write backwards. Using a simple video tool in post-production, we are able to take everything written on the Lightboard and flip the content horizontally.
Above are the production and post-production images, courtesy of a Spanish professor at USFSP: The left side is the original image, while the right side is the flipped image which is done in post-production.
USFSP has used the Lightboard to film various subject matters including Spanish, French, Teaching Elementary Math, and Educational Leadership.
Best practices for filming a video using the Lightboard:
Plan your talk for about five minutes or enough to fill the board.
Plan your lecture ahead of recording. Be prepared to write from the beginning to the end of a lecture because erasing the Lightboard takes time and will be done after the lecture is finished.
Wear a solid color, preferably blue or green.
When writing on the board, leave a space for yourself so students are able to see your face.
Blackboard Collaborate, an upgrade from Blackboard Elluminate, is now available in Canvas.
This tool will allow you to host, record and archive virtual classroom sessions. Features include audio, video, chat, white board, web tour, document and application sharing. Maximum seating capacity is 250 people.
Engagement is a critical element of learning. If we can get people to pay attention to what we’ve developed or what we’re saying and engage with us, the content, and each other, learning follows.
Gaining and maintaining engagement in the physical classroom seems straightforward: If learners look bored or inattentive, we adjust our style on the fly or call on people to recapture their attention. But in eLearning, especially self-paced eLearning, driving engagement requires much more planning, monitoring, and, most of all, creativity.
Looking for some quick tips for effective engagement in your online courses? Check out the eLearning Guild’s new publication “68 Tips for eLearning Engagement and Interactivity.” This e-book is available as a free download and is full of ideas and suggestions to increase meaningful learning interactions within your course.
Coming soon to a Canvas course near you…. The Scheduler!
The Scheduler tool allows instructors to create appointment groups (collection of individual appointments) in the Calendar that students can easily sign-up for. The Scheduler tool may be used by the instructor to create appointment times for office hours or student presentations.
Log into Canvas.
Select Calendar from the top menu bar.
Select the Scheduler option at the top of the page.
Click the Create an appointment group button.
Enter the name and location of the appointments
Select the course for which the appointments are available from the drop down menu.
Add details to give your students information about how to prepare for their appointments.
Select the date and time range for the appointments.
Choose how long you want each appointment slot to be. Canvas will split your time range into appointment slots.
Choose whether students should sign up as groups.
Click the Save and Publish button when you’re finished.
It’s time we started exploring some of the tough questions on texting. The May issue of The Teaching Professor newsletter contains highlights from a survey of almost 300 marketing majors about their texting in class. The results confirm what I’m guessing many of us already suspect. A whopping 98% of the students reported that they had texted some time during the term in which the data was collected. They did so for an unimpressive set of reasons, the most popular being “I just wanted to communicate.” Fifty-six percent of the cohort said they were currently taking a class in which the teacher banned texting. Forty-nine percent said they texted anyway.