Latest & Greatest Technology Tips for Your Online Teaching Spaces


Blog Building 101: The Social Marketing Academy ~ iTunesU

Today I am listening to a free resource thorugh iTunesU called Blog Building 101. This is WordPress based, but he gives 15 minutes of why businesses are using blogs.

Top reasons to have a blog are to drive traffic to your website, basics and figuring out if you can manage your own blog.

What do you share? Anything…it’s a journal, it’s conversational, it is a conversation starter. You use this blog to “talk” to your clients/customers in a casual way. It also allows these clients to interact in real-time. Yet you can use it as a private space to collaborate with your research, writing and self assess what you really want to share.

What pages do you need? For UAA Staff & Faculty you can focus on a single blog page, but if you have an ePortfolio you can have a Home, ePortfolio, Blog etc., that go along with your content/focus.

Why blog? This depends on your goal and focus. Some people blog to share ideas and content they feel is relevant, think political content. Some blog to capture thoughts on content and ideas, but also to share these ideas with either a specific group, say other faculty or researchers in that area, or a team, like here at AI&e we have a team of Instructional Designers and I like to share information relevant to our profession and work with our clients.

If you are trying to gain credibility in your content area or research field you may want to collaborate and share more openly than if you are using your blog as a place to collect your works to organize at a later time. When you share your content, research etc. it builds credibility according to the Social Media Marketing Academy. But only if you are sharing it where your peers can find it.

You can use a blog as a place to produce pages or chapters of a book, pages or chapters of a dissertation, a chapter you are writing for submission to a publisher etc. You can even use it, set to private, as a journal of ideas.

The thing is, it is up to you how you use it.

That’s the beauty of the blog…it’s in the cloud, it’s flexible and it can be shared in so many ways.

Once you have established your blog, using social media to share it out to your readership is the next logical step, but that is really an additional blog post, which I will create and give to you all next week.



What ExAcTlY is an Online Teaching Space?

image of computer screen with instructor and chalkboardIn a few discussions that I have been a part of lately, including updating the UAA Student Fact Finder Blackboard information, it has come to my attention the definition of “Online Teaching Environment or Space” can be a little vague, or even misunderstood.

So let me clarify it for you as far as UAA Academic Innovations & eLearning is concerned.

All classes in the UAA Class Schedule receive an online course shell in UAA Blackboard. This means traditional, hybrid or online courses all have an online space for faculty and students to use during the course of the semester.

Why is this important to you?

  1. You can create online content that your students can access 24/7
  2. You can engage students in online discussions outside the classroom
  3. You can send announcements and information to students outside a classroom
  4. You can encourage students to collaborate using these tools and publish work to share with their classmates
  5. You can use the Grade Center features to collect, review and submit grades to students online. This thing is really a time management hero!
  6. You can track when students submit assignments and create quizzes and other learning modules that auto-grade.
  7. You can build it and reuse modules in subsequent semesters
  8. You can import publisher test banks and create unique tests & quizzes
  9. You can embed video/audio and other online resources for students to review previous to class
  10. You can create your own video/audio or online media and embed it in your online space

Is 10 enough? There are more really great things you can do using this space! Currently Blackboard is the learning management system at UAA, and students also have Google Apps for Education and other online options to use in their personal learning environments.

Need help with organizing and setting up an online course environment? Give me a shout!



New Study: Engage Kids with 7x the Effect | Edutopia

New Study: Engage Kids with 7x the Effect | Edutopia.

This blog by Todd Finley @Edutopia gives a great list of how faculty can add authentic engagement to their classes. Need ideas & examples for face to face and online engagement…give me a call!

(Click on the title link above to read the original post…it’s good)

Excerpt  from “Engage with 7x the Effect….

Engagement Method #1: Lively Teaching

Involves group work, games, and projects. The emphasis is on the students constructing knowledge, not on the teacher delivering it. Think social and fun.

Engagement Method #2: Academic Rigor

The instructor creates cognitively demanding tasks and environments (called “academic press”), emphasizing that students will need to work hard. The teacher also shows passionate investment in the content. According to research that Cooper cites, students’ perception of challenge is a strong predictor of achievement gains.

Engagement Method #3: Connective Instruction

In connective instruction, the teacher helps students make personal connections to the class, content, and learning. The power of connective instruction comes from the instructor helping students see the curriculum as critical to their current lives, their future, and their culture. Additionally, six instructor behaviors play into creating high quality relationships where, according to Andrew Martin, students “actually internalize the beliefs valued by significant others.”

  1. Promoting relevance: relating content to students’ lives.

  2. Conveying care: understanding learners’ perspectives.

  3. Concern for students’ well-being: demonstrating knowledge of students’ lives.

  4. Providing affirmation: telling students they are capable of doing well; using praise, written feedback, and opportunities for success.

  5. Relating to students through humor: showing that you enjoy working with young people (not as a class, as individuals).

  6. Enabling self-expression: connecting learning and identity by encouraging students’ expression of ideas, values, and conceptions of self.


Adding Active Learning Assignments to Blended Learning, or not?

After reading the BlendKit2014 Chapter 4 materials on how to merge active learning, blended course concepts and technology to my courses I felt a bit like this…

I think this will work…I hope this will work…I am confident this will work (I think?)

So I tried several attempts at putting my assignment ideas for a blended course into the direct/indirect/online grid, I found the linear format to be too strict. So I found myself drawn to the following Learning Assessment Cycle Grid.

Learning Assessment Cycle with Blended Learning Activities noted

Learning Assessment Cycle with Blended Learning Activities noted

This cycle is how I already think of learning assessments and planning cycles, and the technologies are built into the online assignments: Blog, Discussion Board and Wiki tools within the LMS system and scorm video tutorials available from the publisher and through our Atomic Learning license. These are using interior technologies for a 100 level introduction to computers course.

When teaching a higher level course with more theory I would use technologies like VoiceThread and Google Apps collaborative tools.


2014-NMC Horizon Report- higher education.pdf

See on Scoop.itPedagogy & Higher Education

The NMC Horizon Report > 2014 Higher Education Edition is a collaborative effort between the NMC and the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI), an EDUCAUSE Program. This eleventh edition describes annual findings from the NMC Horizon Project, an ongoing research project designed to identify and describe emerging technologies likely to have an impact on learning, teaching, and creative inquiry in education. Six key trends, six significant challenges, and six emerging technologies are identified across three adoption horizons over the next one to five years, giving campus leaders and practitioners a valuable guide for strategic technology planning. The format of the report is new this year, providing these leaders with more in-depth insight into how the trends and challenges are accelerating and impeding the adoption of educational technology, along with their implications for policy, leadership and practice.

Lara N. Madden‘s insight:

PDF version for reading.

See on


FYI – Microsoft 365

In class today a student alerted me that Best Buy was running a Microsoft 365 special something like $49.99 for a four year license for college students & staff. You might share this with students who would like to have a copy.

Microsoft has it here for $79.99 which is still a pretty good deal!





UAA Blackboard Upgrade for Spring 2014

Now that finals are over and your grades are getting submitted make sure to review Instructor Resources the Blackboard Updates and Course Copy Tips to get your courses ready to open up in January and get started!




Business tips for startups by proven entrepreneurs – Mixergy » Before going on a webcam, read this…

See on Scoop.itTechnology Stuff

Send this to anyone you plan to get on a webcam with, if you want them to look good.

Lara N. Madden‘s insight:

OH MY This is a GOOD ONE!!!! Thanx Dallas!

See on


Student Designed Infographics: Process & Products

See on Scoop.itPedagogy & Higher Education

Last year my students designed infographics for the first time. I enjoyed the process and the products. It was a fun strategy to teach my students crucial research skills while encouraging them to think creatively about how to visually communicate information.

See on


The 8 Digital Skills Students Need for The Future ~ Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

See on Scoop.itE-Learning and Online Teaching

See on

Skip to toolbar