iPad User’s Group meeting – June 2, 2011

iPad loaner program – any Dartmouth faculty interested in borrowing an iPad for two weeks to try it out, contact Educational.Technologies@dartmouth.edu.

iPad resources web site maintained by Edu Tech group: http://researchguides.dartmouth.edu/teachingwithipads

Short article published in eLearn Magazine on May 17, 2011 that focuses  on lessons learned in an iPad lending program out of the University of Cincinnati. http://www.elearnmag.org/subpage.cfm?section=articles&article=159-1

iPad can now project the iPad “desktop” (not just certain apps) – needs $30 Apple dongle analysis

Chris Levey: demo of showing students various audio tools via iPad projected through document camera. Lesson learned: document camera needs to have good resolution and contrast. Advantages: students feel more engaged when they can observe the interactions with the device (they see what the instructor’s fingers are doing). Projecting iPad via document cam is generally more trouble-free than connecting laptop.

Another possibility: wireless projection dongle. This means that iPad could be passed around to students (and still project to the entire class).

Stylus for the iPad – one recommended model is Boxwave, can be gotten from Amazon.

Notetaking app: Soundnote ($5); allows to take notes (via stylus or by typing) and records audio as well. Similar concept to LiveScribe pen, except done on an iPad.

Also available several whiteboard apps that generate recordings (recording pen only, not audio).

Doceri (free iPad app; also requires a desktop client which is not free) – app that allows to present and mark up classroom materials; saves recording or mark-up. Basically works like a remote control for a twinned desktop app.

Pro-prompter ($10) – turns iPad into a teleprompter

PDF Annotate – allows for “margin-writing” PDF annotation. GoodReader is another app which can do this.

Demo of AirSketch ($8) – allows to share iPad whiteboard or files via a web address (i.e. easy to send to classroom computer for projection); allows for mark-up (which is also shared out).

Splashtop Remote desktop ($3) – allows for video sharing from the iPad.

Passing iPad around to students for problem-solving (which is projected): much better experience for students than demoing solutions on podium computer or chalkboard/white board. Less threatening experience, allows for easier input from peers

How many of our students have iPads by now? Growing numbers (Bb had 4 iPad student note takers in a recent class) – should know more after results of Edu Tech survey are available.

Some schools are giving iPads loaded with course content to students: Rutgers; UC Irvine medical school. See http://researchguides.dartmouth.edu/teachingwithipads for links. These pilot programs seem to exist for iPads, not (yet?) for other tablet platforms.

Transformative potential of the iPad: the nature of the engagement with content can change. More hands-on engagement.

Killer apps! … the fun corner:

  • New York Public Library app
  • MOMA app
  • Virtual museum project (run by Google)
  • Concertina – but requires a skilled player!
  • Oacrina (better for iPhone)
  • Labyrinth
  • Bond – allows to explore chemical bonds, in a game-like format
Posted in Workshop | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Blackboard 9.1 update and workshops

Our Blackboard 9.1 pilot is off to a running start: more than 30 faculty members in a variety of disciplines are test driving the new system for their spring course web sites. Pilot participants are helping test all of Blackboard 9.1’s functionality, and are giving us valuable feedback on how best to assist faculty and students when the entire campus transitions to Blackboard 9.1 in June. So far, participant feedback has been very positive: the new interface feels more modern and up to date; it requires much less clicking; and access to needed functionality or commands is generally easier to find. Even the new blue color scheme has met with approval.

What’s been the least favorable feedback so far? I’d have to say it is how Blackboard 9.1 handles text pasted into the system from Microsoft Word documents. This has never been a very graceful experience in Blackboard, and continues to create some formatting problems. Blackboard is working on improving this problem though – and choosing a different text editor, such as Open Office, for the purpose of pasting text into Blackboard, works well as a workaround.

New in April: the “My Dartmouth Courses” module in Blackboard 9.1 will receive a facelift. The modifications will provide everyone with more flexibility and control over their course listings, which have grown long and unwieldy for some of us. The new module features a drop-down menu for term selection, and allows users to save their preferences.


Lastly: we have a number of workshops scheduled in May to help the campus community – especially faculty teaching during summer term – make the transition to Blackboard 9.1. Here is a listing – to sign up, please go to: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~workshops

What’s New in Blackboard 9.1 – Sneak Peak
May 3, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 4, 2011 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM
May 18, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 19, 2011 from 12:30 to 2:00 PM

Groups in Blackboard 9.1: Easier to Create, Easier to Use
May 4, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 5, 2011 from 12:30 to 2:00 PM

Using Discussion Forums to enhance Dialogue and Collaboration
May 10, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 11, 2011 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM

Assessments in Blackboard 9.1: Improvements and Time Savers
May 11, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 12, 2011 from 2:00 to 3:30 PM

Grade Center 9.1: Set-up, Management, and Grading Options
May 17, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 18, 2011 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM

Adding Course Content and the New Content Collection Feature
May 24, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 25, 2011 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM

Notifications Dashboard: Bringing Course Updates and Due Dates to the Forefront
May 25, 2011 from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
May 26, 2011 from 12:30 to 2:00 PM

Stop In for Assistance Setting up Blackboard 9.1 for Summer or Fall Term

Jun 20, 2011 from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Jun 21, 2011 from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Jun 22, 2011 from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM

You should also always free to be in touch with any of us to arrange for a session to introduce you to Blackboard 9.1 and its changes.

Posted in April 2011, Newsletter | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Welcome to Bill Garrity!

Bill GarrityBill Garrity has joined Computing Services as the Director of Academic and Campus IT Services, overseeing, among other units, the Educational Technologies group. In plain English, this means that he’s our new boss!

Bill’s background is principally on the library side – he has served Dartmouth as the Director of the Biomedical Libraries since 1996, and has led a number of IT initiatives for the College and DHMC. He is very familiar with the integration of library and educational technology resources and services, and with the research and teaching needs of the Dartmouth faculty.

We’re looking forward to Bill’s leadership in all things Educational Technology! Bill is eager to connect with Dartmouth faculty in all of the divisions – so be on the lookout for him as he is making the rounds! Please join us in welcoming Bill and, if you’re in Baker-Berry, please stop by to say hello – Bill’s office is in Berry 179E.

Posted in April 2011, Newsletter | Leave a comment

Smart Classroom Remote Assistance

by Andrew Faunce

Despite all best efforts, technology problems may occur during class.  Something in the AV system may not work, or you may forget a critical step for getting your material on the video screen.  Typically you would call the posted troubleshooting number (6-1155) and a Classroom Technology Services (CTS) technician would be dispatched to the site quickly.  While this “sneaker-net” approach is generally satisfactory, a faster response is available in most smart classrooms.

The CTS operator answering the trouble line can launch an application to remotely control the smart classroom’s AV system.  A virtual version of the touch panel you have at the lectern can be used by our operator to observe your button presses and guide you to success or to take control of the AV system and resolve the problem directly.  To take advantage of remote assistance, you will need to make the call from the classroom and remain on the line to provide feedback as the issue is being resolved.  Engaging a student or staff member back at the office to report the problem for you, while possibly helpful in other ways, doesn’t provide the feedback we need to resolve the problem remotely.

For problems that can’t be resolved remotely, CTS will send the next available technician to the classroom.  Remote assistance is staffed weekdays through 4pm when classes are in session.  Most smart classrooms have campus phones, and we are working to extend service to the remaining rooms.

Posted in April 2011, Newsletter | Tagged | Leave a comment

Smartpens? Smartpens!

This Spring term’s “Teaching with Technology” at DCAL (Tuesday, May 17, 12:00 – 1:30 PM) will be a special edition session, with a focus on Smartpens. What are Smartpens? About the size of a regular pen, Smartpens are regular ink pens which can also record audio and digitize the user’s handwriting, when used with special paper. The end result is a digital file of any notes taken, which is cross-indexed with the audio recorded during the note-taking session. When reviewing the notes, clicking anywhere within the notes will bring up the audio that was recorded at that point of the note taking. This is a great way to review notes which made sense to the note-taker when they were taken, but which seem cryptic later on. It’s also possible to replay Smartpen recordings from start to finish – which makes the Smartpen a great tool for recording hand-written explanations with a voice-over.

Our session will feature Jon Kull (Chemistry), who is using Smartpens to create course materials; Joe BelBruno (Chemistry), who has been using Smartpens with his students in a aleb setting to record and share lab results; Andy Van Schaak (Vanderbilt University and Senior Science Advisor, LiveScribe); and some Dartmouth students who are using Smartpens.

Lunch will be provided for this session. To sign up for the May 17 session, , or for any of the other workshops and events sponsored by DCAL, visit: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~dcal/workshops/index.html

To participate in a future TWIT as a presenter, e-mail barbara.knauff@dartmouth.edu

Posted in April 2011, Newsletter | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

From the Library: A Familiar Face in the Jones Media Center

by Anthony Helm, Head of Digital Media and Library Technologies

Anthony HelmI’d like to begin by saying, “Welcome from the Jones Media Center”! Many of you know me from my prior role in the Arts & Humanities Resource Center or from previous newsletters. You may have even received an email from Barbara Knauff describing my move to the Library, where I am now Head of Digital Media and Library Technologies. Although I’m no longer in Bartlett Hall, I am looking forward to working with the incredible staff here at the JMC and with friends, old and new, throughout the Arts & Sciences here at Dartmouth.

Whereas the Educational Technologies Group is largely a support site for faculty, the Jones Media Center serves the needs of the broader campus, supporting Dartmouth’s faculty, students, staff and alumni by “providing facilities, collections and expertise for researching, viewing and producing a wide range of media.”

You may know us primarily for our collection of DVDs and VHS tapes, but the JMC offers much more than that. We have workstations for editing audio, video, and photos. We have loaner equipment–from photo and video cameras to audio recorders and hard drives. We host a collection of quick reference tutorials on our website and offer workshops every term. We can even help you transfer that dusty box of 8mm film to a digital format.

Need to make library audio or video available to you students online? We can help you post up to 20 hours of content per course (not just the 10 items you may have heard before) through library reserves and Blackboard. Please don’t hesitate to let us know what’s missing from our collection so that we can try to acquire it.

Want your students to complete a multimedia project as part of your course? We will partner with Educational Technologies and work with you to develop the assignment and then to provide the tools, facilities, and training you and your students need to succeed.

During the coming year, we hope to offer even more to the Dartmouth community, but we also want to strengthen our relationship with the Educational Technologies Group by collaborating with them to deliver services that support you, your students, and the mission and values of Dartmouth College.

For more information, visit us online at: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~library/mediactr/

Posted in April 2011, Newsletter | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Ipads in Higer Education – brown bag lunch

Join the Educational Technologies Group for our third brown bag iPad users group get-together. The meeting will be held in DCAL (Baker 102), on Monday, April 25, 12:30-2:00 pm. The session’s  focus will be on the iPad in higher education and its potential to impact the way faculty and students access the web, engage with course content, collaborate, communicate, and create. If you own an iPad, we invite you to share your experience with the device, favorite Apps, and ideas for course implementation. If you don’t own one, we hope you’ll bring questions you have about it’s potential. Bring your lunch – drinks will be provided.

To sign up, visit: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~workshops

And be sure to check out the iPad in Higher Education resources we have compiled at: http://researchguides.dartmouth.edu/teachingwithipads

Posted in April 2011, Newsletter | Tagged , , | Leave a comment