Taking place just last week, the University of Washington Tacoma’s 2013 iTech Fellows program was an exciting venture in redesigning courses and classrooms for the digital age through the exploration of innovation in teaching and learning with technology.
As we have blogged previously, the use of technology in the classroom is a practice that has produced many benefits and opportunities for students and teachers. In general, digital technology, working in conjunction with the traditional classroom context, works towards the betterment of higher education. Colleen Carmean, UW Tacoma’s Assistant Chancellor for Instructional Technologies, is helping lead the way in developing innovative faculty development that guides faculty to a more innovative approach with education. As she talks about on her blog post on the iTech Fellows program, faculty were working tirelessly and passionately to reinvent themselves as instructors and educators, in order to effectively redesign their coursework to incorporate digital technology and other related tools. In doing so, they hope to further enhance the teaching and learning experience for students and instructors and illustrate a dedication towards the improvement of education for their students.
As the school year draws ever closer to its end, you may be getting more and more stressed about the final assignments, projects, and/or tests that you have coming up (as well as your plans over break!).
To help alleviate that stress a bit and provide you greater accessibility, Instructure has created free Android and iOS mobile apps for its Canvas LMS that many UWB instructors use. Whether you are a student or an instructor, these apps will allow you to access your Canvas account on the go!
Learning how to use new apps can always be a bit time-consuming though, so UWB LT has created new tutorial walk-throughs to help speed things up. To view them, just click here, or go to http://www.uwb.edu/learningtech/help/how-to/canvas-for-faculty/canvas-mobile!
Here at UW Bothell Learning Technologies, we’ve produced dozens of video tutorials to help UW students, faculty and staff find their way around technologies like Canvas, UW Google Apps, Tegrity and more. Previously, all of the videos could only be found on the site among the written tutorial pages. In an effort to make our video selection more centralized and easier to browse, we’re introducing the Learning Technologies Video Tutorial Library!
The library–which will also be continuously updated as new content is published–features links to all Learning Technologies videos as well as the tutorial pages where they are embedded (provided the pages still exist). The videos are organized by the tool they are associated with, which you can quickly navigate from the shortcut links at the top of the page.
We hope that this will make the videos on our site easier to find and more convenient to anyone looking for help or interested in learning something new!
In this month’s Provost Report at the University of Washington, “Putting Learning First: How Students Learn and How Technology Can Help“, the focus was on strategies for teaching and learning with technology. Although technology in the classroom is something that is fairly widespread, it is still something that needs careful planning and consideration. The report is a great guide of ideas and “best practices” when taking steps toward a tech-friendly classroom.
The report first mentions that a course shouldn’t be organized around a technology tool. The entire purpose of educational technology is to enhance learning through the use of technology…therefore, the technology used should fit in naturally with the course and there must be a purpose for it. All too often, instructors make the mistake of using a technology tool just for the sake of using it. If it’s not helping students learn the course content, it may simply serve as a distraction, or even hindrance. Therefore, it’s important to ask questions like, “what technology could be more effective at getting the point across?” or “How accessible is this technology, both in and out of the classroom?” This reminds me of a graphic Edudemic posted last week in their article “5 Features Technology Must Have Before Classroom Use“: