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LT Newsletter Winter 2012

Digital Media Lab: A Media Oasis

Students in Digital Media LabHave you had a chance to check out UW2-121? It is the University of Washington Bothell’s Digital Media Lab!

Inside you will find twenty-four high-end audio, photo and video production machines. The Digital Media Lab, or DML for short, is an open computer lab, a tutoring space and a digital media classroom.

We offer in-class workshops for a number of different software titles such as Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Pro 7 and Audacity. Students can come in during our open lab hours to receive one-on-one help with pre and post production filmmaking techniques, Google Sites and an ever growing list of media production related software titles. Finally, the DML is a cool place to hang out and have fun!

Check out the DML website for more information at http://www.uwb.edu/learningtech/dml121.

Wait there’s more! UWB’s Digital Media Lab is expanding! We have received four new computers, located in the Open Computer Lab UW2-140, for audio, photo and video production.  Also, a new 6400dpi color scanner will be installed in the DML towards the end of the winter quarter.

Student Perspectives: ePortfolios

UW Bothell student and Learning Tech Assistant Avalon Willows gives her perspective on ePortfolios:

As a student who has gone through two portfolio classes already, I have been around my fair share of ePortfolio frustration. Any UWB student will agree with me when I say that the process of compiling a portfolio, while technically easy, is very tedious. On top of that, many students just don’t “get” the ePortfolio; the reason for it is just unclear. This causes many students to have feelings of disdain towards the degree requirement.

This is unfortunate, considering that an ePortfolio can be a very useful tool for students. ePortfolios show things that a college transcript or GPA won’t. They showcase the hard work that goes into individual assignments, they reflect on individual learning styles and processes, and of course, they show what fantastic work you have the ability of producing.

Reflection is a vital part of the education process, and ePortfolios allow students to reflect on progress in the beginning, middle and end of their time in college. This allows room for improvement and perhaps the creation of set goals. Personally, when I was going through past assignments to build my ePortfolio, I came across a lot of work that I enjoyed reflecting on. Some assignments I had turned in in such a hurry that I didn’t even realize what great work I had produced. While reviewing other assignments, I often found things I didn’t like—so, I took note and used it for improvement in my future work.

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Blackboard 9.1 Close Up: Plagiarism Prevention using SafeAssign

There will be new online tools available for use once the campus moves to Blackboard 9.1 for spring quarter, 2012. One of those new tools will be SafeAssign which helps instructors prevent plagiarism by detecting unoriginal content in student papers. How it works is that an instructor sets up a SafeAssign assignment turn in area, and as students submit papers, they are automatically checked against the following databases:

  •  Internet – comprehensive index of documents available for public access on the Internet
  • ProQuest ABI/Inform database – over 1,100 publication titles and about 2.6 million articles from ’90s to present time, updated weekly
  • Institutional document archives – consists of all papers submitted to SafeAssign by users in their respective institutions
  • Global Reference Database – containing papers that were volunteered by students from Blackboard client institutions to help prevent cross-institutional plagiarism.

Once papers are turned in, instructors will get a report back within a couple of days on each paper. You can view a sample report to get an idea of what you can expect if you use SafeAssign. You can also view other anti-plagiarism resources on Learning Technologies’ plagiarism web page.

As a reminder, all Blackboard courses with all of their content except for 2007-08 academic courses will be moved to Blackboard 9.1 starting Tuesday, March 20 at 6 PM. The 2007-08 courses will be archived (not deleted). You’ll have access to a test version of Blackboard 9.1 starting February 16. Learning Technologies has created a video that highlights the changes. There are also UW Bothell web tutorials available, and Learning Technologies will provide training sessions later in the quarter.

Developing Effective Learning Goals for Hybrid and Face-to-Face Classes

Having good course learning goals are essential for not only developing effective hybrid classes but for teaching courses in any format whether face-to-face, hybrid and online.

Essentially, learning goals answer the question of what a student will have learned.

For students, learning goals help to illuminate what’s important in a course and make it easier to reflect on their learning at the end of a course. This learning roadmap is especially important for students who are taking a hybrid course since there is more out-of-classroom learning which can sometimes lead to miscommunication.

For faculty, learning goals can help structure a course and make it easier to determine what will be evaluated throughout the course. Course-level goals can also be used to create learning goals for modules or units within a course.

So what goes into creating a good learning goal?

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UW Bothell Faculty Members Experiment with Tegrity

UPDATE (2/13/2012): Dr. Kim Williams-Guillén reports that her class attendance remains at 90 percent, even with the availability of the recordings.

“Even though I have all the lectures posted on Tegrity I have been averaging above 90% attendance rate for the quarter, so it’s not like all the students abandoned ship once the lectures went online!  Partly that is because we actually do a lot of activities and group work in class that Tegrity is (not yet, at least) able to capture,Williams-Guillén wrote.

Since the Tegrity lecture capture system arrived on campus Winter quarter, Dr. Carol Leppa, Interim Director and Professor of Nursing, Dr. Kim Williams-Guillén, Acting Assistant Professor in Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, and Dr. Robert Turner, Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Arts and Science, have all made forays into using the technology and all report positive results.

Tegrity is lecture capture software that allows instructors to capture video of themselves, audio of their voice and computer screen activity, such as Web browsing or PowerPoint presentation slides. Lectures (construe this term broadly) can be captured as they take place in front of a room of students or privately in one’s office as a way to create a video lecture for students to view outside of class.*

[Note: if you are interested in learning more about Tegrity as an instructional tool, contact Learning Technologies at learningtech@uwb.edu.]

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