UW Bothell Learning Technologies Blog Rotating Header Image

edtech

Simplicity for International Teaching

main

Comprehending a new language can be difficult, but luckily there is a tool that can help anyone pick it up.

The University of Washington Bothell has been building a large and diverse campus over the years and provides hundreds of types of courses to its students. English language classes are even offered to international students as well. But how are these classes being taught? Is there a more effective way?

The answer is yes! And the Voki app is the right tool to use for these situations. Voki allows the teachers and students to make avatars that can be used to help them with their education. Students are able to design their own Avatars to speak the language they are currently trying to learn. A set of instructions can also be provided to help students understand the meaning of the words and guidance on how they are pronounced. That is only the beginning of what Voki is capable of.

Voki is a great program and has multiple purposes, speaking another language is just one of them. The best thing about Voki is that it is great to use in front of a large class, when one on one with a student, or even by one’s self when alone studying. It is definitely a strong tool and can be used to help students everywhere comprehend things in a different and technical way.

To find out more about what Voki can do and how it can be used, click the link at the top of the page and find out something new and amazing you could have missed.

Prezi Adds New Features

Have you tried Prezi yet? An old favorite of Learning Technologies, this online presentation tool is quickly growing in popularity as an alternative to linear slideshow programs. Just last month, they added three new features to the presentation mode that are quite exciting:

  • Screen Blackout – Need a break from visuals for a moment? While in presentation mode, users can now simply press the B key to temporarily black out their screen. Moving the mouse or pressing any other key will return to the presentation from there.
  • 3D Backgrounds – Users can now add layers to their presentation, creating a 3D effect. Watch the video below to see the feature in action:

  • Fade-in Animation – Content can now be faded in and out within frames. This is great if you wish to add a hide-and-reappear effect to your presentation. Here’s another video to show you how:

If you’d like to keep up with Prezi as it grows, check out their new feature log, which will be updated when new features are added.

Thanks to David Andrade at Educational Technology Guy for bringing this to our attention!

Back-to-School Apps for Instructors and Students

In the spirit of back-to-school season, onlinecolleges.net recently published lists of recommended smartphone apps for students and instructors. We’ve decided to share a few of their favorites–as well as some of ours–with you here:

(more…)

What is a MOOC?

The recent announcement by a number of universities on offering online courses for free and open to anyone heralds what some call as the beginning of a wave of MOOCs, or massively open online courses. Just what exactly is a MOOC and how does it differ from a typical distance learning course? The video below gives a good summary of how MOOCs work and why they are different from other models of distance learning.

 

EdTech Cheat Sheet

Ever wonder what the latest acronyms and terms used in edtech mean? Check out the infographic below the jump for a quick summary.

(more…)