There is no question that technology, particularly related to the web, is changing the way we teach and learn. Below is a collection of tools we think relevant and valuable in enhancing the classroom experience. TLC Staff are here to assist if you need help getting started!
Think carefully before you require any tool that is unfamiliar to students. Sometimes they resent having to learn a new technology if they don't really see the value. They also get confused when needing to use too many different tools in one class. It's best to avoid using a technology unless it is the perfect tool for the job.
An organized guide for tools.
"Gamification is the application of game elements in non-gaming situations, often to motivate or influence behavior. The rewards or the spirit of competition can spur students’ concentration and interest and lead to more effective learning. The use of gamification is wide-ranging in higher education, from extra-credit awards and in-class team competitions to complex multi-level schemes that can pervade a course." - Educause
"7 Things You Should Know About Gamification" (Educause)
"Teaching as Designing" (Huffington Post)
ARGs weave together real-world artifacts with clues and puzzles hidden virtually any place, such as websites, libraries, museums, stores, signs, recorded telephone messages, movies, television programs, or printed materials.
Seth Priebatsch's TEDxBoston 2010 talks about how game dynamics are reshaping classroom learning. (TED)
Calling all students, teachers, office heroes, trivia fans and lifelong learners! Whether you feel creative, want to learn something new or are up for some fun and competition – get Kahoot!’ing anywhere, anytime!
We already have a game layer in education - it's called GRADES.
But grades are so insubstantial. A letter in a database. The only physical representation is a boring piece of paper. Easily forgotten, added to GPA calculations, there is no jazzy sense of ownership when you get a letter grade. Wasn't it much more satisfying to get a GOLD STAR in elementary school? You had physical, visual proof of what you had accomplished.
Badges and Gaming Principles:
Storytelling tool you can use to make a podcast with simple animated characters.
Check out more on the Official Voki Blog for tips/practices from faculty users.
Make animated videos that look super professional in just a few minutes with PowToon. It's easy. It's free. It's totally awesome!
A site that let's you create your own online graphic cartoons.
SignUp is Free and also available as an iPAD app.
The ability to capture screen shots or screen grabs of your desktop is a really handy feature! You can quickly collect images to share or send for support.
Provide students an opportunity to demonstrate their learning of course content through the creation of short video.
Below are some best practices if introducing such an assignment in your course:
Consider for Video:
Video discussion platform.
"7 Things You Should Know About Social Bookmarking" (Educause)
Unable to view? Watch on Youtube.com.
Video Conferencing and Chats can be a great way to communicate with students and engage in course content online.
"What is Your Favorite Multi-Person Video Chat Client?" (Chronicle of Higher Education, 2014, ProfHacker)
At Otis College, we have a campus license to use Zoom.
Bill Eckert teaches at Otis College of Art and Design, in the Digital Media Department. Bill has been exploring the use of the iPad as a teaching tool for the past few years. Here Bill discusses some of the benefits of working with the iPad and the App "Brushes" in Arts Foundation Education.
We all know that our students are on a variety of social media sites (Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, DeviantArt, etc.). They use social media sites on a regular basis. If we can such sites to enhance learning, why not? You must decide whether or not one of these sites is appropriate for the topic and content of the course.
Such spaces are good for students to get to know one another and become more comfortable. It is also good for students working together virtually on projects. They find this to be a quick and easy way to talk to each other, whereas the blogs and threaded discussions are seen as something filtered through the course or the professor. So, it can be a casual and easy discussion place that enhances communication, particularly for team papers/projects.
"Facebooking the Past" (ProfHacker)
Screencasts, or screen capture, is a wonderful way to take students through a complicated process. You can record whatever is happening on your computer screen with an added narration.
Screencasts can be used for presentations, learning objects, how tos, asynchronous communication, and whatever else you can think of. They do not have to be as polished and professional as learning objects.
"7 Things You Should Know About Screencasting" (Educause)
Take a screenshot or capture a video of what you see on your computer screen.
Available in the TLC production studio. Quickly create eye-catching videos.
Start a web conference, just don't invite any participants, use the screen-share option, and record the meeting.
Tips and Tricks
Either way, practice, practice, practice. It may take a few (or several) takes to get the screencast done.
Blogging can be a fun and useful tool in a blended course. Some may prefer it to the threaded discussions as it is simple to upload images and videos and everything is on one central page.
"7 Things You Should Know About Blogs" (Educause)
"7 Things You Should Know About WordPress" (Educause)
Tumblr is what is commonly referred to as a photo blog. It's easy to quickly post and share text, photos, quotes, links, music, and videos from your browser, phone, desktop, email or wherever you happen to be. You can customize everything, from colors to your theme's HTML.
"Researching in Public on Tumblr" (ProfHacker)
Instagram is a social networking app made for sharing photos and videos from a smartphone. Similar to Facebook or Twitter, everyone who creates an Instagram account has a profile and a news feed. When you post a photo or video on Instagram, it will be displayed on your profile.
Wikis are the most useful to facilitate collaborative writing or organize projects. Wikipedia is the prime example of a gigantic collaborative wiki that millions of people write on.
PB Wiki is an easy to use free wiki web tool.
"7 Things You Should Know About Wikis" (Educause)
Video + Blogging
Combines the concept of student feedback, but rather than writing, students respond with a unique video they create.This video can then be embedded within a blog or in their Learning ePortfolios or in a class Youtube Channel.
Canva makes design simple for everyone. Create designs for Web or print: blog graphics, presentations, Facebook covers, flyers, posters, invitations and so on . . .
Media aggregator that allows people to post media artifacts which might be a document, a slide presentation, a video, or a collection of photos for community feedback.
"7 Things You Should Know About VoiceThread" (Educause)
The platform for rational debate. Empowering reason through friendly and open discussions.
"7 Things You Should Know About Podcasting" (Educause)
"7 Things You Should Know About Ustream" (Educause)
Free - Discover, Share, and Present presentations and infographics with the world's largest professional content sharing community.
A Mac alternative to PowerPoint.
Pay - Create web-based presentations with movement.
Pay - Create web-based presentations that inspire.
Free - With Google Slides, you can create, edit, collaborate, and present wherever you are. (Part of Google Drive: gdrive.otis.edu)
Pay - Nearpod allows an instructor to create an interactive classroom "powerpoint" presentation that students access on their mobile devices or computers. You control the pace of the presentation in the classroom as students follow along on their devices. Interactive elements can be seamlessly added to the presentation such as: videos, browsing websites, Q&A, and polls.
Engage your audience in one interactive presentation experience. Enable your team with their new secret weapon. Combine words, images, video, links, galleries, and PDFs to turn your story into an interactive conversation.