2nd Annual Northwest Regional Instructional Technology Showcase

UW-Stout is hosting the 2nd Annual Northwest Regional Instructional Technology Showcase  E3 With Learning Technology:  Efficiency, Effectiveness and Engagement<http://www.uwstout.edu/lit/services/instructional/nwreginsttechshowcase.cfm>  on Friday, February, 22, 2013.

Attendees will gain new instructional technology strategies in the area of Teaching and Learning from their colleagues from throughout UW System. Attendees will have opportunities to network as well. Lunch is provided with registration.
The event is supported by a grant from the Learning Technology Development Council (LTDC) at the UW System.

The Keynote presentation “What Instructors Should Know about Taking an Evidence-Based Approach to Multimedia Learning” by Dr. Richard Mayer  should complement the teaching and learning  work of our colleagues. Dr. Mayer is a Professor of Psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the author of 25 books, including Multimedia Learning (2009), Learning and Instruction (2008), and E-Learning and the Science of Instruction (with R. Clark, 2008).

Please share this information with your faculty, instructional staff, and staff, and encourage them to attend!  UW-Eau Claire hosted the event last year and attendees raved about the ideas that were shared.

Registration is FREE!  Please register to attend by February 14, 2013. <https://uwstout.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_cYd6zl8DFUIoyQB>  The event includes lunch!

Showcase website: http://www.uwstout.edu/lit/services/instructional/nwreginsttechshowcase.cfm


Oshkosh Pilots iPads for Teaching

In early summer our Learning Technologies Department, Brian Ledwell, proposed a pilot project that includes the purchase of (total) 15 iPads that are available for check-out by faculty. We chose the iPad based on flexibility and price.  The idea is to offer training for D2L, Podcasting or as requested (you get the idea!) with the opportunity for faculty to learn and practice at a time and place that works with their schedules. Additional applications have been assessed and offered on the iPads that are intended to encourage experimentation, fun, creativity and curiosity.

The second purpose for the pilot is to give faculty an opportunity to discover teaching and learning uses simply by having access to the device and the applications.  We purposely did not set rules for iPad check-out other than common courtesy of no longer than one month (due to limited supply) and encourage the use for at least one to two weeks.  Based on our own experimenting, we think that this time is needed to adapt to the device and then hopefully, to realize new uses.

The hope is that through personal, self-directed use, faculty will “wow” us in the creative adventures they discover that enhance teaching and learning, and surprise their students with unexpected options in classes. Brian also secured a prepaid card so faculty could request funds for purchasing iPad apps, and in return the faculty would write a review of the app and how it was used.

Feedback is requested from any faculty participating in the project so that we can modify applications and track whether the future purchase of additional iPads would be beneficial.  There are multiple articles in recent academic journals about the experiments and uses of mobile devices in academia, which suggest that in the future, mobility and education will be firmly linked.

We do not have any anticipated outcomes, as we do not want to limit the scope of the project. Simply by going through the process and engaging in open conversation, the potential becomes more exciting as we look forward to the educational applications that have not yet been discovered.

For further discussion, the contact person is Brian Ledwell  ledwell@uwosh.edu

What is an instructional technologist or instructional designer?

I was asked to address this question in a recent department meeting. I was feeling somewhat poetic when I composed my answer. For those of you who consider yourself an instructional technologist or instructional designer or one of the many titles that falls along this spectrum, I hope this gives you some beginning-of-the-semester inspiration (P.S., Jim Groom’s take on this is also a good read http://bavatuesdays.com/what-is-an-instructional-technologist/):

An instructional technologist/designer is . . .

adaptable: Everything in this field is always changing, constantly. We need to stay ahead of the curve, and quickly vet new products and concepts to confirm their effectiveness before unleashing them on our faculty. Our priorities constantly shift, we manage multiple things all the time, and we like it.

patient: We work with very smart people and very complex computer programs and processes.  Being impatient would be like playing with unstable explosives.

knowledgeable of educational theory (cognitivism, behaviorism, constructivism; Bloom’s domains, Maslow’s hierarchy, Knowles’ andragogy, Gartner’s multiple intelligences, Kolb’s experientialism, etc.)- We apply this knowledge both in how we train people, but also in describing the strategies and possible uses of the tools we recommend.

knowledgeable of html/web scripting languages (javascript, css, asp, php, etc.) for supporting, troubleshooting, developing, etc. various technologies. Deep down, most of us are nerds.

experienced in audio/video editing techniques , particularly as it applies to digitized content. Some knowledge/experience with A/V hardware, cabling, etc. is also important. And. . .

familiar with graphic design principles and able to manipulate digital or scanned images, and save them in multiple formats. Deep down, we’re creative too.

comfortable in a teaching, mentoring role. With our excellent communication skills, we translate technical information to non-technical audiences, and vice versa. We communicate in person, in writing, and over the phone with faculty, staff, technicians, administrators, and students ensuring that everyone’s needs are met and that projects are moving forward.

devoted to customer service – This is paramount to our positions. It’s what we do.

We learn how to do technical things quickly in a variety of formats and on a variety of platforms. We train, support, design, develop, troubleshoot, evaluate, inspire, counsel, diffuse, evangelize, and imagine. We get our hands dirty under desks and in lines of code. And we perch on ivory towers and wax intellectual with some of the smartest people in the world. We plan, create, and support elaborate virtual environments in which instructors teach and students learn. We like knowing that our services and skills have tremendous value to the quality and efficacy of teaching and learning on our campus and beyond, and we strive to give every person and every problem our full and immediate attention.


Fusion Recap – Part 2: Notes from UW River Falls

D2L Fusion Attendees from UW River Falls

D2L Fusion Attendees from UW River Falls

Dan Semi from UWRF says, “. . .we had a ball. We brought 3 faculty with us. 2 of our faculty presented as did I. I’ve been fortunate to attend all Fusion conferences and present at 8 of them!

Our faculty presentations were from Andrew Koob (Biology) “Strategies for Minimizing Confusion and Maintaining all Tasks on the Desire2Learn Course Site During Online Conversion”, and Kathleen Hunzer (English) “Desire2Learn ePortfolio: Show us What You’ve Got”.

I presented a lightning round for “Desire2Succeed: Training your staff for success” and also a workshop on “Self Registration and Special Courses – A Perfect Harmony”. Also both of these were presented as poster sessions.

Our faculty really enjoyed the conference. It was the second conference for 2 of our faculty and the first for one of them. They all learned something new and were able to network with folks on different ways to implement the tools in D2L with their teaching. From what I’ve observed in the past bringing faculty to the conference is the renewed energy around teaching with technology in our colleges. These folks get fired up and have found ways to use these tools to enhance collaborative efforts in class and develop rich teaching and learning experiences during the semester. These faculty also motivate others in their area with the tools. I get excited when I see this.

Since we’ve returned to work, I’ve received 3 or 4 inquiries from folks at other Universities who attended the workshops or poster sessions and wanted more information. That’s cool and allows the networking and sharing to continue after the conference!”

Fusion recap (with pictures)

San Diego. Spanish for “Saint Diego.” Home of one of the world’s premiere zoos, some of the nicest beaches in California, San Diego was the host city for this year’s 2012 Fusion Desire2Learn User Conference. Here are some photos and highlights from the University of Wisconsin System contingent.

Pics include UW folks relaxing at Coronado Island after 3 days of intensive conference at Fusion, Keynote Sal Kahn, and BB Collaborate Poster session by Leif Nelson and Dan Schrickel:

Thomson and Voeks Present LTI at LTDC breakout of ITMC (read the article to learn what the acronyms stand for!)

Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) is a lightweight integration to link external web applications into a learning management system (like D2L). For example, the UW-Madison eText pilot uses LTI to give students access to their Courseload textbooks.

John Thomson and Dan Voeks presented LTI and how it can be implemented at the Spring 2012 LTDC (Learning Technology Development Council) breakout session of the Information Technology Manager’s Conference (ITMC) in Stevens Point, WI on April 17.

Knowledge of the LTI standard will help campuses as they consider tools that they would like to integrate into their LMS.

The presentation slides below cover:

  • how LTI works,
  • its security model,
  • some of the tools that are available now
  • considerations for data stewardship and identity/access policies


Official list of tools: http://www.imsglobal.org/cc/alltools

LTI and Shibboleth: http://www.dr-chuck.com/csev-blog/2012/03/connecting-ims-learning-tools-interoperability-and-saml/