Welcome to the sixth edition of the Distance Learning Faculty Newsletter! We would like to offer you some new information about our latest online teaching and learning initiatives. Enjoy this newsletter issue!
Emily Hart, School of Communications and Theater Student and
Dr. Dominique Kliger, Asst. V.P., Program Director, E-Newsletter Editors
A Welcome to our new staff member!
This is a new and exciting year for the Distance Learning and
Summer Programs. In the Spring 2011 semester, the office welcomed a new member, Carly Haines, as our Technical Support Specialist. By having Carly on board, we are able to promote more online teaching and learning assistance to you and to your students. We invite you to view Carly's interview and learn about the different ways that she is using Blackboard Collaborate (formerly known as WIMBA) tools and about the training sessions that she is conducting for faculty and students.
Carly has received her Master's Degree from Temple's School of Communication and Theater and is an Adjunct Faculty Member for the Fox School of Business and Management.
Click on the image above to start this video.
In an effort to keep up with the changing technology, universities are turning to new platforms and developing content to be accessed from students' cell phones and other handheld devices. Schools are making their websites more mobile-friendly, as well as creating ‘apps’. Now you can “Tap into Temple”, using TUmobile! This app provides students with convenient access to information on the go. The new initiative was created for smartphones, such as the Android, the iPhone, and soon the Blackberry. Features of this app include a campus map, access to the library catalog, and calendar of events. Students can stay in the loop about the latest Temple news and athletic scores. A feature that can help students with study scheduling is the ‘TECH Center Status’, which shows available spots at the TECH Center. These are just some of the features that are currently available for the app—more is on the way! Some other universities who have created mobile websites are Miami University and Ohio State University. As we see the benefits of these applications, we think that more universities will soon be adapting to the use of mobile technology. This in turn will allow students to feel connected from wherever they are. For more information on this application, or to download, you can visit: http://www.temple.edu/cs/tumobile/
Interview: Sheri Stahler, Assoc. V.P. Computer Services
We spoke with Sheri Stahler, Associate Vice President, Computer Services, about the TUmobile application, and its expected upgrades for the future.
You can view the interview by clicking here.
This initiative has received collaboration from the Library, Schools and Colleges, Creative Services and many Computer Services staff members. According to Sheri Stahler, Josh Wharton did a great job of ensuring that the apps worked seamlessly within Sungard's mobile framework and Jerry Hinkle was terrific as head of this project.
Wimba was acquired by Blackboard and it is now known as Blackboard Collaborate.
Join our Faculty Virtual Coffee Hour sessions to learn and share new tips about assisting online students to success in this learning environment.
The virtual coffee hours are held every Thursday from noon to 1pm.
To join, simply visit This Liveclassroom Link.
You can also join
the room via telephone by calling (201)-549-7592 and entering 15915387 as a pin number. No
login id and passwords are needed to join this live
Remember to let your students know that they can join one of our Student Coffee Hour sessions, before the semester begins, to test their audio and video settings and experience the liveclassroom features.
Technology Day Event
In the spring semester 2011, many of our Distance Learning and Summer Program faculty members had the opportunity to partake in Temple's TLTR-2 Technology Day. The keynote speaker for this event was Steve Gilbert, the President of the National TLT Group. Gilbert spoke on behalf of an organization which strives to always learn more about utilizing new technologies in the classroom. Gilbert's message was simple: FISE: Frugal Innovations for Student Engagement. In other words the National TLT Groups wishes to find new technologies that can help students engage in learning while at the same time not having to worry about cost. Two examples of new innovations which are free: Prezi and Jing were presented by different faculty members. Prezi is easy to use, it is interactive and can be used to demonstrate certain lecture facts and information. Setting up a Prezi account is free and there are many video tutorials available also free of charge and online. Jing allows a presenter to create a brief video presentation with efficiency and ease. It is also a free tool. Gilbert's concluding message was very interesting: .."when it comes to new ways of learning, technology is right there with you, therefore it is important for faculty as well as for students to engage in these new ways and embrace any new type of technology tool which is free, innovative, and engaging".
The Technology Day Event was sponsored by Temple's Teaching, Learning, and Technology Roundtable - TLTR-2. The Faculty Herald's recent article about it is available online.
Online Teaching Circe
Cara Eckenrode, former student worker, had a chance to virtually interview Professor Alistair Howard, Political Science Faculty Member. Professor Howard recently participated in the TLTR-2 mentorship program and is also a member of the Online Teaching Circle, which stems from the collaboration of the Distance Learning Program, General Education, and the Teaching and Learning Center.
Prof. Howard talks about his view about online learning, what it can bring to education and he shares his thoughts about the changes that online teaching can bring to future faculty and students.
Click on the image above to view this interview.
Instructional videos about Blackboard Collaborate
In order to make it easier for you to incorporate new technologies into your existing online course, Carly Haines created a series of video tutorials which describe many interactive strategies for you to adopt and hopefully turn your online students' online experiences more engaging.
Library Research Guides
For many professors, it is important to present their students with a basic outline of course readings or any supplemental readings such as articles and videos. To make this process easier for the students to find, Temple's Library has been developing multiple Subject Research Guides. With this feature, faculty members, in collaboration with a Librarian, can create a page of the books and readings which they require their students to read during the course/program. This process can greatly increase the organization of the course material and benefit not only the students but the faculty as well. To get a better idea of what the research guide is like, go to Temple University's Library page, and click on "Research Guides" at the top right hand corner of the page. From there, you will be able to preview different styles of Subject Library Guides. Here is a screen shot of a research guide created for the Anthropology Department.
Upcoming News and Events:
The Distance Learning Program is pleased to share that we are developing a 20 hour Virtual Teaching Certificate Program to assist faculty members who are new to online teaching strategies, but would like to start teaching online and hybrid courses in future semesters, to expand their knowledge on topics such as:
1. When to adopt synchronous versus asynchronous class activities
2. How to choose from the vast array of online technologies available at Temple for online teaching
3. Understand how students behave, and learn in the online learning environment
4. How to create online course assessment activities
5. Utilizing social media
6. Best practices to engage online students
7. Items to include in online course syllabus
8. Online course design
9. Teaching strategies best practices
10.Hands on practice with virtual learning environments
This program will be ready in the Fall. For more information about it or to contribute ideas for it, please contact Dominique Kliger by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or via telephone: (215) 204-3154.
information about NUTN and the conference visit www.nutn.org/virtual
At this event, Prof. Catherine Schifter and Temple's Distance Learning Program will be receiving the Honorable Mention for the NUTN 2011 Shirley Davis Award for Excellence in Synchronous Distance Learning.
Educause is always offering great information about classroom technology. Mark this event on your calendar, since it is taking place right here in Philadelphia this time!
Pennsylvania Distance Learning Association (PADLA) - www.padla.org