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CIRT Newsletter Podcast

FACULTY SPOTLIGHT: TOOLS TO SUPPORT AND MEASURE COLLABORATION
School of Computing
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The ability to work as part of a team is critical for those in the computing and information science fields.  In fact, collaborating effectively is an accreditation criterion for  programs in the School of Computing and one of the identified communication skills for graduates in their student learning outcomes.  Until 2008, faculty used different reporting systems and collected different artifacts, each of which used different scales and rubrics, as evidence of this competency.  That made it difficult to aggregate the data and compare across years to measure progress.

CATMELisa Jamba, a senior instructor and advisor in the program, began researching options that would allow the program to collect these data in a stable and systematic way.  She found the Comprehensive Assessment for Team-Member Effectiveness (CATME), an instrument developed by a multidisciplinary and multi-institution team as part of a National Science Foundation grant.  The instrument is web-based and currently housed at Purdue University.  CATME surveys student teams to collect peer-based team performance ratings, and uses that information to generate ratings in five areas related to effective collaboration.  Based on extensive university research, the instrument was developed specifically to assess how effectively each team member contributes to the team and has been validated in numerous studies.

CATME uses a behaviorally anchored rating scale, which describes behaviors typical of various levels of performance in each of the five categories to generate the ratings.  Students rate themselves and one another, and the responses are confidential with behavior ratings generated on an aggregate basis.  Instructors can add their own categories and associated behavior ratings.  The tool also alerts faculty to exceptional conditions that provide information about teams, such as the development of cliques.  This allows the faculty member to conference with a given team to explore issues and promote solutions.  After a brief pilot, the School of Computing adopted this instrument and is now using it program-wide to provide valuable feedback to students and faculty, while allowing the unit to measure continuous improvement and track the progress of students across the program.

UNF faculty members report that the tool is simple to use.  The faculty member uploads the roster and can then use CATME Team-Maker, to generate teams based upon user-specified criteria.  The Team-Maker tool manages account creation and notifications for all student users.  It has the capacity to collect instructor-specified information as well as demographics and use this information to form teams.  This can be very useful in forming teams with similar schedules for meeting times, or, in a class with few females, identifying gender diversity as a high-priority in team creation.  Reports can be pulled down, and even shared between instructors, facilitating program-wide data collection.
If you are interested in using a tool like this for your course or program, please stop by and talk with us. We’ll be glad to give you a brief overview of the site and put you in touch with more advanced users.

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ACADEMIC INTEGRITY IN ONLINE COURSES
Deb Miller, Director deb.miller@unf.edu
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Academic IntegrityThere is a common perception that academic dishonesty is more prevalent in online courses. However, the literature indicates that cheating rates in online courses are about the same as those for traditional courses (Grijalva, Nowell, & Kerkvliet, 2006; Spaulding, 2009; Watson & Sottile, 2010). Academic dishonesty is a serious issue on college campuses, with student self-reported cheating rates in excess of 65% (Faucher & Caves, 2009; Novotney, 2011). A great deal of research has been done on the factors that contribute to these high numbers. Frequently cited are academic and financial pressure to succeed, wide acceptance of cheating among peers, ignorance as to what constitutes plagiarism, extensive and easy access to technologies for finding and sharing information, reluctance on the part of faculty to enforce student honor codes, and a societal trend toward collaboration.

Online courses do take place in a specific environment and context that must be considered in their design and in developing strategies to support academic integrity. As course developers and instructors we have an obligation to protect the integrity of the courses that are developed and delivered at our institution. I came to understand this in a deeper way during a presentation at the 2011WCET Connect Conference last fall. The presentation contains a passage from the UC Davis Code of Academic Conduct that sums it up nicely: “Without academic integrity, there can be no trust or reliance on the effectiveness, accuracy, or value of a University’s teaching, learning, research, or public service initiatives.”

Here are my own top three suggestions for fostering academic integrity in your online courses.

  1. Communicate Expectations
    Include an assignment on UNF’s honor code and how that applies in your course as part of your orientation week activities. Establish your instructional presence in the course and be clear and direct about what is expected.  This does not imply an attitude of treating all students as if you believe them to be dishonest, rather, that your approach conveys that you believe them to be capable, responsible and ethical adults. Research on cheating in online courses indicates that “people who feel more distant cheat more” (Adkins, Kenkel & Lim, 2005), so strive to create a sense of community in each course. The use of a signed honor code for assignments or as the first question for each test has also been shown to reduce academic dishonesty (Novotney, 2011). The subsequent action to communicating expectations is enforcing the honor code and pursuing violations when encountered.

  2. Design Meaningful Assessment
    Carefully examine and consider the alignment of your course goals with associated assessments. A course goal for students to demonstrate understanding of concepts by analyzing them in particular context cannot be measured well by multiple-choice questions. Here’s an example of an objective that can be better measured by discussion forums, writing assignments, or the creation of a wiki than by a multiple-choice test:

    Demonstrate understanding of the tension between social control and democracy through identification and critical analysis of legal doctrine, social philosophy and system practice.

    Generally speaking, objective testing in online courses should be low-stakes and mastery-driven. Think of it more as homework than testing. Develop a test bank (or use the publishers) and utilize test access controls, including timing and randomization, to give students multiple attempts to interact with the material and achieve mastery of important terms and concepts. This is also a good strategy to help students stay on track with their reading assignments, which will contribute to their mastery of course content. Be sure the weight given to tests in the final grade reflects the nature of the testing you use.

    Make paper writing a process, not merely a product. Requiring students to submit drafts along the way will minimize the likelihood of cheating and help students develop writing process and time management skills. Allow students to submit drafts using SafeAssign to provide another feedback loop and avoid plagiarism.

    Provide prompt and meaningful feedback on assignments so students learn from the experience and appreciate the value you place on the assignment and its content.

  3. Use the Right Tool
    There are a multitude of tools available to assess learning and provide students with feedback on individual and group assignments in and out of Blackboard- discussion boards, blogs, wikis, rubrics, online chat, and student media creation, to name several.  If you’d like to discuss which would be effective for your learning goal, please make an appointment with our instructional design staff and we’ll be happy to consult with you and make suggestions. CIRT also has a variety of books available for checkout on assessment techniques in online courses.

    When high-stakes testing is a critical part of the course or program, treat it as such by designing and using extensive test banks and proctoring those tests. This is often appropriate for programs whose graduates will be required to pass a computer-based test to achieve licensure or certification. Some options for proctoring in online courses are available on this page.

I hope this is helpful and would welcome the opportunity to continue this discussion; feel free to drop me a note or stop by if you are interested in doing so.

Adkins, J. Kenkel, C. & Lim, C. (2005). Deterrents to online academic dishonesty. Journal of Learning in Higher Education. 1(1).  Retrieved from http://jwpress.com/JLHE/Issues/v1i1/ 

Faucher, D. & Caves, S.  (2009). Academic dishonesty: Innovative cheating techniques and the detection and prevention of them. Teaching and Learning in Nursing, 4, 37-41. doi:10.1016/j.teln.2008.09.003

Grijalva, T., Nowell, C., & Kerkvliet, J. (2006). Academic honesty and online courses. College Student Journal, 40(1), 180-185.

Novotney, A. (2011). Beat the cheat. Monitory on Psychology, 42(6). Retrieved from: http://www.apa.org/monitor/2011/06/cheat.aspx .

Spaulding, M. (2009). Perceptions of academic honesty in online vs. face-to-face classrooms. Journal of Interactive Online Learning, 8(3), 183-198.

Watson, G., & Sottile, J. (2010). Cheating in the digital age: Do students cheat more in online courses? Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, 13(1).

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UPCOMING EVENTS

Mobile Video Production: iMovie on the iPad, Part I
Date: Friday, March 30, 1:30 – 3:00 pm
Location: Building 1, Room 1801 (CIRT Conference Room)
Participants learn to record and produce a short video, including titling using Apple’s iMovie software on the iPad 2. Participants who own an iPad2 may wish to purchase and install the iMovie software ($4.99) prior to the workshop in order to follow along with the exercises. Others are welcome to attend to learn more about this portable production platform.
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu  

The Promise of Educational Design Research- Educause ELI Webinar
Date: Monday, April 2, 1:00 – 2:30 pm
Location: Building 1, Room 2800 (President's Conference Room)
Please join us for this ELI- sponsored webinar and discussion afterwards. There is no need to register- we have already done so.  Session Description: Join Malcolm Brown, ELI director, and Veronica Diaz, ELI associate director, as they moderate this webinar with Susan McKenney and Thomas Reeves. The capacity of educational technology to enhance teaching and learning in higher education would seem more promising than ever with the cavalcade of new technologies that have been introduced into the sector in recent years such as tablet computers, digital textbooks, and serious games. And yet, traditional approaches to educational research and evaluation continue to show “no significant differences.” Doubts about the benefits of educational technology stem from decades of research agendas focused on establishing certainty in learning contexts where probabilistic knowledge is the best that can be expected. Real progress in improving learning through technology may be accomplished using educational design research (EDR) as an alternative inquiry approach. EDR involves intensive, long-term collaboration among researchers and practitioners to develop viable solutions to practical problems while also seeking to identify reusable design principles.
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu  

Mobile Video Production: iMovie on the iPad, Part II
Date: Friday, April 6, 1:30 – 3:00 pm
Location: Building 1, Room 1801 (CIRT Conference Room)
In this advanced session, participants learn more about video management publishing options and advanced editing using Apple’s iMovie software on the iPad 2. Participants who own an iPad2 may wish to purchase and install the iMovie software ($4.99) prior to the workshop in order to follow along with the exercises.
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu  

Blackboard- What's New in LO4 (Blog, Wiki, Podcast Tools)
Date: Wednesday, April 11, 3:00 – 4:00 pm
Location: online
UNF will upgrade to Learning Objects 4 (LO4) in May. This live online workshop provides an overview of the features in the new version of our Blackboard Blog, Wiki and Podcast tools. Participants will learn about the new features of the blog, journal, wiki and podcast tools, making activities available to individual students, groups, courses or multiple courses, copying activities to another course, and viewing and assessing student content.   
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu to receive session link.  

Blackboard- What's New in LO4 (Blog, Wiki, Podcast Tools)
Date: April 12, 10:00– 11:00 am
Location: online
UNF will upgrade to Learning Objects 4 (LO4) in May. This live online workshop provides an overview of the features in the new version of our Blackboard Blog, Wiki and Podcast tools. Participants will learn about the new features of the blog, journal, wiki and podcast tools, making activities available to individual students, groups, courses or multiple courses, copying activities to another course, and viewing and assessing student content.   
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu to receive session link.

Blackboard- LO4 Wiki Tool
Date:
Tuesday, April 17, 4:00– 5:00 pm
Location:
Building 51, Room 1201
This hands-on session will provide an overview of the new features in the wiki tool available with LO4. Participants will learn how to create wikis, make them available to individuals, groups, and course(s), and will learn about wiki settings and assessing wikis.   
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu

Blackboard- LO4 Blogs and Journals Tool
Date:
Thursday, April 19, 4:00– 5:00 pm
Location:
Building 51, Room 1201
This hands-on session will provide an overview of the new features in the wiki tool available with LO4. Participants will learn how to create wikis, make them available to individuals, groups, and course(s), and will learn about wiki settings and assessing wikis.
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu

Blackboard- LO4 Podcast Tool
Date:
Friday, April 20, 3:00– 4:00 pm
Location:
Building 51, Room 1201
This hands-on session will provide an overview of the LO4 podcast tool. Participants will learn how to create podcast feeds and episodes, learn about podcast settings and will learn how to use podcasts to collect media assignments from students. 
RSVP to cirtevents@unf.edu

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DIGITAL THINKING: USING IPADS FOR RESEARCH
Dave Wilson, Coordinator of Educational Media, david.wilson@unf.edu
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At the end of the last Digital Thinking article I wrote I said that I would be writing more about video assignments in this article. I still have some leg work to do before I can write that piece. Instead I’ve decided to write about using iPads for research. I think the timing was good, with the “new” iPad released earlier this month.

AppI was inspired to write about using iPads for research by an email on the New Media Consortium (NMC) listserv.  The email asked how people were using their iPads in their research and if they had any suggestions.  One of the questions that kept coming up on the listserv was “Why focus on iPads and not talk about tablets in general?” To me, the answer is simple. While the iPad isn’t flawless, it’s better than its competitors. It’s one of those products like Kleenex and Jacuzzi that become an archetype. Right now it has a 62% tablet market share (Kurtzleben, 2012).  The other question was “Why do I need an iPad? I’ve been doing research for years without one,” which is a really good point. You probably have a streamlined process for your research using tools that works really well. I want to be clear. The intent of this article isn’t to get you to change your whole process and use an iPad. It’s to inform you about the capabilities of the device so you can decide if it’s something that would be useful to you.

So, let’s look at the capabilities of the iPad. For purposes of this article I’m going to use the iPad 2, which is a little smaller and lighter than the iPad and the new iPad, and I’m going to break capabilities down into two main categories: hardware and apps.  

Let’s start with the hardware. The iPad weights a little over a pound, has a roughly 10” screen, and the battery lasts for about 10 hours. It has a camera and microphone. Both work well for general use. The iPad is location aware. For example, when conducting interviews, if the iPad has a connection to the Internet it can attach a geographic location to the recording if you are using an app with that capability like Bento. Additionally, the iPad has an accelerometer, gyroscope, and magnetometer that can be used to collect data with the correct apps. Disclaimer- I haven’t been able to find any information about the accuracy of the measurements from those sensors. Researchers have developed external sensors that can be connected the iPad, but they are not commercially available (Kuo & Dutta, 2010). Overall, the iPad is a flexible tool that’s small enough to travel with and has a battery that lasts long enough to get work done.

Now let’s look at the apps. I’ve talked to several faculty about their experiences with iPads. The thing that makes the most difference in how well they liked the iPad was whether they were able to find useful apps. There are too many apps to list, so I will try to give cross section that shows the range of possibilities. I’d also like to take the opportunity to plug Mike Boyles’ Newsletters reviews of apps. In the last edition of the Newsletter he reviewed Image to Text, an app that lets you scan printed documents with the iPads camera to convert them into editable files. In this edition of the Newsletter he reviews EverNote, a sophisticated tool for creating, organizing, and working with notes and other digital content.  Along those lines are apps that are useful for managing articles, papers, and webpages. InstaPaper and Read it Later are services that lets you save a webpages on any computer or device to read later on your iPad. If you use Zotero to manage your references the ZotPad app lets you access them on your iPad. Zotpad stores the PDFs on the iPad and it has a built in PDF viewer, so it’s great for quickly accessing an article. Even without a connection to the Internet, ZotPad is great for reading PDFs (Sample, 2012) but, what if you want to comment on them? In that case you would want to use something like iAnnotate PDF. iAnnotate PDF has sophisticated annotation tools that make it easy to mark up a PDF and share it.  

Companies that make desktop software used in research are creating companion apps. MatLab has an iPad app called MatLab Mobile that can connect to a MatLab session on your desktop and control it. Maple has a similar app called Maple Player. Lastly, I wanted to mention the ArcGIS app you can use it to view your own data, but it also has tools for data collection and editing.

In terms of data collection there are apps like Bento that let you build a database, and use it to collect and manipulate data.  Because of its flexibility Bento would be useful as a data collection tool in several disciplines, from Education to Engineering. When I was discussing the iPad’s hardware I mentioned that it has an accelerometer, gyroscope, and magnetometer. The Data Collection app saves the measurements from these sensors to  text files that can be imported into software like Excel or Matlab.

I want to end by giving you links to articles about how other researchers are using iPads:

If you are interested in finding out if an iPad would be useful in a particular research project please contact us at x3724 or cirtlab@unf.edu 

Kuo, Y.-S., Schmid, T., & Dutta, P. (2010). Hijacking Power and Bandwidth from the Mobile Phone’s Audio Interface (p. 6). Presented at the ISLPED’10 Design Contest, Austin, Texas USA. Retrieved from http://www.eecs.umich.edu/~prabal/pubs/papers/kuo10hijack-islped.pdf

Kurtzleben, D. (2012, March 08). Why the New iPad Features Don’t Really Matter: For non-techies as well as Apple shareholders the existence, not the particulars, of the upgrade that matters. chicagotribune.com. Retrieved from http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/sns-201203081144usnewsusnwr201203070307applemar08,0,6323585.story

Miller, S. (2012, March 04). iPad as a tool for Global Health fieldwork research | Center for Instructional Technology. Retrieved March 12, 2012, from http://cit.duke.edu/blog/2011/03/ipadread/

Sample, M. (2012, February 9). Zotero Roundup: Zotero 3.0 and ZotPad for the iPad. ProfHacker. The Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/zotero-apps-roundup-standalone-and-the-ipad/38325

The iPad for Professors: Evaluating a Productivity Tool After One Year. (2011, March 27).The Chronicle of Higher Education. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/article/The-iPad-for-Professors-/126885/

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BEST PRACTICES ONLINE: USABILITY AND ACCESSIBILITY BEST PRACTICES 
Julie Carter, Coordinator of Instructional Design, julie.carter@unf.edu
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onlineImplementing accessibility best practices when developing your online course enhances the usability of your course for students with or without disabilities. For example, when delivering content via PowerPoint slides it is a best practice to use slide templates so that a screen reader can read the slide content in order, starting with the title text and continuing through the body text. The text organization provided by the slide template not only assists the students with disabilities, but it also enhances the learning of all students by displaying course content in a logical order with emphasis, or larger text, on important course terms, concepts, etc. For additional PowerPoint Accessibility best practices, go to the WebAIM (Web Accessibility in Mind) site.

Designing courses with multiple opportunities for students to learn and access course content supports not only accessibility but also universal design for learning. This means that your course design is flexible and offers multiple options for your students to access your content based on their learning needs and styles. For example, when creating a video, an accessibility and universal design best practice is to have both captioning and a transcript available.  If you reference any digital media, such as audio or video files, from your course, it is recommended that you ask the owner, whether it is your textbook publisher or another individual, if captioning or a transcript is available for the media. For more information on creating closed captioning and transcripts, contact CIRT.

Additional course design best practices that promote accessibility and usability of your course include making text legible by using text formatting, such as the font style and size, and the PowerPoint slide color theme, including the text and background colors.  For examples of these best practices, refer to the Lighthouse International website. By designing your course using these best practices, your course will be universally designed to enhance the learning for all of your students. 

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BLACKBOARD NEWS: LEARNING OBJECTS UPGRADE, MCGRAW HILL CONNECT AND MAY MAINTENANCE
Jen Urbano, Coordinator of Distance Learning Training & Support, jurbano@unf.edu
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Blackboard Maintenance
The Blackboard Semester Maintenance window is scheduled for May 3-6, 2012.  Spring 2010 courses will be removed from Blackboard and Spring 2011 courses will be set to “unavailable” and will be renamed by prepending “zzSpring2011” to each course name.

Summer 2012 Courses are available for request in BbCAR as of March 11, 2012.

Fall 2012 Courses will be available for request in BbCAR on April 1, 20

LO4Learning Objects Campus Pack 4
UNF is piloting the Campus Pack 4 tools from Learning Objects during the Spring 2012 semester, with plans to upgrade campus-wide during the May 2012 maintenance window.  Campus Pack integrates social media tools such as wikis, blogs and podcasts into Blackboard.

Campus Pack 4 introduces new features and a hosted content service.  This means that all content created in the Campus Pack 4 tools is housed on the Learning Objects servers.  This change should be transparent to most users, though you may notice a new “Connecting to Campus Pack” when launching the tool the first time.

New tools in Campus Pack 4:

  • Streamlined navigation – Navigation within the Campus Pack tools has been tweaked to provide more tools “at your fingertips.”  The horizontal navigation running across the top of the page focuses more on the tool settings (exporting, permissions, recycling, subscription, etc), whereas the vertical navigation running along the right side of the page is more activity-focused (page listing, tags, activity feeds, etc.)
  • Blogs and Journals – In the current version of Campus Pack, only one tool  (Campus Pack Blog) is available for both group blogs and private journals.  Campus Pack 4 has split that functionality into two separate tools: Blog & Journal – making the setup for each that much easier.
  • Inline podcasting – Students & instructors can now record a podcast directly inside Campus Pack in the course.  In as few as 3 clicks, an episode can be recorded and saved to a course feed in Blackboard – as opposed to recording the podcast using external recording software and then uploading the audio file to Blackboard.
  • Widgets – The ability to add widgets brings important Web 2.0 interactivity and engagement functionality to the Campus Pack collaborative tools.  The widgets available allow users to vote on and rank content in their course, as well as tag and categorize it.
  • Assessment tools – Activity Feeds & Versioning
    • Activity feeds give instructors (and students) an at-a-glance update on recent additions and changes to the specific Campus Pack tool.
    • Version histories give instructors insight into students' learning process and contributions to assignments.  Higher level evaluations of page, group and individual student contributions are available – but they can be misleading without the version history, which will allow instructors to see the exact edits made to each version of a wiki page, rather than just the number of times a student edited a page.

More information about Campus Pack 4 can be found at the main Learning Objects website (http://www.learningobjects.com/campuspackfusion.jsp), as well as their Community site (http://community.learningobjects.com/) which provides documentation, tutorials, and other training materials.

ConnectMcGraw-Hill Connect
UNF will make available the McGraw-Hill Connect building block during the May 2012 maintenance window so that it is available for use beginning Summer 2012.  The building block seamlessly integrates McGraw-Hill’s Connect & Create tool into Blackboard.  Single sign-on and gradebook integration help create one-stop teaching and learning. 

Connect integration into Blackboard will allow instructors to easily create assignments, exams, quizzes, readings, study modules and web activities directly within the Connect tool, and immediately deploy them in Blackboard.  The McGraw-Hill content is interactive and engaging, and assessments are very easy to setup and have a wealth of modification options.

As with any other assessment that is submitted through Blackboard, a score column is created in the Grade Center automatically – and the assessment is graded inside Connect and posted to the Grade Center upon submission.

To learn more about McGraw-Hill Connect and Blackboard integration website: http://www.mhhe.com/domore/.

Blackboard Server Upgrade
Good news!  The Blackboard server upgrade is proceeding as planned, and on track for installation and cut-over before the end of the Spring 2012 semester.  ITS, the Help Desk, and CIRT staff are working diligently to thoroughly test the new hardware’s load capacity and functionality within the Blackboard application.  This upgrade should greatly improve Blackboard’s overall performance, and reduce the service disruptions that have occurred with growing frequency due to increased load and activity on the servers.

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Blackboard Course and User Retention Reminder

In order to align Blackboard account practices with UNF policies and employ best practices for data retention and optimal system performance, the following course and user account retention processes are in place:

Course Retention

  • Every term-based course is removed from the system 2 years after the end of the term in which it was used.

  • Other types of courses are removed from the system when all users with Instructor role have their enrollment disabled for at least 3 months, or when the course has been disabled for at least 3 months(disabled courses are not visible to any users).

User Accounts

  • For any user account which is disabled and not enrolled in any courses for at least 3 months. When a user is removed from a course, the user no longer appears in the GradeCenter and all associated records (Discussion Board postings, submitted Assignments, Blogs, etc) are also removed. Student accounts are disabled upon graduation.

Notification emails for course removal are sent to the instructor(s) of the course(s), notifying them of the removal and steps they can take to retain content and student records in advance of course removal. These notifications are sent 3 months, 1 month, and 7 days before removal.

More information is available at: http://www.unf.edu/cirt/bb/about/Blackboard_Course_and_Account_Retention.aspx

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APP REVIEWS: EVERNOTE
Mike Boyles, Coordinator of Graphic Design, mboyles@unf.edu
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Carry and share your thoughts everywhere with Evernote.

eVERNOTEWith Evernote, you can capture almost anything, access it anywhere, and find or share it with others fast.

One of the first things you will notice about Evernote is that it’s incredibly valuable. The Evernote family of products help you remember and act upon ideas, projects and experiences across almost all computers, smart phones and tablets you use. It’s a great tool for personal use (shopping lists, notes, reminders, etc.) and an amazing tool for educators and students in — or out of — the classroom.

Evernote is a web-based and cloud-based computing tool that allows you to create notebooks, and notes within them, along with adding bookmarks and your favorite resources. You can attach documents, photos, scans, web clippings, voice memos, audio files, text notes and more.

It has the same basic text features you would expect with most text editing software including font choices, size, weight, text justification, bulleted lists, numbered lists, etc. You can also add check mark boxes to create a "to-do" list and click them when you finish the task at hand, from any of your devices (great for shopping lists or to-do lists).

The best way to start with Evernote is by adding a new notebook. You can add more notebooks as you need them - ideas, journals, shopping, recipes, random thoughts, current projects, favorite wines with photos of labels, articles, etc. The preview pane helps you to scan through your notebooks. After this you just keep adding notes to the notebook you want. If you add a note to the wrong notebook, or just want to rearrange things, it's very easy to move it by right clicking and selecting the "Move to Notebook" option.

One of the best features of Evernote is that you can download the app for your desktop computer and use your keyboard and mouse instead of the small keypad on a smart phone or iPad. You can also work from anywhere in the world on the Evernote website or access everything easily on your portable devices when you download the apps for these— Evernote is available for Mac, Windows, web browsers, iPhone, iPod, iPad, Android, BlackBerry, Palm Pre, and Windows Mobile. Most of the features are available with all of the apps. Each time you edit in Evernote, is synched with all of your devices so everything is current and up-to-date — no matter where you access it.  After you log in to Evernote, it syncs with all of your devices automatically, or you can force it to sync simply by clicking the sync button — if you need to share something immediately.

There are browser plugins (web clippers) for Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari and Chrome. Chrome has an add-on in the menu bar to click and save a site and it will ask you where you want to save it, or add it to Google+ status updates.

If you have a video cam, you can also create a video note. Another option is using the Evernote microphone for audio notes. While you're out and about, you can also add photos with your smart phone or iPad as reminders. The options are almost limitless.

Adding tags to any of your notes makes searching for anything so easy. Simply click on a note and tag it with as many subject ideas that you want. Save your note and your tags are there. This feature makes searching your notes invaluable. Keep tags minimal and simple. Be selective when adding tags, since Evernote's search tool is able to find any word that is typed in your notes.

Another amazing feature of Evernote is if you add photos or screen captures with text in the image, Evernote will scan the image so you can later search for words within the image. This feature works best on sharp text with a reasonable resolution. It's pretty impressive!

Evernote allows you to share entire notebooks or notes with individuals, groups or the entire world. To share a notebook, just select the "Shared" tab at the top of the left menu bar and a new window will appear. Choose the notebook you want to share and select whether you want to make it available for the world, or to individuals by email, or to share the url of the content with individuals or groups by email. To share a note, right click on the note and select the "Share" options. It is quite easy to post an Evernote url in Blackboard to be accessed by your students.

If you have notes or data that you want to keep secure, Evernote allows you to encrypt or decrypt the note with password protection. It also allows you to change this setting easily.

You can also create "Stacks" in Evernote, that allow you to have many notebooks under one subject. To do this, just click on a notebook and drag it into the notebook that you want to create a Stack with. After doing this you can edit the name of the Stack. You can delete the Stack by right clicking on it and selecting delete, your notebooks will still remain, but not clustered together anymore in a Stack.

As a free member, there is a limit to what you can upload — up to 60 megabytes per month. If you need more space you can upgrade to the premium version which allows you to upload a gigabyte of data for $4.99 per month or $44.95 per year. Premium users can allow others to edit their notes, making Evernote a great tool for working on a project with others or planning a trip with friends. There are also many add-on apps available to help with other tasks — just click on the "Trunk" button at the top menu bar to view them.

Students can use Evernote with all the same features mentioned — for clipping website reminders, photos, videos, and of course, taking notes in class. It is invaluable for them, as well.

Evernote can be as complex or as simple as you want it to be. If you need assistance with getting started or learning more about Evernote, we will be happy to assist you.

APP INFO
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/evernote/id281796108?mt=8

Cost: Free 
Platforms: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and ipad. iOS, Mac, PC, Android
Current Version: 4.1.8
Updated: February 7, 2012

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NEWS FROM ITS- SURVEY TOOL UPGRADE

Vovici

Vovici, UNF’s online survey application, will be upgraded to version 6.3 on Sunday, April 1 between 5 a.m. and 9 a.m., during the University’s scheduled maintenance window.  The upgrade brings no significant  changes to the interface, but introduces some new features such as links for public reports, shared report filtering, copying of reports, and randomization of matrix columns and rows. During the upgrade, students, faculty, and staff will not be able to login to Vovici and survey participants will not be able to access surveys running in Vovici.

Active surveys using the UNF Theme will need to have “changes applied” to the survey so the UNF Theme displays correctly after the upgrade is completed. If you would like Information Technology Services to apply the changes for you after the upgrade is finished, please complete a short form at https://survey.unf.edu/survey/se.ashx?s=5A1E27D229BF55D4 by Friday, March 30 at 5 p.m. Questions may be directed to the ITS Help Desk at ext. 4357 (HELP) or helpdesk@unf.edu.

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This newsletter is a publication of the
Center for Instruction & Research Technology
at the University of North Florida.
Deb Miller, Editor


Please direct any comments or questions to cirtlab@unf.edu

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