New Blackboard Instructor app

You may see notifications from Blackboard about Instructor, their new mobile app for staff.

Blackboard Instructor logo

This is part of a revamp of Blackboard’s mobile provision. Mobile Learn is being discontinued in favour of two “persona-based” apps:

  • a student app simply called Blackboard – see our guidance for students on the Student Help site
  • Blackboard Instructor for those with a staff role (e.g. Instructor or Teaching Assistant) on their Blackboard courses

Students are able to use the Blackboard app right now, but staff eager to try out Blackboard Instructor will have to wait until 7th August, after our system upgrade.

We will make sure we have some guidance material ready by then.

In the meantime you can get an idea of what the app can do from this short video

and on the Blackboard Help site: https://help.blackboard.com/Blackboard_App/Instructor

 

Initially the app provides limited functionality, but the range of features will increase over the coming months. In this first version you can

  • preview course content, including tests and assignments – this could be really useful to check how well students are able to view your course content on a mobile device
  • post announcements
  • post and reply to discussion forums
  • launch Collaborate Ultra sessions

Future releases will allow tablet users to view, mark and provide feedback on assignment submissions.

TEL Fest 2017 – Booking is now open!

TEL Fest logo

 

Bookings for TEL Fest sessions are now open! (This event is for University of Reading staff only.) 

*Please see the link in the Details & Booking section at the end of this email for full descriptions of the ‘gigs’ (sessions) and booking information.*

TEL Fest

TEL Fest is designed in large part (though not exclusively) to help academic staff make the most of technology to enrich teaching and learning. (Administrative staff may also be interested in some of the sessions.) A series of bookable sessions, and something a little different from our TEL staff development provision during the year, it draws on expertise from colleagues across the University and external speakers, and comprises a range of TEL-related demonstrations, practical workshops, a roadshow and sharing/showcase sessions. Whether you come along to one or many ‘gigs’, and regardless of your previous TEL experience, the festival has been developed to ensure that you leave both inspired and equipped with the skills you need to enhance your current practice.

The Programme

Here’s how the final festival programme (and catered lunchtime ‘fringe’) shapes up:

  • Tuesday 11 July

Telling TEL Tales and TEL Tapas: A taster session. What are they doing elsewhere with TEL and Blackboard? Examples of interesting & innovative practice at other institutions (Steve Hoole, Blackboard)

Mixing it up with an OOC: Lessons from our Open Online Courses for designing blended learning and maximising student engagement (the OOC team)

Lunchtime ‘Fringe’: TEL Roadshow

Blackboard Bootcamp: Whip your Blackboard course in to shape! A practical workshop to help you develop your Blackboard module (Steve Hoole, Blackboard) 

  • Wednesday 12 July

Electronic Management of Assessment – Programme overview, progress and initial deliverables! (Emma Mayhew & EMA team)

1. ABC Curriculum Design workshop. A rapid-design workshop useful for new programmes and those being reviewed and changing to a more blended format, with links to the Curriculum Framework initiative (Clive Young & Natasa Perovic, University College, London)

Lunchtime ‘Fringe’: Show and TEL –  A forum for academics to share how they’ve used an aspect of technology enhanced learning in their teaching

2. ABC Curriculum Design workshop. Repeat of morning’s rapid-design workshop useful for new programmes and those being reviewed and changing to a more blended format, with links to the Curriculum Framework initiative (ADE/TEL staff along with Clive Young & Natasa Perovic, University College, London)

  • Thursday 13 July

Blackboard Collaborate Ultra (Live Online Classroom): Launch & Early Adopters Showcase– Official launch of this new online collaboration/live online classroom tool and tales, hints and tips from our early adopters (Lauren McCann, Adam Bailey & early adopters)

An introduction to using webinars for teaching and Learning using Blackboard Collaborate Ultra (Adam Bailey & Angela Buckingham)

Lunchtime ‘Fringe’: APPetite – Sharing apps for teaching & learning

Play a video and BoB’s your uncle! Using TV and radio programmes from Box of Broadcasts (BoB) to enhance teaching and learning (Markeda Cole, Learning on Screen)

Details & Booking

Book to come along to one, a few or all of the ‘gigs’ – whatever best suits you!

For full details of each of the sessions (in chronological order) and to book, please visit: https://www.reading.ac.uk/cqsd/TandLEvents/CQSD-TELEvents.aspx

All sessions are capped at 40 participants, except for Blackboard Collaborate: Using webinars for teaching & Learning (Thurs 13 July) which, for logistical reasons, is capped at 20 on this occasion. If the session you require is full and you are unable to book a place, feel free to email cqsd-tandl@reading.ac.uk to be added to a waiting list.

Please feel free to get in touch directly with me if you have any questions about this event – I’ll be happy to advise.  

Countdown: 5 weeks ’til TEL Fest – TEL your colleagues!  

Image of spaceship countdown

TEL FEST: 11 – 13 July 2017 (Save the date!)

TEL Fest, 11-13 July 2017

SAVE THE DATE!  

Image of festival flags

As the festival season approaches, we thought we’d host a festival of our own this summer: TEL Fest – A festival of Technology Enhanced Learning. TEL Fest is designed to help academic and teaching staff make the most of technology to enrich teaching and learning. A series of bookable sessions, and something a little different from our TEL staff development provision during the year, it will draw on expertise from colleagues across the University and external speakers, and will comprise a range of TEL-related demonstrations, practical workshops, a roadshow and sharing/showcase sessions. Whether you come along to one or many ‘gigs’, and regardless of your previous TEL experience, the festival is being developed to ensure that you leave both inspired and equipped with the skills you need to enhance your current practice.

To whet your palate, here’s a taste of the current programme:

Image Source: https://pixabay.com/en/flags-pennants-red-yellow-blue-425046/ [19/5/17]
  • Telling ‘TEL’ Tales and TEL Tapas: A taster session. What are they doing elsewhere with TEL and Blackboard? Examples of interesting & innovative practice at other institutions (Steve Hoole, Blackboard)
  • Blackboard Bootcamp: Whip your Blackboard course in to shape! A practical workshop to help you develop your Blackboard module (Steve Hoole, Blackboard)
  • Open Online Courses (OOCs): Lessons from UoR’s successful OOC team for designing blended learning/Blackboard courses and promoting participation and engagement (OOC team)
  • ABC Curriculum Design workshop With links to the Curriculum Framework initiative, a rapid-design workshop useful for new programmes and those being reviewed and changing to a more blended format (Clive Young & Natasa Perovic, University College, London)
  • Blackboard Collaborate: Live Classroom – Official launch of this new online collaboration/live online classroom tool and tales, hints and tips from the pilot case studies
  • Box of Broadcasts: Demonstration of this on-demand TV and radio service for education (Library/Learning on Screen)

 

We’re also planning a series of bookable lunchtime festival ‘fringe’ events (possibly catered), including:

  • TEL Roadshow – Come, meet & talk to staff from TEL-related teams including Blackboard, TEL CQSD, OOCs, TEL/AV Support, IT, ISLI TEL & more…
  • Show and TEL – find out how colleagues are using different aspects of TEL to enrich teaching and learning
  • APPetite – sharing apps to help promote active learning and student engagement

With a raffle and festival freebies too, it promises to be a great event! More information and booking details to follow shortly but be sure to SAVE THE DATE and ‘tel’ your colleagues!

#uortelfest17

Image of technology

 

 

 

 

 

Image Source: https://pixabay.com/en/technology-information-digital-2082642/ [19/5/17]

Festive fun & mobile learning with the 12 Apps of Christmas!

As the festive season approaches, there’s another opportunity to take part in a revised 12 Apps of Christmas activity – a free, short, online Continuing Professional Development course in which an app is released each day for the first 12 weekdays of December. Log in for 10 minutes a day and get a quick outline of different ways that you can integrate particular apps into teaching and learning.

12 Apps of Xmas

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are several versions of this initiative being run by various institutions. UoR Senior Research Fellow Alice Mauchline and colleagues in the Agriculture Department have written a case study on an app (top secret until the big reveal!) for the course produced by the Dublin Institute of Technology.

Or why not enrol on the award-winning course from Regents’ University, London?

Enrol now and get ‘appy for Christmas!

Not sure what an app is? Click here to find out more.

Enjoy!

Lauren

APPetite provides food for thought!

Appetite-introslideOn Thursday 7th July over 40 members of Academic, Administrative and Professional staff attended a new informal lunchtime staff development event called APPetite to discover, explore and discuss the use of mobile apps used in Learning and Teaching. At this attendee led event short talks were delivered by several attendees describing their use of apps, followed by an opportunity to try them out and discuss options with others.

The session format:

  1. Appetisers – Short talks by attendees.
  2. Meal Deal – Discuss, try out and ask questions about the apps presented.
  3. Sweet Treats – Share your thoughts, ideas and outcomes online.

See how the event unfolded on Twitter #TEL_APPetite

Explore the apps presented at the session on the collaboratively authored Padlet wall.

Thank you to our speakers:

  • Elizabeth Conaghan and Amanda Milmore (School of Law)
  • Stanimira Milcheva (Henley Business School)
  • Matthew Nicholls (Classics)

Our intention is to make this a regular lunchtime event during the next academic year, although we can’t always promise to provide the catering!

Want to join us next time? Watch out for details of the next APPetite session in the new academic year on the TEL CQSD T&L Programme page!

 

‘Appy Christmas from TEL CQSD!

Festive Apps to download during the festive season

Christmas is almost here!  Here’s our pick of  the fun Christmas apps available for you to download for an ‘appy Christmas! (They’re free and available for both Apple and Android unless otherwise stated.)

The TEL CQSD team in their festive jumpers

The TEL elves

1. Elf yourself

It’s been a favourite for several years but the fun never seems to wear off! Turn yourself, your family and friends into a group of dancing elves with your own faces! Simply upload the images from your camera roll and away you go!

2. Official NORAD Santa Tracker

A great app if you’re entertaining children over the festive period. The NORAD Santa Tracker does what it says: you can track Santa from his North Pole journey all over the world on Christmas Eve.

3. Inkly

Create and send Christmas cards in under three minutes with Inkly. There are hundreds of designs to choose from or you can even create your own by uploading your favourite photos. Inkly uses handwriting technology too. Write your message on a piece of paper, take a picture of it with your phone and transfer your handwriting (and sketches) inside your chosen card. You can then add the address, choose from seven different coloured envelopes and Inkly prints and sends them in the post on the same day! (Price per card is £2.99 plus 69p for first class delivery.)

4. Fireplace 3D Lite (Free and available for iPhones and tablets only)

Fireplace 3D Lite from iTunes will make you feel cosy this Christmas with an image of a real log fire. There are three different fireplaces to choose from: rustic, traditional and Victorian, which each have realistic images to make you feel warm and cosy.

5. Santa Claus Yourself Xmas Photo Booth (Free and available for iPhones and tablets only)

How will you look with Santa Claus’ beard? Or what about your family in a Santa hat? You can find out using this app. Simply upload a picture from your phone and give it a Christmas makeover then share your masterpieces on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

6. Christmas Music (Free and available for iPhones and tablets only)

Do you love a Christmas tune or two? You can listen to thousands of free holiday songs with the Christmas Music app. All of the apps’ music is vetted to be from Creative Commons or independent musicians which means they are all completely legal for you to enjoy!

Wishing you a very happy Christmas & a fab 2016. Enjoy the festive holiday!

Vicki, Adam, Maria, Andy, Shirin & Lauren

TEL CQSD