2.20.2014

Google Engine Maps

Google Engine Maps Lite provides you with an easy way to create a custom map by uploading locations and detailed data. (click the image to see a larger version).

Want to create a map of the Tour de France start and finishes? Upload a spreadsheet with the city/country and name of the stage. 

Need a visual of unemployment in Wisconsin? Upload a Google Doc of the cities and their percentages. Use the customization tools to better illustrate the information. Click this link for instructions on how to use this tool.

This information was presented on by Meghan Dowell during a drop-in session at the Library. This and other topics will be visited again over the course of the semester. If you would like to see the full schedule, please visit this page.

2.17.2014

Library Resources Moodle Block

We just added another resource to Moodle - a Library Resources (by subject) block!

After adding the block to your course you will have quick access to databases suited to the subject of your course. Clicking a link in the Library Resources block will take you to a page of carefully curated resources of databases and media for specific disciplines to simplify your and your students research. Keep an eye on these pages over the next couple weeks as the format will be changing to provide you even better support.

To add the block to your course:

1. Open your course.
2. Turn editing on.
3. Click the Add block... drop-down menu.
4. Select "Library Resources" from the list.

Once the block has been added to your course, you may move/place it where ever you feel is best.

2.07.2014

Drop-In Session: Annotating PDF

The library recently hosted a drop-in session about annotating PDF files, facilitated by Consulting Librarian, Meghan Dowell. During the session Meghan shared how it is possible to annotate PDF files. This has so many applications from grading to taking notes to collaboration. Adding sticky notes, highlighting text, attaching documents and recording audio and more are possible with a free application. What is it you may ask? Your friendly neighborhood Adobe Reader.


Below are some examples of the annotation tasks you can accomplish with Adobe Reader. (Click a thumbnail to see the full image.)

Highlighting Text














Add a Note to Text














Delete and Add Text














You may access the full notes from the session here.

More drop-in sessions are scheduled. Faculty, staff and students are welcome. Topics include: Moodle, Google Engine Maps, Research tools and strategies, Google Sites and Blogger. If you are interested in seeing the full schedule for the drop-in sessions please visit this webpage.

Click this link to download Adobe Reader.


1.31.2014

Fall 2013 Courses Archived

All the courses from Fall 2013 have been archived according to the Moodle Policy. This means that students no longer have access to them. Faculty should still be able to access the courses from the My Courses block. Please contact Instructional Technology if you have any questions.

1.30.2014

Clickers in the Classroom

Instructional Technology had the opportunity to attend a webinar sponsored by iClicker and hosted by Dr. Stephanie Chasteen. The webinar discussed strategies for using "clickers" (student response systems) effectively in a class.

The strategies shared during the presentation may be used with any "clicker" system. Dr. Chasteen also shared a little about the pedagogy of peer instruction and its effectiveness.



Among the tips offered were the following:

  • Create student buy-in - Student buy-in is key. Do what you can to make the use of clickers a worthwhile experience.
  • Use good questions - Stay away from rote memory type questions or those that allow patter matching. Good questions require reasoning.
  • Wait to share poll results and answers as long as possible - doing so will create interest and aid discussion/learning.
  • Establish a safe, respectful environment - encourage sharing of ideas, don't show the results (histograms/answers) right away, ask multiple students to defend the choices they made and emphasize reasoning.

Dr. Chasteen has generously shared handouts and other resources from the webinar. Feel free to check them out at the link below:



You may also view a recording of the webinar (1:19) hosted on iClicker's website. Follow the link below to view the webinar.


If you are interested in exploring "clickers" as a pedagogical tool you may want to visit the following link which is a community of users sharing best practices and example questions.



Image By Selena Wilke (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons