Being creative comes naturally to some; they can design and create easily and quickly. For some of us, it’s a bit harder to get the creativity flowing; we need a little guidance! Before becoming a Training Coordinator, I hadn’t heard of Canva. When I first heard the name, I was picturing a tool to design blank canvases. Canva is an easy graphic-design tool that’s incredibly user-friendly.
Last October, members of the Pedagome PLC connected with the creators of DigPINS, a faculty development experience created by Autumm Caines and Sundi Richard that focuses on the growth of digital identity and presence.
A quick perusal of the internet will turn up an unlimited number of extremely complicated rubrics for discussion boards. They can be overwhelming and scary. They can make you feel like you are nickel and diming your students for every aspect of their participation. Also, a callback to my previous post: discussions are not meant to serve as a platform for long-winded, one-sided speeches, but this is how it often translates online. Banal, wordy “discussions” can also translate into assessment burden and burnout for instructors.
Amy’s my name and educational tech conferences are my game! Ok, but seriously...I have quite a few ed. tech conferences under my belt. (Humble brag) So I decided to compile a quick list of pointers to help you get the most out of the conferences you attend. Additionally, I was recently named the eLCC (eLearning Consortium of Colorado) Conference Co-Chair so that I may share my expertise in this area by helping to plan the upcoming 2020 conference.
Last month I began outlining factors which contribute to online student success. I highlighted a few that I’ve seen over and over both through literature and in my own experiences as an instructional designer, doctoral student, and online instructor. To recap my first post on “What factors contribute to online student success?”, good course design and facilitation, feeling a part of a community, and effective feedback loops are all factors which contribute to student engagement, motivation, and ultimately success online.
One of my favorite tools to tell people about is Adobe Spark. It is an online tool that is completely free (with the option to upgrade some features) and can be used on almost any device as long as you have access to the internet. Adobe Spark starts out by giving you a wide range of templates that can be customized so you can create graphics, videos and webpages. With these templates you can easily change the text, graphics or other elements to make powerful multimedia for your courses.
As part of the Online Learning Consortium (OLC) Innovate 2019 conference, our team of instructional designers, Sarah North, Lynée Sanute, and myself, led an emerging ideas session around our work in diversifying design partnership options for faculty who are teaching online. Our presentation represents the first milestone in our process, and I want to share some background on what we’re doing.
In the spring of 2018, the Office of Digital Education (formerly CU Online) worked together with faculty member Lois Brink from the College of Architecture and Planning on a collaborative project to bring online students and face-to-face students together in a single classroom. With all the technology options available, the Microsoft Surface Hub reigned supreme and was selected to be the best tool on the market to make this idea a reality.
With the support of the CU System President and CU Denver and Anschutz Medical Campus Chancellors, Online Education is vastly improving at our campuses. With this support, the Office of Digital Education (formerly CU Online) now has the ability to provide a robust marketing and student recruitment effort as well as a student success team to support your new, fully online students from the moment they indicate they have an interest in your program.
Oh discussions, the often-dreaded exercise of the online experience. The design of a discussion can turn an exciting topic into a banal exercise where students are drafting large, online speeches and grasping at straws to provide two “meaningful” (hello subjectivity!) responses to other colleagues’ long speeches to meet the requirements in time.

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