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Goodreader and Organization

January 25, 2013 Faculty, Free Software, Lead Story, Web 2.0 Comments Off

As I prepared for my research, I sought out a tool to help me electronically organize the journal articles I was reading. I wrote about that experience in Faculty Focus which published the article today.

Changes in Prezi

January 2, 2013 Free Software, Web 2.0 Comments Off

If you are a fan of Prezi like I am, you’ve probably noticed a LOT of changes in the application recently.  So here is a quick guide for what has changed:

Say goodbye to the Bubble Menu

The bubble menu is gone. Most functions are now available at the top. The path can be edited by either clicking on the path numbers or with a button above the thumbnails on the left.

Frames behave differently

Hidden frames now group content inside. To move them without their content, press and hold ALT while moving the mouse.

Deleting frames removes content too. Use ALT to select or right click to remove without content.

Frames are now automatically added to the path once they are created. Close the side bar on the left to turn off the animated feedback.

Shortcut settings

By default some shortcuts are turned off. You can enable them from the settings menu.

Tool selection shortcuts got smarter: press ‘s’ repeatedly to cycle through different shape styles.

For more information on the recent changes (and what more are to come) check out the official Prezi website: http://prezi.com/learn/user-interface-whats-changed/

101 Chrome Extensions

December 19, 2011 Free Software, Google, Web 2.0 Comments Off

Earlier this month, I shared with you that Google’s Internet browser, Chrome, recently became the world’s number two most popular browser.

The folks over at www.makeuseof.com released a “101 Best Chrome Extensions” list.  Extensions are extra features and functionality that you can easily add to Google Chrome. By using extensions, you can customize Google Chrome with features you like, while keeping your browser free of things that you don’t use.  With extensions you can:

  • Get bonus information about a page.
  • Get timely notifications.
  • Do things with fewer clicks.

Some of my favorite Chrome extensions are:

  • Diigo
  • Google Dictionary by Google
  • Rain Alarm
  • Google Alerter
  • LastPass
  • TweetDeck
Still not sure what a Chrome Extension is?  Check out the video:

Final Summer Learning Series Speaker

August 19, 2011 Lead Story, Presentations, Teaching and Learning, Web 2.0 Comments Off

Join your colleagues, the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technology, and Next Generation Learning Challenges for the last webcast of the summer learning series dedicated to the transformative role that technology can play in fostering student success.

Please note we will meet in Tyler Haynes Commons Conference Room #310 for this webinar which starts at 1pm.  Arrive early and bring your lunch.  A local discussion of the topic will follow.

The next event (on August 23, 2011) will feature Dr. Patrick McAndrew, Associate Director of Learning & Teaching at Open University. The subject of his presentation will be, “Using Openness to Bridge Success.”

Dr. McAndrew is the director of the Open Learning network (OLnet) and of Research and Evaluation for OpenLearn, open content initiative for a two year period 2006-2008 along with his core role as a Senior Lecturer in the  Institute of Educational Technology (IET). As Associate Director (Learning & Teaching) he is a member of the executive team for IET. From 2002 to 2005 Patrick was Head of the Centre for Information Technology in Education.  His blog is here: http://openpad.wordpress.com/

The Institute of Educational Technology (IET) at the Open University connects innovation and expertise in learning and teaching and uses this collective power to change the face of education.

IET’s programme of work is at the heart of the Open University’s mission to be a world leader in the design, content and delivery of supported open and distance learning through the innovative use of technology.

For more information about our role and objectives please see ‘who they are’ and ‘what they do’.

The Open Learning Initiative Webinar

August 11, 2011 Lead Story, Presentation, Teaching and Learning, Web 2.0 Comments Off

Join your colleagues, the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technology, and Next Generation Learning Challenges for the next webcast dedicated to the transformative role that technology can play in fostering student success.

Please note we will meet in Tylor Haynes Commons Conference Room 310 for this webinar.

Candace ThilleThe next event (on August 16, 2011 at 1 pm) will feature Candace Thille, Director of the Open Learning Initiative.  The subject of her presentation will be, “The Open Learning Initiative.”

The Open Learning Initiative uses knowledge from learning science and the affordances of the web to transform instruction, significantly improving learning outcomes and achieves significant increases in productivity in post secondary education.  OLI aims to produce exemplars of scientifically based online courses and course materials that enact instruction and support instructors while providing open access to these courses and materials.  Ultimately, OLI hopes to develop a community of use, research and development that contributes to the evaluation, continuous improvement, and ongoing growth of their courses and materials.

For more information please visit: http://learning.richmond.edu/atc/

Games and Social Networks as Next Generation Learning Experiences

July 20, 2011 Events, Lead Story, Teaching and Learning, Web 2.0 Comments Off

Join your colleagues, the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technology, and Next Generation Learning Challenges for the next webcast dedicated to the transformative role that technology can play in fostering student success.

Please note we will meet in the Science Center Conference Room for this webinar.

The next event (on July 28, 2011) will feature Steve Ritter from Carnegie Learning; Chris Sprague from OpenStudy; and David Gibson from SimSchool.  The subject of their presentation will be, “Games and Social Networks as Next Generation Learning Experiences.”

Gamification isn’t just a hot topic in the social media world, where people are competing for badges and titles on FourSquare and other applications; it’s also an emerging trend in education technology. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a Next Generation Learning Challenges partner, recently announced $20 million in grants for digital learning with an emphasis on game-based teaching tools, game-design curricula and instructive video games. Several other projects – including Next Generation Learning Challenges Wave I grant recipients – are making educational applications and sites more game-like in an effort to increase engagement and collaboration among students.

Summer Webinar Series, July 12 Speaker

July 5, 2011 Events, Faculty, Lead Story, Teaching and Learning, Web 2.0 Comments Off

Thomas Cavanagh

This summer, you’re invited to join your colleagues, the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technology, and Next Generation Learning Challenges for a “Summer Learning Series” – a schedule of webcasts dedicated to the transformative role that technology can play in fostering student success with solutions designed to improve college completion.

The next speaker (presenting on July 12, 2011) will be Thomas Cavanagh, Assistant Vice President of Distributed Learning. He will discuss, “Blended Learning at the University of Central Florida.” Cavanagh is an accomplished instructional designer, program manager, faculty member, and administrator. He has developed award-winning e-learning programs for Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and the military. Currently, he is the Assistant Vice President of Distributed Learning for the University of Central Florida. He has been interviewed or featured in many publications including Training, Federal Computer Week, Information Week, and the Washington Post. He has represented the Independent Colleges and Universities of Florida on the Florida Distance Learning Consortium and has participated on the Advisory Board for the Brevard Community College Virtual Campus. He is also the author of several mystery novels.

Throughout the summer, subsequent webcasts will explore the critical role that technology can play in expanding the use of educational models designed to promote engagement, flexibility, and collaboration in the classroom from the first wave of NGLC grantees.

Location: Taylor Haynes Commons Room 310.  Bring your lunch and arrive early.  Time will be provided after the presentation for discussion.

For additional information please visit: http://learning.richmond.edu/atc/

Get your game on, and learn something, too

January 5, 2010 Web 2.0 Comments Off

Have you heard of FreeRice? It’s an educational trivia game site where each answer you get right nets you 10 grains of rice donated to the United Nations’ World Food Programme. The initial visit lands you on the English vocabulary adaptive multiple-choice game, where you might encounter words like tenacious, antediluvian, tutelar, melilot or culet. The words get more difficult as you grains answer more questions correctly, which makes for a perfect GRE-type study method.

Selecting the “Subjects” tab reveals trivia in many more areas–art, chemical symbols, Spanish, Italian, French, German and more. I particularly enjoyed (and exhausted) the supply of English grammar questions–I wish I’d known about it while I was taking my (grammar-focused) journalism courses!

FreeRice is a great way to brush up on something you might have studied in the past or learn something new, while actually helping to make a difference.

Google yourself: you may be telling the world what you’re doing

December 7, 2009 Social Networking, Web 2.0 Comments Off

According to a New York Times article published today, Google will be integrating public Facebook statuses into its search results. Private Facebook profiles won’t be displayed in the search results, but of course, Facebook wants you to share more information publicly.

“If Facebook is able to prod more users into sharing more content publicly, then it could rival Twitter in importance among real-time sources,” writes Marshall Kirkpatrick, author of the above New York Times article. As of October 2009, Twitter had approximately 18 million users, though author Laura Wolfe claims that 60% of Twitter users abandon their accounts within the first month. Facebook’s statistics page boasts 350 million Facebookers. If even 10 percent of its users’ statuses are public, well, Twitter could see a run for its money.

The CTLT liaisons are the bridge between teaching and technology. The liaison group collaborates primarily with University of Richmond faculty to effectively incorporate technology into the teaching and learning processes. We deal with diverse technologies, and are happy to work with any skill level.

Jon Messer Corrina Waxman