Earlier this month, Mark DeLonge and I presented at the 2019 ITC eLearning Conference at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Conference Center in Las Vegas. Our session, called “Herding Cats and Teaching Them a Trick or Two: Strategies for Finding your Piece of the Faculty Development Pie” had a packed room of attendees who happily participated in our crowdsourcing activity to create a Google Doc of faculty PD ideas. We also made some connections with faculty and academic technology specialists from other institutions who would like to collaborate with us and “borrow” some of our ideas, like Summer Shorts.
Mark and I took a divide and conquer approach to the conference, attending different sessions to get the most out of it. Below are some of the key takeaways and ideas that we brought back from Vegas:
- Create ZOOM classroom kits so that instructors can check out a bag with everything needed to run a ZOOM meeting from the classroom. Bring in a guest speaker or connect with students unable to make it to class due to weather or other circumstances.
- Don’t like putting your picture in Moodle? Create a Bitmoji that resembles you to use for class communication to increase your social presence online.
- Print you class roster out and keep it by your computer. When students communicate with you make notes about them on the printed roster to refer to when communicating with them during the remainder of the semester (Car broke down, Lives in Central Lake, Cares for younger sister, Big Harry Potter fan, etc.)
- Create “snackable” chunks of content for students to consume online.
- Use Google Tours with students to create Virtual Reality projects for humanities, literature, or history courses; assess students on the narrative/text that goes with each spot in the tour.
- Bridging digital islands for online students by creating video podcasts to keep students “on course” through short videos about course goals and tasks; also give students access to college skills through Life Skills Video Series. Lori Frear, from Wake Technical Community College, won an award for her online course using these ideas. She uses Intromate iPad app and Green Screen iPad app for the video podcast creation.
- Rowan-Cabarrus CC (North Carolina) does an accessibility summer institute (in May) where faculty get to experience what it is like to use different technology as a student needing accommodations. It is called a “Walk-a-Mile” demonstration.
- Explore interdisciplinary projects across online and face-to-face courses. For example, one institution does a “Cloth to Counter” project to create Smart Clothing (Internet Of Things clothing). It involves computer and electronic students, art students, business students, marketing students, and a makerspace.
Get in touch with either of us to further explore the above ideas. Viva Las Vegas!