Tag Archives: software

Flipping the Assesment with a Document Camera

I like small but novel ideas. I count this use of video recording to deliver coursework feedback to students among them:

Rather than simply returning assignments with a bunch of red writing all over the paper (which a giant grade a the top – the only things students really look at), instructors can use video capture to mark the assignment while also delivering critical feedback, suggestions for improvements, and justification for the grade. Creating a more engaging way of delivering feedback to students – making it more of a discussion, making it more interactive, and making it more of a learning opportunity – are all good things.


Information Literacy and Inverted Classrooms

I’m hearing more and more about inverted (or “flipped”) classrooms as an emerging teaching model in higher education. Today, this Ed Tech article, “Colleges Go Proactive with Flipped Classrooms” really got me thinking more about this technique, and how we might apply it to information literacy instruction. As the article explains:

In a flipped classroom, professors don’t lecture in class. Students watch recordings of lectures online as homework. They learn the material on their own time, freeing up class time for collaborative activities, such as group projects and classroom discussions.

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OLA Postered

I’ve been trying for oh, the last TWO WEEKS to write a post about all the fun and glorious things I did at the OLA Superconference 2010, but I have some writer’s block or something.

So instead, I’ll discuss all the fun and glorious things I presented on, at the conference”s poster session.

Me and my buddy Angela Hamilton (Science Librarian at York), presented our lovely poster on the topic, “Why screencasting? The benefits of interactive online tutorials”. I say it’s lovely because Angela designed it and she made it look far, far prettier than anything I’d have been able to churn out. Bravo to her.

The poster focused on our combined work creating Adobe Captivate videos, with a lit-review we did of existing articles on the topic of screencasting video use in librarians. In fact, there is a lot of interesting coverage of this topic and it informed not only the contents of our poster, but the way I approach my own video-making.

We wanted it to be interactive, so we had a laptop set up with Captivate installed, to show attendees just how easy the whole thing is. It was fun to demonstrate in about one minute how you can capture your activities on screen, and turn it into a published video. We also had another laptop set up with our finished videos running on it — videos like “How to use CINAHL” or “How to cite properly”. That was cool too, because it shows off the bell’s and whistle’s of the software, and makes us look like competent, tech-savvy lie-berrians. Which we are, of course.

If you are going to be participating in a poster session: Bring lots and lots and lots of handouts. Why do people love the handouts so much? They were like, stealing them right off the table. We ran out. Lesson learned: More handouts. We had about 40 and that wasn’t enough.

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Video Killed the Radio Star.

Adobe CaptivateI get to make some Adobe Captivate videos at work and it is fun! I feel like Steven Spielberg. I sit in my office with my headphones on, murmuring, “Highlight Box goes her to underscore the name of the webpage.” And people look through the doorway and think I’m doing complex technical things. I’ve switched my office chair to a director’s chair and have taken to wearing a beret. The students mock me, but I think they’re just jealous of my genius?!

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O.A., eh oh.

As I’ve mentioned before, I was Managing Editor of the Faculty of Information Quarterly at school, but in my new capacity as an academic library, I serve on the York University Libraries’ Scholarly Communications Committee. All of a sudden, instead of just complaining about the inherent evil of journal vendors, I actually have to learn about tangible issues! Ah crap!Journals

One of the movements sweeping the world of academic publishing is the Open Access movement. I didn’t realllly get it until I attended some sessions on the topic at the CLA Annual Conference. And then had to explain it to non-librarians (the true test of knowledge).

I had to sum up my job to parents, and in doing so, found myself explaining in the simplest terms possible, the whole “Open Access” movement. I told them this:

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Two neat ways to organize your web stuff: Zotero and Digsby

Over the Christmas break, I’ve gotten cozy with a couple neat applications that I thought I’d share. There’s nothing like getting all your web-based stuff organized over the holidays to brace for the busy-ness that lies ahead in the New Year. It’s like cleaning out your closet and making sense of the stuff that piles up doing the year. Organizational bliss!

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I found a website that makes me websites. It’s called Weebly (www.weebly.com), and it is the easiest way I have found to make nice, pretty websites that do stuff. Weebly is a great service for those among us who want to make dynamic websites but don’t have a clue about coding. The website is created by dragging and clicking the various elements on to multiple pages. It supposed basic stuff like images, text, links, and flickr photo albums, YouTube videos and Google maps. It’s super cool! I made a fake website for the Master of Information Studies Student Council: http://missc.weebly.com/

You can also pick from a couple dozen different designs and layouts, and can add as many pages as you want. Time magazine names it one of the 50 best websites of 2007 because of its ease of use and polished look: See it here. And if Time magazine says it’s good, who am I to argue? ING is on the list too, and I love that website like a child. A child holding my entire savings.

Anyway, check out weebly if you want a user-friendly website that makes cute websites!