Digi Know: Office 365 has a new application: Yammer

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Social media and networking is a big priority in most people’s lives in modern society. This is clear to see with everyone being logged in online, posting tweets, sharing photos and generally being connected all the time. It has never been easier to get in touch with someone.

This is why the University of Derby’s Office 365 Suites new application is excellent for students and lecturers to stay in touch and connected. This app is called Yammer and is a private, social and collaborative network. It makes it easier for students to work together in teams and to stay up to date on what others are working on. Think of Yammer as Facebook but for university related work.

Yammer has an easy to use interface with lots of different functionality to make the learning experience, while you are at the University of Derby, a pleasant and fulfilling one.  Functionality includes: instant messaging (making it easy to keep in touch with friends, colleagues and lecturers), group creation (you can either make private or public groups which can be used as a closed group if working on projects or an open group for things such as deadline notifications etc.), notification box (these notifications, when enabled, will also pop up in the bottom of your screen so you never miss out on important information again), and lots of other useful functionality that is designed to make the learning process quicker and easier.

Hopefully both students and lectures alike will make good use of this software and as a result create high quality work quicker and easier whilst also having the freedom to be innovative and have fun at the same time.

You can access Yammer via the University Of Derby’s UDO page. Have fun and stay connected!

Digi Know: How to Be a Digital Scholar

The world of research is growing bigger, faster, thanks largely to innovations in technology. At Derby our academics are using learning technologies in the classroom to teach in more dynamic ways, from in-class polling and quizzes to producing video case studies and creating virtual reality work environments. Resources such as Online Reading Lists and Box of Broadcasts are making it possible to compile content in a way that is responsive to our ever-changing and fast developing news cycles. We can use Open Access repositories to find research more readily publications and data that may have previously been unavailable to us or outside of our library subscriptions. Social Media is being used inside and outside the classroom to communicate and inform debates, and ever-evolving literature databases are making it easier for the online student or academic to find and manage their academic references.

The Digital Derby project is shining a spotlight on all of this good practice at Derby, and revealing ways in which staff can develop their  own digital capabilities across six identified elements

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Credit: JISC Digital Capabilities Framework https://digitalcapability.jiscinvolve.org/wp/

Where does this leave the researcher? A couple of months ago I blogged about ORCiD, a tool to aid the academic researcher who publishes and wants to be identifiable and discoverable online. Since then I have been reading up more on the broader term of Digital Scholarship (one of the six elements pictured above) and produced a short presentation on what it is and how some of the professional services at Derby can support the academic researcher who wants to become more equipped, digitally. See the video below –

https://derby.cloud.panopto.eu/Panopto/Pages/Embed.aspx?id=b7a00010-7a83-457e-9d28-81b497987c56&v=1

Don’t take it from me, I’m a humble Learning Technology Advisor / Librarian! If you’re interested in finding out more about being a Digital Academic, read this blog post from academic Jenny Delaselle.

 

Appy Monday – Snapchat

What is Snapchat?

Snapchat is a mobile messaging app used to share photos, videos, text and drawings but only for a brief amounts of time.

What can it do?

  • Send videos and pictures for free
  • Add a ‘Story’ – a 24 hour collection of your photos and videos which you can broadcast to the world, or just your followers.
  • Allows you to live video or audio chat with friends
  • Access pages such as BuzzFeed, National Geographic and Sky News (along with many more)

Download it now

Download it from the App Store or  Google Play Store on your device

How could it be used for learning and teaching?

  • Engage students through a Snapchat Q&A
  • A 24 story which can act as a reminder to students for deadlines
  • Bitesize lessons and tips
  • Sharing ideas in an easy way to communicate

Short Task:

  • Download Snapchat
  • Sign up and make an account
  • Take a picture and try swiping through filters to add the time
  • Share it to your story

Important note

Before using any mobile application or online service please check the terms and conditions to ensure you are aware of the implications of using the service. In particular, look out for items covering data security, ownership of content and public/private sharing options.

Further support

If you would like further support to get an idea of how you could use Snapchat within learning and teaching, please contact the Technology Enhanced Learning team on tel@derby.ac.uk or ext 1865.

Appy Monday – Sketches

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What is Sketches? 

Tayasui Sketches is a drawing app which enables you to draw out your notes, doodles and diagrams on your iPad or iPhone and organise these into collections.

What can it do? 

  • Enable you to draw electronic sketches using a variety of different drawing tools and a wide range of colours.
  • Use patterns to fill large areas of the picture.
  • Add text and shapes to add further meaning.
  • Share your drawings via email or social media tools such as Facebook and Flickr.
  • Add photos with your camera as a background to an image.

Download it now

How could it be used for learning, teaching and assessment?

  • To take notes during a lecture or seminar combining text, drawings and diagrams to represent key points.
  • To create visual images which help to break-up heavily text based learning resources or presentations.
  • Challenge students to represent a concept or idea using drawings only and share this in class or on a shared area in Course Resources such as a discussion board.

Short task: 

  • Download the app.
  • Open the app and try drawing the University of Derby logo.
  • Save the picture.
  • Email this to yourself.

Important note

Before using any mobile application or online service please check the terms and conditions to ensure you are aware of the implications of using the service. In particular, look out for items covering data security, ownership of content and public/private sharing options.

Further support

If you would like further support to get an idea of how you could use Sketches within learning and teaching, please contact the Technology Enhanced Learning team on tel@derby.ac.uk or ext 1865.

Sharing audio for peer review and submitting for assessment in Course Resources using Media Gallery

Matt Le Mare. Creative Expressive Therapies, College of Health and Social Care

Matt, who ran the Music and Musicianship module in Spring 2016, wanted a way for students to share their formative music assignment with each other within the Course Resources module so they could do peer feedback. He also wanted the students to submit their final assignment, which comprised a piece of music, through Course Resources.

Matt comments that Media Gallery “…works for me as I wanted to electronically move quickly from assessing audio to text and then back again instead of trolling through usb stick, CDs and DVDs, then reading students’ paper submission, then having to give the feedback on paper. It works for the external examiner because she/he can do the same. For students, they can submit electronically, which is what they wanted to do. They can share it if they wish. It was easily set up, just works, and ‘saves’ time!”.

Sharing media within Course Resources

Media Gallery (Kaltura) was the perfect solution for his requirements. First, using the Media Gallery feature, students were able to upload iterations of their music and publish them within the module.

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A view of the Media Gallery containing students’ formative work

Media Gallery also has a comment feature akin to social media, which allows attributed comments to be posted.

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Submitting media for assignments

Mat also wanted students to submit their final piece of music through Course Resources. Previously dealing with media would have required receiving CDs, DVDs or USB flash memory drives with all of the associated management and potential for damage or loss that entails – especially when required by external examiners.

With Media Gallery, students were able to upload their music and submit it directly through Course Resources “Assignment” where it was safely stored and accessible only to the tutors. External moderators are also able to view the work directly through Course Resources, so there is no more worry about sending off media in the post.

media submission music and muscianship

Summary

Media Gallery provided a simple and robust solution for Mat’s needs. It also enhanced the student experience as they were able to share their music and get feedback from each other which is kept only to the group enrolled within the module. This effectively extended the classroom into an asynchronous space offering more opportunity for students and tutors to interact outside of physical contact time.

The submission of media within Course Resources solved the problem of access and security of assessed work. Pieces were available immediately within Course Resources to tutors and moderators, and management of physical submissions was eliminated.

Recording trainee teachers’ discussions using Panopto’s student Dropbox with group view

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Dr Bill Esmond. Senior Lecturer in Initial Teacher Education: Post 14. College of Education, University of Derby.

Bill’s cohort of trainee FE teachers were considering the current curriculum and the gaps which exist in the teaching of the subject. They had an introductory seminar to consider the issues and then, in small groups, were required to create a video of their discussion which was recorded into a panopto Dropbox. A Dropbox is a special folder that allows students to record presentations to using the Panopto recorder. It can be set to be private so that only the tutor and student can see their recording, or group view, so that everyone in the cohort can view them all. In this case Bill chose group view so that the students could see each others’ work.

A training session for the students went through the basics of Panopto recording, and solved technical problems with installation on students’ computers. For many, this was a new experience, and as Bill says:

“This was clearly a challenging experience for everyone concerned: even trainee teachers are nervous about recording their ideas on shared video, no matter what they might do on [Facebook]. And, yes, there were technical issues: I think most of the Apple people struggled to upload, some sound quality didn’t come out well… and the quality of the medium wasn’t as good as the media teachers would like!”.

However, despite these teething troubles, the result was generally positive.

“But the point of the exercise was really less about the product (the video-clip) than about the process of getting them to discuss ideas in sufficient depth that they felt able to make a video about it. I couldn’t count the number who said to me afterwards how useful they had found the activity because it had made them think about and discuss the issues in far greater depth than they would have done for an open-ended task (and, I suspect, a poster or [Powerpoint]).

So, I think this technology has some potential as a tool for interactive, relatively autonomous learning just as much as it has for the one-way transmission of lectures.”

In summary, although Panopto’s main feature is recording traditional lectures, it contains an option which has the potential to engage students with material in a different way. Analytics of the students’ recordings shows that many of the presentations had at least five unique viewers which means that peers were attending to each other’s’ work.

Using videos in forums for an online course’s student formative assessment

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Yasu Kotera (left), Wendy David. UDOL Online Counselling. University of Derby Online (UDOL).

Students from around the world were studying on the University of Derby Online course in Counselling Skills. Part of the assessment involves students recording their counselling sessions for tutors to view and feedback on. Course Resources is limited in the way it handles large files, especially videos, so Yasu and Wendy were pleased to use Media Gallery (Kaltura) as a way of sharing video. In this case, students recorded a short video, usually on their phone, and shared it by embedding it into a forum. This allowed tutors and peers to comment on the video.

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In this screenshot, the uploaded video is displayed over the forum which contains a dialogue between the student and tutor.

Yasu comments “I manage the counselling programmes at the University of Derby Online Learning. Our programmes include video assessments, where students record their counselling sessions and the tutors and peers make comments on them. We used to mail those DVDs to evaluate their counselling skills, but as the programme expanded, it just became unfeasible. Then we started to use a file transfer system, but it still took a lot of time to up / download the videos. We had been trying to find a scalable and secure way to conduct the video assessments, and heard about Media Gallery. Media Gallery enables students upload their video easily in a secure way, and the tutors and peers can see and make comments to improve their counselling skills. This is really crucial in the counselling studies online. We are planning to use Media Gallery more in our programmes

Appy Monday – IF (IFTTT)

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What is it?

If (Ifttt) stands for If This Then That and enables you to create simple connections between different online services which can help you to automate some everyday tasks. For instance a simple ‘recipe’ could be that whenever you publish a blog post Ifttt automatically sends a Tweet telling others about this on your Twitter feed. There are many different combinations of actions you can make, it all depends upon which services you use and the actions you would want to automate.

 

What can it do?

It would be difficult to list everything this app can do but as described above it can automate some every day tasks to help you to manage and share your online resources more effectively. It links to over 200 different online services and provides thousands of different combinations of actions. So for instance not only can you link your blog to automatically tweet when a new post is published, you can also set out how you want the tweet to look and include specific hashtags.

Download it now… 

How could it be used for learning, teaching and assessment?

There are many possibilities about how this tool could be used for learning, teaching and assessment but here are just a few ideas:

  • Automatically post a tweet when a new blog post is published.
  • Receive an email when a new story appears on a popular news website.
  • Enable the tweets you like to be sent to your note taking app (e.g. Evernote or OneNote).
  • Send Tweets using a specific hashtag sent to a story on your Storify.
  • Create a Trello card for each of the meetings you have in your Office365 calendar.

Short task:

This task requires you to already have an account on Twitter:

  • Download the IF mobile app
  • Create an account and sign in
  • Browse the recipes to get an idea of what might be possible searching for the online services you use (e.g. Twitter).
  • Think of a hashtag which you use regularly.
  • Set up a recipe which builds a Twitter list of users who have used a particular hashtag in their tweets.
  • Save the recipe and make sure it is turned on.
  • Get others to start using this hashtag in their tweets.
  • Watch your Twitter list grow.

Important note:

Before using any mobile application or online service please check the terms and conditions to ensure you are aware of the implications of using the service. In particular, look out for items covering data security, ownership of content and public/private sharing options.

Useful resources:

Appy Monday – Instagram

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What is Instagram?

Instagram is a photo and video sharing social network app. You can share your photos to Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Swarm and Flicker. It is available form iTunes, Google Play, with limited access online. It also has some nice simple photo editing tools and filters.

What can it do?

  • Share your photos and videos by searches through #tag, location, subject or user.
  • Search for photos by location and subject, user or #tag
  • You can follow other users
  • Edit photos with simple tools and filters
  • Upload your photos and videos to other social networks

Download it now

You can access it on the web or via the mobile app on Apple and Android.

How could it be used for learning, teaching and assessment?

  • The location tags on photos are ideal for documenting field trips
  • Share your photos and videos, is a good way for students to publicise their work and get feedback.
  • Searching for local photos is a way to get an idea of what is in an area.

Short task:

  • Create an account for Instagram or use your Facebook account to login.
  • Take a picture with the App.
  • Adjust the image
  • Apply a filter
  • Share the photo on Facebook or Twitter
  • Follow some of your friends.

Important note

Before using any mobile application or online service please check the terms and conditions to ensure you are aware of the implications of using the service. In particular, look out for items covering data security, ownership of content and public/private sharing options.

Further support

If you would like further support to get an idea of how you could use Instagram within learning and teaching, please contact the Technology Enhanced Learning team on tel@derby.ac.uk or ext 1865.

Appy Monday – Storify

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What is it?

Storify is an online tool for aggregating and curating social media content, allowing you to create stories from timelines such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.

 

What can it do?

Storify can create ‘Stories’ which feature relevant and curated content from different social media platforms. A Story could include a video from YouTube, a collection of tweets, a Flickr image or any combination of social media items.

Download it now

You can access Storify on the web by going to: https://storify.com/

How could it be used for learning, teaching and assessment?

  • Create a research log
  • Create an annotated bibliography
  • Could be used as a presentation tool
  • Create a digital story of an event
  • Collate digital classroom resources

Short task:

Create an annotated collection of internet learning resources.

  • In Storify, create a ‘New Story’ .
  • Give your story a title and description relevant to your subject area.
  • Use the search bar to search for relevant content and drag items into your story.
  • Underneath each item add annotations if required.
  • Publish your story and share the link with your students.

Important note

Before using any mobile application or online service please check the terms and conditions to ensure you are aware of the implications of using the service. In particular, look out for items covering data security, ownership of content and public/private sharing options.

Further support

If you would like further support to get an idea of how you could use Storify within learning and teaching, please contact the Technology Enhanced Learning team on tel@derby.ac.uk or ext 1865.

Useful resources

Sue Beckingham from Sheffield Hallam University has created a useful guide on using Storify for teaching and Learning:

Using Storify as a curation tool to build digital narratives