5 Tech Tools for Spring 2015

1024px-Five (1)Welcome back! For this semester we are working on an exciting new tool, have a great lineup of workshops, and, notably, preparing for the early opening of Shain Library! To stay updated on everything ed tech at Connecticut College, sign up to receive emails when we add a new post by clicking “Follow” on the left and entering your email address.

Our first post is our top 5 technology tools to help you in spring 2015. We selected these based on our experience and your questions or comments. If you have questions about using any of these tools, contact your instructional technology liaison.

  1. Google Drive
    Google Drive is great for storing documents and having them available wherever there is an internet connection. But because everyone at Conn has access to Drive, it also provides a powerful platform for document sharing and collaboration. Read how students spontaneously employed it in a group project, or imagine if students shared working drafts or bibliographies with you and allowed you to comment on their work before turning it in.
  2. Moodle
    If you don’t use Moodle to share your syllabus with students, post assignment instructions, collect assignments digitally, design and deliver quizzes, or as a platform for after class discussion, this is your semester! Almost 80% of classes use Moodle. If you’d like to think about using more robust features or how Moodle might help you better achieve your course goals, let us know and we can help.
  3. Interactive Whiteboards
    An interactive whiteboard can function as a traditional whiteboard, a projector screen, or a computer screen that can be controlled by touching or writing on the panel. When used effectively, interactive whiteboards can provide new opportunities for student engagement with class material that traditional whiteboards or projectors do not. Use the SMART and eno boards to save notes and illustrations written on the board and distribute to students or use again in a future class. Annotate images or text and save the annotations. Ask students to conduct live online database searches and evaluate information they find. Or, work collaboratively on design projects, spreadsheets, and documents. SMARTboards are installed in Blaustein 207 & 208; eno Boards are installed Olin 107, New London Hall 204 & 214.
  4. Evernote
    Use Evernote to collect, save, access and share notes, articles, ideas, pictures, websites, audio recordings, screenshots or files. Everything in your Evernote account syncs to all your devices and is searchable. I love it as a place to keep articles and websites that I want to revisit at a later date (when writing a blog post or preparing for a workshop, for example). Hear how Karen Gonzalez Rice uses Evernote.
  5. Socrative
    Socrative is a web-based student response system that allows students to “enter” a virtual room and answer questions you pose. It is free to you and to students, and sends a report of student responses after class. Use it to solicit student feedback to improve teaching, to identify students’ preconceptions and assumptions about course material, to generate more diverse discussions, or to improve social cohesion in the learning community by making all students feel valued as participants, not just the outspoken few. Read our previous post about students response systems.

Image credit: By Mc95 at en.wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia (Original Image)) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

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