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Instructional Design Blog

Instructional Design Blog

Teaching and Technology Resources

Grading using iAnnotate from Wired Campus

(iPads, Flipped Classroom) Permanent link

The Chronicle blog Wired Campus did a great piece this morning on grading using iAnnotate.  iAnnotate is one of several great document editing and feedback tools.  I'd suggest you take a look at the article, and consider using one of the following apps if you are interested:

Happy grading!

Quick Tip - iPad Screenshots

(iPads) Permanent link

At yesterday's cohort meeting, we discussed ways that remote whiteboards like AirSketch could be used to demonstrate concepts while the instructor roams the room.  One of the most useful tools on the iPad to use in conjunction with a remote whiteboard is the screenshot function.  

At any time and in any app, you can take a screenshot or a picture of your iPad's screen by pressing the power and home button at the same time.  This takes an image of your screen and saves it to your photo roll.  If you find an image on the web, a graphic in an app, or some text you'd like to capture and annotate, this is an easy way to get it quickly.

Here is a short video I made on how to do this:

Video Tools Roundup(1)

(iPads, Flipped Classroom) Permanent link

Instructional videos are a great way to connect with your students and provide feedback.  There are tools available that can provide a recordable whiteboard, a recorded PowerPoint presentation, a screencast of how to navigate through a website, or recorded notes on a student's paper.  Below are a roundup of those tools for any kind of video response. 

Camtasia and Screenflow are two powerful screencasting, video recording and editing softwares.  They allow you to record your screen, annotate video with arrow and text, trim sections of video, record powerpoints, and more.  There is a feature in Camtasia that allows you to record from your webcam at the same time as you capture a screencast, letting your students see your face as you present content.  You can also export into a variety of formats.  These tools are available in the Media Production lab in the Learning Commons.

WeVideo and Mozilla Popcorn Maker are two online video production tools.  WeVideo provides similar tools to Camtasia, but for free.  The limitor for WeVideo is that you can only produce items to YouTube or Google Drive.  You can't take the file with you as easily as a tool like Screenflow or Camtasia.  Mozilla Popcorn Maker lets you annotate and collect video that already exists online.  You can insert pop-ups, loop sections, add Google maps or images, and create an interesting new piece from existing video.

ScreenChomp is a simple and intuitive iPad app that provides a recordable screen or whiteboard.  It truly works like a recordable whiteboard with an eraser, three colored markers, and a useful quick wipe feature.  You can insert images and rotate or skew them very easily by using two fingers.  Recordings are automatically uploaded to Screenchomp.com or to Facebook if you log in.  This would be an excellent app for sharing quick explanations, or if you would like to have students explain a concept in class.  This app is free.

Explain Everything is one of my favorite iPad apps because it is so robust.  You can insert images from the camera, your iPad’s photos, DropBox, or Evernote.  You can record one slide at a time, or continue through multiple slides and narrate each one.  You can also insert special shapes, write with different colors, or type text on the screen.  It also lets you delete objects you’ve inserted, which is helpful if you decide not to use a particular element.    Finally, and most helpful, you can export your movie or project file to email, YouTube, DropBox, or Evernote.  All video save in MP4 format, which can be viewed on any device.  This app is definitely worth the $2.99 price tag.

Coach's Eye is an iPad app originally designed for coaches to provide feedback to athletes.  You record someone with the app, and can then insert voice-over commentary, highlight sections, and slow down portions of the video for analysis.  Instructors have used this to provide feedback on student speeches in past cohorts.

Depending on what you are looking for, you have lots of options when it comes to video feedback.  If you have other tools or resources to share, please do so in the comments.

MERLOT for Apps and Multimedia

(iPads, Flipped Classroom) Permanent link

In working with iPads or flipped classrooms, one of the biggest challenges is finding a source of vetted resources.  You can use a search engine or the app store all day long, but still struggle to find resources with an academic bent and meaningful review.

This is where MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resources for Learning and Online Teaching) comes in.   As stated on their website, “MERLOT is a free and open peer reviewed collection of online teaching and learning materials and faculty-developed services contributed and used by an international education community.”  MERLOT’s library of open educational multimedia resources is a great place to research reviewed and vetted materials. 

I used MERLOT’s advanced search page to experiment with finding resources.  I limited my search to the Health Sciences community, and further limited it by Health Sciences and Science and Technology.  There is also a limit for iOS Tablet apps if you prefer.  While I didn’t try this limit, you can specifically look for PowerPoint presentations, videos, Moodle course packages, and other formats as well.


Limiting to peer reviewed content is also an option, but may limit your results significantly.


The results screen is easy to navigate, and offers additional limiting categories on the left.


By selecting a record, you can get more detail on an item and see if there are any comments or reviews.


The Go to Resource link sends you to the resource itself.

Do you have any other sources you’ve found helpful in finding good educational materials?  Feel free to post your responses in the comments.

Classroom Tools: Socrative 2.0

(iPads, Flipped Classroom) Permanent link

Whether you are flipping your classroom or just looking for quick feedback from students, Socrative 2.0 is a great tool to use.  Socrative (pronounced sew-crah-tive) is a web-based live polling tool designed by and for educators.  Students and faculty can use Socrative from any web-accessible device by going to http://www.socrative.com.  


Here's how it works:

  1. An instructor creates a free Socrative account on the website or through the iPad/Android app.  Each teacher is assigned a unique "room number.
  2. Instructors create quizzes, or use one of three pre-programmed activities: quick question, space race, or exit ticket.
  3. Students go to the Socrative website on any device (or download the app) and enter the room number.
  4. When the instructor starts the quiz activity, students can answer questions, and responses are immediately view-able on the instructor's device.
  5. At the end of the quiz activity, instructors can ask Socrative to send a report to their email for later assessment.

Questions can be created easily on the fly, but you can also create them ahead of time.  Socrative also has an easy-to-use Excel template for importing quizzes.


For more information on Socrative, you can view their demonstration video and their user guide.  If you'd like to try it out and need help getting started, contact Chad, Vicke, or Gretel.

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