"Blackboard is a life savior, before, during and after teaching. Blackboard is the hub that we all use to communicate throughout the semester in order to ensure the success of my pre-service and in-service teacher candidates and graduate students. The built-in tools are useful and accessible, especially as a Latinx Dis/Abled teacher educator so I can provide the most universally designed learning platform and experience for all of my students. I am so grateful to the IT team at UNI for their unwavering support as issues come up to trouble-shoot and resolve them. During the first few weeks of each semester students get oriented to our Blackboard and we make it work for us so everyone is able to have an accessible learning experience throughout the semester."
David Hernández Saca, UNI Faculty Member
"The major reason I use Blackboard Learning Management System is to support student success. It enhances access, accessibility, and ease of assessment by consolidating everything in one place.
Nandita Gurjar, UNI Faculty Member
"I use Poll Everywhere in a few different ways. Often, I will use it at the beginning of class to get students thinking and to gauge their current level of understanding about the day's concepts and topic. Because it is anonymous, students are able to respond without fear of being wrong. That's really important. I will also use Poll Everywhere during a lesson as a kind of formative assessment, to see how students' thinking is evolving as we work through the lesson, and as a way to jumpstart a discussion. Finally, I sometimes use it at the end of class so that students can see for themselves how their thinking has progressed since the beginning of class. I really like the variety of items available in Poll Everywhere. Sometimes I use multiple choice types of items, but I also often use the open-ended ones to get students' ideas up on the screen. I have found it to be a good interactive tool for keeping students intellectually engaged in class."
Dana Atwood-Blaine, UNI Faculty Member
"Blackboard is the cornerstone of my course. I have become so reliant on its features that everything for my course is embedded within Blackboard. I can build my course on Blackboard where students receive a detailed list of weekly activities, assignments, and tests. If I want to alter a few assignments, I can copy for future courses. Once the course has been copied, I can make changes to the items of my choice and keep everything else without having to start all over. Blackboard is a great tool and overall I am pleased with this application! "
Irenea Walker, UNI Faculty Member
"I love Panopto for how it has changed how I use my face-to-face time with
I use Panopto to pre-record "lectures" that students watch before they
come to class. This means we spend less of our face-to-face time
conveying background information and more time interacting with examples
of the materials (the "flipped classroom"). Students spend much more time
interacting with each other and the content of my courses. Better yet,
they do so in a controlled environment. I am able to move the points in
the course where students hit hurdles to be in my classroom with
assistance from me or their peers rather than in their dorm rooms when
they are alone. Students appear to complete the course with much deeper
experience with the content and not just surface level knowledge."
Ben Schafer - UNI Faculty Member
I've been turning on the Panopto recording software to record my class lectures for the past few years. I've found that it frees up the students from scribbling notes to become more fully involved in the present classroom experience. Students know they can check the videos later for any specific notes they have missed, and by doing this, I've noticed a decrease in the amount of basic questions asked during my office hours. In other words, Panopto saves me time as a professor by not having to answer basic questions about concepts I've already covered.
In the last semester, I also started using Panopto to give video replies to more advanced questions students ask me over email. The advantage to video replies is that I can give more complete answers to questions, and if enough students have the same question, I can send the video link out to the entire class.
Finally, during snow days or sickness, I can often quickly edit a video or two from the previous semester to allow the students to continue learning even if class can't meet. The bottom line is that Panopto both saves me time as an instructor and adds value for the students.
Quotes from my last two semesters of student evaluations:
“I really liked the recordings they were lifesavers in some situations and providing all the material really helped.”
“Professor Diesburg made the class increasingly accessible with an easy to read text book, video lectures, and power points…”
"Providing lecture content online greatly helped. If I misunderstood something I could always go back to the lecture video and review it or look at the slides."
(From instructor’s main strengths) “Answering your questions in a clear way. Video emails really helped on the homework!”
(From instructor’s main strengths) "Willingness to use technology within the classroom to help with studying (recording lectures)."
Sarah Diesburg - UNI Faculty Member
"I adopted Panopto to enable me to deliver content in emergencies, but have found that it vastly increases my flexibility in delivering content to my students as a matter of course and that it gives me the freedom to devote classroom time to a wider range of educational activities while still delivering the same course content. And my experience persuades me that making Panopto recordings of all my lectures available to my students improves the students' learning of those lectures' contents, and may even improve their attentiveness in class."
Bob Dise - UNI Faculty Member
“I use Turnitin to review major assignments in both my online and face-to-face classes, and have done so for eight or more years. Using Turnitin allows me to better educate my students about ethics, plagiarism, and writing skills. Turnitin.com easily identifies lower-level plagiarism, such as mistakes in proper citation format, as well as incidents of higher-level plagiarism, such as copying paragraphs or a page of material from other sources. I use these initial mistakes as learning opportunities to remind students of their ethical responsibilities, and to help them build their writing skills as university students.” - Gayle Rhineberger-Dunn, UNI Faculty Member
"I adopted Poll Everywhere about 7 years ago to help students engage more fully during class. I had used i-clickers before but always dealt with students forgetting their device or giving their device to a friend. Poll Everywhere can be used with any device -- laptop, tablet or phone. A student only needs a basic cell phone in order to participate. The questions I use help provide feedback to me to see what concepts the students might not clearly understand. I give the students a score for the semester based on not only participation but correct answers. Bonus points are awarded for a higher percentage of participation. Besides questions over content, I use the anonymous questions for various survey items to get feedback on projects, etc."
Amy Igou, UNI Faculty Member
"I find Google Drive programs like Docs and Slides to be tremendously helpful in enabling group work in class. Students in a group can work on a single document simultaneously, they can work asynchronously outside of class, and students who are absent can check in to find out what they’ve missed. In addition, all students in a group have a record of the group’s work so that they can refer to the material later. Thus students are not only dependent on their own ability to catch everything, take good notes, or recall later. Finally, as the instructor, I require students to share their documents with me. As a result, I can check in with groups both in class and after class to see where all groups are in their assignments. Google Drive programs have elevated the quality of collaborative work in my classes."
Kim Baker, UNI Faculty Member