Friday, December 12, 2014

2014-12-12 Instructional Technology Newsletter

Instructional Technology  News and Useful Tips.
December 12, 2014

Upcoming Instructional Technology Events

Mobile Learning in Higher Education
Thursday, December 18
1:00 - 2:00
Online at:
Mobile learning in higher education is a topic that, like mobile devices themselves, is ever-evolving. Come and learn how mobile learning fits in with the online and hybrid courses at Elmhurst College, and how instructors can make the most of these tools as they continue to teach in an increasingly mobile manner.

Presented by Elmhurst College School of Professional Studies

News From Information Services

No News To Report This Week

Instructional Technology News

TechSmith Adds Knowmia

TechSmith, makers of Camtasia, have always had a presence in education, but they have recently magnified their efforts in this area with the purchase of Knowmia.  Knowmia is really two things.  First, it is a web resource of tens of thousands of video lessons in nearly all areas of study.  While most of these lessons are targeted below the level of Higher Ed, there are many that would be appropriate for college level classes.  

Of greater interest from an Instructional Technology point of view is the second aspect of Knowmia, it is a suite of enabling technologies which help instructors create individual online instructional modules and then incorporate those modules into a course.  I will be presenting workshops on using Knowmia in Spring of 2015.

Google Hangouts On Air

Google Hangouts On Air (HOA) are once again available in our Google Apps domain.  Google Hangouts have always been available, but now we have the “on air” version back as well.  There are a couple of differences between the two usages.  Regular Hangouts are more aptly called video chats or video calls, and Google actually called them that for a while.  With Google Hangouts, you can ring people’s computers or Hangouts-enabled phones wherever they are.  You can add people into the “call” after it has started.  But it is private to those people who have been added in through invitation or a published link.

Hangouts On Air is more like a webinar tool.  The session is broadcast on YouTube as it happens and is, therefore, automatically recorded.  You can broadcast it publicly or limit it to specific invitees.  The call owner also has control over some of the presentation aspects.  

Both types of Hangout allow side-bar chats, desktop sharing, document collaboration and watching videos together.

I have used both types of Hangouts and will be presenting a workshop on their use in the Spring term.


Quizzes or Questions in Videos

Several instructors have asked about adding questions to videos for use in quizzes or for highlighting aspects of a lesson.  A version of this capability used to be available directly through YouTube using a combination of types of annotations.  However, the “pause” annotation type has been removed, though if you have inserted them into a video already, they will continue to operate.

There are two services that can do this for you, and each has its quirks and advantages.  They are EduCannon and EDpuzzle.  Both allow you to take a video from several sources (e.g. YouTube, Vimeo, TED etc) and add questions.  You do not need to be the video owner (an advantage over the native YouTube service.

While I will have workshops on both of these services, I thought I would provide the links as well as a connection to the same video marked up in each service.

My video using EduCannon. This is a public, non-tracked link.  It is meant for sharing in this type of a situation.  A student view would not allow skipping around in the video.

My video using EDpuzzle.  Click the “I’m a student” box.  You will need to log in, there is no pure demo mode for this tool.  

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