At last, staged roll outs of iPads to staff using meraki as a management tool. Starting with our Legal Practice Course staff. It all went well till they started using facetime and syncing contacts to the iCloud (which to be honest we thought we had removed) Cue much removal of iCloud from the devices that still had it on. Anyway 20 done, 55 to go
First full week of students using the pebblepad workbooks for EU law and the interface has caused some confusion, not just for the students as it sometimes gives us a hard time. At least one student complete the whole thing in one sitting though!
50 laptops setup for the cafe style learning event the first years are taking part in over in the octagon. In the days of BYOD im not sure how many of the 50 we provided were actually used
And over in MOOC / futurelearn world sign ups are now over 6000
The end of a hectic intro week for the undergraduates and also the week when several off my friends and family took their children to their new Universities.
My TEL intro talk concentrated on mobile apps for blackboard and the iSheffield app plus a quick demo of the MOOC (close to 5000 learners now). To think in my first TEL intro lecture at Law in 2002 I was telling them not to rely on floppy disks for saving their essays and showing them how to access their 20mb of file server space.
The pebblepad work book has seen its first few entries from students and so far no queries, possibly because its bamboozled them.
Finally by Thursday we had enough time to look at Meraki and this afternoon (Friday) ive finally started the iPad roll out . Made slower by the ios 9 update.
The pic below? Well Tim Herrick used a metaphor for the capability of our VLE during a round-table discussion . he said it was OK but not brilliant, a bit like a holiday in Norfolk. So the picture below is actually from my recent holiday in Norfolk. I don’t think it’s too bad…Norfolk that is, the VLE is for a different discussion
Then Thursday I walked 19.5 miles (the fitbit said 21) from Edale to Sheffield for the big walk charity event
It’s an odd time of the year for the educational technologist. There is an awful amount of preparation and build up for the new semester, to do, but the reality is that many staff are away making tasks difficult then suddenly September is upon us and its all hands to the pumps.
The White Rose Learning Technology group met up in Leeds and our main discussions were around professional accreditation. My CMALT portfolio is still ongoing and to add to the pressure I’ve started my portfolio for fellowship of the HEA.
I managed to get 2 very cheap licences for Respondus and ran a session with the LPC staff to show hem how they could use responds to modify and create new MCQs in Blackboard. We also covered some area of the Blackboard gradebook which I blogged about here.
As I write this work on building the MOOC is still in full swing and we have just short of 4000 learners enrolled.
CMALT meeting on Thursday 23rd we each had to do a 5 minute presentation on our chosen specialism for section 5 of the portfolio.
I’m choosing open learning, MOOCs and working with the Futurelearn platform
In particular I highlighted difference between working with Furturelearn and within our own blackboard VLE.
The MOOC platform is quite simple and offers 4 basic tools in Article (around about 500 words)
Multiple Choice Quiz – both for self test and grading
Higher production quality of material for free (BBC4 documentary standard).
Compare that with content our students actually pay for
Issues to consider
The key learning objectives of the MOOC should be achievable without accessing any extra materials or buying books.
We can’t reference digital material held in the university of Sheffield Library as this is only available with a University login. We can only reference any open source material freely available, or through the white rose repository.
Raises discussions about moving our academic content into an open source environment