The CITES Wiki Plays Well with Others

The CITES Wiki service  has a thousand and one uses.  It’s great for committee work, collaborative writing, information-sharing, student projects, group work in classes, and so on and so on.  You can edit and comment on document in a simple interface that’s available anywhere the Web touches.

Many people like to compose in Microsoft Word, and to create their tables in Excel.  You might also want a format for your final documents that doesn’t look like a Wiki.

You might not know that you can turn wiki pages into other kinds of documents and also do the same in reverse.  This blog posting will show you how simple it is.

Importing

First, decide where the new document will appear on your wiki space.  Let’s start with a Wiki page (mine’s called coffee, because I like coffee).  Go to the Tools menu in the upper-right, choose Import Word Document.  On the next page you can browse to find your document (mine is called wikis_expanded.doc).  Click Next and you’ll see all your options.screenshot of the “Import” control panel, showing available options

You can either replace a wiki page that already exists (for example, if you’ve already built up your wiki and you’re already linking to “coffee”) or create a new page.
Data in Excel can be copied into a word document (loosing the formulae but retaining formatting) and then converted into a wiki page.
Sure, you can just upload files as attachments, but you might find it useful to have the option of viewing quickly on a Webpage without downloading an attachment, and also have the option of editing or commenting on documents within the wiki itself, and other functions like Revision History can come in handy.

Exporting

You can also move in the opposite direction, and let wiki content circulate in other forms, like Word documents, or PDFs, or a complete website. Say for example your students created impressive wiki pages that they might want to sue as part of a portfolio later. I have also worked with groups who used the wiki to collaborate and then invited stakeholders to review and comment on the content created. Next, when they were ready to publish their work, they exported the space to HTML and added it to their department’s public Website.

Here’s what to do. Go to the Browse menu in the upper-left of an page in your wiki space, and choose Advanced. Next, under Export on the right of the next page, select “PDF Export” or “HTML Export.” This will show you a tree all the pages in your space, and you can un-check what you don’t want to export, of just do the whole thing.

screenshot of the Advanced control panel, with “Export to HTML” selected, showing all the wiki pages to be chosen

Here is a Wiki site page before and after being exported to HTML.  All the formatting, internal and external links, and images come through safely.

Screenshot of a wiki page, looking identical after being converted to HTML

Wait. There’s more. You can also quickly export any single page. When you on that page, go to the Tools menu on the right-hand side, and choose “Export to Word” or “Export to PDF.”

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Two Upcoming Events

Please join CITES, CITL, and the University Library as we host two events!

The first event, the Learning Spaces Collaboratory Webinar, will take place March 25th, and it will address the topic of lecture halls.

The second event, the EDUCAUSE Learning Institute (ELI) Spring 2014 Focus Session, takes place April 1st – 3rd, and this focus session will address the topic of faculty engagement and development. Read more about each event below:

Learning Spaces Collaboratory (LSC) Webinar

Exploring Lecture Spaces
When: Tuesday, March 25, 2014, 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Where: 23 Illini Hall

RSVP to Mitzi O. Greene at mgree2@illinois.edu

Description
Spaces—tiered or flat—morphing from instructor-centered to team-based, peer-to-peer learning environments provide opportunities for flipping the classroom. Questions addressed:  What are lecture halls becoming beyond spaces for lectures?  What is the role of such spaces in an ecosystem of learning spaces; are they still needed?  What is a lecture space intended to do, to be? What impact do such spaces have on 21st century learners?  How do we know? Lessons learned and what works will be distilled from stories in the LSC Guide and from the field.

Additional Details
http://www.pkallsc.org/events/lsc-guide%E2%80%94webinar-iii-exploring-lecture-spaces

EDUCAUSE Learning Institute (ELI) Spring 2014 Focus Session

Faculty Engagement and Development: Effective and Innovative Practice
When: April 1, 2, and 3, 11 AM – 2:30 PM (Central Time)
Where: 23 Illini Hall

RSVP to Mitzi O. Greene at mgree2@illinois.edu

Description
We will host the focus session inside an Adobe Connect learning environment where participants will exchange ideas and collaborate interactively with the teaching and learning community. As new teaching and learning options proliferate almost daily, faculty engagement and development is of fundamental importance to institutional success. Faculty development can help instructors improve teaching and manage change by enhancing individual strengths and abilities, as well as organizational capacities and culture. How is the teaching and learning community rethinking its approach to this task? What innovations are we seeing in faculty engagement and development, given higher education’s re-examination of its teaching and learning mission? These questions and more will be discussed in this online focus session.

Additional Details
http://www.educause.edu/eli/events/eli-online-spring-focus-session/2014

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Box.com Sync, Made Simple

Through Box.com, all University of Illinois faculty, staff and students have 50 gigabytes of file storage space, accessible and shareable everywhere the Web touches.  In addition to storing and sharing, desktop sync is also available.  Basically, sync puts a folder on your desktop with copies of the files in your synchronized folders on Box.  Box will keep all your files up to date; if there’s a newer version in Box, each local file will be updated, and vice versa.  You save a file in one place and it’s saved to all your synced locations.

How to set up desktop sync is not immediately and intuitively apparent, but I think more people would be using this if they knew how.  So, this posting tells you what you need to know.

How to install the client

Access to download the client is not where you’d probably expect.  First, go to http://uofi.box.com.  Choose your campus, and log in with your NetID and CITES AD password.

Next, click on the gear icon in the upper-right corner, next to your name and choose “Get Box Sync” from the menu.  Then you’ll be able to download the appropriate client for your computer.

screenshopt of "gear" dropdown menu

Apps are also available for iOS, Android, Blackberry, and Windows mobile devices.

 

What gets synced

The most complicated part here is what Box folders you can access from your computer.

By default, you start off with only the “Default Sync Folder” showing up in the Box folder on your desktop.

It’s likely you already have more folders already created to organize your files in Box.  So, you just need to turn on synchronization for each folder you want to have available. You can do this when you’re viewing your Box files on the Web.

When you hover your mouse over the folder you want to sync, the background color changes.  To the right of the folder is a triangle icon to give you the options menu.  Choose “Sync Folder to Computer.”

Screenshot of options menu for a folder in Box.com, with "Sync folder to computer" highlighted.

That’s it.  Your files in Box are  now available on your desktop.  Drag a file into the Box folder and it’s instantly available on Box, in the cloud, backed up, and ready to share with others.

 

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Subhadeep Paul – Innovative Teaching with Technology Partner

paul portraitSubhadeep Paul, Graduate Teaching Assistant, Statistics

Teaching with Technology Topic: Teaching and Learning with a Tablet PC

Primary Goal: Using a tablet PC for student teaching and learning

Synopsis: In Fall 2013, Graduate Teaching Assistant Subhadeep Paul used a Tablet PC to enhance teaching and learning in Statistics 100.

Grad Teaching Assistant Subhadeep Paul received his room assignment shortly before classes started for the fall semester of 2013. Subhadeep found that he would be teaching in a room that had a projection system, but it did not have a resident computer or a document camera. The traditional teaching model for Statistics 100 has the instructor using a document camera to project a paper workbook and filling in notes and problem examples during the lecture. Students follow along and fill in notes using the same workbook.

Subhadeep wanted to use a tablet to save class preparation and delivery time and to better engage students. If he didn’t use a tablet, he would have to copy everything from paper notes to the chalkboard so students could follow along while solving the workbook problems. Because Subhadeep didn’t have a way to project the workbook to his class, he submitted a proposal to CITES Academic Technology Services through their Tablet Initiative to use a tablet device to present the class workbook as students followed along. He quickly tested both an iPad and a Fujitsu T1000 tablet PC running Windows 8 and ultimately chose the tablet PC because of its bigger screen and the ease of writing with a pointed stylus.

Annotation Demonstration 1: A demonstration of annotation on the Fujitsu tablet PC using Note Anytime in STATS 100 class. (00:49)

Annotation Demonstration 2: Another demonstration of annotation on the Fujitsu tablet PC using Note Anytime in STATS 100 class. (01:42)

Because Subhadeep was going to annotate on the projected notes as part of the class presentation, he also had to choose an annotation software package. At the time, there were only a few Windows 8 annotation packages available. After trying both Adobe Reader for Windows 8 and Note Anytime by MetaMoJi, he chose Note Anytime. Note Anytime will import pdf files, allow annotation on those files, and save the annotated file as jpeg images. Note Anytime also has a palm rejection shield. This electronic feature enables the user to rest their hand on the screen without it initiating computer functions. One potentially negative aspect of this app is that all menu and editing options are also projected and are visible to students.

Note Anytime Features: Demonstrating some of the features of Note Anytime on the Fujitsu tablet PC in STATS 100 class. (01:21)

Using the tablet and the chalkboard, Subhadeep felt more connected and engaged with his students because he was moving around the room more. He felt that they paid more attention than when just using the chalkboard. Subhadeep said, “The course is a general education elective that has students of varying mathematical background. If I just used the chalkboard, I would have to put lots of background material on it. Using the tablet, I was able to prepare those notes ahead of time. That allowed me to spend more time on explanations.”

Inserting Background Material: Discusses inserting additional instructional material with Note Anytime using the Fujitsu tablet PC in a STATS 100 class. (01:06)

Using the annotation software, Subhadeep was better able to illustrate class material and to emphasize particular points. With the tablet, Subhadeep also found it was easier to move his completed notes to the class website. Students particularly appreciated the availability of completed notes for future reference.

Saving Notes: Discusses how annotated notes were saved with Note Anytime using the Fujitsu tablet PC in a STATS 100 class. (00:24)

Another much appreciated use of the tablet was in quickly reviewing the material taught in the previous class. One student commented, “The tablet is great because the completed notes that he sent us helps us to be more organized and prepared for the exams”.

Reviewing Class Material: Discusses how reviewing was done with Note Anytime using the Fujitsu tablet PC in a STATS 100 class. (00:39)

Subhadeep was also able to annotate directly on projected graphs. This is important when teaching statistics, as visualization and visual inference is a key part of basic statistics. It was also easy to insert more blank spaces between notes in the worksheet or add additional material into the class lectures to make a point. It would be more difficult to do this using the chalkboard. This additional material was easily incorporated into the class notes that were then posted to the website. It would have been additional work to recopy extra material that was presented on the chalkboard.

Another advantage of using the tablet was the ease of switching between online data programs, computer simulations and the notes. It was much easier to show a computer simulation and quickly return to the exact point in the notes as opposed to using the traditional blackboard or document camera.

Computer Data Simulation Program Demonstration: A demonstration of the STATS 100 data simulation program on the Fujitsu tablet PC in a STATS 100 class. (01:34)

Subhadeep stated that his chalkboard presentations are not linear and continuous. He felt that this was a concern shared by many instructors. He said tablet presentations are, by their nature, linear and continuous, since the margins and spaces within which to write are predefined. This was important to him and his students when showing step-by-step procedures to explain and solve workbook problems. There was a particular benefit when presenting a previous year’s exam as a practice test as he had the ability to underline keywords, write comments, and outline the step-by-step thought process associated with solving one of the problems.

Subhadeep felt that using the tablet PC saved him both class and prep time. An informal survey of the students found that they liked the annotated presentations during class time and for later studying when they were posted to the class website.

Posting Notes: Discusses the posting of annotated class notes to the class website. (00:34)

 

If you would like more information or to submit a proposal, please visit our Tablet Initiative website.

 

Tablet Annotation Close-up: A closer view of annotating on the Fujitsu tablet PC. (00:29)

paul w-tabletFujitsu tablet closeupprojection screen shot

paul w-projection screen

 

 

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No more e-mail attachments! Link to your Box files in email or in Compass

I use Box.com to back up my files and to move them among office and home and iPad.  I try not to use email attachments. Instead, I upload the files to Box.com and then just add a link to the file in the body of the email.  Most of the files I send as an attachment are important enough to back up on Box.com, so why upload them twice?  Also, some types of attachments are now filtered out of University mail, and using Box is a good alternative. There are other advantages that we’ll see as well.

Also, if you’re teaching, you can use the same technique to add links to the files in Illinois Compass 2G.  If you’re using Box to store and move files, and you want to share them with your students, there’s an easy way to make that happen using Compass without moving your files.

You can use this method to share individual files or whole folders. Here’s how:

  1. To get started, click on the menu to the right of the file you want to distribute. Box file menu: selecting "share."
  2. Choose “Share” from the menu, and then “Get Link to File.” A window will pop up, with a link to your file, ending in a long series of random characters.
    Sharing a folder.  Choose "Get link to file."
  3. Next, click on the menu in the top-right of the dialog box. Make the link “public.” This just means that your students won’t have to log in to Box just to get the file.open_access
    “Public” does not mean that everyone on the planet can see your document. This just means that clicking on the link will take people directly to the file.  Whomever you’re sending this to won’t have to log in to Box just to get the file.
  4. Simply copy the full URL from the box. If you’re sending the link in e-mail, all you have to do is paste the URL into the body of your e-mail message.  Another advantage of sharing documents this way is you will receive an e-mail notification when someone downloads your files (if you don’t want to receive these notifications, you can change the setting by choosing Properties from the same menu we used to Share).
  5. * * * If you want to share the link in Compass instead of by e-mail, keep reading!* * *  Once you have the URL, it’s a snap to add it to your Compass site. To add a URL to a Content Area, choose “Web Link” from the “Build Content” menu."Web Link" in menu in Illinois Compass
  6. Paste the URL from Box into the form, give your link a name, and you’re done.Web link dialog box in Illinois Compass, with the URL pasted in

You can also use this method to link to a whole folder in Box, such as one that holds all your handouts for one course. Then, as you have more files to share, you can just drop them into the folder and students can use the same link to access new files.

Linking to files was a feature available in our Netfiles service before we retired it. It’s one thing that you cannot do in Dropbox, so I was glad to see it available from Box.com.

 

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Ellen Fireman – Innovative Teaching with Technology Faculty Partner

efireman IMG_1484Ellen Fireman, Senior Lecturer, Department of Statistics

Teaching with Technology Topic: Lecture Capture

Primary Goal: To improve statistics instruction in large lecture classrooms

“. . . lecture capture is the single most important improvement to Stat 100 in the 13 years I’ve been teaching it. Not only is it an invaluable teaching tool for students in my sections, other sections and even the online students, but it’s the best teaching manual for new instructors.”

Ellen Fireman, Senior Lecturer, Department of Statistics

Synopsis: Statistics 100 has an enrollment of 1,100 students without any discussion sections. The teaching model employed is based on the course instructor utilizing class time to lecture, explain class material, and demonstrate problem examples as students simultaneously work the problem examples in their workbooks.

Lecture capture is the process of recording lectures and then making those lectures available for students. Because many other activities besides lectures take place in classrooms, from student presentations to team-based learning, we’ve begun also to use the term classroom capture. There are differing levels of technology involved with classroom capture and different approaches to what is captured. For example, audio alone might be sufficient for some contexts. Another common approach is to capture audio and everything that is projected in the classroom (slides, web pages, document cameras, etc.). The full treatment would include classroom audio, the video feed to the projector, as well as a camera focused on the instructor and, perhaps, additional cameras and microphones that capture student involvement. Making a recording may be as simple as using a small audio recorder to record and then manually email or upload that file to students. Or, one can have a video camera and operator at the back of a classroom recording a lecture. When the teaching goal is to record every classroom session, it is best to use integrated systems, which include a camera permanently installed in a classroom and employ automated recording, scheduling, processing and distribution of the classroom recordings.

STATS 100 Lincoln Hall Theater wide shotFor her STAT 100 class, Ellen Fireman wanted to capture the large screen in Lincoln Hall Theater where she demonstrated how to work through statistical concepts and problems. Ellen’s hope was that these class recordings could be used in subsequent semesters as well as for a new online version of her course. Given Ellen’s goals and the fact that her course did not offer an integrated, automated classroom capture system, the decision Close up fireman_statwas made to manually record each lecture using a video camera and operator at the back of the lecture hall. David Collier, STAT 100 Technical Assistant, and then, Brandon Jordan from CITES Digital Media Group were tasked as camera operators. They recorded the projection screen and occasionally followed the instructor during the lecture. The process was very labor intensive, but it resulted in a complete set of class lectures.

In previous semesters, STAT 100 students attending office hours would ask Teaching Assistants to repeat entire lectures in one-on-one sessions. This was inefficient and frustrating to the teaching team. Now with a catalog of recorded lectures, any students visiting office hours are first directed to watch the appropriate lecture recording before they seek individualized tutoring.

The teaching team reported this model is “distinctly valuable by functioning as an extension of our tutoring hours – greatly increasing the number of students” served.

Students may also view the lecture or any part of the lecture at any time and as many times as needed so that they learn and understand the material.

Ellen also said that she would monitor class discussion boards. When students were having difficulty understanding the material, she would refer them to a specific time in a given recorded lecture.

Ellen and her teaching team have reported additional benefits of the lecture recordings:

1.   Instructors have used the recordings to observe, reflect, and modify their own teaching skills and methods.

2.   Recordings have helped prepare new instructors supporting the course.

3.   For extreme circumstances, recordings may be used as a substitute teacher (illness, personal emergencies, conference travel).

Ellen Fireman’s experience with classroom capture has been very positive: “It’s the best teaching manual for myself, too! I watch the relevant lecture video before every class and it gives me a clear picture of what works and what doesn’t–a visual guide that would be impossible to get any other way.” While classroom capture has been utilized for many years on our campus in Computer Science and the College of Veterinary Medicine, there remain many instructors who don’t yet appreciate the benefits of classroom capture, and there are many classrooms that remain unequipped to offer faculty the choice to do any classroom recordings.

For large enrollment courses such as Stat 100, however, where the large pools of students will certainly include many with legitimate excused absences (travel, health-related, student athletes), and where one can expect greater diversity (learning styles and accommodations; English as second language), classroom capture can allow students the ability to review, pause, replay and personally control their study of classroom content. As Ellen notes: “Lecture Capture is a fantastic teaching/learning tool–it should be required for all large lectures!”

Link: http://www.stat.illinois.edu/courses/stat100/lectures_S13.html

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Check for plagiarism on the fly with SafeAssign’s DirectSubmit

The semester is coming to an end, and students are turning in papers.  We all want to be confident of the academic integrity of student’s work.    I don’t expect plagiarism, but it’s something we all need to watch out for.

So, I am planning to run my thirty students’ papers through SafeAssign   in Illinois Compass 2G.  I am actually using Moodle for my course, but I can still use SafeAssign through DirectSubmit.

Maybe you’re having students turn in their work through Compass’s standard Assignment tool.  The standard assignment has the advantage of allowing you to comment on papers and return them to students with inline grading, all online.

You can still use Direct Submit to scan any papers you suspect, or all of them.

Here’s how:

  1. Go into any Compass course space in which you have an instructional role.  In the Control Panel in the lower-left, under Course Tools, click the link to SafeAssign, and then the link to DirectSubmit.  Here is where you can upload files to be scanned, and organize them into folders.  There’s a wide range of files that can be scanned, or you can just paste text into a form and have it scanned that way.
  2. Next, click on the link to Submit a paper, with the plus sign.
  3. Before uploading papers I make sure to check “Submit as Draft.”  This means that the papers I upload will not stay in the system and be checked against papers turned in in the future.  This is important, because my students did not elect to have their papers shared anywhere.  SafeAssign screen to upload a file, with arrow pointing to “submit as draft” checkbox
  4. Use the Browse button and upload the paper you want to check.

Then you just have to wait for the report to show up.  It’s not immediate, but shouldn’t take too long.  When the report is ready, a green SafeAssign log0 will show up in the “SA Report” column.   List of uploaded files, with logos highlighted

SafeAssign tries to find text matching what is in the student work you submit, by searching:

* student papers turned in to SafeAssign’s “global” database as well as papers submitted to a U of I-only version of the database;
* the World Wide Web, indexed by Microsoft Live Search; and
*  articles indexed by ProQuest ABI/Inform.

– Alan Bilansky

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Yelda Aydin-Mullen – Innovative Teaching With Technology Faculty Partner

Yelda Aydin-Mullen, Instructor, Mathematics

Teaching with Technology Topic: Student Learning Using Tablet Games

Primary Goal: Using tablet games to enhance student learning and engagement

Synopsis: In Fall 2013, Math 002/199 Instructor Yelda Aydin-Mullen used the math game AlgeBurst, on iPads to engage and enhance her student’s ability to learn algebraic exponents. AlgeBurst, published by Cengage Learning, is based on the video tiling game Bejeweled.

Instructor Yelda Aydin-Mullen believed that learning algebraic exponents requires repetition for increased knowledge retention, but repetitive learning tasks can challenge learners’ patience. Yelda felt that using a tablet game could make repetitive learning activities more appealing for students, and, thus, increase study time and enhance their learning.

Her inspiration for the learning project came from an experience at Parkland College, where she worked with a student who developed a math app and needed to relearn math rules to build the application. Given the challenge of creating the game, the student quickly relearned the math needed to design the app. Later at a conference, Yelda was exposed to additional math learning applications, encouraging her to incorporate more tablet based math applications in class.

It was at this point that Yelda approached CITES Academic Technology Services through their Tablet Initiative and submitted a proposal to use a math game to increase student knowledge of algebraic exponent operations in MATH 002/199. Testing both the free and paid versions of AlgeBurst, Yelda decided to use the paid version of the game.

Yelda spent three class sessions with her students playing AlgeBurst on 12 iPads, with 36 students sharing one tablet per group of three. Students were challenged to get faster and achieve a percentage score of accuracy with the game. In each successive session, she raised the grading criteria, which was based on higher accuracy with shorter completion time for a group.

Based on student classroom participation and a short survey, it was clear that students preferred the use of the game for learning over the textbook, lecture, homework, or self-study. In helping them learn the subject matter, they also voiced satisfaction regarding the repetition that the game provided. Yelda found that group participation was excellent, and reports that students enjoyed the game as a vehicle for collaborative learning.

For future classes, Yelda feels that a better approach would be to share a single iPad among a pair of students, thus, increasing playing time per student while still benefitting from collaboration with a partner. Additionally, Yelda was not completely satisfied with the game design and documentation of AlgeBurst and would like to try other math game applications.

A future project may return to the idea of students actively designing or creating games. This approach engages students with a challenging project that necessitates they learn the necessary math to successfully complete the design process. This learn-by-designing approach would go back to her original inspiration for using gamification as a learning strategy.

If you would like more information or to submit a proposal, please visit our Tablet Initiative website.
posting DSCF8942revposting DSCF8935revposting DSCF8940revposting screenshot 1 AlgeBurstposting screenshot 2 AlgeBurst

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Using a wiki to make group work easier

When you think “wiki” do you automatically think “Wikipedia”?  It wouldn’t be surprising, but the wiki technology has many uses besides the free online encyclopedia.  Wikis can assist with collaborative work in the classroom in a number of ways.  This post describes one simple use of a wiki in the classroom.

A wiki (like the Wikipedia) is a Webpage that anyone can edit (at least anyone given access), right there, on the Web.  U of I faculty can request spaces on the campus Wiki service  and have their students given automatic access to the space, just as they can in Illinois Compass.

I’m teaching a course this semester and I’m committed to collaborative learning, so I’m relying heavily on group work, where students are divided into small groups, given a task to complete together, and asked to report their work to the whole class.  The wiki is a great tool to take care of the mechanics of group work.

Formatting text is simple, and so is creating child pages.  Just put the name of the new page in brackets.

editing a page on the wiki, with dates in brackets: 29 August, 5 September, etc.

 

As you can see in this screenshot, all I had to do was create one page (I called it “dailies” in my wiki) for each class day we use have a group task.  (Notice the cheat-sheet along the right, showing the most common tags.)

The hardest thing about working in a wiki is file management, finding the pages you create and making sure you’re not editing someone else’s page.  So, the first thing I do after the groups have formed is ask each group to come up with a name.  This tends to be more fun than you’d expect.  But the basic idea is I don’t want the group pages to be called One, two, and three because it’s so easy to forget what page each group should editing.

editing a page on the wiki, with names of groups in brackets: sloth, group 43, low expectations, tom petty and the.

I’m fortunate to be teaching in a classroom with a computer and projector.  Now all I need to do is go the wiki page for today’s date, have the students call out their group names, and type them inside square brackets to create links.

When they’re ready, the students click on the links to their respective groups.  This takes them to their own page, and they can start typing.

When it’s time to hear the group’s reports, I open all the wiki pages for the groups, and put each up on the screen as they talk about their results.  This way the record of their work is available during class, but also recorded for future uses (ideas for papers or projects, review for exams, etc.)

As I said, wikis are really simple to learn and to use.  The first day we did a group project, I took around five minutes to walk students through entering, editing and formatting on the wiki, and they were off and running.  By the second time we used the wiki, after I displayed the first group’s page and took their report, the second group asked me to “refresh.”  There was some laughter in the room.  Why?  Because the students realized that the second group had been rewriting their page as they listened to the first group.  I took this as very positive, as it meant that the technology was already transparent, and the students were looking past it at the content.

A variation some of my students discovered: each group member can type individual text in comments at the bottom of their wiki page (there’s a link to “Add Comment” on every page), and then one member can combine these together.

Group tasks in the classroom are a long-standing component of active learning, with plenty of research to support their instructional value.  Wikis can help solve some practical difficulties that can potentially limit the power of this technique.  It’s win-win for technology and teaching.

You can request a wiki space today!

-Alan Bilansky

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Smithsonian 3D Modeling/Imaging Webcast

Smithsonian X 3D, an event showcasing how 3D scanning and image-based modeling technologies will transform the work of the Smithsonian and research institutions worldwide, will be webcast live at the Media Commons (top floor of the Undergraduate Library). Please join us for the entire event or drop-in as you are able from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm on November 13 & 14, 2013. Information about the event is here:

http://3d.si.edu/index.html

There are many related projects on our campus, including the Sousa Archives/Library project to image and build 3D models of instruments from the collection. Here’s an example:

http://imagesearch.library.illinois.edu/u?/sousa,884

Note: The 3D viewer requires Java and does not work on mobile devices. Click on 3D view at the top left of the page to view the 3D model.

Please join us!

Taragato

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