Happy New Year!

Christmas is over, but we’ve preserved our advent calendar of teaching and learning tips, just in case you didn’t get through all of them.

Day 1 – Blackboard: The Text Editor has a new layout!

Click on + to add extra content, and the person symbol to check accessibility. You can access the HTML source code by clicking on <>.

Find out more about changes to the Text Editor.

Day 2 – Panopto

If you don’t want your webcam to appear in your recording, switch your Primary Source video to None before you start. It’s much harder to remove afterwards!

More about Understanding Panopto Streams on the LIU website.

Day 3 – Accessibility

Use inbuilt heading styles in Word, Blackboard, Xerte and many other tools to make your document more structured.

More about Accessibility on the LIU website.

Day 4 – Collaborate

Use the new Collaborate Assessment Tool if you want to record student presentations in Collaborate and store them securely.

Day 5 – Blackboard

Use the FET Faculty template and use good structure to help your students navigate.

Day 6 – Learning Design

Use UCL’s online Learning Designer to help you plan your content using a variety of Learning Types to engage your students

Day 7 – Mentimeter

Press T while presenting to show test votes – handy for seeing how your results will look when designing your presentation!

More about Getting Started with Mentimeter on the LIU website.

Day 8 – Panopto

Worried about students seeing your outtakes? Record to your My Folder and move to the relevant module folder after editing.

What to do if you record to the wrong folder.

Day 9 – Feedback

For formative assessment, try giving your students their feedback before their mark to encourage them to engage with your comments. Consider using audio or video feedback.

Day 10 – Collaborate

Ask your students to mark themselves as Away when they take a break, then you can see when they come back.

Day 11 – Mentimeter

Use Mentimote to manage Q&A during your teaching sessions.

Day 12 – Collaborate

Use Microsoft Whiteboard in Collaborate rooms if you want to save the results.

Day 13 – Blackboard

Use Blackboard Groups to give your students a space to work on projects together. They can use their own Collaborate room, share files and set up discussion boards within their group.

Day 14 – Panopto

Try a ‘Spot the mistakes’ activity – do a Panopto recording about the topic where you make a number of factual mistakes or use common misconceptions, and ask students to identify them.

Day 15 – Shortcuts

Ctrl+Shift+v (Cmd+Shift+v on a Mac) lets you paste text with the formatting stripped out on many applications (not MS Word unfortunately!)

Day 16 – Xerte

If your Xerte session times out, (e.g. if it says ‘Sorry you cannot access this resource’, ‘Session ID not set’ or it just becomes unresponsive) don’t close any Xerte windows! Go back to your dashboard, refresh the page (Ctrl + F5 or Cmd + Shift + R on a Mac) and it will all be working again. That way you don’t risk losing any unsaved work.

Day 17 – Other tools

Try out some of the demos on H5P for making interactive learning objects. Think about how you could use these with your students and get in touch with the LIU to discuss your ideas and ours.

Day 18 – Shortcuts

Use Alt+Tab to navigate between different things you have open on your computer.

Day 19 – Blackboard

Send announcements to multiple courses at once by clicking on the envelope icon in your My Modules list.

Day 20 – Xerte

Don’t upload video files directly into Xerte. Instead, embed video from Youtube or Panopto. Just copy the embed code and paste it into Xerte.

Day 21 – Collaborate

Use these holding slides (animated gif to download) to introduce new users to the interface while they wait for the session to start. With thanks to our colleagues at Blackboard.

Day 22 – Panopto

Do a test recording in Panopto before you start, to check your sound levels. Check your computer audio as well if you will be using it (tick the box under Primary Sources).

Day 23 – Accessibility

To make learning materials more accessible use descriptive text for hyperlinks in your digital resources rather than ‘click here’. Both screenreaders and human scanners will find it easier to spot useful information this way.

Day 24 – What on earth are you doing here?!

Sign out of your work apps, turn off your notifications, and enjoy the Christmas break!


Photo by VisionPic .net from Pexels