Mar 26

#TechTipThursday: WebEx Meetings Mobile App

WebEx is an interactive educational app that allows users to participate in online meetings and provides convenient features such as interactive and shared screen options. Users will be allowed to invite participants, present content and interact through audio and visual displays in such a way that simulates the typical classroom environment. An additional benefit is that meeting attendees are able to join without having an account with WebEx; the meeting host is the only individual who is required to have an account. Longwood University has a license agreement with WebEx and can create accounts for current faculty and staff.

This post will review the ways in which users can use the app to schedule (and record), start, and participate in a meeting. These directions, and accompanying screenshots, are specific to Apple mobile devices as we have many iPads available for loan.

Users have two options when the WebEx app is first opened: join a meeting or sign in. WebEx1

 

For users with a host account and/or to sign into the WebEx app:

  1. To sign in you will enter the user information, specific to WebEx, provided to you by the DEC.
  2. Once signed in you will see a screen similar to the one below. On the left-hand side of the screen you can view the calendar of scheduled meetings. You can also schedule a meeting from this screen. WebEx2
  3. Near the middle of the screen you may notice a little box with a plus sign. When you tap on this box you will be given the ability to either start a meeting instantly or schedule a meeting. WebEx3
  4. If you select “schedule”, you will have the ability to identify the name, time and date of the meeting as well as invite people and create a password.
    1. To select a date and time, touch the “Start/Duration” box. When satisfied with your conditions, tap “Save” in the top right-hand corner of that box. WebEx5
    2. Tap on “Invitees” to invite people to your meeting. You will be prompted to give WebEx access to your device’s contacts. If you deny access, you will still have the ability to manually enter email addresses of your invitees. Tap the blue “+” button to add invitees to your meeting. WebEx7
    3. You have the ability to add a password, which users will be required to enter, to join the meeting.WebEx8
  5. When you first start a meeting, you will see the screen below. WebEx9
  6. To show video, tap on the camera icon (looks like a square with a triangle immediately next to it) to the right-hand side of the screen. You will be prompted to allow WebEx access to your camera. In order to join the meeting with your video feed enabled, you must allow WebEx access to your camera. Denying WebEx access to your camera does not prohibit you from viewing the video feeds of other attendees. If you choose to allow WebEx to your camera, your video will appear at the bottom of the window. WebEx10
  7. You are able to view the meeting’s participants by tapping the person icon (to the right of the camera icon). Within this view, you will be able to chat with presenters and/or participants. WebEx12
  8. To participate verbally, you will need to share audio by tapping on the microphone icon near the center of the screen (to the right of the meeting’s title). You will be prompted to allow WebEx access to your device’s microphone. If you deny access, you will not be able to participate in the meeting with audio. WEbEx13
  9. Meeting hosts are able to record from the app; participants are unable to record meetings. To record the meeting, tap on the 3 horizontal dots on the far right-hand side of the screen and touch “record” to begin. WebEx14
  10. To share content with meeting attendees, the host can tap on the green “Share Content” button in the center of the screen or tap on the small box with an up arrow on the left-hand side of the screen. Either method will open a list of options from which content can be shared. WebEx15

To join a meeting:

  1. Tap on “Join Meeting” instead of “Sign In”. WebEx16
  2. Enter the meeting number, which would have been shared with you previously (most often via email), your name and your email address. WebEx17
  3. Then provide the meeting password – also found in the meeting information shared with you in advance. WebEx18

To ensure that your microphone and video camera are available to WebEx:

  1. Enter the settings on your mobile device.
  2. Scroll all the way down until you see “WebEx” on the left-hand side of your screen and tap it. On the right half of the screen you will see whether or not WebEx has access to your device’s contacts, microphone and camera. You can edit permissions as necessary.WebEx20

If you have any difficulty replicating the steps detailed in this post, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Mar 19

#TechTipThursday: Browser Extensions, part 2

Today’s post is the second in our series succinctly highlighting several optional browser extensions that the ITCs have found useful and would recommend to others. Last week’s post covered Adblock Plus and Web Of Trust. This post will focus on two browser add-ons with an increasing academic focus: one extension will automatically create citations and the other will allow you to take, annotate and share screenshots.

Our first add-on, Awesome Screenshot, is a great way to capture, edit and/or annotate images from the web. You’re also able to save and/or share your final product. Though you can do a great deal with the free version, such as upload local images for annotation, access to certain features (e.g., capture screenshots of your desktop) requires the paid premium version of the extension.

  1. To use, first navigate to the webpage you wish to capture and select the icon from the top right-hand corner of the browser.awesome1
  2. From the dropdown menu, select your desired choice for image capturing. If you would like to edit an image from your local drive, press the “select a local image” button.awesome2
  3. From the new screen, you may either click and drag an image into the field or search your desired image within your local drive.awesome3
  4. If you would like to capture the entire page, or a specific part, select from “Capture Selected Area” or “Capture Entire Page.”awesome4
  5. When you have outlined the desired capture field, select the “Capture” button.awesome5
  6. Once you have captured your desired image, you can edit and annotate using basic features from the tool bar at the top.awesome6
  7. Once you have completed editing your image, select “Done.”awesome7
  8. From the new window, you can preview your image and choose to save or print the image.awesome8

You can download Awesome Screenshot here: http://awesomescreenshot.com/.

Our second add-on, Cite This For Me, is a quick and convenient way for users to cite and compile a working bibliography. This tool offers various styles of citation (e.g., APA, Harvard, MLA) for all web-based pages including academic journals and articles in “.pdf” format. This add-on is great for research projects and a viable resource for anyone in academia.

  1. To use this extension, first navigate to a page you wish to cite, and press the extension button in the top right-hand corner of your screen.cite1
  2. From the pop-up menu, select your desired form of citation and then the “Cite this page” button. cite2
  3. The citation will appear on the same page. From here you can either copy and paste the citation or select the “Add to bibliography” button. cite3
  4. A new window will open where you can edit any details of the citation. When finished, select “Add reference.”cite4
  5. “Your bibliography” is a place for you to save all citations and import them to a document of your choice, such as Word. To export your bibliography, select the “Download Bibliography” button at the top of the page. cite5
  6. You can then choose the desired destination for your exported bibliography. cite6

You can access Cite This For Me here: https://www.citethisforme.com/.

If you have any difficulty replicating the steps detailed in this post, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Mar 16

Canvas Releases an Resource Sharing Platform

Today, March 16th, 2015, Canvas Commons was introduced to our University’s instance Canvas. We are among a select group of institutions who have access to the Commons through a pilot program.

Through the Canvas Commons, faculty will be able to create learning objects that can be used in multiple sections of a course or can be shared with an entire department. Faculty will also be able to pull shared learning objects created by other faculty into their own course. The sharing of learning materials is very granular and up to the discretion of each faculty member. With Commons, users can create a personal learning object repository; build a course from scratch with relevant materials shared by other Canvas users; and create a name for yourself and your institution as a subject matter expert.

This post will address the basics of how to use the Commons.

  1. To find resources in Commons, navigate to the Commons, using the new link in Global Navigation located between Calendar and Library. commons 1
    1. You can search using keywords, author, institution or title in the search bar. You may also click a specific resource title below to view only those types. If you use the search bar, you will also be able to further refine your search results by visibility (or ‘shared with’), type, grade level, and subject using the search filter on the results page. To search everything available to you in Commons, leave the search field and filters blank. Note: additional resources will become available in future releases. commons 2commons 3
      1. You can filter by who the resource was shared with: shared with the public (all Canvas users), within the University, or with only you (private resources). You may notice the options to include/exclude “Manually-Created Courses,” “Training,” and “Blackboard Imported Courses”. These options reflect sub-accounts, used solely for internal organizational purposes only, and can be ignored.
      2. You can filter by resource type (Courses, Modules, Assignments, Quizzes, Discussions, Pages, Documents, or Images).
      3. The grade/level filter allows you to select specific grades or level of education to narrow your search (K-12, Undergraduate, Graduate).
      4. You can also filter by subject.
  2. To share a course with the Commons, select settings from the course’s left-hand navigation menu.
    1. Once in the course’s settings, click the “Share to Commons” button on the far right-hand side of the screen. commons 4
    2. This will take you to a form for you to fill out the details about the course you are sharing. You can include tags and other information about the course to make it easier for people to find [using the search function]. commons 5
    3. At the bottom of the page choose a “Share With” option. You can either share with only yourself, the entire university, or all of Canvas Commons. Note: If you choose to share with the entire university keep the default check-boxes checked. commons 6
  3. Before you can share a file or image with the Commons, make sure you have “Better File Browsing” enabled. To enable this feature, enter your course’s settings, click the “Feature Options” tab and confirm that the “Better File Browsing” option is on.
    1. Go to the Files page and click on the gear beside the name of the file or image and select the “Share with Commons” option. commons 7
    2. This will take you to a form for you to fill out the details about the file or image you are sharing.
  4. To share any other Canvas resource, navigate to the page (i.e., modules, assessments, etc.) of the resource you want to share.
    1. Select the gear shift icon to the far right of the resource’s name. You’ll notice the “Share to Commons” option will appear in the drop-down menu. Select “Share to Commons”.
    2. This will take you to a form (shown above) for you to fill out the details about the resource you are sharing.
  5. Navigate to the Commons, from the global navigation bar, to import a resource from the Commons.
    1. Find the resource you want to use by searching or browsing available resources, and open the one you want to import. commons 8
    2. On the resource preview page, you will be able to look at a description of the resource, and preview some of the content.  Once you are sure you want to use it, click the green “Import Into Course” button on the right-hand side of the page. commons 9
    3. This will present a drop-down menu of all the courses you have permission to edit. Select the course into which you wish to import the resource. commons 10
    4. You will receive a notification that the import started successfully. It may take up to 30 minutes for the import to finish and for the imported content to be reflected in your course. commons 11

Need more? Here are some tutorials from Canvas on how to get started:

What is Canvas Commons: http://guides.instructure.com/m/4152/l/257492-what-is-canvas-commons

How do I use Commons: http://guides.instructure.com/m/4152/l/257493-how-do-i-use-commons

Interested in learning more about Canvas Commons? The DEC is hosting an introductory workshop on Tuesday, March 31st from 4-5 pm in the Digital Den in Ruffner Hall. Please RSVP to Brooke Greenbank. If you’re unable to attend, know we’ll post a recording of the workshop here on our blog.

Mar 12

#TechTipThursday: Browser Extensions, part 1

Browser add-ons (or “extensions”) provide some sort of desirable feature to enhance your browsing sessions for either individual, specific websites or for multiple sites during a session. For instance, some add-ons are designed to block the pop-up ads that appear in your browser window during a session. This post is the first of two, succinctly highlighting several optional browser extensions that the ITCs have found useful and would recommend to others.

Our first add-on is one that has been installed on all of the machines in our (loaner) equipment inventory: “Web of Trust” or “WOT” for short. Its service is to “. . . [collect] ratings and reviews from a global community of millions of users who rate and comment on websites based on their personal experiences” (https://www.mywot.com/en/aboutus). While using a search engine in your browser, WOT uses the collected reviews and ratings to assign each search result a level of trust, represented by colored circles. The levels of circles are green for “good”, yellow for “questionable”, and red for “untrusted”.

CapturewotYou can download WOT here: https://www.mywot.com/en/download.

Our second add-on is Adblock Plus, which will block banner ads, pop-up ads, video ads, and even website tracking that some websites employ to gather your information. The extension itself will show in your browser toolbar and will display a little number corresponding to the number of ads blocked from the site you are currently on.

AB1

When you click on the above icon you will see a window (below) which details the current ads blocked on the site you’re on as well as the ads blocked in total.AB2

If you click on “Options”, you will open a page that allows you to configure Adblock Plus. The important thing to be aware of here is the “Update Now” button, which updates the filter list. Making sure to update the filter list essentially means you are updating what the program blocks. Adblock Plus learns over time by filtering ads so it is important to keep the filter list(s) updated. To learn more about this add-on’s functionality, we refer you to “How Does Adblock Plus work?“.

You can download Adblock Plus here: https://adblockplus.org/en/.

Next Thursday we’ll highlight two additional browser extensions. As always, if you have any questions or concerns as a follow up to this post, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Feb 26

#TechTipThursday: YouTube Capture App

While there are several ways for smart phone users to capture video on-the-go, the YouTube Capture app allows you to capture video and automatically publish to YouTube. Other features and options are available, as well, some of which are reviewed in our video tutorial below.

This app can fulfill several student learning outcomes requiring students to demonstrate a particular competency. For example, athletic training majors who need to demonstrate the ability to correctly wrap or otherwise treat an ankle sprain; music majors who need to provide a conducting demonstration; and the list goes on.

YouTube Preview Image

YouTube Capture is a free app available for download through the App Store.

If you have any difficulty replicating the steps detailed in this blog post, or have questions that weren’t answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly.

Feb 17

*RELEASE* ITC Recruitment Video

YouTube Preview Image

The Instructional Technology Collaborators, of spring 2015, are excited to release their recruitment video. Filmed and edited by the students themselves, you can hear from the students about the ITC program. If you’re intrigued by what you see and hear, we encourage you to apply! Applications are due by 5pm on Friday, February 27, 2015.

Online ApplicationPDF Application

Feb 12

#TechTipThursday: Protect Your Password (part 2)

Last week our #TechTipThursday post discussed LockNote, a Windows-based application used to encrypt and decrypt a document that stores passwords. Because LockNote isn’t supported on Mac, this post will discuss a Mac OS alternative, 7zX, a similar application which allows for greater functionality. With 7zX users have the ability to password protect any file type they desire. A user who wishes to create a password-protected document with all of their login information can do so using 7zX (on a Mac) or LockNote (on a PC). However, with 7zX, documents are not the only file-type that can be encrypted. With 7zX a user can easily encrypt a picture [file-format] using a simple drag-and-drop. This post includes a brief video tutorial and overview of 7zX’s Mac-user-friendly interface.

YouTube Preview Image

If you have any difficulty replicating the steps detailed in this blog post, or have questions that weren’t answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly.

Feb 08

Now hiring ITCs for Fall 2015!

IMG_3216

The Digital Education Collaborative is currently hiring student staff workers to start this coming fall 2015 semester. Our student staff members, or Instructional Technology Collaborators (ITCs), assist the campus community in their use of supported instructional technologies. If any of these focus areas interest you, then you interest us!

  • The future of instructional technology and modern advances in online learning
  • Support for Canvas, Echo 360 (personal and classroom capture), video conferencing, smart technology, educational resources (such as Dropbox and Google Drive), iPads and apps
  • Computer languages (Java, CSS, HTML)
  • WordPress blogging
  • Graphic design
  • Public relations (physical and digital)

After becoming a member of the student staff team, ITCs will complete an in-depth training so they are prepared for all assignments and appointments. ITCs will provide support, as requested, via phone calls, emails, and during one-on-one appointments. During a shift, you may also be assigned to complete interesting tasks like researching new apps, program planning, program-specific badging tasks and exploring new technology to recommend for use in the learning environment.

Offers will be contingent on the student’s ability to be available for training, which starts on August 12, 2015 and runs through August 21, 2015 (no weekends).

If you want to nominate a student for this position, please contact the ITC Program Manager directly.

Click here for more information.

Feb 05

#TechTipThursday: Protect Your Passwords

Do you have multiple password-protected accounts that have the same password? Do you have trouble remembering your strong passwords? Using the same password for multiple accounts and/or using weak passwords makes your information vulnerable to hackers and social engineering techniques (e.g., the ability for an individual to guess your password). Steganos LockNote was designed to counter this common problem. LockNote is an application that offers a platform for PC users to store passwords in a password protected, text document. For example, you can store passwords for your social media sites, online banking, and educational platforms that are all different, and long enough to deter the possibility of hack, all while only remembering one password to access the document. This post includes a brief video tutorial and overview of LockNote’s user-friendly interface.

YouTube Preview Image

For additional password tips please visit: http://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/15-tips-to-better-password-security. Likewise, only one feature of LockNote was covered in this post. For additional support and information such as encrypting entire documents please visit: http://locknote.steganos.com.

If you have any difficulty replicating the steps detailed in this blog post, or have questions that weren’t answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly.

Jan 29

#TechTipThursday: Printing the notes from a PowerPoint presentation

Many professors use PowerPoint slides to present lecture information. Instructors will often add additional information, in the Notes section (see red box in the first graphic below), that is not visible during a PowerPoint presentation. This feature can also be useful when you, yourself, have to give a presentation. The ability to have notes to refer to, which aren’t visible during a presentation itself, can provide helpful reassurance. Knowing how to print PowerPoint slides with the notes can prove beneficial. This post will guide users on how to print the notes, along with the PowerPoint presentation, on both a Mac and PC.

PPT1

On a Mac:

  1. Select “File”, then “Print” to bring up the Print Settings Menu. Mac1
  2. Next to the “Print What” section, select the “Notes” option. Mac2
  3. Then, from the third menu option, select “Layout”. Mac3
  4. For the “Pages per Sheet” option, select how many slides you want printed on each page. Printing 1, 4, 9, and 16 slides will print portrait style, and printing 2 or 6 slides will print landscape style. Typically, 4 slides per page is the maximum number of slides per page you should print, otherwise the slides get too small to read. Mac4
  5. After selecting the number of pages per sheet, select “Print”. Mac5
  6. This is what the page should look like when printed: the slides with the notes underneath. Mac6

On a PC:

  1. Select “File”, then “Save & Send” to bring up the Save & Send Menu. PC1
  2. Select “Create Handouts” from the menu options, and then the “Create Handouts” on the right to bring up the handout menu. PC2
  3. Now, you can select either “Notes next to slides” or “Notes below slides”. Notes next to slides will place the slide on the left and the accompanying notes on the right. The number of slides per page will be determined by the amount of notes for each slide. Notes below slides will print the notes underneath the slide, but this option only allows you to print one slide per page. After selecting your preferred option, select “OK”. PC3
  4. This will then export your PowerPoint slides and notes into a Word document where you can print the handout. This is what a notes next to slides will look like: PC4

If you have any difficulty replicating the steps detailed in this blog post, or have questions that weren’t answered here, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly.

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