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Summer is fast approaching and it’s business as usual in the the LearnTech Team. As this academic year draws to a close, we are already looking ahead and preparing for next year’s teaching. With this in mind, we will be offering our weekly LearnTech lunchtime sessions and other training opportunities on a rolling basis over the summer months, maximising the opportunities for you to engage, pick up new skills and receive the support you need to create inspiring and active teaching content for the benefit of your students. One tool in particular you may wish to familiarise yourself with is Turnitin’s new interface Feedback Studio, due for release from August.

LearnTech lunchtime sessions currently introduce some of our core NILE tools and some specific SaGE elements, including their potential applications and how these technologies can enhance your teaching and learning. Sessions are being offered at Park and we will happily offer parallel sessions at Avenue Campus on a request basis; please contact Vicky Brown, Learning Technology Manager in the first instance.

You can book now and come along to receive updates, refresh your skills and find out how your peers are working using UN-supported LearnTech tools. Feel free to bring along your own lunch to the hour long sessions.

We look forward to welcoming you over the coming weeks. Details, dates and booking links follow:

Kaltura/ MediaSpace (video)

As the University has now moved to a single video solution in Kaltura (MediaSpace), this is a chance for those who have already started to engage with this tool and those as yet to experience it. The following areas may cover an introduction to MediaSpace; video capture using CaptureSpace; uploading video to MediaSpace; embedding video content in NILE; using quizzes in Kaltura.

Monday 5 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, Tpod

Tuesday 4 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, Tpod

Tuesday 1 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Friday 1 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 26 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 24 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 21 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fWkTbG

 

Collaborate (Virtual Classroom)

This session will introduce those new to using online virtual classrooms (Northampton is licensed for Collaborate: Ultra Experience until 2020) as well as for those who are curious to learn about new functionalities now available in the tool. Topics may cover some of the following: setting up the tool in your NILE sites; inviting attendees; sharing files/ applications/ the virtual whiteboard; running a virtual classroom session; moderating sessions; recording sessions; break-out rooms.

Monday 22 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room

Monday 19 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 18 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 14 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 11 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 9 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 6 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 4 December – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2eG7mZR

 

MyPad / Edublogs (blogging tool)

MyPad (Edublogs) is the University’s personal and academic (WordPress) blogging tool and can be used in a number of ways to communicate and share learning resources. Topics covered may include: creation of individual / class student blogs; use of menus/ media; blog administration within modules; creation of class websites.

Friday 30 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 26 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room

Monday 24 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 22 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 18 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 16 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 14 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 12 December – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2f4BEUM

 

Assessments (Rubrics)

Have you heard about the use of rubrics in NILE and wondering what all the fuss is about? Want to find out how to grade your assessments electronically using rubrics? Curious to know how you can streamline your marking by using quantitative and/ or qualitative rubrics?

Come along to this LT lunchtime session to find out more about how to enhance and enrich feedback for your students using these tools in NILE.

Tuesday 13 June – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 5 September – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 27 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2pNL0H8

 

Assessments (Groups)

Groups are a powerful tool in NILE that can be used to facilitate and manage group assignments, and enable communication and collaboration for students.

If you are interested in seeing how to easily create groups, set an assignment (e.g. Group Presentation or online Debate), AND potentially reduce administration and marking time, whilst still maintaining quality of feedback, then please sign up ….

Wednesday 12 July – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 3 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2pNRmXb

 

Assessments (Turnitin Feedback Studio)

Turnitin has a new interface that will be adopted institution wide later on this year – Feedback Studio. Would you like to get ahead of the crowd and get a sneak preview of the new look and feel; to see the features offered by the new interface; see a demo and find out where to seek help and further support?

Sign up to this new LT lunchtime session to find out more.

Monday 7 August – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 31 October – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2qnc3dB

 

In addition the following training sessions are currently scheduled for Xerte – N.B. these are 2.5 hours in duration:

Xerte (online content creation tools)

Xerte is a University supported tool used to create interactive e-learning and online content.

In this training session you will be introduced to the software templates, page types, features and tools available to enable you to produce an interactive e-learning session or online content provision.

You will also learn about the importance of instructional design for your e-learning and online content projects, and benefit from some useful hints and tips, technical advice and items relevant to developing e-content generally.

Park Campus, Library, LLS IT Training Room or Tpod

14 June 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

29 June2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

13 July 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

15 August 2017 – 14:00-16:30 (Tpod)

6 September 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

27 September 2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

12 October 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

1 November 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

28 November 2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

21 December 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fYwKpY

 

Spaces are limited, so do not delay, book today! Unable to attend on these dates? More will be offered on a rolling basis so watch this space. In the meantime, please visit our NILE Guides and FAQs.

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The LearnTech Team is pleased to bring you the next three months programme of LearnTech lunchtimes, following on from the success of our inaugural offerings.Thanks to those of you who have already attended: we hope that you have managed to apply & implement some of what you have learnt for the benefit of your students. For those of you as yet unfamiliar with the concept, read on….

We will once again be introducing you to the various NILE tools, their potential applications and how these technologies can enhance your teaching and learning. Sessions are being offered at both Park and Avenue Campuses and we have a few new additions to whet your appetite, so book now and come along to receive updates, refresh your skills and find out how your peers are working using UN-supported LearnTech tools. Feel free to bring along your own lunch – tea and coffee will be provided.

We look forward to welcoming you over the coming weeks. Details, dates and booking links follow:

 

Kaltura/ MediaSpace (video)

As the University has now moved to a single video solution in Kaltura (MediaSpace), this is a chance for those who have already started to engage with this tool and those as yet to experience it. The session covers an introduction to MediaSpace; video capture using CaptureSpace; uploading video to MediaSpace; embedding video content in NILE; using quizzes in Kaltura.

Friday 17 March – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, IT Training Room

Friday 30 March – 12:30-13:30 – Avenue Campus, Library, CTC

Tuesday 11 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 8 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here:

(Park Campus): http://bit.ly/2fWkTbG

(Avenue Campus): http://bit.ly/2gAKcQx

Collaborate (Virtual Classroom)

This session will introduce those new to using online virtual classrooms (Northampton is licensed for Collaborate: Ultra Experience) as well as for those who are curious to learn about new functionalities now available in the tool. Topics covered include: setting up the tool in your NILE sites; inviting attendees; sharing files/ applications/ the virtual whiteboard; running a virtual classroom session; moderating sessions; recording sessions; break-out rooms.

Tuesday 21 March – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Thursday 23 March – 12:30-13:30 – Avenue Campus, Library, CTC

Friday 21 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 22 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room

Please sign up here:

(Park Campus): http://bit.ly/2eG7mZR

(Avenue Campus): http://bit.ly/2hwElOv

MyPad / Edublogs (blogging tool)

MyPad (Edublogs) is the University’s personal and academic (WordPress) blogging tool and can be used in a number of ways to communicate and share learning resources. Topics covered include: creation of individual / class student blogs; use of menus/ media; blog administration within modules; creation of class websites.

Tuesday 4 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Friday 28 April – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Friday 30 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2f4BEUM

Assessments (Rubrics)

Have you heard about the use of rubrics in NILE and wondering what all the fuss is about? Want to find out how to grade your assessments electronically using rubrics? Curious to know how you can streamline your marking by using quantitative and/ or qualitative rubrics?

Come along to this LT lunchtime session to find out more about how to enhance and enrich feedback for your students using these tools in NILE.

Tuesday 28 March – 12:30-13:30 - Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2n1m8xu

Assessments (Groups)

Groups are a powerful tool in NILE that can be used to facilitate and manage group assignments, and enable communication and collaboration for students.

If you are interested in seeing how to easily create groups, set an assignment (e.g. Group Presentation or online Debate), AND potentially reduce administration and marking time, whilst still maintaining quality of feedback, then please sign up ….

Thursday 4 May – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2n1sRI1

Assessments (Turnitin Feedback Studio)

Turnitin has a new interface that will be adopted institution wide later on this year – Feedback Studio. Would you like to get ahead of the crowd and get a sneak preview of the new look and feel; to see the features offered by the new interface; see a demo and find out where to seek help and further support?

Sign up to this new LT lunchtime session to find out more.

Monday 15 May – 12:30-13:30 - Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2mjnTml

Spaces are limited, so do not delay, book today!

 

In addition the following training sessions are currently scheduled for Xerte – N.B. these are 2.5 hours in duration:

Xerte (online content creation tools)

Xerte is a University supported tool used to create interactive e-learning and online content.

In this training session you will be introduced to the software templates, page types, features and tools available to enable you to produce an interactive e-learning session or online content provision.

You will also learn about the importance of instructional design for your e-learning and online content projects, and benefit from some useful hints and tips, technical advice and items relevant to developing e-content generally.

Places are limited to six per session.  Contact: anne.misselbrook@northampton.ac.uk for more details.

Park Campus, Library, LLS IT Training Room or Tpod

29 March 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

13 April 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

5 May 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

23 May 2017 – 14:00-16:30 (Tpod)

14 June 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

29 June 2017 – 13:30-16:00 (Tpod)

13 July 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (Tpod)

15 August 2017 – 14:00-16:30 (Tpod)

6 September 2017 – 10:00-12:30 (IT Training Room)

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fYwKpY

 

Avenue Campus, Library, CTC

Wednesday 3 May – 14:00-16:30

Wednesday 24 May – 14:00-16:30

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2ng6wqq

Unable to attend on these dates? More will be offered on a rolling basis so watch this space. In the meantime, please visit our NILE Guides and FAQs. Still need help? Please contact your assigned LT direct.

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Following the successful roll out of our first LearnTech Lunchtime sessions we are delighted to announce that we are now able to offer parallel sessions at Avenue Campus.

The first two will cover Kaltura / MediaSpace (video) and Collaborate (Virtual Classroom Tool). Details as follows, with more sessions to be announced in the New Year (so please watch this space!):

Kaltura/ MediaSpace (video) –

Wednesday 18 January 2017 – 12:30-13:30 – Avenue Campus,  Library, IT Training Room 1

As the University has now moved to a single video solution in Kaltura (MediaSpace), this is a chance for those who have already started to engage with this tool and those as yet to experience it. The following areas may cover an introduction to MediaSpace; video capture using CaptureSpace; uploading video to MediaSpace; embedding video content in NILE; using quizzes in Kaltura.

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2gAKcQx

Collaborate (Virtual Classroom) –

Thursday 2 February– 12:30-13:30 – Avenue Campus, Library, IT Training Room 1

This session will introduce those new to using online virtual classrooms (Northampton is licensed for Collaborate: Ultra Experience) as well as for those who are curious to learn about new functionalities now available in the tool. Topics may cover some of the following: setting up the tool in your NILE sites; inviting attendees; sharing files/ applications/ the virtual whiteboard; running a virtual classroom session; moderating sessions; recording sessions; break-out rooms.

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2hwElOv

Spaces are limited, so do not delay, book today!  Unable to attend on these dates? More will be offered on a rolling basis so watch this space. In the meantime, please visit our NILE Guides and FAQs.

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Do you want to make better use of NILE/ NILE tools to enhance your students’ learning experience? Are you currently using some but not all of the tools, want to find out more, receive updates or refresh your skills? Do you want to hear on what and how your peers are working using UN-supported LearnTech tools? Then please sign up for one or more of the following NEW LearnTech lunchtimes, details below. Feel free to bring along your own lunch – tea and coffee will be provided.

SaGE Updates –

Tuesday 29 November – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 17 January – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 13 February – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

This session is for staff who need a refresher on the current process with regards to Submission and Grading Electronically (SaGE). The hour may dip into but is not restricted to the following topics such as the SaGE workflow including marking in Turnitin; passing grades to the NILE grade centre; downloading grades to send to the SATs; and working with the External Examiner.

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fgVyJQ

Kaltura/ MediaSpace (video) –

Tuesday 6 December – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus,  Library, Tpod

Monday 23 January – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Wednesday 22 February – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

As the University has now moved to a single video solution in Kaltura (MediaSpace), this is a chance for those who have already started to engage with this tool and those as yet to experience it. The following areas may cover an introduction to MediaSpace; video capture using CaptureSpace; uploading video to MediaSpace; embedding video content in NILE; using quizzes in Kaltura.

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fWkTbG

Collaborate (Virtual Classroom) –

Wednesday 14 December – 12:00-13:00 – Park Campus, Library, IT Training Room – please note the different time & location of this session

Monday 30 January – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Tuesday 28 February – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

This session will introduce those new to using online virtual classrooms (Northampton is licensed for Collaborate: Ultra Experience) as well as for those who are curious to learn about new functionalities now available in the tool. Topics may cover some of the following: setting up the tool in your NILE sites; inviting attendees; sharing files/ applications/ the virtual whiteboard; running a virtual classroom session; moderating sessions; recording sessions; break-out rooms.

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2eG7mZR

MyPad / Edublogs (blogging tool)  –

Thursday 12 January – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Thursday 9 February – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

Monday 6 March – 12:30-13:30 – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

MyPad (Edublogs) is the University’s personal and academic (WordPress) blogging tool and can be used in a number of ways to communicate and share learning resources. Topics covered may include: creation of individual / class student blogs; use of menus/ media; blog administration within modules; creation of class websites.

Please sign up here: http://bit.ly/2f4BEUM

Spaces are limited, so do not delay, book today!

In addition the following training sessions are currently scheduled for Xerte – N.B. these are 2.5 hours in duration:

Xerte (online content creation tools) – Park Campus, Library, Tpod

30 November 2016 – 10:00-12:30

14 December 2016 – 14:00-16:30

5 January 2017 – 14:00-16:30

26 January 2017 – 10:00-12:30

10 February 2017 – 10:00-12:30

1 March 2017 – 14:00-16:30 Library, IT Training Room – please note the different location of this session

Xerte e-learning software is the University supported tool used to create interactive e-learning and online content. In this training session you will be introduced to the software templates, features and tools available to enable you to produce an interactive e-learning session.  You will also benefit from hints and tips, technical advice and items relevant to developing e-content generally.  

Places are limited to six per session.  Contact: anne.misselbrook@northampton.ac.uk for more details and to book a place or sign up here: http://bit.ly/2fYwKpY

Unable to attend on these dates? More will be offered on a rolling basis so watch this space. In the meantime, please visit our NILE Guides and FAQs.

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Solve a Teaching ProblemWe came across this great resource recently, from the Teaching Excellence and Educational Innovation Center at Carnegie Mellon University. It’s designed to help academics solve teaching problems through a three-step process:

  • Step 1: Identify a PROBLEM you encounter in your teaching.
  • Step 2: Identify possible REASONS for the problem
  • Step 3: Explore STRATEGIES to address the problem.

To access the site, click on the image, or use this hyperlink: https://www.cmu.edu/teaching/solveproblem/index.html

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As in previous years, LearnTech have been working with colleagues in Curriculum and IT on the creation of new NILE course (programme) and module sites for the forthcoming academic year, only this year with a twist: instead of routinely copying over all teaching materials from earlier site iterations, we are taking this opportunity to review and ‘spring clean’ legacy content, particularly with a nod to the course evaluation and redesign coming out of recent CAiEROs.

NILE 2016-17 module template

NILE 2016-17 module template

The updated and fresh NILE template, proposed at (and tweaked on the back of consultations with) the SEC (Student Experience Committee) on 24th February and with the Learning and Teaching Forum, has resulted in the creation of  4,251 ‘clean’ sites, now ready and already receiving content.

Following the updated minimum NILE standards, LearnTech and Academic Librarians have so far worked with colleagues from the Schools of Education and Health running a total of 11 sessions covering changes to the template; reviewing and copying relevant content; checking curriculum data and reading lists and populating sites ready for the new student intake.

The Team is now working on the roll-out to the Business School and is in contact with subject leads from the Schools of Social Sciences, Arts and SciTech, identifying local support needs, creating online resources to help guide site population and working with colleagues from other University support teams to ensure everything is set up and in place for the new academic year – where possible, before the summer vacation strikes!

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screenshotOne of the most important roles of a Learning Technologist is in mediating between users of technology and the technology itself, so providing technical support is a critical factor in the acceptance of technology by teachers and the satisfaction of students. It has a direct effect on perceived ease of use and usefulness (Sánchez et al, 2010).

Academic staff require a variety of levels of support, given that their approach to using a new VLE (or previously unused features of an existing one) will vary from trial-and-error experimentation to a desire for formal training. Support within a VLE usually consists of searchable alphabetic lists of help items or by categorising common activities, often consisting of text supplemented by video clips (either of these formats appears equally effective, so a combination of the two would seem the best approach). As technology acceptance seems to be positively related to the ease of completing a task (Rienties et al, 2014), improving access to support material should be a priority. There is little doubt that a good student experience is directly linked to the configuration and use of VLE tools, but there is a similar need to ensure that they are confident in the use of those tools too.

As maintainers of the VLE ‘container’, we need to be aware of the need for help and make it clearly available in a form that users can elicit appropriate material easily. Students react positively to relevant support information and their learning is enhanced, though they might not access it as regularly as we might think and may not wish to explore subsequent links to further resources. Operative instruction (“click this, then this”) would appear to be more effective than functional instruction (“you can use this tool to discuss topics with your peers”) for simple tasks, but the opposite is true of complex tasks. Help is more likely to be accessed when some prior knowledge of a task exists, so users new to a VLE must be a high priority to be directed towards it. Making material:

  • Context sensitive
  • Simple to understand
  • Of good quality (both text and multimedia)

appear to be significant to the value of help material (Aleven et al, 2003).

We have been aware of the shortcomings of access to our NILE help material for some time (even if the help resource itself is excellent). The lack of a search facility within Blackboard Learn had previously limited us to a set of thematic links for students and staff (these referenced a number of different resources, from single page PDF files to full-blown support sites) and an alphabetic listing of single issue topics. The former were perceived to be useful, but the latter proved difficult to both use and maintain. The relatively high number of dead links that remained unnoticed and unreported in the student help tab would seem to suggest that few of them were actively used. Indeed the access and use of individual help items was impossible to judge, though we had introduced basic analytics tracking to the staff and student help pages in September 2014.

For the 2015/16 academic year we have, therefore, completely changed access to help material by using a MyPad (EduBlog) site to act as an electronic index. As systems administrators we are able to use categories as a tool to cluster and filter individual blog posts into thematic groups and providing tagging filters that can modify those clusters and construct tailored help searches. Users can also directly access tagged items through the ‘most used tags’ word cloud.

While we have control over the thematic links, the standard search function that exists within Edublogs is very basic and produces results which are solely ranked upon recency. This does mean that we are required to identify important posts and manually adjust their date on a regular basis to ensure they are ranked most highly. The lack of any sophisticated parsing of a search query is a further problem – a natural language query is likely to result in no hits but one or two common words with return a high number of hits, again plagued by the poor ranking.

However, this may not be too much of a problem providing that the number of blog posts remains relatively small and it many respects this is desirable. We have seen examples of Edublogs based help systems which contain high volumes of disparate content (going well beyond the core VLE functions) that results in very poor search results. When our new help system was created, it used approximately 90 entries to re-create the thematic and item links in the old help pages and it will be our aim to keep the total number of active posts under 150. In this manner we should reduced the number of excessive search results while keeping the maintenance of entries manageable.

screenshotPerhaps the greatest advantage of the new help system is that we now have access to anonymous analytics to inform us about which items are being used and the flow of access to each item. We can also see the text used in search requests that fail, so for the first time we can add new posts or editing existing ones to achieve a ‘hit’ in the future. The range of these search requests can be surprising – within a week of the system being used we needed to add entries to capture searches for ‘timetables’ and ‘examination results’, a need we would have been totally oblivious to last year.

Despite the wide range of help requests, our aim is to keep its content tightly focused on NILE core and arranged technologies, signposting requests for which we are not the best contact point to the highest level of appropriate contact (such as the Student Help desk, IT Services or Skills Hub). Wherever possible, we avoid linking to specific pages on an external site content as links we have no control over have an unpleasant habit of changing. Our main exception has been Blackboard Learn’s online help, which benefits from a robust (and predictable) URL convention but has very confusing generic advice at its top level. To aid our maintenance, you will see that links are colour coded – Black for external Blackboard Help, Blue for other external resources and a ‘heart’ for material created or managed by LearnTech.

Post content is kept deliberately short and task oriented, uses additional ‘how to’ videos whenever possible and restates the issue using variety of different terms to improve search results. We have a significant amount of extra work to do though and intend to improve thematic (such as marking assignments and providing feedback) and task (‘How can I make a video?’) orientated access to related material progressively. LearnTech’s Iain Griffin has already produced a more specialist help site for PebblePad that provides an excellent model for these some of these application or task related mini-sites.

As of now, we see a very similar number of ‘hits’ on our help page to that of a year ago – we look forward to providing a more detailed report on facts and figures and progress in developing the site later in the year.

 

References

Aleven, Vincent, Stahl, Elmar, Schworm, Silke, Fischer, Frank, & Wallace, Raven. (2003). Help Seeking and Help Design in Interactive Learning Environments. Review of Educational Research, 73(3), 277-320.

Rienties, B., Giesbers, B., Lygo-Baker, S., Ma, H., & Rees, R. (2014). Why some teachers easily learn to use a new virtual learning environment: A technology acceptance perspective. Interactive Learning Environments, 1-14.

Sánchez, R. Arteaga, & Hueros, A. Duarte. (2010). Motivational factors that influence the acceptance of Moodle using TAM. Computers in Human Behavior, 26(6), 1632-1640.

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Here are a few things we need to tell you about your NILE sites for the 15/16 year. Please take look as there will more than likely be something that is relevant to you.

Making your site live

Don’t forget that sites are not automatically made available to students. You need to make them available once you’re ready. To do this, you can use the Quick Actions box which is on the Sites & Organisations tab. Click Site Availability, then use the toggle switch to make sites available/unavailable (ie. turn them on/off) to students.

Contacts

To make things easier to copy contact details from site to site you can change your contacts section from using the Contacts Tool to a standard content area. This will enable you to copy individual items/contacts between sites instead of all contacts at the same time. However, if you have spent some time on your contacts area already (using the Tool) and just want to ensure the Student Desk details are correct, you can create a new contact and use this URL as the link: https://nile.northampton.ac.uk/bbcswebdav/xid-2138093_1?target=blank

For more information on using a Content Area for your Contacts have a look at this guide

Reading lists

Unfortunately we have discovered that there are some 15/16 sites that have not automatically got a link to the Reading List (Talis Aspire) site. If you find that there is not a link in the Reading List section of your site then follow this guidance to add it. It is only a few clicks.

Turnitin update

Updates to the Turnitin integration with NILE over the summer has resulted in the frustrating issue where the Primary Display in the Grade Centre reverts to displaying the number has now been resolved. If you make changes to a Turnitin assignment (eg. changing the post date) the Primary Display settings are retained.

Kaltura update

If you are using videos for assessment then the product (Kaltura) behind this has been updated. This new guide provides details of the slight change in the way that students should submit video for assessment. Look out for more details soon.

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'Type' by Victoria Pickering is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

When it comes to publishing online – on NILE, MyPad or other websites – copyright legislation is an important consideration that can too often be overlooked.

Arbitrarily using text, images, audio or video from other websites in your work runs risk. It’s not great to use NILE’s password protection, or ‘it’s for educational use’ as legitimate excuses.

So to help you produce trouble-free online content we’ve put together a quick guide to what you can and cannot do, and good places to find great resources.

 

Copyright Basics

To help ease you into this complex world, the Copyright Hub has an interactive guide with a vast wealth of resources.

It’s worth remembering Copyright sits alongside Trademarks and Patents and Designs and is overseen by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO).

This is not to be confused with Data Protection and Freedom of Information which fall under the remit of the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)

Copyright exists to protect work and permit its owner to dictate how, where and when this is used. It doesn’t always prevent republishing, but will dictate the terms of use.

 

Creative Commons

A common way to find and use material online, legally and for free, is by using Creative Commons content. Where applied, a copyright owner will permit the use of their work in the following ways:

  • attribution only, with no further restrictions,
  • no commercial uses of the work,
  • no derivatives (adaptations) can made of it.

You may have already considered using this when posting your own copyright material on the web.

 

Websites

Information which is freely available on the internet isn’t necessarily free to copy. Websites are protected by copyright and some sites may also be considered as databases and be protected by database right.

The material published on a website is protected by copyright in the same way as print material. Most will have a copyright declaration or specify how material from the site may be used. Although if missing, it’s best to assume the usual restrictions apply and only use a small amount for private, non-commercial purposes.

If the information on the website is not easy to access – it’s password protected for instance – then this implies the owner is protecting their work and does not want it to be copied or distributed freely; even if there is no charge for using the site.

Not all the information on the internet has been posted legally, so be careful to check the source of the information where it is possible, and use your own judgement where it is not.

 

Images

When looking for images it’s tempting to use anything that’s readily available! Jisc’s interactive guide gives you a safer approach.

It’s better to use a search engine that displays only Creative Commons licensed images, or those that have been made available rights free.

If you use Google Images, narrow the usage rights with an advance search. For further advice read Jisc Digital Media – Copyright of still images.

 

TV, Radio & Sounds

There’s a wealth of videos on sites such as YouTube which you may wish to use in your teaching. Although be mindful it’s not legal to download a video to upload it to your NILE site, or redistribute it in any way. However, it is legal and straightforward to add a link or embed the video in NILE.

The Educational Recording Agency (ERA) licence permits staff to copy, access and use broadcast output for non-commercial educational purposes. This means all scheduled free-to-air radio and television broadcasts may be recorded for the purposes of making ERA Recordings.

To save you the trouble of having to record programmes yourself, as well as providing guidance, the British Universities Film and Video Council also runs the Box Of Broadcasts (BOB) service, to which the University subscribes.

This makes available programmes from over 60 UK channels dating back to 2007 and can to be used in your teaching. What’s more, clips can easily be embedded into NILE.

For further advice read Jisc Digital Media – AudioVisual copyright

 

Books, Journals and Newspapers

All the electronic resources provided through NELSON are covered by licences. Most e-journal and e-book suppliers prefer their material to be deep-linked within NILE. Guidance on this is available in the downloads section of the Library webpage on the staff portal.

The same licences allow users to make single copies for educational purposes, so you could refer students to a reference or deep-link in these cases. Be suspicious if you find online copies of books or journals you would normally expect to pay for. They could easily be illegal copies.

The University’s CLA licence also allows digital scanned copies of both book chapters and journal articles to be placed into NILE legally (whether we own them already or not). Contact the Digitisation Team for help.

 

Open Educational Resources

Many institutions from around the world have made available Open Educational Resources (OERs). These are teaching materials including lesson plans, documents and media available for reuse.

It can be time consuming to adapt and localise materials created in other countries, so we recommend you use UK repositories in the first instance, where possible.

To sample websites that offer complete free open courses, have a browse around MIT OpenCourseWare and Saylor courses as examples.

Open Textbooks are available from BCCampus in Canada and a good selection of links are listed on Open Access Textbooks. These are free, open, reusable textbooks in HE and FE.

OMICS provides a list of open access journals in different languages and subjects. The OER Knowledge Cloud also offers many research reports and articles about OER.

 

And finally – did you know?

  • Copyright does not need to be registered and subsists automatically from the moment an original work is created.
  • Owning a piece of work, and owning the copyright of that work, are not the same thing.
  • Commissioning work by a third-party doesn’t grant you copyright ownership – unless it’s stated in the contractual terms.

There were significant changes to copyright in 2014. Here are some links to explain further.

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Link to the online NILE quiz

Click the image to start the quiz. It would appear IE9 (installed on UN computers) won’t open this link properly, so please use Chrome or Firefox.

You can find out a bit more about the free tool used to create this quiz in the NILEX site. Quizzes can be embedded directly in NILE.

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