Online Teaching & Technology Blog

Center for Online Learning, Research and Service @ Illinois Springfield

Author: mgribbin

Teaching Tips from UIS Faculty

Experienced UIS Faculty shared their teaching experiences as part of the 2017 Faculty Teaching & Learning Academy at UIS.  This program was administered by the Provost’s Office at UIS.

 

Tips to Reduce & Detect Violations of Academic Integrity

Design with Integrity in Mind

  • Include academic integrity statement in course syllabus
  • Alternate assessments from term to term or class to class
  • Set up discussion board to prevent viewing of classmates’ posts before posting
  • Write test questions and activities for unique responses
  • Test settings (randomize, question pools, time limits, display questions one at a time, limit question feedback)
  • Create scaffolded assignments
  • Require presentations as part of an assignment

Plagiarism: Not citing sources, not using quotation marks

  • Turnitin can be used 
  • Use is not limited to papers – Can be used for discussion boards, essay exam questions, etc.

Reusing: Submitting the same work for more than one course

  • As more faculty at UIS use Turnitin, this can be more easily detected
  • Turnitin identifies course and semester, access to paper can be requested by original instructor

Cheating During Remote Exams

  • Respondus LockDown Browser can help, but can be easily circumvented!
  • Proctoring centers can be used, but are all of your online students getting equal testing environments?
    • Not all proctors treat proctoring equally!
  • Examity can be used to strengthen test integrity

Authenticity: Having another student take your exam for you

  • How are we ensuring that the student is the one completing the exam?
  • How are we authenticating our online students?
  • Examity can be used to provide two-factor authentication
  • Ask students to agree to an academic integrity statement before beginning a test or submitting an assignment:

“I verify I am the only one taking the exam and that no one is helping me physically or electronically. I won’t copy the exam in whole or in part. I will refrain from discussing this exam with anyone until after the due date. I will adhere to the academic integrity policy.”

Academic Integrity at UIS

Using JAWS Screen Reader with Blackboard

Blackboard has developed the following resources to aid users of JAWS screen readers in using Blackboard:

Navigate Blackboard Learn with JAWS

Best Practice: Using Tests with JAWS

Best Practice: Grading with JAWS

If you are a JAWS user and need additional assistance, please contact the UIS Office of Disability Services.

UIS Disability Statement for Syllabus

As of Fall 2015, the following disability statement should be used on UIS syllabi:

If you are a student with a documented temporary or ongoing disability in need of academic accommodations, please contact the Office of Disability Services at 217-206-6666.

Disabilities may include, but are not limited to: Psychological, Health, Learning, Sensory, Mobility, ADHD, TBI and Asperger’s syndrome.  In some cases, accommodations are also available for shorter term disabling conditions such as severe medical situations.  Accommodations are based upon underlying medical and cognitive conditions and may include, but are not limited to: extended time for tests and quizzes, distraction free environment for tests and quizzes, a note taker, interpreter and FM devices.

Students who have made a request for an academic accommodation that has been reviewed and approved by the ODS will receive an accommodation letter which should be provided by the student to the instructor as soon as possible, preferably in the first week of class.

For assistance in seeking academic accommodations, please contact the UIS Office of Disability Services (ODS) in the Human Resources Building, Room 80, phone number 217-206-6666.

File Storage Options at UIS

Where’s the best place to store your class files, research projects, and other important documents?  You have many file storage options, including Box, Google Drive, OneDrive, and Kaltura.  ITS has created a useful matrix comparing the benefits and limits of each data storage service available at UIS.

Additional information can be found on their website.

 

2014 Innovating Pedagogy Report

The annual Innovating Pedagogy report explores new forms of teaching, learning and assessment for an interactive world, to guide teachers and policy makers in productive innovation.

Produced by the Institute of Educational Technology at The Open University, the report identifies ten educational terms, theories and practices that have the potential to provoke major shifts in educational practice in the near future.

Featured in 2014’s annual report:

  1. Massive open social learning
  2. Learning design informed by analytics
  3. Flipped classrooms
  4. Bring your own devices
  5. Learning to learn
  6. Dynamic assessment
  7. Event-based learning
  8. Learning through storytelling
  9. Threshold concepts
  10. Bricolage

The report can be downloaded at: http://www.openuniversity.edu/sites/www.openuniversity.edu/files/The_Open_University_Innovating_Pedagogy_2014_0.pdf

Examity Quick-Guide for Faculty

Download the UIS Examity Quick Guide for Faculty.

1. Using Examity® with Blackboard

You will access Examity® through Blackboard. All of the data relevant to your exams will be imported automatically daily into Examity®, and Examity® will not change anything about the way you currently use Blackboard.

To use Examity in your class, you must first turn the tool on your course.  To turn the tool on, click on Customization in the Control Panel and select Tool Availability.

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On the Tool Available page, you will need to put a checkmark in the box for ExamityUISSSO.

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You can then add a link to Examity in your course.  In the content area in which you want the link to appear, click on Tools –> More Tools –> ExamityUISSSO.  Click submit.

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This will add a link to the Examity dashboard inside your course. 

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To get to your Examity® Dashboard, click on the Examity® link. You will see a screen that says “click here to login”—by clicking that button, you log into Examity® with your Blackboard user infor­mation.examity2

Once you click it, you will be taken directly to your Examity® Instructor Dashboard. You may be prompted to login as an Exam Instructor or Student.  Select Exam Instructor.

Please note: there may be a one-day delay in seeing your dashboard after enabling the Examity tool for your class, as the data link between Blackboard and Examity refreshes once per day.

2. Viewing the Examity® Dashboard

You can get to all four areas of Examity® from your dashboard by clicking on either the links at the top of the navigation bar or the icons you see when you log in.

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Clicking on the EXAM STATUS button will enable you to see the status of your students’ exams (scheduled, pending at auditor, approved/rejected by auditor, or cancelled/incomplete). This is the button to click if you want to review videos once they have been approved by our auditing team.

Clicking on STUDENT enables you to search for individual students.  If a student needs special accommodations for an exam, such as double time for the exam, that information may be entered here.

Clicking on the REPORTS button displays all the exams that are associated with you. You can filter by class, or student name, and download Excel and PDF versions of these reports to help you keep track of your students.

Clicking on COURSES/EXAMS takes you to a list of all your classes. You can edit courses here.

Please Note: The first time you visit Examity, you will need to set up your profile.  It is important for you to set up your correct time zone so that Examity knows from what time zone you are teaching.

3. Setting Up an Exam & Adding Customized Rules

The first step in setting up an exam with Examity is to make sure the exam is set to available in Blackboard. The exam should also have a password. Exams that are made available will be directly imported into our system.

Once an exam has been imported, you can enter the Examity dashboard and edit the settings of each course and exam by clicking the pencil icon under the “Action” tab. Click the arrow left of the course name to find and edit each exam for that course.

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The first part of the box asks you to fill in several items:

  • Exam Name: Midterm, Quiz 1, etc.
  • FairExam Level: this is the desired level of proctoring service required. Examity offers four levels of service.  As the instructor, you can select which level of service you want for your exam.
    • Level 0 – authenticate & record all tests
    • Level 1 – authenticate & record all tests, review a random sample of tests
    • Level 2 – authenticate & record all tests, review all tests
    • Level 3 – authenticate & record all tests, live proctor monitors & reviews all tests
  • Duration of the Exam: the length of time students get to complete the exam (1 hour)
  • Link to Access the Exam: In most cases, this will be bb.uis.edu
  • Exam Start Date: the first day in which the student can take the exam
  • Exam End Date: the last day in which the student can take the exam
  • Upload a File: If you need to provide your students with a document for their exam, such as a supplemental case study or a formula sheet, you may upload it here
  • Exam Password: If your Blackboard exam has a password, you may share the password with the proctor here.  He/she will enter the password for the student on Blackboard.
  • Extended Time/Special Accommodations: If you have a student who needs special accommodations for the exam, select Yes.  Please note: after setting up your exam, you will need to select the student(s) who needs special accommodations in the Student section of the Dashboard and enter the details of the student’s accommodation.
  • Student Upload File: If your students need to upload a file when they finish their exam, select yes.

The second part of the box establishes the rules for the exam environment. You can add special instructions here.

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Examity provides standard rules, as listed above.  To insert customized rules, such as the test is open book or that students are permitted to use a calculator, you may add them here by clicking the checkbox. Additional rules and special instructions may be inserted in the text box (click save after entering).  Click Save Exam to finalize the exam’s arrangements with Examity.

Once you have added an exam, you can see the arrangements and make changes by clicking on the arrow next to the course in your Courses/Exam section of your Examity Dashboard.

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Once an exam has been arranged with Examity, students may begin scheduling their exams directly with Examity.  A sample letter for faculty to send to students about the scheduling their exam with Examity can be found on the COLRS’ website at go.uis.edu/examityemail .

**Please note: Exams will be pulled in automatically within 24 hours once the “Make the Link Available” link in Blackboard is marked to yes.  To prevent students from seeing the exam before the exam date, set the Display After and Display Until dates for the testing period.

4. Tracking Exam Status

The Exam Status section of the Examity Dashboard allows instructors to view whether students have scheduled their exams and when those exams will take place.  If a student has completed an exam, the status of the exam will indicate what stage the exam is currently in (in progress, pending at auditor, approved by auditor).

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If the exam has been approved by the auditor, you will see at least two alert flags.

  • Green flags indicate no violations.  If a student is authenticated and completes the exam with no violations, he/she will have two green alert flags.
  • Yellow flags indicate possible violations.  These suggest that a violation of the rules has occurred, but the student was likely not cheating.  For example, if the students’ young child runs into the room during the exam session, the auditor will flag the violation with a yellow flag.
  • Red flags indicate violation. A violation of the exam rules has occurred. When a student receives a red flag violation, the instructor will also receive an e-mail about the incident.

Instructors can view details of the alerts and watch the exam video by clicking on the View link next to the students’ flag alerts.  Videos will remain available for 30 days, after which it is deleted from the Examity system.

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5. Reaching Examity Support

Support is available 24 hours a day.

Call: 1-(855)-392-6489 or 1-(855)-EXAMITY

Email: support@examity.com

Live Chat: Click the tab on the bottom of your screen

Examity Online Video Proctoring – Quick Guide for Students

Download the UIS Examity Quick Guide for Students.

1. Accessing Examity

You can access Examity® through your course on Blackboard. Click on the ExamityUISSSO link within the course.

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Click to login to Examity.

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This will take you to your Examity dashboard.

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From here you can edit your profile, schedule exams, and make changes if you need to cancel or change a test time. Most importantly, this is where you’ll go to start your exams.

2. Getting Started

Setting Up Your Profile: To get started, update your Examity® profile by clicking in the My Profile section of the Dashboard. You will need to upload a picture of your UIS Student ID or a government issued photo ID, select your time zone, and set your security questions.

Please note the importance of selecting the correct time zone.  This will be used in scheduling your test with the proctoring center.  You can confirm your selected time zone by looking at the time in the upper right hand corner.

Once you have set up your profile, you can bypass this step for future exams.

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Scheduling Your Exam: When you are ready to schedule an exam, click “Schedule Exam” on your dashboard or on the top navigation bar.

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You will see a calendar. If you are scheduling your test more than 24 hours in advance, you can just select the date and time you want. If you are scheduling it less than 24 hours in advance, make sure the on-demand scheduling option is enabled in the top right-hand side of the screen.

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Paying for Exam Proctoring:  You will pay for your exam proctoring session at the time you schedule the exam.  Rates for the proctoring session vary based on the length of the exam and the level of proctoring service selected by the instructor.  Additional fees apply if you use on-demand scheduling (exam occurs within 24 hours). 

Rescheduling or Canceling Your Exam: If you need to change or cancel your test appointment, click Reschedule/Cancel, and select the exam you want to change from the menu that appears.

3. Taking Your Exam

To take your exam, make sure you have your webcam and microphone set-up on your computer.  Sign into Blackboard, then your class.  Return to the Examity® Dashboard by clicking on the ExamityUISSSO sign-on link within your class.

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Click to login to Examity.

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This will take you to your Examity dashboard.

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Once on the Examity dashboard, click “Begin Scheduled Exam”, and select your exam. You will then be connected to your proctor. Note: MAKE SURE YOUR POP-UP BLOCKER IS DISABLED otherwise you will not be able to connect with your proctor!

Your proctor will walk you through the test authentication process, which will include verifying your identity, going over the exam rules, scanning your work area and desk, answering your security questions, and agreeing to the User Agreement.

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Once you have finished the authentication process, you will see a screen that says “Begin Exam”, and your exam will open. If your test is password protected, your proctor will tell you the password when the prompt to enter it appears.

4.  Reaching Examity Support. 

Support is available 24 hours a day.

  • Call: 1 (855) EXAMITY or 1 (855) 392-6489
  • Email: support@examity.com
  • Live Chat: Click the tab on the bottom of your screen

How to Give Select Students Extra Time on a Blackboard Exam

  1. Build your test as usual and deploy in a content area.
  2. Click the drop down arrow next to the deployed test and select Edit the Test Options. The test options allow the instructor to set the testing criteria for the entire class.

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  1. Part 3 of the Test Options screen is Test Availability Exceptions. Students receiving test exceptions will receive testing criteria that varies from the rest of the class.

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  1. In Part 3, Click Add User or Group to bring up a pop-up screen. Select the user or group with the exception and click Submit.

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  1. Adjust the options as needed for that user or group.
    • Attempts may be Single Attempt, Multiple Attempt, or Unlimited Attempt.
    • Timer may be used to set the amount of time the user or group receives.
    • Availability may be used to set the time window for which the user or group may access the exam.
    • Force Completion requires the user or group to complete the exam in one sitting.

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  1. Submit the Test Options.

Course Availability for Students with Incompletes

A few weeks after the semester ends, a course will automatically become unavailable to all students.  If you have a student with an incomplete who needs access to a course after this occurs, the course can be made available to just that student. This is a two part process.  First, you would need to mark the course as unavailable to the other students who were enrolled in the class.  Then, you will make the course available (open) again.  Although this will open up the course again, only the student marked as available will have access. To make the course unavailable to the other students in the class:

  1. In the Control Panel, go to Users & Groups and Users.
  2. The right-most column shows the Availability of the course for each student, when the course is made available.  If the course is available, students having ‘Yes’ in that column will have access.  If the course is not available, all students will not have access.  
  3. To change a student’s availability from ‘Yes’ to ‘No’,  hover on the username for a student to make the drop-down arrow appear.  Click on the drop-down arrow and menu  and select Change User’s Availability in the Course.
  4. Change the drop-down option for Available (this course only) to be No and click Submit.
  5. Repeat steps 3 & 4 for all students who need to be made unavailable.
  6. Once completed for all students except for the student with the Incomplete, confirm that only the student with the Incomplete has ‘Yes’ in the Availability column.

To make the course available again:

  1. In the Control Panel, go to Customization and Properties.
  2. Under step 3, change the Make Course Available to Yes and click Submit.

Mobile Learning

SlideShare Presentation: Online and on the move 

BLACKBOARD

MOBILE POLLING SITES

TWITTER IN THE CLASSROOM

ELECTRONIC TEXTBOOKS

INFOGRAPHICS
LECTURE CAPTURING
EMBEDDING DOCUMENTS
SYNCHRONOUS COLLABORATION

Strategies for Increasing Course Evaluation Response Rates

The Timing – A barrier for course evaluation completion is timing the evaluation close to finals (Cottreau & Hatfield 2001).  At UIS, course evaluations become available three weeks prior to the end of the semester.  Thus, begin asking for feedback earlier in the semester!

You might be concerned that that timing may be too early to get accurate feedback from students, as not all activities and assignments have yet been completed.  Research has shown, however, that the results of course evaluations completed earlier in a course are highly correlated with results of course evaluations completed finals week or after (McNulty et al. 2010).  Not only do you increase the likelihood of having a higher response rate, students completing evaluations earlier provided more qualitative feedback than students completing evaluations later (McNulty et al. 2010).  At UIS, these additional (write-in) comments are provided only to the instructor and are not added to the instructor’s faculty file.

The Frequency – For online course evaluations, post announcements as many times and in as many places as you can:

  • Post the link in your syllabus.
  • Create a specific announcement about the evaluation.

Sample Announcement – Today, course evaluations are open online. These are very important in improving the quality of classes at UIS. They also are an important instrument used in the promotion and tenure process for faculty members. Please take a few moments to fill out the evaluations for this class and any others you may be taking that have online evaluations: https://uisapp-s.uis.edu/evaluation/ . These evaluations are available only through Saturday, May 4. (Thanks!)

  • Include the link to the evaluation in emails and announcements until the end date (And remember the course evaluation is available at x until x date).
  • Add as an item to the course calendar

Tell Students Why It’s Important – Remind students why course evalutions are important at UIS and remind them that you cannot see the feedback until after final grades are due and that it will not impact their grade in any way.  Students are more likely to respond if they knew how their evaluations will be used and what decisions their responses will influence (Kidd & Latif 2003, Anderson et al. 2005; Cottreau & Hatfield 2001; Hatfield & Coyle 2013).  The largest factor for not completing evaluations is that students believe the evaluations will not result in change or would not benefit them (Hatfield & Coyle 2013).

The Method – For on-campus classes at UIS, faculty have the choice of having online or in-class evaluations.  Research is mixed on whether online or paper evaluations result in higher response rate, as shown below:  

  • Compared with paper surveys, online evaluations have been associated with increased response rates (Barnett & Matthews 2009; Anderson et al. 2005; Thorpe 2002; Hatfield & Coyle 2013).  
  • Online ratings produce a lower response rate than in-class ratings (Avery, Bryant, Mathios, Kang, & Bell, 2006; Benton, Webster, Gross, & Pallett, 2010 ; IDEA, 2011; Nulti, 2008).

Your class’s typical attendance rate should be considered when deciding whether the in-class or online evaluation will be more effective. 

Why are Course Evaluations Important at UIS?

Goal #1 of the UIS Strategic Plan states that “UIS will achieve academic excellence through excellence in teaching and learning and excellence in scholarship.”  Action Step #4 of the UIS Strategic Plan states that UIS will “Improve the assessment of learning outcomes and of teaching; use aggregated information from course evaluations to inform faculty development programming:  a) Establish and fund a program to support improvements in the assessment of learning outcomes and program review.  b) Adopt a new course evaluation instrument.  c) Implement a multidimensional approach to teaching evaluation.  d) Use the data from the improved teaching evaluation approach as the basis for issues addressed in faculty development programs.”

Presently, course evaluations are used for retention and promotion decisions and for course improvement.  Completion of student course evaluations is imperative in evaluating curricular trends and teaching effectiveness, particularly if no other assessment methods are performed (Hatfield & Coyle 2013).

Research suggestions that student ratings of courses and faculty are a reliable and useful method of evaluating teaching and course effectiveness (Kidd & Latif 2003).  In fact, student evaluations are as reliable as peer evaluations, provided that response rates are good (Paulsen 2002).  However, course evaluations should be used in conjunction with other evaluation tools, such as the peer evaluation and a teaching portfolio, when evaluating the effectiveness of an instructor.  Research has found that faculty members receiving the best evaluations are not always the most effective teachers according to students (Surratt & Desselle 2007).  The Dr. Fox Effect, as seen in the following video, suggests that a highly expressive presenter can earn high evaluations even when the content presented is nonsensical.

Accessing Moodle at UIS

UIS maintains an instance of Moodle for faculty and staff use at https://uistraining1.uis.edu/login/index.php

If you have a UIS NetID, you may access the Moodle site by click on the “Continue” button on the right side of the Moodle home page.

If you are a guest user of the Moodle system, your UIS contact will send you instructions for accessing the site.

What is Respondus LockDown Browser?

Respondus LockDown Browser is a customized browser that increases the security and integrity of online testing in Blackboard.  More information on Respondus LockDown Browser can be found at the link below:

http://www.uis.edu/informationtechnologyservices/iss/respondus.html#lockdown

Horizon Report

Each year the New Media Consortium (NMC) and Educause Learning Initiative (ELI) publish the Horizon Report, a look ahead at technologies that will impact education in the next one, three, and five years.

The report “charts the landscape of emerging technologies for teaching, learning and creative expression” based on interactions with “technology professionals, campus technologists, faculty leaders from colleges and universities, and representatives of leading corporations” (from Horizon Project).

More Information

Best Practices for Synchronous Sessions

Carefully Organize Your Synchronous Session

  • Make sure to create an outline for your session.
  • What topics do you want to cover?
  • What materials will you need to share?
  • What questions will you ask?

Connecting to Your Synchronous Session

  • Make sure you are using a high speed Internet connection. Audio and video sharing requires a stable, higher-bandwidth connection that some wireless networks aren’t capable of supplying.
  • Join the live session before the scheduled start time.
  • Conduct an audio check.

Synchronous Session Best Practices

  • Offer Students Options – Consider making the synchronous sessions optional or offering several sessions from which your students may choose.  Requiring synchronous sessions reduces the flexibility that appeals to, and is often necessary for the schedules of, many online students. They will appreciate your extra efforts in schedule accommodations.
  • Inform Your Students – Send an email or post information in Blackboard for your students explaining the technology and how they will use it.
  • Schedule a Trial Run – Test your web conferencing tool first, if possible, with someone who can log in from a different location as a “test audience.”  Then you can run through your materials early, checking that everything loads properly.
  • Use the Moderator Override Functions – Learn how to use moderator override functions, such as turning students’ mics down.
  • Mention Student Names – Use students’ names as frequently as possible. It grabs their attention and makes the online environment feel more personal.
  • Use Emoticons – Learn to use emoticons to substitute for facial expressions, and learn to interpret your students’ virtual facial expressions.
  • Get Comfortable with Instant Messaging – Learn to monitor the instant messaging feature while you, a guest speaker, or other students are using microphones. This ensures participants without microphones can fully participate.
  • Record Sessions – Recording your sessions allows students who could not attend to listen to the recorded session presentation.
  • Solicit Feedback – Ask for feedback from your students to help you improve content and delivery for your next course by using the polling feature

What is Synchronous Learning?

Synchronous learning employs a software that provides a way for a groups to meet online, at the same time, and verbally communicate with each other. It allows for real-time learning and collaboration. Not only can participants communicate with each other, but they can also push content to the rest of the audience, such as a presentation or a web page. Additionally, class meetings should be recorded for students unable to attend the meeting or for future use.

Ideas

  • Group Discussions
  • Debates
  • Instructor Lectures
  • Faculty and Student Presentations
  • Virtual Advising
  • Guest Speakers

Synchronous Learning Tools @ UIS

Microsoft Lync

Google+ Hangouts through the UIS Google Apps for Education

Blackboard Mobile Learn

Information about Blackboard Mobile Learn can be found at:

http://www.uis.edu/informationtechnologyservices/iss/blackboard.html

 

Testing in Blackboard: Clearing a Student’s Attempt

To clear a student’s attempt:

  1. Go the the course Control Panel
  2. Under the Assessment area, Click on Gradebook link
  3. Locate the student who you wish to reset, and click on the padlock “In Progress” icon, or the exclamation mark (!) “Completed” icon.
  4. Click on the View button to access the students’ quiz attempt page.
  5. Clear the assessment attempt by clicking on the Clear Attempt button.

Posting & Deploying a Test for Students

To deploy a test:

  1. Go to the content area where you want to deploy the test (i.e. Assignments, Course Materials, etc.)
  2. Click on the blue Evaulate button and select Create Test.
  3. Click on the name of the test you wish to deploy and click OK.
  4. On the “Test Options” page that appears, you will select how and when your students will view the test.
    • Under “1. Test Information,” you will see the information you entered while creating the test. The description will appear beneath the link to the test in your content area.
    • Under “2. Test Availability,” choose from these options:
      • Make the Link Available. Select “Yes.” You can limit the availability of the test using the Display After/Until tool below. If you choose “No” students will not be able to view the exam.
      • Add a New Announcement for this Test. Select “Yes” to have Blackboard post an announcement that the test is available.
      • Multiple Attempts. If you would like students to have more than one attempt at the test, check the box for multiple attempts. Select either “Unlimited Attepmts” or “Numbers of Attempts.” If you choose “Number of attempts,” enter the specific number of times you would like your students to be able to attempt the test.
      • Force Completion. If you would like to force students to complete the test the first time they launch (click on) the test, select this option.
      • Set Timer. The timer in Blackboard does not close the exam if a student exceeds the time limit. It simply sets an expected completion time and records the length of time each student spends in the exam. Instructors can view this information in the Grade Center column for the test. To set the timer, check the “Set Timer” checkbox and enter the time in hours and minutes.
      • Display After. Check the box and enter the date and time that the test should become available to students. If the box is not checked, the dates and times will not be saved.
      • Display Until. Check the box and enter the date and time that the test should no longer be available to students. If the box is not checked, the dates and times will not be saved.
      • Password. If you wish to have students enter a password to access the exam, check the box and enter the case-sensitive password. This tool is especially useful when proctoring exams or giving make-up exams for specific students.
    • Under “3. Self-assessment Options,” instructors choose how the test results are recorded.
      • Include this Test in the Grade Center Score Calculations. This option is turned on by default. If you do not wish for the test to count toward student total grades, uncheck the box.
      • Hide Results for this Test Completely from Instructor in Grade Center. If checked, this option hides all student scores from instructors. This information cannot be recovered by instructors, ITS or COLRS. Please do NOT check this option.
    • Under “4. Test Feedback,” select the feedback you wish students to see after they complete the test: Score, Submitted Answers, Correct Answers, and/or Feedback. Unchecking all boxes until the testing period ends is a common practice. Instructors may edit the feedback option after students are finished taking the test or grading is complete.
    • Under “5. Test Presentation,” instructors choose how a test is displayed to students.
      • All at Once. All questions are displayed on a single screen. This is a good option if your test includes fewer than 20 twenty multiple choice or true/false questions. If your test includes more questions or any essay questions, please consider presenting your test with the “one at a time” option.
      • One at a Time. If your test contains more than 20 questions or any essay questions, please select the “one at a time” option. This option forces students to click a “next” button to submit their work as they move through the exam. It can help prevent browser timeout issues. When “one at a time” questions presentation is selected, instructors can choose to Prohibit Backtracking, which that students see each question only once. Students cannot access questions they have previously submitted or change their answers.
      • Randomize Questions. Students will see questions in a different order each time they attempt a test.
  5. Click Submit.

Supplemental Video:

http://webcast2.uis.edu/multimedia/COLRSweb/deployTest/deployTest.html

Creating a Test in Blackboard

To create a test:

  1. Go to the Control Panel.
  2. Click on Course Tools > Tests, Surveys, and Pools > Tests
  3. Click on Build Test
  4. On the next screen, enter a Name for the test.
    If you like you may also add a Description (appears below the name of the test in your content area in Blackboard), and Instructions (appears above the test questions while students take the test).
  5. Click Submit.
  6. To add a new question:
    • Click on Create Question and select the type of question you would like to add (True/False, Multiple Choice, Essay, etc.).
    • Fill out the information for that question type.
    • Click OK.
  7. To reuse one or more questions from another test or pool:
    • Click on Reuse Question and select “Find from Pool or Test.”
    • Under “1. Pools and Tests to Search,” select the Pool or Test that contains the questions you would like to copy to your new test.
    • Under “2. Criteria,” check “All” to see all the questions contained in your pool or test. Check specfic type(s) of questions to limit the questions displayed.
    • Under “3. Assign Points,” you may choose to use the points currently assigned to the questions or assign a new point value.
    • Click Search to view the questions.
    • Check the box for each question you would like to copy into your new test.
    • Click on the blue “Add Selected” button to copy the questions into your test.
  8. To include a random block of questions from a pool (for example, to randomly select 10 questions from a pool of 30):
    • Click on Reuse Question and select “Create Random Block.”
    • Under “1. Search the Pools below,” select the Pool from which you would like to draw questions.
    • Under “2. Criteria,” check “All” to include all types of questions in your randome block. Or, if you’d like to limit your random block to specific types of questions (only multiple choice or true/false), check the specfic type(s) of questions to include.
    • Also under “2. Criteria,” enter the number of questions to include and the number of points each question should be worth.
    • Click Import.
  9. When your test is complete, click OK to leave the test.
  10. To post/deploy the test for students, please see “Posting & Deploying a Test for Students.”

Supplemental Video:

http://webcast2.uis.edu/multimedia/COLRSweb/CreateTest/CreateTest.htm

View and Grade Turnitin Assignments

To view and grade Turnitin Assignments:

Watch a video on how to access the Turnitin Assignment Inbox.

  1. Go to the Blackboard course that contains the Turnitin Assignment.
  2. Go to Control Panel > Course Tools > Turnitin Assignment
  3. Click on the Turnitin Assignment you wish to view or grade to go to the inbox for that assignment.
    Hint: Here you’ll see a listing of your students. If you don’t see all your students, click on “Roster Sync.”
  4. Now you have several options:
    • To view the originality report (sources that match your student’s paper), click on the colored bar in the Similarity column.
    • To grade the assignment click on the bubble icon in the Grade column.
  5. For more information on originality reports and grading options in Turnitin, please consult the Turnitin Manual for Instructors found here: http://pages.turnitin.com/rs/iparadigms/images/Blackboard_9_Integration_Instructor_Manual.pdf

Grading a Discussion Board Forum in Blackboard

*If you have set up your forum as a Graded Forum 
To grade a forum:

  1. Click on Discussions in your Course Content Menu or go to the Control Panel > Course Tools > Discussion Board
  2. Click on the Forum you want to grade
  3. Click on the “Grade Forum” button 
  4. Click on the chevron next to the Username of the student
  5. Click on Grade
  6. Enter Grade at the top of the page
  7. Scroll down to the bottom of the page, click OK
Supplemental Video:

Creating a Turnitin Assignment in Blackboard

To create a Turnitin Assignment:

Watch a video on how to create a Turnitin Assignment.

  1. In a content area (i.e. assignments) hover over the “Assessments” button 
  2. Click on “Turnitin Assignment”
  3. Choose type (most are just paper assignments)
  4. Click on the “Next Step” button
  5. Add Assignment Title and point value 
  6. Select the start date (date of when students can start turning in their submissions) 
  7. Select due date (the last day you will allow submissions) 
  8. Post date (the date that the grades you assign will appear to your students) 
  9. Click on “more options” to change other settings (see explanation below).
  10. Click the “Submit” button.

 Assignment – Optional Assignment Settings

When creating a paper assignment, the Instructor may select to view and change any of the advanced assignment options. The advanced assignment options are viewed by clicking on Optional settings at the bottom of the assignment creation or assignment update page.

Advanced assignment options are listed and described below. When an advanced
assignment option is changed the Instructor may also select whether or not this change should be the future default for any new assignments created. This allows the Instructor to automatically create all new assignments with their preference of advanced options rather than manually selecting the advanced options for every new assignment.

Late Submission

An instructor can enable submissions after the due date and time. To enable late
submissions, use the drop down menu next to “Allow submissions after the due date?” and select yes. The default setting is no. When enabled, students will be able to submit papers after the due date and time has passed as long as that student has not already submitted a paper to the assignment.

Student submissions after the due date and time will be marked with red text in the date column of the submission in the assignment inbox. A student cannot overwrite a submission past the assignment due date and time, even if the late submission option is enabled.

Generate Originality Reports for student submissions

  • immediately (first report is final) – Originality Reports for all submissions will be generated immediately.Students cannot resubmit papers. Submissions must be deleted by the instructor to enable resubmission.
  • immediately (can overwrite reports until due date) – Originality Reports for the initial submission by each student user to this assignment will be generated immediately. Students may resubmit as often as the student wishes until the assignment due date. Originality Reports for the second or subsequent submission will require a 24 hour delay before the Originality Report begins processing. Only the latest submission is available to the instructor or student. Previous versions are removed. Originality Reports will regenerate within an hour of the due date and time to allow student submissions to compare against one another within the assignment. A change in the Originality Report similarity index may result from the regeneration of the reports. This option is typically used when students are self-reviewing and revising their submissions and able to view the Originality Report. No resubmissions are allowed after the due date and time of the assignment.
  • on due date – Originality Reports will not be generated for any submission until the due date and time of the assignment. Students may resubmit as many timesas needed until the due date and time without receiving reports. Resubmissionsmay not be made after the due date and time of the assignment.

Exclude bibliographic material from Similarity Index for all papers in this assignment?

This feature of assignment creation provides instructors with the ability to control the option whether bibliographic material will automatically be excluded from Originality Reports. The default is no. Bibliographic materials can also be included and excluded when viewing the Originality Report. This setting cannot be modified after the first paper has been submitted.

Exclude quoted material from Similarity Index for all papers in this
assignment?

This feature of assignment creation provides instructors with the ability to control the option whether quoted material will automatically be excluded from Originality Reports. The default is no. Quoted materials can also be included and excluded when viewing the Originality Report. This setting cannot be modified after the first paper has been submitted.

Exclude small matches?

This feature of assignment creation provides instructors with the ability to
automatically exclude small matches from all Originality Reports generated within this assignment. To exclude small matches click yes.

Once yes has been clicked the Exclude matches by: option window will open. Enter into either the Word Count: or Percentage: fields the numerical value for small matches that will be excluded from Originality Reports in this assignment.

Instructors can adjust the exclude small matches assignment setting at any time by clicking on the edit icon to the right of the assignment name. The excluding small matches feature can be adjusted within each Originality Report as well. With this feature instructors have greater control on sifting out smaller matches, allowing them to focus on larger, more problematic and suspect matches within Originality Reports.

Allow Students to see Originality Reports?

This feature of assignment creation provides instructors with the ability to control the option to allow students to see Originality Reports within each created assignment. This option gives instructors more flexibility and control when creating assignments. Select yes to allow students to see the Originality Report for the assignment. The default setting is no.

Repository options

The instructor may choose from 2 options in the “Submit papers to:” pull-down menu. Instructors will be able to set the Submit papers to assignment option to store student papers in the standard paper repository, in the institution paper repository,

Repository Sources for Similarity Reports

The instructor is able to select the available repository sources to compare
submissions in the assignment against. This allows an instructor to disregard a source type if the comparison against this type of source is not needed.

The available search targets are listed under Search options. The targets with a check mark are those that will be searched. To remove a search target repository, click on the check box to remove the check mark. Clicking on an empty selection box next to the repository will re-add the repository as a search target. This selection will not alter any currently generated Originality Reports or Overall Similarity Index scores.

Currently available search targets are:

  • student paper repository – works previously submitted in classes and assignments on Turnitin
  • institution paper repository – a repository of student papers for the institution
  • current and archived internet – a repository of archived and live publicly available internet pages containing billions of pages of existing content and tens of thousands of new pages added daily
  • periodicals, journals, & publications – third party periodical, journal, and publication content including many major professional journals, periodicals, and business publications

Attach a rubric to the assignment

If you would like to use a rubric to grade the papers submitted to the assignment you may use the rubric list drop down menu to select a previously created or imported rubric or you can launch the rubric manager by clicking on the Launch Rubric Manager link and create a new rubric to attach to the assignment.

Enable e-rater® grammar check?

This feature is not enabled by default and may not be available for all accounts.
This feature of assignment creation provides instructors with the option to enable the e-rater® grammar and spelling check for all submissions to the assignment. When enabled student submissions receive detailed grammar feedback in GradeMark automatically through the e-rater® technology. Select yes to enable the e-rater® engine for the assignment. If this assignment option is not available then the e-rater® grammar check is disabled for the account. Contact the Turnitin account administrator to enable the e-rater® grammar check for the account.

(Optional) Select the ETS handbook level from the drop down menu. The ETS
handbooks provide students with in depth information about the grammar errors the e-rater® technology finds in their paper.

Select the dictionary used for the spelling check.

The Categories enabled by default option allows instructors to choose which
categories of feedback are enabled when viewing assignment submissions in
GradeMark. The default is to show the feedback for every category.

Changing Advanced Assignment Option Defaults

If any changes have been made to the advanced assignment options, an additional option will be available at the bottom of the options panel. The instructor is asked Would you like to save these options as your defaults for future assignments? Select yes to have all future assignment creations use the advanced assignment options that have been selected as the default setting. Select no to continue with the previous default advanced assignment option settings.

The default settings can be changed at any time when creating a new assignment or updating an existing assignment.

Determining Blackboard WebApp Server

To find the WebApp Server within Blackboard:

  1. Go to the Control Panel
  2. Left click on Course Tools
  3. Click on “Which WebApp Server” 
  4. Record the number for reference

Supplemental Video:

http://webcast2.uis.edu/multimedia/COLRSweb/WhichWebAppServer/WhichWebAppServer.html

Blackboard: Hiding Courses Sites in “My Courses”

Most courses close a few weeks after the end of each semester. To hide any additional courses you do not wish to view in the “My Courses” module:

  1. Log in to Blackboard.
  2. On the “My UIS” tab (the first page you see when you log in), locate the “My Courses” module.
  3. In the upper right corner of the “My Courses” module, click on the gear icon (see Fig. 1). When you hover over the gear icon, help text appears that reads “Manage My Courses Module Settings.”ManageMyCourses
    Figure 1. The Gear icon allows you to hide courses in the “My Courses” module.
  4. On the “Personalize: My courses” page, look for “1. Edit Courses List” section. Uncheck the the boxes for any courses you no longer wish to view.
  5. Click ” Submit.”

Note: Unchecking a course only removes the course from your view. You will still continue to have access to all of the courses in which you are enrolled or teach on the Courses tab in Blackboard.

Copying Content from Another Instructor’s Course Site

If you are a new instructor and need to have materials copied from another instructor’s course site, you will need to have instructor permissions in both sites. Please contact your department chair and/or the previous instructor for permissions. Once you have instructor-level access to the course site, you may copy the materials into your empty Blackboard course site.

I Can’t Find My Course Section on Blackboard

Instructors are assigned to Blackboard courses based on the UIS course schedule.  If you are not listed as the instructor of your course section in the course schedule, you will not have access to your Blackboard course site.

Please contact your program secretary or online coordinator to be listed as the instructor in the course schedule. Once listed as the instructor in the course schedule, you will have access to your course site within 24 hours.  

If access is needed more urgently, your program secretary or online coordinator can  contact COLRS to verify that you will be teaching the section.  He/she will need to provide us with the course name and number, course section, and your Net-ID.

Blackboard Course Sites for Tutorials, Projects, & Other Needs

Blackboard course sites are not automatically created for tutorials or graduate projects. If you would like a Blackboard course site for one-on-one work with a student, please contact COLRS.  If applicable, please provide the course name and course number.

Blackboard course sites can also be created for department uses, campus committees, and campus organizations.  UIS faculty or staff members can contact COLRS to make a request.

 

Joining Two or More Course Sections in One Blackboard Site

If you are teaching two or more sections of the same course, you may wish to combine them into a single Blackboard course site.

Combining Blackboard sections can lead to extremely large and difficult to manage discussion forums and/or confusion for students if you choose to combine an online course and a F2F course.

To request a combined course site, please complete this form.  You will need to know the course name, number, and the section numbers of the sections to combine.

Blackboard Gold Courses

A Gold Course is special type of Blackboard course site that is named “GOLD – Name of your course” and is identified with a “999” prefix.  A Gold Course is never deleted and is backed up daily.

How do I use a Gold Course?

  • Gold Courses can be used to develop and update your course content.  Editing your content in a Gold Course rather than a teaching course site preserves your student’s work in case of grade challenges.
  • Gold Courses are ‘clean’ versions of your courses.  Students are never enrolled and you will never teach within a Gold Course.
  • Gold Courses can be copied into the empty Blackboard course sites that are created for your course sections each semester.
  • Hint: Make your content unavailable (hidden from students) in your Gold Course. When you copy to your course shells (empty Blackboard site for the semester), you simply have to release it.

How do I get a Gold course?

Contact COLRS to request the creation of a Gold Course. We will need to know the name, department, course number of the course (CHE 301 or ART 441).  Also, if you would like an existing course copied into your Gold Course’s shell, please let us know the semester and section of the originating course.

One Gold Course may be requested for each course format you teach: 8-week, 16-week, online, blended, and on-ground.

Blackboard Course Creation

Each semester, a Blackboard course shell is created for each course section offered at UIS. The course name begins with the year and semester.

Example: A chemistry course taught in Fall 2013 might be named: 133CHE10154321

13 – Last two digits of year
3 – Fall semester (spring is coded as a 1 and summer is coded as a 2)
CHE – Three digit department abbreviation
101 – Course number
54321 – Course reference number from Banner

Additional Course Creation Points

  • Instructors listed in the course schedule will have access to their empty Blackboard course sites at http://bb.uis.edu
  • Students are enrolled automatically two weeks prior to the first day of class each semester.
  • Students cannot access a course until it is either (1) automatically opened on the first day of classes according to the published academic calendar, or (2) opened by the instructor prior to the first day, if desired.
  • Instructors who are not teaching an online class can choose whether to use the Blackboard course. If you will not use the site, you can make the site unavailable to your students.
  • Each course contains an announcement stating the Blackboard course site may or may not be used at the instructor’s discretion.
  • If a student drops or withdraws from a class, he/she is not automatically removed because course grades and statistics would be removed along with the student.
  • You can hide a student instead of removing them permanently.

What is Blackboard?

Blackboard is a web-based course management learning system that instructors can use to organize course content. Instructors can manage the content to provide students with supplemental materials in a blended course format or full-course activities such as blogs, journals, and assignments for an online class.There are many tools such as the discussion boards, virtual chat and classroom, self and peer assessment which allow for increased communication and collaboration.

Blackboard has an easy to navigate interface for students and a simple file upload process that requires no knowledge of HTML coding or web-based formatting. However, if you are comfortable with HTML you can use the programming language to structure and enhance your course within Blackboard.

Blackboard allows faculty members 24/7 access to their course for instructional updates and design.

Voicethread

Voicethread is a Web 2.0 tool for conversations around media — images, documents/powerpoint slides, and videos. Students and faculty can make comments using video (from a web cam), audio (upload audio file or phone in comments), or text (typing).

Ideas for Use

  • Icebreakers
  • Interactive lectures
  • Student presentations with authentic peer assessment
  • Group and personal reflections

How to Access

VoiceThread is free for K-12 educators, but not for higher education. Pricing is based on who needs to create and how often.  COLRS purchased a small number of licenses for Voicethread to explore the technology. If you are interested in trying this technology in your class, please experiment with a free account which allows you to create three Voicethreads for free. If you find you use Voicethread heavily, please contact us for a full license.

Helpful Hints

More Information

Turnitin Plagiarism Detection

The Internet has perpetuated the age old problem of plagiarism. Turnitin can assist faculty in detecting and preventing plagiarism. It is also an excellent assignment collection, grading, and feedback tool, and can be used as an online collaborative learning tool where students can get feedback from their classmates.

View a video overview of Turnitin.

The Turnitin database includes:

  • Over 10 Billion Web Pages Crawled & Archived
  • Over 70 Million Student Papers
  • Over 10,000 Major Newspapers, Magazines & Scholarly Journals
  • Thousands Of Books Including Literary Classics
  • Printable Reports
  • Side-By-Side Comparison

Turnitin provides the ability for faculty to:

  • Quickly and conveniently identify how much material in a student’s paper is available on the Internet.
  • Deter students who may otherwise be tempted to use sources inappropriately.
  • Address the issue of proper citation of sources in a paper.
  • Pick up tips for writing assignments that discourage plagiarism and encourage independent thought.
  • Find handouts for students on plagiarism, proper citation, and writing and research skills

Ideas for Using Turnitin

  • Peer-to-Peer Paper Review’s
  • Electronic Writing Portfolio’s
  • Online Commenting
  • Multiple Rubric Grading

How to Access

Turnitin is an available tool within Blackboard.  The ‘Turnitin Assignments’ link can be found under the Course Tools section of the Control Panel.  If that link is not there, you will need to add the Turnitin tool to your course by clicking on ‘Tool Availability’ under the Customization section of the Control Panel.

Turnitin Resources

Other Resources

A Template for Feedback

A publication by Virginia Commonwealth University provides 7 Steps for Providing Constructive Online Discussion Feedback Successfully.  Their suggested template for feedback includes:
  1. Start with something positive – “You did very well in this week’s discussion.”
  2. State the grade and reason right away – “This week you earned 20/25 points.”
  3. State the correction as a reminder or recommendation – “Remember, five postings are needed for full participation points.”
  4. Provide an example or tip to reach the goal – “Here’s an example of a solution that earned full points.”
  5. State your expectation – “In the upcoming weeks, I will be looking for….”
  6. Remind them of available help – “Your success is important to me, so please email me when you have questions.”
  7. End with something motivational – “This was a tough assignment, but you did well overall.”
The complete article can be found here.

Students’ Expectations Regarding Feedback

Journal of Educators Online study of online graduate students looking at what should be included in effective feedback and how should effective feedback be provided to students found five themes of effective instructor feedback:

Themes of Effective Instructor Feedback

Theme

Summary

Student Involvement and Individuation Effective feedback is a mutual process involving both student and instructor.

  • Feedback should include personalized messages & examples that reflect the student’s contributions
  • Feedback should be private
Being Positively Constructive Effective feedback provides constructive guidance that builds confidence.

  • Feedback should be positive, encouraging & friendly
  • Feedback should provide suggestions for improvement
Gentle Guidance Effective feedback guides through explicit expectations and ongoing coaching.

  • Feedback should create structure & guidance
  • Feedback should provide clear ground rules & state expectations
Timeliness Timelines for effective feedback are mutually established and met.

  • Feedback should be prompt
  • Instructor should set expectations on time frame for feedback & announce if time frame will not be met
Future Orientation Effective feedback is applicable to future situations.

  • Feedback should guide students on how to improve for future class activities

Advantages of Online Group Work

Online group work provides several advantages to students.  Two major advantages include:

1.  Increased socialization and connectivity with classmates.  Some activities that could help groups become more connected include posting pictures, sharing details about themselves (e.g., work experiences, hobbies), and starting a discussion board to discuss non-classroom topics (e.g., current events, items of interest).

2.  An opportunity to develop and practice group and team skills, including problem-solving, project management, and asynchronous and synchronous communication.

What other advantages does online group work provide your students?

Online Groups & Individual Personalities

Understanding individual personalities can help students (and faculty) handle unproductive situations within group work.  Elearners identify five personalities that can cause distribution to group dynamics and provides suggestions for working with those personalities within a group.

Students can complete a Team Style Inventory to find out their dominate and preferred personality when in a team or group setting.

One common problem groups experience among team members is the  “free-rider” or social-loafing team member.  Wikibooks identifies several causes of social loafing.  Some things faculty can do to reduce social loafing from occurring within a group include:

  • Create appropriate group sizes for the project.
  • Make individual contributions meaningful; create task interdependence among group members.
  • Promote the use of tools that capture individual contributions to make each student’s contributions more visible (e.g., wiki, Google Docs)
  • Encourage groups to have a progress-checker, to hold members accountable for contributions and to remind them of deadlines and expectations. 

Another problem experienced by groups is a dominating group member.  The following site provides a useful table of Assertive vs. passive vs. aggressive behavior .

 

Group Norms: A Tool for Decreasing Online Group Conflict

Each member of an online group will have his or her own expectations of how the project should be completed and how it develops.  Students might find it  worthwhile for their group to establish a set of norms, or common expectations, early in the group work so that each group member has a similar understanding of issues.  Some considerations include:

  • How will the group function?  Will someone serve as the group leader or will everyone be responsible for keeping the group moving forward?
  • When will the group meet?  Will the group meet asynchronously, synchronously or a combination?
  • What technology will the group use to support the decision making process of the group (e.g., E-mail, Blackboard Group Discussion Board, Blackboard Group Chat, Voice-Over-IP, Telephone Conference Calls)?
  • What technology will the group use to support the resource-sharing process of the group (e.g., e-mailing resources as attachments, posting resources as attachments to the Blackboard Group Discussion Board, posting resources to a wiki)?
  • What technology will the group use to support the creation of the group paper (e.g., e-mailing versions of the paper as attachments, posting versions of the paper as attachments to the Blackboard Group Discussion Board, hosting the paper online using a Wiki or GoogleDocs)?
  • When will tasks be completed? Will the group stagger the completion of the various tasks or will it all be completed at once?
  • Who will complete various tasks?  Will individuals be assigned to different tasks or will the group work collectively on all tasks?

Instructors can encourage groups to develop these norms early in the group project by making it a required activity after the groups are formed.

Collaborative tools, such as the group wiki tool in Blackboard, could be used for the members to collectively develop the norms.

Student Resources for Group Effectiveness

The following resources may be worth sharing with your students as they prepare to work as a member of an online group.  Please share others that you use as a comment.