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.
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:
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 could be used for the members to collectively develop the norms.
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:
Unfortunately, group conflicts sometimes aren’t revealed to the instructor until the end of the project. Encouraging or requiring progress reports or feedback from students at specific intervals may help you to identify trouble spots.
For semester-long projects, a mid-semester feedback form is useful. In “Online Groups and Social Loafing: Understanding Student-Group Interactions,” Piezon and Donaldson suggest including multiple evaluation points so that “group members are aware that their contributions are salient and being observed by others. Members who are performing poorly are given several opportunities to increase their performance.”
Another strategy is to prevent conflicts by keeping the groups on track and on task by requiring small deliverables for the project throughout the semester.
With all the uncertainty that we all have for this Fall, our students definitely feel these stresses. One way that we can reduce this uncertainty is by contacting our students early to let them know what we are planning for our Fall classes. This includes whether or not there will be face-to-face sessions planned and/or synchronous online sessions via Zoom and dates/times if you have them already.
Even though our Canvas courses aren’t populated yet, you can get a list of student emails from Enterprise following the instructions below and contact them before they are added to your Canvas course. Students will be populated into Canvas on August 17. After this you can message them directly through Canvas. (More on this topic can be found in the COLRS Teaching Blog)
Instructions to access students enrolled in courses using Self-service (Enterprise):
1. Go to the Enterprise Self-Service system. (https://apps.uillinois.edu/selfservice/ )
2 Click on UIS.
3. Login with your UIS NetID and Password.
4. Click on the Faculty & Advisor Services tab across the top of the page.
5. Click on the Faculty Services link.
6. Click on Class List – Summary to view your class roster in a condensed format.
7. Click “Display E-mail Addresses” at the bottom of the page.
By Layne Morsch, FDRO Faculty Associate
While email is one of the main modes of communication for most of us faculty, many of our students don’t regularly check their email no matter how much it is recommended. Canvas has a good solution with the Canvas Inbox. There are several reasons the Canvas Inbox is superior to regular email:
View this post to learn how to send messages using the Canvas Inbox.
Lucinda Parmer from Southeastern Oklahoma State University has provided Alternatives to the Traditional Exam as Measures of Student Learning Outcomes. The article proposes many alternative means of assessing students including:
As you take a moment to reflect on your experiences teaching during the Spring 2020 semester, COLRS encourages faculty to discuss your teaching experiences and further develop your skills in teaching in an online or blended environment. Upcoming opportunities include:
Throughout the summer, COLRS will be offering workshops on Technology Tools for Remote Delivery, Blended Learning Best Practices, and HyFlex Teaching. Check the COLRS Workshop calendar for dates and Zoom connection links. These workshops are free and available to all UIS faculty and staff (full or part-time).
COLRS Building Digital Community Course on CanvasThis self-paced faculty development course meets the requirements of the Higher Learning Commission for required faculty training in online instruction. It consists of six modules: Foundations of Online Learning, Accessibility, Instructional Design, Learning Theories, Facilitating Online Learning, Putting it Together. This course is free and available to all UIS faculty and staff (full or part-time). COLRS Canvas Migration Resources on CanvasThis Canvas site is a central location for support, materials, and resources to help you migrate your course to Canvas. These resources are publicly available.
Illinois Online Network (ION) Course Options
ION offers several non-credit courses including Overview of Online Courses, Blended Learning Design & Instruction, Instructional Design, Student Assessment, and many more. See the ION schedule for all upcoming course offerings. These courses are free for UIS faculty and staff (use code DV412 during registration).
For-Credit Course Offerings
UIS offers relevant for-credit courses. Please contact Human Resources for tuition reimbursement possibilities.
EDL 515 – Online Teaching and Learning. This course will introduce students to online and blended teaching and learning. Major concepts and issues, research in the field, and emerging technologies are covered, as well as practical strategies for designing and teaching online, which students actually get to practice in the course.
EDL 555 – Foundation for Technology in the CurriculumBasic technology skills and knowledge necessary for today’s education professionals. Computer operation, electronic communication, and computer applications with emphasis on the tools most applicable to the classroom setting.
As we near the end of this semester, we are getting closer to moving our classes from Blackboard to Canvas. From an accessibility standpoint this is a GREAT time to do several things. The first is to clean up and remove any files from Blackboard that you don’t use anymore. The second is to take the opportunity to make sure the files you are using are accessible. To help with this, the digital accessibility remediation team of student workers will be working over the summer. If you would like them to help make your files accessible please contact Vance Martin email@example.com.
If you rely on a paper-based final exam for your face-to-face courses, Blackboard can be used to administer your exam remotely. The COLRS blog has instructions on creating exams and posting exams in Blackboard. If your exam currently existing in Word or another software program, you’ll need to convert it into a Blackboard exam. Depending on the length of your exam, the simplest and fastest approach to convert your exam to Blackboard may be to copy and paste your questions from Word into a Blackboard test. Respondus can be used to convert more lengthy exams for Blackboard. Formatting an exam for Respondus can take time, so you’ll want to consider whether its use is worth the time to download and use it. COLRS can help you determine which approach may be easier for your course.
As Provost Papini mentioned in his e-mail to faculty yesterday, UIS recommends two proctoring solutions for remote courses. The first solution is Respondus Monitor with LockDown Browser . Respondus Monitor is a fully- automated tool that uses a student’s webcam to record the exam session. Suspicious testing behavior is automatically flagged by the software, and instructors are alerted to preview the alert flags. Respondus Monitor is free for faculty and students to use and it is integrated with Blackboard. LockDown Browser must be used to use Respondus Monitor. To use Respondus Monitor, follow the directions for preparing a test for LockDown browser. After selecting Respondus LockDown browser, also select the Respondus Monitor option. Students will be required to download and use LockDown browser for the exam.
The second proctoring solution is Examity Online Proctoring. Through the student’s webcam, Examity uses live proctors to observe and record the exam session. There is a fee for students to use Examity. Unfortunately, Examity’s proctoring facility has been shutdown because of COVID-19. Presently, they expect to be closed for a couple more weeks. If you hope to use Examity, you must e-mail COLRS to let us know the course that will have a proctored exam. Examity provides us with weekly updates on when they expect live, online proctoring to resume. We are hoping they will be resuming live, online proctoring by finals week, but there is a chance that might not be the case. In the event that live, online proctoring will not be available in time, COLRS will work with you to move to Respondus Monitor.
As our classes and meetings turn to synchronous, online options, you may be finding yourself more exhausted than normal. We have heard from both faculty and staff that online, synchronous video conversations are more tiring than their face-to-face equivalents. Dr. Steven Hickman, UC San Diego Clinical Associate Professor of Family Medicine & Public Health, provides these tips for managing Zoom exhaustion:
Dr. Suzanne Degges-White, NIU Professor of Counseling and Higher Education, provides additional tips in reducing Zoom fatigue:
Despite the downside of Zoom exhaustion, COLRS staff appreciate having the ability to see and connect with UIS faculty and staff using Zoom during the last few weeks. Although it does not replace the face-to-face connections that we miss, we hope that you are finding Zoom useful in connecting with your students and colleagues.
Now that we have completed two weeks of remote teaching, it is the ideal time to have a “how’s it going” conversation with your students. This personal outreach can be beneficial in seeing how each one of your students is adapting to their new learning environment and if they are experiencing any new personal, family, or work-related changes that may be impacting their learning. While some students who are struggling will reach out to you on their own, others may not share any challenges they are experiencing until they are asked.
Some faculty have found value in having a phone call or Zoom session with each student. Others have reached out using a personalized e-mail to each student. No matter what your preference may be, you may consider asking your students questions such as:
When reconnecting with your students, they may express issues or concerns that expand beyond your course. The Keep Learning – Guide to Remote Learning at UIS may direct you to campus resources that may be of assistance in helping them. The Counseling Center can provide remote sessions for students. TeleHealth appointments can be requested from Health Services. Other Student Affairs Offices and Centers can be reached via e-mail or via voice message.
As emphasized as a value in the UIS Strategic Compass, the UIS community seeks to understand the world around us through the pursuit of scholarship that is challenging and significant. In the past couple of weeks, COLRS has been approached by UIS faculty who would like to discuss research possibilities relating to the campus-wide transition to remote teaching. If you are interested in participating in an initial discussion about potential project ideas, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. In your e-mail, please share any immediate areas of interest that you would like to raise in the discussion. COLRS will coordinate the scheduling of a Zoom session in the upcoming weeks for those who show an interest.
If you already have a student with a documented disability with the Office of Disability Services, please consider their unique learning needs as you adapt to a virtual classroom. However, twenty-five percent of the population has some form of physical, learning, or cognitive disability so you may have a student with a need and you are unaware of it. A virtual classroom environment may create learning challenges for students who may not have those challenges in a face-to-face environment. COLRS has accessibility resources and a searchable accessibility blog that provides guidance on improving the accessibility of digital content.
As you prepare your course for teaching remotely, here are some basic accessibility tips
For additional assistance in improving the accessibility of your virtual classroom, please contact the COLRS Campus Accessibility Specialist. The Digital Accessibility Remediation Team is able to help you make your digital content accessible remotely.
Finally, UIS employees and students are able to download and use JAWS, ZoomText, or Fusion for free on their home computer through June 30. These products provide screen reading, screen magnification, and/or visual enhancement capabilities.
What is Zoombombing?
Zoombombing is a new form of Internet trolling in which a participant uses Zoom’s screensharing features to interrupt and disrupt meetings and classes. Many Zoom sessions, including several universities classes, have experienced Zoombombers this week.
How Can You Prevent Zoombombing in Your Classes?
You can use your meeting and host settings to prevent students from distracting other students in your class session, as well as preventing unwanted participants from joining your class session. Some suggestions include:
Despite the possible challenges associated with Zoombombers, Zoom continues to be a valuable learning tool that allows your students to maintain a sense of connectivity with you and their classmates. You don’t need to use all of these preventive measures. Choose one or two that allows you to use the Zoom to meet the needs of your class. If you need help talking about which feature might be the best in your particular class, please contact COLRS at email@example.com.
UIS Zoom Resources:
Blackboard Announcements are an ideal way to post time-sensitive information critical to student success. Add announcements to your Blackboard for these types of course activities:
You can also use your announcements to offer encouragement and reassurance for navigating these challenging times.
Announcements can be sent immediately to students via email. When creating your announcement in Blackboard, simply check “send copy of this announcement immediately” and each student will receive a copy in email right away. They will also see the announcement when they log into Blackboard.
For more information about creating and sending announcements in Blackboard, please check out the COLRS blog.
As your students adjust to the many changes that are impacting their lives and education, lessening any uncertainty through your interactions and communications with them becomes ever important. If you haven’t already reached out to your students, it is critical that you do so within the next few days. These initial communications should orient your students to their new learning environment and any tools that will be used. If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed with where to start, the Quality Matters Emergency Remote Instruction Checklist provides useful tips and actionable strategies for adapting to these changes. Some highlights from the checklist include:
COLRS continues to be available when you need us. Don’t forget that the Teaching Remotely Faculty Champions are also willing to help with questions you may have. And when you need a short break, check out the “I Will Survive, Coronavirus version for teachers going online.”
We understand that test integrity is critical. We offer these suggestions for considering testing options.
1. Instead of a test, you might consider alternative assessments such as a project, paper, or other type of assessment. Vanderbilt University has a nice website on Classroom Assessment Techniques that you might find helpful as you think through your curriculum. COLRS staff is also available to assist in thinking about alternative assessments for your courses.
2. Respondus Monitor is a good solution for low-stakes tests. UIS has a contract with Respondus that includes both Respondus LockDown Browser and Respondus Monitor, a fully-automated proctoring solution for online tests that builds on Respondus LockDown Browser. This option does not cost the student any additional fees. When possible, please use this option to improve affordability for our students. Using the student’s webcam, Respondus Monitor records the exam session. Suspicious behavior is flagged automatically. To use Respondus Monitor, follow the directions for using Respondus LockDown Browser and then select the Respondus Monitor option.
3. Examity is the preferred solution for all high-stakes tests. Remember that students pay an extra fee based on the level of proctoring that you, the faculty member, choose. This may cause hardships for students who may be effected significantly through loss of work or dealing with healthcare issues because of COVID-19. You should always share the cost of Examity which ranges from $10 – $17 per hour with your students so that they are never surprised by being asked to provide a credit or debit card for a test proctoring. Respondus Monitor is free to use for students.
As we move forward in responding to this difficult and challenging time, please remember that COLRS staff will do everything we can to assist you in the important and very difficult work that you are all undertaking to finish this semester.
Our friends at the Brookens Library, share the following message with UIS faculty.
In these unprecedented times and in an ever-evolving situation, faculty and staff of Brookens Library are available to provide remote services for you and your students. Library Faculty are available to assist you in finding materials that can be accessed online at no cost to your students.
In response to COVID-19, the larger educational community has been active in curating virtual resources for educators needing to quickly convert on-ground courses to alternative formats. As COLRS discovers resources that may be useful, we will share them here in this blog post.
Respondus Monitor is a new tool available to faculty at UIS who want to enhance the integrity of low-stakes exams in online classes. While Examity remains the recommended option for high-stakes exams like midterms and final exams because of its ability to provide live, real-time proctoring, Respondus Monitor is a good option for faculty members who want to improve the integrity of low-stakes exams like weekly quizzes.
It uses a student’s webcam to record the testing environment. Suspicious testing behavior is automatically flagged by the software, and instructors are alerted to preview the alert flags. Respondus Monitor is free for faculty and students to use and it is integrated with Blackboard. Respondus LockDown Browser must be used to use Respondus Monitor. To use Respondus Monitor, follow the directions for using Respondus LockDown browser. After selecting Respondus LockDown browser, also select the Respondus Monitor option.
To learn more about how to protect the integrity of low-stakes online exams, please visit Respondus Monitor’s Instructor Resources website.
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.
“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.”
Canvas is designed to be accessible. Learn more about Canvas and accessibility, including for screen reader users.
Canvas officially supports the following screen reader and browser combinations:
Canvas makes extensive use of ARIA landmark regions. Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA) defines ways to make web content and web applications more accessible to people with disabilities. Therefore, the best way to get around in Canvas is to navigate via regions. Within regions, Canvas uses HTML headings, so navigating between headings can be helpful.
When using a screen reader, the Canvas page navigation menu is as follows:
If you are a JAWS user and need additional assistance, please contact the UIS Office of Disability Services.
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.
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.
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:
The report can be downloaded at: http://www.openuniversity.edu/sites/www.openuniversity.edu/files/The_Open_University_Innovating_Pedagogy_2014_0.pdf
Download the UIS Examity Quick Guide for Faculty.
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.
On the Tool Available page, you will need to put a checkmark in the box for ExamityUISSSO.
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.
This will add a link to the Examity dashboard inside your course.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The first part of the box asks you to fill in several items:
The second part of the box establishes the rules for the exam environment. You can add special instructions here.
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.
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.
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).
If the exam has been approved by the auditor, you will see at least two alert flags.
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.
Support is available 24 hours a day.
Call: 1-(855)-392-6489 or 1-(855)-EXAMITY
Live Chat: Click the tab on the bottom of your screen
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.
Click to login to Examity.
This will take you to your Examity dashboard.
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.
Scheduling Your Exam: When you are ready to schedule an exam, click “Schedule Exam” on your dashboard or on the top navigation bar.
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.
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.
Click to login to Examity.
This will take you to your Examity dashboard.
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.
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.
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:
To make the course available again:
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:
Sample Announcement – 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/courseevals/login.aspx. These evaluations are available only through Saturday, May 4.Faculty members do not see the results of course evaluations until after final grades are submitted for the term. Thanks for taking the time to fill them out!
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:
Your class’s typical attendance rate should be considered when deciding whether the in-class or online evaluation will be more effective.
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.
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.
Respondus LockDown Browser is a customized browser that increases the security and integrity of online testing in Canvas. Learn more about Respondus LockDown Browser.
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).
To deploy a test:
To create a test:
To view and grade Turnitin Assignments:
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.
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
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
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.
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:
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.
We spend a lot of time developing materials and courses in Blackboard. ITS performs a daily backup for “gold” and current semester courses, but it is a good idea to backup a course for yourself after major updates to content or grades. You can use the Export or Archive tool to create a backup that can be restored by COLRS should the need arise.
When exporting a course package you select the items from the course that you want to include. Archiving includes all of the user material and data submitted in that course. Each process generates a .zip file that can be imported into Blackboard to restore content. Contact COLRS to have your content restored.
To find the WebApp Server within Blackboard:
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:
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
A Gold Course is special type of 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?
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.
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
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 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
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.
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.
The Turnitin database includes:
Turnitin provides the ability for faculty to:
Ideas for Using Turnitin
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.
A 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:
|Student Involvement and Individuation||Effective feedback is a mutual process involving both student and instructor.
|Being Positively Constructive||Effective feedback provides constructive guidance that builds confidence.
|Gentle Guidance||Effective feedback guides through explicit expectations and ongoing coaching.
|Timeliness||Timelines for effective feedback are mutually established and met.
|Future Orientation||Effective feedback is applicable to future situations.
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?