edTech Update

*NEW* EdTech Tools Launch at DC

In collaboration with IT, DC CTL is excited to announce the acquisition of Padlet and Kahoot for DC faculty! Padlet and Kahoot are EdTech tools used to engage active learning strategies for demonstrating knowledge and understanding in the classroom and increase student engagement.

PADLET

Padlet is a virtual wall, or online bulletin board, that allows multiple users to collaborate, express their thoughts and share ideas on a common topic or theme at the same time. Faculty and students can post text, hyperlinks, audio or video content. It is a great way to engage with students and promote constructive engagement with each other in an activity simultaneously. Padlet has many uses in education, such as mind mapping, brainstorming on a topic, statement or idea, generating a question bank, creating an alternative to a discussion group, etc.

KAHOOT

Kahoot allows faculty to create their own interactive learning games, such as quizzes, and play them asynchronously or synchronously with their students. Example question types include quiz, poll, open answer, word cloud, and type answer. As an assessment strategy, Kahoot is an excellent tool for diagnostic and formative assessments, allowing faculty to check-in on students’ knowledge quickly and easily.  As a learning strategy, it is a great way to apply the science of learning principle, retrieval practice, allowing students to recall information learned in a previous class and strengthen their knowledge of the content.

We are expecting Padlet and Kahoot to be available when faculty return in August. When the implementation is complete, an announcement will be sent to faculty with instructions on creating a DC account, how to log in, resources, and professional development sessions. Students do not need accounts for either tool. When working on course development, consider integrating Padlet and Kahoot into your teaching practices!

CTL would like to acknowledge the early faculty adopters who participated in the Kahoot eCampusOntario pilot project, your eagerness, participation, and feedback led DC to purchasing these licenses.

Creating Accessible Courses  /  Accessibility Hub

As you’re working on updating your courses, remember to ensure your course content and learning activities are accessible. To support you, Niagara College has launched a new digital Accessibility Hub, with over 55 articles, checklists, videos, and resources with straightforward recommendations for those seeking to build accessibility-first practices into your courses. Resources that may be of interest to you are document accessibility and accessible academic delivery. Reminder, DC has detailed resources on captioning your videos.

Using Intelligent Agents to Automate

As you prepare for the upcoming school year, consider using Intelligent Agents in DC Connect to check-in with your students, increase student engagement, all while reducing your workload? Check out this video to learn about Intelligent Agents, and this resource to implement them in your courses. Recently, the Intelligent Agents tool, Create Agent page, has received a handful of cosmetic and feature updates that facilitate additional scheduling options and frequency options to allow for improved flexibility. Of particular note is the addition of One-Time Run and Hourly frequency options, and the addition of a Scheduled Time for the Daily, Weekly, Monthly, and Annually frequencies.

Create a DC Connect Banner Using PowerPoint

As you are working on your courses in DC Connect, sometimes the template images may not suit your needs. When this happens consider creating a custom banner using this easy hack with PowerPoint – no Photoshop skills necessary! Download this PowerPoint file and watch this short video to learn how you can easily crop an image in PowerPoint for use within DC Connect. The banner size will work on content pages and module descriptions.

If you need graphics or images, here are a couple resources we recommend:

Remember to stick with images or graphics that are available for use under a Creative Commons license or you have the permissions to use for your courses, including attribution where required.