Conference on Teaching and Learning

Technology Enhanced Learning

Monday, May 8, 2017

 Room: 211      

Time Presentation
10:00 - 10:20 AM

Strategies and technologies that support active learning in an online course

By Melody Tucker

10:20 - 10:40 AM

Commenting on Student Writing: Using Google Docs to Enhance Revision in the Composing Process

By Allison Morrow

 10:40 - 11:00 AM

Smartphones in the Chemistry Lab: Enhancing Student Engagement and Learning Through Digital Lab Reports

By Carolyn Simmons

11:15 - 11:35 AM

Students' Interactions with Digital Textbooks vs. Paper Textbooks

By Lori Aultman

11:35 - 11:55 AM

OER: A Success Story

By Amy Pardo

11:55 - 12:15 PM

Moving Toward a Paperless Classroom: Digital Tools for the Web-Enhanced Classroom

By Lauren Brannan

01:45 - 02:05 PM

Teaching Finite Mathematics Online - A Course Coordinator's Perspective

By Jacob Dasinger

02:05 - 02:25 PM

Using technology to support student learning and retention of majors

By Sally Zengaro

02:25 - 02:45 PM  Deep Learning Cognitive Aid

By Paul Stephen Prueitt

03:00 - 03:20 PM

Screencast-O-Matic: A Team-Based Approach to Online Learning

By Chondra Butler

03:20 - 03:40 PM

Guest Speakers in the Online Classroom: WebEx and the ILC Recording Studio

By Eric Moody

03:40 - 04:00 PM

Web-Ex Office Hours: Increasing Engagement with Graduate Nursing Students in an Online Course

By Chrystal Lewis



Back to Agenda


Strategies and technologies that support active learning in an online course

Melody Tucker, University of South Alabama;

Stephanie Hulon, Baldwin County Public School System

Strategies and technologies that support active learning in an online course This conference presentation will highlight strategies and technologies instructors can incorporate in an online course to increase active learning by students. Active learning provides students with opportunities to engage in the learning process in a way that supports critical thinking and problem-solving skills. In this type of learning, students are actively engaged with the information and applying their understanding of the content in meaningful ways. This active role in learning has been shown to improve comprehension of the content and develop a deeper level of meaningful learning (McGlynn, 2005). Strategies for incorporating active learning into online courses can be done in a variety of ways. Some examples include synchronous online meetings through Skype or Google Hangouts, cooperative learning groups, peer review assignments, visual listing using tools such as G Suite for Education, problem based learning assignments with tools such as Google Docs , and student created videos using tools such as Swivl and Torsh. Active learning techniques can range from simple to complex. They can start with a simple writing assignment that includes peer review or they can be more complex with an experiential learning experience. The continuum of active learning activities can be done individually or collaboratively. However, the goal is the same that the students dive deeper into applying critical thinking and problem solving skills. McGlynn, A. P. (2005). Teaching millennials, our newest cultural cohort. Educational Digest, 12-16.  


Commenting on Student Writing: Using Google Docs to Enhance Revision in the Composing Process

Allison Morrow, University of South Alabama

The field of writing studies looks to educate students on the importance of the composing process versus the final product (Wardle and Downs). In particular, one way that students can learn the importance of drafting, revision, and editing is through the portfolio process, where students revise major assignments throughout the semester and display final copies of their work on a website of their creation. One way I’ve personally enhanced the portfolio process in my English composition course is through the use of Google Docs, a word processing platform that allows users to create a live document that can be easily edited and automatically saved. This particular software enables students to share their live documents, allowing instructors to provide feedback to the document through direct editing and commenting. Upon receipt of their feedback, students tend to revise.their documents immediately, and the final documents found in students’ portfolios tend to have more thoughtful revisions. This is due to the fact that Google Docs allows instructors to follow the best practices of commenting on student writing by demonstrating the importance of revising holistically rather than selectively (Sommers). Because of this, students spend revision time focusing more on big picture changes rather than just spending time fixing grammatical errors. So far, the use of this technology has allowed my feedback process to enhance active learning by compelling students to respond to instructor feedback. This active response to instructor feedback enables students to transfer the skills they’ve learned from one writing assignment to another.  


Smartphones in the Chemistry Lab: Enhancing Student Engagement and Learning Through Digital Lab Reports

Carolyn Simmons, Spring Hill College

April Sanders, Spring Hill College

Students in Honors General Chemistry lab at Spring Hill College prepared digital lab reports (DLRs) alongside traditional written reports throughout the semester. The basic components of the report were not changed - abstract, experimental, data/observations, results, discussion - but the means by which the students presented these components changed substantially. Students created videos for their DLRs and posted them in a private Google drive folder in order to collaborate and provide peer feedback. This transformation from traditional to digital necessitated a greater degree of planning by the students in order to capture on video or photograph the aspects of the experiments required for the report. Preliminary project results will be presented, including examples of the students' peer reviews.  


Students' Interactions with Digital Textbooks vs. Paper Textbooks

Lori Aultman, Spring Hill College

In our digital age, more and more college students are seeking e-textbooks for their courses to save money.  In personal communication with one “mega-publisher,” their stance was that P12 institutions have already moved en masse to digital alternatives, and publishing companies need to produce products for college students that mirror what they have used in previous schooling experiences.  The purpose of this study was to examine students’ perceptions of e-texts vs. paper copies.  I specifically explored students’ preferences, their interactions with both types of textbooks, and their self-regulatory practices as they read and studied.  The results indicate that the majority of college students still prefer paper copies of texts to their digital counterparts for a variety of reasons, including digital glitches, eye fatigue, and the active learning processes these students use to both read and study.


OER: A Success Story

Amy Pardo, Mississippi University for Women

This session will review the pedagogical methodology supporting the use of Open Education Resources (OER) based on a comparative analysis of composition courses.  This research-based presentation will thus emphasize successful implementation of knowledge with active-learning focused environments for students that is applicable throughout the curriculum.   The academic search for reliable OER content will be reviewed along with current copyright issues.  Designing and setting up course content within an active student learning environment is a crucial component for the successful OER-based course.  Likewise, focusing student engagement within a course that expects a certain level of technological literacy must also be anticipated.  Thus, student engagement through the process of knowledge gain within the course is vital, and key buy-in strategies will be reviewed.


Moving Toward a Paperless Classroom: Digital Tools for the Web-Enhanced Classroom

Lauren Brannan, University of South Alabama

Hannah Szatkowski, University of South Alabama

Finding ways to reduce the use of paper is always beneficial to our environment, but is difficult to do in the classroom without the right tools.  This presentation will describe examples of how Google Classroom tools and Microsoft Office Tools can be used in conjunction with the university’s course management system to help teachers reduce the number of paper copies. Examples of the use of each tool will be provided. 


Teaching Finite Mathematics Online - A Course Coordinator's Perspective

Jacob Dasinger, University of South Alabama

MA 110 Finite Mathematics is one of the largest enrollment mathematics courses offered at the University of South Alabama every semester.  In an effort to reach more students and lower overall classroom size, this course has been available as fully online since Summer 2014 semester.  In this presentation, the course coordinator will discuss how the course was moved to an online setting using MyLabsPlus, a Pearson learning management system.  Data will also be presented comparing homework, quiz and test scores between online and traditional settings.  Strategies that seemed successful/unsuccessful for student achievement as well as the future direction of the course will also discussed. 


Using technology to support student learning and retention of majors

Sally Zengaro, Delta State University

Temika Simmons, Delta State University

The goal of this presentation is to discuss the implementation of adaptive learning technology at a small regional university in the South. Helping college students succeed is an important goal of many psychology departments as they look to support their students’ learning. Recent advancements in technological resources have led to greater use of adaptive technology in electronic textbooks, quizzes, and performance reports to inform instruction. Therefore, in efforts to increase student learning, student performance in a high DFW course, and student retention in the psychology major, two professors integrated McGraw-Hill’s Connect into three courses and four sections. The Connect system adapts the electronic textbook to specific areas of study, based on the goals and selections of the instructors. Then as students read, the textbook becomes an interactive, adaptive experience, quizzing students as they read for comprehension as well as their confidence in their responses. If students show they have mastered the content, they are encouraged to move on. If they have not mastered areas designated by the instructor, then the textbook prompts them to read and review the text again. Additional resources are also available to the student and instructor. McGraw-Hill makes the claim that students receive higher grades through using Connect and they study “smarter not harder.” This presentation will be an interactive session that presents the results of research into using Connect as well as the pros and cons surrounding the implementation of the technology with their classes.


Screencast-O-Matic: A Team-Based Approach to Online Learning

Chondra Butler, University of South Alabama

Tyler Sturdivant, University of South Alabama

Student engagement and collaborative learning are important components of graduate education, but both can be very challenging to accomplish in an online course environment. In addition, graduate faculty are charged with the task of ensuring that students learn critical thinking skills, are able to work well in groups, and can assess and evaluate the outcomes of their work. Screencast-O-Matic (SOM), a free screen recording application, is currently utilized in a graduate clinical nurse specialist (CNS) program to address these potential issues. This application allows for team-building and collaborative exercises for both faculty and students alike. In the CNS curricula, SOM is used for group assignments in which the students are responsible for deciding the format and specific content to be covered in their presentations. Additionally, the SOM presentations are then used as teaching tools for students to educate fellow classmates on their specific topic. Students develop advanced communication techniques, adaptability to and tolerance of multiple personalities, and professional time-management and presentation experience through completion of the SOM assignment, all of which serve as preparation for a career in which working with others is essential. With the incorporation of technological applications and tools in online learning, such as SOM, enhancement of faculty and student engagement, collaboration, and team-building essentials is realized. This presentation will address the use of SOM from both a faculty stance as well as the student perception of the technology.


Guest Speakers in the Online Classroom: WebEx and the ILC Recording Studio

Eric Moody, University of South Alabama

David Walker, University of South Alabama

Online courses present numerous and unique challenges to professors who want to provide their students with the same benefits offered to students in face-to-face classroom settings, such as “real-time” scholarly interactions and intellectual dialog.  Another issue facing professors in an online course is how to create “live” dialog exchanges between students and guest speakers.  WebEx is a free, interactive software that works very well in solving these problems. For IST 420, Community Development and Leadership, the use of WebEx’s “live” chat function and the ILC (Innovation in Learning Center) recording studio at the University of South Alabama creates a unique solution that allows students to interact, in “real-time,” with local community leaders to enhance the concepts and ideas presented in the course. The ILC audio/visual recording studio offers the perfect setting for interviewing local community leaders, while WebEx has ability to record and save these sessions for playback, offering those students who may have missed the “live” session the flexibility to later view them at their convenience.  


Web-Ex Office Hours: Increasing Engagement with Graduate Nursing Students in an Online Course

Chrystal Lewis, University of South Alabama

A struggle online students often cite is lack of engagement with faculty.  For students on campus, faculty are required to hold office hours for students to come by for clarification of topics as well as simply engage with their faculty.  Online course faculty perceive virtual office hours or small group reviews to be burdensome to hold because of the asynchronous nature of online learning.   Despite the availability of faculty engagement via a course Q & A discussion board, email, and phone, students in an online graduate nursing course did not seek the opportunities for clarification of assignments prior to the due date.   After 45% of students enrolled in the graduate online course did not earn a passing grade on the first assignment, additional strategies to engage with students to answer questions were examined. While other disciplines have successfully used virtual office hours or small  group drop in review sessions for over a decade, nursing as a discipline does not embrace this strategy as often as other disciplines. The strategy selected was the use of virtual office hours via the Web-Ex platform to engage with students to ensure understanding and clarification of assignments mid-semester.  A doodle poll was used to coordinate office hour times.  Office hours were held after the first assignment and one week before each of the major assignment due dates.  Students verbalized appreciation for the opportunity to engage in the Web-Ex office hours for clarification and they find it easier to ask their questions in this platform."


Deep Learning Cognitive Aid

Paul Stephen Prueitt, University of South Alabama

The ultimate goal of deep learning architecture is to give every individual a capacity to build, maintain, grow and share representations of location and pathways within a topic map about college curriculums.   Curriculum maps are similar in nature to the ALEX adaptive online tutoring system. When current state of the art knowledge representation is combined with intelligence algorithms, we produce deep learning cognitive aids.  Deep learning had its early beginnings in the ‘70s and ’80s in the fields of cognitive neuroscience and neuropsychology.  At this time behavioral neuroscience began to find useful applications from active research in biologically feasible artificial neural networks.  However, propagation of finding has been noticeably difficult.  Over the ensuing decades, technology has grown to the point where a keyword search on the term “deep learning” yields results almost exclusively centered around machine learning, with very few citations based on human learning.  Deep learning also appears in education literatures, but is not defined there.  In our presentation to this conference, a theory about human deep learning is defined in notation, algorithms and perceptions about a biological basis for understanding learning. A proposed architecture combines natural and artificial systems in a synergistic way, a la Robert Rosen (1934-1998) and Tim Berners Lee.  Technologies already exist to varying degrees.  We aim to integrate various components into a digital system for knowledge capture, representation and transfer.