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Educational Technology

Blackboard & VLE Awards 2017

Now into its fifth year, the 2017 Blackboard & VLE Awards competition has seen an increasing number of courses supported by exemplary use and design of their virtual learning environment.  This year’s awards event featured a mix of familiar and new faces: some staff recognised for the consistently high quality of support they provide for students online each year, and others representing modules where new developments in the VLE have helped transform their course delivery. Continue reading →

Blackboard & Virtual Learning Environment Awards 2017

Students have contributed a record number of nominations for this year’s Blackboard & VLE Awards, sharing valuable feedback about what is most useful in a course site.  It is evident that many courses offer students a fantastic online learning experience alongside the face-to-face teaching, and the challenge of narrowing these down to a final shortlist is an encouraging one to have! After much deliberation, a shortlist has been chosen and can be viewed here. Continue reading →

e-coffee @ SGH

In this month’s e-coffee@SGH session, Daryl Peel from the Digital Learning team demonstrated two tools that can help users familiarise themselves with a physical space, or even use a physical space to help familiarise users with a topic.   ActionBound offers a means of creating interactive scavenger hunts, using GPS to recognise a location, and guiding users through a series of activities as they move around the space. Continue reading →

e-coffee @ SGH

February’s e-coffee session was led by Sarah Fielding, exploring possible uses of Thinglink, a tool for making interactive diagrams and videos. Signing up for a basic account gives you access to upload 2D images and label these with a series of hotspots.  Each hotspot can link to an image or weblink as well as a text description. Going a step further, Sarah showed some examples of 360° images, with different pictures at a single location linked and labelled to provide a virtual tour. Continue reading →

e-coffee @ SGH

December’s e-coffee@SGH explored some of the 12 apps of Christmas recommended by Dublin Institute of Technology and Regent’s University London. Both discuss how the apps suggested can be used in education, with case studies and examples. Sway is increasingly being used to create interactive presentations that students can work through (or create) independently.  As part of Office 365, it is possible to log in with university details. Continue reading →

Leading Lines Season 1

The tenth episode of our educational technology podcast, Leading Lines, was released today. It features an interview by my colleague Cliff Anderson, Associate University Librarian for Research and Learning, with my other colleague Steve Baskauf, Senior Lecturer in Biological Sciences. Continue reading →

Learn to play, play to learn

Gamification is a word that has been thrown around with a lot of interest but very little action. Small pockets of innovators have produce astonishing pieces of work in various faculties across the university. As the new Learning Designer here at ILIaD I have a vision to bring together those innovators in Gamification and spread the word on what is capable with this learning design. (, 2016) It's estimated that 18. Continue reading →

e-coffee @ SGH

e-coffee@SGH builds on the iPAD coffee clubs that previously took place at SGH, exploring the use of mobile devices, but also sharing wider experiences and ideas around the use of technology. This month we looked at tools for creating quizzes and simple games to aid learning and encourage engagement.  Kahoot is a free tool that allows users to create quizzes that are led from the front of the class, with students playing along on their phones, tablets or laptops. Continue reading →

Leading Lines: A New Podcast on Educational Technology in Higher Education

I’m very happy to announce the launch of Leading Lines, a podcast on educational technology produced here at Vanderbilt University. Our first episode features an interview with George Siemens, executive director of the Learning Innovation and Networked Knowledge (LINK) Research Lab at the University of Texas at Arlington, who provides a “big picture” look at edtech, as well some very practical thoughts on social knowledge production and learning analytics. Continue reading →

Teaching with Digital Timelines

Cross-posted from the Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching blog. This year the Center for Teaching hosted a few educational technology working groups for faculty, staff, and students interested in exploring ways particular technologies might meet their instructional goals. One of the groups investigated the use of digital timeline tools, like Tiki-Toki and TimelineJS, that facilitate the creation of online, multimedia, interactive, and collaborative timelines. Continue reading →