EDUCAUSE

EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative “2018 Key Issues” meet the Initiatives in eLearning at GVSU

The EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) has recently revealed the “Key Issues for 2018” [Infographic]. ELI has been conducting a survey since 2011 to discover and identify common trends and KEY ISSUES in highered.

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In this post, the ELI KEY issues are presented, along with the role of eLearning and Emerging Technologies as it relates to supporting and responding to each issue.

  1. Academic Transformation and Faculty Development

    The eLearning team at GVSU is focused on both of these as we strive to:

    “Support faculty pursuing innovation in teaching and learning…”

    Instructional technology and new pedagogies are the eLearning team’s focus as we provide creative professional development and a enterprise campus technology resources in an effort to create the next generation of teaching and learning. In fact, eLearning aligns with the GVSU 2021 Strategic Plan in the following areas that support academic transformation and innovative faculty development:

    Institutional outcome D: Grand Valley supports innovative teaching, learning, integrative scholarly and creative activity, and the use of new technologies.

    Objective 1.D.2: At least 93% of faculty members regularly use electronic course management tools, such as Blackboard, in their teaching. Baseline: 89% of faculty indicated either daily or weekly use of Blackboard in their teaching according to a GVSU faculty survey conducted winter 2016.

    Objective 3.D.2: At least 30% of undergraduate courses are offered in innovative approaches and formats, such as hybrid, online and competency-oriented.

    Objective 3.D.3: At least 30% of graduate courses are offered in innovative approaches and such as hybrid, online and competency-oriented.

    Objective 4.D.1: Effective technologies are integrated into every function and structure across the institution.

    For many institutions, training sessions and seminars are often provided to faculty as part of a professional development program. To successfully engage faculty at GVSU, the eLearning team offers a wide array of sessions that focus on best practices in the application of technologies to solve instructional problems. Throughout the 2017 academic year, over 80 training seminars covering a large scope of instructional technology topics were offered to faculty. These seminars are centered on the effective pedagogical integration of technology in teaching.

  2. Accessibility and Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

    Accessibility and UDL continue to be important key issues and the eLearning team supports these initiatives through professional development and shared resources along with collaborative services with the Disability Support Resources department.

    eLearning Web Resource – Universal Design for Learning
    eLearning Web Resource – Accessibility Tips for Online Course Content

  3. Online/Blended Learning and Instructional Design

    Distance education continues to grow at GVSU with a +25% increase in enrollment in online/hybrid classes since 2017.  With nearly 5,000 student enrollments in the Winter 2018 semester, just over 17% of all students are taking at least 1 online or hybrid course.  To support distance education initiatives, eLearning has trained over 250 faculty to teach online/hybrid classes in just 1 year through the Foundations of Online and Hybrid Course Development and Delivery course.

    As one of the most desired professional development opportunities, the “Foundations of Online and Hybrid Course Development and Delivery” workshop  is a required training for all faculty that teach an online or a hybrid class at GVSU. As part of this professional development, Blackboard competencies are also required. Faculty must demonstrate basic competency in using the essentials of Blackboard, whereas the Foundations training focuses on best practices in online/hybrid pedagogies.

    All in all, the required Foundations training has led faculty to develop and teach high quality courses at the university. This professional development experience has been created and is delivered entirely through Blackboard, showcasing and modeling best practices, as well as a variety of technology tools that are available to faculty to use in their own teaching. Applications that integrate with Blackboard, include technologies such as: Ensemble, Echo360, Panopto, TechSmith Relay, and a variety of other web services (Padlet, Flipgrid, Vocaroo, etc.).  

    Finally, in order to successfully complete the Foundations training, faculty must create a week of instruction using Blackboard. The week of instruction is peer reviewed using a quality rubric that is based on the Blackboard Exemplary Course Program and Quality Matters.

  4. Privacy and Security

    The key issue in privacy and security is in maintaining the integrity of our enterprise systems while ensuring student privacy. This is also essential when 3rd party technologies are used as part of a course. The eLearning team has created a few tips for instructors who are using external web services and social media with their students and in their courses.

    eLearning Web Resource – Social Media and Third Party Tools in Teaching

  5. Digital and Information Literacies 

    As a liberal arts educational institution, GVSU’s mission is as follows: “Grand Valley State University educates students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies. The university contributes to the enrichment of society through excellent teaching, active scholarship, and public service.”

    Part of this work is the role of critical thinking as it relates to the use of everything digital. The eLearning team supports the equipping of students and the campus community in supporting a variety of enterprise applications as well as the advancement of digital literacies through support and infrastructure. Inclusive education and the support for digital media is most notable in the work of the eLearning Digital Studio. The studio maintains a project list that provides great breadth and depth of leveraging to technology that contributes to dialogue around 21st century literacy skills for students. Further, the eLearning team is hoping to host “design thinking-based”conversations around establishing more support for student-based digital media creation at GVSU.

  6. Open Education

    GVSU has been involved in the open education resources (OER) movement for many years, and most recently has seen a growth in the adoption and use of #OER in teaching and learning. For example, there have been several adoptions of OpenStax textbooks in Chemistry and Mathematics and a new interdisciplinary team lead by the university’s library is helping to coordinate resources and raise awareness.

    In fact, GVSU has been participating with the K-12 community through the #GOOPEN initiative as part of the US Department of Education’s goal to encourage states, school districts and educators to use openly licensed educational materials to transform teaching and learning. GVSU joined the #GOOPEN initiative in January last year.

    Further, there has been activity across the state for several years, and one recent example is the #MIOERSummit, which brought together faculty across the state with the goal of improving student success through the use and adoption of OER.

    eLearning Resource – Open Educational Resources (OER)

  7. Integrated Planning and Advising

    GVSU IT supports a variety of student information system initiatives across the university. The eLearning team supports retention and student success through the use of Blackboard through automation to make faculty advisors more effective and efficient in communicating with students through the Blackboard Organization Advisor sites.

  8. Learning Analytics

    The opportunities are abound with big data and small data. BIG data, meaning the large scale and mass amounts of data that can inform strategic decisions. Also, SMALL data in the use of course level information about students and their levels of engagement in their courses. Solutions that include early alert, intervention, and the closing of the loop between students > faculty > advisors are becoming powerful tools in the support of student retention.

    Most notable here is “Clicks, Grades, Engagement, and Student Success” whereby, Blackboard has provided research in how successful students are using LMS tools.

    “The most successful students are those who access MyGrades most frequently; students doing poorly do not access their grades. Students who never access their grades are more likely to fail than students who access them at least once.”

    This impacts our campus with opportunities through applications such as Blackboard Predict which provides capabilities to inform campus advisors with students at-risk, and also at the individual instructor level through tools like the Blackboard Retention Center.

  9. Learning Space Design

    As the campus continues to create classroom and in-between spaces for students to informally gather and learn, active learning becomes more important and so too the purposeful design of facilities.

    Active learning classrooms provide a unique faculty and student experience as the spaces include flexible and movable furniture and technology to support: 1) a student-centered design, 2) enhanced collaboration, 3) increased faculty/student engagement, and 4) improved interaction through dynamic group work and classroom communication.

    IT Resource – Technology Enhanced and Active Learning Classrooms

  10. Emerging Technologies – Technology Showcase

    As part of the eLearning team’s work, the latest emerging technologies are a focus of the Atomic Object Technology Showcase. The mission of the showcase is to provide faculty, staff, and students with an immersive and engaging environment to: interact, discover, learn, and share how innovative emerging technologies can enhance teaching and improve student learning at GVSU. With over 40 emerging technology exhibits that include virtual reality, augmented reality, and 3D printing, the showcase is an outstanding and very unique example of education, technology, and innovation.

    While being a spotlight for campus tours, visitors, and also a destination for a variety of classes at GVSU, the showcase also engages with partnerships across the campus. For example, in a unique partnership with the GVSU Art Gallery, the showcase provided an innovative virtual reality experience at the opening reception which was held on January 15, 2018. To celebrate the grand opening of “Ebb & Flow: Explorations in Painting” with art by artist Herbert Murrie, participants were able to create their own painting in a 3D virtual reality experience using Tilt Brush by Google.

    A GVSU campus wide beacon of emerging #edtech, the Technology Showcase has had over 53,000 visitors since 2015, hosting a variety of colleges and university visitors, including most notably the President of the country of Palau who brought with him the United States Secret Service!

    eLearning Resource – Technology Showcase as Engaging Space with Emerging Technologies

  11. Competency-based Education/New Methods of Assessment

    New Methods of Assessment – Open Badges
    eLearning facilitated the implementation of open badges for faculty professional development.  In fact, the first badge awarded at GVSU was eLearning’s “#EdTech Summer Teaching Institute” badge. Further, 7 badges are currently offered by eLearning, including 4 Blackboard badges, a digital media badge, an #EdTech Summer Teaching Institute badge, and a badge for the successful completion of Foundations of Online and Hybrid Course Development and Delivery.


What about you? What are some other key issues or trends that resonate and that bubble up in importance on our campuses?

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EDUCAUSE 2016 Highlights

cvnpwc8ukai_tueWith over 8,000 attendees, the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference is one of the premier events each year bringing together the best of technology, teaching, and learning.

This year, the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference was held in Anaheim, California at the convention center.  The event began with pre-conference sessions on Tuesday, October 25th, which was followed by 2 and 1/2 days of sessions.

The conference included nearly 300 exhibitors, keynotes by Susan Cain, best-selling author, speaker, and co-founder of Quiet Revolution and Sugatra Mitra, Professor of Educational Technology at Newcastle University in England, and a large variety of breakout sessions that covered the following program tracks:

  • Driving Innovation in Teaching and Learning
  • Enabling the Data-Driven Decision-Making Environment
  • Innovating in IT Infrastructure and Cloud-Based IT Environments
  • Leading and Partnering Strategically across the Academy
  • Producing, Distributing, and Using Digital-based Knowledge
  • Reducing and Managing Risk in a Digital World
  • Transforming the Student Experience

Consolidating the breakout session titles into a tag cloud highlighted the following keywords: “learning, student, education, technology, service”

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Here are several highlights from the conference:

“The most successful students are those who access MyGrades most frequently; students doing poorly do not access their grades. Students who never access their grades are more likely to fail than students who access them at least once.”

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About the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference:

The EDUCAUSE Annual Conference is the premier convening of IT professionals and technology providers across the diverse higher education landscape. The conference creates networking opportunities for colleagues to share ideas regarding strategies, leading change, effective processes, what’s working, and sometimes—more importantly—what isn’t.

EDUCAUSE 2016 represents the best thinking in higher education IT.

Showcase @GVSU makes @EDUCAUSELI @NMCorg Horizon Report Video Competition

showcaseNMCvideoAn Atomic Object Technology Showcase video (produced by the Digital Studio in eLearning and Emerging Technologies) made it to the ELI NMC Horizon Report Video Competition!

Located in room 012 of the Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons, the showcase at Grand Valley State University is on mission to accelerate the topic of emerging technologies and their use in teaching and learning. Be sure to visit the showcase to see and interact with the latest technologies including: 3D printing, augmented and virtual reality, wearable and gesture computing, and more!

Each year, the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative joins forces with the New Media Consortium to prepare a report that highlights the latest in trends in #EdTech.

The 2016 Higher Education Preview is now available and it highlights the following emerging technologies across 3 adoption trend time frames (view full report – PDF):

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ECAR Study of Students and Technology @ GVSU

EDUCAUSE has recently released the 2015 “ECAR Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology” that provides insight into students and their use of technology in education.  This research has been ongoing since 2004 with 970,000 students from 161 institutions participating in this year’s survey.

This was the first year for GVSU to participate in this research study. In fact, there were 50,274 respondents from 11 countries and 43 states that participated in the 2015 ECAR survey.

The following is a summary of the key study areas with the resulting key findings:

  • Technology Experiences – More than ever, students are using technology and are generally positive in reporting their experiences. Technology has had a moderate influence in the students’ active involvement in classes.
  • Technology Ownership and the Campus Environment – More students than ever own devices that are web enabled.
  • Mobile Devices and Student Learning – While mobile devices carry a high level of interest, the use of these in education is low.
  • Technology Resources and Tools – There is evidence that technologies are not integrated for their full potential in education.
  • Analytics and Data Privacy – The majority of students see the institutional use of data as important in tracking their academic progress.
  • New Models for Education – MOOCs and competency-based education haven’t yet impacted undergraduates while:

“The majority of students say they learn best with a blend of online and face-to-face work.”


Here are a few highlights from the report, along with GVSU’s results that include benchmarks.

FACULTY USE OF TECHNOLOGY

For comparison, at GVSU, the results included the following:


USE OF LMS and COLLABORATION TOOLS

The follow graphs highlight the use of the Blackboard (LMS) and Collaboration Tools (eg. Blackboard Collaborate, etc.).

When students were surveyed as part of the ECAR study, 94% indicated that Blackboard was used in at least one of their courses with 54% reporting that all of their classes used an LMS.

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UseBbWish

When faculty at GVSU were asked in the ECAR study about their use of the LMS, they reported the following:

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When faculty were asked how often they typically use Blackboard, they indicated the following:BbOftenUse

Over 81% of faculty surveyed in the ECAR study at GVSU indicated the Blackboard was a very useful tool to enhance their teaching.BbValue.jpg

Similarly, when faculty were asked if the LMS is a very useful tool to enhance student learning, more than 74% agreed.

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Also asked in the study, was the use of online collaboration tools in courses.  Here are the results from the study:

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MOBILE

In addition to the use of the LMS and online collaboration tools, the importance of mobile access to campus resources was highlighted in the report.  Most notable was the importance of checking grades, content, and accessing the LMS (eg. Blackboard).


EXPECTATIONS AND USE OF TECHNOLOGY

Importance of using technology and expectations for use by students was another highlight.  The top 4 included: search tools, LMS use (eg. Blackboard), online collaboration tools, and the use of laptops during class.


EXPERIENCE TAKING ONLINE COURSES

Finally, students were asked if they have taken a completely online class in the past year, and if they have ever taken and online course before.  The results are revealed in the charts below:

Related to these data above, GVSU currently offers a wide array of courses and degree programs in the online and hybrid format.  There are approximately 150 courses and just over 3,500 total student enrollments in distance education courses as of the Fall semester 2015.  In fact, this represents a 91% increase in enrollment since 2011 with 12% of students at GVSU taking at least 1 online/hybrid course.  In addition, over 500 faculty have been certified to teach online/hybrid courses through the Foundations course that is offered through IDeL and the FTLC. Finally, online and hybrid learning connects to GVSU’s 2021 Strategic Plan in objectives 3.D.2 and 3.D.3.


What are your thoughts about these results and the opportunities that are provided by leveraging technology in teaching and learning?

EDUCAUSE Top 10 IT Issues and eLearning @ GVSU

Each year, EDUCAUSE releases the “Top 10 IT Issues and Strategic Technologies” report that will be released in January 2016.

The top 10 IT issues of 2016 are:

Reviewing the issues list from EDUCAUSE, the following areas are key in our mission and vision in our eLearning and Emerging Technologies group at GVSU:

#2 – Optimizing Educational Technology

#3 – Student Success Technologies

#10 – E-Learning and Online Education

Specifically, our mission is squarely targeted in the aforementioned areas for supporting faculty and students in traditional instruction as well as advancing our work as a university in online and hybrid classes.

Our eLearning and Emerging Technologies Mission Statement:

“eLearning and Emerging Technologies is dedicated to supporting faculty, contributing to teaching excellence, and enhancing student success through: exemplary instructional design, effective application and integration of instructional technologies, interactive digital media development, administration and enhancement of the university’s enterprise course management system (Blackboard), and the deployment of new innovative emerging technologies.”

Additionally, we are aligning our work to the GVSU 2021 Strategic Plan in the following areas:

Strategic Priority Area 1: Actively engage learners at all levels.

Institutional outcome D: Grand Valley supports innovative teaching, learning, integrative scholarly and creative activity, and the use of new technologies.

Objective 1.D.2: At least 20% of faculty members use state-of-the-art instructional methods and technologies in their teaching. Baseline: Education Center for Analysis and Research preliminary data is being collected for 2014-15, available June 2015.

Strategic Priority Area 2: Further develop exceptional personnel.

Institutional outcome E: Grand Valley strategically allocates its fiscal, human, and other institutional resources.

Objective 2.E.1: At least 75% of faculty and 75% of staff participate in professional development to expand, enhance or extend their competencies and capabilities within the context of the responsibilities of their positions. Baseline for faculty will be determined via Digital Measures in summer 2015. Baseline for Fall 2014 for staff is 50-55%.

Strategic Priority 3: Ensure the alignment of institutional structures and functions.

Institutional outcome D: Grand Valley supports innovative teaching, learning, integrative scholarly and creative activity, and the use of new technologies.

Objective 3.D.2: At least 30% of undergraduate courses are offered in innovative approaches and formats, such as hybrid, online and competency-oriented. Baseline for undergraduate courses for Fall 2014 is 6%.

Objective 3.D.3: At least 30% of graduate courses are offered in innovative approaches and such as hybrid, online and competency-oriented. Baseline for graduate courses for Fall 2014 is 25%.

Strategic Priority 4: Enhance the institution’s image and reputation.

Institutional outcome D: Grand Valley supports innovative teaching, learning, integrative scholarly and creative activity, and the use of new technologies

Objective 4.D.1:Effective technologies are integrated into every function and structure across the institution. Baseline: In 2013, IT implementation was above the median on 24 of 49 indicators across 7 functional domains.

As we look into the future, we are excited by the potential and looking forward to supporting faculty in the delivery of the next generation of teaching and learning!

#EDU15 – Technology Showcase featured in EDUCAUSE Session

The Atomic Object Technology Showcase at Grand Valley State University was recently highlighted in a preconference seminar for the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference on October 27.  The session title was: Working with Emerging Technologies to Promote Engaging Learning. This session featured a panel of 12 presenters from 8 colleges and universities including: University of Oregon, Pennsylvania State University, Berry College, University of Miami, University of Central Florida, Glendale Community College, California State University, and Grand Valley State University.

Eric Kunnen, Associate Director of eLearning and Emerging Technologies, talked about GVSU’s radically student-centered Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons and the value it provides for students and faculty to bring about opportunities to experience emerging technology through the Technology Showcase!

Here are the slides from the session: