ETOM15

GVSU hosts statewide ETOM Fall Conference on Online/Hybrid Teaching and Learning

ETOM Conference

On Friday November 6, over 80 faculty and staff from across the state converged at Grand Valley State University to participate in the ETOM (Educational Technology Organization of Michigan) Fall Conference.

The conference, coordinated by GVSU’s eLearning and Emerging Technologies group along with the ETOM Board, featured a keynote by Kari Frisch from Central Lakes College in Minnesota who talked about student retention in online learning.

The event also featured 4 breakout sessions with 14 presenters on the topics of Open Educational Resources, custom instructional video including the GVSU Lightboard, “essential questions”, student outcomes in face to face/flipped/online courses, student motivation in learning, “specifications grading”, accessibility, learner engagement, audience response systems, and creating engaging content with Camtasia.

Sharing experience from the eLearning team included: Glenna Decker and Matt Roberts in IDeL and Justin Melick. GVSU faculty members Julia VanderMolen, Star Swift, Mary Jo Smith, and Szymon Machajewski also presented.

The following sessions featured faculty and staff from GVSU:

Create Video Learning Modules for a Chemistry Lab Course – KC Room 1104

Mary Jo Smith and Justin Melick, Grand Valley State University

Showcase Lab Orientation and Safety Learning Modules that incorporated Videos and Quizzes to teach lab safety for chemistry lab courses. The modules were developed to address an anticipated delay in the availability of newly renovated labs, and have been a substitute for lab the first week of lab for the semester. We plan to outline the process used to develop the series of seven modules that are being used in two courses for 1300 students via Blackboard. This set of learning modules is for mastery learning, and students are attaining 100% on the assessment at the end of the series. Additionally, time permitting we would outline the steps to develop a self-paced learning module that teaches students significant figures for chemistry calculations. This module is also being used by 1300 students via Blackboard.

Increasing Instructor Presence through the use of a Lightboard – KC Room 1104

Justin Melick and Star Swift, Grand Valley State University

Instructor presence is one aspect of online instruction that has been shown to have a positive impact on student satisfaction rates in online courses (Cowan and Hodges, 2012). This presentation will describe the ways an instructor’s virtual presence was provided to students in a hybrid and an online law class.  The technology used to provide the instructor’s virtual presence in these two classes is called a lightboard. The lightboard is a device that allows instructors to write their content on glass and virtually speak to their students face to face through the glass. The professor is recorded while using the lightboard and the video is subsequently provided to the students. This allows faculty to create engaging visuals that will help drive home instruction. In this presentation you will learn how the lightboard was created and then used to increase instructor presence in various online courses. Additionally, we will share data gathered from students that suggests learners prefer videos created with the lightboard over other types of instructional media.

Justin Melick, presenting about the GVSU Lightboard at the ETOM Conference.

Grading Nirvana: Toward a Better System and How to Implement It (Kind Of) – KC Rm 2266

Matthew Roberts, GVSU

Linda Nilson’s 2014 book introduced the world to “specifications grading”, an approach to grading designed to address the problems that faculty and students have with the way learning is assessed in the vast majority of courses. The presenter will explain Nilson’s list of the fifteen features of an ideal grading system and how the specifications grading approach comes much closer to the ideal than more traditional approaches. The balance of the presentation will then focus on how the system has been implemented in an online American government course and how the grading features of the campus LMS (Blackboard) can be used to facilitate specifications grading–albeit in a limited and sometimes frustrating way.

Matt Roberts, Instructional Designer, IDeL presenting on “Specifications Grading” at the ETOM Fall Conference.

Applying Principles of Andragogy in Online Teaching – KC Rm 2270

Glenna Decker, Grand Valley State University

The adult (nontraditional) learner population growth in higher education extends significantly to online and hybrid courses (NCES, 2014).  Keeping these learners engaged and motivated will take intentional planning and community building.  Online discussion is a key factor in online teaching and students report that it must be meaningful.  This presentation will share some insights gleaned from students assigned online discussion and will draw from the literature on adult learning theory to discuss practical suggestions for online teaching.

Glenna Decker, Instructional Designer, IDeL presenting on the topic of online discussions at the ETOM Fall Conference.


Thank you to the Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center for supporting a limited number of grants to cover the $75 registration fee for the conference.

WHAT: ETOM Fall Conference
WHEN: Friday, November 6 – 8:30am to 3:45pm
WHERE: Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons and Kirkhof Center
REGISTRATION: $75 (A limited number of grants are available through the Faculty Teaching and Learning Center.)

More information about the conference, including the breakout session topics can be found on the conference website.

Additional questions, please contact Eric Kunnen, Associate Director of eLearning and Emerging Technologies: kunnene@gvsu.edu

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