Online Learning

Reflections on Inclusion and Equity in Digitally Mediated Learning Spaces

by Heather Pleasants, Office of Institutional Effectiveness After returning from the Digital Pedagogy Lab Summer Institute (DPL)*, writing a post about “Assessing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Digital Classrooms” seemed to make sense. However, I encountered a few challenges right away: Challenge #1: Who wants to read a blog post that starts with “assessing?”  (…crickets) Challenge

8 Reasons Why Your LMS is Awesome for Teaching and Learning (Yes, Eight)

by Nathan Loewen, Department of Religious Studies This week, I learned about digital literacies.* My workshop leader was Jade Davis, the Manager of Digital Projects at Columbia University Library. Right at the beginning of the workshop, she stated why she loves the LMS. I have previously expressed skepticism about the LMS. Dr. Davis helped crystallize how

Gathering Real-World Video for Online Classes

by Meredith Cummings, Journalism and Creative Media When I started my Follow My Lede project in March of 2017, my goal was to drive 10,000 miles over six months (it took me 10) and visit dozens of newsrooms while chronicling American journalism. I was interested in holding a mirror up to the media and the

Creating Accessible Online Courses

by Jessica Porter, Office of Educational Technology (eTech) This post answers some of the most frequently asked questions about online course accessibility. To learn more about the accessibility of specific instructional technologies, visit accessibility.ua.edu or consult the official documentation for that technology. What does making a course accessible actually mean? Accessibility means all students can

Implicit Design Principles: One Does Not Merely Sit

In “Implicit Design Principles: One Does Not Merely Sit,” Dr. Jennifer Roth-Burnette, head and assistant director of the ITAS Innovation Team, considers questions from the Digital Pedagogy Lab about implicit and explicit design principles: It was easy for me to think about the explicit principles that form part of my institution’s approach to design:  clarity,

Creating Personal, Interactive Online Courses

by Jessica Porter, Office of Educational Technology (eTech) A few weeks ago, I participated in a strategy swap at the Teaching Professor Technology Conference about engagement in online courses. Everyone agreed engagement is critical to online learning, yet we couldn’t decide how to facilitate connection and interaction beyond the usual tactics — video,  discussion boards,

Creating a Positive “Feel” for Online Classes

by Natalie Loper, Department of English As online coordinator for UA’s First-Year Writing Program, one issue I consistently face is how to create a positive classroom environment in online classes. Unlike face-to-face classes, where teachers can casually chat with students before and after class, get to know them during conferences and office hours, and gauge

Edgy Teaching: Learning Technologies as Frames for Inquiry

by Nathan Loewen, Department of Religious Studies “Down with bezels!” is one of the current technology fads and obsessions. Bezels are the framing edges of the screens that compose the furniture of our contemporary worlds. High praise is given to technologies whose screens have minimal edge surfaces. For example, Mac laptops are being disparaged because they

Interactive Map Brings Art History to Life

Hoping to make her online course match the in-class experience, Jenny Tucker teamed up with the Alabama Digital Humanities Center and Katy Allen of the College of Continuing Studies to build an interactive map for her Survey of Art course. ARTmap, as it’s officially called, combines a multilayered Google map with multimedia and discussion elements to create a richer online learning

An Inside Look at Online Teaching at UA

The Teaching Hub recently got the chance to interview everyone who teaches online courses for UA’s Department of Religious Studies. Thanks to help from the FRC, we gathered together across hundreds of miles with Blackboard Collaborate. In 25 minutes we discussed everything from the unique context of teaching online to what it takes to teach