educational technology

Engage Students with Socially Distant Annotation of Course Texts

by Nathan Loewen, Department of Religious Studies I hope that you and yours are keeping safe, healthy, and well this summer. With the University’s plan in place for Fall 2020, you might be taking more concrete steps in with your syllabus and course designs. Some of your planning might involve UA-supported online platforms and software.

Digital Tools, Foreign Lands, and Flying Machines*

by Nathan Loewen, Department of Religious Studies How would you prepare to visit a foreign country where English is not the primary language? How would you prepare to take along children? How do your ideas about preparing to travel compare to how you prepare to use digital tools? Does the analogy extend to how you

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

Apps for Better Class Participation

by John Miller, New College My father was a gadget man. He loved a new doo-dad. Even something called a “heat bar,” an aluminum hunk you plugged into a wall socket, whereupon it would (wait for it . . .) get hot. He bought a truck-load he was going to sell to keep Alabamian’s pipes

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

Put Your Best Phone Forward: Cellphones for In-Class Projects

by Nathan Loewen, Department of Religious Studies How did you obtain your first smartphone? I got a hand-me-down iPhone 3 in 2011, and it changed my world. I was about to leave for a research project in India (thanks to a grant from Fédération des CÉGEPs). My research technologies were glitchy and their codecs did not

How Padlet Can Help with Group Projects

by Lauren Cardon, Department of English During the Teaching Professor Technology Conference in Atlanta, I was a facilitator for a Strategy Swap session on group work. I met with two different groups of people for thirty minutes each, and we shared our strategies. Most of our discussion focused on group work in the classroom —

Want to Help Students Annotate? Here’s a Hypothes.is

by Nathan Loewen, Department of Religious Studies How do you annotate your texts? How do you think your students annotate their texts? Among the likely answers to the former include writing marginalia and underlining with a pen or pencil. Some may answer the latter the same way. In any case, the typical method for doing close reading