Bb World 2011 — Pedagogy and Online Learning: Training Users in Backwards Design


John Doherty — Instructional Designer, Northern Arizona University
Wally Nolan — Lead Instructional Designer, Northern Arizona University

Both presenters started out by stating that online learning should be all about the pedagogy and not about the technology. In other words, instructors should not become so enamored of one particular technology that they forget to apply sound pedagogical principles when presenting content and engaging their students.

Like Missouri S&T, everyone at Northern Arizona University (NAU) is given a Blackboard course every semester. However, not everyone uses them equally well (again, like Missouri S&T).

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Bb World 2011 — Go Rubrics! Creating A+ Rubrics



Peggy Brown — Director of Instructional Design / Adjunct  Faculty, Syracuse University
Michael Fudge — Senior Systems and Network Support Administrator, Syracuse University

A few select members of EdTech had the opportunity to attend Blackboard World 2011 in Las Vegas (July 12-14). Bb World is a fairly large conference hosted by (of course) Blackboard. However, even though many of the sessions touched upon Blackboard, either directly or indirectly, others covered topics that are applicable to a wide range of teaching situations, where which LMS instructors use is not relevant to the discussion.

One such session was called: Go Rubrics! Creating A+ Rubrics.

The basic idea behind a rubric is that it is a way of evaluating and measuring student work according to some pre-established criteria. In other words, it is one more performance assessment, like tests or quizzes. However, unlike a multiple-choice test where students are either right or wrong, it is NOT simply a checklist and is often highly subjective. But it is still possible to use a rubric to set clear expectations between students and instructors. Students are often frustrated with instructors because they don’t know exactly what an instructor is looking for in a paper. Therefore, the feedback they receive on their first paper is used as the
“baseline” for future assignments. Using a rubric, especially one that is available for students to view, gives students a much better idea of the standards that will be used to gauge performance in the class.

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