BigBlueButton – Your Bad Weather Backup Plan

Bad weather happens, but that doesn’t mean you have to cancel class. Instead, hold class online with BigBlueButton!

BigBlueButton is a free-to-use virtual classroom integrated into Blackboard. To use BigBlueButton, simply create a meeting room, and let students know they are to join you in that meeting room. With BBB, you’ll have video, audio, and text support with the ability to share your screen, notes, and files with students.

EdTech has written an easy-to-follow visual tutorial for creating and using a BigBlueButton meeting room. You can view the tutorial here:

Having a bad weather backup plan is a wonderful way to maintain continuity in your classes, promote accountability, and avoid losing valuable instruction time. I (Raz Kerwin) teach a technical communication class, and the Monday morning after our recent snowfall I held the morning meeting for my section online. I was impressed with the level of student buy-in and participation. I provided my students options, and I got results.

Successfully laying the groundwork to take your class online for a session or two is easier than you might think, and EdTech is here to help! Call or email today if you’d like to expand your options, and show Old Man Winter that you don’t cancel class just for a little bit of snow!

Reminder to Instructors: You Must Make Your Course “Available” For Students To Access It.

Blackboard courses are set to “Unavailable” by default; the instructor must make them “Available” in order for students to see and access the course from the Blackboard homepage. To set course availability using the control panel, navigate to Customization→Properties and set the course availability to “Yes.”

Here is a short visual tutorial of the required steps:

eLearning Community of Practice presents “Course organization and social presence” on Oct. 9th

UPDATE: “Course Organization and Social Presence” was a great session! Several engaging speakers challenged sixteen of S&T’s leading instructors to think about their course organization in both face-to-face and online/distance sections. The resulting small group conversation was a mixture of stimulating food for thought and lessons from practical teaching experience across several disciplines. Later, attendees discussed strategies for increasing instructor presence and student engagement through non-traditional means such as video syllabi. Near the end of the session, video creation and sharing was discussed, along with numerous tips for producing videos intended for use in the virtual classroom. 


On October 9th CERTI and EdTech will present “Course Organization and Social Presence” from 3:00PM to 4:30PM in Curtis Laws Wilson Library, Room 204. This eLearning Community of Practice / eFellows presentation will cover how instructors can set clear expectations as they redesign their courses for blended/online learning.

Objectives for this session include:

  • Create a plan for course organization
  • Identify instructor presence
  • Identify how instructor presence might be included in your course

All S&T instructors are welcome to attend!
Please RSVP with Diane Hagni at or by phone at (573) 341-7648



IT Maintenance on Thursday, February 13 affects Virtual Desktop Systems

Information Technology will be performing some routine maintenance during the Applications maintenance window (5 – 7 PM) on Thursday, February 13, 2014.

During this maintenance window, users will be unable to connect to virtual machines in the VDI pools. Already connected users will most likely lose their connection while systems are being updated.

Questions, comments, or concerns can be directed to the IT Help Desk (573-341-HELP or online at



Blackboard Collaborate Upgrade on Thursday, August 2, 2012

Blackboard Collaborate will be upgraded to the latest version at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 2, 2012. Collaborate is a virtual learning environment integrated into Blackboard.

The newest version has some minor enhancements such as greatly improved noise cancellation features and the ability to better monitor which permissions each participant has within the Collaborate session.

This upgrade is not expected to cause any outage of Blackboard or Collaborate services.

For more information, contact Educational Technology at

Blackboard Collaborate Training Opportunities

Educational Technology is offering several opportunities to learn about Blackboard Collaborate in August (before Fall 2012). Collaborate is a virtual learning environment where students and instructors can interact online much as they do within a traditional classroom.

To sign up for a training opportunity, visit the link below:

Each training opportunity will cover the following:

  • Uses (live class, record a class, virtual office hours)
  • Features (white board, application sharing, web tour, changing permissions, chat, polling)
  • Creating a new session
  • Accessing recorded sessions

For more information, contact EdTech at

Tegrity Lecture Capture Training Opportunities

Educational Technology is offering several opportunities to learn about Tegrity Lecture Capture in August (before Fall 2012). Tegrity records an instructor’s lecture notes for later review by students. Both students and instructors can add annotations to the recordings.

To sign up for a training opportunity, visit the link below:

Each training opportunity will cover the following:

  • When to use Tegrity
  • Getting started
  • Features
  • Accessing recordings and publishing recordings for student view
  • Advanced features

For more information, contact EdTech at

EdTech Travels to SLOAN-C Conference on March 28-29, 2001

The Educational Technology group (at least the “Ed” side consisting of Meg Brady, Angie Hammons, Julie Phelps, Barb Wilkins, and Malcolm Hays) are traveling to the 8th Annual Sloan Consortium Conference in Chicago on March 28-29, 2001. This conference is primarily about blended learning strategies.

Over the next few days, we hope to bring you some ideas discussed at the conference through the medium of this blog. Stay tuned for continuous updates!

TLT Conference 2009: Dr. Matt Insall

Wimba, Windows, MathCAD, etc., in Disparate Courses

[Evaluate this presentation]


We will describe how one may use Wimba (in Blackboard) to help in
teaching very different types of courses. For example, in a Linear
Algebra course, one can use MathCAD in a computer lab; in a Foundations
of Mathematics course, one may use Notepad and Wimba, also in a
computer lab; and in a Global Research course, one may use Wimba and
(of course) Blackboard in a computer lab.

TLT Conference 2009: Dr. Suzanna Long, Chris Moos, and Anne Bartel-Radic

Creating a Global Learning Experience: The Role of Multi-Institutional Partnerships in Course Design and Improvement

[Evaluate this presentation]


Virtual teaming is increasingly important in today’s business
environment. Providing real world opportunities that explore
collaboration across organizational cultures, time zones, and practice
gives students a tremendous competitive advantage and foster
experience-based learning. This session discusses lessons learned from
a multi-institutional partnership of universities in the design and
implementation of a global supply chain management course.