Online teaching ideas and resources.

Hoping folks share information here about their experience teaching online. What has worked well and what problems have you faced? Which platforms do we like best? How can we capture our students’ attention online when we lack the glitz of other online presenters?

6 Replies to “Online teaching ideas and resources.

  1. I taught a grad class using Blackboard Collaborate Ultra. I thought it worked really well, but perhaps that had something to do with it being a small grad class. We could all see each others faces and hear each other. The “raise hand” thing seemed to mess things up when folks tried it so we just skipped that–which again worked with a small class. Interested to hear how it goes with a bigger group.

  2. Brandon Fitelson writes:
    “Branden’s ZOOM DEMO (3/15/20 @ 1pm eastern) info.
    I will be holding a Zoom teaching demo tomorrow at 1pm eastern time.
    It will be a Zoom meeting. The link is here:
    https://zoom.us/j/221859820
    If you plan to join this meeting, then please do the following four (4) things:
    (1) download Zoom
    https://zoom.us/download
    (2) download the slides for my Zoom demo
    http://fitelson.org/zoom_demo.pdf
    (3) Click the above meeting link at 1pm eastern time tomorrow (3/15).
    (4) When you join the meeting, your mic and video will be OFF.
    Please keep them off. I will explain why tomorrow (see slide 1 of the demo).
    I will be recording the demo and posting it on my website, so that people can view it later. So, it is not essential that you be there live. We can only support up to 100 participants in the live meeting anyhow, so you may be turned away if there are too many participants. In that case, I encourage you to download the session. I will will also be posting links on Facebook and Twitter to the demo, so further discussion of them will be possible online on Sunday evening.

  3. Brandon Fitelson writes:

    Here’s a link to the video of the Zoom demo we just did.
    http://fitelson.org/zoom_demo.mp4
    It begins with a pre-amble that lasts 2 minutes, which shows me starting up the software used (i.e., Acrobat, Illustrator, and Zoom itself). Then, there is 4:45 of music (I always play music at the beginning of my classes). And, finally, the demo proper starts at the 6:45 mark, and runs until the end (45:11 in total running time — with a Q&A for the last section).
    Here’s a link to the “scribbles” Illustrator document (saved in pdf format) from the video.
    http://fitelson.org/scribbles_zoom_demo.pdf
    And, here are the slides from the demo (note the final slide containing links to some helpful YouTube tutorials for various tools mentioned in the demo).
    http://fitelson.org/zoom_demo.pdf
    I hope this makes some people feel more confident about doing online teaching. It’s very doable!

  4. I’m teaching a bioethics course and will replace an organ transplant unit with a unit on Covid-19. I’m working on a rough plan to have students work in groups to produce ethics recommendations for US policymakers on either a short video or website. The programs I’m hoping to use are Webex or Zoom (for video), Perusall (for social annotating of texts), and Google Drive (for student collaboration on the project and creating a website).

    (1) Are others who are teaching applied ethics who are integrating something like this into their course as they go online? Some of the literature on scarce resource allocation (like this- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19186274) will translate pretty well. Would be great to curate some good resources on ethics and Covid-19 specifically.

    (2) Instead of holding class online during the normal meeting time, my TA and I may meet with small groups on Webex for 15 minute periods twice a week during that time and help facilitate their work on the Covid-19 project. Curious if others have tried this for bigger classes.

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