Teaching and Grading Timesaver: Using Turnitin Quickmarks with Hyperlinks

If you have used Turnitin for assignments to check for plagiarism, you already know it is a powerful tool.  But did you also know that you can grade assignments within Turnitin and use Quickmarks that you can customize to give detailed feedback with a simple click and drag?  At first, you might just use these Quickmarks for text comments.  However, they can be even more powerful teaching tools and provide detailed feedback to students if you include a hyperlink in the Quickmark to a tutorial video, assignment guidelines, or sample papers.  Want to learn how to add hyperlinks to your Quickmarks?  Check out this blog post from Turnitin and then contact Linda Macaulay if you would like support implementing this time-saving strategy in your courses.

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Posted in Home Page, Teaching and Learning Tagged with:

Prepare for Winter Break Before You Leave Campus

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Set Out of Office notices and make sure VPN works. Change your password if necessary. Then enjoy winter break with no computer worries!

Email Out of Office Notices

Notify Senders You’re Away from the Office

Phone Out of Office Notices

Set an Alternate Greeting on Your Office Phone

VPN

If you are doing any college work from home over winter break, before you leave make sure VPN is working and that you can connect to your network drives on your college-owned computer. On a personal computer check that you can connect using a remote desktop connection to ecfsHome-ts.

Network Password

Change Your Network/Email Password

If you haven’t changed your password since the beginning of the fall term, change it now to stay connected to email, JayWeb and Blackboard. You won’t have to do it again until April. Just make sure to remember the new password.  After you change your password, change it on all your devices. Use your new password before you leave campus.
Step by Step Directions & Video
Log on to OWA to test your new password.

WiFi – Update Your Password

After you change your email password, if you connect to EC_JAYNET_LOGIN on campus you will need to change the wireless password for that connection. This is not necessary if you connect to EC_OPEN_WIFI.

Email on Wireless Devices – Update Your Password

If you receive college email on any of your devices, such as an iPhone, update your mail settings to use the new password. Step by step instructions:  iPhone

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page, Phone Tips, Web Tips

Canvas is Coming to E-Town!

Canvas has recently been selected as E-Town’s learning management system, effective July 1, 2015.  By changing to Canvas, students, faculty and staff will have a flexible system accessible anywhere with internet access.  It includes opportunities for:

  • Notifications about class activity via text message, Facebook or Twitter!  That means you don’t have to login or rely just on email anymore.  Of course, if you don’t want to get updates on your social media accounts, you don’t have to.  Essentially, it just means it will be easier for the college to communicate with you and vice versa.
  • No more “system downtime.”  Blackboard provides major updates to their system every few months whereas Canvas is able to push out updates every three weeks.  Based on the way the systems are constructed, Canvas can do this without you even knowing it happened.
  • More, better features.  Faculty were sometimes limited by certain constraints on Blackboard that made it more difficult to offer a lot of variety in their courses.  Now, all courses will have links to each week right on the home page—front and center!  And, it’s much easier for faculty to use a course calendar and link assignments and dates.  Plus, if you have a video to submit—(or just want to respond to a discussion board question via video)–you can do it practically with the touch of a button!  No more need for YouTube or other external video recording systems.
  • Lots of support.  It was sometimes difficult to get a tutorial or figure out how to do something in Blackboard.  Canvas offers a multitude of excellent resources so that if you’re stuck on how to do something, you should be able to easily find the answer in Canvas’ help guides that are accessible right from your course.  The Canvas pilot users needed very little support and we expect that to be the same when the entire system rolls out.
  • iOS and Android products at no additional cost.  Canvas has fully committed to mobile technology so they currently offer course access via iOS and Android platforms. In fact, they have separate development and support teams for each.  That means, working on your phone or tablet has become that much easier. (And, you don’t have to pay!)
  • Functionality that you already understand.  Having told you about all these great features, it’s important to recognize that we expect the transition for students to be fairly minimal.  It will still have many of the same features you are used to using and we will provide guidance and training opportunities to support you.

Thank you for helping to make this transition a smooth one. We look forward to making the switch from Blackboard to Canvas and building enhanced online course sites at Elizabethtown College.   If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Linda Macaulay, instructional technologist, at X1554 or macaulayl@etown.edu.

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Posted in Canvas, Home Page Tagged with: , ,

Tech Shortcuts We’re Thankful For

With how fast technology is growing and developing, it’s a wonder anyone can keep up. Luckily, there are some great shortcuts to help keep you up to speed with technology. Here are some of the shortcuts we’re thankful for this Thanksgiving season:

 

For Keyboards:

  • Copy & Paste – Did you know you can use your keyboard to copy and paste without your mouse? For PCs, simply press the [Ctrl] and [C] keys to copy or [Ctrl] and [V] to paste.  For Mac press Command + [C] to copy and Command + [V ] to paste.
  • Switch Between Open Applications – If you want to switch between open applications on your PC, simply press the [Alt] and [Tab] keys. It will automatically switch to the next open program. On a Mac press Command + [Tab] to cycle forward or Command + [Shift] + [Tab] to cycle backwards.

For Web Browsing:

  • Fast Scrolling – Sometimes you get to the bottom of the webpage and need to return to the top. It can be a pain to scroll all the way up. Now you don’t have to anymore. On a PC, simply hit the [Home] key on your keyboard to return to the top of a page. To return to the bottom, click the [End] key. On a Mac, click the Command + Up Arrow [↑] to go to the top of the page or Command + Down Arrow [↓] to move to the bottom.
  • Bookmark Shortcut – Never use your mouse to create a bookmark again! Simply click [Ctrl] + [D] on your PC keyboard or Command + [D] to create a new bookmark or favorite in Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer or Safari.

For iPhones:

For Androids:

  • Use a 3rd Party Keyboard – Instead of the standard keyboard on Android phones, you can install a 3rd party keyboard which can be customized to your style of typing!  This can be extremely useful when you want to type in a hurry.
  •  Customize Your Home Screen Widgets – Personalizing your homepage can streamline information on your phone and make life easier. For example, you can put a weather widget on the home screen so you’re ready for the weather before you even get out of bed.

For Facebook:

  • Streamline Your Newsfeed – You can adjust what you see in your newsfeed by filtering out pages, apps, and people.  It’s easy and helps you navigate only to the information you want.
  • Like a Photo Without Clicking – “Liking” a picture doesn’t have to be a mouse click anymore!  Simply hit the [L] key on your computer while viewing the picture you want to like. Easy and quick!

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page

Tricks and Shortcuts in iOS 8

iOS 8 has brought with it new features, accessibility, and more. From more options for photo retouching to a more responsive Siri, it’s an exciting time for owners of iOS devices. However, it can also be more confusing, especially if you just got used to iOS7. If you want to find out what’s new and how to get the most use out of all the new features, check out this Atomic Learning series of videos by simply logging in with your Etown username and password. These videos are just a few of the thousands available to all faculty, staff, and students via our subscription to Atomic Learning and can be very useful when learning any program or new tool.

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Posted in Home Page, Phone Tips Tagged with: , ,

Making the Switch to Office 2013

Office2013VideoHaven’t had time to attend the one hour Office 2013 training sessions ITS offers twice a month…
and you’re trying to get used to Office 2013? Available whenever you are, watch a 25 minute training video created just for Elizabethtown College employees and customized with the most important changes and features you’ll really use. Click on the image to start the video.

Would you rather attend a class with a live person instructing? Look for Office 2013 Getting Started in the schedule of classes.

Want to know more? Helpful materials are available at ITS web site’s Office 2013 Rollout page.

  • New Office Ribbon & New Features – printable PDF file
  • Downloadable Quick Start Guides from Microsoft for each Office program
  • Microsoft’s “Making the Switch” videos and tutorials
  • How to obtain Office 2013 for your home computer

Don’t have Office 2013 on your college owned computer? Install it yourself using step by step directions available here!

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page, Training

Halloween Tech Villains

UhOhWe’ve all had a moment when we sat at our computers, wondering why it was running slower than it did when we first bought it. When you take it in to ITS to find out why, they ask if you’ve downloaded anything recently. You don’t remember downloading anything, but the tech gurus are fairly certain you have a virus or malware. How did this happen?

Whether you realize it or not, malware (the villain of technology) is everywhere. When you visit a website and a pop up appears offering you a free download, it is most likely malware, dressed up as ”must have” software. From offers and ads on websites to that pop up offering you a soulmate for only $19.99 a month, malware is always trying to find a way in to your computer. But how can you keep the villains out?

There are many ways you can protect your computer, including running security scans and installing ad blockers. Etown provides Symantec Antivirus protection and it is recommended that you run a security scan at least once a week to check for viruses and other malware. In addition, most browsers offer an Add On which blocks ads and stops them from downloading anything on to your computer. This includes blocking ads on YouTube and Pandora. Check out the Add Ons available for your browser in the options or tools panel.

To learn more about malware, check out the ITS Knowledgebase (http://bit.ly/ZRoEr6) and this short video from Google on identifying malware: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvIXGeB1WgE

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page, Web Tips

Door Access Control Project

Blue JayCollaboration from ITS, Facilities and Campus Security helped bring to life this multi-faceted project which not only provides more security on campus, but also provides easier and more secure building access for students and faculty.

The project includes installing door proximity card readers, door position sensors, electric strikes, surveillance cameras, and even new doors in some cases. Phase 1, by far the most complicated phase of the project, is now complete and included many backend system tasks including, but not limited to, designing and programming the new system, re-carding the entire campus, and migrating existing systems and cameras into the new door access control system.

This project will not only help usher the campus into a modern card system, but will also improve security around campus and in the buildings. To find out more about this project, contact Campus Security at  security@etown.edu.

 

The buildings upgraded by the Door Access Control (DAC) project are below:

Phase 1: Residence Halls, Campus Center, and Alpha Hall 

Phase 2: Academic Buildings 

Phase 3: Administrative Buildings

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Posted in Home Page

Ask the Phone for a Number

Avoid looking up a phone number. Instead ask the phone for the number!  Don’t even pick up the handset!

Dial extension 1100.
When asked, say the name of the person you are trying to call and you will be connected.

If you really want to look up a phone number use the On-Line Campus Directory.
Go to http://www.etown.edu/directory/index.aspx. Then type the person’s name or department in the search box.
OnLineDirectory
SearchBox

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Posted in Home Page, Phone Tips

BlackBoard Rubric Work Around

blackboardUsing the blog or journal tools in Blackboard, although useful, can be frustrating when it comes to grading. Many instructors have had problems with the single grade you can input for the entire tool, regardless of how many posts there are throughout the semester.

Now there is a creative work around solution! When using the rubric tool, simply create a row in the rubric for each entry and assign points per entry. This solves the singular grade issue and avoids students stressing out because they see a very low grade at the beginning of the semester.

Bonus Tip:  Add a row to the rubric each time a new post is due so the total points possible for the assignment is up-to-date with each entry.

Find out more by reading the Blackboard help guide on Rubrics here: https://help.blackboard.com/en-us/Learn/9.1_SP_10_and_SP_11/Instructor/040_Student_Course_Experience/Student_Performance/Rubrics

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page, Teaching and Learning, Web Tips

Turnitin Student Success Week

ScrollWheelWhen was the last time you attended a webcast or online activity orientated on student success in the classroom? If you can’t remember when (or even if you can) make sure to check out Student Success Week put on by Turnitin October 6 – 10. This online conference is full of tips, tricks, and ideas for innovating the classroom while maintaining a balance between classroom assessments and individual-focused teaching.

Find out more here: http://www.turnitin.com/en_us/resources/student-success-week

 

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Posted in Home Page, Teaching and Learning, Training

Faculty and Staff Websites

WordPressLogoDid you know that Elizabethtown College Faculty and Staff can create personal websites? The Office of Marketing and Communications offers this service along with a pre-designed free WordPress template. If you need help working on your website, there are periodic training workshops offered by the ITS Department and PDF How To’s on the Knowledgebase.

Visit the Faculty and Staff  Websites ITS Knowledgebase article to find out how to submit a request, attend a training workshop, receive desk side assistance or “How-To” documentation.

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page, Training, Uncategorized

How to Not Back Up Those Embarrassing Selfies

Do you have a lot of personal pictures on your devices? Do you know where they’re stored? A majority of smartphone users have no idea that their device is automatically backing up these photos by putting copies of them in the Cloud.If you’d like to stop sharing, there’s a simple solution. Click on the link below to read how to stop backing up your photos and keep those embarrassing selfies a secret.

How to Turn Off iCloud Backup

Adapted From Slate.Com by  Will Oremus

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Posted in Computer Tips, Home Page, Phone Tips, Web Tips

Why Wireless Printers and Routers Aren’t Allowed on Campus

Every year some students bring wireless printers or routers on campus hoping to use them. However, attempting to set up these devices interferes with the campus wireless network and can affect not only your devices but those of students around you.

Using a wireless printer is similar to blasting music from your room when the school radio station  already broadcasting. The two music streams interfere with each other and neither broadcast can be enjoyed.

Instead of using the wireless feature, bring a USB printer cable and use a wired connection to print in your room. Also, be sure that the wireless is turned off on the printer.  If you don’t have a printer that uses a wired connection, don’t worry. Etown allots 500 pages per semester free of charge for printing on campus.

Routers are not allowed in any capacity on campus. They interfere with connections to the campus wireless network and are against the college’s Acceptable Use Policy. All students have signed this policy prior to living on campus and must adhere to it during their time as students at Elizabethtown College. To review the Acceptable Use Policy, click here.

If you have already brought a router to campus and have been using it, please stop immediately.  This improves the wireless experience for everyone on campus.

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Posted in Home Page, New Student Tips

New Renewal Process for Student Clubs

Clubs, both new and existing, will now register through JayWeb for the school year. Each year between April 1st and September 22nd, clubs will be required to register and Student Senate will process the registrations for approval and constitution review. Clubs can also use the registration form to request funds and make changes to officers.

This change in registration forms also eliminates an issue in the past where existing clubs would lose access to their resources (club email, etc.) until they reregistered. From now on, as long as the existing club reregisters by the deadline, there will be no access loss.

New clubs, which can be started at any point during the school year, can also use this form to register their club. All clubs must be registered and approved by Student Senate before access to technology resources like club email will be implemented.

In order to register your club, visit this link. You  must be logged in to JayWeb to view the form.

Student Senate estimates a 3-4 day review process for constitutions of new clubs before registration changes are made.

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Posted in Home Page, New Student Tips