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July 1, 2010 / dlitgroup

DLIT Weekly Updates – June 25th & July 2

The following items are updates from the Distance Learning and Instructional Technologies Department for the week ending on Friday, June 25th and July 2nd.

  • Starfish Training – The pilot has begun for using Stafish Early Alert.  The purpose of this system is to provide faculty with an easy way to raise a flag (concern) about a student through the online system.  The system is available through a tab in Blackboard.  In addition the system will be used to automatically report students that haven’t logged into their online course within 7 days.  Once a flag is raised, counselors/advisors can intervene to help address issues with retention.  Szymon Machajewski assisted in the training of counselors and faculty as well as the configuration of the system.  Here is a screenshot of what the system looks like:
  • Blackboard Security Update – A hotfix was applied to Blackboard to prevent a student from submitting an assessment more than 1 time and using the answers in the first attempt as a key when filling out the assessment for a 2nd time.
  • Blackboard 8 Production Copy – A copy of production was completed on June 18th for use in creating the Bb 9 production system for Fall.  Szymon Machajewski used this copy to create a new production Blackboard 9 environment.
  • Streamlining Online/Hybrid Course Development – On June 16th, Garry Brand, Laurie Foster, Bill Faber, and Eric Kunnen met to document a more streamlined and consistent campus approach for the creation, approval, and quality evaluation for online/hybrid courses at GRCC.
  • Blackboard 9 Production Server – The production 9 server was updated with correct tabs, modules, and building blocks in preparation to release to faculty.
  • Blackboard 9 Communication – The communication process around the upgrade begins with an email to leadership.  Faculty will be notified at the end of the week.
  • Blackboard Inc. Visit – Blackboard came to campus this week and spent a day and a half with our Bb Team and several faculty to assist us in our upgrade to Blackboard 9.1 as well as to have a dialogue about how we use Blackboard and our suggestions as to how Blackboard can be improved in the future.  We had the opportunity to meet face-to-face with product designers, user interface specialists, product managers, and product marketing team members.  Blackboard is mission critical at GRCC and we greatly appreciated the ability to have a direct dialogue with Blackboard regarding enhancements we would like to see, as well as the ability to help shape the future roadmap of Blackboard.  Here are a few photos from the visit:
  • Innovation Challenge – Eric Kunnen met with Moss Ingram, Liz McCormick, and Patrick Lapenna on plans to leverage the use of a Blackboard organization site for the collection of digital file entries as well as to convey the grading of the entries through the use of the Blackboard Grade Center.
  • Blackboard eCard – The new online card transaction system that will replace the RaiderCard “My Accounts” feature that displays the balance on a card and also allows for electronic deposits was configured.  However, the system is not yet ready for production.  The new eCard system is required for PCI compliance.
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