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February 25, 2011 / dlitgroup

Bernie Manker – Integrating Audio into Blackboard with Wimba Voice Tools

Bernie Manker, Spanish Professor
Department of Language and Thought 

I have been teaching Spanish at GRCC for 18 years. I have two MA’s – one in Bilingual Education from GVSU (1980)  and one in Spanish from MSU (1991).   I have used Blackboard since GRCC implemented it and I have used Wimba in one way or another for the last 7-8 years.  We used to have a “Language Lab” component to our SP program but due to the web-based programs being used by publishers we no longer take the time from class to go to the lab we are now able to do our “Lab” activities outside of class.  That too is possible because of Bb and Wimba.

Creating Engaging Courses with Audio

As a faculty member teaching Spanish I am always looking for ways in which my students can have more contact with the language outside of class.  For many years the use of technology provided the student with many more opportunities to read and write. But in recent years with Wimba Voice Tools in Blackboard they also get much more practice in listening and speaking.

Reading and writing can be done at the pace that the learner chooses but listening is dependent upon the person the learner is speaking with.  The more our students can hear different pacing, accents and pronunciations the more successful they will be in communicating with native speakers.  I have placed recordings and aural test items in the Content area for easy access by me and my colleagues.  I take them from the Content Area and put them in Course Documents and link from Announcements.

The Wimba Voice Tools have made my students more successful on tests and with participation in class.  It is common for my students to remind me to put the items on Blackboard so they can preview them.   They also help me by giving me one more way in which I can challenge the students and provide the time on task that they need.

Are you interested in learning more about using the Wimba Voice Tools in your own Blackboard course? If so, check out these tutorials:

How to use Wimba Voice Tools in Blackboard

More training opportunities are available through the Center for Teaching Excellence.


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