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May 26, 2011 / dlitgroup

Weekly Updates – May 27

The following updates are from the DLIT Department for the week ending May 27th.


This area includes international, national, regional, state, and local activities.

  • ACTL Meeting Agenda – Eric Kunnen is member on the EDUCAUSE Advisory Committee for Teaching and Learning.  The committee met to discuss the following initiatives:
    1. Mobile computing
    1. Effective uses of the LMS to enhance teaching
    1. Learning space design/re-design
  • BbWorld Session Highlights – Eric Kunnen’s “conference must-see list” was highlighted on Twitter via @Blackboard: Wondering what #BbWorld11 sessions to attend? Check out must-sees from @jpostonday @ekunnen. something for everyone  Original Tweet:
  • BbWorld Presentation – Szymon Machajewski, Garry Brand, Bill Faber, and Eric Kunnen met to discuss finalizing the conference presentation entitled: “Leveraging Academic Analytics in System Administration, Professional Development, and Course Improvement”
  • DL and Online Program Meeting – DLIT is working to assemble representatives from Ferris, Davenport, and GVSU together to discuss distance learning and share common problems, solutions, and ideas.
  • BbWorld Conference Planning – DLIT hosted a meeting to compare notes and to see how those attending the conference can best capture (and relay live) our learning at BbWorld and bring it back to campus.  Attending the meeting was:  Bill Faber, Garry Brand, Eric Kunnen, Ann Alexander, Diane Sparks, and Szymon Machajewski
    Here are the highlights from the meeting:
    • Kevin O’Halla, Deb Vilmont and Tricia Siegel are also attending the conference!
    • Twitter – If you are a twitter user, use the hashtag: #bbworld11 and #grcc  (Conference attendees plan to tweet during the conference and include both hashtags for live updates.)
    • BbWorld attendees have a blog and we plan to contribute before, during, and after the event.  We plan to post the sessions we have attended as well as highlights and key learning from the conference at:  (We have Ann, Eric, Szymon, Garry, Bill, Tim, and Diane as authors of the blog so far.)
    • When we return the team will look to create a CTE session or perhaps an IIPD type of of report out.
    • There is a GRCC DLIT Website reviewing highlights from previous conferences here:


This area includes College work related to teams and committees.

School of Arts & Sciences, Student Affairs, Workforce Development, and Instructional Support & Interdisciplinary Studies.

This area includes participation in the above schools as a representative of DLIT.

College Action Projects

This area includes participation in any CAP work related to the college.

  • The DL CAP Team is currently working on writing our sub-reports for the Distance Learning Business Plan.  The target is to have a very rough draft completed before July 1st.

Department Action Projects

This area includes accomplishments or milestones regarding Departmental Action Project(s).

  • Project 1 – Extend DL Program
    • The Deans Council Sub-Committee recently approved for development:MA 108 – Trigonometry
      Faculty Course Developer:  Jim Chesla
      Department Head: Alejandro Saldivar.
  • Project 2 – Enhance Classroom and Instructional Technologies
    • Summer Technology Institute – The STI was communicated to faculty at large through the CTE  The DLIT EOL Faculty have set up a meeting to plan out the facilitation of the event.  The plan is also to include the equipment purchased through the GRCC Digital Initiative , which was a budget request for last fiscal year.  (Note this item is also mentioned below as their is a connection to Action Project #3 – Extending the Bb Learn Platform.)
  • Project 3 – Extend Blackboard Learn, Content, Community
    • Bb Connect – DLIT and IT are Working to rollout Blackboard Connect for Bb Learn.  This will provide enhanced ability for faculty to communicate with students via text message and text to voice.
    • No Login – Instructors that haven’t logged into Blackboard for Winter and Summer 11 were emailed resources for training.  This report was provided by Szymon Machajewski and is a result of the AGC policy on minimum standards of Bb use by faculty.
    • Summer Technology Institute – Garry Brand is working to organize the institutes with the other DLIT EOL Faculty to be held:
      Monday, 6/20 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM   Blackboard Boot Camp
      Tuesday, 6/21 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM  Advanced Blackboard
      Wednesday, 6/22 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM  Project ShowcaseAND

      Monday, 8/22 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM   Blackboard Boot Camp
      Tuesday, 8/23 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM  Advanced Blackboard
      Wednesday, 8/24 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM  Project Showcase

      Day: 1
      Topic: Blackboard Basics
      Leads: Diane and Luann

      Day: 2
      Topic: Blackboard Advanced
      Leads: Tim and Ann

      Day: 3
      Topic: Project Day
      Lead: IT/D

Other Work within Your Department

This area includes accomplishments or milestones within the department.

  • DLIT Web – Nate Schumacher, Jose Mora, and Eric Kunnen met to review the needs for better faculty support materials for Blackboard and other instructional technologies for the DLIT website.
  • “Rethinking Higher Education in an Online and Recession-Wary World” – Liz McCormick sent an article and this quote is worth highlighting:Carey (2009) adds that higher education needs to heed the warning signs currently being experienced by traditional newspapers increasingly threatened by online resources. That is, traditional subscriptions and revenues continue to decline whereas Internet growth continues to grow. If higher education fails to appreciate the importance of online education to its future, it too may increasingly struggle to find its relevance.  

    Carey, K. April 3, 2009. “What Colleges Should Learn from Newspapers’ Decline.” The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Learning Plans/Evaluation Plans

This area contains information related to Learning Plans or Evaluation Plans.


Additional noteworthy items.


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