Graduate Theological Union

online learning

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Faculty Workshop: Creating Videos for Moodle

When: Thursday, August 22, 9:00 am – 12:30 pm | Where: Computer Lab, GTU Library

Facilitated by Dr. Jay Johnson, PSR Faculty

Successfully moving your course online

Laurie Isenberg at PSR pointed out this great article, Transition from Tradition: 9 Tips for successfully moving your face-to-face course online from eLearn magazine. It's filled practical information, particularly about how to communicate with online students. A great read! Thanks, Laurie.


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Incredibly easy way to add files in Moodle

Now you can simply drag a file from your computer into your course in Moodle. It is as simple as this:

  1. Open your course in Moodle and turn editing on by clicking the button on the upper right of the screen.
  2. Locate the file you want to add on your computer.
  3. Click on the file to select it and then drag it to the place in the course where you want it to appear. Release the mouse button and the file is added automatically.

Click here to watch a video to see just how easy it is.

Faculty Workshop: Moodle in the Theological Classroom – Much More Than Busy-Work

Many faculty are making greater use of the GTU's Moodle facilities, both in fully online courses, and in "regular" face-to-face courses.  Some of us started by simply uploading additional readings, and have been gradually branching out into discussion forums, audio and video recordings, and using the functions that Moodle provides for grading and group work.  Some of us have taken courses, either through the GTU library or outside organizations.  But effective use of Moodle depends most of all on clear thinking about our teaching outcomes and objectives, rather than on simply using the "bells and whistles" correctly.  All interested faculty are invited to gather for a brown bag lunch and informal conversation about developing pedagogical approaches that make the most effective use of what Moodle can offer us as theological educators.  Please come prepared to share your experiences, your questions, and your hopes. 

Facilitated by Susanna Singer, CDSP Faculty | When: Tuesday August 20, 12:30 – 2:00 PM | Where: Mudd 102, PSR

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How do I ...?

Remember that great activity you want to add to your class on Moodle but need a reminder of how to work it? Want to browse your options and try out something new? Moodlerooms offers easy  how-to guides--both videos and text--and detailed information in their Knowledge Base.  There you can find out everything from how to do everything from setting up your gradebook to viewing what activities your students have participated in during the past week. To find the "Facilitate" section for instructors, follow the link above and then scroll down to the 3rd heading. You can also search the page for a specific activity or resource. Happy exploring!

Facilitating Online Discussions

Answer: 58,956. Question: How many separate posts did GTU users post in Moodle during the Spring 2013 semester. Surprised?  At the GTU, many instructors include forums in our classes; after posting files, it is the way we use Moodle the most. But quantity, of course, is never enough. What makes for a vigorous online discussion that supports your learning objectives for a class? Simmons College has posted an online interview with professor Sarah Haavind about Facilitating Online Discussions.

Put electronic devices in your classroom to good use!

laptop, tablet and smart phoneStudents show up for class these days with an array of electronics--smart phones, tablets, e-readers and computers. In his blog post, Taking Advantage of “Disruptive Technology” in the Classroom, Justin W. Marquis, Ph.D. offers some great suggestions about how to get students to use those devices productively in class, keeping their attention in the classroom. There are also a variety of activities, such as the choices feature, quizzes etc., in Moodle that you can use in the classroom.



PBS Resources for the Classroom

PBS Learning Media has short videos and other resources specifically designed for use by educators that are drawn from PBS programs. Registering on the site and using the materials is free. In addition, they have relatively inexpensive professional development programs for teachers, including self-paced online classes. While the material is primarily listed for K-12 school use, some content is marked for college and above (13+) or would be applicable for adult learners. A few good examples are,

Finding the perfect image

meditation chamberby Justin Tanis | The right image invites viewers in and helps them deepen their understanding of the subject; it also helps students who learn best visually. There are some great sources for publicly available photographs that are free to use and that keep you on the right side of the copyright laws. Here are some strong sources:

Using technology to increase diverse student engagement

by Justin Tanis | Tweets, YouTube, Spotify ... how does all this technology relate to the classroom, especially for the less technical among us? The article Diverse Students Go Digital, from last week's Chronicle of Higher Education, details the practical ways in which professor Shawn Francis Peters engages at-risk students through social media and the pedagogical reasons for his choices.

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