The conversion of HCDI30531 to an online course based on the effective use of a small number of tools to make it easier to work with from the academic side, and less frustrating to use for the students. There are four main tools used in this course:
- Blackboard. The course has been laid out clearly for the students, so it is immediately obvious where they should go to find what information, the contents of each folder, and so on. This has all been accomplished using the standard Blackboard tools, with an emphasis on providing contextual information for folders using the text editor rather than just giving each folder a name. Training on various aspects of Blackboard can be found online, but those wishing to update the appearance of their course and make better use of folders may find these pages particularly useful.
- Padlet. Interaction with and between students is vital for a successful online course. HCDI30531 has made use of Padlet (more information on Padlet is available online), but there are other options including Blackboard’s own discussion board system. Whichever system is chosen, it should be simple to find and use, and you may wish to consider allowing anonymous posts and to keep the interactions visible to all students on the course. This is because there is often a hidden population of vicarious interactors among your students who do not wish to engage visibly but do benefit from observing and processing the interactions of others. The reasons for not interacting are varied but can include simple shyness, concern over being seen to ask “silly” questions, or worries about their standard of English.
- Zoom. Although Blackboard has a webinar system built in (Blackboard Collaborate Ultra), many instructors are choosing to use Zoom for their teaching. Some additional information on teaching using Zoom can be found online.
- Videos. Although video editing can be a difficult and time-consuming task, making simple edits to trim out unwanted content can be done easily. HCDI30531 uses Podcast Studio which provides a simple method of recording and editing videos using your own webcam and microphone. Those wishing to undertake more complex editing tasks should look at our training page on video editing.