Collaboration & Web 2.0


Indiana U Releases Free Guide to E-Text Programs

Indiana University is sharing lessons learned from its eTexts program in a free e-book titled eTexts 101: A Practical Guide. The book tells the story of I.U.'s own e-text experience, the economics of e-texts and campus bookstores, accessibility issues, communication strategies and more. It also includes perspectives from publishers and other universities that have worked through similar initiatives.  

Using Collaborative Crowdsourcing to Give Voice to Diverse Communities

A crowdsourcing tool helped create a safe place for sensitive discussions on diversity and inclusion at NYU.

Fewer Admissions Offices Using Student Social Media to Influence Acceptance Decisions

While most admissions officers consider checking out the social media profiles of college applicants "fair game," few actually do so. In a recent set of surveys, Kaplan Test Prep queried 388 admissions leaders from top U.S. colleges and universities as well as 914 high school students who have attended a Kaplan course. Among the first group, 68 percent reported having no qualms about checking out student social media profiles on sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Just 29 percent said they have actually done it.

McGraw-Hill Education Intros Game-Based Learning Activities

McGraw-Hill Education has added more than 50 game-based learning activities to its digital course materials. The company worked with Muzzy Lane Software to develop simulations that "provide opportunities for students to apply their learning in experiential situations that mimic real-life work scenarios," according to a news announcement. Students access the content via the McGraw-Hill Connect digital learning platform.

New Virginia Law Mandates Creation of OER Guidelines

A new Virginia law mandates creation of guidelines for open educational resources at colleges and universities. H.B. 454 requires the governing boards of public institutions to implement guidelines for the adoption and use of low-cost and no-cost O.E.R. in their courses offered at such institution. However, while the policies and procedures are required, no instructor would be forced to use O.E.R. The guidelines can also address the use of "low-cost commercially published materials."



OER Vendor Top Hat Commits to CARE; Opens Content

An open education resource vendor has committed to following the CARE Framework for the care and feeding of OER available through its site, while also announcing that 90 percent of the resources in its own OER repository will be freely available to students. Top Hat, which has a cloud-based teaching platform and other digital learning tools, announced its "open content initiative," eliminating platform or subscription fees for access to its course content Marketplace.

D2L Updates Brightspace with Professional Development Features

D2L's Brightspace learning platform now features a variety of ways to organize and manage faculty and staff professional development. Bringing these capabilities into Brightspace eliminates the need to maintain a separate learning management system for faculty development, according to the company. "Instructors and staff can use the same learning system to develop their professional skills that their learners are using — which saves organizations money, resources, budget and time,” explained John Baker, president and C.E.O. of D2L, in a statement.

Campus Labs to Acquire Chalk & Wire

Data and assessment company Campus Labs is expanding its analytics platform with the acquisition of Chalk & Wire. Chalk & Wire's learning assessment and credentialing tools will "allow Campus Labs to provide enhanced and integrated ways to assess student learning [and] unlock the power of student learning across varied, measurable learning paths," according to a news announcement.

Panopto Adds NewTek NDI Support

Panopto has added support for the NewTek NDI standard to its lecture capture system. This allows Panopto's software to be used in conjunction with NDI-enabled devices, including IP-based cameras.

Ohio Consortium Textbook Deals to Save Students Nearly $40 Million a Year

Students in the state of Ohio could potentially save $39.7 million annually on the cost of their textbooks, thanks to a new wholesale pricing deal. OhioLINK, a consortium of academic libraries across the state's colleges and universities, has secured agreements with four major textbook publishers — John Wiley & Sons, McGraw-Hill Education, Pearson and Macmillan Learning — to reduce the wholesale price of e-textbooks by up to 80 percent and courseware by up to 55 percent for member institutions.

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