Fall 2011 Faculty E-News

Faculty E-News

OSU Ecampus Faculty E-News
"Your Electronic Link to Teaching at a Distance"

Published by: OSU Extended Campus
Oregon State University, Corvallis, Ore.; Fall 2011 Issue

Oct. 12, 2011

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Thank you for taking a few moments to read the fall 2011 edition of the Ecampus Faculty E-News. Please let us know if you would like to submit an article or see a specific topic addressed in a future edition. And please contact us if you have questions about any of our services. We appreciate your feedback.

OSU academic calendar

Task force on Ecampus — Review and reaffirmation

Dave KingA message from Dave King, Associate Provost, Outreach and Engagement 

During this past summer, a task force reviewing certain policies and procedures at Ecampus – appointed by Provost Sabah Randhawa and chaired by Honors College Dean Dan Arp – submitted a report on its deliberations.

The task force devised some recommendations that have been submitted for review to the Faculty Senate. Read more to see the recommendations that received strong support:

New website a portal to distance-education research

A message from Lisa Templeton, Ecampus Executive Director

Lisa TempletonAs a national leader in online education, OSU Extended Campus strives to remain at the forefront by examining the latest research and trends in our field. Ecampus wants to engage in a larger conversation about online teaching and learning effectiveness, and we recently launched a new website that shares information with those interested in distance learning.

The Online Education Trends website is a means for OSU Ecampus to better serve our faculty, students, administration and constituents by sharing studies relevant to our ever-expanding field. The website is a portal to research by respected members of academia and independent, educational organizations, such as The Sloan Consortium and the Journal of Online Learning and Teaching. We will provide links to and summaries of these studies to help you gain an understanding of the latest trends and findings, as well as inform you of best practices that can help you improve your online courses.

OSU faculty members who teach Ecampus courses often submit links to research done by themselves, their colleagues or outside parties, and we welcome your submissions and invaluable insight. In fact, some of the website’s most recent posts include studies conducted by esteemed OSU faculty Dan Edge and Dana Sanchez and Susana Rivera-Mills.

We hope the website meets your needs as you help Ecampus continue to meet the needs of adult learners throughout the world.

Best wishes for this new school year,

Lisa Templeton

Engage your students more with a wiki

BlackboardPromote active collaboration in your Ecampus course by using the new wiki tool in Blackboard. Your students can create content in a shared space in the course site, and you can watch it unfold. You have the ability to track each student’s contribution and then grade them from within the tool itself. Access the wiki tool through your Control Panel > Course Tools > Wikis.

How could you use a wiki in your course? Here are a few ideas that give your students a chance to actually create content for the course:
  • Create a glossary of technical terms
  • Create a newsletter for reporting on a breaking event
  • Create a community of practice virtual space
  • Create a student-constructed FAQ list
  • Post research project results for group analysis
  • Create an online guide, reference lists or outlines
  • Research items of local interest that can be updated and shared
Karen Watte
Faculty Training Coordinator

Want a grant? We want your proposals

Ulysses S. GrantIn a renewed effort to encourage research, development and scholarship in the area of distance education, OSU Ecampus is again accepting proposals from faculty and departments for grant funding.

The expectation is that these funded proposals will further the strategic and programmatic objectives articulated in the University Strategic Plan – in particular as it relates to access and instructional excellence – and will contribute to the outreach mission of distance and extended education at OSU.

Our intention is to support research that will inform us about our practices and help us better understand questions regarding distance education that focus on: student success, curriculum, academic rigor, learning outcomes, blended/hybrid learning environments, virtual labs, uses of new technologies in the virtual classroom, services to distance students and more.

Ecampus hopes these grants may also support your efforts to generate larger research projects and funding for your college. Priority will be given to proposals that help OSU improve the effectiveness and quality of distance education in general or specific fields or departments.

Find more information about the Ecampus grant proposals online. Email Alfonso Bradoch, Director of Department and Learner Services, for any assistance needed, or call him at 7-9116.

PDT team develops blog to share, cultivate ideas

PDT blogThe Ecampus Program Development and Training (PDT) team has a new blog, intended to share the ongoing work of this creative group and provide useful tips to faculty members as they develop ideas for their online courses.

Blog categories include videos, interactive diagrams, animations, illustrations, games and other resources and tools. The blog is intended to help with the following goals:

  • Communicate with OSU faculty, instructors and course developers, and provide creative inspiration and an introduction to the scope of our services
  • Receive feedback from instructors and course developers via comments on blog posts
  • Facilitate collaboration and communication among PDT team members
  • Create a cohesive, easy-to-navigate portfolio of learning objects, resources and tools
  • Model productive use of a social networking tool
  • Eventually, communicate with the larger community of distance-education professionals

You can visit the PDT blog online or subscribe to an RSS feed to be notified when a new post is added. Contact blog administrators Shannon Riggs and Jon Perry for more information.

OSU faculty, students weigh in on Ecampus

Student surveyNearly 200 OSU faculty members and more than 1,600 students completed separate surveys this summer in an effort to provide valuable feedback regarding Ecampus courses and services.

The complete results of the surveys are too extensive to list here, so here are a few highlights of what you, your colleagues and your students had to say:

  • 78 percent of faculty/instructors said the student mastery of course learning outcomes were the same or better in online courses vs. site-based courses
  • 89 percent of students said tests are an important factor in maximizing their educational experience, whereas 80 percent of instructors said tests are important to the student learning experience.
  • 70 percent of students said it's "very important" to have an instructor who is skilled at using Blackboard.
  • 91 percent of OSU faculty said they would recommend developing and teaching an online course through Ecampus.
  • 63 percent of students said they would recommend Ecampus courses to their friends; an additional 30 percent said they "maybe" would do so.

A look back at a record-setting graduation

Jennifer JohnsonEcampus celebrated its largest graduation class in history during the June 11 commencement ceremony on campus. All told, 386 distance students received their diplomas from OSU, nearly double the amount from 2010.

The number of Ecampus graduates has skyrocketed 688 percent since 49 students graduated in 2005. What's more, Ecampus accounted for 14 percent of all of this year's OSU graduates, another new high.

Visit the 2011 Ecampus graduates profile website to read about OSU's newest alums, and watch a video that features some of the 46 students who traveled to Corvallis from all over the country to attend graduation this summer

Thank you for reading the fall 2011 edition of Ecampus Faculty E-News.

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