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Online Course Content

Digital Engagement Tools

Web-Based Presentation Software

Recording Platforms

Video Sharing and Submission Platform

Digital Engagement Tools

Tools
Tech Tutorials

For years, we have debated the merits of teaching public speaking online. The question usually focused on aspects of audience and immediacy, and the answer was frequently to request that students have live audiences, visible on their, unedited, recorded speeches. But now many of us find ourselves teaching fully synchronous remote courses, which presents a range of new concerns for online public speaking, such as live but absent audiences, different nonverbal demands, technical considerations and "production" concerns, offline applicability of the student experience, class size, and instructional limits of faculty’s technical abilities

Tips

The most successful eLearning courses are those that are all-encompassing and allow learners to become fully immersed in the learning process by utilizing a variety of multimedia elements. 

Section content developed based on resources provided through

USMx LDT300xInstructional Design: Digital Media, New Tools and Technology

Three principles of  Universal Design for Learning offer useful guidelines and ideas for creating digital content for your courses. When designing, you should consider multiple means of:

Action: create multiple pathways for learners to engage with materials 

Representation: provide information in multiple formats for learners — audio, video, interactive text so learners can access content in a manner they like based on their learning style and strengths. 

Engagement: infuse multiple ways to motivate learners, such as providing voice and choice — voice in in what and how content is studied, and choice in approach to demonstrating understanding of new knowledge, skills, & abilities.

Visual and Graphic Design

The following sites provide insights to Visual Design Theory that can support not only digital text used in online and blended course sites, but also printed text handouts, and digital text for slides 

Video Usage

Whether it’s presentations, collaboration, lectures, or soft skills assessment, video can help keep learners engaged and entertained throughout their online courses. Video can help you to clearly explain concepts and the relationships between them to your learners by showing them how everything fits together. Video is just one tool of many that can be integrated into any course to facilitate discussions, lectures, or activities.

 

The following resources provide insights to effective video use in education, particularly for digital learning.

Ready to create video? Check out these EdTech resources!

And don't forget about the U.S. Laws for Video Accessibility: ADA, Section 508, CVAA, and FCC Mandates because improved accessibility helps everyone:

Audio Usage

Audio learning adds so many important elements to the overall learning experience and use of digital media tools. In many cases, to use audio in eLearning helps your learners to not only acquire the content more efficiently but to relate more effectively to the information too, so that they can store it for later use. 

The purpose of using background audio is to create a sense of immersion and evoke a certain emotion. 

Audio narrations can help to increase comprehension and knowledge retention, particularly when you use it to explain complicated graphics or concepts. 

A podcast is a digital media recording distributed via the Internet that is usually delivered in an episodic format.

Recommended Podcasts for Learning

  • NPR: National Public Radio has an entire section of education podcasts that highlight current education news and events that happen around the world.

  • The State of Tech: These podcasts focus on education technology in the state of Ohio, but the podcasts can benefit any educator. Topics include new software, platforms, and innovative ideas for tech in the classroom.

  • Smart People Podcast: Picking smart people’s “oversized brains” is what this podcast is all about. They interview people from various industries to bring their listeners episodes that satisfy those of us with insatiable curiosity.

There are also several free tools you can use to create your own podcast - which you can develop and share through your LMS (ex., Blackboard). 

Social Media

Social media tools and principles can be integrated into eLearning to transform an isolated environment into an online community where people meet, exchange information, collaborate, and communicate using web-based networking tools. Some ways to harness this power:

  • Utilize discussion boards through your LMS (ie, Blackboard)

  • Create a Google Hangout or Twitter hashtag for your class.

Mobile Learning

More and more learners are using their mobile phones and tablets to get information when and where they need it. When setting up online materials and spaces, keep mobile accessibility in mind.

  • Use your school's LMS to host your online course content - it will automatically adapt to desktop or mobile devices.

  • If using independent/commercial hosting sites, keep layout simple - and check both desktop and mobile views if possible.

  • Learn more about Mobile Accessibility

Implementing Digital Media & Technology in Learning Strategies

These readings address additional implementation strategies and technologies to enhance your learning design and development projects.

Digital Design
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