Zooming

Since we launched Zoom as a campus platform on March 13, 2020, there have been 36,439 meetings conducted by our community. And 3 reports of ZoomBombing (so far). There may have been others, but we have only 3 reported cases at this time1. We have spent much time and effort adjusting the configuration of our campus Zoom account to address security and privacy concerns. Default settings for meetings have been modified, making it more difficult (if not impossible) for intruders to barge into a meeting/class and ZoomBomb it. Read More
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Online Exam Proctoring

I drafted this as a briefing doc to help with decision making related to how we handle online exams for courses that are now being conducted remotely as a result COVID-19. It was circulated for feedback, so it may be useful to have a copy for reference here. I wrote it based on information gathered from the various vendors' websites, and from conversations with colleagues. The doc was intended to give a high level overview of online exam proctoring software without delving into technical aspects. Read More
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Zoom Online Exam Proctoring Demo

We’ve been getting questions from instructors who would like to use Zoom to conduct online exam proctoring, for up to 800 students. I mean. Golly. That’s just not a great idea. Aside from the philosophical issues involved with using a videoconferencing tool to surveil students during an exam, there are technical issues. How would 800 streams of video be recorded? How would that be viewed? Also. The video feed isn’t necessary trustworthy. Read More
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How to Turn Off Attention Tracking in Zoom Campus Accounts

An article by Mehreen Kasana on Input Magazine made the rounds, talking about the “attention tracking” feature in Zoom, and how creepy and invasive it is. It is. But it can also be disabled for any account - and if disabled for a campus account, it can also be locked out for all users. — "Whether you have Zoom account or not," the company's privacy page states, "we may collect Personal Data from or about you when you use or otherwise interact with our Products. Read More
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On preparing a university for a COVID rapid shift to online teaching

With the COVID pandemic still picking up steam in North America, all universities had to make a rapid shift to online teaching as campuses were closed. Mine was no different. We’d been talking about possible pandemic planning since mid-february, but at the time it was all speculative and seemingly so far in the future. Things started to get real around March 11, 2020. There were local cases of COVID (although all travel-related), and it was time to start moving classes online - or cancel the semester outright. Read More
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Intro to Curriculum Links

One of the major projects our team1 has been working on for the last couple of years is the University of Calgary’s Curriculum Links application. From the project website overview: It’s an application that supports curriculum design and review - an entire program can be designed before it’s submitted to a faculty for approval, allowing for pre-flight testing of the program. Do all of the claimed program-level outcomes get incorporated appropriately? Read More
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Combining Section Feeds and Filtering the Homepage in Hugo

I’ve been setting up my website, and had things working pretty much exactly how I want them. But, I’d been struggling with how to properly separate content on the website while combining content in the main site feed. The main reason is to be able to have things like /reflections to separate week-in-review reflection posts without overwhelming the homepage with weekly posts that would make all other content that I post on less than a weekly cadence be lost in the noise. Read More
hugo  rss  blog 

Joining the TRU Digital Detox program

Joining the TRU Digital Detox program
I’m following Brian’s lead, and signing up for the TRU Digital Detox program that will run throughout January 2020. I’m not sure my health plan covers the cost of a full rehab, so this will hopefully serve to help nudge me toward thinking about my relationship with online technologies. Brenna Clarke Gray has been setting up some really interesting work in her new role at TRU (and, really, the whole TRU Open Learning team is doing some seriously awesome work). Read More

Moving beyond the LMS as platform of content consumption

Moving beyond the LMS as platform of content consumption
I’ve had the opportunity to work with leaders from various faculties, to develop work plans for developing communication/support, inventory, and procedures that are involved in providing and integrating learning technologies into courses. There are a few themes that keep coming up (paraphrased): we need to be led by pedagogy, not technology our tools shape what we do with them campus platforms are designed for the institution, not the people within our processes for requesting/implementing new tools can be prohibitive and stifling Looking at Brightspace, our campus LMS1 is automatically available for use by every course, in every faculty. Read More
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