What is the minimum software/equipment you would recommend for a person to start developing an online class, in particular, if they wanted to post some lectures?
What type of software and license agreements does the University or Distance Ed have that would help in creating online courses?
The minimum would be a computer with proper browser configuration, stable internet connection (broadband or better is recommended) and a headset/microphone. While there are some helpful tools available to faculty to make this process easier, the previously mentioned software and equipment would suffice.
Our department also has experience with and can provide limited support with the use of the following free open-source tools:
- Desire2Learn/ CourseDen (D2L) is provided as the main Learning Management System for the University.
- Camtasia Relay - Relay is a version of Camtasia's screen recorder and encoder; it runs on a server and can encode in multiple formats and publish to multiple sites automatically via pre-defined profiles. However, Camtasia Studio would still be needed if the user wanted to edit the material before posting to the web.
- Camtasia - This application allows for users to record screen-captures from a computer, with accompanying narration if desired, edit the records, and encode them in multiple delivery formats. The College of Ed and the College of Business have purchased licenses for their keyserver, so there are a select number of licenses which can be shared amongst the labs and/or users desktops within their colleges.
- Blackboard Collaborate Tools - There is a campus-wide license for the following Blackboard Collaborate Tools:
- Live and recorded, two-way audio and/or video presentation application; it allows for application sharing, on-the-fly assessments and surveys, instant messaging, texting, emoticons, mark-ups via an integrated whiteboard, and has a phone-bridge in case participants need to call in via a regular phone line.
- Blackboard Collaborate and Wimba Classroom- Live and recorded, two-way audio and/or video presentation application; it allows for application sharing, on-the-fly assessments and surveys, instant messaging, texting, emoticons, mark-ups via an integrated whiteboard, and has a phone-bridge in case participants need to call in via a regular phone line.
- Wimba Voice Authoring – Record up to a 20 minute audio narrative or feedback. You can include this in a CourseDen Learning Module or Download and attach it to a Mail message.
- Wimba Voice Board – Just like the Discussion Board, except both you and the students can record your audio answers instead of having to type. Some instructors have set up private Voice Boards for each student, in order to provide individual feedback.
- Wimba Voice Email –Similar to Voice Authoring except that it automatically sends the message to the student's EXTERNAL email account.
- Wimba PresentationVoice – Allows you to annotate web pages with audio.
- Wimba Podcaster – Similar to Voice Board but can only be arranged by date (chronologically), however this option allows for users to subscribe and download the audio to their computer, Mp3 player, etc.
- Blackboard Collaborate IM - Allows instructors, students and staff to collaborate outside the learning management system in an Instant Messaging environment. The software automatically populates the students enrollments per semester from the learning management system. This tool can be utilized for office hours, teamwork, across campus messaging, whiteboard, and voice/video conferencing.
- Podcasting Server - allows faculty an area to house and share podcasts (Broadcasts for ipod)
- Helix Server - Helix Media Server streams live and on-demand media content with professional-scale reliability.
- Turnitin - UWG|Online and eCore offer their faculty Turnitin which provides GradeMark, PeerMark and OriginalityCheck for their online courses.
- Respondus Test Creator & Studymate - Respondus Test Creator is a program that allows users to create tests that can be imported into CourseDen (D2L). Studymate allows users to create study items, including flash cards, crosswords, etc.
- Atomic Learning - Atomic Learning provides a plethora of software training and support resources pertinent to teaching online at undergraduate and graduate levels.
- Smartthinking - Used for online tutoring, paper review, writing assistance, and general subject help for online West Georgia students.
- Wikispaces - Wikispaces are websites that allow you to quickly create a number of inter-linked pages by way of simple text editors.
- iTunes U - iTunes U is a simple and efficient way to share a variety of educational media including lectures, language lessons, audiobooks, etc.
- CoursEval Server - This software allows for the automation of faculty and course evaluations.
- ITS' Classroom Support & Multimedia Services can assist instructors on a project-by-project basis, including editing and producing audio and video in multiple formats. They use a variety of software, depending on the project's needs and available resources, including Adobe Creative Suite & Pinnacle, iMovie, GarageBand, SoundForge, and Adobe Soundbooth.
- ITS provides myUWG Course Tools, campus email, assistance with online surveys, web space, and support for faculty and students posting web pages.
- Google Apps
- Google Drive - Collaborative cloud based sharing
- Google Docs - Google Docs are part of Google Drive and allow collaborative editing of documents, spreadsheets, presentations, etc.
- Google Forms - Part of Google Docs; allows users to quickly create and post an online form or survey online, for which the results are automatically collected in a Google Doc spreadsheet (can be downloaded into a .csv file for easy import into SPSS or other statistical analysis package)
- YouTube - Repository for sharable video content
- Audacity - Free audio editor
- RSS feed creator - Allows instructor to include an RSS feed of their choice, within their CourseDen course
updated May 29, 2014, JAL