Viewing by month: February 2012

Feb 27 2012

Flipped Classrooms: Lectures and Homework Trade Places

Trending meme alert! Trending meme alert!

What is one of the latest trending topics in (higher) education? "Flipped Classrooms." I'd tell you what that means, but this web page does such an interesting job of showing it graphically (and using pictures of dogs no less):

Additionally, the Educause Learning Initiative's "7 Things You Should Know About" series tends to be on top of these trends, and sure enough, just this month they released a version on flipped classrooms. Be sure to open the PDF link to read the whole article:

"The value of a flipped class is in the repurposing of class time into a workshop where students can inquire about lecture content, test their skills in applying knowledge, and interact with one another in hands-on activities."

Further references:

The Flipped Class Manifest
5 Best Practices for Flipped Classrooms ("It is a great first step in reframing the role of the teacher in the classroom.")

But that's just an introduction. Instructors, want to put theory into practice and speak to someone about flipping your course, engaging students in new ways, or increasing levels of engagement? Contact the JHSPH Instructional Design Team for a consultation. Free while supplies last! :)



Posted by Clark Shah-Nelson at 3:57 PM - Categories: Teaching Tips | General | Online Courses | OpenCourseWare | Distance Learning

Feb 26 2012

Problems with CoursePlus on Sunday, February 26

Update: Sunday, February 26, 2012, 1:06PM

CoursePlus is back up and running again.

It turns out that sometime during this weekend's routine maintenance by Information Systems, the master account information that we use to connect to our databases got out of sync on the CoursePlus database. It took the database team a while to dig down into the database cluster and find this very specific problem, but once they did, they were able to fix the sync issue and make it so that CoursePlus could access its databases again.

We know how very frustrating any downtime on CoursePlus can be to students and faculty at the School. Senior deans were kept in the loop about the site downtime, and are aware of the nature and length of the problem.  CoursePlus normally has quite good uptime, and this extended, unplanned outage is an anomaly. That doesn't get back the time you may have lost while planning on using CoursePlus this weekend, however, and for that we sincerely apologize.


Original post:

The CoursePlus site is currently experiencing problems and is showing an error page when you try to access any page within CoursePlus. After routine maintenance on the network this weekend, the site is having problems connecting to the database servers. JHSPH Information Systems is aware of the problem and is working with the CTLT team to try to resolve it as soon as possible.

We will make updates to this post as soon as we have any more information to share.



Posted by Brian Klaas at 9:04 AM - Categories: CoursePlus

Feb 21 2012

Mid-Term Updates to the Online Course System

The Web Developer team in the Center for Teaching and Learning with Technology continually updates the online course system with new features, improvements to existing features, and bug fixes. Since the start of the third term, the following changes and additions have been made:

  • Wikis: The file and link management window has been redesigned to make the core actions of inserting a file or a link into a wiki page simpler and clearer.
  • BBS Reports: The postings on the individual student BBS contribution report are now sorted by posting date, rather than the category/topic in which the post appeared.
  • BBS Reports: The date on which a student last posted in the course BBS is now displayed. If it's been more than a week since the course started and more than a week since the student last posted to the course BBS, the last post date is displayed in red. This can be useful for quickly identifying students who may not be contributing to the course.
  • Drop Box: If there are multiple Drop Boxes due at the exact same date and time, they are now displayed alphabetically, instead of by database ID order. 
  • Quiz Generator: The answer to the question is now displayed along with the question text on the "Grade all responses to a single question" page.
  • Quiz Generator: You can now choose to display the name of each student on the "Grade all answers to a single question" page.
  • LiveTalk Report: Students who have not attended any LiveTalks or watched any archives are flagged on the LiveTalk attendance report in red. Students who have only attended or watched the archive of one LiveTalk when there is more than one LiveTalk in the course are flagged on the LiveTalk attendance report in yellow. This makes it easier to see students who may not be participating in the course.
  • Proctor Information: Proctor City, State and ZIP code information has been split apart into separate columns on the Excel file of all proctors for students in the class. 

Posted by Brian Klaas at 9:43 AM - Categories: Online Courses | Course Tools

Feb 10 2012

New Web Event Posted

Our Center has posted a new web event for your review:

Accelerating Global Vaccine Access: Are We Any Better at it Now Than We Were 10 Years Ago? presented by Dr. Orin S. Levine affiliated with the School's Department of Internation Health. This event was presented and recorded live on January 24, 2012.

To view the event, visit our Web Event site at

Posted by Kathy Gresh at 4:43 PM - Categories: Web Events

Feb 10 2012

Social Media in Higher Education: Mobile Devices

This is the final post in a three-part series on the use of social media tools in higher education. This post addresses a study published in the Spring of 2010 by Perkins and Saltsman who conducted research on the use of mobile devices as an instructional tool in academic settings.


Posted by Rick Ivy at 10:11 AM - Categories: General | Tech Tools

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