extreme blackboard makeover

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  • 1. Fall eLearning Institute
    Robert Gibson, Ed.D.

2. Overview
Workshop Outcomes
Participants will
Understandbasics of course color theory (10 min)
Understand application of visual enhancements (10 min)
Understand concepts of user navigation (15 min)
Understand legibility issues associated with course design (10 min)
Understand menu design and content hierarchy (15 min)
Understand principals of content scaffolding (10 min)
Understand when to use course tools and when to turn them off (15 min)
Understand course content options (10 min)
Understand techniques for managing user interaction (10 min)
Understand how to enhance the course with multimedia elements (15 min)
3. Before and After
4. Before and After
5. Before and After
6. Before and After
7. Before and After
8. Exemplary Courses
Award Winning Exemplary Courses
Freshman Composition
Nursing Health Assessment
Olelo Hawaii Ku WahiNoho
Gender and Society
Communication Production Technology
9. Top Ten ThingsFaculty Should Know
All faculty need to use [Bb]; only a few instructors know how to use all features
Be organized: keep information current
Use the grade book; students know where they stand and it motivates them to do better
Use calendar for all class activities and post assignment due dates
Keep us informed: use message of the day or an alert that flags you when new information is posted
Post exam reviews & lecture outlines; use voice-over presentations; makes studying much easier
10. Top Ten ThingsFaculty Should Know
Some articles in pdf format take too long to download; use alternative file format
Standardize where material is posted: every instructor does it differently and it is hard to find some material
Publish and un-publish modules as the class progresses; un-clutter the posted modules
Change the opening page routinely to add variety and post interesting web links to other related information
11. Color Theory
Tip 1: Subtle colors are better than bright colors within the course, unless the bright colors are used for a specific purpose
Tip 2: Adhere to western color conventions
Red=risk or stop
Green=go or proceed; environmental
Blue=intellectual
Purple= regal
Yellow=caution or cheerful
Tip 3: Use good contrast between menu colors and text
Avoid complementary colors (R & G; O & B; Y & P)
Avoid colors of similar contrast
See: User Interface Design and Evaluation
Tip 4: Remember that many males are color blind
Tip 5: Coordinate banner and menu colors if possible
12. Visual Enhancements
Enhance your course with a banner
Free course banner generators
Enhance your course with some free images
12 best places to find free images for your course
13. Legibility
Tip 1: Dark text on a light background is easiest to read
Tip 2: Sans serif is easier to read than serif
Tip 3: 12 point text or larger - always
Tip 4: Never use more than 3 fonts or 3 typefaces
Tip 5: Use colored fonts sparingly. If fonts are color-coded for a reason, explain the codification schema and stay consistent
14. Menu Navigation
Navigation options
Customizing your Blackboard Menu Creating a Discipline-Specific Blackboard Template
Buttons vs. Text menus. Which is better?
Blackboards hierarchical menu vs. simplified menu
What course options should be on your menu?
What order should menu items appear?
Consider multi-language options
15. Content Hierarchy
Tip 1: Label folders and files using a consistent taxonomy
Tip 2: Employ content nesting strategies to organize information
Tip 3: Provide availability dates where appropriate
Tip 4: Rotate content, keeping newest material toward the top
Tip 5: Group similar materials and exercises together into single folders
Tip 6: Hide content until ready
16. Scaffold Content
Scaffolding
Based on theoretical constructs developed by Vygotsky and his concept of zones of proximal development. Also called active engagement vs. passive consumption
Employing Vygotskys theory,content and activities should build on one another in meaningful patterns
Blackboard activities should be released to students selectively. Once mastery has been achieved in one unit, the instructor releases content that builds on the first set of content. Use adaptive release or selectively released content strategies
17. Course Tools
Tip 1: Turn off non-used tools
Tip 2: Add the following content regardless of the format:
Faculty biographical sketch and complete contact information
Syllabus including course objectives
Link to required textbooks or journal articles
Tip 3: Add small thumbnails of your texts
18. Course Content
Uploading in native files is fine IF all students have the requisite software
Make files available in two or more optional formats