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We invite you to register now  (FREE) and share your expertise with other faculty and staff members at our Annual  Academic Technology Learning Conference.  Discover new ways to use technology in your classes and engage students.   (http://tlcconference2014.sched.org/ )

Prize Drawings:

1st keynote  Kindle FIRE HD eBook from Blackboard                              Guest Speaker HD webcam by Cisco

2nd keynote Executive Office Chair by Computer Comforts                Gift cards each session

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Wednesday, April 2
 

1:00pm

Keynote Speaker - "NASA’s Digital Learning Network:The Benefits of Interactive Distance Learning Technology"

NASA’s Digital Learning Network (DLN) is a comprehensive project that delivers interactive instruction in support of long-term retention of knowledge to formal and informal education communities in all fifty states and the U.S. territories. NASA Education’s core purpose is to inspire, engage, educate and employ the next generation of explorers and innovators. The DLN supports this purpose by providing free, live video-conference and web-based connections with NASA engineers, scientists and education specialists to students and educators around the nation. Utilizing a variety of distance learning technologies, the DLN reaches on average 125,000 educators and students per year.  The DLN is actively improved by using academic research in order to grow through best practices.   Researchers have utilized the DLN's resources and shared their results with the project informing changes that have benefited not only NASA, but the educators and students whom they serve.

This presentation will be fifty minutes in length, with a twenty minute presentation, fifteen minute demonstration, and fifteen minute question & answer session.


Speakers
MH

Michael Hare

NASA Digital Learning Network Specialist, NASA
NASA Digital Learning Network Specialist, Johnson Space Center/NASA Digital Learning Network
PM

Patricia Moore

NASA Digital Learning Network Specialist, NASA
NASA Digital Learning Network Specialist, Johnson Space Center/NASA Digital Learning Network


Wednesday April 2, 2014 1:00pm - 1:50pm
Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Auditorium

2:05pm

Using Technology to Improve Success in General Biology
Greg Dement, Phyllis Griffard, Connie Kang, and Rachna Sadana are a subset subset of the biology faculty who are collaborating in a Community of Practice as part of the Comprehensive Student Success Program (CSSP) grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. Their goal has been to not only improve the ABC pass rate in the gateway biology courses - thus improving retention in the STEM majors, but also improve engagement in the classroom and deepen learning. During the summer of 2013, their Community of Practice developed robust, challenging modules for Team-Based Learning (TBL) that were implemented successfully following fall in all sections of Biology 1301 and are now the model for both Biology 1301 and 1302. A feature of TBL is the readiness assurance process that “flips” the background learning from the lecture hall to preparing before class. Now class time is used for team engagement in rich applications of this background. These curricular innovations have made use of several technologies: Blackboard-based readiness assurance tasks and scratch-off (IF-AT) cards for team quizzes, and formative in-class assessment using the cloud-based Learning Catalytic application on Nook devices.

This group will share their experiences in a 30-minute hands-on panel presentation, discussing how they collaborated to develop the modules, use these technologies in the classroom, and why they think they are working.

Moderators
avatar for Jacqueline Sack

Jacqueline Sack

TLC Conference Committee Member, UHD, Dept. of Urban Education
Mathematics Educator

Speakers
GD

Gregory Dement

Director of the Comprehensive Student Success Program, Department of Natural Sciences, University of Houston-Downtown
Greg Dement is Director of the Comprehensive Student Success Program grant and Natural Sciences Learning Strategies Instructor in the College of Sciences and Technology.  He plans and facilitates faculty, student, and instructional development activities related to gateway courses... Read More →
PG

Phyllis Griffard

Lecturer, UHD
Phyllis Griffard is a Lecturer in Biology in the Department of Natural Sciences. She teaches freshman lecture and lab courses including the research-based “phage-hunter” labs. Phyllis’ research has addressed how students develop representational competence and how research exposure... Read More →
CK

Connie Kang

Lecturer, Department of Natural Sciences, University of Houston-Downtown
Connie Kang is a Lecturer in the Department of Natural Sciences and teaches upper level and gateway biology courses including first-semester general biology. She is also a practitioner of Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL) and a co-developer and practitioner of Team-Based Learning... Read More →
RS

Rachna Sadana

Assistant Professor, Department of Natural Sciences, University of Houston-Downtown
Rachna Sadana is an Assistant Professor of Biology and Biochemistry in the Department of Natural Sciences. She teaches a variety of lower and upper level biology courses. Her research work focuses on investigating analogues of natural compounds for their anti-cancer properties.


Wednesday April 2, 2014 2:05pm - 2:55pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

2:05pm

Flip Your Course Using the Tools within Blackboard Learn to Meet the Needs of 21st Century University Students

Dr. John R. Kelly, Assistant Professor in the Urban Education Department at the University of Houston Downtown, will introduce his version of a flipped classroom and describe how to combined universal design/differentiated instructional concepts with the technology within Blackboard Learn to build 21st century classrooms for online, hybrid, and F2F courses. Dr. Kelly will provide conference participants ideas on ‘how to’ transition the traditional professor directed survey course (lectures and slides) and flip-it into a high-impact technology driven, student-centered/directed, interactive, and collaborative course that digital natives (students) are demanding. Course content is featured in modules and presented by means of Blackboard tools such as blogs, web quests, wikis,  games, surveys, discussions, journals, twitter, mashups, online quizzes, and webinars throughout the semester. Having students work independently using content within Blackboard to initiate instruction on new topics prior to class allows for opportunities to offer students meaningful real world experiences using evidenced based instructional methods that engage students’ critical thinking – service learning, project based learning, and team-based learning. The models structured approach makes it easy for students to navigate the course and frees up time to provide immediate individual feedback that is responsive to each student’s needs, which Dr. Kelly believe has had a major impact on students’ interest, scholarship, and course evaluation. The benefits of this model of instruction for students and the professor will be discussed.


Speakers
avatar for John R. Kelly

John R. Kelly

Assistant Professor, Urban Education Department, University of Houston-Downtown
Dr. Kelly is an Assistant Professor in the Urban Education Department at the University of Houston-Downtown.  Dr. Kelly is known for teaching high impact education courses in the Department of Urban Education. Collaboration with students and the Blackboard Learn staff at UHD has... Read More →


Wednesday April 2, 2014 2:05pm - 2:55pm
White Oak Room

2:05pm

No More Gray Hair: Using Technology and Project Planning to Minimize the Burden of Assessment Work
We’ve all been there – It’s time to write the next academic assessment report. The data collected for the last cycle is either MIA or housed on Professor Smith’s computer…which just died. Rubrics and survey templates are nowhere to be found and you just realized that the alumni survey was never done. Roll in the startup of a new academic year and tempers are understandably short.

It’s time to break the cycle.  This workshop is a tour of strategies, techniques and technologies that can help faculty quickly organize, plan and collaborate to complete quality program assessment tasks in record time.

Speakers
avatar for Lea Campbell

Lea Campbell

Director of Academic Assessment, University of Houston-Downtown
Lea Campbell is the Director of Academic Assessment at University of Houston-Downtown and teaches as an adjunct in UHD’s undergraduate math program.  Prior to coming to Houston, she served as the Associate Vice Chancellor of Developmental Education at the City Colleges of Chicago... Read More →


Wednesday April 2, 2014 2:05pm - 2:55pm
Houston Room

3:10pm

The Integration of Online Instruction and Local Leadership in UHD’s Non-Profit Management Program

Non-profit CEOs and UHD Master of Arts in Nonprofit Management adjunct professors Brian Greene and Dr. Robert Sanborn are at the forefront of integrating local leaders and online instruction. A weekly live-streaming interview with local non-profit CEOs made interactive though Blackboard and twitter have allowed these courses to engage students in real ways, in real time. Students in these courses share contacts with their professors who bring in local non-profit leaders for intimate discussions surrounding concepts covered in the course and driven by social media interaction via students. Allowing students to interact and discuss ideas with local leaders in their industry provides for a direct link to the community they are poised to collaborate with professionally. Join Dr. Sanborn, Brian Greene, David Branham Ph.D., Master of Arts in Non-Profit Management students, and TTLC Staff for a panel discussion about the process, implementation, and experiences in guiding these courses from the community into UHD’s nonprofit management program.



Wednesday April 2, 2014 3:10pm - 4:00pm
Houston Room

3:10pm

Digital Communication
Colleges today are supposed to give graduates the “immediate skills” they need to launch their professional careers, and they now need more digital communication skills and need to understand why they are needed (Young, 2009, p.9). From the employer’s perspective, graduates with skills such as effective digital communication contributes to aligning stakeholders–employees, customers, communities, vendors, etc., therefore, allowing the business to operate at peak performance. Given the changing workplace in terms of factors influencing business communications within organizations, e.g. social networking technologies, social media and workforce diversity, there is a need for academicians and industry representatives to collaborate in preparing business majors for professional careers. Supporting the aforementioned in collaboration with a variety of organizations, course applications for business communication were designed that integrate social networking technology. The intent of these applications is to help students learn professional expectations of digital communication by providing opportunities to practice “skills” applicable for use in the workplace.

Although most students practice digital communication via social networking sites for personal social interactions, they often cannot adapt and or transfer skills required in academic or professional contexts. For instance, most students use writing styles and language during these social exchanges that may not be suitable in business settings. Subsequently, students must rethink and learn the most effective, best practices from industry, to use these tools.

One practice adapted from industry to simulate internal digital communication is the use of discussion boards. Discussion boards are used by organizations for internal communications, advertising products, conducting customer service surveys and other practices. By adapting discussion boards for use in academic settings, students can develop digital communication skills and practice writing styles and language suited for the workplace in a familiar environment. Mindful of said, I use a variety of mini lessons to create topical interest that build on previous knowledge while extending critical thinking skills for broader understanding of expected professional performance. This gives students an opportunity to analyze the situation and define the purpose carefully before writing/posting a message to the discussion board.  This presentation will share findings from discussion board applications used to align and enhance delivery of course content and engage students in the learning process.

Speakers
CN

Chynette Nealy

Associate Professor, College of Business, University of Houston-Downtown
Chynette Nealy is an associate professor of business administration at the University of Houston Downtown. In her work, she is directly concerned with teaching and researching skills that can be applied to bridging the gap between theory and practice.


Wednesday April 2, 2014 3:10pm - 4:00pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

3:10pm

Enhancement of Tutoring Services and Student Retention using TutorTrac
Director of the Academic Support Center, Dr. Isidro Grau, will discuss implementation and use of TutorTrac software in the Academic Support Center.

TutorTrac, a product of the RedRock software corporation, is a complete management software system for academic tutoring centers. In fall 2013, TutorTrac was installed for use in the UHD Academic Support Center, which provides tutoring in the areas of writing, reading, math, and statistics. TutorTrac is a fully web-based program that retrieves current class information from Banner, so students’ names and course registrations are readily available. This assists the Academic Support Center staff to determine exactly who attends tutoring sessions in support of specific courses and/or course sections. In addition, TutorTrac helps eliminate student name confusion, misspelled names, and inaccurate course information. Having up to date information allows Academic Support Center staff to select the classes students are receiving tutoring in as well as review tutor appointments that are initiated by the Sage Early Alert System.

TutorTrac has enhanced both how the Academic Support Center reports utilization of student tutoring services and analysis of student retention in targeted barrier courses. In addition, TutorTrac is a unified information system, which allows for secure student data sharing between the Advising & Mentoring Dept, Sage Early Alert System, Participating Academic Deans, Chairs, and Faculty, the Dept of Institutional Effectiveness, and Academic Support Center Staff.

Speakers
IG

Isidro Grau

Director, Academic Support Center, University of Houston-Downtown
Isidro Grau has been a University of Houston Downtown professional staff member since 1996 and is currently the Director of the Academic Support Center. The Academic Support Center provides tutoring for students seeking to develop math, statistics, writing, and reading skills. Isidro’s... Read More →


Wednesday April 2, 2014 3:10pm - 4:00pm
White Oak Room

4:15pm

Faculty & Staff Meet & Greet - Free Wine/Beer and Cheese
Meet & Greet for Faculty and Staff. Refreshments to be served.


For Faculty and Staff only. 21 and over only please. 

Wednesday April 2, 2014 4:15pm - 6:00pm
Coffee House
 
Thursday, April 3
 

8:30am

Coffee & Light Refreshments
Thursday April 3, 2014 8:30am - 9:00am
Coffee House

9:00am

HISTORIA: Gaming the History of Civilization

Histrionix™ Learning Company provides interactive, game-based curriculum (and teacher training) to public, private and home schools that improves student achievement by engaging all learning styles, enhancing critical thinking skills and encouraging creative problem solving, which are the building blocks of thoughtful, twenty-first century students — and citizens.


Rick Brennan - the co founder & CEO of Histrionix and a UH alum - will discuss game based learning and its application to the social sciences by introducing his company’s curriculum aligned social studies simulation and strategy game called HISTORIA.

HISTORIA will be published by NYC based E Line Media and Alaska based Upper One Games - the first ever indigenous game company - and released for sale nationwide in the fall of 2014.

The fifty minute presentation will include a short history of Histrionix, an introduction to the tenets of game based learning twenty minute description and a first look at the new iteration of HISTORIA followed by fifteen minute question and answer session.

Presentation will be preceeded by a welcoming message from Ed Hugetz, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost of the University of Houston-Downtown.


Moderators
avatar for Jacqueline Sack

Jacqueline Sack

TLC Conference Committee Member, UHD, Dept. of Urban Education
Mathematics Educator

Speakers
avatar for Rick Brennan

Rick Brennan

Co-Founder / CEO, Histrionix Learning Company, LLC
As a veteran public school teacher with 13 years of classroom experience, Rick Brennan- the co-founder and CEO of Histrionix Learning Company - believes that learning should be meaningful, intuitive and fun! Rick and his business partner Jason Darnell - the co founder and President... Read More →


Thursday April 3, 2014 9:00am - 10:00am
Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Auditorium

10:15am

ExamSoft Worldwide
ExamSoft offers a market-leading exam management and analytics platform that delivers powerful, actionable data to assess learning outcomes and improve learning, engagement, and retention. Its software suite enables clients to efficiently and practically administer exams and analyze resulting data to improve curricular design, test design, and accreditation compliance. ExamSoft has served hundreds of prominent institutions for more than 15 years and has successfully administered millions of exams.

Speakers
avatar for Lisa Patterson

Lisa Patterson

Director of Sales, ExamSoft Worldwide, Inc.


Thursday April 3, 2014 10:15am - 10:55am
Houston Room

10:15am

Creating Web Based Equations for HTML Files

Join Erin Hodgess as she demonstrates MathJax and MathType to produce mathematical and scientific equations that can be displayed in any web browser. Discussion will involve how to best take advantage of these tools, especially in online courses. A live demonstration will be presented.


Speakers

Thursday April 3, 2014 10:15am - 10:55am
White Oak Room

11:00am

Lunch
Thursday April 3, 2014 11:00am - 12:30pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

12:30pm

Copyright Issues and Teaching Technology

UH General Counsel to speak on copyright issues in teaching technology.


Moderators
avatar for John Lane

John Lane

Director, Technology Learning Services, University of Houston-Downtown
Director, Technology Teaching Learning Center

Speakers

Thursday April 3, 2014 12:30pm - 1:20pm
Wilhelmina Cullen Robertson Auditorium

1:35pm

Blackboard Expert Challenge
Moderators
Speakers
MF

Manuel Fernandez

User Support and Training Specialist, University of Houston-Downtown
Manuel Fernandez (fernandezm@uhd.edu) is a User Support and Training Specialist in the TTLC and this is his second Technology Learning Conference. Manuel is an alumni of UHD.
WR

Will Robinson

Training and Support Specialist
avatar for Shon

Shon

Support and Training Specialist, University of Houston Downtown


Thursday April 3, 2014 1:35pm - 2:25pm
Houston Room

1:35pm

Experiences Using MOOCs

All industries have to cope with the disruption of the unfolding digital revolution, and education is no exception.

The presentation discusses these topics:

Experience of the authors taking and using some Massive Open Online Courses or MOOCs

The use of a MOOC as complement for a regular course is discussed

University credits for a MOOC course

   



Thursday April 3, 2014 1:35pm - 2:25pm
White Oak Room

1:35pm

Measuring Success: An Introduction to UHD’s Assessment Management Tool, TracDat
Assessment happens at all levels of the organization with student learning measured in both the academic and co-curricular areas. At UHD we follow an outcomes-based process that takes what most of us already do, and makes it systematic. Its purpose is to reflect on the end result of doing - - how well are we accomplishing that which we say we are? It incorporates Strategic and Action Planning. It is intended to inform decisions for improvement and resource re-allocation. It helps you link what you do to institutional strategic initiatives and performance indicators. It makes the purpose of our programs and services clear to students, faculty, parents and other constituents and promotes student responsibility for learning, as well as opportunities for collaboration (Bresciani, 2011).

TracDat is the tool we use at UHD to help us manage the data and report on our assessment activities in a meaningful, consistent, and transparent way. This presentation introduces the tool and the many ways it helps the assessment process to be more effective and efficient. This presentation is geared toward Co-Curricular units. Everyone is welcome.

Moderators
Speakers
AK

Angela Koponen

Dir. of Co-Curricular & Operations Assessment, UHD


Thursday April 3, 2014 1:35pm - 2:25pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

2:25pm

Break for Light Refreshment
Thursday April 3, 2014 2:25pm - 2:55pm
Coffee House

2:55pm

Campus Labs
You may be surprised to know that UHD partners with an organization that supports our institution for two seemingly disconnected processes – SACS accreditation and online Course Evaluations (through an ongoing pilot with the College of Business). Come learn how the two are connected and what some of the missing links are. Learn about Campus Labs (part of the Higher One family) and how the Campus Labs suite of products is helping neighboring campuses with assessment, retention, and student development initiatives, and helping our campus prepare for SACS and streamline the Course Evaluation process.

Speakers
JW

Jill Wright

Campus Relations, Campus Labs


Thursday April 3, 2014 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Houston Room

2:55pm

Get Smart with Your Smartphone

Smartphones are ubiquitous and easily accessible. Our presentation aims to show faculty and students how to take advantage of mobile applications in online education. "Get Smart with your Smartphone" will cover four apps for Android and iOS platforms including Google Hangouts and Scopia Mobile for video conferencing, and Google Drive and Evernote for document sharing. This presentation will showcase how these mobile apps can be easily used as free alternatives to online classroom/lecture capture tools like Blackboard Collaborate. We will provide a brief overview of each application and list suggestions on how to best use them from a faculty and student perspective. Streamline virtual classroom discussions and minimize the tech-related learning curve by using one of these simple video conferencing apps. Maximize organization and productivity by making class projects shareable and readily available in the cloud; no USB drive required.


Speakers
MF

Manuel Fernandez

User Support and Training Specialist, University of Houston-Downtown
Manuel Fernandez (fernandezm@uhd.edu) is a User Support and Training Specialist in the TTLC and this is his second Technology Learning Conference. Manuel is an alumni of UHD.
avatar for John Williams

John Williams

Technology Trainer II, University of Houston Downtown
I have been a tech trainer in the UHD TTLC for almost a year now. This is my first time presenting at the Technology Learning Conference. I come from a background of teaching technology to patrons in public libraries and have experience presenting at the Texas Library Association... Read More →


Thursday April 3, 2014 2:55pm - 3:45pm
White Oak Room

2:55pm

Using the Blackboard Collaborate to Provide a Virtual Classroom for the 21st Century Neo-millennial Student
The Virtual Classroom for the 21st Century - is a innovative collaborative instructional model that promotes multiple means of interaction among digital natives (students) and the professor. The new wave of digital natives, Neo-millennials, are in your class and driving today’s online movement. Their learning style demands to be part of the learning and teaching process – my model is co-designed by my students and me yet personalized to individual preferences. Today’s students are digital natives that see teachers as catalysts and facilitators that function seamlessly. They are fluent in multiple media and empowered by technology. Whether F2F, online, or hybrid, neo-millennials want active learning based on a collective seeking, sieving and synthesizing experience. They want expression through non-linear associations – webs of representations, as well as linear media, e.g., simulation as apposed to writing a paper. Unfortunately, typical online, hybrid and F2F courses offer students little opportunity for such collaborative high impact interactions. 

My presentation will focus on providing participants with ideas on ‘how to’ transform traditional courses, especially online, to a more 21st century high-impact technology driven but student-centered interactive practice that will grab the imagination of the neo-millennials, activate critical thinking, and promote collaboration among all students. By combining the virtual technology of Blackboard Collaborate and Group tools with other Blackboard features such as blogs, web quests, wikis, games, surveys, discussions, journals, twitter feed, mashups, videos, quizzlets, and webinars, educators will learn how to convert their courses into a virtual world where empirically based instruction is presented in real time and provides authentic experiences for all learners – service learning, problem based learning, team based learning, web quests, and web presentations. Benefits for students and educators will be discussed.

Moderators
Speakers
avatar for John R. Kelly

John R. Kelly

Assistant Professor, Urban Education Department, University of Houston-Downtown
Dr. Kelly is an Assistant Professor in the Urban Education Department at the University of Houston-Downtown.  Dr. Kelly is known for teaching high impact education courses in the Department of Urban Education. Collaboration with students and the Blackboard Learn staff at UHD has... Read More →


Thursday April 3, 2014 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

4:00pm

Blackboard Round Table Discussion
At UHD, the Blackboard learning management system provides a robust set of web-based communication and teaching tools that support online, hybrid and face-to-face courses.  During this roundtable discussion, faculty and students will share their experiences and ideas regarding Blackboard teaching activities that enhance student engagement in the learning process.  The role played by Blackboard and other online tools in connecting with contemporary students, as well as the opportunities this portends, also will be discussed.

Moderators
JA

Jeffrey Ahrendt

Assoc. Director, Technology Learning Services, University of Houston-Downtown

Thursday April 3, 2014 4:00pm - 4:50pm
Houston Room

4:00pm

Influence of Modern Software in the Curriculum of Structural Analysis and Design
The modern engineering practice is strongly based on software applications combined with the application of the theoretical concepts of engineering and other disciplines. This presentation discusses:

*Theoretical basis of modern software

*Necessity to introduce the use of software in the classroom

*Adaptation of the Program curriculum to the reality of modern engineering practice that use software as the main tool.


Thursday April 3, 2014 4:00pm - 4:50pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

4:00pm

Using Technology for International Student Collaborative Projects
How to use the internet to link courses in the US with those abroad, and have students work together on one project.  Professor Gillette is publishing an article on this topic, in the New England Journal of History.


Speakers
avatar for Aaron Gillette

Aaron Gillette

Associate Professor, History, University of Houston-Downtown
I am interested in the use of video clips from documentaries and primary sources, for use in the classroom and on Blackboard.


Thursday April 3, 2014 4:00pm - 4:50pm
White Oak Room