American Association of University Supervisors, Coordinators, and Directors of Language Programs
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This is such a great use of this forum, thanks Carl!
Penn State told us *yesterday* to be prepared to deliver classes online starting on Monday with a potential return date to in-class instruction of April 4th. We were told to hold synchronous class periods, using Zoom on Canvas. This of course has many issues, not the least of which being the fact that PSU seems to be taking for granted that students will have unfettered access. BUT they have said to "be flexible" (?)
We have come up with a plan for FR 1-2-3: class will be a combo of Voicethread presentations that we are taking turns creating, threaded discussions, Zoom break-outs, and online assessments. Not ideal but manageable.
Thanks for starting this forum. We have been told "prepare in case" all week but got word last night that spring break is extended until Wed and then we are to remote teach until at least April 6. I am working on plans for the language program right now and am in particular trying to rethink our assessments (group projects and exams). So far the tech help has all been of the "use zoom" variety.
Thank you, Carl, for setting up this forum and for the earlier link. (We are on break this week at U.Va. and just got the word yesterday that classes are suspended for the first three days of next week, then resume next Thursday online.) Quite a challenge, but in languages, we're fortunately already comfortable using plenty of online resources in our in-person classes. We have Zoom embedded as a tool in Collab, our LMS. Most of us have used Zoom, but haven't done so for teaching purposes until now. Lots of training in Zoom features being offered at the last minute as we scramble to adapt our courses and to guide our TAs. I'll post more info from our end as available. I look forward to learning what others are doing and what the biggest obstacles turn out to be.
Thanks for getting this discussion going, Carl. Much appreciated.
Emory just added another week to its current spring break and is cancelling all "residential learning" for the time being, moving all courses online. The IT folks (sadly, not the LPDs) have been working on getting faculty ready and have prepared several video tutorials for using Zoom, Canvas, and Studio. While they just cover the basics, they might be helpful to some. More info at http://college.emory.edu/oisp/remoteteaching/index.html
At the University at Buffalo, SUNY we were told yesterday that we will go to online teaching at the end of our 1-week Spring Break (March 23) for the rest of the semester. Our Center for Educational Innovation is creating multiple last minute sessions to train faculty to use Panopto (screen capture and video creation) and WebEx starting today and throughout the break week. We use Blackboard so we will be integrating Panopto videos within Blackboard. Our problem has been that our language TAs and adjuncts are not considered "faculty" so they did not have permission to use Panopto. After a week of trying, we finally got notification that our CIO has to approve our request to have our FL instructors get access to Panopto and try to get training during their Spring Break.
The other issue for us right now is how to push assessments. Our university uses Respondus 4.0 in conjunction with Blackboard but it only works on PCs. Most of our instructors, myself included, have Macs.
All the language chairs and some language coordinators from across campus met this afternoon to work together through this new situation and the question had been posted as to what other coordinators in similar situations are doing. I would love to hear more.
I oversee French, Spanish and Italian with a total of 31 TAs and adjuncts, some of whom are excellent, others good with technology and then the ones who cannot be near the word. We also have 2 instructors of Native American languages who live in tribal reservations with minimal to non-existent internet access. What are others doing?
UT-Austin just announced an extended two-week Spring Break to give our faculty more time to get ready for online teaching. We will resume again on March 30th. I also just learned that UT-Austin has struck a deal with Zoom to embed Zoom technology into our campus LMS (Canvas). Some F2F courses such as labs will remain although with special "distancing" measures to be taken. The administration is also giving crash courses in Zoom to the faculty at large. These workshops are being conducted by foreign language profs (Way to go, LPDs!). I am supremely proud of our FL faculty whose expertise is being recognized in a very real way on our campus. This crisis is an opportunity for all of us to demonstrate our expertise in online learning and to help faculty members who have less experience teaching with tech. Good luck everyone.
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