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Technology Pilots

The Instructional Design and Learning Technologies – IDLT – team are dedicated to offering solutions to problems that plague professors.  As such, the department devotes itself to reviewing and piloting various forms of technology.  In order to stay on the frontlines of development, the staff of IDLT are constantly reviewing different and new technologies and developing the best use cases for various systems.  With this commitment to the future of learning, we hope to develop an advanced infrastructure for students and professors.

We Need Your Help

You, the professor, are vital to our future development of systems.  We rely on professors to come to us with issues, future desires, and quirky use cases.  Each question that you ask helps direct us towards new technologies that can be integrated for the entire Bradley University campus.  This is a mutually beneficial relationship because it allows us to perform the exploration phase, pilot testing, and then hopefully, adoption for the Bradley campus while the professor focuses on education.  Furthermore, with your assistance, the IDLT team is able to develop documentation and use cases prior to full adoption which helps inform other professors who may have the same problem as the early-adopting professor.

Contact Us

If you are interested in sitting down and explaining what you need, please send an email to: Sakai@Fsmail.Bradley.Edu – a team member will respond shortly after we review the request.  Please, include a brief description of what you want to do, and if you know of any technology currently available that could address the issues at hand.

Ongoing, Previous, and Future Evaluations/Pilots

Below are a list of pilots that have been conducted recently.  Some have reports that are made available to the public.  Evaluations are ideas that are being explored and reviewed for viability.  Pilots are the second stage and are tested in the field with professors who are willing to explore the stability of the new technology.  To be a part of a pilot, please contact us at Sakai@FSmail.bradley.edu and mention you are willing to test new technologies.

Ongoing Pilots and Evaluations

Big Blue Button

This web conferencing software is in the final stages of its pilot.  The pilot is specific to adding live meeting software into Sakai.  This software integrates with Sakai and exists on the left hand navigation pane on the side of a course page.  This allows online courses the ability to meet virtually.  Through the pilot phase, other uses have been discovered.  Some of these include: the ability for a student to present a project, the ability to record student presentations for later grading, providing a live lecture to students online asynchronously, and even being able to record these lectures for later viewing.

YouSeeU Evaluation

This is a second web conferencing software pilot project.  YouSeeU is a juggernaut of technology and offers many use cases to a professor.  It also integrates into Sakai but through a different protocol.  The benefits of this software are in its vast catalog of asynchronous video features.  One promising use is the ability for the professor to self-record, ask questions and then have the system countdown.  Once the countdown is reached, the software automatically records students as they respond to the question.  Furthermore, this allows students and the professor to comment on projects in video responses instead of text responses.  This has the possibility of turning an essentially faceless class into one where the individuals involved are able to see and connect with their classmates.

Respondus LockDown Browser Evaluation

This solution is designed to lock the browser of a student.  The purpose is to limit cheating on online tests in Sakai.  However, without a second piece of software to monitor the students it may be ineffective.  This is due to the fact that many students hold multiple devices and the lockdown software will not prevent the use of a second internet-enabled device or book.

Future Pilots

Proctoring or Monitoring Software

Currently, the IDLT team is working with experts in the Sakai community to isolate and test different forms of monitoring software.  This, when coupled with Lockdown browser, would allow a professor to view their students as they take an exam and confirm that they are not using a secondary device. 

Past Pilots

Software Solution for Classroom Response Software

This study was concluded and it was deemed that the best solution for Bradley University is a physical hardware solution.  These solutions are available to students through the Bradley Bookstore and we offer training sessions for professors.  Furthermore, it was deemed that software solutions were more reliable – according to a survey sent to students in the pilot, whereas using mobile phones could lead to distractions and, possibly, enable cheating. Due to the desire to provide stable solutions, IDLT deemed a physical solution to be the best option as there are only three points of failure: the computer presenting the questions, the USB receiver, and the student’s personal clicker.