Growing Online Learning 2014: Using Technology to Retain and Engage Students

Tuesday, February 11th - Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Growing Online Learning 2014 Flyer PDF

"Online teaching will never be as good as real teaching," and other lies your elders told you.

with Michelle Stephens

Theater Professor and Author

"Online teaching will never be as good as real teaching," and other lies your elders told you.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014, 10:00am to 11:00am
Michelle Stephens
Theater Professor and Author
Richland Community College
Stephens, author of Prepare for Impact and Teaching in Zero Gravity, is both a lover of technology and a skeptic. During her keynote session, she explains how the outcomes of online education have nothing to do with the classroom impact. Working deftly, like a hibachi chef, she will separate out all of the key components of online education and of teaching and explain that not only is real comparable online education within our grasp, it is at our door. Then she will toss them with some vegetables and throw them on your plate. (These are often referred to as "takeaways.") She will also explain how having impact in the classroom is a lot more low-tech than you think. Using multiple perspectives, Stephens weaves pedagogy and storytelling like . . . Well, like a person who weaves a lot of things together. Particularly important things.

Recorded Link:

Throw Out the Cookie Cutters!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014, 02:00pm to 03:00pm

Linda Lee
Associate Director of Educational Technology and Innovation
Carl Sandburg College

Jill Johnson
Associate Dean of Social and Behavioral Science
Carl Sandburg College

Throw out the cookie cutter and allow students to shape their own learning space in online classes. Personalized learning paths and U-Pace will be discussed.

Recorded Link:

Building content knowledge and community in an online course using storybooks

Wednesday, February 12, 2014, 10:00am to 11:00am
Elizabeth Kershisnik
Oakton Community College
Having groups create a child's storybook about a chemistry concept can help solidify content knowledge and build group cohesion. This presentation will cover 1) how the group project is designed, 2) ways to assign groups, 3) rubrics and assessment, and 4) successes and pitfalls of this type of learning module.

Recorded Link:

Creating An Accessible Online Course

Wednesday, February 12, 2014, 12:00pm to 01:00pm
Janet Peters
Project Coordinator for Education and Assistive Technology
University of Illinois at Chicago
What does the word accessible mean to you? You may first think of the word available. Something that is accessible is available, or perhaps within reach for you to use. However, just because something is available doesn't necessarily mean it is accessible. For instance, if you are hard of hearing or have poor vision, a course may be "available" but hard or impossible for you to use because it was not designed with accessibility in mind. This session will discuss the reasons to create your course in an accessible way and will offer practical and easy tips on how to do that, including checklists and resources to streamline the process.

Recorded Link:

Improving Online Student Retention

Wednesday, February 12, 2014, 02:00pm to 03:00pm
Kona Jones
Director of Online Learning
Richland Community College
Retention and success are important issues, yet in most cases there is little to nothing done to directly monitor and provide early intervention strategies to online students at risk. Because of this, Richland Community College partnered with AspireEDU to help improve their online retention. Aspire pulls various pieces of student information from Richland's LMS and is able to then provide a "risk index" of how likely it is that each student will drop out or fail their online course(s). Using this risk score, Richland was able to quickly pick out the online students most at risk and start an early alert intervention with the students. This session will include tips on how to identify at risk students, Richland's early alert strategy, and results of the initial online retention pilot.

Recorded Link:

Enrich Online Student Learning Experience by using Screencast-O-Matic

Thursday, February 13, 2014, 10:00am to 11:00am

Dr Diane King
Coordinator of Early Childhood Education and Education Programs
Southeastern Illinois College

Terry Lucas
Educational Technology Specialist
Southeastern Illinois College

Online students benefit from personalized contact and encouragement. Incorporating video and audio feedback for written assignments adds another dimension to online pedagogy.

Recorded Link:

Getting audio and video into your online course

Thursday, February 13, 2014, 02:00pm to 03:00pm

Nancy Heuer-Evans
Illinois Central College

Brandy Thatcher
Instructional Media Developer
Illinois Central College

Brett Coup
Associate Dean for Instructional Technology
College of Dupage

Join us for a discussion of tips, tricks and ideas for working with audio and video in your online course. We'll discuss common challenges for getting audio and video into your courses: efficient storage of large media files, competing video formats, browser issues. You will also hear a faculty member's perspective on using audio and video in her online courses. We'll demonstrate a few solutions, such as using Google Drive for hosting video.

Recorded Link:

For more information, contact Jeff Newell -