Fall 2023 tools and support for online success

Welcome back! Please see below for quick reminders of great MiraCosta resources to help you enable your students to succeed in online environments! If you use Pearson tools in Canvas, please be sure to see the final bullet in the first section for a critical update that occurred this summer.

Support for You

  • Our Canvas start-of-term checklist can help you prepare your classes.
  • The MiraCosta Online Class Quality Guidelines provides MiraCosta requirements and recommended practices for online instructors.
  • Ongoing faculty support – You can set a meeting with our Instructional Designer, Nadia Khan, any time. Note: the Online Mentor program has not yet been renewed – I will keep you informed if/when that becomes available again.
  • Tech Support – Canvas options include 24×7 phone and chat support. Just click the Tech Support button at lower left in Canvas! Zoom and other MiraCostatech support for faculty is available through the MiraCosta employee help desk
  • NEW Panda Pros are Canvas experts who provide free 45 minute 1-1 consultations as well as weekly live “Dear Panda Pros” webinars on particular Canvas topics.
  • MiraCosta technologies supporting online teaching and learning – please see the last section of this email for an overview, with links to learn more.
  • Pearson users! The integration between Pearson and Canvas had a major update following the spring term. MyLab is now called PearsonAccess. Links to Pearson MyLab tools from copied courses will no longer work and must be updated. Please see the Pearson Canvas integration guide for instructors and Pearson Transition guide to learn more, and reach out to your Pearson rep if you need assistance.

Support for Your Students – Please help your students to be aware of and make use of these important services and resources!

  • Student Online Academic Readiness workshops  In collaboration with the library, I’ll be offering a number of these during the first two weeks of summer – see all dates and times on the TASC site and in Canvas announcements. These workshops engage students with resources MiraCosta provides to support them, as well as habits and attitudes of successful online students. Encourage your students to attend and, if you like, find out which of your students participated in order to incentivize their attendance.
  • Online Student Support Access Points – the Student Support Hubin Canvas, accessed via the Student Support button on the left in Canvas, gives quick access to online support from the library, STEM & MLC, online tutoring, writing center, counseling, career center, open computer lab staff, student help desk, health services, CARE team, and more! NEW: The Ask the Spartan chat integrated into MiraCosta’s website provides both automated responses and (brand new!) the opportunity to connect to Live Chat with staff from many student support areas.
  • Tech Support – At lower left in Canvas is a button for students to quickly access Tech Support options, including 24×7 phone and chat support from Canvas, and our local MiraCosta student help desk.
  • Technology Needs? – Be sure to share the form for students to fill out if they need to borrow a laptop or internet hotspot
  • Class Availability in Canvas – Faculty teaching distance education (online and hybrid) classes are expected to make their classes available by mid-day on the Monday of the week in which they begin. To learn more, please see MiraCosta Distance Education Class Authentication Compliance, Start-of-Term Availability Procedures, and Recommendations.

MiraCosta’s Online Education Tools

Click the links for a detailed MiraCosta-specific overview (and often, recorded Flex workshops) for each tool below. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions about these or other resources.

  • Canvas 
  • Zoom – if you’re using Zoom, make sure you’re using a pro Zoom account through MiraCosta.
  • Canvas Studio – enables faculty and students to create videos while inside Canvas. Faculty can create interactive discussion or quiz activities based on video.
  • Pronto is an incredible mobile-friendly and Canvas-integrated messaging platform that’s ready to use in every course.
  • Perusall is a social annotation tool available within Canvas that makes it easy for students to comment/discuss right on a text, document, or image.
  • Lab Archives Electronic Notebook is an online notebook especially useful for translating lab manuals and student notes/work into the online environment.
  • Pope Tech helps faculty detect and correct accessibility issues within Canvas. NEW: the PopeTech dashboard tool added to Canvas this summer provides a course overview for addressing all accessibility issues in a course in one place, rather than having to go item-by-item through Canvas.
  • SensusAccess is a NEW tool added this summer to provide multi-format course material accessibility and file type conversion options for students, replacing Ally. If you notice an S symbol next to your page title and next to items in the Modules view, that’s SensusAccess.
  • PlayPosit – This video interaction tool offers more complexity and options than Studio. Studio is a great place to start, but if you’re looking for more types of interactivity to add to your videos, PlayPosit is great. 
  • Turnitin – help students learn to properly cite sources and avoid plagiarism. Also provides grading and peer review tools for written work. Turnitin includes an AI detection capability for instructors at this time, but please beware of false positives should you use it.

Best wishes for a fantastic fall!

– Jim

Jim Julius, Ed.D.
Faculty Coordinator, Online Education

New ‘S’ symbol showing up in Canvas

Hello, all –

Sensus Access Logo S

You may notice a new ‘S’ symbol showing up next to items listed in the Modules view of Canvas and next to the title of most Canvas pages.

Clicking the ‘S’ enables the alternate media conversion provided by a new tool just added to Canvas, SensusAccess. I described a bit about this tool in the recent email below. This tool is primarily for the benefit of students who may wish to generate alternate ways to accessibly interact with content. We are still in the process of refining the implementation and expect to be developing more faculty- and student-facing instructions for using SensusAccess soon.

For now, feel free to ignore or mess around with it!

– Jim

———–

On 6/27/23, 11:35 AM, “Jim Julius” <jjulius@miracosta.edu> wrote:

Happy summer, MiraCosta faculty! I have a few quick but important updates that will help us all increase the accessibility and inclusion of our course materials!

NEW! Pope Tech Accessibility Dashboard in Canvas

Hopefully you’re familiar with the Pope Tech tool that has given you page-by-page checking and support for accessibility in Canvas. I’m happy to announce that in early July, we’ll be adding the Pope Tech Dashboard to Canvas. This will add a new item visible only to you in each Canvas course menu – Pope Tech Accessibility – which will bring you to a course dashboard where you can review and correct accessibility concerns throughout your entire Canvas course, rather than needing to run page-by-page checks. See our Pope Tech guide for more info!

NEW! SensusAccess Alternate Media Converter (replacing Ally)

Also coming in early July to MiraCosta is SensusAccess. This tool will provide a way to convert files on demand into other file types, media types, and languages, compliant with accessibility standards. We’ll also have the tool embedded in Canvas, providing students with more inclusive access to content by enabling conversion on demand. Similar functionality was previously provided by the Ally tool, which is being removed from Canvas at the end of June. See our SensusAccess guide for more info!

Video Captioning News and Reminders

Most of you probably use video tools that have excellent auto-captioning and easy-to-use caption cleanup tools, such as Canvas StudioZoom, or YouTube. For anyone who may use the professional captioning service available through 3C Media Solutions, please know it will be unavailable for 6-10 weeks starting July 1. If you need professional captioning support, please reach out to Aaron Holmes, Access Specialist with Student Accessibility Services (aholmes@miracosta.edu).

– Jim

Jim Julius, Ed.D.
Faculty Coordinator, Online Education

MiraCosta Online tech inclusion and access updates

Happy summer, MiraCosta faculty! I have a few quick but important updates that will help us all increase the accessibility and inclusion of our course materials!

NEW! Pope Tech Accessibility Dashboard in Canvas

Hopefully you’re familiar with the Pope Tech tool that has given you page-by-page checking and support for accessibility in Canvas. I’m happy to announce that in early July, we’ll be adding the Pope Tech Dashboard to Canvas. This will add a new item visible only to you in each Canvas course menu – Pope Tech Accessibility – which will bring you to a course dashboard where you can review and correct accessibility concerns throughout your entire Canvas course, rather than needing to run page-by-page checks. See our Pope Tech guide for more info!

NEW! SensusAccess Alternate Media Converter (replacing Ally)

Also coming in early July to MiraCosta is SensusAccess. This tool will provide a way to convert files on demand into other file types, media types, and languages, compliant with accessibility standards. We’ll also have the tool embedded in Canvas, providing students with more inclusive access to content by enabling conversion on demand. Similar functionality was previously provided by the Ally tool, which is being removed from Canvas at the end of June. See our SensusAccess guide for more info!

Video Captioning News and Reminders

Most of you probably use video tools that have excellent auto-captioning and easy-to-use caption cleanup tools, such as Canvas StudioZoom, or YouTube. For anyone who may use the professional captioning service available through 3C Media Solutions, please know it will be unavailable for 6-10 weeks starting July 1. If you need professional captioning support, please reach out to Aaron Holmes, Access Specialist with Student Accessibility Services (aholmes@miracosta.edu).

– Jim

Jim Julius, Ed.D.
Faculty Coordinator, Online Education

Summer 2023 Online Teaching @ MiraCosta

For those teaching this summer, please see below for quick reminders of key resources to help you help your students succeed! If you use Pearson tools in Canvas, please be sure to see the final bullet in the first section for recent critical updates.

Support for You

  • OurCanvas start-of-term checklist can help you prepare your classes.
  • TheMiraCosta Online Class Quality Guidelines provides MiraCosta requirements and recommended practices for online instructors.
  • Ongoing faculty support – You can request an appointment with our Instructional Designer anytime.
  • Tech Support – Canvas options include 24×7 phone and chat support. Just click the Tech Support button at lower left in Canvas! Zoom and other MiraCosta tech support for faculty is available through the MiraCosta employee help desk.
  • MiraCosta technologies supporting online teaching and learning – please see the last section of this email for an overview, with links to learn more.
  • Pearson users! The integration between Pearson and Canvas had a major update following the spring term. MyLab is now called PearsonAccess. Links to Pearson MyLab tools from copied courses will no longer work and must be updated. Please see the Pearson Canvas integration guide for instructors and Pearson Transition guide to learn more, and reach out to your Pearson rep if you need assistance.

Support for Your Students – Please help your students to be aware of and make use of these important services and resources!

  • Student Online Academic Readiness workshops  In collaboration with the library, I’ll be offering a number of these during the first two weeks of summer – see all dates and times on the TASC site and in Canvas announcements. These workshops engage students with resources MiraCosta provides to support them, as well as habits and attitudes of successful online students. Encourage your students to attend and, if you like, find out which of your students participated in order to incentivize their attendance.
  • Online Student Support Access Points – the Student Support Hubin Canvas, accessed via the Student Support button on the left in Canvas, gives quick access to online support from the library, STEM & MLC, online tutoring, writing center, counseling, career center, open computer lab staff, student help desk, health services, CARE team, and more! The Help Hut on the MiraCosta website is also a quick way for students to connect with all kinds of support services including A&R and Financial Aid.
  • Tech Support – Also at lower left in Canvas is a button for students to quickly access Tech Support options, including 24×7 phone and chat support from Canvas, and our local MiraCosta student help desk.
  • Technology Needs? – Be sure to share the form for students to fill out if they need a laptop to succeed this summer
  • Class Availability in Canvas – Faculty teaching distance education (online and hybrid) classes are expected to make their classes available by mid-day on the Monday of the week in which they begin. To learn more, please see MiraCosta Distance Education Class Authentication Compliance, Start-of-Term Availability Procedures, and Recommendations.

MiraCosta’s Online Education Tools

Click the link immediately after each bullet for a detailed MiraCosta-specific overview of each tool below. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions about these or other resources.

  • Canvas – of course
  • Zoom – if you’re using Zoom, make sure you’re using a pro Zoom account through MiraCosta.
  • Canvas Studio – enables faculty and students to create videos while inside Canvas. Faculty can create interactive discussion or quiz activities based on video.
  • Pronto is an incredible mobile-friendly and Canvas-integrated messaging platform that’s ready to use in every course.
  • Perusall is a social annotation tool available within Canvas that makes it easy for students to comment/discuss right on a text, document, or image.
  • Lab Archives Electronic Notebook is an online notebook especially useful for translating lab manuals and student notes/work into the online environment.
  • Pope Tech helps faculty detect and correct accessibility issues within Canvas. See also Tips for Creating Accessible Course Content. Note – a new PopeTech tool will be added later this summer providing a course overview dashboard for addressing all accessibility issues in a course in one place, rather than having to go item-by-item through Canvas.
  • Ally automatically converts content you share through Canvas into multiple formats for students, allowing for listening rather than reading and better access to content on mobile devices. IMPORTANT: MiraCosta will discontinue use of Ally later this summer, and begin using a different tool called SensusAccess to provide similar multi-format course material conversion options for students.
  • PlayPosit – This video interaction tool offers more complexity and options than Studio. Studio is a great place to start, but if you’re looking for more question types to add to your videos, PlayPosit is a great option. 
  • Turnitin – help students learn to properly cite sources and avoid plagiarism. Also provides grading and peer review tools for written work.
  • Productivity Software and other resources for online teaching – this ITS website includes a number of links to helpful resources for being fully equipped when teaching from your home.

Best wishes for summer success!

– Jim

Jim Julius, Ed.D.
Faculty Director, Online Education

End of Spring 2023 Online Ed Tips 

Dear MiraCosta Faculty, 

Hooray, summer is almost here! But first, some reminders and opportunities as you wrap up spring classes and begin thinking about what’s next.

Canvas End of Term

After June 6, your spring Canvas classes go into read-only mode for you and your students. If you wish to remove access to any of your course materials for your current students beyond this semester, you need to do so by then. Review our Canvas end-of-term guide for details. It also discusses what you need to do if you have any students who will receive Incomplete grades.

Support for Wrapping Up Classes and Summer/Fall Class Prep 

Please Clean Up Zoom Recordings

  • The cloud storage for our Zoom recordings is well beyond contracted capacity. If you can take some time to delete unneeded Zoom recordings, it will help us all out. Log into your Zoom account and click Recordings on the left-hand menu. Select all recordings that you do not need and delete them.
  • If you have any meetings set up for automatic cloud recording but you rarely use the recordings, consider changing that setting so that you only record what you need.

Summer Professional Learning Opportunities

  • The Online Teaching Conference is in Long Beach, June 21-23. Early bird registration has been extended through May 24. Contact me if you’re interested in funding to support your registration.  
  • There are some great @ONE online teaching self-paced courses. (Unfortunately, the facilitated summer courses seem to be full.) 
  • free online conference called Cal OER returns for its second year, Aug. 2-4. The call for proposals closes June 12. Conference registration ($25) is open now.
  • When’s the last time you explored the TIC website? Start on the tic.miracosta.edu home page and see where it leads you – there are many great resources including workshop recordings, tutorials, examples, and guidelines for online teaching.

Have a super summer!

– Jim

Jim Julius, Ed.D.
Faculty Director, Online Education

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