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Staff Newsletter - April 2016


THINKING BEYOND THE CLASSROOM

Blended learning refers to the idea of incorporating a digital platform into class-conducting course exercises and discussions both in-person and virtually. But in my experience, it means much more. Blended learning encouraged me to think more critically about world issues and provided me increased opportunities for collaboration with my peers.

I had the opportunity to take a blended learning course that combined traditional classroom methods with elements of technology. Most of the class discussions took place online. This allowed my classmates and me to engage with the course material in a more focused way. We were able to reference the curriculum and link to external content which demonstrated how what we were learning related to real-world policies. The interactions I had online with my classmates were often more productive and dynamic than in our face-to-face sessions. As a result, I developed more meaningful relationships with the other students in my blended learning course than in the traditional in-person courses I was taking at the time. Blended learning gave us more time to reflect on course topics and challenge each other to think more critically about what we were learning.

As a student, I believe learning should not be passive, but rather encourage student productivity in the form of creative ideas, innovative proposals, and research methods that act as drivers of change. Blended learning gave me the opportunity to do all these things by encouraging me to think beyond the classroom setting and attempt to answer real world questions.

5TH ANNUAL ePORTFOLIO CONTEST

Submission Deadline Friday, April 20th
 
Do you have a student who deserves recognition?
Encourage them to submit their portfolio to the 5th Annual ePortfolio Contest by April 20th.
Winners receive a $100 Visa gift card and will be recognized at the Writing Enhanced Course Awards with an ePortfolio Certificate of Excellence.
 
Student can enter at ePortfolio.pace.edu via the Spring Contest link on their dashboard page. Help students showcase their hard work and win big!
 
Learn more

BLACKBOARD MIGRATION INSTRUCTIONS  

 
The Blackboard migration will occur from Monday, May 16th (12:00PM) - Friday, May 27th (5:00PM).
 
What do Faculty need to know?
The migration consists of moving content to the hosted environment.  It is important to note:
  • Faculty are strongly encouraged to complete all grading before Monday, May 16th at 9:00AM.
  • All "I" grades will still automatically change to an "F" grade after the standard 6
    week period.
Below is a table for when the courses will be available per session.
 
Session
Unavailable
Available
Spring
Monday, May 16th (12:00PM) through
Friday, May 27th (4:59PM)
Friday, May 27th (5:00PM)
May
Intersession
Monday, May 16th (12:00PM) through
Monday, May 16th (4:59PM)
Monday, May 16th (5:00PM)
Summer I Monday, May 16th (12:00PM) through
Monday, May 16th (4:59PM)
Monday, May 16th (5:00PM)
Summer II Monday, May 16th (12:00PM) through
Friday, May 27th (4:59PM)
Friday, May 27th (5:00PM)

What are the benefits of migrating our Blackboard Learning Management System?
Managed Hosting provides a stable and scalable environment for building more online/blended courses in the future.  It allows for Pace to optimize our current staffing resources to deliver better support to our faculty and students.  In addition, approximately 80% of Blackboard customers have migrated to Managed Hosting to enhance their services.

What do Students need to know?

Courses that run during May Intersession, Summer I, and Summer II will become available on the Course Start Date as defined in Banner.

For updates and details on the Blackboard Migration, please visit our IT System Status page at http://status.pace.edu.  

Learn more


ACADEMIC COMPUTER REQUIREMENTS 

 
Many of our licensed applications and programs used for academic courses are Windows based. With our students bringing a wide variety of technologies to campus, it is critical to check if your course software is available in Windows and Mac OSX environments. Software not compatible with Mac OSX environments requires Apple users to utilize Boot Camp or obtain a separate program such as VMware Fusion or Parallels which will then allow for the Windows operating system to be installed on the Apple computer.
  • Faculty with questions on software for their courses should reach out to ITS for review and recommendations.
  • Students should reach out to the vendors for specific questions and software installation assistance. Once the prerequisite software have been installed, ITS can assist with installing the free version of MS Office through adam.pace.edu.

Check out IT Discounts for discount software purchases.

For details on hardware and software for academic and University needs, visit the Supported Hardware page.


COMPUTER SAFETY TIPS  


Mobile devices more than ever have become the main way to communicate and interact with each other. With all these convenient features come added risks, but here are some tips to protect your devices and your personal information.
  • Password-protect your devices.
    It is recommended to configure your devices to lock after a short period of time. Remote wipe your device if it's lost or stolen by enabling passwords, PINs, fingerprint scans, or other forms of authentication. 
  • Secure those devices and backup data.
    Make sure that you can remotely lock or wipe each mobile device. That also means backing up data on each device in case you need to use the remote wipe function.
  • Verify app permissions.
    Review privacy and access levels requested by the app before and after installing it! Limit access whenever possible (e.g., Does the app really need access to your contacts and location?)
  • Update operating systems and apps.
    Security fixes or patches for mobile devices are often included in OS and App updates.
  • Be cautious of public Wi-Fi hot spots.
    Avoid any website requiring you to log in or to transmit financial or other sensitive information.
  • Turn off Bluetooth when you aren't using it.

For more security best practices, go to: IT Security.


DYSON AND LUBIN COURSE EVALUATIONS AND GRADE DELAYS
 

Course evaluation is critical in providing constructive feedback to faculty and their departments on the quality of instruction delivered at Pace.  Dyson College and Lubin School of Business are urging all students taking any Dyson or Lubin course to participate.

Course evaluations for Spring 2016 will be available during the following time frame: Wednesday, April 20th - Wednesday May 4th. The grades for this semester will be delayed until Wednesday, May 18th for any students who have not completed all of their evaluations by the deadline noted above.

Further details and instructions will be sent to students when the period opens on Wednesday, April 20th.  Faculty will receive an email on Wednesday, May 18th with information on how to run their reports. 
Questions? For Dyson contact Rich Miller (rmiller@pace.edu) and for Lubin contact Tom Miliano (tmiliano@pace.edu).

EMAIL MAILBOX UPGRADE

The last group of NY Student accounts was upgraded successfully on Thursday, April 7th. For more details visit: Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Upgrade.


PHAROS PRINTING SYSTEM UPGRADE

The Pharos Printing System will be upgraded over the summer. Details to follow at www.pace.edu/printing.

Learn more


WEBINAR WEDNESDAYS 

 
Academic Technologies' Webinar Wednesdays series offers an in-depth look at technologies related to teaching and learning. Webinars focus on a specific technology and offer best practices, tips, tutorials, and suggestions.  
  • Topic: Online Assessment Tools
    Date: Wednesday, April 13th: 12:10PM-1:10PM
  • Topic: Creating Blackboard Tests from Word, Excel, and Publisher Banks 
    Date: Wednesday, April 27th: 12:10PM-1:10PM
  • Topic: Open Forum
    Date: Wednesday, May 11th: 12:10PM-1:10PM
For more information and updated schedules go to www.pace.edu/webinars.
MOBILE TECH MEETINGS

Don't miss out on a unique opportunity to join Apple for their presentation at the Monday, May 9th Mobile Tech meeting.

Below are the remaining dates for Spring 2016 Mobile Technology meetings.       
  • Wednesday, April 20th: 12:20PM-1:15PM: Miller 16 and Civic E319
  • Monday, May 9th: 12:10PM-1:10PM: Miller 16 and Civic E319