Online Engagement Strategies Twitter Chat (11/7/2016 Monday)

Are you looking for ways to connect with your students via social media? Or maybe you’re curious about the ever-changing realm of Twitter and whether it can play a role in your courses? If so, we have the perfect opportunity for you!

graphic adaptation of the twitter bluebird icon made up of the word twitter repeated multiple times

Image by Pauline Arias

You are invited to join Team DELTA and colleagues from Ohio State and beyond in a Twitter chat on Monday, Nov. 7 from 1 p.m. via the @InnovateOSU account to help celebrate National Distance Learning Week. The theme of this chat is online engagement strategies, where you are encouraged to discuss your experiences in online learning and teaching.

“A ‘Twitter chat’?” You may be thinking. “What’s a ‘Twitter chat’? I thought Twitter was an asynchronous microblogging platform on which millions of users, celebritweens, journalesques, brand marketers, bots, trolls, and major party candidates for the presidency post 140-character utterances and images loosely joined to each other through a basic system of handles and hashtags.  Now you’re telling me there’s some fancy new way to use it that might have use for academic discourse?”


A Twitter chat aims to create a new kind of conversation by leveraging the use of handles (e.g., @InnovateOSU) and hashtags (e.g., #NDLW) to create just enough structure around the torrent that is your Twitter feed in order to bring the raw flat energy of Twitter to subjects that are more often discussed in highly routinized and usually hierarchical ways.  The basic rules are pretty simple:

  1. The organizer posts one or more questions, which they flag using a hashtag set up for the event (in our case, it will be #NDLW)
  2. Anyone can respond to that question tweet by posting a tweet flagged with the organizer’s handle (in our case, it will be @InnovateOSU), and the designated hashtag, #NDLW
  3. Anyone else can continue that thread by adding the other @participant’s handle

For more background on the emerging Twitter chat genre and guidance how to participate, see:

We also recommend getting together with a friend or two, especially if this is your first.

We hope to see you online,



Ready, Set, Engage! Interactive OER for Student Engagement Webinar

When?  THIS FRIDAY, 11/4 from 12-1pm (EDT).""

Where?  Link: 

Who?  Presented by Lynn Lease, PhD

Topic Overview

Wish your students would be more engaged? Come explore the world of interactive Open Educational Resources! In this webinar, we will explore and discuss repositories filled with interactive OERs, often linked directly to educational standards, shifting the paradigm from passive text-based instructional materials to interactive and engaging content. Participants will receive a checklist with specific strategies for locating, selecting, implementing, and evaluating interactive OERs.

Presenter Bio

Lynn Lease, PhD is the founding Director of the Center for Educational Excellence providing support for on-campus faculty in curriculum development, instructional design, student assessment, and teaching and learning strategies. She earned her PhD in Education with a specialization in Instructional Design for Online Learning. Beyond her position at UNOH, Lynn serves as a Master Reviewer for Quality Matters and is a member of the Ohio Instructional Designers Association.

Access Link:

(Feel free to forward the meeting link to others who might want to join.)

Sponsored by:  Ohio Instructional Designers Association

The Ohio Instructional Designers Association is open to all of those who are passionate about education. The group is not limited to those who have the position title of “Instructional Designer.” Instructional Design can occur throughout the world of education. The group contains educators fulfilling various roles around the state of Ohio.

Follow them on Twitter! @ohioida 

Join their group on LinkedIn!

ODEE DELTA Webinar Recordings: Improving Student Online Learning through Writing, October 4, 2016 and April 26, 2017

Update: Our WAC colleagues generously delivered an encore presentation of this webinar on April 26, 2017, which featured some exciting discussions of specific examples and experiences by the team and webinar participants.  A recording can be viewed in CarmenConnect.

Writing is well-understood to be a powerful tool for learning, but it can seem daunting to include writing in an online course.  DELTA recently partnered with experts from OSU’s Writing Across the Curriculum program to present an hour-long webinar that describes how to incorporate writing in your online classes most effectively and without over-burdening yourself. For those who were not able to attend in real-time — or who might want to review the excellent discussion — we are hosting a recording of the webinar in CarmenConnect.

In this recording, you can learn how to design engaging, effective assignments that won’t overload your ability to grade them. Learn ways to pitch the complexity of writing assignments to your learning goals, ranging from brief informal writing through longer complex projects. Presented by Dr. Chris Manion, Nora McCook, and Genevieve Ritchie-Ewing of the OSU Center for the Study and Teaching of Writing and hosted by the OSU Distance Education Learning and Teaching Academy.

screen clip from writing online webinar

Click on this image to view the webinar

Using CarmenConnect for Virtual Office Hours

""Earlier this month, Jacob Bane, Sr. Instructional Designer with ODEE, presented a webinar on how to use CarmenConnect to provide virtual office hours to remote students.  As more courses and programs move to online formats, faculty and advisers find themselves rethinking how they connect with their students in meaningful ways.  Although this topic begs for more than one webinar of discussion, Jacob led participants through a few scenarios of how CarmenConnect (OSU’s branded version of AdobeConnect) might be used to help instructors and advisers connect individually as well as in small groups with their students and advisees.  In case you missed it, here is a link to the recording of the 1/2 hour webinar:

For those of you looking to learn more of the “ins and outs” of the CarmenConnect tool, you can access a list of workshops hosted by ODEE by clicking here:  Workshops are updated regularly.  If you do not see a training on a specific tool, consider attending any of the eLearning Support Office Hours or Virtual Office Hours to receive 1:1 assistance.  Remember that you are welcome to request webinars on topics of interest by clicking the Webinars tab at the top of the DELTA blog site (

Perspectives from a new online student

""This summer, one of our new student employees with ODEE enrolled in his first online course at The Ohio State University. Having never been an online student, he was not sure exactly what to expect going in to the course.

Ross reflected on the pieces of the online course that made the transition to online easy in certain respects. “Today, online and in-person courses are going to carry a great deal of similarities. In both cases, most of the course content lives online. In my online course, assignments were still found and submitted online, the syllabus was accessed online and most of the course files, help resources and other course components lived online, just like an in-person class. I knew these things weren’t going to be a problem for me.”

Ross had one apprehension going in to the course, though. “What I was unsure about was how the information was going to be delivered. Obviously, most in-person courses have information delivered through live lectures.” Ross wasn’t sure how he would be asked to learn class material in the online course, but was happy to discover that it was pretty similar how Ross had received lecture information in his on-ground classes yet a bit different. His professor had recorded topic-based voice-over PowerPoint presentations to post in the class. “This helped me learn in the best way that I knew how, and if anything, these online lectures were a little better because they could be accessed at any time.”

“If I had one complaint about my online course, it would be the lack of collaboration present in the course. One of the best parts of an in-person course is the ability to easily work with and communicate with classmates.” Ross explained that when they had to work in small groups, they relied on email with each other to collaborate. He would have preferred having a space within the Carmen Canvas course for his group to meet and collaborate such as using the group discussion board feature. “I felt as though there should have been an easier and more effective way to communicate with other students and the professor within the online course itself. For me, this is what really separated the online course from my previous in-person classes.”

Ross reflected on his first online course. “Overall, my first experience with an online course went better than expected. Some of the collaboration and communication abilities were lost online, but it didn’t end up being too much of an issue. With the online course feeling much like an in-person class, there wasn’t too much of an initial adjustment that needed to be made.”

As we read about Ross’s inaugural online learning experience, we can reflect upon our own course designs and how we deliver content and engage with our online students. Are there opportunities for us to set up spaces in our Carmen Canvas course for students to collaborate with each other? How is our lecture content being presented online and are we following best practices for video and PowerPoint presentations? Some of these questions may be opening up unfamiliar territory of study for instructors new to teaching online. For online instructors, ODEE provides on-demand resources along with face-to-face and online trainings throughout each semester. Feel free to peruse these resources and register for the workshops and webinars most important to your needs.

Considering Cognitive Load in your Teaching

A Description of Cognitive LoadHow often have you wondered whether your students are achieving the level of learning that you’d hoped?  Looking back into your experiences as a student, I bet you can remember those wonderful moments where the learning sunk in for you, and those wretched moments of confusion or learning burnout.  Much of this has to do with how the brain accepts and organizes a learning event, and you can readily affect the brain through being conscious of cognitive load.

The Assumptions of Multimedia Learning

As an instructor, you have an enormous potential for optimizing learning and instruction for your students. The Cognitive Theory of Multimedia Learning, from Richard Mayer of the University of California, can be used to guide you in the creation of a more effective mode of multimedia instruction.

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Using Carmen Connect to Collaborate

Have you ever wanted to connect, or improve your skills when connecting with your students, colleagues, and peers online? The Ohio State University’s online meeting space Carmen Connect, branded from Adobe Connect, is a robust web conferencing solution available to faculty and staff. With a variety of tools and options, Carmen Connect has proven a valuable asset for engagement and collaboration within course rooms, distance meetings, and peer to peer connection.

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Wednesday Kickstart Week

Today we are talking about learning activities in online courses: the stuff students do that will enable them to demonstrate learning on the assessments, such as reading, watching videos, discussions, and other interactions with each other. We specifically talked about ways that traditional in-person activities compare to online activities. Some activities translate more or less directly, while others require re-thinking and new design. And, as Allen November reminds, elearning tools provide opportunities for students to do things that we did not even know were possible.

For today’s reflection, please write about how you anticipate your traditional teaching transforming in the online classroom:

  • What is an activity that you have found successful and plan to continue more or less unchanged?
  • What is an activity that you anticipate needing to revise substantially? What kinds of changes will need to be made?
  • Is there an activity that you don’t think can be done online or that you are anxious about pulling off successfully?
  • Bonus points: What is something you might try for the first time online? (Maybe something you’ve always wished you could ask your students to do but which was not feasible in an in-person situation?

As always, please feel free to include any additional questions or thoughts.

Monday Kickstart Week

Based on this morning’s activities, share something that you learned that you didn’t know before, and ask a question you didn’t know you had.  Feel free to interact with your peers.  If you know the answers to a colleague’s question, answer it!  If someone’s answers or questions lead you to another question you didn’t know you had, ask it!