Engaging students through online technology

When online technology merges with education, it can help support learning objectives across a variety of disciplines.

How to best use technology to engage students will be the focus of the e-Learning Showcase from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 4 in room 200 at Cline Library.

The showcase has a heavy emphasis on faculty dialogue and interaction, said¬†Sharon Gorman, instructional technologist for NAU’s e-Learning Center.

“Working closely with faculty, we can find the right technology tools to support their educational objectives,” she said. “The first focus is on learning, then on the technological tools to enhance it.”

Cecilia Ojeda, Spanish professor and chair of Modern Languages, will be a part of a panel discussion on using voice technology to engage students online. Ojeda has been using the Wimba Voice Board in her lower-level Spanish classes since 2006, and describes it as a “discussion thread with voice” that allows language instructors to record oral assignments for students, then allows students to record oral responses.

“This technology is especially useful for classes that require oral interaction, such as language courses or courses that teach speaking and listening skills,” Ojeda said.

The showcase also will feature panel discussions on implementing “early alert systems” to intervene with students who are academically underperfoming, and ways technology can create greater student access to class materials.

For information or to register for the free e-Learning Showcase, visit www.nau.edu/elearning/events.