How can I create an inclusive online learning environment?

Creating an Inclusive Online Learning Environment
Friday, October 2, 2020, 3:00pm ET

10/2/2020 ACUE webinar: Creating an Inclusive Online Learning Environment

Panelists will share practices they have found helpful to effectively set expectations for valuing diverse viewpoints, facilitating respectful conversations, and engaging students in inclusive active learning exercises. The teaching practices discussed in this FREE webinar can be utilized in a variety of disciplines and course sizes to promote equity and inclusion.

Moderated by Charity Peak, Regional Director of Academic Programs at ACUE, this panel will feature a brief keynote from Michael Benitez Jr., Vice President for the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at Metropolitan State University, Denver.

Register NOW!

NEW! Opt in to Display Personal Pronouns in Canvas

All users can choose personal pronouns in their Canvas profiles. Pronouns in Canvas display in locations such as:

  • Comment Fields
  • Discussions
  • Inbox
  • People Page (Course and Groups)
  • User Navigation Menu
  • User Profile Page
  • User Settings Page

The default is “None” and users can opt in to displaying a pronoun in Account > Settings. Available pronouns include:

  • He/Him
  • She/Her
  • They/Them

Here’s how:

  1. While logged in to Canvas, click Account in the global navigation.
  2. Click on the Settings link.
  3. Click the Edit Settings button (on the right side of the page)
  4. Select the desired pronouns from the drop-down menu.
  5. Click the Update Settings button.

[must log in with W&L credentials]

Questions? Contact the ITS Information Desk at 540.458.4357 or email help@wlu.edu.

And if you’re wondering … 

What are Personal Pronouns?

Pronouns are used on a regular basis to refer to people without using their name and imply one’s gender (he, she, they, etc.). Pronouns are one of the many ways we define our identities. 

But why do Personal Pronouns Matter?

You can’t/shouldn’t assume someone’s pronouns by their appearance or name. Referring to someone by the wrong pronoun can be damaging, making the person feel disrespected, invalidated, and/or dysphoric. Correctly using someone’s personal pronoun shows respect for their identities and helps foster an inclusive community. 

Can I share a Box file or folder with someone who doesn’t have W&L credentials?

Aye! You sure can!

But if they have issues opening the file or folder, the problem may be that they must first accept W&L’s Terms of Service before they can access the content you’ve tried to share.  

Have the outside user follow these  steps outlined in these instructions:

https://wlu.box.com/v/nonWLbox

If that doesn’t work, contact the ITS Information Desk at help@wlu.edu or call 540.458.4357.

Zoom-Canvas Integration is now active!

The Canvas-Zoom integration allows instructors to schedule and manage online meetings with their students. 

When you create a Zoom meeting within Canvas, you do not need to send meeting invites to students who are enrolled in the course.

A notification is also sent out to students within Canvas, as well as to their W&L email (assuming they haven’t changed the default notifications). Additionally, an event is created with the Zoom meeting information in the course calendar.

Students only use the Zoom tool in Canvas to join meetings created by Teachers in the course. Students can use Zoom outside of Canvas — by logging into myapps.wlu.edu with their W&L credentials and clicking the Zoom tile OR zoom.wlu.us with their W&L credentials — to create and host their own meetings.

How to Add Zoom to Your Canvas Course

Here’s a 3 minute video that will show you how to enable Zoom in your Canvas course and create a meeting invite:

How to Add Zoom to Your Canvas Course

Open Settings

Open Settings

In Course Navigation, click the Settings link.

Open Navigation

Open Navigation

Click the Navigation tab.

Enable Zoom

how to enable Zoom in your Canvas course navigation

Click the blue “Save” button. After the browser refreshes, you will see the Zoom link in your course navigation. Click on the Zoom link to schedule meetings for your Canvas course!  (You will first be asked to authorize Zoom before you can use the tool. Once you click the “Authorize” button, you will be able to schedule or start meetings with your students.)

NOTE: Not all Zoom meeting settings, such as pre-assigning breakout rooms or creating polls, are available in the Zoom app in Canvas. Additional meeting settings are available in the W&L Zoom web portal at wlu.zoom.us.

But you can then import that meeting into Canvas, by clicking on the 3 vertical buttons next to “Schedule a New Meeting”:

screenshot of how to import a Zoom meeting into the Canvas-Zoom interface

and entering the Meeting ID. When you import the meeting, it will then be treated as if you’d created that Zoom meeting within Canvas. Students will receive notifications in Canvas and through their W&L email and an event with the Zoom information will be added to the course calendar.

Questions? Need help? Contact the ITS Information Desk at 540.458.4357 or help@wlu.edu.

What’s New in Perusall: You can now add VIDEO! 🙌🏻 🙌🏻 🙌🏻

  • Your students can now engage socially around video content in the same way they already can around books, articles, and other documents. Go to Library > Add > Video and select a video from YouTube, Vimeo, Google Drive, Dropbox, or a video file hosted elsewhere to add to your course.
  • You can now allow colleagues to copy your course (your documents, assignments, instructor-initiated threads, and settings) without having to give them instructor access to your course. Go to Settings > Access to obtain your course’s unique “copy code” that another instructor can use to copy from your course. Instructors with your copy code can copy the content in your course but have no access to student data.
  • You can now use more flexible search syntax to search books and other documents, like a web search: search for exact phrases by enclosing them in quotation marks, indicate that a word must appear with a plus sign, or indicate that a word must not appear with a minus sign. Visit the search page on Perusall’s support site for more information.
  • When you use the Canvas integration, Perusall can now mirror your Canvas groups within Perusall, avoiding the need to define groups manually in Perusall. Visit the Canvas setup page on Perusall’s support site for more information.

Get ready, get set … GO! Time to register for Fall Academy!

Fall Academy is two fabulous weeks — Monday, August 3 through Friday, August 14 — of technology instruction, pedagogy discussions, guest speakers, hands-on workshops, panels, and other information sessions for new and returning faculty and staff, offered in coordination with the University Registrar, Dean of the College, Office of the Provost, and other offices.

Please visit https://go.wlu.edu/fallacademy to register. All recorded sessions will be posted to summeracademy.academic.wlu.edu.

Excellent advice and practical tips for moving to virtual recorded learning!

Gearing up for asynchronous lecturing and thinking about student engagement in online and/or hybrid courses? Then set aside a few minutes to read this terrific thread with practical tips and tricks on lecture capture. Many thanks to @vijisathy for compiling and sharing your thoughts about creating a “high-structure active learning classroom”.

New Resource: Inclusive Teaching Practices Toolkit

By implementing inclusive teaching practices, faculty create learning environments where all students feel they belong and have the opportunity to achieve at high levels.

ACUE is excited to introduce a set of free resources—including videos and downloadable planning guides—that can be immediately put to use to benefit both faculty and their students. These practices are tailored for online teaching but are also relevant to the physical classroom.

These 10 practices include:

  1. Ensure your course reflects a diverse society and world.
  2. Ensure course media are accessible.
  3. Ensure your syllabus sets the tone for diversity and inclusion.
  4. Use inclusive language.
  5. Share your gender pronouns.
  6. Learn and use students’ preferred names.
  7. Engage students in a small-group introductions activity.
  8. Use an interest survey to connect with students.
  9. Offer inclusive office hours.
  10. Set expectations for valuing diverse viewpoints.

The Inclusive Teaching Practices Toolkit was developed in collaboration with Dr. Marlo Goldstein Hode, Senior Manager, Strategic Diversity Initiatives, Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, University of Missouri-St. Louis.

FACULTY FOCUS: “A Reflection on the Sudden Transition: Ideas to Make Your Synchronous Online Classes More Fun”

Fun Activities for Online Classes

  1. We play a “This/That” game. It is really silly, but both the students and I have fun with it, or at least I do. For example, I start the game with the first student who volunteers. “Do you like Semantics/Pragmatics? Why?” “Would you like to be the Broca’s area/Wernicke’s area? Why?” “Would you like to have a conversation with a toddler/a preschooler? How?”  Then each student calls out a peer’s name and asks them a similar question. We make sure that everyone gets a turn.

  2. We play “Two truths and a lie.” For example, I start with the first student. “Intentional communication emerges around 8-9 months. Joint attention emerges around 6 – 10 months of age. Inflectional morphemes are mastered by age 3.” The student has to select which one of these statements is a lie. And then, I give the students a checklist that they can use to ask the next person another “Two truths and a lie” question. 

  3. Another game we play is called “Circle of questions.” One student starts with a question. For example, “What is decontextualized language?” The next student then responds and asks a question to the person that she / he tags. The next question needs to be in some way related to the first question. For example, it can be related to decontextualized language or language development in preschoolers. All students get a chance to ask and respond.

  4. We play a “Tell your grandma” / “Teach your grandpa” game. I post questions ahead of time. If there are 10 students, I post 10 questions. Each student picks a question and spends about two minutes preparing an answer. I then pretend to be the grandma or grandpa, and I ask a question pretending to not know anything about it. For example, I say, “What exactly is phonological awareness?” And then I annoy them by saying, “Really? I can’t understand that. Could you tell me what a phoneme is first? Why would a child need phonological awareness? What does it have to do with reading?” etc. So, I spend about five minutes with each student doing this. 

  5. Another game is called “Emoji Slides.” This is a great game to play before exams. I have a set of pre-made slides. Each slide displays a concept or a word or a question. I share my screen and present one slide at a time. Students have to respond by reacting to the word/concept/question on the slide with an emoji – 😃 Happy , 😔 Sad, or 😐 Neutral. If I see a 😃 happy emoji from all students, I move on to presenting the next slide. If a few students respond with a sad or neutral emoji, I stop and explain the concept or give examples, and then ask them to react with an emoji again. If the emoji is now happy, we move ahead. Students can also create their own slides, share their screen, tag a person, and ask them to react.

  6. Another game we play is “Who am I?” For example, I say, “I am a part of the cochlea that separates the scala media and the scala tympani. Who am I?” “I acquired two languages at the same time before the age of 3.Who am I?”

  7. We do online role plays. For example, one student volunteers, and we practice asking questions as part of a case history while I pretend to be the caregiver and the student takes the role of a speech-language pathologist. We then reverse roles. We also role play to practice counseling. I provide a list of case-based scenarios that all students can look at. I read each scenario aloud, and students take turns to counsel me while I play the role of the client.

  8. For review of concepts, we use collaborative worksheets. We use this activity every time we meet online as students like the structure and repetition of this activity. I post a worksheet with several questions (multiple choice, fill in the blanks, true/false, explain a term, give an example, compare two concepts, etc.). Students can then open this worksheet on their Microsoft Teams browser and start typing answers to these questions. Students can see each other’s responses, and I can see both their names and their responses. They get immediate synchronous feedback. I respond next to their responses with a happy emoji if their answer is correct. If their answers seem vague or incorrect, I edit it online while everyone else can see my edits. You can do this activity with Google Docs if you are not using Microsoft Teams.

  9. Finally, we use short 15-minute quizzes during the synchronous class time. I create quizzes using Microsoft Forms because it is compatible with Teams. These quizzes are not part of the course grade; they are merely used for practice. Students can complete the quiz on their individual devices during class time, and I can review their responses, where they can get immediate feedback. You can create these on your course LMS, use Google Forms, or simply read a question out loud and have students respond in the chat screen or shout out the answers.

Read the entire article by Siva priya Santhanam, Ph.D., CCC-SLP,  assistant professor at the Dept. of Speech, Language, Hearing Sciences, Metropolitan State University of Denver, Colorado at https://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/online-education/ideas-to-make-your-synchronous-online-classes-more-fun/.