Events and Workshops

Click here for EdTech currently offered events information and registration. Register for TCDC events here.

Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

Introducing MediaSpace: Langara’s Streaming Video Platform

All faculty and students now have access to MediaSpace (by Kaltura), a YouTube-like video portal that lets you create, upload and share video and audio. Amongst other things, you can use MediaSpace to create video lectures, curate playlists of existing content from YouTube, or provide an online space for students to upload coursework or video/audio assignments.  

By default all content you upload to MediaSpace is private and can only be viewed by you. You can choose to share content with others, or make it public. Video and audio files are stored in the cloud on secure servers at UBC and content can easily be embedded in D2L or iWeb/Courseweb.  

We know that our students expect us to provide them with an inclusive, engaging and accessible learning environment in order to maximize their chances of academic success. MediaSpace is an important piece of the puzzle in that respect. The platform enables instructors to easily incorporate video in face-to-face classroom teaching, or in a mixed-mode or fully online course. We are excited about new features such as interactive quizzing and closed captioning, and look forward to working with you to make the most of MediaSpace in your teaching. 

MediaSpace can be accessed by all Langara staff and students at You will need to login using your Langara Computer User ID and Password in order to upload content to your MyMedia (your personal MediaSpace library of video/audio content). 

To learn more about MediaSpace and how you and your students can use it, come along to our Information Session on Wednesday September 27, 12:30-13:30 in L342.  

You can sign up for this session here

Posted in Media Tools | Tagged | Leave a comment

Turnitin Now Available


Langara has purchased a campus-wide license for Turnitin to support faculty in teaching research and writing skills to their students while also encouraging academic integrity. Turnitin is a similarity checker which allows students and faculty to check assignments for matches in Turnitin’s database of papers, articles, and websites.

All Langara faculty have access to Turnitin through their D2L courses.

We hope that Turnitin will be used as an instructional tool to help students understand the College’s expectations for academic integrity and to practice their skills in summarizing, paraphrasing, quoting and citing their sources appropriately.

While Turnitin is a useful tool, it cannot detect all forms of plagiarism. However, if used in well-designed assignments and learning activities, Turnitin can play a valuable role in educating our students and emphasizing the importance of academic integrity.

Register for an information session: Turnitin Brown Bag  Sept.14, 2017 1:00-1:45 pm

More sessions will be scheduled throughout the fall semester.

Thanks to members of the Langara School of Management, EdTech, and IT for piloting, implementing and administering this new tool.

For more information about Turnitin and suggestions for its use, see

For instructions on using Turnitin with D2L, see

For help designing assessments to encourage academic integrity, contact

For setting up assignments with Turnitin in D2L, contact


Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

Professional Development Opportunity from VIU

Vancouver Island University Team-Based Learning Institute

Transform Your Classroom with Team-Based Learning

August 15 and 17, 2017

Vancouver Island University, Nanaimo

Deadline to Register: August 1 

The evidence is piling up in support of the Michaelsen approach to Team-Based Learning. Team-Based Learning is a teaching strategy that lays a clear path toward greater student independence and personal responsibility for learning. In any discipline and with any content. The key? A simple, coherent set of instructional protocols and practices that, when adopted carefully, ensure that all the forces of cognitive and social engagement are aligned for high-level learning and critical thinking.

The Vancouver Island University Team-Based Learning Institute will take you through the process of transforming a traditionally taught course into a Team-Based Learning course. The August 2017 Institute is for instructors who will implement the Team-Based Learning approach beginning in Fall 2017.

 A limited number of seats are available for guests (i.e., post-secondary educators not currently on the faculty or teaching staff of Vancouver Island University). Guest fees are $375 (CAD) plus GST, which cover a two-day workshop (8:30 AM – 3:30 PM) including a light breakfast, lunch, consultations with veteran TBL practitioners, and a copy of Getting Started with Team-Based Learning (Sibley and Ostafichuk).

More Info

VIU Registration:

Please address questions to Bill Roberson (, Curriculum, Teaching and Learning Specialist, Centre for Innovation and Excellence in Learning or Liesel Knaack (, Director Centre for Innovation and Excellence in Learning


Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

Screencasting: Engaging learners with multimodalities

Screencasting involves the use of software to record the screen of your computer (or mobile device) while you narrate over the recording. It is an effective way to offer multiple representations of information (images, text, video, audio etc.) in order to widen access to learning. Making a screencast is relatively easy and requires technology that most of us have access to.  The completed file can easily be shared via learning platforms such as Kaltura, D2L or iWeb. They are great fun to create and you can invest as much or as little time as you want to produce either a professional quality screencast or one that may not be quite as slick but is perfectly acceptable for teaching and learning.

Ed Tech can support your efforts whether you are a first-timer or seasoned screencaster. We run regular workshops (the next one is on Tuesday May 30th – sign up here), we have produced a Little Guide to Screencasting and we can provide you with one-to-one support and advice on the best software and microphones to use, the planning process and how to share your screencast with your students.
Little Guide to ScreencastingSome great resources that cover screencasting in education are available, my personal favourite being Kathy Schrock’s Guide to Screencasting and Screen Recording in the Classroom.

Screencasting is a great way to make learning more fun, engaging and accessible. Whether you want to create a mini-lecture, demonstrate how a piece of software works or give assignment feedback, you are helping to ensure your students learn from a variety of  presentation methods which will be beneficial to their learning. And why not tap into your students’ creativity by getting them to create a screencast as part of their coursework?

Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

Adobe Education Exchange

Did you know that Adobe (developer of Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator and other software) offers free courses, workshops and live events for educators?

As part of our professional development, EdTech Advisors and Instructional Assistants are registering for the Digital Video course starting May 1st and we are hoping you will join us:

This professional learning course will help you develop an understanding for how video can be used as a teaching tool. You will learn how to plan, shoot, edit and publish video with ease, with some quick tips & tricks to create higher quality media. You will learn how to create different kinds of instructional video projects, and how to publish and share your videos. The videos you create will serve as models for you to create or update your curriculum and sample assignments you can bring back to the classroom.

Register at You can work independently or join us once a week to work on the course. Let us know at so we can schedule a time and commit to learning together.

Explore other resources on offer at Please note that you will need to sign up for an Adobe account if you do not already have one.

Posted in Professional Development | Tagged | Leave a comment

Students of the Future

Nice short animated video on the students of the future and how we can support them.

Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

Beginning adventures in Open Pedagogy

The generally accepted definition of ‘open pedagogy’ refers to “the universe of teaching and learning practices that are possible when you adopt OER but are impossible when you adopt traditionally copyrighted materials.” (Wiley, 2015). There are two issues with this definition. Firstly, as Wiley himself acknowledges, simply adopting OER as part of your teaching practice doesn’t necessarily result in engaging or innovative learning design. Secondly, what about student work that goes beyond the “disposable assignment” and both engages with, and is published on, the open web yet doesn’t explicitly use open licenses? Is this teaching and learning practice any less meaningful or ‘open’?

Taking this debate as her starting point Marianne Gianacopoulos (LSM and Educational Technology) recently led an engaging webinar for the Educational Technology Users Group where she talked through her first steps in adopting open pedagogy in her practice. Frustrated with both the restrictive nature of the course textbook (which students often don’t purchase for cost and other reasons) and the walled garden environment of the LMS Marianne instead engaged her students in a wide range of tools available on the open web in order to showcase their work. By adopting this approach Marianne found that her students —many of whom were international students struggling to get to grips with independent learning — were starting to become active and critical creators and co-creators of knowledge.

Marianne goes into more depth in the webinar discussing some of the web tools she used with her students and some of the challenges she faced. You can listen to a recording of the webinar here.


Wiley, D (2015) ‘Open Pedagogy: The importance of getting in the air’

LaLonde (2017) ‘Does Open Pedagogy require OER?’

Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

Back(pack) to the Future: the renaissance of ePortfolios

Tracy Penny Light at the BC Open Badges Forum

ePortfolios are one of those technologies whose popularity in post-secondary education seems to come in waves, much like the interest in virtual worlds or classroom response systems (‘clickers’). Fifteen years ago when I was a Sociology lecturer at a further education college in the UK my colleagues were constantly clamouring for an easy to use and student-centred system for capturing progression in learning. In the mid-2000s there was again a peak in interest as dedicated ePortfolio solutions such as the open-source Mahara project began to emerge. And now in 2017 we have academic associations, conferences and journals dedicated to what JISC define as “a product created by learners , a collection of digital artefacts articulating learning (both formal and informal), experiences and achievements” (JISC, 2012). But why the renaissance? Why now?

I would argue there are three main reasons for the current popularity of ePortfolios in post-secondary education:

  1. Declining influence of the LMS. Back in 2009 it was controversial to speak of the demise of the LMS/VLE. Now there is far greater awareness of the limitations of systems which essentially put control of learning into the hands of instructors, learning technologists and system administrators. The ePortfolio model turns the LMS on its head. It empowers students, encourages creativity and self-reflection and, importantly, gives them an online space that they control. To borrow an idea from the Open Badges movement ePortfolios represent a ‘digital backpack’ that students can take with them throughout their learning journey, into employment and beyond.
  2. More and easier solutions. From the late 1990s until the mid-2000s ePortfolio solutions were at best clunky and at worst inaccessible and only for the technologically adept. Now there are many alternatives ranging from dedicated ePortfolio platforms such as Pebble Pad, Pathbrite and MyeFolio to website builders like Wix, Weebly and even Google Sites. Both Capilano University and UBC use a multi-site WordPress installation for student ePortfolios which allows for both customization and ease of use in a familiar web publishing environment. Under the leadership of Meg Goodine and Lesley McCannell KPU are using Mahara in subject areas such as Nursing and Health, and Trades and Technology. Mahara has an active and responsive developer community who are committed to creating a flexible, accessible yet powerful ePortfolio platform for education.
  3. Employability and Digital Identity. In an increasingly competitive global market for jobs, employers are looking for reflective and critical students who demonstrate “soft skills” in addition to subject-specific knowledge and competencies. Students require a vehicle to communicate their talents to employers but also to show them they can create and manage a professional online digital identity. Tracy Penny Light from Thompson Rivers University has recently argued that even when students are initially resistant to creating an ePortfolio they eventually come to value the thought process involved in building it which often gives them an advantage in interview situations (BC Open Badges Forum 2017).

If ePortfolios in the age of the read/write web are helping to turn students from passive consumers of knowledge into active producers of their own learning, this is not to down-play the significant challenges ahead. Two in particular seem worthy of mention. Firstly we must guard against ePortfolios becoming nothing more than a checklist or dumping ground for skills and competencies. If that is all ePortfolios are then, in the words of a colleague, “my students already have access to an ePortfolio: it’s called LinkedIn.” Secondly, if the metaphor of a digital backpack that students take with them from K-12 through college, university and into employment is to work then ePortfolios need to be truly portable, user-owned and interoperable with other learning systems. Imagine the frustration of spending many hours creating a beautiful digital portfolio showcasing one’s skills and talents only to be told that a college or university uses a different, incompatible system?

References and Resources:

Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment

16 Education Podcasts to check out in 2017

Following on from a session on podcasting that we delivered at the recent EdTech Instructor Gathering, here is a nice summary from EdSurge News of 16 podcasts on education to look out for in 2017.

It’s a golden age of education podcasts. Teachers, professors, education innovators, and tech skeptics have switched on their microphones to share their insights and analysis—and you’ll find plenty of lively characters and fresh voices via your earbuds. After all, let’s face it, teachers can be great talkers (we mean that in a good way), and they’re also seasoned storytellers.

EdSurge News: 16 education podcasts to check out in 2017

Posted in Best Practices | Leave a comment