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A conversation between Kayla Siddell (XULA Library) and Bart Everson (CAT+FD) on institutional repositories.

Kayla Siddell is the Scholarly Communications and Instruction Librarian in University Library at Xavier University of Louisiana where she manages the institutional repository, the Data Visualization Lab, and consults with faculty, staff and students on their research and use of library resources and services. Previously she served as the Data Curation Librarian at Indiana State University where she served as webmaster and managed the institutional repository, CONTENTdm and Omeka websites as well as running the digitization laboratory. Her research interest include alternative data, best practices for data curation and institutional repositories, scholarly communication and information literacy. Kayla is a an Alumni of East Tennessee State University where she studied psychology as well as the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where she earned her Masters degree in Information Science.

Bart Everson is a media artist and faculty developer. His formative years were spent in Indiana and northern Sweden, and he has lived in New Orleans since 1999. He is co-creator of Rox, the first TV show on the internet. He helped found the Green Party of Louisiana as well as Friends of Lafitte Greenway, a nonprofit that has played a key role in constructing a multimodal transportation corridor through the heart of New Orleans. He is the author of Spinning in Place: A Secular Humanist Embraces the Neo-Pagan Wheel of the Year and has contributed to the collections Godless Paganism and Finding the Masculine in Goddess' Spiral. Since 2010, he has organized workshops and initiatives to promulgate contemplative practice and pedagogy on Xavier's campus. His recent work draws on integrative learning, activism, critical perspectives on technology, and Earth-based spiritual paths.

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Coming soon!

Drive Logo

If you've been using Google Drive (and who isn't?) you may have been notified that the Google Drive application is going away. To clarify, the Google Drive service will continue, but the Google Drive desktop app (that little piece of software that syncs your local files with the cloud) is being discontinued.

Xavier users have reported that Google is urging them to switch to a new app, Drive File Stream. However, there is another app, also made my Google, which fills much the same function: Backup & Sync.

What to do?

Google is pushing Drive Stream as the solution for organizations, while marketing Backup & Sync to individuals. However, both currently work on Xavier campus. Fortunately, there is a handy comparison of the features offered by these two products, so you can make your own decision.

Compare Backup and Sync & Drive File Stream

Take your pick and make the switch. But don't delay! Support for the old app officially ended last month.

Sue Frantz
A conversation with Sue Frantz of Highline Community College on technology for teaching and learning.

I have a minor addiction to new technology. But not just any technology. I’m looking for technology (ideally, free) that either makes my job easier or makes it easier for my students to learn.

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Three books Sue recently enjoyed reading:

...continue reading "Conversation #66: Sue Frantz on Technology for Teaching and Learning"

In an EdTech Magazine article, Meg Conlan reported that nowadays students are expecting to use technology in college. She referenced a McGraw-Hill Education Workforce Readiness Survey which shows that 52 percent of students surveyed believe that their use of technology during college classes and study sessions will help them secure a job.

Check out the McGraw-Hill Education infographic below for more technology-focused highlights from the Workforce Readiness Survey.

infographic

You can read Meg’s Technology Use Boosts Students’ Confidence in Their Job Prospects article here.

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Drive Logo

In a big win for Xavier faculty, ITC recently "opened up" Google Drive for global collaboration.

What does this mean?

As you may know, Google Drive is a service for storing, syncing and sharing files. When Xavier adopted G Suite (formerly Google Apps), all Xavier users got an account allowing them store files in Google Drive. You can access your files at drive.google.com.

However, files stored in Google Drive could only be shared with other Xavier users — until now. Now you can share your files with colleagues at other institutions around the world. (Please note that the new policy applies only to faculty at this time.) We anticipate this will greatly aid in your efforts at scholarly collaboration.

What's the benefit?

Instead of emailing files back and forth, you can share a file in Google Drive. If you grant editing access to others, they can make changes; Google keeps the file in sync. You are less likely to run into the confusion that commonly arises when different versions of a document are edited by multiple contributors.

How to do it?

Sharing files with Google Drive is pretty easy, but not entirely goof-proof.

First, naturally enough, you have to have some files in Google Drive to share! I'm going to assume you already do; if that's not the case, a basic tutorial is available.

Second, navigate to the file you want to share in the Google Drive web interface. Remember, you can access your files at drive.google.com.

Finally, click the share icon for that file. (It looks like a little person with a plus sign next to their head.) You'll be prompted to enter the names or email addresses of the people you want to share with. (Names will generally only work for others in the Xavier system. For anyone outside Xavier, you'll need to use their email address.) You'll also want to specify the level of sharing. Do you want them to be able to view the file only, or to make comments, or to make edits? It's up to you.

But what about security?

Files uploaded to Google Drive are stored in the Cloud — on servers controlled by Google. You may have some concerns about what this means.

According to Google, your files are located in "secure data centers." There are some clear advantages. If your computer (or other device) is damaged or misplaced, you don't lose your data. You can get still get to your files once you get your hands on a new device.

Google also stipulates that "your files are private unless you share them."

When using Google Drive for collaboration, you'll want to observe the same common sense guidelines that you use when sharing information with anyone. If the data is sensitive, think twice before sharing it.

How can I learn more?

  • Learn more online.
  • Keep an eye out for ITC workshops.
  • CAT+FD has a workshop on collaborative authoring planned for Thursday, 16 March 2017; stay tuned!

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by Bart Everson

Embrace Keyboard Shortcuts

Everyone know that I am a hug(e) advocate of keyboard shortcuts. They are easy to learn and will give your productivity a boost. If you really enjoy sitting in front of your computer, and want to spend more time doing that every day while getting less done, then by all means ignore them — but the rest of us will want to memorize our keyboard shortcuts.

Everyone also knows that I do not use PowerPoint, have never used it, and generally avoid Microsoft products as if I was afflicted with a life-threatening allergy.

So that's why you've never heard me talk about keyboard shortcuts for PowerPoint.

Fortunately Scott Schwertly, famed presentation expert, has compiled a list for you. These are keyboard shortcuts you can use when actually presenting with PowerPoint. Extremely handy, if you ever do that. Check it out.

Last week CAT's own Bart Everson gave an invited talk at Xavier's long-running series on Across the Curriculum Thinking.

Watch Social Media, Social Justice on Vimeo

(See our wiki for related resources and credits.)

In this season of gift-giving, I thought it would be a good idea to introduce you to a couple of gadgets that can positively impact people who are in emergency situations such as the recent typhoon in the Philippines.

Gravity Light (from Deciwatt.org) generates light from gravity. Using a sandbag for three seconds gives 25 minutes of light and the procedure can be repeated over and over. Imagine the uses during the nights after a severe storm when one knows electricity will not be available for days or weeks.

Another fun and practical solution is SOCCKET, a useable soccer ball that is a portable generator. You build power by playing with the ball and then you use it as a light source. So kids affected by the typhoon can enjoy a few moments of being a child again while storing up light for the family to see by.

If you know of any other projects of this type, please feel free to share and I wish everyone a very Happy New Year!

P.S. Thanks to lesliefisher.com for the great sessions at LACUE, including one on gadgets. More to follow. KNN

Sue Frantz

Today CAT welcomes Sue Frantz who will be showcasing some essential technology in The Academic's Toolbox. We're learning plenty which we'll be sure to share in the weeks and months ahead.

Download Conversation #18

Dave Yearwood

A conversation with Dave Yearwood of University of North Dakota, on teaching, learning and online engagement.

The one thing I'm really cautious about is making sure these technologies are not used as souped-up dump trucks. Meaning you load them up with content and you just drive it to where students are and you drop off the content and say to students, "Now you work with it." That's the one thing I try to stress that we have to be careful about not doing with our students.

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