Monday, October 28, 2013

Electronic Communication with Students

The latest issue of the publication Online Cl@ssroom  (October 2013) offers the reader some useful information about a number of technological approaches to effective online communication with your students. Most are free for download and use. Among them are:

Jing: This is owned by the same company that produces Camtasia. In Jing, you are given the opportunity to combine audio and visual elements. It captures images, video, animations and so on and then lets you share that captured material on the web. It also allows you to record what is taking place on the screen and then send that to the web. The only limitation is that it only allows you to capture 5 minutes at a time. It works with for a hosting site. The url is and it is free (though upgraded versions do have cost).
VoiceThread: In VoiceThread, you can share a file or something else with your class, and then allow people access to ti and let them comment. Now, the interesting thing here is that they can leave voice files, not just text files; text would simply be like a regular posting board. This is a voice recorder moved to the computer. It also has built-in drawing tools, so imagine posting a complex anatomical chart and letting people leave voice comments as well as their own overlaid drawings. Pretty cool, huh. This is also free (or at cost if upgraded) at

Go Animate:  You have probably seen a Go Animate video in the past few months without realizing you were doing so. The program allows you to make animations to illustrate your educational point. Thus, you end up with a video when you are done. You can choose characters, their features, the backgrounds, and a whole lot more; in fact, you can get buried in making choices to create just the perfect teaching video. The best plan would cost around $58 per year for use. The url for this is
There is explosive growth in teaching technologies. The Center for Teaching and Learning is, at the time I write this, in process of obtaining Camtasia, so that one can put voiceover on a PowerPoint presentation. As time goes on, there will be more choices, and the above represent only a few available for your use.

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