The latest issue of the wonderful little publication Online Cl@ssroom [May 2014;14(5):2,5] offers a short article in which the author (Rob Kelly) provides the reader with information about various apps that you could use for communicating with your students. Some of the apps he lists include:
Smore (www.smore.com/): this app acts as a kind of a class blog that you can send to the students of a given class. And it can be sent in various formats, such as a text message or as an email. The article notes that one instructor uses this as a newsletter to send congratulatory information out to the class.Edmodo (www.edmodo.com): Edmodo is actually now being used extensively in the Quad City Professional Development Network for its Excellence in Teaching program. It acts in ways akin to Facebook, but it allows you to do polls, offer assignments and embed video clips. Students can post to the site as well, so what they post can be shared with the class.
GroupMe (https://groupme.com/): this is a program that gives you the ability to send a text to up to 50 people at the same time. It also allows people to respond to your text so that everyone in the network can see what is posted in response. It operates outside of college LMSs.LiveBinders (www.livebinders.com): This is a program that allows people to organize their resources on a topic-by-topic basis. Consider how this might benefit a chiropractic student- a binder on anatomy, another on physiology, etc. Given their reliance now on technology, all the resources are now in one location and easy for them to find.