Office Hours Q&A Highlights: Top 5 Courseware Questions
Posted on 8/12/20 by Laura Snider
Over the last few weeks, the Visible Body Office Hours series has continued to provide instructors with a collaborative environment where they can learn and ask questions about Visible Body Courseware.
If you haven’t been following the Office Hours videos, now is a great time to catch up! We’ve put together summaries of the top 5 questions that our recent Office Hours presenters have received.
1. How do you use the quizzing features in Courseware for online assessments and lab exams?
Many instructors had to switch to teaching online or hybrid courses during the Spring and Summer semesters, and some will likely continue to teach online during the Fall. It comes as no surprise, then, that instructors in the Q&A sessions have been eager to hear how their colleagues use Courseware’s robust quizzing features to create and conduct online exams and lab practicals.
Catherine Smithpeter, a Professor of Anatomy in the Mortuary Science department at San Antonio College, explained in detail how she uses Visible Body’s dissection quizzes in her lab exams.
The dissection quizzes allowed her students to select the bones of origin and insertion for particular muscles without having to write them all out like they would on a traditional lab exam—this made the experience simpler for students. Dissection quizzes can also require students to dissect through (remove) structures to get to the correct one. After a student has taken a dissection quiz, students and instructors can see which structures they got right and which ones they got wrong, along with the names of the incorrectly-selected structures.
Chad Howland, an instructor in the School of Physical Therapy at Hudson University, uses multiple-choice and short answer quizzes to prompt students to identify structures like they would in a lab practical with a cadaver.
Chad integrates images and screenshots from the Visible Body apps into the multiple choice and short answer quizzes he creates in Courseware.
2. How do you prevent students from cheating?
Another topic that has come up in a majority of Office Hours sessions is academic integrity—how can professors be sure that students are submitting their own work? This topic is so popular that we dedicated an entire blog post to it, but we’ll quickly go over some tips that the Office Hours presenters gave for preventing cheating.
Catherine recommended creating a question pool so that each student taking a quiz would receive a different, randomized set of questions (25 questions out of 50, for example).
Adding a time limit to quizzes is another option.
Dr. Tomer Kanan, the Course Director for A&P at the University of Illinois Chicago, discussed the possibility of using lockdown browsers, which prevent students from visiting other websites while completing an assignment or taking an exam.
Lockdown browsers may not be a great solution for every classroom, given their cost and technical requirements, but Brooke Wright, an A&P instructor at McMurray University, suggested using a team video or Zoom session to monitor students while they take an exam.
3. How do you use Visible Body visuals in lecture and presentations?
There are a number of ways instructors and students can use the Visible Body apps in lectures and presentations. For online instruction, screen recording and live screen sharing programs are the way to go.
Chad and Brooke both recommended a product called Screencast-o-matic for recording videos. The most basic version, which allows users to record up to 15 minutes of video, is free to download. Some schools have subscriptions to the full version of the product as well.
Brooke mentioned that she uses Visible Body and Screencast-o-matic to create short videos for her students, which she then posts to her YouTube channel.
Tomer uses Blackboard Collaborate during synchronous online sessions with his students. One of the great things about using this platform to screen share is that Tomer can ask his students to create presentations in the Visible Body apps to demonstrate their knowledge. Those teaching large courses with TAs or multiple instructors can also create smaller group sessions with Blackboard Collaborate, replicating the experience of breaking the class into discussion groups.
4. Does Courseware have correlations for specific textbooks?
Lots of instructors are curious about how to use Visible Body alongside their favorite textbook. Fortunately, the premade courses available to Courseware users include correlations with popular A&P, Kinesiology, Physiology, Speech Pathology, and Dental Anatomy textbooks. All instructors need to do is download them from the premade courses page (which is also accessible from inside Courseware).
Courseware’s OpenStax correlation is especially popular. Debbi Johnson, an A&P lab coordinator at Western State University, explained how the VB correlation course follows the chapter organization of the OpenStax A&P textbook and presents students with 3D content and animations from Visible Body for each topic.
5. Does Courseware have integrations with Canvas and Blackboard?
At nearly every Office Hours session, the presenters have received questions about LMS integration. As of this summer, we’re pleased to announce that Courseware now has single sign-on integration with Canvas! This means that when students sign into their Canvas course, they will be signed into Courseware automatically, and Courseware will be accessible via the navigation bar on the left-hand side of the screen in Canvas. Importing Courseware grades into Canvas will also be easier: instructors can now use the populated SIS User ID column to match up students before importing the grades.
For instructors who use another LMS, there are still ways to manually integrate your Courseware course. For example, you can use the Gradebook in Courseware to export your students’ grades in formats compatible with Blackboard, Canvas, Moodle, D2L, and other popular learning management systems.
Debbi and Emily from Visible Body walked instructors through posting links to Courseware courses and assignments in Blackboard.
Deeper integration between Courseware and Blackboard is currently in the works—stay tuned for updates!
How to attend Office Hours
Want to attend a Visible Body Office Hours session? Make sure to sign up for our email list. We’ll notify you about upcoming Office Hours sessions a few days in advance and provide a Zoom registration link. And if you don’t have time to attend, don’t worry—all the Office Hours videos get posted to our Office Hours YouTube playlist so you can stay up to date!
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