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Creating an OER Textbook by Cara Chang

Wed, 2018-11-28 11:15

The following post is written by Cara Chang, Leeward CC English Instructor.

This semester (Fall 2018) is my first semester teaching and piloting a new OER textbook for English 209: Business Writing.  Prior to teaching the class, I found two possible OER textbooks for my class on OER Commons.  The first textbook was Business Writing by Lumen Learning and the second textbook was Business Communication for Success from Open Textbook Library. I found both books to have important information; the Business Writing textbook focused more on writing skills and concepts while the Business Communication for Success text focused more on oral communication. I also noticed that there was some overlap in the content in both textbooks; in fact, some of the chapters in both textbooks were exactly the same.  As I started thinking about what textbook I wanted my students to use, it became apparent that both textbooks had something to offer. Though most of the SLOs in the course focused on writing skills, one of ENG 209’s SLOs mentioned delivering an oral report, which my students would be doing for their final assignment.  Therefore, I figured it would be helpful for my students to have access to material on both written and oral communication skills.

In April and May of 2018, I attended a workshop led by UH OER Technologist, Billy Meinke, who shared about Pressbooks, which is a simple e-book production software.  He shared an example of a UH Mānoa Nutrition textbook, which had used Pressbooks, and I really liked the appearance, layout, and clean look of the textbook. I also liked how compatible and easily accessible the textbook was on my phone since I knew that would mean that students could also easily access the textbook.  I also learned that some OER materials could be easily imported into Pressbooks, which would mean that I would not necessarily need to create material from scratch.

I spent July and August creating the textbook for the business writing class.  After planning the course schedule and looking through the two OER textbooks, I decided what information I wanted to include and exclude.  I ended up keeping information from both books and combining both textbooks into one textbook while organizing the information in an easy to understand way.  I was able to do this quite easily by importing one textbook into Pressbooks, but I wasn’t able to do this for the other textbook, which I ended up copying, pasting, and organizing in a cohesive manner.  The book starts with general content surrounding communication, covers the writing process and types of business writing, narrows down to specific writing rules and conventions, and concludes with presentations.  Lastly, I made a cover page for my textbook and named the textbook Business Writing for Success, which is a combination of both of the textbook titles.

Overall, I liked working with Pressbooks.  It seemed fairly easy to use, and the layout was visually appealing and organized.  Furthermore, it seemed to be easily accessible for my students. When I finished creating the textbook, I included the textbook as an external website link in Laulima.  My students seem to like the textbook. They like that they don’t have to pay for a textbook and that all of the course materials are located in Laulima. To be honest, I’m not sure they really utilized the textbook as much as I hoped.  However, they did have group presentations on how to give presentations where each group was required to read and present on an assigned chapter in the book. I plan to have them take a survey regarding the textbook at the end of the semester, so I know how to better improve it.

While teaching the course and using the book for the first time, I came to realize how I would like to revise the textbook to make it better.  As I progressed through the semester, I realized that there was not enough business writing examples for my students. I ended up creating examples for my students that we would view, discuss, and critique in class.  Furthermore, I also realized that there are possible chapters I would like to add in the textbook. For example, I had my business writing students create a website and blog in class, and I needed to find external websites for students to read to assist them in this process.  Finally, there is room for creating and curating more lectures/videos for students who wish for supplemental materials.

In conclusion, I learned a lot from creating an OER textbook using Pressbooks.  It was user friendly and allowed enough customization for my needs. I would definitely consider utilizing Pressbooks to create another OER textbook in the future if I need to, and I invite other faculty members to participate in this valuable experience, as well.

What We Have Learned About CES – Part 5 (Final One for Fall 2018)

Wed, 2018-11-14 08:46

CES was released on Monday, October 29, 2018. Together, we are learning about this new system. Some wonderful hints and questions have already been shared. By communicating them to you, I hope it will help you as you set up your CES for your class(es).

This helpful hint was submitted by Matt Egami

Instructors may have different sets of questions for different types of courses, therefore, in the question pool, I separated my lecture questions from my lecture/lab questions by creating a question of ********* to separate the two. See screenshot.

Note: See related hint by Michael Oishi on adding different sets of questions for different types of courses.

Deadline for Instructors to setup CES for this semester is Thursday, November 15, 2018!

After Thursday, you will no longer be able to add questions to your evaluations.

Students will take the surveys from Monday, November 19, 2018 to Thursday, December 6, 2018.

This is the final CES newsletter for this semester. Thank you for reading them and for sharing your hints and questions with others.

We are compiling a list of suggestions to improve CES. Please send your suggestions to Leanne or Adam by Friday, November 16, 2018.

More information at Leeward CC CES site.

What We Have Learned About CES – Part 4

Thu, 2018-11-08 11:38

CES was released on Monday, October 29, 2018. Together, we are learning about this new system. Some wonderful hints and questions have already been shared. By communicating them to you, I hope it will help you as you set up your CES for your class(es).

This question was submitted by Albert Chan

I have already constructed my survey with relevant questions, ready to go. Do I need to do anything else before it is released to the students? And, after they receive the notification, may I remind them to take the survey?

After you created your survey, you are ready to go. You do not have to do anything else to release it to students. One common mistake is to only enter the questions into the question pool. Be sure that you add the questions to each of your surveys. It is a two-step process: 1. add questions to question pool, 2. select questions for your survey.

Students will receive automated messages from the UH system to take the surveys. Students will be taking the surveys from Nov 19, 2018 – Dec 6, 2018. I like your idea to remind your students (in class and by email) to take the survey.

Will CES provide instructors a running total/percentage of how many students have completed a given survey, similar to eCAFE?

Once the students start taking the survey, when you login to CES you will see updated statistics for each of your classes. It will look similar to this screen. Each CRN has the number of students enrolled, completed, and opted-out.

Please continue to share your helpful hints with me and I will share it out.
Email Leanne Riseley: leannech@hawaii.edu

More information at Leeward CC CES site.

What We Have Learned About CES – Part 3

Wed, 2018-11-07 14:58

CES was released on Monday, October 29, 2018. Together, we are learning about this new system. Some wonderful hints and questions have already been shared. By communicating them to you, I hope it will help you as you set up your CES for your class(es).

This question was submitted by Kermit the Frog (aka Dottie Sunio)

Can you tell me how I can copy all of the questions from eCafe to CES?  It appears that I have to do it one question at a time.

Yes, you are correct. If you have used eCafe in the past, you will have to copy/paste each question one at a time into CES. Your previous eCafe evaluations are archived and can be accessed by logging into CES, then clicking My Surveys –> My Survey Results. Select one of your past surveys and copy/paste your questions into the CES  question pool.

You only have to copy your questions into CES this semester. In future semesters your questions/surveys will be in CES and it will be much quicker to create your surveys.

Please continue to share your helpful hints with me and I will share it out.
Email Leanne Riseley: leannech@hawaii.edu

More information at Leeward CC CES site.

What We Have Learned About CES – Part 2

Tue, 2018-11-06 08:57

CES was released on Monday, October 29, 2018. Together, we are learning about this new system. Some wonderful hints and questions have already been shared. By communicating them to you, I hope it will help you as you setup your CES for your class(es).

This question was submitted by John Signor

May I still use the traditional hard copy evaluation forms this semester and switch to CES next semester?

Yes, you may still use hard copy evaluation forms this semester. Please be aware that your students will be emailed a link to a CES evaluation for your course with a single question (How would you rate the overall quality of this course?).

This is a general question about Early College classes.

Can I use CES for my Early College class?

Absolutely. Early College classes all have CRNs in Banner. Therefore, you may create a CES evaluation for your Early College class just as you would for any other Leeward CC class.

Please continue to share your helpful hints with me and I will share it out.
Email Leanne Riseley: leannech@hawaii.edu

More information at Leeward CC CES site.

What We Have Learned About CES

Thu, 2018-11-01 16:45

CES was released on Monday, October 29, 2018. Together, we are learning about this new system. Some wonderful hints and questions have already been shared. By communicating them to you, I hope it will help you as you setup your CES for your class(es).

This was helpful hint was submitted by Michael Oishi
The order of the questions in the question bank is the order in which they appear in the survey.  

I have a slightly different set of questions for my DE courses than I do for my face-to-face class courses.  While several of the questions are similar, they are worded slightly differently. Since I am currently in the middle of a promotion cycle and have already created tables and graphs of my evaluation results, I would like to keep the order of CES questions the same as in my previous evaluations.  The problem, however, is that when new questions are added to the bank, they are randomly added to and organized in the bank. To separate the questions for my face-to-face questions classes from my DE classes, I reorganized the questions in my question bank. I put all the questions for my face-to-face classes first, followed by the questions for my DE classes.

A hack for instructors who also have different sets of questions for different types of courses they teach is to first add ALL questions for all their surveys into the question bank.  Then go back and reorder the questions–perhaps by listing questions for face-to-face classes first, then all questions for DE courses.  That way, when one has to select the questions for a survey from the bank, all the questions are generally separated and organized in the order one wants.

Like many things, CES is a bit time-consuming in the beginning, but thankfully much easier and faster once things are set up.

This question was submitted by Donna Matsumoto

My evaluation for my accelerated ENG 200 class is Turned Off. Will I be able to use the CES for that class?  Here is a screenshot of what is in CES.

Accelerated classes and other non-traditional classes have been set to end on 11/23/18. As the instructor, you should create your evaluation now. The evaluation will open to your students two weeks prior to the end of the course which will be 11/9/18. On that date, your survey will be turned on.

This was a helpful hint submitted by Kale’a Silva.

I feel like students rush through course evaluations if I give it to them at the end of class on the last day. So, what I plan to do with CES, is to give them the first 10 minutes of class to complete it while I step out. Then, I’ll resume class after they complete the evaluation. That way, I hope to get 100% participation and more meaningful responses if students have time and don’t feel rushed.

Note: CES is now mobile friendly and can be completed on a smartphone.

Please continue to share your helpful hints with me and I will share it out.
Email Leanne Riseley: leannech@hawaii.edu

More information at Leeward CC CES site.

Sharing about Leeward OER Creation

Mon, 2018-10-22 09:04

The following post is written by Kelsie Aguilera, Leeward CC OER Creation Award Winner for 2018

Last semester, I was honored (and thrilled!) to receive the Leeward OER Creation Award (LOERCA). The goal of the LOERCA is to develop original OER materials where none exists or revise and remix existing OER with the addition of original content. I highly recommend applying for one of the many Leeward CC OER Award programs when the application periods open up again this coming spring semester; they are a great way to stay motivated and focused while transitioning to or developing OER.

I was graciously awarded the LOERCA in recognition of the following project I am working on: I, along with a team of three other managing editors, am developing a high-quality, open access biological anthropology textbook with 100% original written content that will be written and peer-reviewed by experts in the field—a project that will be the first of its kind and slated to be ready for use in Fall 2019. This edited book will be available free of charge under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 International License and housed on a website administered by the Society for Anthropology in Community Colleges (SACC), a professional anthropology organization that is part of the American Anthropological Association. In addition, this edited book can be made available on the University of Hawaii Open Educational Resources (OER) Repository and can be uploaded to UH Pressbooks. We finally decided on a title for our book, Explorations: An Open Invitation to Biological Anthropology.

The idea for this projected originated at the 2017 SACC conference in Boise, Idaho. On the bus to an archaeological site, I was chatting with an anthropologist from the California State University system about how great it would be if there were an OER textbook for biological anthropology. After the conference, when we got back home to our respective institutions, rather than just ignore our big idea, we decided to take action and make this textbook a reality. It is so exciting to be where we are now with the project. Over 25 expert authors have submitted chapters for our book, some of whom are big names in anthropology. And dozens more are supporting us as reviewers, illustrators, or designers. We are also fortunate that money will not be a problem for our project; we were quickly awarded the first grant we applied for, a $25,000 Innovation Grant from Minnesota State. If you decide to take on an OER project, no matter at what scale, you might be surprised at the tremendous support you will receive from Leeward CC and your larger communities. For example, receiving the LOERCA was unexpected but much appreciated. As a managing editor and author of this textbook, the Leeward CC OER Award program is supporting the countless hours I have put in to make this textbook for our students.

Although the cost savings to students is obvious, I want to mention another important contribution that our project will make. In the field of biological anthropology, there are less than a handful of “classic” introductory biological anthropology textbooks, some of which are now in their double-digit edition. While I certainly received a solid education as an undergraduate via one of these “classic” textbooks, in what ways are we limiting the voices that teach by privileging the voices of a select few? How many generations of anthropology students have been taught by the same voices with the same perspectives? Our textbook challenges this model by providing our students with a fresh multiplicity of voices, many of which have been traditionally underrepresented in biological anthropology textbooks. OER democratizes not only who gets to learn but also who gets to teach.  

Lastly, a note of encouragement for those who are considering transitioning to or developing OER. The first step is always the most daunting but you don’t have to take that first step alone! There are so many resources at Leeward to assist you along the way. Don’t be shy in reaching out to the Educational Media Center, Library, OER Campus Committee, or me!

Multiple Realities

Mon, 2018-10-01 16:13

Infographic XR VR MR AR

Have you noticed the subtle expansion in extended reality or XR in our daily lives?   Extended Reality or XR is the umbrella concept that covers a range of modified or extended experiences that take true reality and either recreate or overlay computer generated content.  This content can be broadly categorized into Virtual Reality, Mixed Reality, and Augmented Reality.

Virtual Reality is an established learning technology, however it can be a large investment in time and money.  VR does has many practical applications, and is worth doing in particularly situations where cost and safety are concerns.  For example investing resources in developing a VR for training an airline ground crew to service an airplane. Prior to VR an airline might have to remove a plane from service for crew training, in addition, using an airplane for training could prove costly if a training accident occurred.  In this example a fully immersive virtual reality learning experience may be worth doing.

Augmented Reality is an emerging technology and is a relatively accessible.   Augmented reality overlays computer generated content over a live image. For example the yellow First Down line on an football television broadcast or the strike zone box on a baseball broadcast.  Educators can experiment with an augmented reality tool called Zappar (first month free).  With the Zappar app, students can waive a mobile tablet or phone over an instructor setup image, illustration or text and have a video, audio, image, or web link pop up.  Static paper is a thing of the past, Zappar can bring them to life and it is relatively easy to do.   We recently shared it at Tech It Out Day 2018, if you are interested in Zappar and its applications for supporting student learning materials let us know.

Mixed Reality fills the space between computer generated world (VR) and real world with computer overlay (AR).  Like VR, Mixed Reality also requires a large investment of time and resources to develop. An example of MR is a theme park experience which mixes kinesthetic and sensory markers to enhance your experience.  For example watching a computer generated visual while physically being moved, or sprayed with water or sniffing scented air.

 

Free Webinar: Inclusive PDFs by Design

Thu, 2018-09-06 13:56

Tuesday, September 18, 2018
8:00 am – 9:00 am HST
Presenter: Luis Pérez, AEM Center

Designers of PDF documents take great pride in creativity and visual appeal. Did you know that PDFs can be accessible to readers with disabilities without sacrificing design? And when your materials are accessible, you’ll reach a wider and more diverse audience. Join this webinar to see how accessible PDF design is responsible, inclusive, and – yes – attractive.

Unable to attend the webinar?  No worries!  A recording will be available on the webinar’s Event Page approximately one week after the webinar.  An announcement will be sent when the recording is available.

Register

Free OER Webinars

Tue, 2018-09-04 10:44

Butte College is hosting a series of free “Introduction to OER” Webinars.  It is a 4-part series that is focused on orienting faculty who are new to OER.

The workshops are Fridays from 9 AM – 11 AM HST Time (Note: 11/9 and 12/14 are 10 AM – 12 PM due to daylight savings time).  The login for the webinars is: https://cccconfer.zoom.us/j/458705302

Dates and tentative Topics:

9/28 – Introduction to OER and Open Access

10/12 –Licensing and Search Strategies

11/9 – Universal Design and Accessibility

12/14 – Curation using Pressbooks and Open Pedagogy

More information is found on the Intro to OER Course Website: https://canvas.instructure.com/courses/1123092

Registration is not necessary. Webinars are free. Please feel free to share with your colleagues.