Math and Computing Instructors Explore Teaching Strategies to Increase Student Engagement with Digital Tools at Cengage Learning’s Summer Institute

Boston, MA – July 31, 2014 – Higher education instructors gathered in Chicago last week at the Cengage Learning Summer Institute. Using the latest Cengage Learning digital solutions, including Enhanced WebAssign and SAM, which will be in use in the upcoming school year, math and computing instructors learned strategies that drive student engagement and student success. Marking its fifth year, the annual faculty development event is part of Cengage Learning’s ongoing commitment to ensure customer success using technology in classrooms.

“According to a past survey conducted by Inside Higher Ed, more than 60 percent of faculty report that they have ‘more excitement than fear’ about e-textbooks and e-resources,” said Joanne Terhaar, Senior Director, Digital Training and Implementation, Cengage Learning. “Our goal is to enhance that excitement and eliminate any fear through personalized services and in-depth training opportunities, such as last week’s Summer Institute. Over the course of two days, instructors became more comfortable with our digital products and more confident in their use and impact. This will help them better engage their students throughout the year.”

During the two-day event, instructors of Calculus, Developmental Mathematics, Pre-Calculus, Advanced Mathematics and Computing, came from across the country to collaborate on effective teaching strategies. Training specialists and faculty peers held digital solution-specific sessions, and presented hands-on applications for managing a course and increasing student performance. Speakers at the event shared experiences and ideas for engaging students, increasing productivity and impacting overall success with technology.

Yvonne Leonard, Computer Science Department Chair at Coastal Carolina Community College, attended the Summer Institute and will be using Cengage Learning’s SAM solution for mastering Microsoft Office skills and computer concepts with her students in the Fall. “I learned all kinds of new skills at the Summer Institute — how to set up sessions and assessments, schedule exams, and how to use SAM from an administrative and instructor level,” she stated. Explaining the benefit of using the product, she said, “My students are going to love it this semester because they can go back and revisit concepts they are having difficulty grasping. It allows students to keep reviewing it again and again until they learn it!”

Cengage Learning delivers personalized services and training opportunities to faculty through an in-house staff of professional educators, instructional designers, digital consultants, implementation and training specialists and technical support agents. For more information about Cengage Learning and the personalized services available to instructors and students, including upcoming events, visit http://services.cengage.com/.

About Cengage Learning
Cengage Learning is a leading educational content, technology, and services company for the higher education and K-12, professional and library markets worldwide. The company provides superior content, personalized services and course-driven digital solutions that accelerate student engagement and transform the learning experience. Cengage Learning is headquartered in Boston, MA with operations in more than 20 countries around the world. www.cengage.com.

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Blackmagic Design Announces ATEM Camera Control Now Available

Now customers with ATEM production switchers can control their cameras via the SDI connection

Fremont, CA – July 31, 2014 – Blackmagic Design today announced the immediate availability of ATEM Switchers Update 6.0 which adds support for controlling cameras from ATEM production switchers via the program feed to the camera. ATEM Switchers Update 6.0 is available now free of charge from the Blackmagic Design website.

Until now the ability to control cameras from the live production switcher was only available to extremely high end broadcasters who had the costly infrastructure that allowed this feature. With the new ATEM Camera Control software update, ATEM live production switchers can now control cameras via a new open standard protocol sent to the camera via the return program feed.

ATEM Camera Control is compatible with the new Blackmagic Studio Camera when running software update v1.8.2 or later. The Blackmagic Studio Camera HD and Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K models feature both optical fiber and regular SDI program return feeds to the camera and the commands from the switcher are broadcast to all cameras via this program return feed.

The Blackmagic Studio Camera can be controlled via a regular CCU style of control, however to allow even greater creativity, the Blackmagic Studio Camera has a fully featured DaVinci Resolve primary color corrector built in featuring the same YRGB style grading that is found on DaVinci Resolve.

This means the switcher operator has incredible control over the cameras and not only can settings like focus and iris be remotely set with extreme accuracy, but the operator has full lift, gamma and gain controls in full YRGB colorspace just like a full color corrector. Now any colorist that is familiar with DaVinci Resolve color grading can use their creative skills on live production work.

This new ATEM Camera Control with color correction will allow customers to not only get perfect matching between cameras on live production, but operators can also take into account changing light conditions, which is common on outdoor events. Then when customers need to generate creative looks, such as for music videos, they can push the correction further for exciting looks all in real time.

The stylish control panel in the ATEM Software Control allows normal operation of the ATEM live production switcher, but then at any time the user can select the camera tab and then see the controls for each camera. They get a familiar CCU style of interface with easy control of black and iris settings on the camera as well as focus. When controlling a camera, this camera is automatically output using one of the switchers aux. outputs so the operator can use this aux. output to local monitoring.

When more refined and creative looks are desired, the user can then push a button and the CCU style interface will expand out to a fully featured primary color corrector interface, that allows color grading using an interface very familiar to any DaVinci Resolve colorist. Every setting creatively is the same as DaVinci Resolve as the processing is the same. With the color corrector built into the camera, customers get much greater creative control because the color corrector gets full bit depth and colorspace direct from the camera’s sensor.

“Since we first demonstrated the ATEM camera control, the response has been amazing, and broadcasters have quickly recognized the advantage of the Blackmagic Studio Camera’s design and interoperability with ATEM switchers as well as the incredible color corrector built right inside the camera itself!”, said Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design, “Now they can have full control without running any extra cables using the new SDI based protocol. All that is required is a single thin SDI optical fiber or SDI cable. This is not just a simple CCU style of color adjustment but a full featured DaVinci primary color corrector built right into the camera itself. The benefit to the customer is that exciting creative looks can be achieved in live production, that previously were only possible in post production. I’m very excited to release this software and cannot wait to see what people do with it creatively!”

ATEM Camera Control Key Features

Color control for up to 20 cameras.
Familiar Da Vinci YRGB style live color grading including lift, gamma and gain control.
CCU style operation for the most commonly used operations of iris and pedestal levels.
Remote gain settings.
Remote shutter speed settings.
Coarse setting for iris.
Remote white balance selection.
Remote focus.
Remote iris.
Aux switching for camera preview allowing automatic local monitoring for grading.
Clear “On Air” indication in user interface reduces the possibility of mistakes.
Lock function stops accidental changes.
Availability and Price

ATEM Switchers Update 6.0 with the new camera control features is available now for all ATEM live production switcher customers free of charge for download from the Blackmagic Design web site. To use this software with the new Blackmagic Studio Camera, the Blackmagic Studio Camera will also require the latest software update 1.8.2 or later that is also available free of charge.

Press Photography

Product photos of the ATEM production switchers, the ATEM camera control software user interface, Blackmagic Studio Cameras as well as other Blackmagic Design products, are available at www.blackmagic-design.com/press/images

About Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design creates the world’s highest quality video editing products, digital film cameras, color correctors, video converters, video monitoring, routers, live production switchers, disk recorders, waveform monitors and real time film scanners for the feature film, post production and television broadcast industries. Blackmagic Design’s DeckLink capture cards launched a revolution in quality and affordability in post production, while the company’s Emmy™ award winning DaVinci color correction products have dominated the television and film industry since 1984. Blackmagic Design continues ground breaking innovations including 6G-SDI and 12G- SDI products and stereoscopic 3D and Ultra HD workflows. Founded by world leading post production editors and engineers, Blackmagic Design has offices in the USA, UK, Japan, Singapore and Australia. For more information, please go to www.blackmagicdesign.com

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5 great ed-tech faculty resources on YouTube

These YouTube resources can help college faculty deliver instruction more effectively and enhance the student experience

faculty-youtube-resourcesEducators, administrators, and students are using social media for marketing purposes and to improve learning and deliver instruction more effectively.

This learning dynamic can occur by creating LinkedIn pages, communicating about assignments and classroom discussion on Facebook and Twitter, and engaging with multimedia by posting Vine videos.

Embracing mobile technology and social media in the proper, academic setting can prove productive for learning and growth.

Videos are some of the best teaching tools available to teachers and students, and YouTube offers a seemingly infinite number of educational channels on varying topics.

Take a look at the following five YouTube resources on technology and innovation in education. If you feel that we are missing some terrific resources, please share your views and opinions with us in the comments section below and by joining the conversation on Twitter @ecampusnews.

(Next page: Five YouTube resources for faculty)

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The college tour is about to undergo a virtual makeover

Oculus Rift, an emerging virtual reality headset platform, is taking developer YouVisit’s virtual campus tours to the next dimension, raising questions about the evolution of traditional college recruitment and selection techniques.

collegeOculus Rift might sound like the name of an old, campy sci-fi movie, but this emerging technology is positioning itself to be no joke when it comes to the future of recruitment in higher education.

The implications of Oculus Rift’s technology are far greater than the possibility that students may spend their time playing video games in a virtual world rather than completing their homework.

Instead, thanks to leading third party developer YouVisit, Oculus Rift could present a technological shift  in college recruitment and the selection process.

YouVisit was founded in 2009 by three former roommates from international backgrounds who once had trouble figuring out what colleges in the United States had to offer. YouVisit co-founder and CEO Abi Mandelbaum explained that the team approached several top universities about building virtual walking tours for their campuses in order to “help international students find out what schools would be the perfect fit for them.”

YouVisit, since that time, has gained traction, now having designed more than 1,000 virtual tours for top universities not only in the United States, but around Europe, North America, South America, Asia, and Africa.

The company partners directly with colleges and universities to ensure the tours are representative of the university’s mission, and then sends YouVisit crews to map out the campuses in detail.

From start to finish, YouVisit will have a tour up and running on both the college’s and the company’s website within a month, on average.

YouVisit also released an app optimizing their tours for viewing on mobile devices.

(Next Page: How Oculus Rift takes YouVisit to the next level and enhances college recruitment)

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Mission is key to MOOCs, online programs

CIOs, IT leaders say the key to expanding online is knowing your goals and vision

mission-online-MOOCsBy now, most colleges and universities know that providing some type of online program—fully online, MOOCs, or blended learning—is critical to staying current in today’s changing higher ed landscape. But how do you determine your institution’s online readiness, and how can MOOCs work for everyone?

According to Elke Leeds, assistant vice president for Technology Enhanced Learning and executive director of the Distance Learning Center at Kennesaw State University, during her session at Campus Technology 2014, the one question all institutions must first ask themselves is: “Why would we want to do this?”

“We’re not Harvard or MIT, we’re a teaching-focused state university that produces teachers, nurses and business school grads; we don’t have classes like ‘Advanced computer analytics programming,’” Leeds explained. “So the questions that became most important to us were: ‘What is the value proposition, and what kind of MOOC is right for us?’”

For Kennesaw, the value was in most institutions’ perceived values of offering a MOOC, such as increasing enrollment, strengthening brand, increasing community engagement, promoting lifelong learning, and promoting higher education relevance.

But the course had to fit, and so did the goal of the MOOC.

“We’re credentialing-based and degree-based. We believe in offering at least the option of credentials, or peer review, so we had to devise a way to do just that with our first MOOC, ‘K-12 Blended and Online Learning.’”

(Next page: Designing a MOOC for all learners)

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5 PD tips for the new semester

Preparing to share the training and tips with students, faculty, and staff will help them get the most out of campus technology in the fall

professional-development-tipsFaculty often want to learn more about technology integration, but have difficulty finding the time, or knowing where to start.

Many understand the basics of technology in higher education, but would like to see new ideas. They are faced with providing more training to more users with fewer resources.

To alleviate some of this stress I have compiled five professional development tips for the new semester.

Share Technology Resources

You can help students learn the technology needed in classrooms without using valuable teaching time. Simply provide access to the training they’ll need to complete the assignment, such as Excel, APA or MLA citations, or how to give effective presentations.

Once you find the training you need, sharing it is easy:

  • Post it on your blog
  • Mention the training in your syllabus
  • Use integration options to post in your learning management system (LMS) to make integration simple

(Next page: More PD tips to improve classroom instruction)

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Why are colleges getting free Big Data services?

Many colleges and universities are finding that Big Data analytics services aren’t included in the axiom preaching that there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

colleges-big-data[Editor’s note: This story was originally posted in February, as a host of Big Data companies offered their free or low-cost services to colleges and universities. With colleges launching Big Data degree programs and companies hoping for students to familiarize themselves with data analytics programs, we thought this was a good time to re-introduce the corporate interest in a burgeoning educational field.]

Hoping to mold a generation of college graduates specializing in analyzing data using certain proprietary Big Data software, companies are offering their services for free to campuses nationwide.

The latest offer is from California-based Predixion Software, which announced its Predixion in the Classroom (PIC) initiative Jan. 28.

Students at St. Joseph University, University of Maryland University College, the University of Washington, and the University of Western Michigan will have free access to Predixion’s predictive model software and related services through the PIC program.

“The expectation is that students who use their software in class will be more apt to want to use it in their future careers, so these companies see this as an investment,” Murray Jennex, a professor in computer science at San Diego State University, said in an interview with CruxialCIO.

Predixion’s offer to U.S. schools is the latest from companies leading the way in data analytics as universities look for ways to use that data to streamline campus infrastructure and trim student and institutional costs.

IBM announced in August that it has has added nine new institutions to its academic partnerships that focus on Big Data. More than 1,000 universities around the world are involved in similar collaborations with IBM.

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The next big innovation in higher ed is…collaboration?

College and IT leaders say it’s not about the next tech, but about how teamwork and collaboration can revolutionize postsecondary education

collaboration-institution-hrabowskiPoetry, personal stories, laughs and boisterous arm and hand gestures are not what I was expecting at 8 in the morning, and, I’m nervous to admit, from a university president. Neither was the conversation aimed at inspiring collaboration among all departments and lessening boundaries and hierarchy.

“Lift up your eyes upon
This day breaking for you.
Give birth again
To the dream.”

That was Maya Angelou, for those who were wondering,” opened Dr. Freeman Hrabowski at the 2014 Campus Technology conference in Boston, “and I like to do this: tell stories and inspire. It’s part of being a good leader.”

And if anyone would know good leadership, it is, in fact, this man: not only is he the president of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County—one of the most successful colleges in the U.S. today thanks to stellar focuses on STEM and graduation rates, but also one of TIME Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People in the World,” and one of seven of the Washington Post’s “Top American Leaders,” among many notable awards and presidential recognitions.

And did Hrabowski decide to discuss the influence of MOOCs? Maybe Big Data? Or maybe what he really wanted to impart was some advice on implementing analytics? Sure, brief mentions were noted. But what’s most important to one of U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Leaders” is a concept often missing in higher education: teamwork and collaboration—a theme prevalent amongst all other sessions at this prestigious higher ed conference.

(Next page: The importance of collaboration; learning from startups)

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University of Miami and UHealth Standardize on Aruba Wi-Fi Across All Campuses and Medical Facilities

University of Miami and UHealth Standardize on Aruba Wi-Fi Across All Campuses and Medical Facilities

Leading Private Research and Health Organization Taps Aruba to Connect Users in 200 Buildings Across 11 Million Square Feet

SUNNYVALE, Calif. – July 29, 2014 – Aruba Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARUN) today announced that the University of Miami, a private research institution and the top-ranked school in Florida, and its health system, UHealth-University of Miami Health System, have selected Aruba for an organization-wide wireless network upgrade covering 200 buildings and 11 million square feet of the University’s three main campuses, as well as UHealth’s three hospitals and two dozen outpatient facilities. With the Aruba infrastructure, the University can address the substantial increase in mobile devices within its varied academic, research, residential and clinical care environments on a single, high-performing network.

With its large, multi-location campus serving more than 15,000 students, as well as a fast-growing medical center that includes 40 buildings across 72 acres, the organization’s primary network challenge was to satisfy all of the connectivity needs of these differing facilities. Delivering organization-wide access and mobility were key objectives, as was the ability to handle an increasing density of mobile and wireless medical devices and, eventually, support a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy. To satisfy the needs of all their users who are increasingly representative of #GenMobile, the new generation of mobile worker defined by their preference for mobility, the organization knew its aging infrastructure needed an upgrade.

The University embarked on a thorough evaluation of solutions from its incumbent vendor, as well as several challengers, including Aruba. According to Stewart Seruya, Assistant Vice President and Chief Network Officer for Information Technology, University of Miami, the evaluation was led by a broad mix of the institution’s decision-makers including the hospital and research teams, all of whom concluded that Aruba was the best solution to meet their needs.

“We completed multiple pilots in high concentration areas with students, as well as dense areas on our Medical campus, and the Aruba access points were clearly the best-performing in these high density situations,” said Seruya. “The Aruba APs handled the different hand-off scenarios we posed – particularly in our medical environment where there are lots of wireless devices being used by the nurses, staff, and physicians – and they passed all of our stress tests. At the end of the evaluation, our decision to go with Aruba was straightforward.”

The organization has deployed Aruba mobility controllers, the Aruba 130 Series APs and the AirWave Network Management system. To date, the institution has installed approximately 2,300 Aruba APs, with another 4,000 planned over the next twelve months. They are also in the process of configuring Aruba’s ClearPass Access Management System; the original intent was to use ClearPass to provide guest access, but according to Seruya, the University has been impressed with ClearPass’s advanced features and functionality and plans to use it to enable BYOD, moving forward.

The University of Miami/UHealth has begun a rigorous, phased deployment schedule that will eventually result in the Aruba infrastructure covering its entire campus and medical facilities. Currently, the main University buildings, hospitals, and specialty practices are all outfitted with the new gear and over the summer of 2014, the key residential colleges will be upgraded. The University expects 50% of the upgrade to be completed by the end of the summer, with the remaining areas covered in phases over the next two years. In addition, the organization has just announced plans to open a new, 200,000-square-foot outpatient facility that will be upgraded with Aruba infrastructure. The institution will also provide wireless network coverage for major new buildings on campus including a School of Music, a Marine School, and a unique research and science facility that incorporates three stories of water to study weather patterns and storm impact.

“Mobility is crucial for all of our institution’s academic and medical staff, students, and patients, and strategic to the success of the University and UHealth,” said Brad Rohrer, Associate Vice President and Deputy CIO for Information Technology, University of Miami. “We suspect that more than 25,000 devices are connecting to our network daily and we’ve seen peaks as high as 18,000 devices simultaneously on the network. The expectation is to keep all of these users connected reliably and without disruption, anytime and anywhere across the entire organization. The infrastructure is absolutely critical in making this happen.”

Rohrer noted that in both the academic and medical environments, the institution is relying more heavily upon the wireless network. “We want to get to the point where it doesn’t matter what type of device people are using, as long as they can do their job. The network will support whatever devices are being used and will enable easy, secure access for everyone.”

Future plans for the academic environment revolve primarily around BYOD, where the University wants to allow students, faculty, and staff to self-configure their personal devices to the network without IT involvement, while maintaining security and HIPAA requirements.

For the medical environment, one of UHealth’s key goals is to implement Electronic Medical Records (EMR); the wireless infrastructure is central to enabling EMR, as it will allow the various wireless medical devices to communicate.

The organization is also looking to roll out 802.11ac in the near future, which will help it keep pace with the number and types of devices being used in both the academic and medical facilities. Rohrer says he expects that about 40% of the 4,000 additional APs that they will deploy in the next year will be 802.11ac APs. Additional plans for the future include Microsoft Lync for Unified Communications, as the institution believes that its new wireless infrastructure will enable it to move away from expensive investments in telecommunications and voice products.

Said Rohrer, “We’ve had all of these differing needs that we had to consider as we designed our network, and with Aruba, we’ve been able to bring them all together into a single network that serves all of our users. As we move forward, I’m certain that we’ll continue to see more users, more devices and applications and, therefore, more challenges. We feel confident that our new Aruba infrastructure will help us face these challenges head on.”

About Aruba Networks, Inc.
Aruba Networks is a leading provider of next-generation network access solutions for the mobile enterprise. The company designs and delivers Mobility-Defined Networks that empower IT departments and #GenMobile, a new generation of tech-savvy users who rely on their mobile devices for every aspect of work and personal communication. To create a mobility experience that #GenMobile and IT can rely upon, Aruba Mobility-Defined Networks™ automate infrastructure-wide performance optimization and trigger security actions that used to require manual IT intervention. The results are dramatically improved productivity and lower operational costs.

Listed on the NASDAQ and Russell 2000® Index, Aruba is based in Sunnyvale, California, and has operations throughout the Americas, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific regions. To learn more, visit Aruba at http://www.arubanetworks.com. For real-time news updates follow Aruba on Twitter and Facebook, and for the latest technical discussions on mobility and Aruba products visit Airheads Social at http://community.arubanetworks.com.

© 2014 Aruba Networks, Inc. Aruba Networks’ trademarks include Aruba Networks®, Aruba The Mobile Edge Company® (stylized), Aruba Mobility-Defined Networks™, Aruba Mobility Management System®, People Move Networks Must Follow®, Mobile Edge Architecture®, RFProtect®, Green Island®, ETips®, ClientMatchTM, Virtual Intranet AccessTM, ClearPass Access Management SystemsTM, Aruba InstantTM, ArubaOSTM, xSecTM, ServiceEdgeTM, Aruba ClearPass Access Management SystemTM, AirmeshTM, AirWaveTM, Aruba CentralTM, and “ARUBA@WORKTM. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Pavel Radda, Director of Corporate Communications
Aruba Networks, Inc.
+1-408-419-0294
pradda@arubanetworks.com
OR
Lori Hultin, Principal
LSH Communications for Aruba Networks
+1-818-879-4651
lhultin@arubanetworks.com

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WebAssign Introduces Faculty Advisory Board, Partnership with Education Faculty

Leaders in education and seasoned WebAssign users align to support the future of education technology in the classroom

RALEIGH, N.C. — July 28, 2014 — WebAssign, a leading provider of online instructional tools for faculty and students, today announced the creation of the Faculty Advisory Board, an initiative supporting education technology and student learning.

The Faculty Advisory Board unites a cross-disciplinary team of WebAssign adopters to assist in the ongoing analysis of effective teaching practices that incorporate technology to promote student learning. The Faculty Advisory Board will serve as a liaison between WebAssign faculty nationwide and the company.

“The mission of the Faculty Advisory Board is to represent the academic community in regards to education technology trends, evolving teaching models, and the future of WebAssign,” said Chief Academic Officer, Jack Y. Narayan, Ph.D. “Our board of educators will keep WebAssign apprised of shifts in education and provide feedback on the WebAssign product plan to ensure that we continue to be the preferred teaching tool of educators everywhere.”

As an employee-owned benefit company, WebAssign is committed to supporting and improving education instruction and student learning. The Faculty Advisory Board directly supports this initiative to uphold WebAssign’s mission and support education. With plans to meet regularly throughout the year, the Faculty Advisory Board held their inaugural meeting at the 14th annual WebAssign Users Group (WAUG) meeting on June 26-27 in Raleigh, N.C.

“As education technology continues to evolve, WebAssign strives to provide faculty and students with top-notch content and features that enrich student learning,” commented Alex Bloom, WebAssign president. “By implementing the Faculty Advisory Board, we affirm our company’s commitment to enhance the pedagogical vision of the faculty and foster the success of the student.”

About WebAssign
WebAssign is a flexible and fully customizable online instructional system that puts powerful tools in the hands of teachers, enabling them to deploy assignments, instantly assess individual student performance, and realize their teaching goals. More than eight million students have used WebAssign to submit over one billion answers to homework assignments, tests, and assessments.

Headquartered in Raleigh, NC, WebAssign is an independent, employee-owned benefit company dedicated to education technology. For more information, visit www.webassign.net.

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