Technology Supported Learning & Retention/Advanced Topics

Advanced Topics

Advanced topics are those that are beyond the scope of the Technology to Support Student Learning & Retention (TSSLR) course, but are of interest to participants who have a technical background and/or are experienced users of instructional technology.

Revisiting Teaching and Learning Issues


Discussed briefly in the introduction to Teaching and Learning in module 1. Student-faculty contact, it is worth revisiting Teaching and Learning issues in the Advanced Topics section.

A recent EDUCAUSE article, Top-Ten Teaching and Learning Issues, 2007 identifies a number of issues applicable to this course - assessment and best instructional practices, changes in student, faculty, and institutional expectations, collaboration, work together, ethics, privacy, and data stewardship.

This big-picture overview of teaching and learning is helpful, and demonstrates the need for all instructors, particularly those in higher education, to acquire instructional technology literacy.

Are these the important issues in your teaching practice? Are the issues being addressed by the administration? What responsibilities fall to the individual instructors?

Catalyst / Moodle Groups function


The Module 2 group activity questions assume that you will augment your in-class group activities with some of the basic Catalyst functions - discussions, chat, messaging, choice for students to select topics or groups.

The subject of the Catalyst / Moodle Groups function came up. This is an "advanced" topic which is beyond the scope of this TEI course. However, the Groups function is available, and, as there is interest, it needs to be addressed.

I thought there would plenty of good documentation about the Groups function available at I would just reference a couple of good sources and it would be covered, right? Well, there are resources, and you are welcome to poke around through them. However, they aren't what I was hoping for - a nice summary of group use and an overview of selecting among the options provided.

  • Groups - MoodleDocs The Groups feature allows a teacher to assign teachers and students to a group within a course. Participants in a course can belong to more than one group ... -- instructions for setting up groups
  • Using Moodle: Groups You may wish to browse and/or contribute to Moodle Docs Groups. .... Have you solutions to these drawbacks of moodle groups please? ... -- discussion forum - enter as guest - whole discussion on groups with people asking and answering specific questions
  • Using Moodle: Thinking Through Groups Here are some comments and observations about the "Groups" interface (where an instructor can put participants in distinct groups) and other group-related ... -- discussion forum - just enter as a guest ok to see comments - more talking about the function than how students and instructors use it, but it might answer some of your questions

Do any of these give you a good general understanding of the Moodle Groups function? Do these answer your questions?

If you find other resources that are good ones, please pass them along.

CCC Confer


The CCC Confer project, funded from a grant from the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, offers a viable means to meet and collaborate at a distance. CCC Confer, powered by HorizonLive Web conferencing technology, is available to all staff, faculty and administrators in the California Community Colleges system. It is ADA and Section 508 accessible.

Archived sessions available for viewing - the @ONE webinars are terrific - informative and applicable to Technology Enhanced Instruction

Information competency


Information Competency is defined as the ability to recognize the need for information, and to identify, locate, validate, and effectively use that information for the issue or problem at hand. How would you determine if someone is "information competent"?

One student responded: I would determine if someone is "information competent" by assessing his or her problem-solving skills. I would give them situations to think about or maybe put them in situations where their "competence" can be measured. Someone is "information competent" if he or she can acknowledge the problem at hand and ask questions, research information, follow up on new discoveries, and then make a decision. The person must have good deductive skills and focus on what needs to be found or solved in order to make the process of locating and using the information the most efficient.

No wrong answers


Offering students a multiple choice question with no wrong answers followed by the opportunity to explain their selection, allows students to demonstrate critical thinking, analysis, perhaps some research, and logical explanation skills. They have to make a case for their selection over the other choices.

Video Games


“No Gamer Left Behind” - video games are in fact used to educate high school and college-level students. Even though most educational games are stereotypically for children and toddlers, video games are used to simulate tasks and goals in different types of careers.

This video initially features a technical high school in which computer programming is a huge part of the curriculum. For one of the projects, the students had to create games that provided information on safety by simulating scenes that involved fire and power outages. Next, the video showed how games simulated an operation for medical students or even building for architects. So video games aren’t just for brain dead fun, but can be used to teach and for others to learn. -- Collin Y, m07

Time Savers for Instructors


Profile : Editor - use the simple standard forms most of the time - pages display more quickly - don't need fancy editing for reading student submissions, discussion participation, grading quizzes

Quiz : Manual Grading : Grade all

Quiz : comment