On Wednesday, December 2, over seventy-five people braved the cold and rainy weather to attend the second annual DELTA Open House. The Open House featured the latest trends and technologies in advancing knowledge of distance education, e-learning, online teaching strategies, information technologies, and instructional design. Students, faculty and DELTA staff participated in lively discussions.
Distance Education provided proctoring information sessions, and campus partners (Campus Safety, The Cashier’s Office, and Financial Aid) shared their DE partnership overviews. Instructional Support Services and Educational Technology Services gave demonstrations and answered questions while attendees toured several simultaneous demos.
Creative and Multimedia demonstrations included
- an Entomology prototype developed with the Unity3D game engine as part of DELTA’s Serious Games Research initiative;
- Flash Media Player, a tool developed to help NC State instructors and staff present various forms of video and media;
- the NC State Wolflands Second Life island; and
- a Plant Pathology Diagnostics Interactive demonstration.
Video Communication Services demonstrated their high definition camera and showed clips from unique educational videos produced entirely at VCS. Viewers got a big kick out of how effective and fun these educational videos are for students. Broadcast manger John Gordon and producer/director Darren Ley answered questions about the various capabilities of VCS, from turnkey educational videos to online Media Rich class captures and videoconferencing. “Faculty were amazed at all VCS has to offer,” said Gordon.
The Instructional Design team presented informal demonstrations on a variety of challenges and solutions for online course delivery. They chatted with guests about ways to organize course content, solutions for creating interactive online lectures, and the use of Google Docs for surveys. They also demonstrated how to use Livescribe in a freshman-level math course, showing how to add narration to a written explanation in an online environment. Finally, they displayed the DELTAwire (deltawire.delta.ncsu.edu), a WordPress solution for creating a multi-author news site. This was a great opportunity for sharing information and brainstorming about strategies for teaching with technology.
All DELTA staff enjoyed talking with seasoned, new, and potential DE instructors; as well as students, staff and other guests; about how DELTA can be a part of their NC State experience. As always, we walked away from Open House brimming with ideas about how DELTA can further assist instruction. We’re already looking forward to Open House 2010!