Academic Technology Newsletter - December 2021
Academic Technology Updates
We are pleased to welcome Martin Lander to Warwick as the newly appointed Senior Academic Technologist for Mathematical Sciences (Statistics Department and Warwick Mathematics Institute). Martin has joined us from Coventry University. He will be working alongside Miriam Averna-Joint in Maths and Stats to support staff and students.
The Centre for Teacher Education (CTE) are seeking a 0.5 FTE Senior Academic Technologist for 1 year. If you would consider undertaking the role or know of anyone that would be interested, please contact Cara Pearson C.Pearson@warwick.ac.uk for more information.
- The long-awaited Moodle Recycle Bin is now available in Moodle. It can be found in the list of options behind the Actions menu located in the top right-hand corner of every Moodle course page. If an activity or resource is deleted from a Moodle space it is kept in the Recycle bin for seven days before being permanently deleted. Editing teachers, Course leaders and Managers have the required permissions to restore items from the recycle bin. Please note that most, but not all, content can be restored. Further details can be found in the Restore deleted content guide.
- An issue related to enrolments arose at the beginning of last week (w/c 6th Dec.) where automatically-generated web groups were being emptied causing students to be suspended in Moodle. This affected several departments and was caused by SITS data related to module length. Once this was updated the problem was resolved by Wednesday of the same week.
- An issue has been identified with 'response required' questions in the Moodle questionnaire. If your questionnaire spreads across several pages, students are able to bypass 'response required' questions by saving the questionnaire and returning to it. When they return to the activity they will automatically be directed to the last page of the questionnaire without having to complete 'response required' questions on previous pages. Any questions on the last page will still have to be completed before the student is able to submit. The workaround for the meantime is, where appropriate, to put all questions on one page.
- The planned upgrade for MoodleX from version 3.8 to 3.10 is now scheduled for Thursday 16th December from 10 am. This will also include an update to STACK version 4.3.10 as well as the addition of some other question types to be in line with the main Moodle site. This will require a period of downtime of approximately one hour.
In case you missed it; Vevox released a new feature in June that enables the use of LaTeX in polls. This new feature enables you to include mathematical or scientific formulas and expressions in the questions that you create. For example, superscript and subscript tex, fractions, Greek characters, complex formulas and matrices etc. Learn more about using LaTex in polls on the Vevox website.
Mahara was due to be upgraded to version 21.10 on 14th December 2021. However, it was not possible to complete the upgrade and a new date will be set as soon as our hosting provider has availability. More details about the new version here.
The eAssessment team is now working on the preparation for January exams. This term they developed and supported formative and summative assessments for SoE, Economics, SMFL, WBS and WMS. New video guides for students and staff on the most common requests available from here: video guides. If you would like to discuss your needs for online exam and formative assessments, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org
Lecture Capture and Echo360
- The Lecture Capture booking form and associated instructions will be updated on Wednesday 15th December.
- We have suspended automatic updates to lecture capture schedules due to the introduction of a new central timetable database to manage changing room capacities. We expect to begin adding new module recordings for term 2 in the new year once the automatic update process has been restarted by IDG.
- Echo360 Q&A has now been enabled. This feature allows instructors and students to post questions, answers, and comments regarding the content. To enable this feature for one of your modules, please complete the following:
- Click on the lecture capture block in your Moodle module space to open Echo360.
- Click on the Settings tab at the top-right of the page.
- Click on the Features tab that appears at the left-hand side of the page.
- Turn the Q&A switch on.
Please see the following Echo360 guides for more information regarding Echo360 Q&A:
For guidance on requesting automated lecture capture, please see our guide.
If our guides still don’t answer your questions, please get in touch via email@example.com
- We are collating experiences related to hybrid teaching from this term. Please submit any Hybrid experiences using this form. Please also forward this link to any teaching staff and others who may have been involved in delivering or supporting hybrid teaching. This information will be useful to feed into discussions related to improving facilities, room technology, guidance and support.
- Hybrid teaching technologies advice from Audio Visual Services (AV); Hybrid teaching at Warwick, Academic Technology advice; Hybrid advice from the Arts faculty page
Training & Workshop Opportunities
- Moodle - Getting started with Quiz: Wed 15 Dec '21 2pm:
- An introduction to MIRO: Weds 15th 1pm:
- See here for self-paced training (Introductions to Moodle, H5P, Vevox & Mahara)
- Term 2 training dates coming soon.
The Teams Meetings tool keeps developing and the features slowly evolve.
- A new Presenter mode in Teams can be used to help provide better connection between presenter and audience when delivering online presentations. Teams now has the following options for the presenter camera: standout (cut-out); side by side; reporter view. This new feature can be activated at the point you share your screen, see here for a quick guide and overview.
- There is now a meeting options setting to “record automatically.” This might appear to be an excellent feature, especially for the busy and forgetful among us. However, as the recent discussion showed there are pros and cons to be considered when using this feature. One drawback can be that informal chat from the start of the meeting is also captured, and for some shared recordings that could be a problem. If you do use this feature then you might consider making this clear to all participants in any invite or notification. See here for the original discussion.
- The Teams navigation problem reported in the November newsletter appears to be ongoing. When using the Teams tiles view to navigate from one team space to another team the content of the Posts tab, in the new team space that you have just switched to, may not display correctly. While the problem is being investigated suggested Workarounds are to avoid using the grid tiles to navigate. Either (1) use the search bar to find and navigate to your Teams or (2) use Teams List view instead of the Grid view, see here to find out how to change your Teams layout.
- We are still waiting for the rollout of the Teams ‘co-organizer’ role previously promised for general availability “November 2021”. This is now listed as being “December 2021”. We will keep an eye out under the Xmas tree and hope that Microsoft or Santa will deliver the goods soon see the roadmap here.
- Quick tip: To change your Teams profile picture click on the current picture, and then hover over the image in the pop-up, you should see a camera icon appear. Click on this to upload an alternative picture. It may take a while to update everywhere.
- With the help of this super user and wide TEL community, we continue to update the “Recipes for Teaching” that provide advice, ideas and tips for designing and developing teaching. The latest page to be updated is one related to creating quizzes in Moodle & beyond: Create an online quiz in Moodle. Look out for further developments as we review, improve and consolidate the information on these recipe pages. Your feedback and input is always welcome.
- The spring call for WIHEA Project Funding (Scheme 1) is now open. Proposals are being invited to be submitted before the closing date on 4th February ‘22. See the WIHEA funding page for more information.
- The IATL Project Funding mentioned in the November newsletter remains open with a rolling deadline for project support applications from both students and staff which explore ways of fostering community and reimagining the future of learning at Warwick. Find out more about IATL funding here.
If you have any feedback, questions, comments or tips that you would like to share then please do get in touch with Jim Judges: firstname.lastname@example.org
This newsletter can only provide a taste and snapshot of some of the active areas of interest. We will do our best to send these updates each month. If you need help and guidance, please refer to the main online Academic Technology pages here. If you have a technical query with Moodle or any of our supported tools, please contact email@example.com. For more general IT enquiries, or if you are unsure who to ask please contact the IT helpdesk.
Just for fun: Try out our Christmas crossword!
All the best for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the central Academic Technology team!
Kerry Pinny (Interim Head of Academic Technology)
Jim Judges (Senior Academic Technologist)
Natasha Nakariakova (Service Owner, eAssessment)
Cameron Deans, Craig Gall, Yihua Huang, Michelle Jackman, Kiruthika Prabhakaran, Paul Trimmer, Nadine Stewart & Svetlana Zakhidova
Academic Technology | Flexible & Online Learning| Education Group | University of Warwick