Thursday, August 14, 2014

Powtoon EDU Subscriptions Available for KUMC Faculty

As mentioned in one of our previous blog posts, a few members of the TLT staff recently attended the 15th Annual Summer Institute on Distance Learning and Instructional Technology (SIDLIT) at Johnson County Community College. One of the great aspects of the conference was the opportunity to learn more about some of the great products that are available to enhance teaching and learning.

One of the products that TLT had the opportunity to see in action was Powtoon (, an online tool that allows users to create engaging, animated presentations and videos that can be shared with others. Powtoon is a great option if you are interested in moving beyond traditional voice-over PowerPoint presentations or if you would like to provide a creative way for students to demonstrate their learning. You can view an example of a Powtoon below that gives a brief explanation of the tool.


As a sponsor of the SIDLIT conference, Powtoon generously provided all SIDLIT participants with Powtoon EDU subscriptions for free, and each user was given 150 additional EDU subscriptions to share with their colleagues. As a result, TLT has Powtoon EDU subscriptions available for KUMC faculty, and each subscription also comes with 60 student accounts for you to share with your students!

If you are interested in obtaining one of the Powtoon EDU subscriptions please contact TLT at or at (913) 588-7107, and we would be glad to get you started. We are looking forward to seeing the creative ways faculty and students will use this new tool!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Editing Blackboard Announcements

When editing Blackboard Announcements, please remember to un-check the box Send a copy of this announcement.  If left checked, all users in the course will receive an email of the announcement.

Thursday, August 7, 2014


Last week, TLT staff attended the Summer Institute on Distance Learning and Instructional Technology (SIDLIT) at Johnson County Community College. SIDLIT is an annual technology conference that includes presentations, discussion groups, and demonstrations for educators and distance learning support staff.  

TLT staff has presented multiple times throughout the years and 2014 was no different. Sonny presented his Second Life work with "Second Life is not dead: Current research project using Second Life virtual learning environment."  Julie and Nellie highlighted their work in the School of Nursing with "Aligning and analyzing your course data." Both presentations were well attended and the presenters received ribbons attached to their name tags for all to see. 

Other topics discussed were student success in online courses, accessible content, and presentation tips. Highlights from these sessions include:

  • Student-to-student interaction is important in promoting student success in online courses. Let students lead discussion boards and blogs. Instructors, only post to clarify topics or answer questions.
  • Create an FAQ section in your course to reduce confusion and number of student emails.
  • KU provides information on how to make your course content more accessible at

  • The power of the pause when presenting: breaks up a rapid pace, adds power to a phrase or section of content, and allows the audience to catch up.  

TLT had a great time presenting, learning, networking, and best of all winning prizes! See you in 2015, SIDLIT!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Classroom Technology Orientation and Training

If you're new to KUMC classrooms and classroom technology, please plan to attend one of our orientation and training sessions, where you'll learn all about our auditoriums and classrooms, and how to operate the technology in these rooms. No RSVP is needed. Just attend whichever session best fits your schedule.
  • Thursday, 8/21 at 2-3 pm in B018 SoN
  • Monday, 8/25 at 10-11 am in 1014 OM
  • Wednesday, 8/27 at 8-9 am in 1050 SoN
  • Friday, 8/29 at 1-2 pm in B018 SoN
If you're unable to make one of these sessions, please give us a call at 913-588-7326 to arrange a one-on-one session.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Scheduled Blackboard Maintenance (8/7) - COMPLETED

We have completed this maintenance and Blackboard is functioning normally. We apologize for any inconvenience this have caused.

UPDATED: Scheduled Chalk Maintenance - August 13 (5-8 am)

UPDATE: This maintenance has been rescheduled for Wednesday, August 13 between 5:00-8:00 am.

Original post:
Due to scheduled database maintenance, we are recommending users refrain from completing training in Chalk this Thursday, August 7 between 5:00-8:00 am.  While we do not expect extended down time, Chalk users may experience intermittent errors and a brief period while the site is inaccessible.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Scheduled Blackboard Maintenance (8/5) - RESOLVED

The maintenance has been completed and Blackboard is up and running normally. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.