LEARNING DIGITAL MEDIA
ITS continues to enhance existing undergraduate workflows which now include online change of college major, transfer credit articulation credit requests, degree audit exceptions and online medical leave of absence requests. Workflows are in place for graduate students requesting withdrawal, petitioning to graduate or requesting a leave of absence. These online processes continue to reduce the volume of paper forms which students previously hand-carried to various campus offices. In the past year, over 10,000 documents were executed through Banner online workflow.
As ITS continues to enhance systems to address the rapidly growing volume of video being produced by faculty and students, our fundamental strategy is to ensure that solutions are both secure and easy to access at all times. Digital platforms are essential in creating a more personalized learning experience; expanding the variety of useful content and catering to different learning styles. USD faculty who adopt a “flipped classroom” teaching model find these tools extremely helpful in transforming instruction. Digital media enhances distance learning, provides synchronous student collaboration between class sessions and enables faculty members to expose their students to subject matter experts worldwide. ITS media services also supports USDtv. This includes ensuring the TV studio cameras, microphones, video switcher and teleprompters are running smoothly before the filming of TV segments. Media services also supports the USDtv editing stations to ensure students have the proper tools and setups necessary for a professional workflow experience. Within USD’s media lab, multiple trainings are provided that cover best practices for videography, lighting, sound, interviewing, editing, content delivery and other related aspects of video. Media services provides weekly one-on-one training to students (957 students in 2017) who edit and film their news packages or related video homework assignments. In 2017, media services created the Digital Humanities podcasting studio, which allows students and faculty to create professional podcasts for coursework and academic research. Four podcasting stations are available for students and faculty which include a complete suite of video editing software. The media lab offers large-scale poster development and printing services. In 2017, 920 posters were printed and 200 students attended 13 graphic design workshops. 416 videos were edited by ITS media staff.
LEARNING MANAGEMENT SYSTEM Blackboard’s Learning Management System (LMS) is the most robust and feature-rich learning management system on the market. It offers USD students 24/7 access to learning materials, grades and activities on desktop and mobile devices. ITS instructional designers assist faculty with Blackboard hybrid and online courses for improved collaboration, assignment submission and instructor feedback. In 2017, ITS implemented a major update to Blackboard Learn during the summer with several feature enhancements, including an improved video conferencing tool, enhanced mobile app and drag-and-drop editing tools for course content. In 2017, USD hosted 1,150 Blackboard hybrid and online courses per semester, which reflects a five percent increase. Over 90 percent of USD students and 60 percent of faculty had at least one course in Blackboard. The Blackboard system experienced 99.9 percent uptime in 2017. A total of 74 courses within Blackboard used the Turnitin academic integrity tool during 2017. There has also been a significant increase in the volume of video content contained within Blackboard courses.
NEW WEBSITE ENHANCEMENTS AND DATABASES Over the past two years, the ITS web services team has added several new features, enhancements and databases used across all USD websites. This includes a completely reimagined USD directory. The new functionality, look and feel are custom-built, providing new filtering and search options, links to biographies and office hours and using the most accurate data from ITS enterprise systems. ITS developers built a primary USD directory page and also provided specific directories for each academic website and department page. Another feature created by the ITS web team is a more robust custom news and events system called MyPostings. Like the new directory, MyPostings can be accessed from a primary website or disseminated to any of the academic or departmental sites. Our web maintainers have control over their postings with content standards being reviewed by the University Communications team. Our enhanced News Center provides subject filtering, spotlights, blogs
and press releases. The new Events Calendar provides a snapshot of what is coming up today and links to more events and details. Recently, an exciting feature was the addition of a weekly news digest called Torero Weekly. The basis for Torero Weekly is a newly formatted email template that is helping to standardize communication efforts across the board at USD.
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