Join us for Noodling Moodle at Program Conference TODAY!

We'll be in the Cardinal Perch room at 1:30 p.m.

At the conference, we’ll have 60 minutes to dig into:
  • Where to start when designing an online course 
  • How to provide opportunities for hands-on, active, and interactive learning 
  • Exciting methods of content sharing 
  • Awesome ideas for interaction designed to motivate learners and increase learning 
You’ll also come away from our Program Conference session with a user-friendly checklist for great course design and peer review. 

Go deeper: Enroll in our Noodling Moodle online course!

Join a community of Extension staff learning to use Moodle more effectively for learner engagement October 12-28, 2015.  Learn from each other as well as the course content, and keep the conversation going in the Google Group.

Finish Noodling Moodle by the end of October to get premium access to Screencast-O-Matic FREE for one year!

If you participated in the preview session, thank you for sharing your questions, thoughts, experiences, and feedback!  You'll be glad to know I've added a lot of content based on the preview session I think you'll find helpful (like information on blending and flipping courses and making engaging videos).  The course is also more open and flexible so you can access what you're most interested in right away, or step through the course sequentially over time.  I even outlined a couple of different approaches (approx. 15 or 45-minute sessions) that will help you pencil the course into your schedule over a period of about 2.5 weeks.  

There's no wrong way to take the course.  But please do "show up" for it though -- contributing to wikis, forums, etc. along the way.  We can all learn more when we learn together -- ENROLL TODAY!

Please note: This isn’t a ground-up basics of Moodle course -- you can get that from central IT. Instead, this is a course that focuses on how to motivate and engage your non-credit online learners. 

Happy Moodling!

6 Breakout Sessions, a Resource Fair Booth and Mobile App... you can't miss us!

Breakout Sessions

Monday afternoon
1:45-2:45 p.m.

Easy peasy registration for your program 

Speakers: Erik Bremer, Extension e-Commerce & Registration; Patrice Johnson, Extension registration coordinator
Location: Mallard Point
Destiny One Registration System (DORS) is the U's new Non-Credit Registration System that is integrated with Moodle & EFS. See "The Registrator" live and learn if you have what it takes to make it easy for your customers to register and pay for your classes, workshops, Moodle courses, seminars, webinars and more. In this session, you will learn how this new system can make your customer's life and your job easier; identify what you need to get your event registration started, and see the potential of "The Registrator" in the world of integrated customer-focused software.
Make awesome, share-worthy videos
Speakers: Karen Matthes, director, IT Training and Support; Alison Holland, academic technologist
Location: Owl Overlook
Whether you want to flip your workshop or class, or capture standalone video, we’ll share tips, tricks and tools for better mini-lectures, demonstrations, video tours, interviews and welcome messages that will help your research and teaching content reach a larger audience. You’ll learn about research-based best practices in “chunking,” tone, and accessibility, as well as how to more actively engage viewers. We’ll also introduce you to some great tools such as Camtasia Relay, Screencast-O-Matic, and Adobe Presenter, and help you decide which best fit your goals.

Tuesday morning
10:00-11:30 a.m.

How to host awesome WebEx webinars

Speakers: Karen Matthes, Director, IT Training and Support; Amy Baker, Chief Technology Officer
Location: Mallard Point

When hosting a webinar, you only have a few minutes before participants tune you out. Where do they go? All sorts of places: email, water cooler, phone or anyplace but your webinar. Have you ever wondered if web conference training was really worth your time and effort?
Training with webinars is just as effective as traditional classroom training—when it's engaging. In this workshop, we’ll explore ways to engage your participants every few minutes, keeping them from countless distractions. Specific topics include: Examine the WebEx classroom, Recognize common webinar mistakes, Learn how to adapt face-to-face activities for webinars, Discuss tips to encourage collaboration during a webinar, Explore and share techniques that engage learners and add variety to a webinar.

Tuesday afternoon
1:30-2:30 p.m.

Noodling Moodle: Motivating and engaging Extension’s online learners

Speakers: Alison Holland, Extension academic technologist; Amy Baker, chief technology officer
Location: Cardinal Perch
We'll explore tips & tools for motivating and engaging Extension's online learners! You will leave having seen doable, modern teaching ideas in action in Moodle. You will know exactly where to begin with designing your online course, and leave with a checklist for continuing or improving your course design. We’ll also invite you to participate in Extension’s “Noodling Moodle” online course and, if you want, to take part in a facilitated peer review if you already have a Moodle course.
Our learning objectives:
o   Where to start when designing an online course
o   How to provide opportunities for hands-on, active, and interactive learning
o   See exciting methods of content sharing
o   See awesome ideas for interaction designed to motivate learners and increase learning
o   Receive a user-friendly checklist for great course design

2:45-3:15 p.m.

Organize your Google drive 

Speaker: Karen Matthes, Director, IT Training and Support
Location: Cardinal Perch
Is your Google Drive a mess? Not sure how to use Google Drive with your team? Wondering what you can store in Google Drive? This workshop will help you organize your Google Drive and learn how Google Drive is a great way to collaborate and share documents. Topics covered: Upload and share files and/or folders for collaboration, Organize your documents and documents shared with you, Learn how to edit documents with others.

3:30-4:00 p.m.

Creating and maintaining customer relationships with CRM software

Speaker: Neil Anderson, Extension Technology, Program Director e-Commerce, Registration, CRM
Location: Owl Overlook
Extension Program Teams needed more functionality than just the "vanilla" Saleforce constituent relationship management tool. Now the U's Salesforce has been upgraded from "Core" to "Enterprise." It has enhanced flavor, functionality and a mass email tool. We'll start with a quick overview of future integrated software that is seamless to the customer and reduces multiple entry of data for the program team. Then we'll demo Salesforce so you'll be able to explain what functionality you need to improve your team's ROI, and we'll have time for questions.

U of M Resource Fair

Tuesday, 4:15-5:00 p.m.

What's new in Extension Technology? Come talk tech with members of your technology team, visit the tech device petting zoo, have your photo made in our hi-tech photo booth, and learn all about how we can help you be innovative and efficient at work!  We hope you'll stop by to say "hello."

Guidebook App

NEW this year!

We've been helping the Program Conference planning team to make the schedule mobile!  Download Guidebook in the app store, then enter code "umnextpc".

How to set Gmail as your default email in Chrome

When you click on an email link does it open in Gmail? If not, you can set Gmail as the default. Since this is a browser setting, detailed instructions for Chrome are below:

1. Open Gmail in Chrome and click the Protocol Handler icon in your address bar. If you don’t see the Protocol Handler Icon, go to step 3.

Protocol Handler Icon

2. When prompted to Allow to open all email links?, select Allow and click Done. Then you're done! Skip steps 3-5.

3. If you were unable to see the Protocol Handler icon click the Chrome menu icon in the top right corner of your browser, and choose Settings.

4. Click the Show Advanced Settings link at the bottom of the screen. Then click the Content Settings button under the Privacy header.

5. In the pop-up window, scroll down to the Handlers section and click the Manage Handlers button. Then select from the mailto dropdown, click Done and you're done!

Tip: You can also make Google calendar your default calendar in Chrome. Open Calendar in Chrome and follow the same instructions.

Undo send feature in Gmail

Google added an undo send feature this summer but it is not enabled by default (unless you had it activated through Google Labs). How it works: if you make a typo or regret sending a message, you can take back a message you just sent (up to 30 seconds).

To enable Undo Send:

  1. In Gmail, click the gear in the top right
  2. Select Settings
  3. Scroll down to “Undo Send” and click Enable
  4. Set the cancellation period (the amount of time you have to decide if you want to unsend an email)
  5. Click Save Changes at the bottom of the page

Undo sending a message

After you click Send, a link to Undo or View message appears near the top of your screen

If you don’t select “Undo” within the time limit, your message will be sent. “Undo send” may not work if you experience connection issues.

Sign in to multiple Google accounts at once

If you have more than one Google Account, you can use multiple sign-in to switch between accounts without having to sign out and back in again or use the incognito feature. For example, if you have a departmental Google account or a personal Google account, you can easily switch between your work account and your other accounts within the same browser (like Chrome or Firefox) using multiple sign-in.

Add your Google Accounts

  1. Sign in to Google
  2. Click your profile photo or email address at the top-right corner of the page.
  3. Click Add account from the drop-down menu.
  4. Enter the username and password for another account you want to access, and click Sign in.

Switch between accounts

1. Click your profile photo or email address at the top right of the page
2. Choose the account you’d like to sign in to

View your schedule from your Gmail Inbox

See upcoming events, locations and details from your Google Calendar right in your Gmail inbox!
  1. In Gmail, click the gear in the top right
  2. Select the Labs tab
  3. Scroll to the Google Calendar gadget lab and click Enable
  4. At the bottom, click Save Changes
  5. Click at the bottom of your Inbox list of labels (on the left)

Note: if the displayed calendar is not the right calendar, click Options > Edit visible calendar and choose the calendar you want to see.

If you have Google tips you'd like to share, leave them in a comment! 


It's our second installment of Academic Technology Project "Show and Tell"!  Still being somewhat new here, I'm enjoying sharing these pieces of Extension Technology's portfolio as I learn more about the types of projects our department has worked on and the challenges we get to help solve by finding the right Academic Tech-related opportunities.  I hope you're enjoying it too!

Next up: Extension Equine Program YouTube Channel

The Extension Equine Program has been developing a strong web and social media presence over the years to make information available anytime to horse owners and professionals in Minnesota and across the U.S. while not exhausting travel and faculty resources. The team grew interested in expanding their outreach to include short, educational “how to” videos. The team identified several “how to” topics--including pasture sampling, when to initiate grazing, and a demonstration of the importance of weighing hay and grain. These videos address frequently asked questions that are important to the Equine Team’s outreach and that are well-suited to a short demonstration video format. Extension Technology worked to film videos on-location at the St. Paul campus, edit them in a YouTube-friendly format, and support the launch of an Equine Program YouTube Channel.

Image of U of M Equine Extension Program's YouTube page.

This project was selected through the Extension e-Learning Proposal Process. We work with Extension Educators, Program Staff, and Faculty who offer training or education, like the Turf and Ground Field Day, Equine Demonstrations, the Local Foods College, the Serve it Up Safely Course, and the Master Gardener Core Course. They are ready to expand their reach, make education more accessible, and/or collaborate with colleagues and community members at a distance. If this is you and you’re ready for help, contact us for a consultation or propose a project!

Didn't make it to the fair this year or want to relive the memories? -- No problem!

Last week Amy, Karen, and I created a virtual field trip of the Minnesota State Fair to learn about 360-degree photography and its uses. We created a virtual tour for you and included a 1-minute behind the scenes video to give you an idea of just how easy it is to do.*

*We used Google's Photo Sphere app and (both are free!).

How might you use this technology in your programs?

The Extension technology project process provides a viable pipeline for a broad range of elearning and technology proposals to be prioritized by leadership and supported by Extension Technology

Get by with a little help from your IT friends

When you design technology-enhanced learning, you want it to be effective, efficient, supportable, and have longevity. So we created a document that's intended to help you and your team achieve these goals. This document, Development Guidelines for Extension e-Learning Projects, provides guidelines for some common e-learning use cases within Extension. Please keep it in your back pocket when creating a...
  • Moodle course, 
  • video, 
  • lecture capture, or 
  • other online learning activities. 
You are especially encouraged to use this document as a resource when planning a project and collaborating with project teams both inside and outside of the University.

Apply for Extension Technology project support

Extension Technology will select projects to receive a package of services that includes hands-on experience and a variety of resources to design and develop effective technology-enhanced Extension educational tools and curriculum. Project teams will find inspiration, education, practice and collaboration with proposed tech tools, including videos, lecture captures, podcasts, Moodle modules, apps, e-books and more. The next deadline for proposals is Sept. 1, 2015. Read more about proposal requirements here.  Also check out the new blog post series we started featuring past projects to inspire you and recognize the efforts of innovative Extension teams.

What technology projects are you working on?

Earlier this year, WebEx was introduced as the University's new web conferencing tool, replacing UMConnect.  After September 25, 2015, the Adobe Connect ("UMConnect") server will be no longer available to use for hosting/creating meetings.  

Your Existing Meeting Recordings: 

You will still have access to your existing UMConnect recordings after September 25. The URL's to your recordings will not change.

Adobe Presenter Recordings

Adobe Presenter presentations that are currently published on the UMConnect server will still be available and the URLs will not change. You can also continue to publish new Adobe Presenter 10 presentations to the UMConnect server. 

More information about Adobe Presenter can be found on the Adobe website. Adobe Presenter can be purchased through the University software purchasing site.