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How to test Blackboard IM (formerly Wimba Pronto) for Vista Higher Learning Textbooks

  1. After logging in on vhlcentral.com,
  2. the Software is linked on your “My courses”  page: image
  3. Download and install: image
  4. After install: image
  5. Mine was already enabled, but the help says: imageLog in (Note: my account info was different form my vhlcentral.com) image
  6. image
  7. image
  8. Check out the Tools menu
    1. Audio settings should be especially interesting, but there ix no built-on test:
    2. image
    3. Need a partner for testing ..

How students need to work around Sanako startup issues at start of 2014

UPDATE: Step 1 is not necessary anymore, Step2 (Microphone click) still is.

“Back to basics”: Need once again to default to color scheme basic on teacher computer

  1. Same problem as last term: (What made it come unstuck/unfixed?): CAM04573
  2. CAM04574
  3. No Sanako screen sharing activity involved here, but MS-Community-Clips screen sharing.
  4. Classes are moving in, and we cannot have the teacher computer slow to a crawl and eventually crash in the middle of a Sanako class, especially not when an assessment is involved.

Positioning of Language Lab PCs needs improving

2014/01/11 3 comments
  1. Update: We worked around the issue with a male/female USB extension cord (black) to connect the Sanako USB connector (blue) into, this way, the whole setup can be aligned with the rear of the PC and won’t stick out and get in the way: image
  2. Problem: Rear connectors of computers get disconnected or even damaged. Input  (keyboard, mouse, microphone) and output devices (headset) get disconnected connected and therefore fails to work. Damaged equipment needs to be ordered and replaced, at considerable cost of time and money ($TBA per Sanako cable). It is too time-consuming to test equipment functionality (30 headsets and mice and keyboards) before each assessments and exam.
  3. Example of student in seat: CIMG0016
  4. We have observed these and similar damages regularly:
    1. CIMG0020
    2. CIMG0019
    3. Cause: Our language lab computer desks and rows are too narrow, for individual student sitting in front of the computer, not to mention classes moving in and out of their seats
    4. Other requirements:
      1. We need to have equipment plugged in the rear connectors of the computer and cable-tied to prevent students from trying to adjust or “fix” computers by re-plugging the equipment (often improperly, making them fail to work), and also because there is limited desk surface in front of the computers, given keyboard and mouse need to fit in front.
      2. For the functionality of the Sanako digital audio language lab system, we especially need to make sure,  that the headset is plugged in on the same USB port in all computers.
    5. Solutionsthat we have
      1. already tried
        1. we have tied down the connectors with cable ties, but this has not worked sufficiently.
      2. yet to try: is there a way
        1. to permanently attach computers in a different, safer position on the existing furniture?
        2. or to buy and install different furniture, computers seated under desks inaccessible for end user and locked?

LRC headset test on PCs

  1. Log in on a PC.
  2. Launch the Sanako student recorder form the desktop: clip_image001
  3. clip_image004
  4. Click the red recording button then record for 5 sec (speak into the microphone; then tab the microphone with your finger several times, to make sure you are recording through this source), then the blue stop button clip_image002
  5. Click the green Play (from beginning):
    1. can you hear yourself speaking/ the noise from the tabs?
    2. clip_image003
    3. turn your head left and right: can you still hear (sometimes a short cuts out the sound).
  6. If not check headsets cables as described in LRC routine walkthrough for classroom PCs (Sanako headsets) or in LRC routine walkthrough for listening and group room stations(brown headsets).
  7. If it still does not work, report Computer # on clip board.

LRC daily walkthrough for classroom PCs

  1. Find a time when the classroom is not busy on the LRC calendar – if necessary, do it earlier rather than later.
  2. If somebody else than coordinator or director is logged onto the teacher computer, tell the LRC coordinator.
  3. Check the projector? Turned off , screen up
  4. clip_image001
  1. clip_image002
  1. clip_image003
  1. Make sure classroom blinds are closed
  2. clip_image004
  3. Make sure the classroom whiteboard is clean
  4. clip_image005
  5. Make sure headsets are
    1.  hanging on the back of the monitor in the classroom (each headset on the computer it is connected to, and not a neighboring computer).
    2. clip_image006
    3. and are
      1. firmly plugged in
      2. plugged in firmly AND and in the correct (= bottom left) USB port
      3. cable-tied  ((spares in coed436 box “office supplies”).
      4. image

How to create screencasts of student presentations for the language learner ePortfolio in the digital audio lab

image

  1. Students can now easily video-record their own screens during class presentations – not only when using PowerPoint; instead students could demo a website, like their Facebook page.
  2. Last year, we were limited to PowerPoint’s record slideshow with timing and narration feature, and either send the PPSX (small, but requires the PowerPoint viewer) or the “Save as” video (new in PowerPoint 2010; computing intensive and large file size).
  3. Now with MS-Community Clips, screencasts are
    1. minimal effort to create (keyboard shortcut WIN+ALT+R or T; save on desktop; drag/drop into Sanako homework folder)
    2. and little effort to distribute:
      1. Students could have uploaded to a Moodle’ file upload assignment (default file size limit: 64MB) or Kaltura file upload assignment (not sure whether there is a size limit). This seems more suitable for assignments with screencasts recordings.
      2. In this instance
        1. Sanako collected the Homework files to the Sanako share,
        2. my langlabemailer emailed them as attachment (so far tested to allow for 25MB attachment size, the equivalent of 7-8 minute screencast, a hefty space to fill in L2!  We also established: 45MB is too much… Smile)  to the originating student and teacher, for review, grading –
      3. and – provided it passes muster as an attractive and significant piece – possibly for re-use in the student’s language learner ePortfolio.
  4. In addition,
    1. Before the presentations, the teacher easily collaborated on proof-reading the slide decks of individual students, by using the Sanako Remote control screen sharing feature.
    2. During the presentation, students followed more closely – which seemed to increase their attention and comprehension -, thanks to audio and screen being shared to them from the presenter, using the Sanako’s  “Model student” feature.

View a path to where you can start troubleshooting Pearson MyLanguageLab Wimba Voice Java

We used to do proctored LRC chapter exams using this textbook online component, but the Wimba Voice student recording tools stopped working, although a possible solution has been proposed with the problem report. This screencast  leads to an exercise where more testing (each supported browser will behave differently – this is Chrome) is possible::