EdTech Tip Sheet: October 2022

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Happy Hallowe'en!

We have to ask: are you a costume person or not so much? The ETO team runs the gamut on Hallowe'en feelings. On one hand, it's Marisa's favorite holiday (who doesn't like fun walks around the neighbourhood to look at the creative decorations?) and ask Inga about her family's costume theme. On the other, we have the big "nopes" (I prefer to eat the candy myself versus giving it to children).

However you enjoy the spooky holiday, we hope you have a great time! Also please share the good candy bowl locations across campus; you can reach us at fase.edtech@utoronto.ca.

Our top EdTech Tips:

(You can jump to the topic of interest or just keeping reading...)
  1. Sign up for Classroom Response Tool (CRT) vendor demonstrations
  2. New Quercus Changes (including some changes to the Grade Centre)
  3. Watch Shai and Philip's Lightboard video (you saw the behind-the-scenes photo last month)
  4. Review the slides from the "Integrating online assessment into your on-campus class" session
  5. Meet the new ETO Work Study Students
And don't forget about our regular features including the monthly Tech Tip, your weekly Quercus questions, the best clicks from around the web, and how to contact the ETO for support.


1. Sign up for Classroom Response Tool (CRT) vendor demonstrations

Academic, Research, & Collaboration (ARC) Technologies ARC (formerly Academic and Collaborative Technologies (ACT)) has announced vendor demonstrations! We are embarking on the next phase of the procurement process for U of T's new classroom response tool (you last heard about this one when we published a call for your feedback on requirements for this type of tool). This is your chance to see these tools in action and ask questions about how this type of tool could work in your classrooms. The tool selected in this process will be part of the 2023/2024 toolbox (if the process is completed) and does not affect currently available tool options for this or next term (Winter 2023).

Register for an upcoming demo session

Notes: Sessions are repeated; you only need to register for one of the options. All times are EST. If you have any questions about this procurement process, please contact ARC RFP Help


  1. Thursday, Nov. 3 – 11:00 am – 12:00 pm | Echo360 (Option 01) 
  2. Thursday, Nov. 3 – 1:30 – 2:30 pm | Echo360 (Option 02)

Top Hat:

  1. Thursday, Nov. 3 – 3:30 – 4:30 pm  | Top Hat (Option 01) 
  2. Friday, Nov. 11 – 10:00 – 11:00 am | Top Hat (Option 02)

iClicker (from Macmillan Learning):

  1. Monday, Nov. 7 – 10:00 – 11:00 | iClicker (Option 01)
  2. Tuesday Nov. 8 –  2:00 – 3:00 pm | iClicker (Option 02)
What is a Classroom Response Tool (CRT)? A classroom response tool (see what is a classroom response system?) allows multiple people to annotate and comment on the same piece of digital (online) content and share those annotations with others. You see this often using cloud documents (e.g. Word, Google docs) but there are also specialized applications that offer this type of collaboration (e.g. Mentimeter, Top Hat, Poll Everywhere, Kahoot). 


2. Quercus Updates (including some changes to the Gradebook)

Curious about new features and improved functionality in Quercus and other Academic Toolbox tools? The October update includes these recent Quercus changes:
  1. Schedule Page PublicationYou can now schedule your Quercus Pages to be published on a specific date and at a specific time! This feature brings Pages on par with Files, Assignments, and Modules, which already had the option to schedule their release.
  2. Enhanced Gradebook Filters (Preview). New Gradebook Filters make it easier to view and find information in the Gradebook. You can also save and re-use your filters!
Read the Quercus Update


3. Watch Shai and Philip's Lightboard video

While we've recorded lightboard videos for a while, we've never had a video featuring two people at one time (we shared a during-filming photo from the shoot in the last newsletter). As hoped, the effect is conversational but professional, informal but informative, with a strong connection fostered with the learner (viewer). 

What do you think? If this is something you'd like to record for one of your classes, book a consultation with the Content Production team to get started. 
Prof. Shai Cohen and Prof. Philip Asare film Recording and Playing Music: Storing Data Digitally. This video is part of the upcoming ePump project, currently in development. Thank you to both for letting us share this video!


4. Review the slides from the "Integrating online assessment into your on-campus class" session

We encourage you to review the slide deck shared during Anna's recent session on our blog, Integrating online assessment into your on-campus class: A blended approach to assessment and feedback for learning (or you can download the slides directly). 

In this session, we discussed the rationale, advantages, tools, application, and design for assessments, and answered the following questions:
  1. Why use online assessments for an in-person class? (Beginning Slide 05)
  2. What are some advantages for using a blended approach? (Beginning Slide 08)
  3. What tools can I use for online assessment and feedback? (Beginning Slide 12)
  4. How can online assessment(s) be incorporated into an in-person class? (Beginning Slide 21)
  5. What are some recommendations for designing online assessments? (Beginning Slide 23)

Resource Sneak Peak

Wondering how a student might move between online and onsite assessments throughout the term? Check out this example of a mixed modality learning experience (from the session's slides):
Download the Session Slide Deck


5. Meet the new ETO Work Study Students

We would like to welcome Karissa Chen and Shaba Khan to the ETO team! They'll be joining us to help support the FASE Lecture Capture program; you'll see them moving from room to room, filming your classes. Karissa is a second year Earth Science student pursuing both an English and Environmental Economics minor. Shaba is a second-year Mechanical Engineering student pursuing a Robotics and Engineering Business Minor.


Create quick and effective annotated graphics

Have you ever wondered how others can so quickly grab a screenshot, add in bubbles of text or arrows, and then share it (seemingly by magic)? If yes, then you need to stop what you're doing and download SnagIt right now! This institutionally-licensed tool can help you create annotated graphics and videos - and it's free to the U of T community.

How to download TechSmith SnagIt

(This is also an example of the type of resource you can create using the tool.)

  1. Go to CTSI's Tool Guide for SnagIt
  2. Scroll down to the download link (which will prompt you to login with your UTORid and password)


October's Faculty Question(s)

Each week we answer a real question that we've received about Quercus and other Academic Toolbox tools, keeping the questions timely and relevant to you. You can select on the question to read the full inquiry and response or see all previous faculty questions of the week.

Read the Faculty Question of the Week

Why does my group assignment show individual submissions in SpeedGrader? (October 13, 2022) |  I had a group assignment due last night, but when students submitted, their team members did not receive a notification/confirmation. Do you know if this is just a Quercus glitch?
Why can't my students see a file I shared in a module? (October 06, 2022) | My students are telling me they are getting an error message and can't open the file or download it. I've made sure that both the file and the module are published. This has never been an issue - can you help?
See all of the Faculty Questions of the Week posts


This month's articles from across U of T and the web that we think you should read:
  1. A Decade of MOOCs | The University of Toronto has been a pioneer in the Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) space, partnering with two platform providers, Coursera and edX since July 2012.  
  2. Plastic, It's Fantastic | Why so many kids--and growns ups--have a love affair with lamination. 
  3. Active Learning Library | This tool helps you diversify your lessons with filters that let you explore activities that work best in your specific teaching context (it's awesome!).
  4. Life Kit: Steps To Make Receiving Feedback Easier (3 minute listen) | Getting feedback at work can be stressful. Luckily, NPR's Life Kit has tips to make the process less intimidating.


How can the EdTech Office help?

Check out our service catalogue to get started:
  1. Book a consultation - We're happy to meet with you to discuss any element of your course (related to technology, of course!). We can help with your Quercus course, planning your online assessments, setting up your home recording station and more!
  2. Request a new Quercus course - We can create courses for both academic and administrative purposes (though for the latter you might also consider a Microsoft Team). If you're running a program, committee, group (especially one that has students), this might be a great hub for your work.
  3. Request guest Quercus Accounts - These temporary accounts (up to 300 days) can be used to provide access to external guests or be used in testing (for more complex course configurations and features).
  4. Participate in the Remote Editing Process - We've designed a remote editing process that begins with support as you to record your own content (from wherever) and ends with the Education Technology Office to provide editing services and posting to your Quercus course. This is ideal for trimming and cutting webinar recordings. Due to demand, we've decided to continue this service as a regular offering from the ETO.
Looking for 1:1 support? We're happy to schedule individual (or teaching team) consultation(s) to review your course and current stage of design. You can also email us to get started!


Wondering about those photos in the banner?

Each month, in the Tip Sheet Banner, we feature photos from the ETO's outside-of-work adventures.

Photo by Marisa Curmi (left; Hallowe'en decorations) and Anna Limanni (right; last blooms)

Photo by Inga Breeda (left; Hurley) and Irina Belaya (Right; Nuit Blanche)


Follow us on Twitter (@fase_eto) for ETO news and updates and subscribe to the ETO YouTube channel for our latest videos and projects.

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What is the FASE Education Technology Office? The Education Technology Office (ETO) supports academic teaching activities in the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering by providing leadership, consultation, development and support of academic technology solutions. If you’re using a technology tool in the classroom (or thinking about using a technology tool in the classroom), we are here to help you plan and support it at every stage.


Article Category: EdTech Newsletter