Turning the Tables
As a former university teacher, I was expected to keep up-to-date with the latest technology to be able to produce material for lectures and seminars. For the majority of my career, teaching had been face-to-face in huge lecture theatres, so the most complicated thing I had to master for years was PowerPoint.
Along came virtual learning environments (VLEs). OMG – why did they have to make them so opaque? In the last five years, my university changed its VLE twice. Hardly anything stayed the same. One was compatible with plagiarism software and could be used directly. The second one could only be accessed indirectly. One wouldn’t work at all with it. Setting up assignments was different for each one too, as was the module page layout. I won’t even start on the submission portal!
However, all that was about to change in March 2020, when the first lockdown hit. Everyone had to pivot quickly to online teaching. For many, it was an almost impossible task but somehow it had to be done. How were staff meant to teach online when the university wasn’t licensed for using zoom or Microsoft Teams? How were we to persuade students to engage when some of them barely engaged face to face? Would traditional lecturing styles translate to online teaching?
At first, staff had to record lectures then upload them to the VLE. Not very engaging for students. After a lot of persuasion, the university got a license for both Microsoft Team and Zoom. But the staff weren’t familiar with either of them.
I was one of the oldest members of staff in my faculty. I think people thought I wouldn’t be able to cope. Little did they know, that because of my coaching, I had already mastered technology such as Zoom whilst most others were struggling. Over the summer period, I ended up teaching some of my very much younger colleagues some of the more advanced features of Zoom, much to their embarrassment.
Making Life Easier
There are some technologies that I’ve picked up during lockdown that changed the way I coach and produce course materials, social media posts, etc.
Designing with Canva
Video Editing with Camtasia
I’ve used Camtasia for a long time as I used to produce videos for teaching. So now that I’m producing online courses it saves me so much time and money. How much would it cost to outsource video editing? How much time would it take to go backward and forward between an editor and myself? I love editing things and seeing the final product. I’ve got the Adobe creative suite but I’ve not been brave enough yet to try Final Cut Pro, but I will when I’ve got less to do.
These Are A Few of My Favourite Things
Miro for Creative Mapping
Otter is Great for Transcription
Content Studio Social Media Scheduling
Still Need To Master A Few Things
API’s to my Website
My next one to master and get it to link properly to my website is a quiz app. In the field of divorce coaching, clients can come at any stage of their divorce. It would be great to be able to pre-determine what help they need through a short survey.
Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?
Certainly not me!