With a head count just shy of 60, the December session set a record for Chat Chow attendance.  Clearly people were eager to find out about the new and changing technologies that the session promised to address.

Michael Hagarty, Career Services, opened the program with an introduction to Handshake, the new web platform that students will be using to access meaningful career  and internship opportunities. A popular program with over 8,000,000 students, 400+ universities, and 200,000+ employers already involved, Hagarty outlined the benefits our students and as well as our Career Services office will enjoy as it is rolled out next semester.  Speaking of roll outs, look for the Hagarty’s yellow plastic chair to see where the roll out parties will be held across campus.

Handshake Logo

Next up Jason Spartz, Instructional Technology, provided a rundown of changes that are coming to current technologies and an introduction to new programs as well.  Porfolium, a social networking platform company that allows university students and recent graduates to connect with businesses and employers and present their previous academic work and projects to supplement their resumes, is coming to campus next semester.  College faculty will have an opportunity to get familiar with it over the Spring semester and it is expected to be fully on board with the Gen Ed roll out in the fall.

Blackboard will be updated January 2nd to fix various bugs.   Box View will replace the old inline grading system, Crocodoc. and a new addition, Retention Center, will be available.

Fears that Google Drive was going away appear to have been misplaced, since what Google is actually tossing is its “Back Up and Sync” program to be replaced with the new app “Drive File Stream” which has a new “Team Drive” feature.  To keep up with all these changes Spartz recommended that folks download the new G-Suite training app that will sit on your desktop and provide help for using any of the Google products.

Finally we learned the the currently used SMU web conferencing tool, Go to Meeting, will be replaced with Zoom. Spartz outlined some of the features that make this program especially effective for classroom use such as the ability to separate participants into group discussions.

To get the full story from this information-packed session please download it on Tegrity.