Saturday, January 25, 2014

Edmodo Q&A - Should I delete or archive last semester's class?

At the end of a semester, you may be wondering what to do with your Edmodo classes (groups). While the best choice always depends on several factors. The following guide may help you in deciding the best course of action. 

If you have a year-long course and expect minimal movement of students enrolling, dropping or moving between groups then the best course of action may be to manually move students,unenroll dropped students, and have new students add to the group using the group enrollment key.

However, if there will be significant movement of students or if your course is semester-long then archiving the current group and creating a new group for the second semester may be a better solution. 

As a general rule I rarely recommend deleting a group entirely since deleting the group will completely remove all record of activity including submitted work, quiz scores, etc. Archiving a group hides the group from your active list of groups and sets the group to read only for students. According the Edmodo help document,

Once a Group is archived, students will not be able to reply or post anything to the Group. Students in an archived Group will still be able to direct message you, but the Group activity is inactive.  All Posts and data from the group will be saved, and you can view the Posts and retrieve any previously created quizzes or assignments from your archived Groups.  You can also restore an archived group at any time, making it active again.

Here are a few screen shots demonstrating the steps for archiving a group.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

New Google Image search tool for quickly locating images licensed for reuse

Being a good netizen means giving credit to resources we find and use on the web. Sometimes this can be a tricky and time consuming process. Fortunately, Google Images has recently updated the search tools feature to make finding Creative Commons licensed photos more friendly.

To get started, begin a Google Image search and locate the Search Tools selector.

Next, click on the Usage Rights selector.

Choose the reuse license that best fits your needs. In most cases this will be "labeled for reuse" unless you plan to modify the image or use the image in a business setting. 

The Usage Rights selector filters the images so that you are only browsing images that you have permission to reuse with the expectation that you will properly cite the image wherever it is used.Here's an example.

Mars Exploration Rover by NASA is licensed under public domain
I'll be honest. Proper citation takes more time than just copy and paste, but it is a skill that we need to model as teachers and teach
to our students. And at least it is getting easier to find these images in the first place.

Finally, there are some tools available to help automate the citation process if you use the Chrome Browser and are searching for Creative Commons images on Flickr. It may also be helpful to know that the Research Tool in Google Drive has a similar filtering option for finding Creative Commons licensed images.