Vaughn, Benjamin Corkery, Steven O'Shields
Professors and students would like to more effectively use Blackboard to supplement classroomcommunication; however, according to Stephen Nodine, faculty training coordinator at ClemsonUniversity, most professors fail to use many features available for Blackboard pages. JessicaMartin and Phil Randall, English professors at Clemson University, have stated that they spendhours each semester setting up Blackboard pages that don’t fully realize their visions of acourse management system. As students, we have experienced the effects of poorly designedBlackboard pages throughout our college careers. Even though step-by-step instructions for setting up a page are available on the internet and through CCIT, this information focuses onthe minutiae of setting-up Blackboard’s features and doesn’t explain why the professor wouldwant to use these features. Moreover, there isn’t a well-documented example of an effective,communications-centered Blackboard page to guide or inspire professors to use featuresbeyond the bare minimum. Our team will prepare a document that will inform professors of commonly unused Blackboard features, explain how those features could potentially benefitprofessors and students, and describe how those features can be implemented.
The ultimate goal of every professor is to help students succeed in school. An integral partof student success is communication from the instructor to the student. With technologiesdeveloping at a rapid rate, it is becoming easier for professors to communicate with studentswhen they're not in the classroom. The problem is that professors and faculty memberseither have not been informed of all the portals through which people can communicate todayor aren't willing to take advantage of these communication technologies due to negativeperceptions. This problem affects the audience (the professors) because when there is a lackof communication, there is generally a decrease in student grades. For example, if an instructor can't get his or her point across, the students in the course won't know what to do for classassignments. While this may not be an issue in a classroom setting where questions can bequickly answered, confusion about something posted on Blackboard can cause problemswithout the right tools in place. In general, professors and students would like to use Blackboard more efficiently to assistin classroom communication but most professors don’t implement many helpful featuresof Blackboard that can improve student-professor communication. Also, there are no well-documented examples of communication-centered Blackboard page templates to assistinstructors in using features beyond the most basic parts of the page.
Our group will create a document that provides straightforward instructions to aid professorsin the creation of a basic Blackboard page in a format that encourages student learning. Themain project will be written like a manual that a professor can use as a reference. This formatwill satisfy the NAK of the audience because focus on the information that any professor is likely