OFDIT Newsletter September 2022

September 2022

Dear faculty,

We hope your semester is off to a great start!

In this month’s newsletter we share info about OER and Open Pedagogy opportunities you might be interested in, as well as our full schedule of faculty trainings for Fall. Whatever online teaching skill you want to pick up next, we’ve got you covered! And remember, Faculty Support Virtual Drop-In Hours are every Tuesday 3-4 pm via this Zoom link.

Open & Active Video Workshop Registration Extended through Friday!Null

Register by Friday, September 16, at noon

Looking to increase student engagement and lesson effectiveness? Don’t miss the hands-on Open & Active Video Workshop, Monday, September 19 to Monday, October 3, 2022.

This workshop, sponsored by the CUNY-SPS OER Initiative, involves one week of asynchronous discussions on the pedagogical role of video, active learning, and OER, and training on how to create a video. In the second week participants create a video activity to complement the materials in their courses. See the full workshop description including learning objectives and workshop requirements on our Advanced Workshops page. Eligible faculty who complete the OAV Workshop are compensated with 7 NTA hours and are eligible for OER Initiative funding to create an additional video during the semester.

Registration extended through Friday, September 16, at noon: https://forms.gle/nBWwT62HLYge3doB8

Open Pedagogy in the Teaching Matters Series

On Friday, September 16 from 2 PM – 3 PM, Shawna Brandle from Kingsborough Community College will present “Choosing Your Own Adventure: Increasing Student Engagement with Open Pedagogy.” For more details and to register, click here! To read more about Teaching Matters offerings, or to submit a proposal for a workshop, please see Teaching Matters – The City University of New York.

NullOER and Open Pedagogy

(Oct 17-20, 2022)

October is a big month for the Open community. OpenEd22 takes place Oct. 17- 20 online. This is a great conference for anyone interested in OER or Open Pedagogy, with talks from experts in the field, higher ed leadership, open activists, and faculty sharing their experiences of implementing, revising or creating OER with their students. Early registration rates run until Thursday, Sept. 15 & the CUNY SPS OER Initiative can support a few early registration fees for part-time faculty. If interested, please contact Sarah Kresh (sarah.kresh@cuny.edu).

NullOur OER & Open Pedagogy Workshop for SPS Faculty runs Monday, October 24 to Sunday, November 6, 2022. This workshop introduces the theory and tools that support OER and Open Pedagogy in online courses. Extending on the content of past sessions, this workshop is open to all SPS faculty, even those who’ve previously completed the OER Workshop or who’ve developed OER or ZTC courses. If you’re interested in creating materials with your students, giving them a more authentic way of demonstrating their learning, or simply replacing expensive materials with ZTC content and activities, this is the workshop for you!

Eligible faculty who complete the OER & Open Pedagogy Workshop are compensated with 7 NTA hours thanks to the CUNY SPS OER Initiative. More information and eligibility criteria can be found on our SPS Faculty Community Site’s Advanced Workshops page.

Registration open through Monday, October 17: https://forms.gle/SVZJuSVHxyRh4yYs8

We’ll be offering a short intro to OER and Open Pedagogy in early October as well, so if you are curious about the subject but would like to know more before enrolling in a two-week workshop, check out the Fall Trainings listed below.


Fall Trainings for SPS Faculty

Panopto for SPS Faculty 

Creating video content just got a whole lot easier! Whether you need to record a welcome message, a lecture, or a recorded announcement for your class, Panopto, the SPS video platform integrated into Blackboard, can make it happen in a few clicks. Participants will learn how to access Panopto and its features through Blackboard, focusing on a workflow to create, organize, and publish your video content. Special attention will be paid to viewing permissions, sharing content between courses, and captioning. Join us to boost your video skills!

A Cut Above: Making Your Videos More Professional 

Learn simple steps to present yourself on video to enhance your connection with your students by looking more professional. Nowadays, we have multiple opportunities to be on camera for synchronous virtual meetings or recording content for our classes. Having your students see and hear you builds rapport and sparks excitement for learning. No matter if you’re trying this for the first time or have been creating media for a while, this session we’ll give you a set of guides to make your videos look more professional.

Personalizing Your Panopto Video

As many of us have learned, using Panopto to create a video is a simple process. But many of us have yet to unlock the powerful features inside Panopto that can transform video to maximize its impact. In this session, participants will look inside the Panopto video editor to discover tools for trimming or cutting video, adding additional content (ex. YouTube videos), or challenging students with in-video quizzes. Finally, we’ll review Panopto’s robust viewer analytics that tells us who has watched the video and for how long. Join us to make your next video go from good to great!

VoiceThread for SPS Faculty

This training will introduce VoiceThread, an asynchronous video discussion board. VoiceThread allows faculty and students to create multimedia presentations that creates a classroom community through threaded audio and video discussions. You and your students can add commentary to a presentation by means of microphone, webcam, keyboard, or phone. The ensuing conversation feels like a live classroom, but in an online environment. In this session, SPS faculty will learn how to create a VoiceThread and integrate it into their Blackboard course.

Screencast-O-Matic: Effective Editing Techniques

Screencast-O-Matic (SCOM), a powerful video creating and editing tool, is available to SPS Faculty. In this session, participants will learn effective editing techniques that will direct your audience’s attention to what’s important. Used in conjunction with Panopto, the SPS video hosting platform, SCOM makes advanced editing features simple. The result, you can produce a polished video with a few simple steps.

Getting Started with Blackboard Mobile

In this session, we will explore the Blackboard Mobile application and gain an understanding of how students experience learning on the go. We will also discuss the major interface differences between Blackboard Mobile and Blackboard for Desktop and best practices for online course design for mobile devices.

Making your Blackboard Course Content Accessible

Want to make your documents and Blackboard course content accessible but don’t know where to start? Join us for a training session to learn how! We will cover accessibility principles and provide practical tips on how to make your documents (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and Blackboard course content (such as font, headers, images, charts, graphs, hyperlinks) accessible to all your students.

Accessible Multimedia

In this session, we will discuss tools for multimedia such as Collaborate and Zoom. We will cover tips such as how to add captioning and transcription for audio and video as well as how to write alt-text for images.

From Open Educational Resources (OER) to Open Pedagogy

In this one-hour session, we’ll introduce the why and how of OER—materials that are free and openly licensed for you or your students to reuse, retain, revise, remix, and redistribute. We’ll also explore how student-created or student-remixed OER can fulfill the goals of open pedagogy—an approach that invites students to create knowledge rather than to merely consume it. If you’re curious about OER & Open Pedagogy, but aren’t sure you want to commit to the two-week workshop, this training offers an intro to the topic and the types of projects possible in the workshop.

ePortfolio for SPS Faculty: An Introduction

If this is the first time you are using Digication’s ePortfolio in your course or you need a quick refresher, this workshop will help both new and existing faculty get acquainted with ePortfolio. We will discuss the current practice of using ePortfolio at CUNY SPS, navigate through the tool in a course site, review the responsibilities of instructors when using ePortfolio, and showcase the various support resources available for both students and instructors. There will also be time to answer any questions you might have about ePortfolios at CUNY SPS. Click here to register for this workshop.

  • Thurs. Sep 29, 1-2pm
  • Weds. Oct 12, 10-11am
  • Tues. Oct 25, 6-7pm

Faculty Support Drop-In Hour

Need live faculty support? Stop by during our Faculty Support Drop-In Hour every Tuesday 3-4pm to speak to an OFDIT team member who can help.

You can access the drop-in hour session via the Zoom link.


As always, OFDIT is here to help with any questions you may have. We are available for one-on-one support and would be happy to schedule a Zoom call to discuss any questions you may have. You can contact us at facultysupport@sps.cuny.edu.

All the best,

Your OFDIT Team