Academic Technology @ Palomar College

Intersession Dates and Times

Intersession Dates and Times
As the Fall 2014 semester grinds to a halt, I wanted to take a moment to let everyone know about what is going on in Academic Technology for the next couple weeks. Blackboard support will be unavailable after Friday, December 19, 2014, all the way through until Monday, January 5, 2015. After that, support will resume our routine hours, Monday through Thursday from 8 AM until 8 PM, and Friday from 8 AM until 4 PM. And, as always, if you need to get in touch with Blackboard support, you can submit a help request at any time. Also of note on the Blackboard front, Palomar’s Blackboard system will be...
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Faculty Post-semester Blackboard Wrap-up

Faculty Post-semester Blackboard Wrap-up
The Fall 2014 semester is wrapping up now, and there are a couple issues faculty who use Blackboard should really make the time for. The short version is: Export Archive Download Copy Validate Export your course. Since the process of adding instructor content to the course is done now, this would be a great time to save off a copy of all your course content. In other words, back up your work. The process is fairly simple, as this video explains:     Archive your course. I recommend this step immediately after posting final grades into eServices. Create an archive of your course, which...
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Personalizing Blackboard Content

Personalizing Blackboard Content
I’m certain you’ve received bulk messages, either on paper through the mail or (often as spam) though email. Often those messages use a function known as “mail merge” to modify the content of the message to show personalized information. Although that sort of function can be awkward if used poorly, Blackboard has limited options to get a “mail merge” effect out of your Blackboard content. This function was originally intended for developers to be able to list personal details, but these “tokens” will work for students and instructors within Blackboard...
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Generating Boilerplate Content within Word

Generating Boilerplate Content within Word
Perhaps you’ve been in this situation: Need to work on the formatting of a document, but the author hasn’t provided the text yet. What you really need is some sample text in your Word document, but you don’t want to go out and find some text online, possibly for fear of getting interested in some new topic. (Or is that just me?) Microsoft Word actually has a function just for this purpose. Actually, I lie, it has two functions just for this purpose. To see this in action, fire up Word, open up a new document and type (without the quote marks, of course) “=lorem(5,8)” and...
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Getting Loopy with PowerPoint 2013

Getting Loopy with PowerPoint 2013
If your classes go anything like my workshops do, then you seldom start right on time. I always hate “wasting time” out of my scheduled class time, and wish I could do something to make that time more useful. I’d really like to have something like the pre-previews content that movie theaters run; you know, the stuff with trivia games, ads, and the like that play before the house lights dim. There’s always an array of things to tell my learners about, and having that showing on the classroom projector while I do other things until class starts seems ideal. PowerPoint to the...
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