This presentation will demonstrate the use of online platforms LibGuides and Classmarker as a model for creating virtual textbooks and assessments that support a “flipped” classroom and allow the instructor to focus on student interaction and skills practice during in-class time. The presenter will highlight the strengths and weaknesses of these platforms and offer insights from three years of classroom use, including how to anticipate and resolve potential challenges with moving to an online approach for textbooks and assessment. This includes considering technology policies for one’s syllabus, providing ample time for student questions before a deadline, and mitigating the impact of internet service outages. Participants will be introduced to LibGuides and Classmarker and leave with new ideas for using these tools, as well as others, in their own courses.
LibGuides is a content management system that facilitates the creation of online “guides” which can function as stand-alone webpages or as part of a larger website. A “guide” can become a specialized virtual textbook that is tailored to the needs of students while also being responsive to new developments. The LibGuides platform allows the instructor to integrate video and other multimedia content into the text alongside class handouts and other course materials, and students receive the benefit of an efficient, customizable textbook.
Classmarker is an online quiz creation platform that affords instructors the benefit of statistical insight and responds to students’ desire for instant feedback. Classmarker supports many question types, from multiple-choice to essay format, and allows students to save a quiz in progress for later completion. Many quizzes can be automatically graded after submission and can include an email confirmation to be sent to the student. Instructors are provided with an overview of student scores in addition to analysis of the results for individual questions. Students receive immediate feedback, and the instructor simultaneously gains a better understanding of which questions the class may be struggling with.
Utilizing tools such as LibGuides and Classmarker has the beneficial impact of supporting a classroom environment where the instructor can focus class time on demonstrations and hands-on practice rather than slideshow lectures and pop quizzes. While each instructor will need to determine the appropriate balance of instruction time within and outside of class time, the use of these tools may greatly expand the horizons of what is possible beyond the classroom.