Tools/Resources

These tools give you many engaging options for how you may like to present your work in the online classroom. The tutorials below weren’t necessarily created for this class; they were chosen for their comprehensiveness and availability.

Slideshows

Voicethread is a unique way of recording slideshow-esque presentations. First, you upload images into your Voicethread project, images that function as slides. Then, you arrange those images in the order that suits your project. Finally, record what you want your audience to hear (you can also type, record your face, and even draw over the slide) when they are viewing a particular slide. Record audio/video/etc. for each slide, and when a classmate presses “Play,” it will go through all the slides in turn.

Viewers can also comment on each slide, in the same manner in which the presenter recorded his/her presentation.

Timelines

Sutori is a very easy-to-use tool for creating a timeline and populating that timeline with media such as video, audio, images and more. In that sense, it is like a blogging platform in that it can act as a canvas for displaying a whole range of different presentations, media and data, except that it organizes all of the information in graphic, chronological format.

Screencasting

Screencast-O-Matic is a free program that allows you to record your screen. You can narrate a presentation and record from your computer screen!

Like Screencast-O-Matic, but more premium. It costs money, but gives you far more tools for tailoring your screencasting video.

Comics

Comics are a legitimate means for expressing big ideas, and Pixton is the most powerful comics-creation tool out there.

Audio

Soundcloud is like YouTube, but for audio. You may record directly into Soundcloud by simply creating an account and clicking “Record,” or you may upload Mp3 files which you have had a chance to edit ahead of time using tools such as Audacity (covered below). When sounds are uploaded to Soundcloud, they are then very easily distributed by embedding them in yours or the class’s blogs, or simply linking to where they are in Soundcloud.

Free Soundcloud accounts allow 2 hours of uploaded material.

If you would like to edit what you record before you publish/submit it, then you have several options. If you use a Mac, likely it has come preinstalled with Garage Band, an excellent sound-editing tool that, though it is geared toward recording instruments, is fine for recording/editing spoken audio as well. But perhaps you use a PC, or Garage Band is simply not your cup of tea, in which case you should try Audacity. Audacity is free for Mac and PC, and has a whole lot of tutorials on how to use it.

Video

YouTube is…YouTube. If you want to host a video you’ve made for class anywhere and embed/link-to it in your or this class’s blog, YouTube is one of the best options available. Another option you may already prefer is Vimeo, but if you’re just starting out, YouTube is the easiest and has the best documentation.

Curation Tools

Curation can be a useful way for students to gather and share stories and sources that they find interesting or useful. The way curation works is: You collect and organize existing documents/media for the consumption of others. What you collect, and how you organize, depends on the tool.

Storify is a fantastic way of curating existing material into a narrative structure, or story, with a beginning middle and end. The story is how readers will experience what you’ve curated.

It is often used to organize the tons of media that people create around well-documented disasters, as you can see here.

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GEOS 380