Mascot for #DevilDiss

Mascot for #DevilDiss
Mascot for #DevilDiss

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Are You a Fan of Rome? Get interviewed for a paper!

Friend needs interviewees for paper  on tv show Rome (HBO/BBC 2005-7). Email  for more information

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Using One Note to Make Your Life Easier

File under: helpful to PhD students or academics

I like handwritten notes. I have notebooks for all classes I teach and take, and they are color coded. I like that I can write in different inks, put colored Post-Its, and color code with highlighters. As much as I am a tech geek, using technology in my classroom, and professionally, I never found an online version that would give me the same thing my hardcopy notebooks gave me. Or even a program that would supplement. While I love Google Docs, and use them all the time, they're not quite integrated enough for me.
Then I was faced with a conundrum for spring semester- one class required a ton of supplemental articles. Last semester, another class had the same thing and it was an ongoing battle all semester of running my home printer toner dry once a week, having to make time to print on campus, and lugging articles around, as well as worrying over leaving items behind. So over winter break I started hunting the Internet for software that could help.
The answer I found was One Note. It comes bundled with Microsoft Office.
And it's a godsend.

These are my notebooks. I have a general one, one for my dissertation, one for classes I teach, or want to teach, and one for current classes. Within each notebook, you can create sections, and within those sections, you can create pages. You can do screenshots and insert them, type on them, highlight, draw, full Word-type functionality, copy and paste from the Internet (and it includes the original link for you). But, to return to my original problem, you can print to it. When you open an Adobe or Word (or any other program) and Control-P, Send to One Note is a feature. It then asks you which notebook, section, and page you want it on.
I printed all the PDF articles to my class notebook, highlighted and took notes in PDF, then was able to export that class section as a PDF, and send it to the campus copy center. It costs $20 to print and copy. Cheap at twice the price! Staples priced the job at $300!
Another feature that I plan to use this semester is that I can scan my handwritten notes, and insert them into the notebooks. The best of both worlds- all my notes in one easily accessible place, and no need to hunt for items later as I study/read for comps or work on my dissertation.
You can also share notebooks with other people, or on SkyDrive. This is great for the same reason GoogleDocs is- I can work on a notebook at home on one computer, and because I have it set to sync whenever something is changed, those changes are auto-updated on my Surface which I take to campus.

The idea as well that keeps rattling around my head is that this would be a great tool to have students use. A student or group could create a notebook as a class project, and then share it with group members and me. I'm not quite sure how I would use it specifically, but it's a great tool to have in the tool box.

So that's my new favorite tech tool for the coming semester! Hope others will try it out and let me know how they use it, and what they think.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Integrating Technology into Your Courses (a basic primer)

I'm presenting at our Spring semester TA training, and thought I'd share some brief thoughts on how integrating technology into your classroom can be easy and beneficial.