Academic Technology - Florida State College at Jacksonville

Academic Technology

In Focus: 10 Tips for Spring Semester Success

Faculty Content, Educational Technology, EdTech, DMP, In FocusBrandi Bleak

For this episode, the Educational Technology team reached out to members of the faculty and administration to gather 10 tips that will help faculty to have a great start to the Spring semester. So, let’s get started!  


#10  - Syllabus & Course Preparation Checklist

The folks at FSCJ Online have prepared a comprehensive checklist to help you make sure that you’re able to stay on top of all of the tasks that need to be completed before the start of the Spring semester.

This document lives in the Faculty Exchange and we've added a link below for ease of use and download.  

Syllabus & Course Preparation Checklist document


#9  –  Requesting Course Access

While you are preparing your course content, you may need access to a prior semester’s course for content copy. To request access to a course taught prior to Fall 2017, email EdTech@fscj.edu or submit a ticket via help.fscj.edu.


#8 – Course Availability

The PeopleSoft integration has changed the way that course shells are created within Blackboard. There are a few crucial points that you need to be aware of. 

Each course is shell is created and made available to the instructor 60 days prior to its start date. This means that A session, B session, and C session course are created at different times.

The instructor then decides when they would like the course to be available to students, and has the responsibility of closing it at the end of the semester. This can be done by either setting a date range for the course to be available, or by setting it to be continuously open. The instructor must then remember to close it manually at the end of the term. 

Here's a tutorial on making a course available within Blackboard.


#7 – Know the Important Term Dates

There are important dates that occur throughout the semester like grading windows and drop for non-attendance. These dates are communicated during the term via email from Academic Operations and are available on the fscj.edu site, and can be accessed here.


#6—How to Access the Grading Roster

During the Fall semester, many instructors had difficulty accessing the grade rosters with myFSCJ. 

To access the grade roster, users must navigate to the Faculty tab and click the ‘person’ icon. This is the best way to access the grade roster! Although there are other ways to obtain similar content, they don’t provide the full functionality of allowing you to enter grades.


#5 – Course Evaluations & Survey Results

There’s a new process for Course Evaluations. 

During the last portion of the semester, students have the opportunity to evaluate their courses. This process opens on the Friday before the last week of the class within the Student tab of myFSCJ. The evaluation reports will be made available to instructors and administrators five days after the last day of class.

Course Evaluations Training Document


#4 - Using Kaltura MediaSpace

You may have noticed that the Kaltura Mash-up button is no longer in Blackboard! To access MediaSpace to upload, edit, or curate videos, in the short term, you must use the link that it still located in the Artemis portal under the Technology tab. From there, you can acquire an embed code located in the bottom right-hand corner of the video that can be added to the Blackboard video function to link to your content.


#3 – Finding Information & Answers

With so many new processes and information to keep up with, there are a few spots we recommend that faculty view regularly in order to stay updated. 

The Academic Technology Blog is managed by the Educational Technology team, and contains information about system updates, articles about new technology, apps, and more. It also contains a student section with information that you may want to pass along in your classroom. 

The Blackboard home page is being redesigned to include faculty updates with relevant content, software keys, and important announcements.


#2 Report Issues So They Can Be Reviewed

Check your Blackboard course shells as soon as they’re available and report any questions or concerns through the help desk. The sooner we locate any problems, the easier it will be to fix them. Even if you’re unsure if something is a problem, let us know and we can do the research for you.


#1 – You Have Help!

So, what’s number one? You! Being there when you need us is a top priority for all of us!

There are lots of resources available to assist instructors so you can keep your focus on your students and the classroom. 

Help.fscj.edu is the Information Technology Help Desk site where users can search the Knowledge Base for answers to common issues, submit a ticket that will be routed to the department that can assist, call and speak to a representative, or email in an issue to service.desk.@fscj.edu.

Dedicated Faculty Development Specialists are available on campuses for in-person assistance with Professional Development, Blackboard, myFSCJ, video and photography needs, design work, and much more. Discover more about the Faculty Resource Centers.

Training.fscj.edu is the newly redesigned site by the Training and Organizational Development team where professional development and training content can all be found.

And Faculty members can always contact the Faculty Senate, the Faculty Union, or the Academic Technology Committee to report issues that may need additional review or evaluation.


Thanks for tuning in to this special Spring Semester edition of In Focus! We look forward to supporting you as we work together to make this a great semester!