From WSU Technology Knowledge Base
- Audience - All WSU instructors interested in making D2L Home Pages more interactive.
- Interview Date - 9/21/2010
- Tools Used - D2L Custom Home Pages
Meet the Faculty Member
Dr. Brandy Schillace received her MA and PhD from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. At Case she taught a variety of courses and took part in a co-lead seminar for energy conservation. Her primary focus is, however, on 18th century British Literature and intersections of pedagogy, literature and medicine. As part of this varied focus, Brandy is the Managing Editor for Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry, an international journal of cross-cultural health research. She has taught courses in composition and rhetoric to creative writing and technical communications for engineers.
Viewing the Interview Segments
The full interview is divided into four segments. Select play to begin viewing Segment 1. Switch to other segments at any time using the right and left handles on the sides of the viewer or by mousing over the bottom of the viewer to reveal the segment thumbnails and clicking one to move to that segment. Mouse over the top of the viewer to reveal the current segment title. Brief segment descriptions are listed below.
- How are you customizing your D2L courses? Brandy explains why she likes to customize each course home page here and it allows here to introduce herself and the class to her students.
- Could you talk more about widgets and the way you have customized your course home pages? In this segment Bandy describes how she uses RSS feeds, YouTube, and other types of custom widgets on her course home pages to drive students to relevant content that she requires them to use classes.
- Describe some of the outcomes your are seeing as a result of this custom home page? The sense of interaction among student, herself, and their connection to the wider World is an important outcome Bandy feels she gained from this enhancement of her D2L homepage. Student reflection essays also support the impact this innovation is having on the way they learn.
- What advice do you have for faculty considering customize their D2L course home pages? Brandy suggest that there should be no fear when to spend some time familiarizing yourself with these tools and trying to see what works best for you. She added that it was helpful to draw upon the TLT Services people to guide her towards tools she should try, based on her needs, and learn how to use them when she decides to adopt a specific tool.
- Make the content, resources, and other items on your D2L course home page vital to class assignments so that students are forced to access and read these materials regularly. This keeps them engaged with the content and connected to other students.
- Connection to the larger community with resources such as the New York Times allows Brandy to build a wider understanding of the content and provide a relevant connection to the curriculum of the class.
- Reflection essays, discussion boards, and class comments indicate that they are engaged and actively applying the content she is sharing on the custom D2L course home page.