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2016

The Macmillan Learning Client Success Specialist role is a unique role that requires a unique skillset. When hiring a new Client Success Specialist, there are three main questions we ask. 1. Is the candidate a subject matter expert with teaching experience? 2. Can the candidate communicate effectively both in writing and verbally? 3. Does the candidate have a passion for learning and furthering education? The answer to each of these questions must be “yes” or the candidate is not the right fit for the position.

 

Our Client Success team provides peer to peer pedagogical support to instructors. This level of support often leads to in depth conversations with instructors on how best to use the resources provided in our products to teach certain topics in a college classroom. In order to make the best recommendations possible in these situations, the Client Success Specialist needs to be well versed in the subject matter, the classroom setting, and the platform and resources being delivered to the instructor.

 

Communication is key in the relationship between Client Success Specialist and instructor. The CSS must be able to understand what an instructor is asking for and then be able to communicate the resolution back to the instructor clearly either via email or over the phone. When things are not clearly communicated it can lead to unnecessary frustration for the instructor and the CSS. In addition to being able to communicate effectively with customers, there is a large need for effective internal communication as well. Each CSS needs to be able to articulate to other groups within the company what our instructors are experiencing in the product. Members of the Client Success team work closely with members of other teams across the company including marketing, sales, editorial, and product/technology. Free flowing communication between all of these groups is what leads to the best customer experience possible.

 

Finally, when hiring a Client Success Specialist, we look for someone who has a passion for education and learning. A CSS is in the business of helping instructors create successful learning experiences for their students. While each instructor might define the metrics of that success a bit differently, at the end of the day we all want the students who participated in the course to leave the course with a better understanding of the subject matter that was presented. We want students to be successful after they move on from the classroom and into the world.

 

The role of Client Success Specialist must be filled by someone who exhibits the characteristics outlined here, or the candidate will not be successful in the role.

Congratulations to Professor Donna McGregor and Professor Pam Mills of Lehman College (CUNY) in New York for winning an Innovation award! Donna and Pam were recently awarded the Online Learning Consortium's Innovation Award for their creative use of Sapling in their introductory Chemistry courses. Both Donna & Pam are proponents of 'flipped learning' and employ digital learning solutions to guide students through the learning process.

 

The OLC Innovation Award recognizes faculty-led teams and institutions for advancing undergraduate student success through the adoption of digital courseware. The award program is funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Postsecondary Success Program.

 

Donna McGregor earned her PhD in Analytical Chemistry from The Graduate Center, CUNY. Her personal research interests lie mainly in the fields of Chemical Education pedagogy and technetium-99 radioactive waste remediation. Her recent work in chemical education pedagogy has led to venturing into online education. With Professor Pam Mills she authored a hybrid general chemistry course for 250 students that piloted in the Spring of 2014. 

 

Pamela Mills is a professor of chemistry at Lehman College. She spends most of her time working with Prof. McGregor on the design of a General Chemistry hybrid course taken by all chemistry students at Lehman College. Prof. Mills is also the PI of the PERC Program – a novel instructional model for transforming the high school math and science classrooms. Most of her time is spent working with chemistry high school teachers or designing videos for the college classroom.

 

For more information on the OLC Innovation Award, click here.

One of the forms of assessment in LaunchPad is called "Data Connections" and is built differently than some of the other measures like LearningCurve and Quizzing. Data Connections has more of an integrative and essay aspect with regard to how it presents itself to students. In this way, it creates a place where students have some free choice in what kind of content they want to look at and how they respond to the assessment prompt.

 

Below, I am using a Data Connections activity from the LaunchPad system on human growth and development. This one is listed as "Common Genetic Diseases and Conditions" - clicking on it will bring up a new window.

 

 

This particular Data Connections has 4 pages to it. In the screenshot below you will see how Data Connections presents an opening page that introduces the topic. 

 

 

Clicking on the "Get Started" button at the bottom brings up the interactive table that I have highlighted in yellow below. The student is able to click through the table and learn about each of these different genetic diseases and conditions.

 

Personally, I like having information presented in this way as it allows for the student to become more personally invested in exploring the content provided - contrast this to just reading something in a textbook. While the latter isn't non-educational, having the material appear in a way that is different, I think, helps to capture the student's attention and thereby, hopefully, fosters retention.

 

 

On the next page, in the following screenshot, the student is prompted to enter a short essay on the previous information that was just presented to them. Unique to Data Connections is how the student's response is very wide open, allowing them to select from a wide range of possibilities as to how they want to show what they learned. 

 

As an important note, being an instructor, you will want to be sure to go back and review the grade for this activity. Data Connections provides a tentative full-credit grade after the student has submitted an answer. As a result, a review by the instructor ensures that the student is learning the concepts and ideas that are required by the course. 

 

 

Finally, the last page of Data Connections will let the student know that their work has been submitted. It will also provide a list of references that can be referenced on a term paper or used by the student for further learning. 

 

 

Data Connections, a unique form of assessment in LaunchPad, has the benefit of providing the student with a broad range of possibilities of how to respond and demonstrate their knowledge. It does this through presenting the material interactivity and by using essay questions as a way to gauge the student's progress. Data Connections is another feature unique to the LaunchPad learning system.

In Part 1 of the series “LaunchPad”, I focused on how to use LaunchPad in your classes and what tools are helpful to use.  Part 2 of the “LaunchPad” series went on to discuss the most important aspect, the benefits to the students in using the product.

 

The 3rd and final part of the “LaunchPad” series is the benefits to the instructor. As an instructor, I continue to appreciate the benefits of efficiency, ease, and freeing up class time to teach using hands-on activities.  In freeing up class time, I have been able to improve my teaching to apply the information, complete activities, and drive concepts home more for students.  The use of digital products also enables our culture’s desirable use of technology in the classroom. 

 

Breaking down these instructor benefits in more detail, let’s start with the most significant benefit to me…efficiency. I am so grateful for the time digital learning saves me from grading and entering grades.  Assigning LearningCurve assignments, as well as learning to use LearningCurves, is fast and easy.  Having students take their LearningCurves and quizzes online frees up more class time for me to teach and complete application activities.  I also appreciate that the quizzes and LearningCurves are already created for me.  Again, it saves me time not to have to write these, and I can even edit them if I wish.  I am also so pleased and confident when I can provide students with more affordable options since purchasing the online version is usually lower cost.  A repeat from a previous post, it forces students to actually USE their text, and delve into the material.  Especially in the communication discipline, I find it provides students with a better understanding, with the ability to apply it, and to RETAIN it.  Thus, I have seen my students be more successful and have higher grades.  Since students all have different learning styles, it adds the benefit to serve many different learning styles.  To reiterate, it also gives students an opportunity to use technology in their learning.

 

In summary, my 3-part series “LaunchPad” discussed the digital products I use, how I use LaunchPad, the benefits to the students and to the instructor.  The benefits I’ve seen have been well worth the use.  If you have any hesitation on beginning the process of using digital products, I emphasize that it is not difficult, and is fast and easy to use.  If you still waver on the decision, Macmillan offers many opportunities to train and help you.   With the benefits to the students and instructor and the ability to get ahead on the latest technological savvy classroom, I encourage you to jump on board.

It is important not to forget that a main part of student learning takes place from actually reading the textbook - whether this textbook is either a traditional hardcover book or, with regard to what we will be talking about, an online version of the text. As a result, it is exceedingly necessary that an educator choose a text that is conducive to their own pedagogical values. What's more, given the increasingly online nature of higher education and content delivery, picking a text that excels in both of these areas may also be high on the priority list for instructors looking for a classroom textbook. 

 

The eBook in LaunchPad does just that: it provides an integrative and immersive experience for student and educator alike. In what follows, I am hoping to show you some of the features of the LaunchPad eBook that I have utilized in my courses. But first, you will see below, that I have highlighted how to access the eBook from the main screen within the LaunchPad system. It is always displayed in the left tab menu for easy access. Let's check out "Chapter 1" and see what happens...

 

 

Educators that have used LaunchPad in the past will be familiar with the drop down menu that breaks the chapter into various themes and sections. The eBook is organized in the same way. As such, it becomes easy to navigate because the student or instructor can topically navigate through the content, as opposed to having to thumb through the pages as is the case with a traditional textbook. 

 

 

Within the actual eBook, you will see a couple of things I have highlighted in yellow below. First, I wanted to point out that the eBook in LaunchPad will always display the page number that corresponds to the material 'brick-and-mortar' textbook. This is especially helpful if you have a mixed bag of students, some of which may be using the eBook and others a traditional textbook. What's more, in terms of standard citation practices, I have found that having this page number easily allows students to cite the eBook using various scholarly formats - for example, APA or MLA. This way, there is no confusion, which is generally the case when citing an eBook or an online source.

 

I also wanted to show you how there is interactive media content integrated directly into the eBook. For example, you will see that the yellow arrow shows a video clip that students can play from within the actual eBook - not having to jump back and forth between the book and some other place within the LMS platform. 

 

 

In the screenshot below, there are several items which I have noted. Looking at the text that I highlighted, you will see that the instructor can add notes directly into the eBook, and these notes can be viewable by the entire class or made private, accessible exclusively to the instructor. You may also see that I can add a note to the highlighted material (more on this later). 

 

Next, the circle in the upper right hand corner will draw your attention to additional notation features. For instance, you may add a general note to the top of this eBook page, you can clear all of your highlighting, or you can delete all of your notes. This allows for the ability to master edit this section of the eBook. Finally, I also wanted to highlight how the "Read On" button at the bottom of the page allows students to seamlessly continue learning and reading, right into the next section. In other words, there is no skipping back and forth between different screens or apps, giving both educator and student an environment that is similar, if not better, than a 'normal' reading context.

 

 

Returning to the highlighting feature I mentioned earlier, you will see that once I select to actually highlight the text it will turn yellow. I have also, in the example below, selected to add a note to that particular highlighted material. The note, again, can be made viewable students or retained just for instructor notation. I have found this feature helpful when I have wanted to draw attention to a certain concept that the class may be using in a term paper or in that week's discussion post. 

 

 

All in all, I have tried to give an overview of the eBook that is integrated within the LaunchPad system - highlighting, along the way, the quality of integration, between media and text, as well as the ability to pedagogically insert your own values as an educator directly into the eBook. As a result, I hope I have gone to show that the eBook is another example of the great interactive tools that are a part of the LaunchPad suite!

In Part 1 of the series “LaunchPad”, I focused on how to use LaunchPad in your classes and what tools are helpful to use.

 

The important aspect, besides how and what to use in LaunchPad, is the benefits of using LearningCurve to the students.  I discovered these benefits from observation of students and their grades, speaking with them, and surveying students at the end of the semester.  I ascertained most students see the benefits and appreciate use of LearningCurve.  Students are benefitting by preparing in reading their material more, retaining more information, appreciating the ease of use, being provided an affordable option, and providing successful learning opportunities in a stress-free environment.

 

To break down the benefits more precisely, the most common benefits include: 

 

Students learn and retain the material better. In the past, I always struggled with encouraging students to read their text; however, they now actually read the e-text and remember the content! 

 

The digital platform is user friendly.  Students appreciate having to only log in through one site (through BlackBoard), and once they have logged in the first time, they never are required to log in again if they enter through BlackBoard.  It surprised me how much students dislike login pages because they won’t remember their login information. 

 

Having immediate access to the text online anytime from anywhere is extremely helpful.  Students have been known to access the text and quizzes from school, home and even work during their busy, mobile schedules.

 

Students concur that online quizzes from home are preferred over in-class quizzes and exams.  They value the ability to take an exam on their own time when they are comfortable, because they are able to use resources, and have the ability to take the quiz during the time of day they learn best or when they have time.  Students also like that they can start an assignment, save it, and return to it later.  In short, students are “testing” well because they are completing it in a stress-free environment.

 

It is also satisfying for students to see their grade transfer and appear in their BlackBoard gradebook.  It provides for a productive feeling with immediate feedback.  It also keeps students from having to “record-keep” or save hard copies of assignments, quizzes and exams.

 

Students expressed gratitude that the professor actually used the materials that students were required to purchase, and they were grateful for the reasonable price.  As surprising as it is to me, students complain that many professors never refer to or use the products students spent a lot of money on.  In using this product, students are offered an affordable option that they will indeed use and learn from.

 

The digital product saves students time in many ways, from the ability to purchase e-text access online (no trips to the expensive bookstore!), having access any time, having their grades tracked and transferred for them, etc…

In the high technology culture we now live in, most students have trouble keeping their technology devices put away.  Further, many young students arrive at college having greatly used technology in their middle and high school education.  Whether we like it or not, simply put, this is how they now learn.  Therefore, if many students learn from technology, prefer technology, and don’t want to go without it, I see it as a benefit to harness technology and incorporate it into their learning.

 

Check back for the third and final post on how using LaunchPad can benefit you, the instructor.

“Professor, may we take more quizzes than what’s assigned?  Will you go ahead and assign more LearningCurves?  I’d like to do some ahead of schedule.”  Do these questions from students seem like an unrealistic dream?  As unrealistic as they sound, they have indeed been asked on numerous occasions since I started using LearningCurve assignments through LaunchPad.

 

Before using digital products, most instructors dream of having motivated students who plan ahead and have a desire to learn.  Although we may have a few of these students here and there, they are not common.  Therefore, when I have a product that encourages a student to work hard and work ahead, I jump on it.  Using Macmillan Digital Products, including LaunchPad and its LearningCurve, have proven to be extremely beneficial to my students and me (the instructor).  I’d like to encourage you to jump on board, too, by sharing the following four helpful aspects to using LaunchPad:  1.) Which products I use; 2.) How I use LaunchPad; 3.) The benefits to the students; and 4.) The benefits to the Instructor.  In this first part of my LaunchPad series, I will focus on which products I use and how I use them.

 

First, let’s start with which digital products I use.  I have used several different publishing companies’ digital learning, and LaunchPad is easily the most user friendly thus far.  I currently use LaunchPad for both “Real Communication” (Intro to Speech Communication) and “A Speaker’s Guidebook” (Public Speaking) texbooks.

 

Second, how I use LaunchPad may be helpful.  It’s important to note that when using digital learning, such as LaunchPad, it should appear in your syllabus so students realize the importance of their use of the product to their learning and overall grade from the beginning of the semester.

 

I have LaunchPad mentioned in four places within my syllabus to drive home the significance.  Within my syllabus, LaunchPad appears in the sub headed sections, “Required Text/Materials”, “Course Policies: Exams/Quizzes”, “Grading Evaluation”, and “Class Schedule.”

 

An example of one of the places in my syllabus that LaunchPad appears is in the image below.  You will also see from the image that students have immediate access to the Publisher’s Help Desk contact information.  This will ensure the instructors do not have to deal with any technical difficulties that may arise.

Syllabus Image 1

 

Next, let’s also look at how LaunchPad appears in my BlackBoard (Learning Management System/LMS), because this makes access to LaunchPad for both the instructor and students so easy.  Additionally, it enables integration so grades can be transferred over from LaunchPad to the BlackBoard gradebook.

LP in Bb Image 2

 

Now, more importantly, what types of assignments are in LaunchPad?  The specific assignments I use in LaunchPad range from a PRCA (Self-Assessment Score of Communication Apprehension), the e-text, Chapter LearningCurves, “What About You?” Self-Assessments, Tips & Techniques (for Anxiety Reduction), and Videos (Speech samples) and 2-minute video clips.  All of the assignments help students retain and apply the material.

 

As you’ll see, the home page of LaunchPad is similar to a modern technological look students are familiar with.  Furthermore, it is user friendly by having gradebook, calendar, e-text, and assignments with due dates all at first glance when they enter LaunchPad.

LP Home Screen Image 3

 

A favorite assignment feature on LaunchPad is the LearningCurve.  Macmillan describes LearningCurves as an adaptive quizzing and personalized learning program that puts the concept of "testing to learn" into action. It is game-like quizzing motivating students to engage with their course.   

LC Home Screen Image 4

In the sample question, you can see students will be shown if they answered correctly.  If they answered incorrectly, it will further explain why he or she missed it, followed by an opportunity to try again, get a hint, access the e-text, or have it look up the answer for them.  The student has a total number of points to reach to finish the quiz, so the more they answer correctly from the start, the more points and faster they will reach their total.  If they are missing concepts, they will be asked about those again to ensure they learn the content.  At the bottom of the screen, they are able to track their progress.

LC question wrong Image 5

 

After covering how I use the digital products in my classes as well as the great tools available, return in a few days to read part 2 and 3 of this series which will focus on the most important part: the benefits of using LaunchPad to the students and instructor.

Do you get frustrated by computers, tablets, and phones in your class? Do you feel that students are not paying attention to the material you carefully crafted? In a recent conversations with a few intro biology instructors, I discovered some innovative solutions to the in-class technology conundrum.

 

Create a Digital District in your Class

Firstly, acknowledging that everyone is a different learner is important. Sure, some students might be browsing Twitter, but some individuals need stimulation and input to be engaged and effective listeners. In the same way, a student with back problems might choose to stand rather than sit for an hour of class.

 

If one student's screen is distracting other students, that is a different scenario. You have the option to intervene. However, consider instead creating a “digital district” at the start of class to proactively prevent this issue. You know that all the students with computers are going to cluster on the side of the lecture hall with electrical outlets. So at the start of class, indicate that students using devices can sit in a particular area.

 

Now comes the fantastic part of this deal. You have instant access to any online resource through the students using devices in-class! You let the digital district know that you may call on any student with a device at a moment's notice to look up a fact or confirm a finding.

 

So imagine you are midway through a lecture and a student asks a questions that you don’t know off the top of your head. You might normally respond, “I’ll get you an answer for next time”. But now that you have a Digital District, the world wide web is at the fingertips of your students with devices. Simply ask one or two of them to investigate and come back to get an response a few minutes later.

 

This makes researching, fact checking, and understanding additional material part of the learning process.

How would you like to give your students a form of assessment that only an online system, like LaunchPad, can offer? LearningCurve, one of the most exceptional features of LaunchPad, can do just that. By way of a brief introduction, LearningCurve is a form of adaptive assessment that conforms, dynamically, to how the student is doing during the duration of the assessment. For example, if the student is doing well, LearningCurve will select progressively harder questions and, conversely, if the student is doing poorly, LearningCurve will know to use easier questions for that specific student. In addition, if a student is struggling in one of the content areas of the chapter material, then LearningCurve will select more questions from that domain for the student to answer. For a more extensive account of LearningCurve, make sure to see the FAQ on LearningCurve embedded within LaunchPad and also the instructor's guide on the publisher's website.

 

For the current blog post, I want to give you a brief glimpse of LearningCurve while, along the way, letting you know the experiences I have had using this product. If you have a test course set-up in LaunchPad or have used LaunchPad in the past, you will already know that there may be a couple 'mini' LearningCurve activities embedded within each chapter or module. As a case in point, below, there is a LearningCurve assessment that is focused in on the challenges of caregivers. 

 

 

Clicking on it will reveal the following. You will see that this LearningCurve is focused on two content areas: caregiving styles and becoming boys and girls. You can also see that in order for the student to 'pass' the assignment - in other words, to earn full credit - they have to get to 300 points. This brings up another important point about LearningCurve. Students are guaranteed to earn full credit as long as they finish the assessment. If they do not, then they receive a zero. Personally, I have had many students tell me how much they prefer this form of testing over a traditional, timed quiz. Not only do they like the fact that they are certain to get full credit if they complete it, but they also tell me that the more engaged nature of LearningCurve helps them better retain the material from the chapter. 

 

It is important to realize that the 300 isn't the point value for the assignment. This can be set from the home screen in LaunchPad and is usually, by default, assigned between 5 - 10 points. The 300 just signifies the points the student must earn within that particular LearningCurve. This makes for a kind of game-like experience, which I will explain in more detail later.  

 

 

If you were to click on "View Sample Results" the system will display the following for you to see. Make sure to note that these sample results are in-progress, meaning that none of the students displayed have actually finished the assessment (since their grade would be 100%). It is also important to realize that if these students were not to finish this LearningCurve they would receive a zero from the system, since LearningCurve is, by default, a pass/fail adaptive assessment.

 

What also is helpful is how the system breaks down the scores as per the content domains: caregiving styles and becoming boys and girls. As an educator, this allows me to see that material that the students are struggling with the most thereby informing my next lecture or what I want to present to the class during our next session together. 

 

Let's click on "Preview as Student" at the bottom and see what happens...

 

 

This screen, below, is what students will see when they login to a LearningCurve assessment. Listed are the content areas that are going to be covered so the student may go back and review these parts of the book or eBook if they so choose. Also shown is a link for students if they want some tips on how to do well on LearningCurve - this is especially helpful if the student has never used an adaptive assessment like this before. 

 

 

Clicking on "Begin Activity" will take the student right into the first question. There are several things to note on this page. First, following the yellow arrow, the student can review the eBook directly from the LearningCurve assessment. Pedagogically, this is fantastic because it gives the student a seamless experience, not having to click out of the assessment to access the text, but being able to do it right from LearningCurve. What's more, the button will take the student directly to the section with the relevant information on it - talk about being easy and convenient. 

 

The two yellow circles indicate possible options if the student doesn't feel like they know the answer to the question. They can select "Get a Hint" which will give them some clues as the nature of the answer; but, as you will notice, selecting this will also deduct a few points from point bar at the top, meaning they will likely have to answer additional questions to complete the full assessment. Alternatively, the student may pick "Show Answer" which would result in not earning any points on this particular question and would most likely prompt LearningCurve to select similar questions from this content pool in order to challenge the student before the assessment completes. 

 

 

Highlighting the point bar, in the circle below, brings up how LaunchPad keeps track of the progress during the assessment. The goal is to get the blue, 15 points, all the way to the top of the bar, at 300. The student doesn't ever lose points, although they may not earn points and it may take them awhile to complete the assessment if they do not know the material very well. It is also almost impossible to complete the assessment by just guessing since LearningCurve throttles the questions according to the right or wrong answer. In other words, it would take a very long time to complete it by guessing at random. 

 

Also, you may see that the student has the option to "Take a Break" as indicated by the button below. Selecting this will save the student's position within the assessment and will not deduct any points. In fact, the student has as much time as they need to finish or at least until the assignment comes due, as specified by the instructor on the homepage. 

 

 

The ability to assess students in an engaged, interactive, and adaptive way in one of the major boons of the LaunchPad system. Without a supplemental online component, it is simply impossible to use an adaptive assessment, like LearningCurve, in a traditional brick-and-mortar environment. That's why, in the past, I have enhanced my 'in person' courses with an online LaunchPad and LearningCurve component. In this way, it is possible to get the best of both worlds.

 

Plus, using an adaptive assessment like LearningCurve for an entirely online course is not a feature that every LMS platform has - thus making LaunchPad all the more appealing to instructors who want to use tools that are informed by the latest educational research showing the power of adaptive assessment to aid in student learning. 

I got my assignment for teaching courses next semester. I’m teaching four sections of a course that I have not taught in two years: the research essay. I’ve composed my themes (two, because I’m an overachiever): Conservation and the Founding Fathers and the Constitution, two of my research and teaching loves. This next semester is particularly rough because right now I’m teaching the course just before the research paper course, and those students who choose to take my course again are going to call me on my every move and complain that I “did that last semester.” I need to shake things up, and LaunchPad can help with this.

 

When I was teaching at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, two librarians, Vicky Lebbin and Dave Brier, taught a 50-minute class to first-year composition students on the research question. In that workshop, they asked students to draw (artistically) their research question or thesis (depending). The theory, Dave explained to me, is that if the student can’t draw it, it isn’t concrete or specific enough.  I’m taking that one step further and having them storyboard their research essay.

 

A storyboard is frequently used in the film industry as a planning tool to describe or demonstrate a television episode or film. It is also used in larger graphic novels. These storyboards set the tone for what is to come. Unlike the film storyboards, however, the storyboards I assign are not complex and not drawn or pasted on some type of sturdy material. They do, however, serve the same function.  I will have students post up their storyboards on LaunchPad in Powerpoint form, allowing other students to view them. Viewing other people’s work helps students to increase their self-efficacy because viewing success in others can lead to a student saying, “I can do that!”

 

In the way I’m describing, the storyboard acts as an outline to the research essay. The PowerPoint slides can be arranged any way a student wants, allowing a student to play with organizing an essay in different forms, giving him or her the opportunity to branch out of tried and true ways (think five-paragraph essay, which while having its place, really won’t work for every type of writing students will encounter while in college). Having peers review the storyboard helps a student to refine what he or she wants to present to a reader and provide him or her with yet another tool to help piece together a fully fleshed-out idea of what that final research product will look like. Yet another benefit to the storyboard is that a student can then self-identify what areas of the essay need more support or to tighten the focus and to eliminate some sections of the proposed essay altogether.

 

One of the things that I love about LaunchPad is that I can use it as an archival database. If I start to notice trends or want to check to see if a method or modality works, everything is contained in one place. I can go back to test my theory to see if it has merit. Because I teach using multimodality and digital tools, my students ultimately benefit from LaunchPad, too. Through the use of LaunchPad to upload the assignments on to a discussion post, the students then have an archive to turn to, to view different ideas of presenting material--it’s another tool in the proverbial toolbox, and it’s a tool with many examples. Keeping the storyboards in one place also allows me to demonstrate previous successes to a new group of students every semester that I teach this course. I can access previous courses easily and quickly through LaunchPad’s dashboard, and those storyboards I show to students can create a new generation of storyboards that are even better than when I first created this assignment.

 

For me, having easy access to digital assignments is helpful in multiple ways. College freshmen need to see successful examples, and LaunchPad can provide me with the digital archive that helps me to not only teach courses, but to keep previous assignments, refine those assignments, and ultimately (if I choose to go down this route) to write a publication on the assignments and trends that I’ve noticed. It all adds up to a more robust classroom that I can access any time to help me design, refine, and demonstrate.