DEU EdTech Quick Tips – Issue 60

In this Issue: Enhancements for your Remote Teaching Practices

    • Bridging the Distance – Entry
    • Champions of Reimagined Assessment
    • Drawing and Whiteboard Tools for Synchronous Online Teaching
    • DIY Document Cameras in Zoom and Panopto
    • Introduction to Open Educational Practices
    • Webex Retirement Dates
    • DEU support and contact information

Bridging the Distance Entry

Rebekah Bennetch, a Lecturer with the School of Professional Development in the College of Engineering shared her experiences Bridging her own Distance dilemmas in a recent contest entry. In this post Rebekah describes finding an online community of educators on Twitter to help fill the professional development gaps the pandemic had left her with.

While engaging in a wealth of tweets, keynotes, and an #ungraded book club Rebekah found a great way to adapt her 15-page syllabus into a visual course map that has helped students better navigate the expectations and organization of her online course.  See a sample of the visual design and hear more about the opportunities Rebekah found to help Bridge the Distance.

Champions of Reimagined Assessment

Dr. Eliana Elkhoury, assistant professor at Athabasca University, is seeking faculty members and instructors to be part of a project called the Champions of Reimagined Assessment. Many faculty members and instructors have moved beyond traditional or standard exams and are using innovative ways to assess students’ learning. Through this project, Dr. Elkhoury is looking to inspire others and humanize assessment by highlighting the different strategies that are used to assess students. Eventually, the hope is to create a larger community of instructors who are interested in learning about and using alternative assessment.

Dr. Elkhoury is looking for instructors from all disciplines to be our champions. If you have used innovative, creative, new, different strategies to assess students in minor or major assessments then you are a Champion of Reimagined Assessment and your potential involvement in this project would be welcome.

Involvement in this project would mean participation in the collaborative creation of digital content for educators interested in reimagining assessment. You would create brief snippets showcasing your assessment innovations that can be shared on social media platforms to introduce faculty and instructors to different forms of alternative assessment. These snippets could take different forms such as a video (less than 2 minutes), images, infographics, or any form of digital content that can be posted on social media.

If you are interested in being part of this project or if you have any questions, so please feel free to email

Also, please do forward this invitation to faculty and instructors who you think might be interested.

This project is funded by Athabasca University APDF/SSHRC Knowledge Mobilization Grant.

Drawing and Whiteboard Tools for Synchronous Online Teaching

During synchronous online teaching sessions, there are many reasons why you may wish to draw or sketch out an idea with students visually, or use a “digital whiteboard” tool to collaborate and organize thoughts during brainstorming or live discussions. You might want your class as a whole, or smaller groups within it, to build meaning with complex ideas by creating mind maps or other visual organizers. You might want students to share ideas, or media from around the web, on a collaborative bulletin board filled with “sticky notes” and hyperlinks. You also may just find it easier to communicate certain ideas, or guide students through a process, by drawing something out “by hand” — an approach that mimics many tried-and-true teaching approaches based on chalkboards in the classroom.


DIY Document Cameras in Zoom and Panopto

Back in April of 2021 we showed you how to use your phone as a document camera in WebEx. Now that the University has moved our video conferencing software to Zoom we thought we’d revisit this topic and show you a few ways that you can get a DIY document camera setup for synchronous and asynchronous use.

Introduction to Open Educational Practices

GMCTL has a new open course, Introduction to Open Educational Practices! The course starts on February 1, 2022. To find out more about what this course has to offer have a look at a blog post on with all the details here.

USask instructors can register through the GMCTL system. Everyone else can use the link to the Google Form in the blog post. The course is designed for post-secondary instructors, K-12 teachers, and anyone preparing to be either.

Webex Retirement Dates

As you know, USask has moved to Zoom as our web conferencing solution and Webex will be retired in the spring. The last day to use Webex for meetings is Wednesday, May 4, 2022.

Once Webex is retired, recordings made in Webex will no longer be available. If you need to retain any of your Webex recordings, you will need to download them from Webex before June 3rd, 2022. You can archive the recordings by uploading them to OneDrive .

If these recordings are to be used in future online course materials, you can upload the videos to your Panopto account and embed them in your Canvas courses in the usual way.

Questions can be directed to

Zoom training is also available.