Module 8 – Something New

We started offering webinars in the seminary to assist pastors in counseling and in legal matters in the church. This was a group project, but I developed the concept, worked with the participants, and introduced the presenters. We used Adobe Connect and recorded the videos rather than broadcast the webinars live. The Q&A sessions are live. We then recorded each of the webinars and archived them, so that church leaders who missed the live presentation can watch it later.

Here is one of the webinars:



Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Module 8 – 23 Things

23 Things for the Online Teacher to Learn, Do, or Decide

  1. Online teachers should develop a philosophy of education – how much of their education will be the giving of information to the student and how much of their education will be students learning on their own.
  2. Online teachers need to establish and use a blog or other similar program to keep track of their technology experiences.
  3. Online teachers should examine Google tools to determine what would be useful in their classes.
  4. Online teachers should learn to tag websites, using something like diigo.
  5. Online teachers should develop a network of teachers and others with similar interests and/or teaching positions to share their blog with, developing new concepts and technologies, but also maintaining an element of accountability to continue learning.
  6. Online teachers should collect third-party material for use in the classroom; this could be kept on a separate blog or wiki and shared with others in the teacher’s network.
  7. Online teachers should establish an educational Twitter account to share with their network and others.
  8. Online teachers need to take at least one online class to experience a class from the student’s perspective.
  9. Online teachers need to establish a blog for their classes to share with students.
  10. Online teachers should be able to create a Powerpoint presentation.
  11. Online teachers need to experiment with Prezi.
  12. Online teachers need to learn to create creative videos.
  13. Online teachers should become acquainted with eBooks.
  14. Online teachers should become familiar with a Learning Management System.
  15. Online teachers need to take at least one MOOC to comprehend what it is.
  16. Online teachers need to learn to use Jing or a similar program.
  17. Online teachers need to do podcasts for their classes.
  18. Online teachers should become familiar with Skype or similar programs.
  19. Online teachers should be able to create online quizzes and tests.
  20. Online teachers should be able to create online surveys to use in their classes.
  21. Online teachers should conduct live chats with their students, using Elluminate or something similar.!/?id=418
  22. Learn about RSS and establish an RSS account to gather useful and helpful digital information.
  23. Online teachers should experiment with an image generator.

Leave a comment

Filed under MVCR

Module 7 – Teach Back

This week we were required to teach the rest of the class something about cheating or academic integrity in the classroom, or teach the class about a MOOC. Since I deal with graduate level theology students, I do not worry too much about cheating. I don’t mean by that they these students are so sterling that they would never do this, but only that if a seminary student would cheat on a test or a quiz, they have already failed in their ministry.

I am interested in the MOOC concept, so I created a Jing to give some basic information. This JING also gives some hints on succeeding as a MOOC student, should the desire ever become overwhelming. It also includes a link to a MOOC currently being offered – you can check it out at As of this writing, the MOOC is already four weeks old, so it’s too late to get thoroughly involved, but it was an interesting introduction.

My Teach Back can be found at 

Leave a comment

Filed under MVCR

Module 6 – Prezi

I have done videos and podcasts in the past. Jing is pretty simple to use. So I decided to do a Prezi. I have used Powerpoint for years and it works quite well for me. I’m a linear thinker and Powerpoint reinforces that kind of thinking.

Prezi, however, was a challenge. It is anything but linear. The learning curve is not bad; the program is pretty intuitive. But the instructions are not very helpful. My initial finished product was, frankly, pretty crummy. So I revised, and revised, and revised. This short presentation took a little over two hours. It would have taken me about five minutes to do this much Powerpoint, although I probably would have spent 1-2 hours when I was first learning Powerpoint.

I can see some positive uses of Prezi. The first thing that came to my mind was to use it in my church history or Baptist history class to create a time line. The various events could be placed in specific years or decades or centuries on the time line.

Because I am so linear, however, I do not see Prezi replacing Powerpoint in my classes.

Leave a comment

Filed under MVCR

Module 6 – Creating our own Content

What advantages do you see in creating your own content over using content created by others? What disadvantages?

This week’s module is focused on creating our own content, so obviously Norm thinks there is merit to creating our own content. Let me begin with some disadvantages.

1. It’s me. The students in a F2F class are listening to me too much already, and students in an online class are already hearing from me in my notes and course structure, so adding a video or podcast of me as part of the class is nothing special. In Vest’s “Six Steps to Creating High Quality Video Training,” he refers to bringing in an expert for a video. This would eliminate this problem.

2. It’s my material. The students are already getting my perspective on the course, so adding my own material does not bring a new perspective. I might be adding some information in a new format, but not a new perspective.

3. It’s my quality. Let’s face it, most of us are not going to be able to produce high quality videos and maybe not even high quality audio. Additionally, most of us probably don’t have the time to structure our material as well as it should be. The counter to this, however, is that a lot of the podcasts and YouTube videos are not that great either, so our students are probably not going to be disappointed with a low quality video, audio, etc.

I think creating our own content is important. I already create video clips for some of my online classes. I use Adobe Connect, since we use that technology in the classes that we broadcast live. Adobe Connect allows video of the professor, plus recording a whiteboard, Powerpoint, or a PDF file (A Word file cannot be uploaded to Adobe Connect – political problems between Adobe and Microsoft apparently). The screen can be set up to have the professor visible the entire time, or he can switch back and forth between the professor and the course material. I’m not sure if Connect will accept a Prezi; I’ve just started playing with that.

The advantages are:

1. I can control the content. Using content created by others means I have to fit it into my course somehow, or modify my material to fit around the content.

2. While we may not be able to produce high quality video or maybe audio, we should be able to produce good quality Jings or Prezi’s.

3. Since we know our class and its needs and abilities better than anyone, then we know best what material would be useful to and appreciated by them.

4. If there are questions on the material, we can answer them easily. When we use material prepared by someone else, we may not know how to answer questions.

Since I teach at the graduate level, I’m not too concerned about the length of the video or even the quality, but Vest’s “Six Steps to Creating High Quality Video Training” has some helpful information. You can check me out at . Keep in mind that I did not know these videos were supposed to be 3-7 minutes, but fortunately, my students did not know that either, so no one complained. You may need to download some software from Adobe; it’s safe.

Leave a comment

Filed under MVCR

Module 5 – Podcast

Part of the class assignment this week was to find a podcast that could be used in one of my classes.

I was invited to do a Q&A podcast on the Emerging Church. I cover this topic in one of my systematic theology classes. I thought it might be interesting to let the students listen to me in a Q&A podcast rather than just have me teach the material in class. This presents much of the same material, but in a different format.

Leave a comment

Filed under MVCR

Module 5 – Videos

The task this week was to find a suitable video for one of our classes. I teach a class in Christian Apologetics. It is intellectually and philosophically challenging for many of the students. It presents a number of new concepts, it challenges some commonly held positions, and it introduces the student to those who oppose their beliefs. Because of the heavy academic flavor, adding outside voices can be a benefit. This website has a variety of short videos related to the subject. It also includes a view videos of debates between believers and nonbelievers, giving the students the opportunity to hear and see actual theological debates. Some of these are too long for good use in a class, but using clips from some of them would give good material, while encouraging the students to watch the entire video. is the main page. is an excellent example of an interaction between a Muslim and a Christian.

Leave a comment

Filed under MVCR