#ecorn17 – e-Cornucopia.2017 Teaching with Technology Conference

Conference Website

Oakland University’s e-Cornucopia: Teaching with Technology is an annual one-day technology conference that explores online teaching and learning topics including pedagogy best practices, software, apps, engagement techniques and much more. 2017 marks the 9th consecutive year Oakland University has provided this regional forum for networking and the exchange of ideas.

This conference is intended for higher education faculty, instructional designers, instructional technologists, academic administrators, graduate students and anyone who in interested in incorporating technology into their courses.

New this year! We are introducing the Technology Test Kitchen, which is an area where conference attendees will be able to have hands on experiences with different hardware and software. We will have different ‘Master Chefs’ guiding the experience and sharing how they use the technology but it is meant to be experimental and free form, a kind of maker space for educational technologies!

Session 1: Establishing Learning and Behavioral Expectations

Classrooms often experience the tension been a teacher’s expectation of students and a student’s expectation of the teacher. How can we identify, communicate, and reinforce these expectations to prevent tense student-to-student and student-to-faculty interactions? As a result of this session, participants will be able to differentiate learning and behavioral expectations in the 21st-century university classroom, compare expectations for online and traditional learning environments, and communicate expectations through multiple tools offered in the learning management system (LMS).


Dan Arnold – Manager of Support Services in Oakland University’s e-Learning and Instructional Support department

Christina Moore – Media Manager at the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning at Oakland University

Presentation Slides [PDF]


  • Learning Expectations vs Behavorial Expectations
  • There is an interaction between the learning environments along with how faculty interact with one another. There are a variety of expectations on the student side and faculty perspective.
  • Expectations in the syllabus are key. E.g. Technical Skills Required, Technology, Technical Assistance
  • Communicating expectations to get everyone on the same page: Written Communication (syllabus) | Modeling (classroom procedures, discussions in class and online)| Learning Design (activities, feedback, course structure, session routines)
  • Best practices for communicating expections include: 1) before the first day, 2) on the first day, 3) first week, and + 4) throughout the semester as reminders.

  • Piazza wiki was recommended as a way to create a persistent FAQ for a course.
  • Course Design for First Week is Important – Recommendations include setting up expectations via orientation > syllabus (syllabus quiz), beginning of the semester todo checklist, sharing requirements for communications/disccussion board frequency and use/office hours/appointments, ensuring delivering where to go for help (class “citizenship” behaviors), time commitment, additional resources such as LMS help, Dropbox, Open Document, etc.

Session 2 – Technology Test Kitchen

New this year! We are introducing the Technology Test Kitchen, which is an area where conference attendees will be able to have hands on experiences with different hardware and software. We will have different ‘Master Chefs’ guiding the experience and sharing how they use the technology but it is meant to be experimental and free form, a kind of maker space for educational technologies!

Apps in the test kitchen included: Evernote (note taking), Slack (group messaging), mindmeister (mind mapping), educreations (interactive whiteboard), photomath (scan to solve problems), animoto (in class games), Kahoot (in class quizzes  and games), and duolingo (language learning).

Session 3 – Scaffolding Learning with Technology

Scaffolding learning presents opportunities to increase student engagement with the subject matter and introduces alternate learning strategies. Scaffolding technology into a well-designed instructional strategy not only serves to engage students, but also to provide students with practice in honing their own higher order thinking skills. This presentation introduces several teaching strategies in which scaffolding technology becomes a critical component in the learning process. 


Greg Allar – Gregory Allar is a Special Lecturer in the International Studies Program at Oakland University. He is also a Research Associate at the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Examples were presented as to how technology was used in classes:

  • Peer Evaluation via Google Doc – Providing students with the ability to easily collaborate on writing documents and sharing feedback.
  • Thinglink – Using to delivery media-rich activities and course content.
  • Youtube – Access to a world of ed content.

Session 4: Gaming the System: Innovative Pedagogical Design

Creating engaging faculty professional development is always challenging. Kellogg Community College re-designed a required Instructional Design course for faculty using gameful learning principles to motivate and engage faculty in innovative professional development.

Tammy Douglas –  Tammy Douglas is Director of Learning Technologies at Kellogg Community College, where she oversees distance education and chairs the Online Course Development Committee.


  • It all started with this faculty contract… faculty are required to take: 1) online teaching and learning and 2) instructional design class.
  • Design by committee… outline of topics, basic information, disconnected subject matter, committee disengaged.
  • Culture eats strategy for breakfast lunch, and dinner… the best plans don’t get executed if its not supported.
  • Talk to faculty about what is needed in the classroom, eg. classroom management, learning objectives, assessments, etc.
  • The ID basics: 1) Use of technologies – many faculty are feeling behind at the college, 2) Integration into andragogy, 3) Engagement, 4) Alignment, 5) Assessment, and 6) Administrative focus on success
  • College Focus on Student Success reviews: grades, evaluations, retention, comparative analytics (section level)
  • Redesign > Model the technologies, teach the unwanted content, bite sized pieces, reveal the mysteries of the design process, provide the tools and support.
  • Gameful learning, ed psychology, motivational theories, engagement techniques are key.
  • Educating Players:  Are Games the Future of Education?
  • Games provide models for increasing student success, ideally allowing students to: deeply engage with subject matter, work hard and embrace challenges, take risks; try new things, be resilient in the event of failure. – Fishman, B (November 2016)
  • Game principles: clear learning goals, intrinsic/extrinsic, autonomy, belonging, competence, less risk of failure, exploration, identity play, practice and reinforcement, embedded assessment
  • ID course is delivered in campus LMS, includes the basics but also student profiles – to check assumptions about students in the roster.
  • The Instructional Design Basics class is delivered as a hybrid with a variety of levels.

Lunch and Keynote – Are You Gameful? Understanding (and Improving) Student Academic Engagement

The first step in any learning endeavor is engagement. If your students are not engaged, learning is not possible. Gameful Learning is a practical pedagogical approach that you can use to enhance learner engagement. Being gameful means leveraging our best knowledge about student motivation, and is closely tied to cutting edge ideas such as personalized learning, outcomes-based and standards-based learning, and digital credentials. This talk introduces core concepts for making education more gameful, and a tool called GradeCraft designed to support gameful teaching.


Barry Fishman – Barry Fishman is Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of Learning Technologies in the University of Michigan School of Information and School of Education.  @barryfishman @gradecraft


  • It’s not about the technology it’s about the what and the why.

“Most ideas about eacahing are not new, but not everyone know the old ideas.” – Euclid, c. 300 B.C.E

  • The key challenge about what we do as educators is touch and commitment, and focus and support – as it’s difficult!
  • It’s not about the games for learning (eg. brainpop.com), gamification of learning (classdojo – gaming techniques for the classroom,), ludic learning (take an environment and make it a big game “classcraft”), “gameful learning” is the focus of the keynote.
  • Gameful Learning 
  • Challenge we face: deeply engaged, take challenges, risks, resilient… BUT school is a game but it’s a “terrible” game.
  • Well-designed games: engage players early and keep them, appeal to curiousity, encourage to take risks… people play well-designed games because they are challenging.
  • Can we develop an environment that promotes engaging challenges?
  • 10 game principles: clear learning goals, intrinsic/extrinsic, autonomy, belonging, competence, less risk of failure, exploration, identity play, practice and reinforcement, embedded assessment

  • Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation – What pushes or pulls individuals to start, sustain, and finally complete activities > focuses attention. Extrinsic rooted in rewards, intrinsic in about emotion/feelings.
  • Support Automony – Keep on learning and loving it… wants to enhance career… it’s best to have motivation based on autonomous because when external variables are removed.

  • Major theories: goal theory, attribution theory, mindset or grit (descriptive theories), self-determination theory (design theory)
  • Goal theory (Paul Pintrich) – mastery or performance as a goal with mastery being preferred. Performance avoid because you want to avoid being viewed as incompetent…
  • Attribution theory – 
  • Ability or Effort – (Carol Dweck) fixed mindset or entity learners vs growth mindset or incremental learners… if you work hard at it you will get better at it!
  • Help students to believe that they can do well. “If you work hard you can do better!”
  • Self-determination theory – automony, belonging, competence… when these are position in a positive way intrinsic motivation is fostered. When they’re elements are present in a negative way, extrinsic motivation is required.

Belonging – desire to interact with, be connected to, and expiring caring for/by others, is about developing secure and satisfying connections in ones social surroundings, we need to experience a sense of belonging and attachment.

Competence – understanding how you can active/attain the outcomes you desire, you have control, being able to perform the actions necessary.

Take Aways

  • Introduction to GradeCraft [Video]

Session 5 – How Do We Promote and Sustain Student Engagement?

Participants in this session will explore the process of creating a comprehensive student engagement plan that can be applied in online education including asynchronous, hybrid and face-to-face classrooms. Participants will learn how to start and sustain student engagement throughout the course. Various technological tools and pedagogical methods will be used to enhance the participant’s mastery of promoting and fostering engaged learning environment.


Narine Mirijanian – Director for Business and Health Service programs at Baker College Online

Caryl Walling – Director of Faculty Development at Baker College Online & Center for Graduate Studies in Flint, Michigan


What does student engagement mean to you?

Pedagogical Approach

  • Engages students in the learning process
  • Includes skill instruction
  • Encourages students to reflect on what they are learning and what they already know
  • Motivates students to take ownership of own learning experience 
  • Promotes student interactions and teamwork

How to Start and Sustain Student Engagement

  • First Day – Introductions
  • Weeks – Post welcome and summary for each modules, weekly strategies, keep it going, week summary
  • End of Course – Ask students to post summary
  • Last Day

Student Engagement

  • Beyond traditional discussion board questions: probing questions, compare theories and understanding, analyzing new information, applying knowledge, leverage technology to promote engagement, encouraging student leadership, engaging the indivual learner. “Students take ownership of their own learning.”