Educational Technology Projects

Roanoke College is dedicated to providing the best Educational Technology for its students. The College's faculty work in partnership with the IT staff to discuss, test and implement technology projects to improve the classroom experience. Some of these projects are currently in the pilot stage and are undergoing testing by a few volunteers before being implemented across campus.

Liebman Technology Innovation Projects

A generous donation from Leon Liebman supports these projects, which foster new developments in educational technology.

3-D Scanning - Frances Bosch (Teaching Associate, Biology); DorothyBelle Poli (Associate Professor, Biology); Megan Blackwell '19; Bronson Boone '18; Michael Kluge (IT)

The acquisition of a NextEngine 3D scanner has enabled the biology department to leap-frog on the CAD learning curve, allowing them to create curved objects, with greater detail, and objects created from preserved specimens or sculpted models. Some of the initial projects include fossils from Dr. DorothyBelle Poli's collection and converting CT scan files into files that are compatible and ready to 3D print.

Camtasia - Skip Brenzovich (Assistant Professor, Chemistry); Matt Fleenor (Associate Professor, Physics); Gary Hollis (Professor, Chemistry); Steven Hughes (Assistant Professor, Chemistry); Dar Jorgensen (Thornhill Professor, Biology); Austin Giles '16; Amber Isham '16; David Mulford (IT)

The screencasting and video editing software, Camtasia, allows for the relatively easy creation of instructional videos used for demonstration and education purposes.  At Roanoke College, some faculty members are utilizing Camtasia to "flip" their classroom and provide additional instructional materials for students to consume outside of the classroom in preparation for in-class activities. The TV Studio has used Camtasia to create videos demonstrating frequently asked about computer tasks for the campus community. View a few of the videos created by the TV Studio here:

Video Creation and Storytelling - Pamela Serota Cote (Director of International Education); Elsa Wieboldt '15; David Mulford (IT)

The College now has a supportable, easy-to-use software tool for creating videos. It is called WeVideo and is being used by students, faculty and staff. Over the past year, Dr. Serota Cote has coordinated faculty workshops for those who would like to incorporate video creation and storytelling into the classroom; IT staff assists by providing training, consulting and support for the campus community. Whitney Leeson and Ivonne Wallace-Fuentes are introducing storytelling in the History department. Paul Hanstedt (English) and Julie Maina (Health and Human Performance) have brought video-based projects into their courses. The software is also used as a tool by students while they are traveling internationally to capture their impressions, learning and personal growth.

Virginia Fish Geographic Information System (GIS) Project - Steve Powers (Associate Professor, Biology); Katelyn Bockwoldt '16; Michael Santoroski (IT)

The purpose of this ambitious digitization project is to make the extensive Roanoke College Ichthyology Collection available for GIS analysis in a searchable electronic format. The collection comprises fifty years' worth of fieldwork in the form of 130,000 fish specimens from 475 different species in jars with their associated geographical and temporal data. The majority of the specimens were collected under the supervision of Bob Jenkins, author of Freshwater Fishes of Virginia, and the collection is currently being managed by Steve Powers. Kate Bockwoldt has been digitally cataloging the specimens from Fall 2013 through Spring 2015, and she and Dr. Powers will collaborate with Michael Santoroski over the next academic year to develop an interactive web interface that will make this database accessible to researchers all over the world.

Qualitative Analysis Software - Denise Friedman (Associate Professor and Chairperson, Psychology); Lindsey Osterman (Assistant Professor, Psychology); Carolyn Powell '15, Jessica Gladfelter '15, and Sabrina McAllister '18; Jacob Jackson (IT)

As of Fall 2014, qualitative analysis software is available to Roanoke College students. Now students can learn about qualitative data coding and analysis, which involves turning written narratives into data that can be statistically analyzed. With the use of this new software, the psychology department launched a classroom project to enable students to measure how short breaks from technology affect them. The College has provided quantitative analysis software for several years and many students typically receive exceptionally rigorous training. Given that many jobs require practical knowledge of qualitative methods, e.g., assessing program effectiveness or employee satisfaction, our students will now have an opportunity for training in handling qualitative data. Currently, we are using NVivo, a flexible and easy-to-learn software package that helps in the coding and analysis of narratives, such as course reflection papers and verbal descriptions of events and experiences.

3-D Printing - Frances Bosch (Teaching Associate, Biology); Leslie Warden (Assistant Professor, Fine Arts); Brian Kluge '15; Michael Kluge (IT)

After surveying faculty from many departments and carefully researching the options, Professor Bosch and Michael Kluge selected the MakerBot Replicator 2X as the 3-D printer that best suits the College's needs. This innovative technology literally adds a new dimension to the study of natural and man-made artifacts. Through 3-D printing, items transcend the surfaces of page and screen to become physical objects students can turn over in their hands and examine from all angles. This sophisticated technology can simulate the complex shapes and varied textures of organic and inorganic forms, and it will be useful across a variety of disciplines; the possibilities range from structural models of molecules to replicas of bones or archeological relics such as clay pottery or stone tools.

Makerbot 3D Printer 2x                                                           

"When students are able to touch a molecule and examine it in a 3-D manner, often the physical interactions are made simple. Ideas become real!" - DorothyBelle Poli (Associate Professor, Biology)

Other Technology Innovation Projects:

Apple Classroom - Dar Jorgensen (Thornhill Professor, Biology); David Mulford and Michael Kluge (IT)

Apple classroom increases mobility within classrooms and labs. Professors use an iPad to show presentations and pictures while they walk around the classroom, assisting students during experiments and projects by bringing up helpful information and websites as needed.

Flipping the Classroom - Jan Minton (Teaching Associate, Math/Computer Science/Physics); David Mulford (IT) 

In a flipped classroom, professors record videos on various topics and students watch them before class, so class time can be used for discussion and active, hands-on learning.

ArcGIS server - Katherine O'Neill (Assistant Professor, Environmental Studies); Michael Kluge and Randy Stubstad (IT) 

The ArcGIS server supports GIS usage with a fast, reliable and accessible environment. Students can access ArcGIS from specialized labs and through the Internet.

Television and Video Editing Studio - David Mulford

The Roanoke College TV Production Studio, located on the lower level of Fintel Library, is a new multidisciplinary resource for live streaming, recording and editing video productions. The studio is outfitted with two cutting-edge HD video cameras, green screen and teleprompter, as well as professional sound, lighting and editing equipment.

Wordpress Services for Faculty - Michael Santoroski

Roanoke College provides academic departments and faculty with Wordpress blogs that publicly showcase projects, research, scholarship and travel experiences.