Monday, April 18, 2011

Tip of the Week: Edistorm

Web 2.0 Tools Edistorm

When groups collaborate on projects, they sometimes use brainstorming to gather ideas. This can take place when everyone is in the same room, but that is not always possible. For collaborating with people in various locations, Edistorm allows multiple people to generate ideas, to group ideas, and to vote simultaneously.

Features of the basic (free) account:
• Participate in storms
• Create solo storms (private to the user)
• Create public storms (open to all Edistorm users)
• Unlimited invites to others for collaboration
• For the first 30 days, can create private storms (sessions offered by invite only)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Web 2.0 Tool of the Week: Second Life

Second Life is a 3-D virtual world entirely built and owned by its Residents. Since opening to the public in 2003, it has grown explosively and today is used by universities, businesses and individuals from around the globe.

An Invitation to See Second Life in Action
On April 12-13, TWU will host the Annual Student Creative Arts and Research Symposium. TWU uses Second Life during the symposium to allow students to present a virtual poster from off campus. As in real-life, presenters attend one session of the symposium by logging into Second Life from a computer and having their avatar present during a session. Students present their research to a global audience in addition to the visitors on the TWU campus.
A real-life viewing of Second Life will be available in ACT 225 and is open to the public. Student research will be presented at the following times in world:

Tuesday, April 12
12:00-12:50 p.m.
6-7:20 p.m.

Wednesday April 13
9-10:20 a.m.
12:15-1:00 p.m.
6-7:20 p.m.

In addition to a guided tour in ACT 225, visitors are welcome to try Second Life hands on in ACT 603 or from the convenience of your home. We invite you to join us in this celebration of student research!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Tip of the Week: Sharing Documents in SharePoint

Application: SharePoint
Documents can be shared through SharePoint so that multiple people can have access and share editing responsibilities. SharePoint also offers the option to keep track of versions so that changes can be tracked.

Using SharePoint check out/in for documents
• Only one person can edit a document at a time
• Useful for groups of people working on the same document
• When the document is checked out, others can open a read-only copy

Using SharePoint versioning for documents
• Tracks changes on documents
• Previous versions can be viewed or restored as a part of the current version
• Versions can be tracked with the name of each person that has checked out/in the document and comments about changes.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Tip of the Week: My Links

Application: SharePoint
SharePoint has its own bookmarking option to allow for direct navigation to frequently used sites. Both SharePoint and other internet sites can be bookmarked. This list of links or bookmarks can be accessed anywhere through SharePoint.

How to add a link or bookmark in SharePoint
1. Go to (From on campus)
2. Navigate to a specific page. For example, click on Instructional Support Services, then select Denton, then select Training.
3. In the upper right corner of the page, click on My Links.
4. Select Add to My Links.
5. A dialog box appears. Make any optional changes needed such as the name of the link, who can view the links, which group to add the link to or create a new group of links.
6. Click OK.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Application: SharePoint

Surveys are a method of gathering information from individuals in a standardized way. Surveys can be used to gather feedback, evaluate, or to determine trends in a group. SharePoint offers a survey tool for TWU faculty, staff and students.

What does a SharePoint survey offer?
• Branching logic: depending on how a respondent answers, certain questions may or may not appear
• Many question types:
o Multiple choice
o Multiple answers
o Open response
o Rating/Likert scale
• Option to export data to Microsoft Excel
• Restrict number of responses per respondent
• User must be logged in to SharePoint (with portal login), so data is collected only from TWU population.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Tip of the Week: Using My Site in SharePoint

Application: SharePoint

Each TWU faculty and staff has a My Site space in SharePoint. This is an internal website that can be used to store documents, keep a calendar, project tasks and more. SharePoint is available from on or off campus, making it a flexible way to store and manage information. There are two parts of My Site: My Home and My Profile.

Using My Home in SharePoint
• Personal place to store documents, calendars, surveys, tasks, and lists
• Permissions can be set by item to determine who can view or edit
• Many items can be linked to your Outlook account to view and edit through Outlook
Using My Profile in SharePoint
• Professional public profile page
• Fields to offer information about professional affiliations, skills, contact info, reporting hierarchy
• Option to display a picture

Monday, February 14, 2011

Tip of the Week: Public Folders

Applications: Microsoft Outlook

Public folders are special Outlook accounts that allow a group of people to share email. Public folders can have subfolders as well, for various departmental or project needs.

How are TWU offices using Public Folders?
Departmental email point of contact

Many TWU departments have email enabled public folders so that their department has a generic department point of contact, such as These account names can be used in department literature so that several departmental people can process incoming requests.
Departmental central voicemail & fax
Many TWU departments use a public folder for their main line voicemail messages as well as faxes. This can be a time and cost savings to the department.