This is a guest post by Alissa Harrington, VoiceThreader and Instructional Designer at Stevenson University.
VoiceThread is so flexible and simple to use, that we often overlook some of its powerful built-in features. Below are three ideas to incorporate into your VoiceThread experience:
1. Insert an Active Link– An easy way to share a file* or website with students during a VoiceThread presentation is to copy the source URL and paste the link in a text comment. Links in the comment area are live once posted. Alternatively, you can also post an active link in the title of a slide, however only one link can be shared per slide using this method. No matter which method you choose, be sure to introduce the URL with a video or voice comment so the students are aware of its purpose.
*Note: To share a file, place the item in Google Drive or Dropbox first and then select share to generate a URL for the file.
2. Create Assessments Using Comment Moderation– Comment moderation “hides” comments from all users except the creator of the VoiceThread. This option is useful for assessment prompts as it forces students to create original and creative responses. To enable this feature, select Publishing Options from the Edit page of your VoiceThread and then select the ‘Moderate Comments?’ option. Moderated comments will appear grayed out with a closed-curtain icon. Once all grading is complete, instructors can click the closed-curtain icon to reveal each comment to the class.
3. Organize Conversations with Tags– Tags are an optional, yet powerful item; they allow you to conduct a search based upon keywords. The tag field appears in the ‘Describe your VoiceThread’ dialog box under the title and description fields. Use tags to associate your VoiceThreads with categories, research topics, or presentation types, such as debates. Once you assign tags you can quickly filter related conversations by entering a keyword into the search field located on the MyVoice tab.
About Alissa Harrington
A former elementary school teacher turned techie; Alissa is recognized for her ability to teach complex technology concepts to the non-technical. Technology and education have been her passion for nearly 20 years. Alissa is currently an instructional designer for Graduate and Professional Studies at Stevenson University. Follow her on twitter at: @aj_harrington