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Web 2.0


An estimated 11 percent of undergraduate students on campuses today have a disability. Ensuring that these students have equal access to technology is a complex challenge, requiring a coordinated effort across campus departments. Universities must maintain compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 AA, which is considered the standard for measuring web accessibility.

John Fragola (left) and Peter Grady use iPads to monitor the heat inside Dana English Hall on the Mount Carmel campus at Quinnipiac University. Both are licensed HVAC mechanics in the facilities department.

Members of the facilities crew at Quinnipiac University were spending a lot of time traveling back to their shop during the workday.

This situation, of course, was not unique to Quinnipiac, but department officials at the school set out to eliminate the trips workers had to make to retrieve new work orders, find information about equipment in manuals or look up floor plans. The central Connecticut institution has a 212-acre main campus, and two branches that are a half-mile and about five miles away.

“Generation C” is demanding video in all aspects of their lives, including in their learning experiences. Universities ought to harness the power of academic video not only to meet these expectations, but to realize the power of lecture capture, personalized education, and flipped classrooms. In this web seminar hosted by Sonic Foundry vice president Sean Brown and originally presented on August 20, 2013, JD Solomon of University Business presented some findings from a new white paper about how academic video is at a tipping point and what its future looks like.

When you think about what makes a university distinctive, what kind of qualities comes to mind? Is it their beautiful campus, or maybe their dedicated faculty? So many institutions share these fine qualities that they’re hardly difference-makers that will prompt prospective students to the decision point.

College marketers, therefore, face the challenge of identifying and effectively communicating their exceptional assets – and culling input from across the board is the best way to do this, but it’s not always easy to facilitate.

It’s hard to follow higher education news these days without seeing a reference to MOOCs. The online learning platforms from edX, Coursera, Udacity, and others were launched to great fanfare over the last two years. Proponents praise them for their potential to change education, while critics chalk them up as more hype than hope.

Have you noticed how nearly everybody has been weighing in on whether or not higher ed should embrace responsive websites? Web developers and designers working in universities, of course, but also marketers, communicators, and college magazine editors have debated, at conferences or on Twitter, the pros and cons of the responsive web design approach.

As I noted in my previous column on the digital web in higher ed, digital analytics is bound to play an increasing role this year. Whether they call it big data, business intelligence, or analytics, many decision-makers on campus have been converted to the power of the data-driven approach. Make a difference with web analytics at your institution by taking these three steps.

Protecting any enterprise from security threats can be a daunting endeavor, but few organizational structures are more difficult to secure than a college or university. Students, faculty, administrators and alumni—each group has differing IT needs, creating not just one, but many unique security challenges.

Technology has enabled higher education to extend instruction outside of the traditional classroom. New lecture capture technology such as the McGraw-Hill Tegrity Mobile App allows professors and students to record information on-the-go. In this web seminar, originally broadcast on October 18, 2012, instructors from Laramie County (Wyo.) Community College demonstrated how they use the app to enhance their lab, online, and hybrid classes in the Geosciences department.

A college reunion this spring at the  State University of New York at Oswego presented the web-development team an opportunity to build an iPhone app using an open-source software called Kurogo, developed by Modo Labs. The app was a hit, with 30 percent of the 2,000 or so reunion attendees downloading it to share photos and stay on top of events over the course of three days.