BbWorld 2007 Annual Conference
Boston, MA

Presentations by: Dr. Rhonda Blackburn and Mr. Chris Bigenho



Web 2.0 Educational Benefits and Blackboard Academic Suite



Hands-on workshop:

Description: Our world is full of tools that allow us to connect and collaborate. With social software tools, students are rapidly adopting a life of connecting and sharing information and content in ways never before possible. Blogs, Wikis, Podcasts, RSS, social bookmarking, and collaborative note-taking are all examples of tools that educators can leverage to shape and improve learning environments. How can we integrate them into Blackboard? What are the best practices when incorporating this into your curriculum? This workshop will provide give you the knowledge you need to develop and manipulate the tools of the “digital native” within your Blackboard environment.

Presentation Materials:

All online resources are bookmarked at Search with the terms bbworld07 AND either bigenho or blackburn.


Increasing Student Engagement and Collaboration Through Implementation of Social Software



Concurrent Session :

Description: In order for students to learn, they must be engaged with their courses. There are many ways to accomplish this: wikis, discussions, social bookmarking and group activities are just a few. Blackboard software and other social software enhance engagement and collaboration in your courses. This session looks at many possibilities to engage your students.

Presentation Materials:

All online resources are bookmarked at Search with the terms bbworld07 AND either bigenho or blackburn.


Blog Resources

Blogging Tools

  • Blogger: Free blog engine with no download required
  • Bloglines: Free blog engine. Also has RSS feed aggregator capabilities.
  • Edublogs: Free blogs for teachers. Run by Wiki Spaces
  • Live Journal: Free-Blog, Private Journal and Social Network
  • Movable Type: Powerful blogging software for purchase. Very flexible.



Podcasting Resources

How to:


  • Audacity: Free audio editing software. This is great for preparing your files for posting on the web.

Podcast From Phone

Sample Podcasts and Blogs



Wiki Resources

Wiki Tools

  • Workshop Wiki "Sandbox-PHP": Feel free to play in the sandbox. Test out PHP Wiki with very simple coding. Check the bottom of the wiki for tips on editing wiki and to view key to simple coding language.
  • Workshop Wiki "Sandbox-GUI": Feel free to play in the sandbox. This wiki uses a familiar interface that looks a lot like MS Word.
  • Wiki Spaces: Free and powerful wiki using WYSIWYG technology. You also have space for threaded discussions, notification (subscription) password protection and history.
  • Seed Wiki: Free WYSIWYG wiki. Similar to Wiki Spaces but not as many bells and whistles.
  • PBWiki: Free and as they say, as easy as making a PB and J sandwich.

RSS Resources

How to:

RSS Feed Learning Object: This learning object was created to instruct about RSS feeds and how to create one in the WebCT 4.X environment. You can follow these same instructions for CE 6 and Vista 4 but place the copied code in the header of any folder.

JAVA Script Writers: These programs will write about 10 lines of code that you can copy and paste into any html page or text box in WebCT. You can find additional JAVA writers in search engines using the search term "feed2js".

Aggregators: These are programs and web resources you can use to subscribe to a feed.

Other Resources

  • Feedster: This is a search engine for RSS feeds
  • Sample Feeds: These feeds were constructed using a simple html editor and an automatic JAVA script writer- Feed2JS.

Other Internet Tools


Social Book Marking Free social bookmarking tool that anyone can use. Tag your bookmarks, search other tags and users bookmarks. A fantastic tool. This is the free Blackboard social bookmarking tool. You can find other links for this presentation simply by visiting and searching by the tags bbworld07 and bigenho or blackburn.

Social Note Taking: This is a new class of social software that has not reached mainstream yet. However, there is tremendous potential here.

Google Notebook: This is a free social notebook from Google.




Additional Reading

Marc Prensky

Research Papers and Internet Usage Trends

Learning in the Digital Age

Suggested Books

  • Collins, J. (2001). Good to Great
  • Pink, D (2005). A Whole New Mind
  • Weinbergerskip to next title, D. (2001). The Cluetrain Manifesto
  • Wink, J. and Putney, L. (2002). A Vision of Vygotsky
  • Wiske, M. (1998). Teaching for Understanding
  • Meier, D. (2002). The Power of their Ideas
  • Bransford, J. (2000). How People Learn
  • Papert, S. (1993). The Children's Machine
  • Barabasi, A. (2003). Linked
  • Weinberger, D. (2002). Small Pieces Loosely Joined
  • Gardner, H. (2000). The Disciplined Mind