Faculty Governance Updates, August 2012

By Rob McCaffrey

College Calendar

We now have a new events calendar with increased functionality, which will allow you  to sign up to receive updates from specific events, or filter events by categories such as faculty events, international events, or arts events. In addition, this calendar is compatible with Valencia’s app so you can receive event feeds on your mobile device.

Read a full description of what the new calendar can do by clicking here, and get answers to frequently asked questions from the calendar help page.

4 Ways to get to the Valencia Events Calendar:

  • Type the URL into the address bar: valenciacollege.edu/events
  • To the right of Upcoming Events at the bottom right corner of the valenciacollege.edu homepage, click “view all”
  • Select “Valencia Events” from the Quick Links drop down menu on all pages of valenciacollege.edu
  • Select “Valencia Events” under the title “Where” in the global footer on all pages of valenciacollege.edu

Call for Faculty

Calendar and Scheduling Committee
The Calendar and Scheduling Committee needs two faculty members to replace outgoing members. There are usually one or two meetings per year. You can see a brief history of the committee work here. Contact me at rmccaffrey@valenciacollege.edu if you are interested.

HB 7135: General Education Curriculum
The Valencia Planning and Communication Committee (via Karen Borglum and Falecia Williams) sent out a form for you to nominate full-time faculty members (including yourself) to the state-level general education committees working on HB 7135, the law requiring changes to Florida’s general education curriculum. The nominations must be received by noon on September 7, 2012. If selected, the nominees will be expected to participate in the state meetings and share information with Valencia’s Planning and Communications Committee.

Web Portal Redesign
Valencia’s Web Portal team, which looks at the experiences students and employees have with the .edu site and the Atlas website, are looking for faculty members to help gather feedback ahead of a potential redesign of the portal. Contact me at rmccaffrey@valenciacollege.edu if you are interested.

Change of Grade Form

Have you ever needed to submit a stack of change-of-grade paper forms at the end of the semester? Well, no more. Later this fall, you’ll see a new link in your Atlas account for an electronic version of the form. The link will be in the same area as Mid-Term and Final Grades. You’ll see a drop-down menu for the previous two semesters, classes taught in those semesters, and currently assigned grades for students. If you are listed as the primary instructor, you will be able to submit the changes and reasons via the online web form.

Changes beyond two semesters and changes to a grade of “W” will still require a paper form and the dean’s or campus president’s signature.

The Valencia App

The Mobile Advisory Group met on August 22, 2012 to review feedback on Valencia’s mobile application for iPhone and Android devices. Here’s a quick summary.

Approximately 10,000 downloads of the app are complete. Multiple comments have been posted through the iTunes and Google Play stores, approximately seven of which were negative. The main complaint was that the app would sometimes refuse to download on certain Android tablet devices.

The chief request from students was for access to Atlas email and/or Blackboard. Minor complaints about the speed of the app were also noted. OIT will create a FAQ to help users troubleshoot speed issues.

An app for Blackboard Learn already exists; however, it doesn’t work on all phones. The group discussed options for a link in the app that would connect students to courses regardless of what learning management system Valencia uses.

Among some of the current functions being added are Atlas Announcements. OIT is establishing a connection with the app and our new events calendar system, which will allow  event feeds to be received on cell phones.

Other possible additions include a link to training and listing of existing app technologies like Soapboxbackchannel, clicker apps or QR code scanners. The group also discussed the possibility of adding indoor map functionality, but will first discuss this with security and other stakeholders before proceeding.

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