OLT NewsletterOLT Newsletter

Issue 1, February 2017

The Office of Learning and Teaching distributes a newsletter highlighting recent activities, upcoming PD sessions and updates on current projects.

The topics in this issue are as follows:

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Your TutorThe University is continuing its pilot of the on demand online tutoring service provided by ‘YourTutor’.  The pilot went well over the Summer Semester and as a result the service will be extended to students in all 100 level units for Semester 1 2017.

‘YourTutor’ supports students by matching them with personalised, live, online help using real-time chat and an interactive whiteboard. All help provided is strictly academic literacy, numeracy, core concepts, and bridging support. This means all student enquiries related to unit-specific content will be always referred to you, their lecturer.

The service is linked from the Learnline unit for ease of access which also removes the need for students to set up a separate account. ‘Your Tutor’  support is available from 3pm – midnight (CST) Sunday – Friday making it very accessible for our student demographic and complementary to our internal support systems.

‘YourTutor’ provides on demand tutorial support for students across several subject areas (listed below) and Academic Foundations. 

Academic Foundations

English Skills: Grammar, spelling, punctuation, ESL support.
Maths: General, intermediate, specialise/extension, statistics.
Writing: Essays, reports, creative writing, speeches.
Research: Assignment and project research.
Library skills: Database research, online search skills.
Study skills: Time management, note taking, revision.
Science: General science, biology, physics, chemistry. 

Subject Areas



Blackboard Collaborate UltraBlackboard ‘Collaborate Ultra’ is the new release of Collaborate which is progressively being released to clients globally. The initial trial at CDU (in Summer Semester 2016) has been very positive and this will be broadened Semester 1 2017.

If you are interested in trialling Collaborate Ultra during Semester 1 2017 please email Learnline Staff Support at learnlinestaff@cdu.edu.au. A range of support is available for those who wish to participate including:

Initial training for academics using the tool

Collaborate Ultra Resources Wiki which includes:

  • Collaborate Ultra Development Page which contains a ‘Development cycle Updates’ section with the implemented updates applied, Known Issues Register and Enhancement Requests logged with Blackboard.

Please call Learnline Staff Support on (08) 8946 6198 if you would like a preview of Collaborate Ultra.

RespondusIn some instances, you may be interested in securing the online test environment to monitor student assessment. Respondus LockDown Browser is a custom web browser that locks down the online testing environment within Learnline. Once enabled for an online test, students are unable to print, copy, go to other websites, access other applications or close the test until it is submitted for grading.

Respondus Monitor can be used in conjunction with LockDown Browser to record students during the online test via a web camera. With this enabled, a student is required to use a web camera and microphone to sit the test. After the test is complete you can review details of the assessment and recorded videos of the test.

If you would like to find out more or if you are interested in adopting these tools in your teaching, please contact Bill Searle, Manager Learning Technologies e:bill.searle@cdu.edu.au

Analytics for LearnThe Analytics for Learn platform was upgraded in December 2016. The upgrade brings CDU onto the latest release of Blackboard Analytics for Learn. The release includes newly styled and formatted reports in Blackboard Learn that incorporate Blackboard’s new design language, improvements to reporting performance and several new reports.

In preparation for Semester 1 remember to check out the Student Snapshot Report which highlights student, unit and course attributes that can help in getting to know your class. It provides four demographics summarised in graphical form: the percentage of course completion minimum, maximum and mean GPA, and a table view summary of students in your class.

You can access the report from the Unit Management Control Panel. Select Evaluation, Unit Analytics and click the link to Student Snapshot.

OTT@CDU February 2017There is still time for new HE Academic staff to register for the Orientation to Tertiary Teaching at CDU (OTT@CDU) program.

The program will be held at Casuarina campus over two and a half days from 15-17th February 2017.

"Thank you so much for this orientation, I couldn't have wished for a better start at CDU – it provides me with a solid foundation and will increase my effectiveness and performance." (A past attendee)

Register NOW on the OLT website at  http://www.cdu.edu.au/olt/pd/pdevents/ttorientation.html

VETQMS ReviewA comprehensive review of the VETQMSv3 including associated documents was started in December 2016 with members of the VET Faculty and OLT working collaboratively. The VETQMS was originally launched in 2012 and is regularly updated. 

This review is initiated as part of the VETQMS continuous improvement cycle and includes consideration of:

  • Feedback from consultation with stakeholders
  • Changes in the CDU context and environment
  • Alignment to the VET Plan 2017-2019, Connecting students, industry and skills.
  • ASQA’s new audit model.

Gary OverlieseGary Overliese has joined the OLT team as Manager, Learnline Development and Training. Gary comes to us from the Gold Coast, Queensland and brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge in the education industry.

He has worked in both the VET and Higher Education sectors. From the ground up as a student, completing his Bachelor of Multimedia at Bond University while tutoring at Bond to teaching a range of Diplomas at TAFE Queensland Gold Coast such as the Diploma of Screen and Media, Diploma of Interactive Digital Media and the Diploma of Graphic Design.

More recently he was working for Bond University as the eLearning Applications Administrator where he gained valuable experience in working within the Blackboard ecosystem as well as working on new and emerging eLearning technologies.

Outside of work, Gary enjoys playing wheelchair basketball, web programming, 3D animation, movies and drinking copious amounts of coffee.

2017 Allocation of Higher Education Developers to SchoolsThe Higher Education and Training Developers in OLT assist schools, learning and teaching committees and individual staff members with a range of support to enhance learning and teaching at CDU. This work includes support for

  • curriculum development and accreditation,
  • learning and teaching related Professional Development through a variety of face-to-face and online programs,
  • learning design at the unit and course levels,
  • assistance with development of teaching focused awards and grants, and
  • learning and teaching focused projects.

The Education Developers will be working with the following schools in 2017:

Alison Reedy:

  • School of Law;
  • School of Health;
  • School of Indigenous Knowledge and Public Policy;
  • Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education

Bopelo Boitshwarelo:

  • CDU Business School;
  • School of Environment;
  • School of Engineering and IT

Trevor Billany:

  • School of Creative Arts and Humanities;
  • School of Psychological and Clinical Sciences;
  • Menzies;
  • Northern Institute

Stefan Popenici:

  • School of Education;
  • School of Academic Language and Learning

To contact the educational developer for YOUR school, go to the OLT website.

ShareStreamThe use of ShareStream has continued to grow during 2016 with general availability in all Learnline units from Summer Semester.  ShareStream has been used to host and support streaming of video and audio in Learnline unit sites, integrate licensed video resources across multiple Learnline sites and leveraged to support video assessment and submissions by students.

ShareStream will replace Trogon as the repository for the storage of video and audio files utilised within Learnline.  Access to the Trogon webserver as the storage and delivery platform for video and audio files will be gradually phased out. Details on the process will be circulated in the near future.

In light of this change, all new audio and video files for Semester 1 2017 should be stored within ShareStream.

To get further information, or access, to explore the capabilities of ShareStream see the  ShareStream Resource Hub.

Please contact Staff Support via learnlinestaff@cdu.edu.au  or via Ext 6198 during office hours for further information.

HE Accreditation Stage 2 Submission Deadlines

  • 14th April 2017 (all submissions for 2017 must be received by ART by this date)

Upcoming University Learning and Teaching Committee Meetings

  • 21 February
  • 21 March

Previous Issues

Issue & Key Topic PDF File Word file

Issue 4 December 2016
Leatning & Teaching Week 2016

webpage link

Issue 3 August 2016
Leatning & Teaching Week 2016

webpage link

Issue 2 May 2016
Vice Chancellor's Awards

webpage link
Issue 1 February 2016
Teaching spaces training
webpage link
Issue 4 November 2015
Learning and Teaching Week review
webpage link
Issue 3 September 2015
Learning and Teaching Week
webpage link
Issue 2 May 2015
webpage link
Issue 1 February 2015
Blackboard Analytics for Learn
webpage link
Issue 3 December 2014
Director's note
webpage link
Issue 2 July 2014
Learning & Teaching Week - program and call for presentations
webpage link
Issue 1 April 2014
Innovation@CDU Showcase
webpage link
Issue 4 November 2013
Upgrade Your Teaching - New Learnline Tools
webpage link
Issue 3 September 2013
Learning & Teaching Week 2013
PDF (243kb) Word (13KB)
Issue 2 May 2013
Teaching Spaces Upgrade
PDF (223kb) Word (163KB)
Issue 1 February 2013
Introducing Learnline SP10
PDF (365kb) Word (161KB)
Issue 3 October 2012
Learning & Teaching Week wrap up
PDF (223kb) Word (163KB)
Issue 2 July 2012
CDU Mobile now available
PDF (365kb) Word (161KB)
Issue 1 May 2012
Inaugural issue
PDF (365kb) Word (161KB)