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Spring 2019 Report

Spring 2019 saw 11,651 students and faculty use Teaching and Learning with Technology’s Media Commons, Maker Commons, and Immersive Experiences Lab initiatives across the Commonwealth. Much of this use was focused in 259 classes in nearly every discipline offered at Penn State. To facilitate these interactions outside of University Park, Commonwealth consultants met with students and faculty at the campuses 75 times to offer in-person instruction, consultations and remote support.

One Button Studios at 19 campuses helped students and faculty create 10,896 academic videos, comprising over 14 straight days of video. Students across the Commonwealth also created 2,849 3D prints in pursuit of their own curiosity and course work.

The Maker Commons partnered with World Campus to provide support for FRAR 100 –  Introduction to Forensic Photography online course. Instructors provided 3D models of forensic photography content to be 3D printed, mailed to the online students, and used as subject matter for photography assignments. Previously, these assignments relied on students either purchasing material or using a wide-range of subject matter local to them which became difficult for the instructors to assess.

At University Park, students in Dr. Johanna Wagner’s IT 475 (Modern Italian Literature and Cinema) course produced 5-minute Neo-realist film adaptations of an important moment from one of several novels discussed during the semester. The students first translated the text into image storyboards, then recorded and edited their film using iMovie.

Capping off the Spring semester, the New Kensington campus celebrated the launch of their own IMEX-style viewing pod with a kick off event for faculty, staff and students.

Greater Allegheny ended the Spring 2019 semester by installing its first One Button Studio in the former traditional MeC studio located off the Crawford 001 computer lab. This will be further developed into one of many offerings in a BYO device + gaming lounge during the summer.

CH E 470 (Design of Chemical Plants) with Dawn McFadden at University Park saw groups of six students recording presentations on their designs for future chemical plants in which they developed critical design logic to evaluate processes, including block flow diagrams, simple material balances utilizing practical heuristics, process flowsheets through computer simulations, flowsheet optimization, and detailed equipment design.

The 3D printing service was overhauled in favor of new technology and new features for students and faculty to improve their 3D printing service. After an extensive review, Dremel 3D45 3D printers were selected to replace the old MakerBot 5th gen printers and Cloud Slicing software, 3DPrinterOS, was selected to replace the MakerBot Innovation Center. The Dremel printers are faster, cheaper, and provide higher quality prints while 3DPrinterOS allows for slicing and preparing files in the cloud, greater degree of administrative control and customization, and richer analytics.

At Altoona, two sections of CI 280 used video to capture autobiographies focused on what brought each pre-service teacher to their decision to work in classrooms with non-native English speakers.

In her online ENGL 202C and 202D courses, Tiffany MacQuarrie at Beaver leveraged instruction through Zoom to deliver both Media Commons overview training and group storyboard workshops to 39 students.

Students enrolled in BUSAD 811, as part of an MBA cohort splitting time at the Great Valley campus and Navy Yard, utilized the Media Commons iPads to create videos using the iMovie app, as well as a marketing campaign using the Adobe Spark Pages app. There were 13 students in the class. This was the first class supported by the Media Commons at the Penn State Navy Yard location.

At the Wilkes-Barre campus, independent study students and two faculty members teamed up to create instructional 360 videos on Surveying. They plan on continuing to make these videos, taking the cameras to construction sites, to create additional instructional content for the Surveying program at Wilkes-Barre.

At Beaver, Dr Cassandra Miller-Butterworth’s BIOL 220W made use of a custom-made course activity that leveraged the HHMI BiomeViewer and 360º video content to take students into the world’s many biomes. Working in teams of two, students made field notes based on their recently-learned understanding of climatograms for each of 19 terrestrial and aquatic locations.

In response to the evolving partnership at University Park with ENGL 15, the storytelling presentation and accompanying assignment was completely revamped to meet the needs of the new ENGL 15 project. This rewrite of the approach to storytelling places the emphasis on crafting a story first using three universal principles of storytelling, then helping students to translate their story and those principles to the medium of their choice (for the purposes of this assignment: Video, Website (Spark), Presentation (OBS), or Social Media). Over thirty sections and 1,500 students participated in the new storytelling workshop and assignment.

On the Media Commons website, the number of unique visitors reached 170,139, an increase of 142% from the Spring 2018 semester. The Free Media Library was viewed 10,976 times across all site users, ranking it as the 6th most popular content. Just 19,151 users originated in Pennsylvania, allowing for the rough inference that about 11% of website traffic was from Penn State students. Of the other 89% of website traffic, over half originated in the United States while 37% of visits originated outside of the country (63,879 visitors)

Other Media Commons family websites had solid semesters, as well. The Maker Commons site fielded 6,498 visitors, 63% of whom originated in Pennsylvania. Top content included the Submission tutorial (8,958 views) and form (8,721 views) as well as the update for 3DPrinterOS (3,829). Over at IMEX Lab, 1,188 users visited the site, though only 42% of these visits were based in-state, perhaps pointing towards similar growth to Media Commons content. The Experience Catalogue represented 18% of all page views, the most popular content on the site.