Your Teaching Resource

Academic Resources Conference

ARC is Now Three Times a Year

The Academic Resources Conference (ARC) began as a single-day, in-person event in August, 2018.  Now, due to the pressures and opportunities of the "new normal," we have been able to expand our reach by moving the "conference" online. This year, we had a week of workshops in May, a week of training in June, and another week of training in August ... all offered through Zoom.  We will have another full week of ARC in January!  January's event will include social gatherings, training sessions, workshops, and panel discussions during the week of January 11-15.  If you have requests for offerings, just let us know with and email to

ARC June and August Sessions Online

Many of the June and August ARC sessions are now available online through YouTube.  To catch up on what you might have missed, have a look at our ARC playlist.  You can also access handouts, PowerPoint slides, and other session assets at our ARC Topics page.  Don't see something that should be there? Contact IDA and we'll locate it and get it online right away!

Join the ARC Facebook Group

Now that the ARC is more a "frame of mind" rather than a single event, there is much more to keep up with than ever before.  If you would like to have your finger on the pulse of what's going on, please join our Facebook Group. IDA posts short trainings, tips for online success, links to free online training opportunities around the country, and a lot of comics and other fun stuff. The ARC, it's not just for August anymore

One Small Thing

Quick, "Any Time" Zoom Icebreaker Idea

Feel like time is at a premium these days? We understand, so that's why we are starting a new column called "One Small Thing." Each month we will bring you one small thing you can try the next time you meet your remote class. We hope to help keep things fresh without overloading folks with too much technical training. This month's one small thing ... a Zoom-based icebreaker you can do with your students at any point during the semester. It's called "True for Me" and here's how it's played:

Each participant covers their camera to start. One person starts by saying something that is true for them. For example, "I am looking at a cup of coffee." Anyone that is also looking at a cup of coffee uncovers their camera, and they wave to one another and say good morning. Then the person that started, selects one of the people that had the same thing in common to start the next round. Repeat until everyone in the class has uncovered their camera.

"True for Me" allows students to have a social moment and a small connection before you begin your class. If your class is very big, you might put students into randomly-assigned breakout groups to play.


Pro Accounts

If you don't have a Zoom Pro account yet, it's time to get one! They are free and available by submitting a ticket here. Zoom Pro accounts will allow you to have meetings that last longer than 40 minutes while also offering you a greater variety of tools to play with. Not sure you know enough about Zoom to be successful? Have a look at our Zoom training video playlist for some quick, useful training.

Sign Language Interpreters in Zoom Classrooms

Wichita State professors are familiar with sign language interpreters in campus classrooms,  but what about your online/Zoom-based classes? There are a few tips and tricks you need to know in order for to make this common accommodation easy and comfortable for everyone. The Office of Disability Services and Instructional Design and Access have worked together to create two training pages to help. The first gives faculty some guidance about working with interpreters. The second is for students who have a Deaf student and interpreter in their online class. We hope these webpages provide the guidance you need, and if not, please reach out to ODS or IDT for more information.


Help Students Find Your Comments

You've taken the time to put assignments in Blackboard and to grade them using the awesome on-board grading tools, but now what? Are you finding that your students are not reading your comments, or seeming not to see them in full? The fact is, the student-side Blackboard interface can be a little confusing when it comes to finding comments and essay mark-ups. To help ensure students have access to this important part of their interaction with you, IDA has put together a very short video explaining how to access professor comments on graded work.  Please share this video with your students so they can benefit from all your hard work and insight:

Playlist of Student How-To Videos

With nearly all Wichita State students taking some kind of remote/hybrid class this academic year, the number of student questions that have come in to all support offices has exploded! We are working hard to make sure students have the information they need through all avenues. To support them with their Blackboard questions, IDA has created a playlist of short training videos for your students, and we are adding to it regularly. You can find the student playlist here, and we would love it if you could please share it with your students.

Playlist of Faculty How-To Videos

We also know that we have many new Blackboard users in both the facutly and staff.  If you are new to Blackboard, or just new to some Blackboard tools, you may have questions you would like answered as you work with the tool. IDA also has a playlist of training videos for you! Don't see what you need? Make sure to check our Blackboard Instructor Guide, try coming to our Zoom-based labs, and if you still have questions, just send us an email to and we'll do what we can to help you. IDA's motto is, "You Teach. We Help." So let us help you make your Blackboard class or organization everything you want it to be.


Little-Known Panopto Tools For YOU

Even if you have been using Panopto for awhile, we bet there are a few tools you don't know about. During the August ARC week, Alex Neubert from Panopto presented on "little known Panopto tools," and we are sure you will find her talk informative!


Finding Streaming Media at the Library

Now that many classes have a heavy online/remote presence, you may be looking for ways to put your favorite videos online too. The Wichtia State Libraries have several online media streaming options for you to try out. It's easy to add these media elements to your class, and your subject librarians will even help you find them. Have a look at this ARC session from August for more information:

Subject Librarians Help You!

In this session from the ARC, you will learn how librarians can collaborate with you in the design of assignments and research activities, create research guides and instructional materials for your classes, provide online instruction in the research process, and work with you to acquire e-books that you can then make available through Blackboard. 



Add Subtitles/Captions to PowerPoint in REAL TIME!

Did you know that PowerPoint can now add real-time captions/subtitles during your live presentations? This feature will even work in Zoom or Teams if you are sharing a PowerPoint on the screen. While these are "machine generated" captions and are thus not appropriate for accommodations, they are extremely helpful to all students as they help to reinforce the spoken word in real time. For more information about this new PowerPoint feature and how to use it, have a look at Ali Levine's short article about it here.

For Fun

Set Up and Escape Room in Your Bb Class

There has been a lot going on since March.  Moving classes from the physical classroom to the virtual space has been an exhausting undertaking. At the beginning, it may have seem impossible to even consider adding "fun" elements, but now that you have significantly more training and understanding about Blackboard, Zoom, and other tools, you may find yourself wondering, "Well... what can I do next!?" IDA would like to help instructors who are looking to add some "oomph" to their online classes by ending each newsletter with an idea to try out just "for fun." This month, how about adding an "escape room" or "treasure hunt" to your Blackboard class?  Here's how: