Greetings! Today’s tip is in the form of a quick preview of a new email feature coming to UP campus soon. In this short video, learn how using the Focused Inbox and help keep distractions at bay and concentrate on what’s important. Don’t like the Focused Inbox? This video also shows you how to turn this feature on or off.
Greetings! Today’s tech tip is all about real-time collaboration in Office 365. The short video below gives you all the info you need to get started synchronously sharing, editing, chatting, and commenting on a Word document using Word Online (if you need an intro or refresher on Word Online check out this tip: Getting Started With Word Online.)
Using the cloud to co-edit documents is transformative. Once you start using the cloud, you’ll never go back to flash drives, floppy drives, CD-ROMS, or file cabinets again!
PDF’s are a great format to share learning materials with students. They are readable on just about any device and their small file size makes them easy to upload, download, or send through email. Additionally, PDFs are very good for accessibility – when properly formatted they are usable by students who need assistive technology such as screen readers or text-to-speech applications.
Most PDFs that have been created recently should already be in an accessible format (this includes PDFs that were converted from Word documents or that were provided by the Clark Library as course reserves) – however if you are curating PDF content from the web or from your own books or journals you’ll need to ensure accessibility yourself. In this video, you’ll learn how to easily double check a PDF
In this video, you’ll learn how to easily double check a PDF for basic accessibility and use either of two simple computer applications (both are free for UP faculty) to create an accessible version when needed.
- To download Read and Write Gold, visit the UP Virtual Service Center and click on the option for Software Downloads. RWG is available for PC and Mac and can be installed on UP owned computers as well as personally owned faculty and student computers.
- To get Adobe Acrobat installed on your work computer, please contact the UP Help Desk
- More information on accessibility best practices is available from Accessible Education Services
In today’s tip I want to highlight Snagit, an amazing tool that is available for any UP faculty to install for FREE on any UP-owned computer (PC or Mac). Snagit is perfect for situations when it’s easier and more effective to show what’s happening on a computer screen rather than trying to explain in conversation or writing. It’s simple and easy to use and extremely effective.
In the training video below, the example of trying to explain an error message to an IT Help Desk is used. As someone who regularly helps with troubleshooting over email or the phone, I can attest that the truism “a picture is worth 1000 words” applies in this case. But think of all the other times you need to explain something to a colleague or your students. Much of the time a screenshot, perhaps with a simple arrow or text annotation, could be a big help!
Taking screenshots is easy, and just scratching the surface of Snagit’s capabilities. The app can also create short screencast videos, animated gifs, and contains a variety of tools for marking up and editing screenshots. If you’re inspired to try Snagit, you can send an email to the UP Help Desk to get the app installed for free (UP owned computers are covered by a site license).
Want to learn more about Snagit? You can check out the more Snagit training videos on YouTube or contact me for a personalized training session on Snagit and other screen capture tools available to UP faculty.
Now that UP is moved over to Office 365 mail, I wanted to start featuring some tips and tricks on using the modern web email experience that comes along with it. To begin with something fun, this week’s tip is on using Add-Ins to “supercharge” your mail! You can create Templates and Canned Responses, let a group vote on meeting times, connect to a checklist or notes app, and my favorite, embed fun animated GIF images in your messages!
Below is a short video showing how to get started with Add-Ins in Outlook on the web, and a few recommendations.
Outlook Apps: Getting Started
Do you ever find yourself writing basically the same email over and over again? This add-in is for you. Create the message once, and add it to emails with a single click. This add-in comes with Outlook, no need to turn it on. Just look for the My Templates icon when composing an email or writing in details in a calendar event.
You can connect either of these two productivity apps to your email. Create new list items or notes with a button press, or share your lists and notes when composing email. I personally use Wunderlist instead of the built-in Tasks in Outlook for more robust task management.
This useful app lets you choose several potential meeting times and them have a group vote to choose when to meet. This app has a lot of neat features and is well worth checking out:
Last but not least, Giphy allows you to embed fun GIF images in your emails. Sometimes there are no words and you just have to say it with a GIF!