David in Carroll Land: Liz, Amy, and DumbleDave Explore ExamTime

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David

Examtime is a relatively new (beta) version piece of software which has interesting potential for students and teachers. Here is a relatively recent Lifehacker review.

by dsimpson

Here is an example of a fun “quiz” I made. I included multiple choice, True/False, and multiple response check-list formats. It was easy to upload images. I’d like to see the capability to include html code, videos, and hypertext links.
by dsimpson

Here is a silly example of flash cards:
by dsimpson
Here is some feedback I received from two of my research assistants, Liz and Amy:
Amy

Liz
ExamTime is an education tool used to make mind maps, quizzes, and notecards. The application also allows you to take notes and build schedules for studying. ExamTime is a great place to for students and educators to collaborate and share information. The application is currently in a beta version and is a free tool.

To explore the features of ExamTime I made a mind map, notecards, and a quiz. Of the three, the most time was spent on the mind map, which was the most extensive of the three. I found the ability to personalize the mind map very appealing. ExamTime allows you to make the map as linear or randomized as you wish. Other features include, the ability to add notes or pictures within the mind map and to customize the shapes and colors to make the map visually appealing. This tool is an exceptional addition to classrooms, educators, and students of all ages. For example, 100 level language students could use ExamTime flashcards to study vocabulary, make a mind map for verb-conjugation practice and quizzes for cultural integration.

Things I especially liked. On the surface, the application is very simple, but has many features. I particularly like the ability to create quizzes to share with friends for studying together. I also love that after creating a mind map, with a simple click you can transfer the information into notes. Additionally, you can add videos, links, photos, and slideshows to a note. Not only does this application have a significant number of options for studying, it is very user friendly and allows members to organize a large pool of information quickly and easily.

Things in Need of Improvement. When making an extensive mind map, there is a set amount of space available, so running out of room can be a concern with this application. Another struggle is perfectly matching the color and shapes of nodes so the final product looks polished and professional. Additionally, hypertext links cannot be added to the information which can limit some types of information sharing.

What are your experiences with Examtime? How does it compare with other similar software?

Retooling (Part 1)

Time to retool. Just had installed a new IMac in my lab with a new color laser printer. How things have changed from my TRS80 Radio Shack computer and "dumb" terminal days!

Almost ready to take the plunge and to migrate my personal Mac Laptop Pro to the MAC Lion operating system. So much to learn…

I am blessed this year with an unusually talented group of bright, young, fun, eager-to-learn, student assistants. Just had my office dual operating system Mac Laptop (OS10.6 and Windows7) recloned with Carroll software. Have been playing with an Ipad and an Kindle. Gearing up for teaching the Research Seminar next semester (hope I get a few students!), and most importantly, just sharpened a new box of pencils and added to them extended erasers! Some needed school supplies never change!

Time to revisit. I see that Jane Hart is about to announce the final polling results of her Top-Tools-for-Learning  List. Always worth revisiting, so I examined each of the 100 tools listed and will be directing my research assistants to a subset of them before I "cast my vote." For me the critical questions are:

  1. Will mastering this tool increase the likelihood of my becoming a more effective teacher?
  2. Which of these tools will enhance my research and my research communication capabilities?
  3. Which of these tools do I want all my students to know how to use? (Which are best for freshmen versus seniors?)
  4. Which of these tools will be around in the next four years?
  5. Which of these tools serve me best when I am engaged in my nonacademic role as partner of Schneider Consulting?
  6. Among subsets of tool types, which best serve my needs?
  7. How much learning time do I or my students need to invest to use these tools?
  8. Are these tools portable across the browsers I most frequently use?
  9. Are these tools portable across the hardware I most frequently use and am about to explore?
  10. How much of the attractiveness of these tools to me is simply due to their "wow factor" and the fun they engender?

    Stay tuned.