Fall 2010 Courses are now Available on Blackboard 9

Blackboard 9.1 LogoGRCC’s Distance Learning and Instructional Technology department has exciting news: GRCC has successfully upgraded from Blackboard version 8 to version 9 over the summer.  Blackboard 9 features engaging new social learning (Wimba Pronto instant messaging, blogs, journals, and wikis) and teaching tools (Wimba Voice, NBC Content, YouTube, Slideshare, and Flickr mashups) while also enhancing workflows for instructor efficiency and improving the overall quality of the system.

All faculty that have been assigned courses for Fall 2010 in Peoplesoft have access to the new system NOW!  (Note: The date in which the new Blackboard system will be available to students is August 20th as this leaves time for grading and the completion of the summer semester which is currently on version 8.)

Blackboard 9 Screen Shot

Here are a few steps to get you going quickly with Blackboard 9:

STEP 1:  Download and Install the Firefox Browser
We believe that while Blackboard has a new look and feel, the original metaphor is the same.  That is, you can still create announcements, add items, upload files, and add gradebook entries inside a familar course environment that also includes a control panel on the lower left.  Additionally, you will notice that the system is focused on increasing instructor efficiency through fewer clicks, while also providing a wide array of new features that are intended to enhance student engagement.  With the new features and enhanced interface, we STRONGLY recommend using the Firefox browser with Blackboard 9.  If you need an updated Firefox version on your computer, we encourage you to download and install this browser for the best  experience with Blackboard.  The Firefox installer is located here: http://www.mozilla.com

STEP 2: Watch the Orientation Video and/or Review the Getting Started Document
To help you get going quickly in the new version, please take a moment to review the getting started PDF: http://tinyurl.com/blackboard9gettingstarted   In a nutshell, the key to using Blackboard 9 includes understanding how to use the following user interface enhancements: Edit Mode, Context Menus, and Drag & Drop.  Here is a quick video tutorial that describes the basics of using Blackboard 9:  http://tinyurl.com/grccbb9quickstart

STEP 3: Access your Fall Courses
In order to begin building your Fall courses NOW on the new Blackboard 9 system, simply click on the “Fall 2010” tab which is available in Blackboard as you login.  Also available on this tab is a wide array of getting started information, tutorials, and some exciting new features that are included with the new system.   So login today at http:/bb.grcc.edu and look for the Fall 2010 tab!  (Note: The Blackboard 9 server is a complete copy of the current production system from June 18th.  When you login to the new server, all of your existing content and courses will be there, and you can use “Course Copy” to prepare your Fall courses.  Course Copy is available in the Control Panel under “Packages and Utilities”.  If you have content that was updated after June 18th, please export from version 8 and import into version 9.  Assistance is available via email at: dlit@grcc.edu.)

If you have any questions, need help in getting started, or need assistance with the new system, please email dlit@grcc.edu.  In addition, there are several face to face training (and drop-in) sessions offered through the Center for Teaching Excellence at: www.grcc.edu/ctecurrentlearning and also a wide array of video tutorials available on GRCC’s YouTube site.

GRCC in the News: 8/7/10-8/9/10

MCC softball team sets a trend for West Michigan athletes
by heatherasmith on 04. Jun, 2010 | West Michigan All Star [Blog]

Every year there are a handful of West Michigan players that put their home towns on the map. That process is relatively easier with multiple West Michiganders representing the same team. […] “I actually started playing softball at Grand Rapids Community College and came home to be closer with my family, and to save money and because the program was so inviting,” said former Reeths-Puffer player Nicole Suchy. “Plus I have got to play softball with three girls I played with in high school.”  (More)

Wayne State signs four baseball players
Posted: Aug. 7, 2010 | Metro & state | Detroit Free Press

Volleyball: Oakland University signed middle hitter Katie Horling of Zeeland and defensive specialist Becca Means of Caledonia. Horling, a transfer from Grand Rapids Community College, was named to the National Junior College Athletic Association Division II All-America first team.  (More)

Robert Israels sued over $6 million loan, plans Klingman’s, Israels furniture sales to pay off debt
Published: Friday, August 06, 2010, 6:30 AM | Chris Knape | The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS — A $6 million past-due bank loan has landed furniture store owner and developer Robert Israels in court.  In response, he’s having a liquidation sale at his Israels Designs for Living and Klingman’s Furniture stores as a way of quickly raising capital and trying to work through what he said has been the first money-losing year in his company’s history.  […] In addition to his own businesses, tenants in Israels’ West Side buildings include Spectrum Health, Grand Rapids Community College, Fourth Street Deli, Lake Michigan Credit Union and information technology firm OST.  (More)

Oakland Volleyball Adds Two More: Katie Horling and Becca Means join the Golden Grizzlies.
Aug. 6, 2010 | Oakland Grizzlies News

ROCHESTER, Mich. – Katie Horling (Zeeland, Mich.) and Becca Means (Caledonia, Mich.) will be on the court for the Oakland University volleyball team in 2010.  Horling, a transfer from Grand Rapids Community College, was named to the National Junior College Athletic Association Division II All-American first team. The Raiders finished 21-10 and reached the Michigan Community College Athletic Association championship game.   (More)

Grant news digest
By CC Times, Published August 4, 2010

Kalamazoo Valley Community College  has received a three-year $300,000 grant from the Kalamazoo Community Foundation to help underprepared adult college students succeed in developmental education courses. […] “Some students need an extra boost to bridge the gap between high school and post-secondary education,” said Juan Olivarez, who served as president of Grand Rapids Community College prior to joining the Kalamazoo Community Foundation as its CEO.  (More)

Question No. 7: Who will win the battle at QB? (and a link)
Ross Dellenger | Posted on August 6, 2010 | Clarion Ledger

Ah, the question you’ve all been waiting for — and the one you’ve probably assumed was coming. […] Casey Therriault, junior transfer: We’ve written all about Therriault  already (We had to get it out of the way early, and we did). He has some impressive numbers during his year at Grand Rapids Community College last year:  (More)

Fix on I-196 ahead of schedule, continues to help, hurt businesses
Published: Saturday, August 07, 2010, 5:11  | Monica Scott The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS — Motorists inconvenienced by traffic jams or a business affected by a “Fix on I-196” detour are more interested in the $40 million construction project’s completion than its progress. […] “Just trying to get on Fulton Street or Michigan Street in the morning or late afternoon, you could be waiting for a very long time,” said Mason DeMott, a Flint native attending Grand Rapids Community College. “The roads are packed. A trip that took a couple minutes could take 15 to 20 minutes.”  (More)

GRCC Employees on the Move: 8/9/10

Golden Raiders (Retirees)

  • Howard Shanken, Registrar, Registrar’s Office, 17 Years of Service

Thank You for Your Service (Departing Employees)

  • Deidre Begay, Support Professional, Counseling and Career Center

Welcome to GRCC (New Employees)

  • Stephen Henkelman, Assistant Professor, Job Training, Reports to George Waite
  • Andrew Lee, Employment Services Specialist, Michigan Works!, Reports to Emily Santellan
  • Johnathan Wolff, Employment Services Specialist, Michigan Works!, Reports to Emily Santellan
  • Jennifer Goulooze, Employment Services Specialist, Michigan Works!, Reports to Emily Santellan

Pottery Sale Today (8/9/10)

Orphaned student artwork needs a home, so the Visual Arts department is having a public sale Monday, August 9, 2010 from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm in Room 3 of the Main Building on G1 level (Pottery Room). All items are cash and carry only and all proceeds will go to Art Club. If you have questions, leave a message at ext. 4182.