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Spring 2013

Issue 54, Spring 2013 This issue contains information about the conversion to Canvas from Blackboard, Microsoft software for students, faculty & staff, the 2013 Innovative Teaching Showcase, Web Services Updates, Adobe software license changes, new computer monitors, and other technology updates to consider if you are leaving for the summer. 


Moving from Blackboard to Canvas

Author: John Farquhar

Adoption of the Canvas Learning Management System is moving forward. In the spring term, 400 teachers are using Canvas to teach nearly 600 courses to 10,000 students. Since the start of our adoption, the Learning Systems team has taught more than 100 Canvas-related workshops. Courses for the summer and fall terms are all available for faculty to develop. We believe that the campus is well-prepared for full adoption of Canvas for the Fall 2013 term.

If you have yet to prepare for the move from Blackboard, we’d like you to know that...

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Microsoft® Office 365 for Education

Author: Rick Nichols

Our Western students will soon be migrating from their existing Microsoft Live@edu student accounts to Microsoft Office 365 for education accounts. Their new accounts will be made available shortly after the end of spring quarter 2013 and will initially consist of web-based email, calendaring, and contacts.

 Later in this free upgrade process, students will gain additional Office 365 productivity tools including cloud-based Office applications, file sharing, instant messaging, and online...

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Video Services Produces Today Show Interview

Author: Robert Clark

On Monday, April 22, ATUS Video Services produced an interview with Dr. Ira Hyman for NBC’s “The Today Show.” Producers from the nationwide morning program were eager to have Dr. Hyman talk about his recent research about why certain songs get stuck in your head.  

Within a very short time after confirming the requirements of the interview, Video Services Manager, Robert B. Clark, and Multimedia Services Manager, John Farquhar, started working with Dr. Hyman in the WWU TV Studio. The Today Show producer provided the questions via...

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Web Services Moving to University Relations

Author: Frank Roberts

ATUS Web Services, renamed as WebTech, is now officially reporting to University Relations. It is with mixed feelings that I announce this because Marie Raney and her team have been a vital part of ATUS and Information Technology, and we will miss the direct relationship. However, I believe this is the right move for the institution and through our collaborative nature and coordination meetings we will still be active together. For now, Marie’s group will continue to be housed on the fifth floor of Wilson Library, with an eventual move...

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Innovative Teaching Showcase

Author: Justina Brown

This year’s Innovative Teaching Showcase theme, “Teaching Civic Engagement,” honors faculty who have re-envisioned what it means to help students be active citizens engaged in their communities and in their learning in a variety of ways. Please attend the Showcase Learning Event on Monday, June 10, Noon - 2:00 PM, Wilson Library 268/270 to learn more about the ways the following instructors at WWU have implemented this approach:

  • Robin Kodner, Biology
  • Gene Myers,...

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Campus Web Developers Meeting - Git Version Control System

Author: Marie Raney

Campus web developers and programmers are invited to a hands-on demonstration of the Git Version Control system on May 31 at 3pm in HH 153.

What makes Git different from other code version control systems?

According to the Git website:

Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency. Git is easy to...

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Now Accepting Computer Lab Reservations for Summer and Fall Quarters

Author: Rob Galbraith

Please make requests for summer and fall computer lab reservations as soon as possible to get the best space possible for your needs. You can request a general university lab reservation using the Request a Reservation online form on the ATUS Computer Labs page. Also use this form to request special software to be installed. Please make special software requests for computer labs no later than finals week of the preceding quarter.

You can view available computer lab...

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Things To Do Before Leaving for Summer

Author: Sean Stockburger

Before leaving for the summer, please review the following computer account tips so you can hit the ground running when you return for Fall quarter.

Password Expiration:

The number one reason faculty, staff, and students contact the Help Desk at the end of summer is forgotten or expired passwords. You can avoid this frustration by updating your password before it expires and making sure you keep your password security questions/answers updated. It’s easy for us to forget how we answered some of the questions...

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Software Updates

Author: Susan Brown

This article includes information about scheduled software upgrades for general university labs and classrooms, Microsoft software for students, faculty and staff, and Adobe software program changes.

Annual Software Upgrades Planned for General University Labs & Classrooms

Upgrades to the following software versions in general university labs and classrooms are planned for fall quarter 2013: Microsoft Office 2013, SPSS 21, MatLab 2013a. Faculty, please adjust your lesson plans and documentation if needed....

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Update on Drupal Conversions

Author: Marie Raney

Several colleges are currently working on their Drupal websites. In some cases departments and programs within those colleges are actively developing their own sub-sites. In other cases the department and program pages will be added to the college site in a second phase.

The Process

When working with the colleges, we, formerly ATUS Web Services and now WebTech, generally start by talking to the Dean’s staff about the college site. Together we review the existing site and talk about plans for the new site....

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Computer Hardware Tech Tips

Author: Fred Robson

There has been a slight change in monitor sizes lately. Some say it is because of the need to accommodate Windows 8. You might notice that some of the new models are not as tall as the previous ones. This can be true in laptops as well as desktop models. If the size matters on your display, take a close look at the actual dimensions and perhaps move up to a larger display. For example, the 22” & 23” monitors will not display the same number of lines on the screen as the 24”. However the 24” “UltraSharp” is priced $248 above the standard...

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Student Technology Fee Increase Approved

Author: Susan Brown

After gathering feedback from students on campus, the STF Renewal Committee recommended renewal of the Student Technology Fee at a rate of $35.00 per quarter for students with 6 credits or more and $17.50 per quarter for students with 1 to 5 credits for a period of 5 years.  This renewed version of the Student Technology Fee was approved by student vote and will:

  • Provide for computer lab renewal and replacement
  • Fund the Microsoft Student Advantage (A license for Windows and Microsoft Office)...

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