Saturday, November 14, 2009

Student Technology Survey Results

I wanted to gather some information from our grade 6-12 students to help me better support them in their use of technology both at school and at home. I sent the 1500 middle and high school students the survey as a Google Form in their Google Apps email account. The survey was open for two weeks and I received 98 responses. I did not do anything additional to convince students to complete the survey, so I was happy with the number of responses I received. I appreciate the students taking the time to respond!

Here are the results from the first 8 questions:

(Link to full-size online version.)

The last question gave the students the chance to comment when I asked "Anything you would like to tell me about your personal use of technology?" Here are some of the responses.

"I think it would be great to have WiFi all over the school for students to use. I often find myself at school and needing WiFi, especially being part of the theatre program and having long rehearsals when the library is closed. It would make doing online research and such during these times much easier."

"In school I do school related stuff on the school computers. Also at home I use my computer to IM (AIM) friends, update my MySpace, or check homework and grades daily."

"I use technology for mostly browsing, typing papers and research. Other than that, I use it only for Facebook and playing music. :)"

"I am a frequent Facebook user and if the high school were to go wireless with an assumption of the student body having access to it, Facebook wouldn't be as important to us since Nauset students are at school with you and non-Nauset students don't have access to the Web during the day."

Your comments or thoughts on the collected information?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Camtasia for Mac

I just downloaded the 30-day trial of Camtasia for Mac and am quite excited! Of course, most people think of Camtasia as a screen-capture tool for creating tutorials and such, which it does very well in this version, too. (It only captures full-screen, but it is very easy to crop to the selection you want later.) Here is a chart of the comparisons between this first version of Camtasia for Mac 1.0 and the Camtasia Studio for Windows 6.x product.

Only having spent a little time with it, my first impression is that, as well as an easy tool to create tutorials and screen captures (including video and sounds), Camtasia for Mac is a fairly full-featured video editing program that is also quite intuitive! You can import images and layer videos on top of them, layer videos on top of videos, easily separate audio and video lines, apply effects such as one similar to the Ken Burn's effect to videos after the fact, and much more!

The share menu item allows you to share to Screencast, YouTube, or iTunes, and the advanced export function allows exporting to AVI, QT, MPEG-4, and more, with the ability to pick your codec and quality options.

The TechSmith Web site has a great set of tutorials located here if you want to get a feel for the options it offers.

I might have found an easy-to-use tool that allows me to both create tutorials and access to a simple, but effective, video editing program! If you try it out, leave me a comment and let me know what you think!