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WELCOME. Blogs, Blackboard, IM-ing, Facebook; as advisors, what are we to do with all of this technology?. Presenters. Mark Vegter – Academic Advisor, English Department E-mail: Mavegte@ilstu.edu Ryan Gray– Academic Advisor, English Department E-mail: krgray2@ilstu.edu. Overview.

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Blogs, Blackboard, IM-ing, Facebook;

as advisors, what are we to do with all

of this technology?



Mark Vegter – Academic Advisor, English Department

E-mail: Mavegte@ilstu.edu

Ryan Gray– Academic Advisor, English Department

E-mail: krgray2@ilstu.edu


Facebook, Blackboard,

Instant Messaging, Blogs,


Demonstration of how Blackboard and Facebook

are used in the ISU English Department

information about illinois state university
Information about Illinois State University
  • Six Colleges
  • Thirty-five Academic departments
  • 160 fields of study
  • Total Enrollment: 23,000
  • Undergraduate Students: 20,000
  • Graduate Students: 3,000
  • 50% of Undergraduate Students are from

the Chicago area

  • 24% are from McLean & surrounding counties
  • 58.4% of the Students are Female
  • 10.3% are Minority Students

Facebook Statistics

  • Launched on 4 February 2004 by a Harvard undergraduate
  • Site is free to users and is financed by advertising
  • 59 million registered users
  • Average of 3% weekly growth since January 2007
  • Facebook is the 4th most-trafficked website in the world (comScore)
  • Facebook is the most-trafficked social media site in the world (comScore)
  • Fastest growing demographic: People aged 25 and older.
  • Maintain 85 percent market share of 4-year U.S. universities
  • 14 million photos uploaded daily
  • Average user signs on 6 times daily; about 20 minutes per day
  • Over 500 Facebook users identify themselves as English majors at ISU
  • Taken from the Facebook Statistics page
blackboard at isu
Blackboard at ISU
  • Available to 100% of the ISU student population
  • Accessible through ISU’s portal: iCampus
  • Updates, Assignments, Announcements, etc., will show up when a student logs in to iCampus
  • Easy to use, no technology background required
  • Utilize outside vendors such as Drupal or Blogger
  • Can be used to disseminate information to students and receive feedback on it
  • A way to connect with prospective students during the recruiting process
blogging continued
Blogging Continued
  • Use current students to share their experiences
  • A way for students to journal their experiences in their respective major
  • Control the responses using permissions
  • 10 Steps to Better Blogs: http://www.universitybusiness.com/viewarticle.aspx?articleid=937&p=2#0
  • Turning Point Clickers, utilizes audience response and integrates into Microsoft Power Point
  • We currently utilize these in English 102, Proseminar in English Studies
  • A large lecture course with 184 students, the first course a student takes as an English major, coincides with English 100

Clicker Continued

  • Tool to gather data on the English undergraduate program
  • Types of information: Admissions, enrollment, major choice, etc.
  • Can be utilized to start discussion in a large lecture format
instant messaging
Instant Messaging
  • For limited use only
  • Private information, should not be given out over it unless it’s a secure connection
  • Facebook has an IM feature, which is not secure
  • Blackboard utilizes a “Chat” feature, which is secure through a university network
  • Set assigned times, or you’ll be “IM-ing” all day!
  • RPA Implications
  • How it’s utilized in the English Department
  • Tested an English advising group, with limited participation
  • Personalizes you to your advisees
  • Remain in contact with alumni
  • Track career paths of alumni
  • English Studies Association
  • How Administrators should approach Facebook:
  • http://chimprawk.blogspot.com/2006/01/how-university-administrators-should.html
  • A way to teach ethical and appropriate use of technology


Utilized in English 102

Advising “Courses” set up for the three sequences in English: English Studies, English Education and Publishing

Announcements that appear in the students’ iCampus portal

Reminders can be set to keep Education students “on-task” with requirements outside of coursework i.e. Basic Skills Test, Criminal Background Checks, Content Tests, etc.



  • Used to create identity among the three sequences within English
  • A Web-quest is set up in English Education to assist in students’ career exploration, since many of them are in English Education because they “don’t know what else to do with an English major.”
  • Chat and Discussion Board features provide a safe virtual advising environment