Skip to Main Content

For Faculty: Educational Technology

Educational Technology at Columbia College banner with purple accents

Hello from your Educational Technology Librarian!

I am here to support you in using technology to enhance teaching and learning in- and outside your classrooms.

On this page, check out some tools and resources we have at Columbia College.


Instructure, who makes Canvas, has a huge number of helpful guides for both faculty and students. Here are some guides to help with setting up your course.


  • Adding a module
    Modules are the building blocks of Canvas. You can think of modules as file folders: the items in the folder are sorted and organized in a specific way
  • Adding content to a module
    There are different types of module items you can add: pages, assignments, discussions, links, third-party integrations, and headings. Using headings and indentation can help with readability. This guide shows how to add content, either pre-created or that you create in the module itself.
  • Publishing modules, which makes them visible to students

Assignments and Quizzes

  • Adding an assignment
    Assignments are anything graded in Canvas. If you want something to appear in the gradebook, you'll need to make an assignment. This includes, say, participation assignments. Linked pages on this guide go into how to set up submission types, due dates, and more.
  • Creating a quiz
    Canvas has two quizzing engines: Classic and New Quizzes. Both have different functionality, so it's worth considering how you want students to be able to access your test. This page goes into detail on quizzes of both types.

Grades and Gradebook

  • Using the gradebook
    Anything you add to Assignments will appear on the Grades page. This guide goes into detail about how you can grade from this page, rather than using SpeedGrader. It also talks about different view options as well as ways to contact students who meet certain criteria (such as scoring below a certain grade).

Supported Tools

All faculty, and most students, have access to several downloads of Microsoft 365. This includes Word, PowerPoint, and Excel, all of which can be used in teaching and research!

To download your copies, you'll need to login to your Office 365 account. Login with your CC e-mail address and password.

After logging in, click on the circle at the top-right with your profile link. This will usually have your initials, though it might be in last initial-first initial order.

From the menu that appears, select "View account."

Find the button that reads "Office apps." Below will read, "Install and manage Office applications." Click "Manage."

Office apps, Install and manage Office applications, Manage

On that page, you'll see an "Office apps & devices" option. Click the "Install Office" button.

Office apps & devices, You can install Office on up to 5 PCs or Macs, 5 tablets, and 5 smartphones.

Finally, you'll see a page with an option to install Office 365. It should register whether you are on a Windows or Mac and provide you with the appropriate download file.

Installation bar for Office 365, with a button reading "Install Office"

If you want to install a Microsoft 365 app, all you'll need to do is go to your App Store or Play Store, install the app you want (such as Word), then log in with your CC e-mail and password.

Padlet is a tool that allows for thoughtful curation and visible engagement with media.

With Padlet, you can ask questions and poll students in real time, both in the classroom and during an online class. You can host asynchronous discussion and voting. You can create kanban boards and concept maps. There are even map and timeline templates!

Screenshot of example padlet on AI tools

Here is an example padlet showing AI resources. Note how resources have been organized into categories.

Padlet allows for the uploading of multiple media types—songs from Spotify, YouTube videos, audio recordings, images, and text.

Right now, we have a private portal for Columbia College that you can embed on Canvas. Want a license to create private padlets for your classes? Reach out to Educational Technology.

WeVideo is a browser-based video-editing tool. There are no downloads, just a website where you and students can upload videos, photos, and audio clips. Using the timeline, you can drag and drop your uploads—as well as media from WeVideo's massive Creative Commons-licensed library—and turn them into engaging videos.

WeVideo editing interface, showing the timeline and video preview window of a library-focused video

This is an example video project done for the library, using various archival photos and royalty-free music.

WeVideo can be useful for creating short, snappy edits of recorded video content. This could be lesson content or videos for social. On the student side, it is a robust, but user-friendly, way to create experiential videos.

If you would like to use WeVideo in your class, reach out to make sure we have enough licenses. Also get in touch if you'd like to use it to edit content for your classes, particularly your online classes or for virtual conference videos.

Zoom is a videoconferencing tool that allows you to have one-on-one virtual meetings, meet as a committee, and hold online class sessions.

Here are some guides on using some of Zoom's features:

Zoom has automatic captions that you can enable to make sure your video is accessible. You can also set your pronouns at the start of a session held on the Columbia College server.

The college has a limited number of Zoom licenses. Reach out to the provost's office if you would like to see if a license is available. Once you have a license connected to the Columbia College account, you can then use the Zoom page built into Canvas courses to manage meetings and share recordings.

Here is a guide on using Zoom in Canvas from Yale.

ScreenPal, formerly known as Screencast-O-Matic, is a user-friendly screencasting tool that you can use to record your screen and do basic edits for creating tutorial videos and lecture content.

If you'd like access to this tool, please reach out to Educational Technology to request the link to access. Each download uses one of our licenses, so please only install on one device.

YuJa is a video tool that is embedded into every Canvas course. By default, there will be a link to YuJa on your course navigation menu unless you hide it.

YuJa link

Students can also see this link, so if you don't want them accessing it or need to clear the course menu, you can remove it from a course and still access it from another course page where it hasn't been removed.

YuJa screenshot, with a folder and part of the dashboard visible

This is the main YuJa page, accessed by clicking "YuJa" from the course menu. You will see all your media, which can be organized into folders and edited after uploading.

To access and use YuJa, check out this guest issue of the Tech Tips Tuesdays newsletter, where the campus instructional designer has shared many links and resources.

Additionally, YuJa can be used for accessibility and in making sure that captions are available for videos.

Once you've enabled auto-captions from the Accessibility menu, which you can do with instructions from the above link, you should this edit them to make sure they are accurate. You can do so by going to your video, then clicking "Edit" to go to the video editor. On the editor, turn on your captions with the Captioning button (captions button). Your captions will appear on a menu that looks like this:

YuJa caption editing screen, with example captions shown in screenshot

You can now edit your captions for typos and other inconsistencies!

Respondus is the company that makes LockDown Browser, a proctoring tool available at Columbia College. LockDown Browser has been enabled for Canvas.

The "LockDown Browser" page is not available to students, which you can see using Student View.

The following guides will show you how to enable and use the tool in your classes:

  • Instructor Quick Start Guide (PDF)
    This guide walks you through enabling the browser on your Canva quizzes, as well as explaining some of the important settings such as whether students can use iPads, if Monitor (webcam) is enabled, and more.

  • Student Quick Start Guide for Classic Quizzes (PDF)
    If you've set up your quizzes with the regular quiz engine, you can share this guide with students to get them started using the browser.

  • Student Quick Start Guide for New Quizzes (PDF)
    If you've set up your quizzes with New Quizzes in Canvas, the biggest difference is in how your students must access the browser. While Classic Quizzes allows for students to launch LockDown Browser directly, New Quizzes requires that they start in a regular browser such as Chrome or Firefox, then have that browser launch LockDown Browser.

If students are having trouble installing LockDown Browser, it may be that their device is not supported.

I use the following checklist to assess where the problem might lie:

  • Are you downloading from the correct site? Be sure that you’re getting to the download link from the assignment (by clicking “Take The Quiz,” which will open up a download link if you’re in another browser).
  • Is there an error opening the download? Be sure that you’re not on a firewall or that you don’t have anything blocking the download.
  • Is it saying that you don’t have permission to download? Be sure that you’re on a device that you own or that you have admin control over, as you won’t be able to download the browser otherwise. For example, campus or school computers will not let you download the program, as they require permissions to install the program.
  • Are you trying to download on an iPad? Confirm with your professor that the setting to allow iPad use is selected, as you won’t be able to download the app otherwise.
  • Are you seeing another error when installing the browser? There are a few errors that can pop up; what I recommend is writing down the error exactly as written, then going to Google and search for the error in quotes: (“like this”). So, you might search for “error” lockdown browser. This might bring up a help guide if you have, say, a screencasting tool on your computer that needs to be shut down before the browser can be used.

Turnitin can be enabled from any course in Canvas by going into the assignment settings for a File Upload assignment, then selecting Turnitin as the plagiarism checker.

Plagiarism Review option on Canvas assignment

Here are several guides on using Turnitin through Canvas that should be helpful for you.

Once Turnitin is enabled, you will be able to see a "Similarity Report" that indicates areas where text has been copied, as well as the source. Be mindful, however, that a high score may not indicate intentional copying, but instead a student who is learning how to cite sources. For that reason, it's important to check the report and not just use the percentage score as a cutoff.

For more information on how the score is determined, please see this guide from Turnitin, which includes scoring scenarios.

Educational Technology Librarian

Profile Photo
Jesika Brooks
Edens 214-B

Tech Tips Tuesdays

Each Tuesday, I send out a newsletter to faculty about various edtech tools. You can view the archive here.

Faculty Workshops

Click here to view a recording of the recent "Accessibility in Canvas and Adobe" workshop!

Logins for Edtech Tools

For some edtech tools, getting a license only requires that you access a certain link or use a certain password.

You can go to this link and enter the password from the Faculty Development page in Koala Connection.

Please do not share information outside of the college.