FETC 2010 News
Classroom Learning Platform Gets Plagiarism Control, New Reporting Tools
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Ed tech developer It's Learning has enhanced its Web-based learning platform with new safety and collaboration features. The platform encompasses multiple functions for use in the classroom, including blog and eportfolio software, sound and video recorders, discussion forums, plagiarism control, a gradebook, testing tools, attendance reporting, and alerts.
At the FETC 2010 conference this week in Orlando, FL, the company showed a new attendance and behavior collection and reporting module that enables teachers to track student participation. The platform provides integration with a school's existing student information system, which means a teacher won't have to log into a separate school administration system to do attendance. The attendance user interface has also been updated to include school-defined attendance codes.
The newest release of the software-as-a-service application has added an advertising-free version of Gmail from Google in the dashboard available to students and teachers. The company will set up a named domain for each client or migrate existing Gmail accounts into its platform. District IT administrators can then set up e-mail lists that follow the same academic hierarchies as the classroom platform follows, allowing teachers to communicate with entire classes, groups, or individual students. This classroom-friendly version of Gmail allows users to manage all of their email accounts by bringing them into a single location and includes safety features.
The integrated Google Postini service is designed to stop spam and viruses, prevent phishing, and prevent denial of service, directory harvest, and other attacks. Administrators control who has communication rights and who can see specific profiles. For example, in an instance of cyber-bullying, protection features can be enabled to restrict communication between certain individuals.
Also, the company has updated its software development kit to include support for third-party plugins, in addition to traditional application integration.
The service costs between $10 and $15 per user per year, the company said.
Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.