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Email Archive: Welcome Back Fall 2023

The following was emailed to faculty via their Academic Technology department liaisons in August, 2023.

Greetings and welcome back from Academic Technology!

I hope your summer is going well! As we all prepare to return to campus for the fall semester in a few weeks, I wanted to reach out about how Academic Technology can support you and your students. I am your Academic Technology liaison, and I can assist you with technology-related projects you might be considering for your classes. I can also assist with using Moodle, our learning management system.



Gradescope is a product that will help speed up grading as well as help you provide quality and consistent feedback. We will first be introducing it to faculty in math and the sciences since those are departments where Gradescope is popular at other schools. We’ll grow out from there. If you are not in one of those areas but would like to try Gradescope anyway, please let us know. If you’d like a preview of Gradescope, click here for a 15 minute demo video.


This August, our team collaborated with the library to run the 2023 Willoughby Institute for a number of faculty. The focus was on Universal Design for Learning along with new tools in digital storytelling, ai, story maps, and virtual reality. Marni Jones and James D’Annibale are planning on hosting further UDL workshops in the near future.

If you’re hoping to learn about UDL and how technology can help with accessibility, please reach out to James at

Moodle Upgrade

Moodle was upgraded to version 4.1 at the end of July. We’ve prepared a video playlist highlighting the changes you should be aware of. The main changes include:

  • A more modern look.
  • Collapsible course index for easier navigation and less scrolling.
  • Improved drag and drop course materials from index to anywhere on course page.
  • Ability to create a customized view on My Courses page.
  • Simplified “Course reuse” function under “more” in main course menu to copy content from old courses to new.


AI has continued to evolve over the summer.  Academic Technology encourages faculty to contact James or Todd for support of possible uses in classes and scholarship.

  • Notes on the AI workshop in Willoughby
  • Locally hosted open source instance of Stable Diffusion in the makerspace. The link to Stable Diffusion only works while you are on-campus.
  • Integration of text to image generative AI in our subscription to Photoshop
  • Text generated AI is publicly available via OpenAI, Bing, Bard, and Claude.
  • Locally created Japanese AI chatbots at Dickinson. (fyi, in development only available on campus)

Media Center Spaces and Equipment 

  1. Quest 2 (Virtual Reality headset) – stop down and try an immersive experience

Classroom Equipment Upgrades

Six classrooms were upgraded to have full-room microphones and two PTZ cameras to make web-conferencing and lecture capturing easier and more appealing. The rooms are: Althouse 109, Althouse 207, Denny 311, Denny 313, Bosler 213, Rector Stuart 1113.


  1. Digital storytelling – Students transform their research into an engaging and informative project. Can take many forms
  2. Podcast – Black Music Matters
  3. Short Documentary – Human Place in Nature 
  4. Infographic – Making the Case for Bike Racks
  5. Storymap –Dickinson Farm
  6. Class or scholarly websites –
  7. Civic Engagement – Carlisle Parks History
  8. Student Research – Mapping the Global Medieval Ages / Sexualization Paris 1900’s
  9. Science Lab – Chemistry in the Kitchen 
  10. Scholarly site (as standalone or companion to book/article) – Michael Field
  11. Digital bookmarking, class annotations and collaborative writing
  12. Digital collaboration workshop notes 


CLASSROOM ASSISTANCE: If you have an urgent technology problem in your classroom, please email with the nature of your problem, the room and building of your class, and your cell phone number (if possible), and we will help as soon as possible.

STUDENT PROJECTS: If you are planning to have your students work on multimedia (video, podcast, infographic, timelines), please contact me as soon as possible to schedule a consultation to plan the assignment, schedule classroom multimedia presentations/workshops, and discuss any equipment needs.

Please let me know if you would like to meet to discuss projects for your classes or the spaces or equipment that we have available for you and your students. I’m looking forward to talking to you about how I can help you in your upcoming courses.

Best wishes for a great fall semester from the entire Academic Technology team,

James D’Annibale, Ryan Burke, Todd Bryant, Anna Kerstetter, Brenda Landis, Ben Batchelor, and Tom Smith 






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