5 Software Essentials for Students and Teachers

The current health crisis has dramatically changed the landscape of education, as teaching and learning are now being done remotely. However, We Forum discussed its increasing popularity even before the health crisis — which means the likelihood of remote learning being part of education moving forward is extremely high. So, as we shift to a more digital way of learning, we've listed some essential software that teachers and students will need to learn online.

Learning management system: Google Classroom

In order to replicate the classroom setting, schools are now making use of learning management systems (LMS), which are essentially virtual classrooms. On these platforms, teachers can assign tasks online, and even automate performance tracking and documentation — thus freeing up teachers from time-consuming but important administrative tasks.

A useful LMS is Google Classroom, which received a Webby Special Achievement award this May. This easy-to-use platform provides an easy way for students and teachers to collaborate, and helps teachers track student progress. Users can also make use of popular Google tools such as Docs and Drive, making file sharing simple and efficient between peers.

Screencasting software: Screencast-O-Matic

Crucial to online learning is replicating the classroom experience. This has led to the rise of screencasting software, which helps teachers and students interact online. Unlike traditional video conferencing applications, HP’s list of screencasting software shows that this particular tech tends to come with additional features such as the ability to record voice-overs and annotate videos. It is also FERPA- and COPPA compliant to ensure students’ privacy. Screencasting software even allows teachers to record videos, which is vital to asynchronous learning.

A popular screencasting software is Screencast-O-Matic, as it is easy to use, offers cloud hosting, and integrates seamlessly with other software, like the aforementioned Google Classroom. Screencast-O-Matic also has an free version, which is perfect for schools with limited budgets.

Work-based learning software: Transeo

The AASA’s Redefining Ready! movement emphasizes the importance of work-based learning software, as it can “drive the economic engine for our youth” and help them determine what they want to do for the rest of their lives. This is precisely the reason we started Transeo, which allows students to identify their career area of interest and engage in career development activities. Moreover, Transeo connects students not only to educators and counselors, but also to their community, thereby allowing them to learn the soft skills they will need to succeed in life after school.

Data tracking: GoFormative / Transeo

Everything about distance learning is fluid nowadays. Some students, for instance, cannot attend virtual classes on a regular basis, while others find it difficult to accomplish online tasks. These scenarios make data tracking crucial, especially with most states emphasizing leniency in recording attendance. This is where data tracking software comes in handy. A Georgia Public Broadcasting article on data tracking explains that teachers can use data to not only measure student performance, but also to tailor their instructional approach moving forward.

When it comes to data tracking, Transeo allows educators to monitor assessments in real time, and even lets teachers and students track their progress and give or request immediate intervention. This makes it easy for teachers to keep track of relevant information related to every student under their supervision. Utilizing this type of platform helps you move away from time-consuming paper-based processes, thereby allowing educators and administrators to invest more time in their students.

Assessments: QuizStar

Testing is vital for teachers, as it is a way to gauge students’ learning. Fortunately, there are now online quiz makers that make it easier to create tests that students can answer online. The best thing about tests online is that most quiz makers offer automated checks, freeing up teachers from yet another cumbersome task.

A widely used quiz maker is QuizStar, which offers the aforementioned features, along with an option for students to immediately see the items they got wrong. This immediate feedback mechanism then helps students learn from their mistakes in real time, thus hastening the learning process.

Submitted exclusively for gotranseo.com
By Lindsay Jacobs