Tag Archives: social networking

New UF COE Teaching Tools: Turnitin, Kaltura, and CometChat

The use of open source software that is maintained and developed within the COE allows us to quickly add new tools for teaching and learning. For the past couple of years, we have been able to roll out new features nearly every term, and this fall is no different. We look forward to showing off some of the new tools we have recently implemented and, as always, welcome and appreciate your input.

red and gray Turnitin logo

Turnitin Plagiarism Detector

Turnitin is the leading academic plagiarism detector, utilized by teachers and students to avoid plagiarism and ensure academic integrity. Now you can use Turnitin in your online or blended course, without you or your students ever needing to leave the course site. As a teacher, you can add a “Turnitin assignment” to your course, and student submissions will automatically pass through Turnitin’s filters, where they will be checked against other published works as well as other submissions within the course for authenticity.

All of the features of the normal Turnitin system are available, but you and your students won’t have to manage another password, or go to a different site to grade or submit online assignments. The grades for Turnitin Assignments will show up by default in the Moodle grade book, and you can even add feedback on submissions right on the submitted document.

For more details on how to use Turnitin in your online or blended course, feel free to download the complete documentation, or contact us at onlinesupport@coe.ufl.edu.

Kaltura Video IntegrationKaltura "creating together" logo

Kaltura is a difficult product to describe, because it does so many things. We have used Kaltura for almost 2 years now to distribute video content for the COE, but we have recently integrated it with Moodle. Now you can quickly and easily add video resources to your online or blended courses, without leaving your course.

You can greatly enhance your presence in online courses by capturing video directly into your course. To do so, simply ‘Turn editing on,’ and click ‘Add a resource…Video’. This will bring up options to either upload a video from your computer, or capture directly from your webcam. You can even allow students to add videos as assignment submissions using the ‘Video’ assignment type.

For more details on how to incorporate videos into your online or blended course, feel free to contact us at onlinesupport@coe.ufl.edu.

CometChat window

CometChat Real-Time Communication

CometChat has been available on our Community site for a few months now. We’re excited that it will also be available in Moodle starting this fall. With CometChat, you and your students can type chat, video chat, and even share documents and files without ever having to leave Purlieu.

On the Community side, anyone you add as a “friend” will show up in the blue bar at the bottom of the screen while you are blogging or sharing bookmarks. On the Courses side, anyone who shares a current course with you or your students will be available to chat whenever they come online. You can even start a “Chatroom” and invite students to join you to collaborate on a document or discuss an assignment. Think of it like a really simplified version of Elluminate that is available anytime.

For more details on how to use CometChat, feel free to contact us at onlinesupport@coe.ufl.edu.

virtual soccer network

In the past few days some members of the soccer team I have joined put together a blog site. I’m really interested to see how the blog works out.


The team just formally got together a couple of months ago. Many of the 20 (or so) players didn’t know each other before our first real practice. I suspect several of the players are unfamiliar with blogging and probably lack a lot of web-efficacy. There are a few of us techies who could potentially facilitate if there are any problems.


As yet we haven’t found a really good means of communication for the large group. Different personal schedules and several city league cancellations/schedule changes have made it tough to get to know and appreciate one another’s abilities on and off the field.

In three days the blog has been populated with about 10 members and a dozen or so posts/comments. It will be fun to see how such an intimately detached social technology as blogging will facilitate the growth of a nascent football club.

Back in the saddle

Personal News

It’s been a while since I have sat down to add an entry. Hopefully things will get rolling again here soon.

I recently had a run in with the pesky little fairies that make my computer turn on and talk to the web. Apparently they weren’t very happy with the Bloglines subscriptions I have maintained for the past 6 months or so, and they decided to get rid of them. I emailed the nymphs in CA that maintain the Bloglines servers, but I think it may have been too little too late. We’ll see.

My old band, Edward the Bear, will be getting back together for another famous reunion show Saturday, Feb. 17, around 10 or 1030pm. Any and all are welcome. I believe the cover will be a 5 spot. Hope to see you there.

I am in the process of changing jobs. I fell in to a bit of a financial hole last semester and decided I was better off working full-time, and going to school part-time. I can’t really see any problem with slowing down the progression of school if I can get hands-on experience in the mean time. All of that should be straightened out in the next couple of weeks.

In other news

I was pretty excited to see Barack Obama declare his presidential candidacy via a live web cast this past Saturday morning. He is quickly mounting a strong campaign presence on the web. The site devoted to his campaign, BarackObama.com, actually provides a portal to a social networking community developed specifically for interested voters. One can develop a personal profile, network with like-minded individuals, and create a political blog.

I think this is pretty ingenious and it shows quite a bit of connection with contemporary trends. And probably a well-recruited group of advisers.