Technology and Scholarship Programs this Fall

The Delaware Law School Library (LIC) will be hosting a series of events this fall called the Cool Tools Cafe.  These short programs will include technology and educational sessions designed to inform the faculty and assist with classroom and scholarship needs.  The Cool Tools Cafe programs are designed to run for 20 minutes or less.  Get in, learn a little, grab a cookie, get out!

All programs will be held in the Special Collections Room in the main floor of the law library and will start at 1pm.  Bring your lunch, we will provide coffee and cookies, and a handout.

The program schedule is as follows:

Thursday, October 22, Placing Video in PowerPoint – Barbara Mindell
Using video clips to augment your PowerPoint presentation can have a powerful effect on your audience; helping students vividly remember the point being made or injecting some entertainment value to keep the audience at attention.  In this short session you will learn how to easily include video clips in your presentation so that they will play on command!

Thursday, November 12, Using Zotero to Manage Citations – Maggie Adams
Using a program like Zotero allows online researchers to quickly and easily gather the information they will need later to review and cite references and create bibliographies. Come to this short session to learn how easy it is to make Zotero part of your online research experience.  Once you start using Zotero, you won’t know how you ever got along without it!

Check back here as new programs get announced.

We hope to see you there!


Update your Panopto Video

Panopto recently released a new version of the recorder that takes advantage of HTML 5 and eliminates the need to use Silverlight.  This is a great thing as Microsoft has discontinued support for Silverlight, and there has been increasing difficulty playing the Panopto recordings with the older unsupported Silverlight versions.

With the new version of Panopto this problem not only goes away, but Panopto has given us a way to update our old recordings so that they continue to play in the new format.

Open the new document Converting_Panopto_Videos for instructions on downloading the new version, and converting your old recordings to the newer format.

Supreme Court Media Preview 2015

The annual Supreme Court Media Preview that we do here at Delaware Law School is now available to view.

Mary Allen, Barbara Mindell and Dave Vallee gathered together one day last month to videotape 6 of our esteemed faculty discussing the cases that are already before or likely to come before the Supreme Court this year.

We recorded Dean Rod Smolla discussing Fisher v University of Texas at Austin (affirmative action) and Evenwell v Abbott (one person, one vote); Professor John G. Culhane discussing the current state of abortion cases; Professor Judith L. Ritter discussing various Kansas cases on death penalty sentencing and Montgomery v Louisiana (sentencing of juveniles); Professor Leonard N. Sosnov discussing Luis v US regarding the right to counsel; Professor Michael Goldberg discussing Friedrichs v California Teachers Association regarding unions and free speech; and Professor Kenneth T. Kristl discussing Florida v Georgia & Mississippi v Tennessee regarding water rights.

Please take a look at the finished video which is now on You Tube at

Welcome Back – Classroom Updates Fall 2015

Dear Faculty,

I hope you all had a wonderful and productive summer. Now that fall is here I wanted to welcome everyone back and update you on changes in the computer programs and equipment in the classrooms.

We have not made any significant changes to the classroom equipment technologies this year, but there are a few important software updates, and I wanted to remind everyone how to access the extensive documentation we have created and alert you to some additional resources that are now available.

Detailed instructions for using the classroom technologies are available in the Classroom Technology Guide, which is updated and reprinted each year. A copy of this guide is available online. To find this and other documentation, click on the Documentation menu above. The password for all pages on this site is “widenerlaw”. Under Documentation you will find detailed step-by-step instructions for all of the technologies that we use.  When you click on the menu for documentation, it will open a printable pdf, which you can then save to your computer for quick reference. A shortcut to this training site is

I also use this website to alert the community to various technology updates and changes, so please check the site often for items of interest or ideas for how to do something with technology in the classroom. Under the What’s New menu, you can take a look at older posts as well.

In addition to the documentation and training web site, I have created a new web page for Educational Technology as part of the library services pages on the new Delaware Law web site. This page can be found at . You will find a link to the documentation and training website from that page, as well as a link to reserve the Training Room.

Another new web page for Instructional Media Services is also available in library services, at In addition to providing information about Media Services, this page has a link to all of the classroom equipment and technologies available, contact information for media services, and a link to the newly created Instructional Media Services Request form. A link to the form is found at the left navigation side of the page. It can also be found at Please use this form for all media requests as it allows us to better provide service to you and to track information.

We are in the process of creating another form for you to report any problems that you experience in the classroom, so that we can better identify issues and track solutions in a timely manner. I will post a note to the documentation and training site when this form is available, and will also send another email to the community.

*Touch Screen Display Panels*

Last year we installed new Touch Screen Display Panels in all the classrooms.  When you touch the screen, it automatically turns on the projector and the television screens and selects the classroom computer.  When the computer is booted up, the display will be projected on those devices. You may still need to turn on the computer if it is not already on. Please use the touch screen to turn off the projection system before you leave the classroom.

*Laptop Connection*

For those of you who bring your own laptop, you can find fixed cables in the cubby on each podium. The cubby contains a VGA cable, HDMI cable, Ethernet cable, audio cable, and power receptacle.  This makes it easy to connect your laptop right on the podium without having to bring in extension cords or other devices to connect your laptop to the classroom system.

If you do use the laptop connection, make sure to choose laptop and select HDMI or VGA on the touch screen display. Mac users will need their own VGA display adapter as well.

*Software News*

Turning Technologies, which is our vendor for clicker technology, released an update the first week of the semester. If you plan to use clickers in your class, please make sure to update your Turning Point software prior to creating your presentation. The classrooms have the latest update and it’s always best to use the same software version when creating and displaying your presentation. If you still have Turning Point 2008 on your computer, you will need the newer version of the software, not just the update.

Panopto has also made some significant upgrades to their software recently.  Please make sure to have your Panopto software upgraded prior to making videos this year.  Look for details regarding these upgrades in the 7.29.15 post on the Documentation and Training site linked above.

As always, I am available to provide individual training and assistance at your convenience for any of the technologies available in the classroom. I am also happy to discuss ideas for using technology to accomplish other goals in your teaching. Stop by my office in the library or contact me at or t: 302-477-2118.

I look forward to working with you this year. Have a great semester!


Clickers in the Classroom

Turning Technologies is the manufacturer of Turning Point and the personal response system (clicker) in use at Widener Law.  These portable clicker systems are easily set up and used on any computer that has the Turning Technology software installed (all classroom computers and office computers by request).  Pass a clicker out to each student in class, open the program and your presentation, and pose your question.   Once students answer the question using the ‘clicker’  a chart with the class responses appears on the screen.  Faculty use the clickers to help students recognize assumptions about various topics and then compare those assumptions to their understanding of the same issues after learning about the topic.  Clickers can be used to establish whether a class understands a certain concept before moving on, and can help quickly determine  the direction you might want to go next after obtaining audience feedback.

Clickers are a great way to dispose of simple questions or ideas, and you can either plan ahead which questions to pose (using PowerPoint), or easily pose questions on the fly (using Anywhere Polling).  Clicker technology also provides a means for saving and evaluating the data collected.

Detailed instructions for how to get started using clickers is available here, Create a Clicker Slideshow, or from the Instructional Tools menu above under Assessment Tools and from the Documentation menu.

As of Fall 2015, Delaware Law is using version 4.9. Please verify your version before creating your presentation to make sure that it is created with the latest version of the software.  Contact ITS to have your office software upgraded.

Scheduling Meetings with Doodle

Use Doodle to schedule meetings and stop sorting through email after email trying to figure out when your group can get together.  Doddle helps you simplify scheduling.

Go to and either create an account or not, it is not required.

“Doodle is an online scheduling tool that can be used quickly and easily to find a date and time to meet with multiple people.  First you suggest dates and times for your event participants to choose from, then Doodle creates a polling calendar that can be sent to participants for feedback.  As each participant selects the dates and times from the polling calendar that he or she is free, Doodle aggregates the responses and tells you which option works best for everyone.

Getting everyone on the same page is hard enough with just five other coworkers, let alone fifty new volunteers you may have never met.  Doodle can be a valuable tool for coordinating a large event like volunteer training as well as a small event like a monthly meeting with the board.” (from Doodle’s web site)

There are four basic steps to creating a doodle poll.

  1. Schedule an Event
  2. Propose Times
  3. Choose Settings
  4. Invite Participants (via email)
  5. Invited guests then follow the link you sent and sign up for the date that is best.

You can then log in and see everyone’s response, all on one page, and Doodle will even tell you which time got the most ‘votes’.

For more information and specific instructions on how to create a Doodle, go to the Doodle support center here.

Digital Measures New User Interface Fall 2015

Digital Measures has updated the user interface in the database as of August 2015.  While the new interface is designed to be more intuitive and user friendly by reducing the number of clicks that we make to add/edit or update our entries, it is nice to have a chance to see what they have done.  Digital Measures has posted a very good guided tour of their new interface and I recommend that everyone take a look at their earliest convenience.

Panopto upgrades for the fall 2015 semester

Panopto has made a series of upgrades to the recording software that we use on campus.  Before using Panopto this year, please make sure you upgrade the recorder on your office or home computer.  All faculty are able to download the recorder to their office and home computer to use at their convenience. All classroom computers will have the newest version of Panopto installed.

Some of the new features you will find in Panopto include a sliding bar to adjust volume for the microphone right on the side of the video window.  You are also able now to choose to record in MP4 format directly, if desired.  In addition Panopto has included keyboard shortcuts for starting/stopping and pausing the recording.  This new version also has numerous under the hood improvements to the reliability and performance aspects of the program.  Panopto will prompt you to update your version of the recorder if it determines that your software is out of date.  The current version of the recorder that we are now using is 4.9.

As always I am available to help you with your recordings, along with editing them and helping you add links to quizzes and making them available to your class or other group.  Please give me a call at 302-477-2118 or email me at so that I can show you some of the interesting ways you can use Panopto.

In addition, in the documentation section of this site you will find a number of step by step instructions for using Panopto.

Panopto Upgrade Update

Panopto was successfully upgraded on November 22, 2014. The new upgrade does not require that you download a new recorder, but we recommend that you go ahead and do this as the new version has a few features that we want to take advantage of, in addition to providing various bug fixes and updates. For instructions on downloading the recorder, see the Panopto Quick Start Guide .

The updated version of Panopto no longer requires Silverlight. Panopto is now taking advantage of HTML 5 and Flash for video streaming. For more information on Panopto see the Panopto support website at .

Windows XP and Vista are no longer supported.

I have noticed some clear speed updates, and you now get upload and encoding information without having to refresh your browser.  In addition, it is now recording in 16×9 format, which looks very good.

Let us know if you have any questions or concerns with the new version.

Panopto Upgrade November 22

There will be an upgrade to Panopto on Saturday, November 22. This may take most of the evening and you will want to plan with this in mind. The following is what Panopto has said:

  • Panopto hosted servers will be down on Saturday, November 22, at 8:00pm EDT for up to 3 hours. We expect only a short interruption for finding and viewing sessions during this time, with a longer interruption for processing new sessions.
  • Recorder clients will still be able to record offline and upload later, but there may be brief delays before the recordings are available for viewing.
  • Your Windows clients, Mac clients, and remote recorders will not be required to      upgrade.
  • We will be sending a separate email next week with more information about some of the upcoming changes.

No action should be necessary after the upgrade, but there will be a new recorder available for download. Please check back to see what benefits will be available after the upgrade is completed.