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The Instructional Media Lab: Help for Instructors

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Come to the Instructional Media Lab and get help with your instructional technology needs from some of the most knowledgeable (and patient) people you will ever meet.

Hours and Contact Information

Appointments are available in up to 2-hour blocks most weekdays. Drop-ins are welcome on a space-available basis. For more information, including a faculty events calendar, see Teaching with Technology: Services for Instructors.

We can help you to:

  • Explore technologies: If you have a new tool in mind, we will help you learn the basics and figure out how best to use it to meet your goals. If you have a goal in mind, but aren't sure if there is a tool that can help, we'll review the options with you and see if there is something out there that can help.
  • Build confidence: Not everyone loves fiddling with technology. If you get stuck, or aren't sure how best to use a tool, we're here to help. Our goal is to build your confidence and get you to a place where you can use a tool and have it help, not hinder, your work as a teacher.
  • Discover emerging technologies: Learn about the latest tools being explored for teaching. We'll help you review what the tool can do and if it will help you meet your goals.

Services and Facilities

  • Assistance with course sites: Get introduced to Moodle for an easy-to-make course site that can include sophisticated communications tools, or use the Blogs at UMass Amherst service to build a public course website that is easy to create and update.
  • Audience Response Systems (ARS): Instructors can learn to use i>clicker, the audience response system supported by UMass Amherst IT, to engage students and promote interaction in large classes.
  • Media capture and editing: Learn how to capture and edit videos. Take advantage of our sensitive microphones and cameras to capture audio and video for instructional uses. 
  • Lecture capture: Learn how to use the Echo360 system for recording lectures in equipped classrooms or use Echo360 Personal Capture or Camtasia to record tutorials or screencasts of lectures. 
  • File conversions: Learn how to convert Word and PowerPoint documents to PDF, save images in Web-friendly formats, and optimize video for posting online.
  • Scanning images & text: Learn how to get the best results when scanning images and text documents, without creating unwieldy, gargantuan files. Scanners available: slide scanner (35mm), flatbed, and sheet-fed document scanner (8.5x11) with character recognition for creating accessible course materials.