Maximum Illustrator Effects

I attended last year’s Adobe MAX conference which took place in Los Angeles (October 4–8, 2014). Adobe MAX is an annual conference bringing together professional people in the graphics and video arts. Adobe makes applications such as Photoshop (for photos), Illustrator (for graphics), InDesign (for print), and Premiere Pro (for video); all popular design industry standards. Last year’s conference showcased Adobe’s latest Creative Cloud applications and the first 2014 version updates. I took 13 sessions (or classes) concentrating on or related to graphic design and illustration. I went there to learn something new and get inspired, which happened! Selecting items…

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Get Your Students More Involved

Ask students to get engaged in the learning process and they respond: perhaps not with enthusiasm (at least initially) but certainly with results. When active learning techniques are designed and implemented in line with evidence-based practices, they promote deeper engagement with course content and better retention of course material. The challenge for instructors is to incorporate activities which are appropriate, effective, and don’t require a great deal of time to design and implement. Incorporating active learning strategies into your classroom doesn’t mean an end to lecture. Consider breaking your class into fifteen or twenty minute chunks, and using some of…

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Are You Looking to Engage Your Students in an Online Discussion? Consider Piazza!

Online discussion forums offer several advantages over face-to-face classroom interactions.  Shy or self-conscious students are more willing to express their thoughts online.  Everyone in the class can participate.  Students can absorb and interpret perspectives shared online at their own pace and schedule.  Discussion posts tend to be more thoughtful and reflective.  Discussion posts can be revisited later. CourseWeb, Pitt’s implementation of the Blackboard Learn course management system, includes Blackboard’s built-in discussion forum tool.  Many Pitt courses use these tools to foster student-to-student and student-instructor interactions. Effective with the May 2015 Blackboard Learn upgrade, a new discussion tool is also available…

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