Tools for online teaching

This page gives an overview of tools for online teaching sorted by application type.

Communication and web conferencing systems

Which system should I use?

If you have a web conference or online course with less than 200 participants that involves personal data: use Big Blue Button.

If you have a web conference or online course with up to 300 participants (or up to 500 with a separate licence) that involves lots of videos of the participants: use Zoom.

Big Blue Button

Big Blue Button

The Communication, Information, Media Centre (KIM) offers a locally hosted system on the basis of the open source software BigBlueButton (BBB). The system and data are kept in the university’s own Data Centre. It can be used as an application in a web browser and can also be integrated into ILIAS.We recommend using the Chrome browser in order to access all of the available functions.

You can log in using firstname.familyname (WITHOUT @uni-konstanz.de) and your university password.

More information

Chat tool

University of Konstanz chat server

Using the chat function: It is easy to use the chat server without installing any software. When you log in to the university’s cloud server, you simply need to click on the “Anmelden mit Chat” option (log in with chat) in order to load your list of contacts.

DFNconf

Web and video conferencing tool. The German National Research and Education Network (DFN) has massively expanded its capacities and will continue to do so.

Instructions

Zoom

Zoom 

Starting in summer semester 2022, the university will have a campus licence for Zoom.

More information

Test audio and video functionality

Test your audio and video connections. This is helpful, e.g. when using an external loudspeaker, a headset or a webcam.

Film production: And the Oscar goes to...

Screencasts

You can add audio to your PowerPoint presentation and easily create short teaching videos.

Please note: Such teaching videos should last no more than 15 minutes so that you have your audience’s maximum attention.

Here are easy-to-use tools for creating screencasts:

OBS Studio: 

Instructions

OBS instructions (in German) from the Open Science team and explanatory videos from KIM.LR (in German) 

OBS instructions in English from Dr Christian Schmidt in the university’s Department of Biology. Many thanks! You will need to log in using the “My University” icon at the top right of the website first.

Communications and Marketing provides templates for creating screencasts in the university's corporate design.

Please note:  Although OBS recommends *.mkv as the standard setting, we recommend you use *.mp4 instead, since Safari and Firefox browsers cannot open *.mkv files. Alternatively, you can use Handbrake to convert the file before uploading it to the university’s cloud server.

We recommend saving and storing your files on the university’s cloud server. Please note the instructions for integrating the cloud server in ILIAS (tab “collaborative cloud integration”).

Screencast-o-matic:

You can use screencast-o-matic to make your own screencasts easily. Screencast-o-matic instructions from Dagmar Sorg in the university’s Department of Computer Science. Many thanks!

There is also extensive video editing software available for windows: DaVinci (in German).

Tips for Mac users 

You can use the QuickTime Player pre-installed on your device to make audio and screen recordings. Once you open the app, you can click on “File” and then select “New Movie /Audio” or “Screen Recording”.

You can use the pre-installed iMovie app to easily create and edit videos using a Mac/iPad/iPhone device.

Starting with iOS 14, iPhones and iPads can be used to make screencasts: Control Centre settings - add the red app with the circle "screen recording". In the Control Centre (swipe from top to bottom), tap the function to start and end the recording. The videos will be available in the "photos" app.

IMPORTANT: As per General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), no recordings may be made of web conferences!

Technical recommendations (for all departments)

Recommended hardware for producing and editing videos

Create your own (teaching) videos: KIM.MediaBOX

Teaching staff can borrow the KIM.MediaBOX to record their own (teaching) videos.

Lecture recording: teaching film production, lecture recording and streaming

KIM.LR | Lecture Recording + Media Production: We can record your lectures and those held by guest speakers, produce media tailored to your individual needs (educational films, documentaries, event documentaries) and provide streaming services for audio-visual materials across various media.
We are happy to provide advice and support if you are thinking of producing your own media and will walk you through the entire process (idea to finished film).

Contact

Lossless editing of videos (including audio)

Converting video formats

It is often useful to convert videos to different formats and/or file sizes so that all end devices can play them. Video conversion with Handbrake

Collaboration

Cloud

The University of Konstanz's Cloud platform

Project management (Redmine)

For managing projects in the university context, we provide a central service based on the free software Redmine.  Email the project management team

With an Android device, you can alternatively use the OpenRedmine client. 

Polls for scheduling an event

This is best done using Foodle.

Umfragen

Conduct surveys using frag-jetzt

Whiteboard

The web conferencing tools BigBlueButton and Cisco WebEx also contain a digital whiteboard that you can operate using your mouse or trackpad.

Tip: If you have a device with stylus input, e.g. Apple iPads, Samsung Notes and Galaxy Books, Microsoft Surface and Lenovo Yoga Books, you can use the stylus for the whiteboard function.

As long as it meets data protection requirements, we recommend the using the free version of the whiteboard tool "Conceptboard". More information will be available here soon.For data protection reasons, we do not recommend using the "Padlet" and "Miro" tools.

Other tools

How can I make and edit audio recordings?

NEW: The Ocenaudio tool is well-suited to making and editing audio recordings.

We do not recommend using the Audacity tool.

For MacOS and iOS users:

You can download the Garage Band tool from the App Store and use it to make professional audio recordings quickly and easily.

Tip: You can use the QuickTime Player pre-installed on your device to make audio and screen recordings. Once you open the app, you can click on “File” and then select “New Movie /Audio” or “Screen Recording”.

ILIAS platform

The University of Konstanz uses ILIAS which is a top of the line learning platform.

Scan apps

We recommend leading OCR products by Abbyy. You can use AbbyyFinescanner to quickly scan text and convert it to pdf with your phone.

Text-to-speech (TTS)

Articulate Storyline 360 is a good text-to-speech (TTS) tool that you can use in PowerPoint presentations. A free test version is available for use. Instructions for Articulate Storyline 360.

Overview of additional TTS tools for Android devices.

iOS users can use the Speak Screen function on iPads/iPhones in accordance with Apple's terms of use.

Copyright law

Several changes to copyright law came into effect on 1 March 2018. Latest copyright regulations (in German)

Useful external websites

Hochschulforum Digitalisierung

unterricht-digital.info (in German)

digimedien-tools (in German)

Tool-O-Search (in German) helps adult education teachers find the right digital tools for their respective course.

PH Thurgau Lernen trotz Corona (in German)

Online teaching activities page from the Leibniz University Hannover with helpful explanations

eteaching.org (in German) central page with e-learning resources

Lehre Online (in German)

We do not recommend using the Audacity tool.

Tools, rooms and media available on campus

Audio response system (clickers)

We recommend using the ILIAS function "Live Voting". For now, you can also use eduVote until the current campus licence expires.

Projectors

Reserve available classrooms

There are rooms in the library that lecturers can book for courses. If you need instruction on using the equipment in a room, please contact us in good time.

bwLehrpool: Remote access to bwLehrpool PCs

Borrow a device / media equipment

KIM lends out various devices to students and lecturers.

Mobile classroom

The mobile classroom (or: MC for short): Rooms without PC workspaces can be quickly and flexibly equipped with modern IT infrastructure using our mobile classroom system. You can access the internet via eduroam WLAN/Wi-Fi at all times from any mobile workspace.

Borrow a notebook / laptop

Reserve CIP pools

Seminar rooms

Tablet PC