My Favourite Digital Tools

With the NewCardigan GLAM Blog Club theme for July being ‘Digital’, I thought this the perfect opportunity to share with you all some of my favourite (mostly free) digital tools. May of these tools I use for teaching, however they have a wide variety of uses. I will try to categories them in some sort of logical order:

Quizzes, voting and presenting:

These tools are great for interactive sessions. You can gather feedback from the audience and then build on that feedback within your workshop. What does your audience know? What don’t they know? What would they like to know?

  • Quitch (paid app for quizzes)
  • Kahoot! (fun multi-choice quizzes with music and colour)
  • WordClouds (lots more websites to create these online too)
  • Poll Everywhere, Tricider (polls where there is no ‘right’ answer)
  • Zeetings  (for interactive presentations with polls and activities – I haven’t used this one but heard it’s great!)
  • Google Docs and Google Presenter (for collaboration and interactive presentations, audience can ask questions along the way)
  • Survey Monkey, Google Forms (for surveys/feedback or quizzes)
  • Prezi (fancy presentations)
  • Padlet (great for collecting information from audience before or during session)

 

Creating eLearning Content:

Want to make some online content for learning? Something you can embed into an LMS, library guide or other site? Check these out.

  • H5P (one of my all time favourite tools, super easy to create all sorts of interactive activities, templates provided)
  • Adobe Captivate (paid software to make online tutorials, can be quite a steep learning curve)
  • Articulate (paid software, haven’t tried myself but I hear it’s very similar to Captivate)
  • Elucidat (a colleague recommended this as an easier to use alternative to Captivate and Articulate)
  • Alexandria (build online ‘textbook’ type content, looks like this may only be available to Monash University staff unfortunately)
  • OfficeMix (this was an excellent add on to Powerpoint, however it looks like it was just recently integrated in as standard)
  • Lynda.com (paid program, which you can use to learn how to do things yourself! Not really for creation as such..)
  • Twine (amazing tool for gamification and branching logic)
  • Image Maps and also https://www.image-map.net/ (creating hyperlinks within images e.g. site map) 
  • Free music archive (add creative commons music to your content)
  • Pixabay (add creative commons images to your stuff)
  • Animation software: Powtoon, Go Animate (paid) and Voki

 

General design:

Make some posters, social media banners, invitations, flow charts, anything you want!

  • Piktochart (infographics)
  • Canva (simple to use, lots of templates and images)
  • Adobe Illustrator (paid, for more advanced users)
  • Photoshop (paid) / Gimp (free and just as good as photoshop!)
  • Also don’t go past classic MS Paint, I miss it so much on my Mac. PaintBrush for Mac is an option, but it’ll never be the same. Hot tip – Paint makes it super easy to reduce an image size.
  • Inkscape (graphics editor)
  • Pixlr (online photo editor)
  • Draw.io (good for diagrams)

 

Video editing, publishing, and Screen casting:

  • Adobe Premiere (paid, advanced)
  • Camtasia (paid, great software for simple editing and adding effects)
  • iMovie (comes standard on Mac)
  • Windows Movie Maker (so simple to use)
  • Cute Cute Pro (mobile app)
  • Snagit (paid, image/video capture)
  • Jing (screencasting)
  • CamStudio (screen recording)
  • YouTube (publishing)
  • Vimeo (paid, publishing)
  • SlideShare (publishing presentations and slides)
  • EduTV, Kanopy and ClickView (paid subscription services, can take sections of movies and free to air videos for teaching. Not for creating)

 

Other useful stuff:

  • Reference Management Software: apart from the usual Endnote (paid) check out Zotero, Mendely and Citavi.
  • Browzine is an interesting (paid) platform for browsing journals, and is easily integrated into LibGuides.
  • Hemingway Editor and Grammarly are great tools to improve your writing.
  • Trello and Wunderlist are fantastic project management tools.
  • Google Sites, WordPress – make websites!

 

Ok well this list is getting out of hand, and there are so many more great (mostly free) tools out there! Please go ahead and add your favourites in the comments. I hope this post will give you some ideas to explore some new tools to enhance your teaching.

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2 thoughts on “My Favourite Digital Tools

    • That’s great to hear. You’re right, there are almost too many amazing digital tools out there for educators now! If you discover any more you would like to add to the list, or have any feedback when you try some out, please share with us.

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