By Anthony Orttel
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According to Robb Carothers, Technology Integration and Support Supervisor for BSU, Lynda.com offers video lessons on the most popular software titles and success skills.
Lynda.com is a very hands-on learning tool. “If you’re like me, you learn by doing,” said Carothers. Lynda allows students to watch and follow along with training sessions at their own pace. Many of the courses offer downloadable exercise files. These are the same documents or projects that the presenter is using in their video, so users can exercise their skills with the same materials they are seeing in the demo.
According to Brian Jambor, BSUs’ Educational Technologist, since Lynda.com went live on August 25th, 668 user accounts have been activated, and 14,564 videos have been watched for a combined total of 977 hours.
Carothers stated that he often consults Lynda.com when he becomes stuck or has forgotten how to do something within a particular software. He likes that he can just log in to Lynda.com and be a search away from someone walking him through the solution. With the mobile apps (iOS and Android), anyone can download videos at school, and watch them later without needing to use his or her data plan.
“I think it’s something that if people take advantage of, it could be extremely useful,” said BSU junior Samuel Moore. “There is a lot of useful information and a lot of potential to become familiar with services and websites that we have never had access to before.” Students are not the only ones who benefit from Lynda.com.
“There are many faculty members who are very enthusiastic about incorporating Lynda.com lessons into their classes,” said Carothers. He would not be surprised if an instructor made lessons on Lynda.com part of the coursework.
Carothers encourages faculty to incorporate Lynda.com into thier classes, and suggests that faculty members let their students know what software titles they will be expected to be familiar with. “[Faculty members] could post links in their D2L shells to the fundamental courses on Lynda, so students could arrive prepared for class, rather than spend time teaching the software.”
Lynda.com has a lot of benefits—one of the biggest is that it is free to BSU students. According to Carothers, BSU was able to reduce the individual license price from $375.00, down to $6.00 per student. In total, Lynda.com cost BSU $24,000, and it came out of the student tech fees.
“We are watching usage statistics for Lynda.com, and will approach the renewal of the service on a year-to-year basis,” said Carothers.
Carothers does not believe Lynda.com will replace actual classroom instruction, but will serve more as a tool to reinforce what students already know.“I think it allows students to become more confident, and to ask more challenging questions in class,” said Carothers.
Lynda.com is conveniently located on the MyBSU website, under the resource panel. After students click it, it takes less than five minutes to create an account. From there, the possibilities are endless.