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Texas A&M CVM Launches Innovative Educational Software

Posted June 15, 2015

Screenshot of login screen

COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Texas A&M University today announced the official launch of StepStone, content authoring software that allows educators to create a variety of learning experiences accessible from any Internet-enabled device. StepStone is the creation of The Center for Educational Technologies (CET) within the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM). Born out of a desire to empower instructors to develop e-learning materials more quickly and cost effectively, StepStone utilizes a unique customizable template approach to e-learning.

Built as a web app, StepStone functions across platforms in modern desktop browsers. The content authoring process allows users to map a learning path using an intuitive navigation system in a responsive environment. Users have the flexibility to customize their content, from a single-screen multiple-choice question to a branching, comprehensive, narrative journey. “We specifically designed StepStone with flexibility in mind,” says Dr. Jodi Korich, director of The Center for Educational Technologies. “Doing so gives educators the freedom to create the e-learning content they need in a manner that is most appropriate for their class. For example, we are currently utilizing StepStone to develop case scenarios for some of our medicine courses, which have proven very popular with our students.”

StepStone contains a Media Manager mode to add images, rich text documents, and streaming video to the educational content, as well as a Preview mode, which offers real-time simulation of the learner experience on a variety of devices. Users have the ability to add high-resolution image zooming, hotspot interaction, streaming HD video, and an optional achievement system to their content, using an expanding library of layouts and presentation formats that makes development fast and easy.

Once the content has been entered into the software, StepStone is used to publish a standards-based, SCORM 1.2-compliant, responsive HTML5 learning package. The learning material can be loaded onto any Learning Management System (LMS), and be accessed on an assortment of desktop, tablet, and mobile devices.

StepStone will be made available through The Center for Educational Technologies, with the goal of fostering new collaborations across veterinary education and with other disciplines. Funding for the development of StepStone was provided by the Office of the Dean at the CVM.

“StepStone is a great example of educational innovation happening here at Texas A&M. Now, we have a scalable solution that allows us to rapidly produce e-learning materials to enhance every course in our veterinary program.” says Dean Eleanor Green, the Carl B. King Dean of Veterinary Medicine at the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences Texas A&M University. “Faculty and learners alike will benefit as they are highly engaged in these creative educational experiences.”

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Contact Information: Megan Palsa, mpalsa@cvm.tamu.edu, 979-862-4216, 979-421-3121 (cell)

or

Angela G. Clendenin, aclendenin@cvm.tamu.edu, 979-862-2675, 979-739-5718 (cell)



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