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Enhancing student learning is a NOVA goal. TAC supports this goal by assisting faculty and staff in using technology tools to advance teaching and learning. We offer faculty and staff an array of face-to-face workshops, online training courses, hybrid training courses, online tutorials, activities and special events.

We hope you will find the information listed below valuable. We encourage you to attend one of our sessions or events.

Technology Tools

Faculty and staff at NOVA have access to many technology tools. The IT Help Desk, the Extended Learning Institute (ELI), and the Technology Applications Center (TAC) provide college-wide support in addition to campus-based support. Use this handout to discover how to access and use many of the technology tools NOVA provides.

Once you register for classes, you will automatically receive a NOVA e-mail address and access to NOVAConnect (our student information system) and Blackboard. Use the information below to get started using technology at NOVA.

Web 2.0 Tools

All the Web 2.0 tools listed do not require you to download anything to your computer to make them work and, if not free, offer free versions as of the last update to this page. Be sure to read the terms of services carefully before registering with any site.

– A social bookmarking service where you save, share and discover popular bookmarks.
Diigo – Collect, organize and share bookmarks, highlights, notes, screenshots, etc. Special premium educator accounts available.
Webnotes – Collect, organize and share bookmarks, highlights and notes.

Blogger – Free hosted blogs.
Edublogs – Free hosted blogs for students and teachers.
Wordpress – Free hosted blogs.

Collaboration – Collaborative mind maps.
Flockdraw – Collaborative painting and drawing tool.
Zoho – Web-based suite of applications geared towards increasing your productivity and offering easy collaboration.

FotoFlexer – Online image editing tool.
Pixlr – Online image editing tool.

Doodle – Online polling – normally used for scheduling purposes.
SurveyMonkey – Online polling. Free account allows for up to 10 questions and up to 100 responses.

FilePigeon – Send large file (up to 100MB) to any email account. Register to send larger files (up to 1GB) as well as store files online.
Zamzar – Online file converter. Can also create an account for online file storage.

Feed.Informer – Splice RSS feeds together, filter them and display on a web page.
QuickTopic – Free hosted message boards.
SMF for Free – Free hosted discussion forum.

Flickr – Store, sort and share your photos online.
Fotobabble – Photosharing platform that adds your voice to your snapshots.
PhotoFunia – Create collages or add fun effects to your photos. 

Animoto – Create slide shows with your photos, video and music.
Glogster – Express ideas on interactive digital posters with text, images, music and video.
Google Docs – Shared workspace for documents, websites, spreadsheets and presentations.
– Uploaded documents look like a printed publication with animated page flips.
– A canvas instead of a slide deck. Zoom in to emphasize details, zoom out to see the big picture.
SlideShare –Upload and share presentations, documents and professional videos. – Create and share infographics and data visualizations.
Wordle – Word cloud image generator.

Screen/Voice Recorder
Screencast-O-Matic – Online screen recorder.
Screenr – Online screen recorder.
VoiceThreads – Group conversation around images, presentations or video.
Voki – Free service that allows educators to create personalized speaking avatars.

GoAnimate – Create and share animated videos.
Xtranormal – Animated movies of your written script.
YouTube – Upload, share and discover videos.

Social Media
Edmodo – Social learning network for teachers, students and parents.
Facebook – Social media website.
LinkedIn – Professional social media website.
MySpace – Social media website.
Pinterest – Pinboard-styled social photo sharing website.
Room21 – Online social learning platform.
Storify – Storytelling with social networks.
Twitter – Social media website – think abbreviated discussion board.

Wix – Create Flash based websites.

Free Applications and Software

There are many great software applications online that you can download for FREE and use to assist you in your creation of Web-based and/or multimedia-based instructional material. Make sure you carefully read and follow the instructions before attempting to download any of these FREE applications.

  • Audacity – Audio editor.
  • Chrome – Web browser.
  • Core FTP – File transfer program to transfer files to your web space (Windows Only).
  • Gimp – Image editing application.
  • Inkscape – Vector graphics editor.
  • Jing – Take a picture or short narrated video of what you see on your computer monitor.
  • Microsoft Producer – Free PowerPoint plug-in to help convert presentations for the Web.
  • Mozilla Firefox – Web browser.
  • Open Office – Free alternative to Microsoft Office.
  • Picasa – Google's online photo sharing site and editor.
  • RSS Builder ( – Create and publish RSS feeds with this program.
  • Skype– Online phone service.
  • Webinaria – Screen recorder  (Windows Only).
  • Windows Movie Maker – Digital video capturer and editor (Windows Only).

Creative Commons

While everyone should assume that all content on the Web is copyrighted (owned by someone and not reusable), the introduction of Creative Common licensing has created some open content for reuse and repurposing. To search for content that falls under Creative Commons:

  • Log into you Google account.
  • Click on the cog in the top right of the screen.
  • Select Advanced Search options.
  • Scroll down until you find the drop box labeled "usage rights" and select one of the options.

Don't forget to attribute the source!

There are also a number of websites that offer up images for reuse. Make sure to look for and carefully read the terms of use before reusing any of the images.

Free Online Tech Journals

NOVA offers faculty and staff a selection of free subscriptions to/for online journals.