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Communication and Collaboration

The broad charge to this Task Force is to identify campus needs for communication and collaboration services and to identify tools and practices to support those needs (click on the Task Force Charge link in the left column for the full description). This is a project blog - the task force will post formal and informal updates here and looks forward to your comments on these posts. Feel free to scroll down for history, search for your topic of interest, or just comment to say what you would like to see discussed.

  •  Top 10 Issues from Email survey

    Monday, Feb. 27, 2012

    Last year a survey was sent out to the community asking what features were important and frequently used in collaboration tools, particularly email and calendaring.   Each question/feature had to parts.

    1. How frequently did people use that feature.
    2. How important did they feel that it be available

    The results were organized by various communities including

    • Global - combining of communities
    • Faculty/Staff - both groups combined
    • Student - u/g and grad responses
    • Faculty Only - just faculty responses
    • Staff Only - just staff responses

    For each constituency we extracted the top 10-12 questions for that group, or combined group, in the hope of seeing what the "most important" and the "most used" features were.  For example, a question with an "x" by it for a particular group means that question was one of the top 10 in importance, or top 10 in usage.  A question with an "x" in all columns means it made to top 10 list for all the groups. GW Survey Questions.pdf

  •  Next Steps and Town Hall Recap 2/22 11:30-12:30

    Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012

     What do we do now?

    The rubric created from prior town halls is available here. We appreciate any comments you have on the blog -- or join us one more time - next Wed 2/22 11:30 to 12:30 in LC 205. Please come to provide comments about how you see the offerings matching to the rubric. The Task Force will then be meeting from 1pm-3pm to begin organizing our suggestions to the Provost and President. 


    We are at the stage where we have gathered a huge amount of information and need to move to making a decision. Thank you for all your help. 

  •  Packed House for Microsoft Town Hall

    Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012


    Another great turn out for the Microsoft Town Hall. Thank you for taking the time to participating in this important process.

    Some useful links if you would like to follow up:

    Training materials

    Basics of Office365

    More on the Use of Office 365


  •  Packed House for Google Town Hall

    Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2012

     Google Apps for Education PPT

    Wonderful turnout for the first town hall. Great set of questions. Feel free to look at the rubric we created based on earlier town hall conversations. Your comments are welcomed at the bottom of that post.

    We also linked to the material Google mentioned about training and a sample Google Site.

    The Microsoft Town Hall is this Thursday, LC 205, 1:30pm to 3:00pm. We'd appreciate your RSVP via this link

     Google Apps for Education PPTAudience

    Photo credit: Pedro Hernandez-Ramos

  •  Some Training/Info on Google Apps for Ed

    Monday, Feb. 13, 2012

     Here is a compilation of background on "going Google"

  •  Sample Google Site for a Team Project

    Monday, Feb. 13, 2012

    I wrote this post and created the below Google Site as an example for my students:

  •  TODAY: Open Forum with Google

    Monday, Feb. 13, 2012

    We are hosting Google from 1:30 to 3pm in Lab 205 in the Learning Commons (Microsoft, same time/same place Thur).

    Come when you can. Ask all the questions you want.
    This session follows a 3.5 deep-dive demo with the Task Force. We have asked the vendors to walk through the scenarios listed in this rubric.

  •  Rubric for Vendor Evaluations

    Monday, Feb. 13, 2012

    Many thanks to UC Berkeley for making their rubric public. Most of the technical issues  (bottom section) are from their work.

    The Scenarios were built from the Town Hall meeting and task force discussions. Thank you for your help.

    A. Offline Editing
    Ease of Use
    B. Faculty—for research, teaching, and service—, administrators, staff, and students need to work in distributed groups on a regular basis. Collaborations involving people with different roles (e.g., faculty and students, faculty and administrators, administrators with external constituents like Trustees) require any SCU-provided system to allow for flexibility while remaining secure and confidential (when needed).
    Ease of Use
    C. A faculty member involved in research with students needs to be able to track multiple projects simultaneously, each involving different groups of students (though some students may be in more than project) and at times also external partners/collaborators with whom all group documents and functionality needs to be shared on an equal basis. The same situation applies to an administrator tasked with setting up a search committee requiring participation from faculty from multiple departments, administrators, students, and external participants. Students working on a group project in a course face similar challenges.
    Ease of Use
    D. All groups will need access to a common project space that has a user-customizable “dashboard”/portal to share files (some of them very large, gigabytes), be able to set up audio and video conferences with multiple participants within that project space, have access to all individual as well as to a group calendar, have an online group whiteboard for brainstorming, be able to see who’s online at any given time, and have access to project management resources such as timelines, activity checks, and workflow (particularly for manager’s approvals). All documents can be edited by the group, and the system has version control to both keep copies of previous versions and allow visibility of each participant’s contributions. The latter case applies, for example, to faculty who need to evaluate each team member’s contributions to a group class or research project, to the administrator who needs to demonstrate due process, and so on.
    Ease of Use
    E. The system allows a faculty member, team leader, or “group owner” to easily assemble a mailing list of all group members, and emails can also be accessed within the workspace created (e.g., though an applet or widget). Group members have ways to manage how they receive emails and can set up rules for short-term filing and for archiving.   
    Ease of Use
    F. I sit down at my desk (home or on-campus) and log into the private network (even on a wired connection). A portal/homepage opens showing my email in-box, documents that have been recently edited, a dashboard showing various project progress, the University news feed, and a snippet of my calendar. I see that our Task Force report is due and click into that workspace. From inside the workspace I see that several questions have been raised around one of the Task Force documents so I begin working on it  -- and pleasantly discover that my colleague is working on another section of the document at the same time.  We realize that we need a perspective from a student, ideally in the Engineering school -- I jump to the University Facebook and see a senior engineering student who is currently on-line. She answers our question and we’re done. At lunch I click on the Adobe Lodge menu and send an IM to a friend asking them to meet me. My work is seamless and I don’t sign-in again for the rest of the day
    Ease of Use
    G. Create a systematic way of dealing with the retention of permanent borne digital content in the systems we now have (except to print them up?). I don’t mean “archiving” or backing up to disk; I mean storing and filing in an intentional, retrievable and organized fashion. Need to cover historically permanent digital records; records such as the records of this task force, calendars and email of key administrators, shared institutional or departmental documents that may never find their way to paper, etc. This will have implications particularly as we migrate content to new systems. May involved “projects” as entities and the ability to move to a searchable, but archived (non-editable) form. What are the best practices?
    Ease of Use
    H. Distribution List Mail:   I’m on quite a few lists so a rule examines all incoming mail and routes various list messages to various folders that I can review at my convenience.
    Ease of Use
    I. Personalized email to a listserve/group:   I need to send a nicely formatted (html) email to individuals who are part of a group. The list of individuals already exists, so I do not need to retype them. Members of the group could be affiliates, non-affiliates, or both. The emails should have a personalized salutation: Dear “Bob”, and  data: your final grade in the class is an “A”.
    Ease of Use
    J. Project Group:  Monitor all email from members of an active project and route to a folder where that can all be aggregated.
    Ease of Use
    K. Auto forwarding:  watch for messages on a particular topic, from a particular source or domain, and forward them on to another email account I use.   Modify the subject line with an additional keyword so when received by the other system, it can categorize that accordingly.
    Ease of Use
    L. Highlighting:   More than a few times I’ve overlooked the messages reminding me about timesheet approvals.  Create a rule to watch for those messages and when they arrive, highlight the subject in red so it stands out in my inbox.
    Ease of Use
    M. Manage existing box:  At times I need to manage my store of messages.  I will create a rule to identify some class of messages, perhaps by date, perhaps by subject, perhaps by source (or some combination of these) and apply the rule to all or some portion of my messages in my inbox, or perhaps even across existing folders.   They rule identifies messages meeting the criteria, and applies some sort of disposition to them.
    Ease of Use
    N. Email/Calendar
    Integration w Collaboration Tools
    Ease of Tools Development
    User Familiarity
    On Premise Integration
    Mobile Integration
    Security & Privacy
    Choice of Access
    Functionality & Features
    O. Secruity & Privacy
    Acceptable Use Policy
    Non-consensual Access to End-User Data
    Location of Data
    Encryption of Email at Rest
    P. Contractual
    Data Transfer upon Termination
    Data Management & Transfer
    Account Suspension
    Notification on Access
    Limitation of Liability
    Service Level Agreements
  •  Open Forums w Google & Microsoft

    Monday, Feb. 6, 2012

    The task force is preparing for the deep demos with Google and Microsoft on the mornings of Feb 13 and Feb 16. The demos are built on the scenarios you helped us with in the earlier Town Hall. We are taping these demos (thank you to all involved!) and will have video segments available on-line ASAP.

    Open Forums with Vendors

    The afternoons of Feb 13 & 16 are open forums with the vendors -- Lab 205 in the Learning Commons:

    -Feb 13 from 1:30-3pm Google
    -Feb 16 from 1:30-3pm Microsoft

    Come when you can. Ask all the questions you want.
    I know many people are interested in the actual migration process that will transition us from our current system to the next. We have been assured that for both vendors there are a variety of options -- but SCU will have to make the decision about how to proceed. We'll need to evaluate whether a third-party does it or we do it in-house. 
    Looking forward to seeing you at the Open Forums.