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Research Guides

Why Teach with Manifold?

Manifold is a digital book publishing platform that allows you to upload multiple texts and embed interactive media elements into texts. During Winter quarter, two instructors experimented with Manifold as a replacement for online discussion boards.  Students in the courses used private reading groups to converse about a text using annotation. Private reading groups allow the students and instructor to converse about a text while keeping those conversations private and only viewable to those in the private reading group. Instructors can see all annotations from the private reading group dashboard and can jump to each student’s annotation for viewing.

Course Snapshot: Regina Yung Lee’s Gender & Fandom, Winter 2020

  • 50 undergraduate students 
  • Students annotated an article from an open access journal
  • Project site
  • Libraries workshops with students: 1, introducing Manifold and how to annotate a text using private reading groups
  • Instructor feedback on Manifold in the classroom: “The students' experiences with Manifold indicate that they found it more intuitive for recording and sharing out close readings and critical textual analyses than Canvas discussion boards. Students' ability to engage directly with the text they were citing, adding links to relevant media, and commenting on each others' comments, led to a stronger affinity and familiarity with the texts under study. We ran one trial during class, and another as homework; both produced strong comments on the texts.

In an informal poll, students reported intuitive ease of use (once privacy settings had been clearly explained) and greater connectedness to their colleagues' responses as being Manifold's strongest assets. The TA grading responses in both Canvas and Manifold reported a subjective increase in quality of student comments made on Manifold.”

Course Snapshot: Beatrice Arduini’s Italian Culture & Politics, Winter 2020

  • 26 undergraduate students 
  • Students annotated an excerpt from a public domain version of Dante’s Inferno 
  • Project site
  • Libraries workshops with students: 1, introducing Manifold and how to annotate a text using private reading groups
  • Instructor feedback on Manifold in the classroom: 

“By commenting on passages of Inferno 26 students actively engaged with the text, and the fact that the public domain translation of Dante’s Divine Comedy was different from the one that we used in class lent itself to explore translation issues.”

Additional Guides to Explore

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