In March, Desire2Learn acquired the company, Wiggio (http://wiggio.com/). Wiggio creates a product to help students self-organize campus groups. Desire2Learn is working on integrating Wiggio into their Learning Suite, and are aiming to make Wiggio available to all clients in the Fall (although a specific date has not yet been given).
So what exactly is Wiggio and how does it work?
Product Overview from Wiggio: http://youtu.be/7jcsXTu93CU
Once Wiggio is integrated into Desire2Learn, it will be a place for students to create groups outside of the boundaries of specific courses, but still within the Learning Management System (LMS). For example: the Mariners soccer team or Business Students’ Association could create a Wiggio group to help organize their activities. Instructors will also have the power to create groups if they want, and will still be able to use the Desire2Learn Groups tool for group assignments and other classwork related activities.
A Wiggio group allows students to message each other via email, text, voice or video note without having to create group contact lists in external mail providers. They can have fully-online group meetings. There is a shared group calendar and to-do lists, so everyone can easily see what is happening, what needs to be done, and who was supposed to do it. Students will be able to set up polls within the group, as well as create and share documents and spreadsheets, which are stored in the cloud.
Students can be part of many different groups on Wiggio, and this platform allows them to manage their groups from one location with a consistent set of tools.
As Dana Lampert, the founder of Wiggio, stated at the Desire2Learn Users Conference – Wiggio is designed to be easy to use and quick to learn. If even one member of a group struggles to use a tool it is unlikely to be adopted or used for very long.
What is this all going to look like in VIULearn (powered by Desire2Learn)?
The short answer is: we’re not sure yet. The integration is still being worked on by Desire2Learn and Wiggio, but it has been suggested that Wiggio will probably be added to the My Home area. We know students will be able to add other students from their classlists, as well as by email. Wiggio group notifications and calendar do not integrate into the Desire2Learn notifications and Calendar tools yet, but these elements of tighter integration are on the horizon. There is an iOS app available for students, and the Android app is “being worked on”.
The Wiggio environment demonstrated at the Desire2Learn Users Conference in July mimics the “News Feed” environment of social media sites that students are already comfortable in, which should help remove some barriers for use.
In the Centre for Innovation and Excellence in Learning (CIEL), we have heard many student and instructor requests for spaces to collaborate outside of course sites. Wiggio will be a powerful tool to develop collaborative spaces for both short and long term projects.
I’m eagerly anticipating Wiggio’s release on VIULearn, and I hope you are just as excited as I am to test it out! If you want to give Wiggio a try before the integration, it is still free to set up a group on their website here: http://wiggio.com/
For more information on Desire2Learn and Wiggio, please see: