Enhancing understanding through technology
By making Adobe Creative Cloud available to students, UNC-Chapel Hill encourages them to experiment, learn new skills, and find solutions to problems themselves. Adobe Creative Cloud apps use similar interfaces and operations, which allows students to pick up new apps with greater ease.
“For faculty, standardizing on Adobe Creative Cloud is very helpful,” says Taylor. “I know that all of my students are using the same familiar software, so I spend less time explaining technical details and more time focusing on instruction.”
Faculty that use Adobe Creative Cloud are able to bring new layers of understanding to lessons. “Students traditionally study things that someone else has produced and deliver analytic responses to that work,” says Daniel Anderson, Director, Digital Innovation Lab and Director, Composition, Rhetoric, and Digital Literacy at UNC-Chapel Hill. “Working with Adobe Creative Cloud allows us to disrupt that traditional classroom experience by recasting students in the role of creators. It increases students’ engagement with material and allows them to approach subjects from different angles, enhancing their understanding.”
In a poetry course, Anderson challenges students to interpret an existing poem through a video. Students use Creative Cloud apps such as Adobe Photoshop CC, Premiere Pro CC, and After Effects CC to edit text, images, and sound into a video of the poem. Students lift words from the page, break them down into pieces, and play with the pacing so that viewers can understand the poem. In doing so, students are encouraged to critically analyze text and discover new sides of the poem they might not have discovered through reading alone. Students producing these video assignments are more engaged with the work and gain a deeper understanding of the subject.
“Students upload projects to Adobe Portfolio and Behance where they can be shared with family, friends, and even future employers,” says Anderson. “In this way, Adobe Creative Cloud helps create an internal motivation in students beyond just a motivation for a grade. Students want to create something unique and polished, something that they can be proud of.”
UNC-Chapel Hill recent graduate Brent Comstock noticed that other universities provided students with access to Creative Cloud and how those students were communicating and collaborating in new digital ways. While he was a student at UNC-Chapel Hill, he polled students on their interest in making Creative Cloud available on campus. With a positive response across the student body, Comstock worked with UNC-Chapel Hill administration through his role as ITS Student Body Representative to bring Creative Cloud for enterprise on campus and make it available to students. He worked closely with student groups and IT leaders to help bring the Creative Cloud initiative to life. Comstock saw firsthand how deploying Adobe Creative Cloud sparked creative curiosity in students.
“For me, the exciting thing has been the adoption rate of Adobe Creative Cloud in non-traditional areas,” says Comstock. “I’ve seen finance students using Adobe Photoshop CC to add visuals to reports and business students using Adobe Spark for presentations. Students are seeing what other people can accomplish with Adobe Creative Cloud, and they’re sharing tips and exploring new tools to stand out. Students are collaborating outside of the classroom and expanding their creativity, which will help UNC-Chapel Hill students as they start out in their careers.”