22 October 2014

Split Screen for Multi-Tasking

Almost a year ago, I wrote a post about Split Screen, as a way of making notes from online reading. This involved having one screen as notes and the other as the source material.

Recently, I have been using it in my role as Project Manager of Global Youth Debates, a Flat Connections project (read more about this here).

In Global Youth Debates, teams from all over the world take part in an asychronous debate about a current issue - this year's theme is Global Peace and Security and the topic is, 'Revolution a Justifiable Means for Global Peace and Security'. Using Voicethread, learners record their arguments in stages; the opposing teams can then listen and respond, recording their opposition in the same place.

Part of my job is to organise the brackets - who argues against whom - in each round. To monitor the progress of each team, I have been using Split Screen as a management tool:
Tracking Debate Progress
On the left is each bracket's Voicethread, and on the right, is my Google Doc, which has team information. I can go through each Voicethread (I do also get notifications when a team has recorded) to listen to the recording and, simultaneously, mark their progress on my management Google Doc.

My next job is to create new brackets for Round 1 proper and again, Split Screen has been really helpful:
Organising New Brackets
On the right are the brackets for the practice round; on the left is my planning for Round 1. Having both screens next to each meant I could ensure that each team debated against a different team of a similar age, and that every team was on a different side of the argument than in the practice round.

I could have completed both these tasks without Split Screen but this would have meant flicking between two windows - this is much quicker and easier.

Split Screen is free from the Chrome Store as Chrome extension.