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ATS Newsletter, Vol.5 - August 2017

New Pedagogies in Action: Flipped SOAR

ATS does more than just help faculty. This past year, ATS worked with Student Affairs to flip summer orientation (SOAR) for incoming freshmen and transfer students. This exciting and critical time becomes a stamina challenge for staff and an information overload for students. Working together closely, ATS and Student Affairs produced a series of videos for multiple modules. By the beginning of August, 4955 students had completed the online modules with over 97% reporting it helped introduce them to the CSULB community.

Traditionally, SOAR is an 8 hour day for students and a 10 hour day for staff. By “flipping” SOAR and putting a lot of the information online, staff can focus on the most important aspects in person while allowing incoming students the opportunity to move through the large volume of other information at their own pace.

In addition to the benefits to staff and students of the flipped SOAR model, ATS tested BeachBoard 2018 for a full summer before we begin the campuswide rollout for Spring 2018. The flipped SOAR model also generates a lot of data Student Affairs and ATS can use for future refinement. We can see specifically which modules caused challenges. We look forward to working with Student Affairs to introduce new features to SOAR and refine the experience before next summer.


Need Help? Visit ATS in person at our temporary location at AS-118

We are available in a variety of locations to help you while we transition back to our AS-120 office. Starting August 14th, we will resume normal hours 8AM to 6PM Monday through Thursday and 8AM to 5PM on Friday just a few feet down the hall in AS-118. And, we will still be available in PH2-116 until early September. We encourage you to come and visit us in our newly renovated AS-120 office suite as soon as we complete our move in early September.

We appreciate your patience as we move staff, computers, phone lines, and other resources back into AS-120. We’re excited about the changes and look forward to sharing them with you. Remember you can always call the technology helpdesk at 562.985.4959 or email if you need immediate technology assistance.

Have a suggestion? Let us know.


Horn Center Hours are changing! Come visit us there.

A student browses a horn center computer

Starting Fall 2017 the Horn Center will be open from 8am to 11pm Monday – Thursday and 8am to 5pm Friday.

Starting this Fall the new hours at the Horn Center will be:

  • Monday - Thursday: 8am - 11pm
  • Friday: 8am - 5pm

For students looking for computer lab access on the weekend, the University Library’s Spidell Center is a fantastic option.

If you need to check out classroom equipment, you’ve now got two choices. Classroom Support Services is expanding its services by adding a new location. Its primary residency will be in the Horn Center, and a secondary location is being introduced in the new AS-120 suite starting in September!


Meet the staff: Afifa Alawi

Afifa Alawi

For the past 16 years, Afifa has been involved in educational technology. Prior to joining the CSU Long Beach ATS team, she worked as a computer technician at El Camino community college. Afifa also tutored high school and college students in mathematics. She has a keen interest in numbers.

Afifa was born in Kabul, Afghanistan. She finished high school, and attended her first year of Engineering college at Kabul University. After migrating to the United States in 2000, she continued her education earning her bachelor’s degree in finance. In 2014, Afifa received her Master’s degree from CSULB in Educational Technology.

Since she grew up in Afghanistan, a war-torn country, she been a passionate peace advocate and educator. Her husband also teaches mathematics. When she is not spending time with her family, Afifa enjoys listening to music, swimming, and watching comedies.


 BeachBoard Tip of the Month:

Lynda Logo

BeachBoard 2018 is just around the corner! Want to get an in-depth preview? has a variety of courses you can take available free of charge through CSULB's Single Sign On (SSO). There are three courses currently available:


ATS Leadership

Shawna Dark, Ph.D. 
Associate Vice President, Academic Technology

Jonathan Blake Huer, MFA 
Director, Academic Technologies and Innovation

Dennis LuPresto, MBA 
Interim Director, Classroom Support and Design

Doug Butler, MBA 
Administrative Support Manager