When students find value in technology and can apply that technology in their learning and beyond, they become more actively engaged in the classroom. After having first-year seminar students use Web 2.0 technology, specifically a website creation tool as part of an assignment, they participated in a survey to provide feedback over their engagement in creating a Google Sites® website. Quantitative and qualitative data was collected and analyzed to determine students’ perceptions of their engagement when using website creation tools to complete a modified discussion assignment. Results indicated students were significantly more engaged than the normal population when they used Google Sites® as part of their lesson. Primarily positive feedback was received from the participants which revealed three emerging themes - peer collaboration, attaining new skills, and various expressions of creativity. Based upon the findings, recommendations are presented to support faculty interested in using website creation tools as an assignment to enhance student engagement.

Author's Biographies

JAMIE J. ELS is the Programming Director for the Faculty Center for Innovation at Park University where she teaches first-year seminar and introduction to graduate research. She is also the Assistant Editor of Park University's academic journal, InSight: A Journal of Scholarly Teaching. Her research interests include the scholarship of teaching and learning, educational technology, faculty development, and higher education leadership.

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