Monday, September 30, 2013

Using the F3 Key to Search Terms of Service

Often, as one of three Tech Coaches in the Georgetown County School District, teachers will ask us via email, about new web tools they've found. What they want to know is, “Hey, I've found this new site, and I think it looks pretty good. I want to use it with my students. What do you think?"

Here are some things to keep in mind when you do find new Web Tools:

1. Is this just a cool tool that can go with an activity...or was the lesson planned, and now you are
    looking for a tool to use to enhance the content?

2. Is the site FREE?

3. Is it sustainable? Meaning, is this a site you can use year after year, and even bank items you've
    created for future use...or is it a trial period site tool that you have limited usage to without being
    required to upgrade to the "Premium" account.

4. Do the Terms of Service meet the requirements for use by students above or below the age of 13?

5. Does using the Web Tool require parental consent?

6. Does the site, and more importantly the use of it, abide by the stipulations of CIPA, COPPA, and
    FERPA Laws for Internet safety of minors?

Items 1 - 3 are easily answered. Numbers 4 - 6 require a little more investigation.  First go to the site, and then find the Terms of Service or Terms of Use (usually at the bottom in fine print). Click on these Terms. Now use the F3 key on the top of your keyboard to bring up a "Find Box." This usually pops up at the top left under the web tool bar. Type in key words and scroll down to help you find the information you need quickly. I like to type in "13", "18", "age", "legally" and "binding."

Watch the video below. I hope this has been helpful.

Keith Brown

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