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If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative , what would you do?  What would be important and what might it look like?  I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us.  I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them.  Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc?   What should we be teaching them. If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support? ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

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If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative , what would you do?  What would be important and what might it look like?  I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us.  I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them.  Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc?   What should we be teaching them. If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support? -Nick at Longwood University ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative , what would you do?  What would be important and what might it look like?  I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us.  I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them.  Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc?   What should we be teaching them. If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support? -Nick at Longwood University ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
Nick,

Good question.

Here are my two cents on what I have been researching, practicing, and demonstrating to colleges and universities- using technology to make learning more relevant and authentic. I hope it helps.



regards,
Jim



Hi Nicholas.  Technology used appropriately can solve problems and create new opportunities.  So assessment needs to come first.  What problems do your faculty have?  What opportunities would they like to create?  Learn that first.  Once you know, then you'll be better positions to be able to work with faculty as partners.  Together, you can design a sustainable instructional technology program that is tied to real institutional needs and has buy-in from faculty.

     -Allan-

Hi All,
 
Allan - I agree that assessment is an important component - so is frequent communication and management of expectations.
 
Nicholas - You've raised the kinds of questions that faculty are likely thinking, but may not have raised publicly -" Why should they use technology?"
 
It's a darn good question - and should be answered on an ongoing basis, in multiple ways / times and on different channels.
 
Admin, faculty and other  have legitimate concerns and "stakes" in the process, and these should be addressed / acknowledged and supported, otherwise they will manifest in terms of resistance (to change). This could be low participation, behind the scenes griping and impacts on course enrollment (first time, subsequent courses).
 
- Randy
 

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<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Randy Fisher, MA (Fielding)
Learning, Organizational Performance & Business Development
President, iCentro
Co-Founder, Ottawa Learnery

Open to full-time, part-time and consulting opportunities.

+1 613.722.5577 (EST, GMT - 5) - home/office
+1 613.899.0475 (EST, GMT - 5) - cell (seldom on, messages not checked frequently)

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From: The EDUCAUSE Instructional Technologies Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:INSTTECH@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Allan Gyorke
Sent: Tuesday, August 07, 2012 11:06 PM
To: INSTTECH@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Subject: Re: [INSTTECH] Introspection

Hi Nicholas.  Technology used appropriately can solve problems and create new opportunities.  So assessment needs to come first.  What problems do your faculty have?  What opportunities would they like to create?  Learn that first.  Once you know, then you'll be better positions to be able to work with faculty as partners.  Together, you can design a sustainable instructional technology program that is tied to real institutional needs and has buy-in from faculty.

     -Allan-

Hello,

 

+1 for the two posts below. A good place to start, particularly if you want to win people over to your suggestions, if to help make their working day more efficient. Look for the bottlenecks in their day to day lives and speed things up for them or remove those bottlenecks entirely. Do this and they may even champion your future efforts for you.

 

Regards,
Phil

 

From: The EDUCAUSE Instructional Technologies Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:INSTTECH@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Randy Fisher
Sent: Wednesday, August 08, 2012 2:48 AM
To: INSTTECH@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Subject: Re: [INSTTECH] Introspection

 

Hi All,

 

Allan - I agree that assessment is an important component - so is frequent communication and management of expectations.

 

Nicholas - You've raised the kinds of questions that faculty are likely thinking, but may not have raised publicly -" Why should they use technology?"

 

It's a darn good question - and should be answered on an ongoing basis, in multiple ways / times and on different channels.

 

Admin, faculty and other  have legitimate concerns and "stakes" in the process, and these should be addressed / acknowledged and supported, otherwise they will manifest in terms of resistance (to change). This could be low participation, behind the scenes griping and impacts on course enrollment (first time, subsequent courses).

 

- Randy

 

 

________________
Randy Fisher, MA (Fielding)
Learning, Organizational Performance & Business Development
President, iCentro
Co-Founder, Ottawa Learnery

Open to full-time, part-time and consulting opportunities.

+1 613.722.5577 (EST, GMT - 5) - home/office
+1 613.899.0475 (EST, GMT - 5) - cell (seldom on, messages not checked frequently)

Skype: wikirandy
LinkedIn Profile
Wordle

 

 

 

From: The EDUCAUSE Instructional Technologies Constituent Group Listserv [mailto:INSTTECH@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU] On Behalf Of Allan Gyorke
Sent: Tuesday, August 07, 2012 11:06 PM
To: INSTTECH@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU
Subject: Re: [INSTTECH] Introspection

Hi Nicholas.  Technology used appropriately can solve problems and create new opportunities.  So assessment needs to come first.  What problems do your faculty have?  What opportunities would they like to create?  Learn that first.  Once you know, then you'll be better positions to be able to work with faculty as partners.  Together, you can design a sustainable instructional technology program that is tied to real institutional needs and has buy-in from faculty.

     -Allan-

If we're talking about true sustainability, I would also encourage people to look at energy usage, data throughput, and equipment refresh rates. We can't take for granted endless increases in kwh and bandwidth usage. I'm very concerned the "digital divide" is going to start getting worse as the price of electricity and data plans rise, brownouts become more common, and rural areas lag behind metropolitan areas in development of internet access. 

Emily

Hi Nick,

I think the first thing I would do is to meet with faculty focus groups and ask them what they believe they need. Ask them to articulate their frustrations with current Instructional Technologies as well. As far as encouraging faculty to use technology (the why) and empowering them to be thoughtful users, I think hosting faculty showcases is one of the best ways. There are always several faculty members that are early adopters and extremely efficient at using technology. Providing a way for them to get recognition and showcase how they are using technology, will go far in inspiring others to use technology.

Ellen

Ellen Marie Murphy
Director of Online Curriculum
SUNY Empire State College
113 West Ave
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
518-587-2100 Ext: 2961
twitter: ellen_marie



From:        "Langlie, Nicholas" <langlienk@LONGWOOD.EDU>
To:        BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU,
Date:        08/07/2012 09:42 PM
Subject:        [BLEND-ONLINE] Introspection
Sent by:        The EDUCAUSE Blended and Online Learning Constituent Group Listserv <BLEND-ONLINE@LISTSERV.EDUCAUSE.EDU>



If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative , what would you do?  What would be important and what might it look like?  I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us.  I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them.  Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc?  

What should we be teaching them. If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support?

-Nick at Longwood University
**********
Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.

Interesting question, Nick. It will sound a bit flippant, but I can’t resist sharing two of the maxims I have evolved over three decades in adult/continuing/distance/online education. 1) The answer to almost every question in my work is “it depends.” That sounds evasive, but when you can answer “depends on WHAT?” you can identify direction. 2) All structure is local. Administrative structures and org charts evolve for specific local reasons. Understand those reasons and you get a handle on what is purely idiosyncratic and susceptible to change and what is adaptive to local conditions and essential for survival.

 

My own approach to your meta question would be to start with the institutional mission—either the formal published mission statement (though they are often opaque) or the implicit mission that faculty and administrators have in mind when they describe what they do. Having spent most of my career at land-grant institutions, for instance, I know that outreach/service is important in my workplace, even if it sometimes only gets lip service. But that part of the mission gives me a rationale and a solid footing to build on. Other kinds of mission can also provide a good starting point. Perhaps more useful than mission would be whatever the current strategic plan or institutional goals set out. These help you answer the essential question behind every undertaking: “in order to do what?”

 

The other thing I would listen for is the problems/issues everyone in campus is talking about or focusing on. Is it assessment? Advising? Retention? Diversity? Are there specific initiatives your president is advancing? You need to be part of the conversation and contributing to institutional progress. To further round out your understanding of the status quo, you might do a sort of inventory: what technology tools are faculty already using? What is available internally that they are NOT using? Maybe even do your own SWOT analysis of the current situation.

 

THEN I would move on to focus groups or surveys of faculty and following up on those results. You will get further faster if you are swimming WITH the institution’s currents than fighting upstream against them. There can be just as much room to be a change agent within the culture as we assume there is to change the culture itself. And it’s easier to define your progress if you have a very clear understanding of where you are starting from.

 

Peg Wherry

Director of Online and Distance Learning

Extended University Montana State University

128 EPS Building, P. O. Box 173860

Bozeman, MT 59717-3860

Tel (406) 994-6685

Fax (406) 994-7856

margaret.wherry@montana.edu

http://eu.montana.edu

 

First, the approach I suggest for this effort is to focus LESS on answering the "what" question and concentrate more on defining "how" work can/should be done. Invariably, conversations about instructional technology programs gravitate towards suggestions about platforms or hardware that have gained attention or favor. This is a good discussion to have, but it is subordinate to the more sustainable question pertaining to "how". A leader in this discussion should ask stakeholders to imagine how information can flow where it is needed (time, format, location) and then map these optimal pathways to solutions or policies than enable them. This keeps the discussion agnostic to platforms, entrenched habits, personal manipulations, etc. Second, keeping a constant focus on "how things should flow" will provide analysts with a model to determine whether efforts have been successful, including whether the needs analysis was accurate. RE: Ellen Murphy's suggestions - Agreed, that a showcase is a useful strategy. However, I am skeptical about the faculty focus group method if it is "current system" focused. This is partly because, as Henry Ford once said, if you ask people what they wanted in a car, they'd say a faster horse. This is a bit condescending sounding, but essentially what I am saying is that instructors are generally not focused on being technology experts. This doesn't mean instructors are "technology dumb" any more than if you asked me what I preferred in a better auto insurance policy. How the heck should I know? It's not what I do. A focus group strategy ought to be in alignment with the leadership goals: fix the current problem, or imagining an altogether new system. If I were to lead a focus group with faculty on technology use as described below, I would spend 3/4 of the time asking about the narrative of their efforts and where they wish there were opportunities for greater efficiencies - without even mentioning technologies. This would give Ed Tech leaders the ability to offer solutions that address issues as articulated in instructor's own words. This may improve the likelihood of buy-in. - Steve -- Steve Covello Rich Media Specialist 603-513-1346 Skype: steve.granitestate Scheduling: tungle.me/steve.granitestate We¹re moving! As of July 1, 2012 the new address will be: Granite State College, 25 Hall Street Concord, NH 03301
It strikes me that there's an element of Cart Before Horse in the a priori assumptions. The technologist's job should not be to teach faculty how to use technology, but rather, to figure out how to use technology to make their jobs easier, not harder. "Technology" does not appear in faculty's holy trio of Teaching, Research, and Service. Nor is it among the responsibilities of students, which are, more simply, to master their subjects. But willful ignorance of current technologies and avoidance of them in an increasingly technological society is not an intelligent action by either faculty or students. And like all social interaction these days, the interaction between students and their instructors is increasingly technology-mediated; some instructional modes, like Blended and Online Learning, are already completely so. The question is not, "how can we teach faculty to use more technology (and why don't they just do what we know is best for them)"; rather, the responsibility lies with instructional and information technology experts to learn as much as we can about the processes of instruction and learning, and recommend to faculty the most effective and efficient tools to help them accomplish their pedagogical (rather, learning) goals. Only then do we justify the enormous cost of information and instructional technology. We must all also respect a fact of technological life: as technologies develop, they become easier to use--later advances lower the usability threshold Which means, ironically, that someone who spent days learning to make use of an early-stage technology is outstripped by the Johnny-come-latelies who can pick up the later, more user-friendly versions in just a few hours--sometimes minutes. Technologists must be sensitive to the height of the threshold, and be aware that difficult-to-use technologies must have a very high payoff, in pedagogical terms, for them to be worth the effort--but given advances in user-friendliness, the very same technology may become very much worthwhile. So sometimes, what appears to be faculty resistance is instead, just waiting for better usability. Instructional technologists must earn the trust of faculty if we are to be believed when we advise them that NOW is the moment for them to invest their scarcest commodity, time, in learning a new technology. I've never seen any of this expressed in a job description for instructional technologists. Glenn Everett, PhD Pembroke, MA gseverett1@gmail.com 781-293-5857 617-688-2102 http://geverettconsulting.com LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/geverett
> >But willful ignorance of current technologies and avoidance of them in >an increasingly technological society is not an intelligent action by >either faculty or students. Dr. Everett - RE: the comment above - I would be weary of labeling one's non-technology enabled approach as unintelligent. It may be impractical, but not a reflection of low intellectual virtue. Ironically, despite my employment in Ed Tech as a Rich Media Specialist for online learning, I am wholeheartedly the worst online student there could be. I HATE learning online, and prefer a notepad, pen and a human being in front of me to challenge with my ideas or demonstrations. It is by far more efficient and rewarding than any technology-based system, IMO. This approach, however, does not mean I am obstinate to embracing technologies. I have adapted when necessary. But it doesn't mean that I (a) like technologies all the time; (b) they have enhanced my learning experience; and (c) they have made my life easier. If anything, technologies have made me feel more isolated and anchored to composing applications than ever. This attitude does mean I am stupid. The key, I believe, in taking a leadership position in technology integration/implementation is to accept that a certain percentage of your target audience simply will not initially embrace the ideologies that we present, no matter how practical, enabling, and empowering we make them out to be. This has to be respected, but managed according to the organization's goals. It is a strategic decision to force technologies into a system when there will clearly be those who will not embrace it: you will lose some instructors (eventually), or you will be forced to make decisions about the character of your faculty and hire/fire accordingly. (I have seen this occur in the video post-production industry, where a schism formed between those editors who embraced computer-based editing, and other who did not. Those who did not were no less talented, but they lost out on the best jobs the industry could offer). Hopefully, we can present enough incentives, institutional and teaching community support, and rewards to avoid this effort feeling like tyranny. A good first step is to validate all perspectives on the subject. - Steve -- Steve Covello Rich Media Specialist 603-513-1346 Skype: steve.granitestate Scheduling: tungle.me/steve.granitestate We¹re moving! As of July 1, 2012 the new address will be: Granite State College, 25 Hall Street Concord, NH 03301 > >Glenn Everett, PhD >Pembroke, MA >gseverett1@gmail.com >781-293-5857 >617-688-2102 >http://geverettconsulting.com >LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/geverett > > > >
Dear Steve Covello -- It looks like I could have made my position a bit more clear. That "willful ignorance" was too much of a loaded phrase. I am the last to denigrate traditional, face-to-face learning. At its best and most effective, however, it requires small classes and a lot of support--in facilities, residence halls, etc. That's expensive, and I suspect that the portion of the higher education sector which can afford to conduct learning that way is shrinking. Certainly the sector of post-secondary education which is looking for other modes of learning is growing by leaps and bounds. That's become a fact of life, and can't be avoided. I think there are few that would attempt to deny these trends; what I'm saying is that it's not useful to try to ignore them. The task facing the instructional technologist supporting non-F2F learning modes is to help faculty grapple with these new modes and find out which technologies, and which clever uses of technology, best promote learning. Ideally, we're not talking about forcing technology use, but rather, suiting the technology to the learning mode. Even F2F learning these days is heavily technology-dependent. I remember what a delight it was to be able to show short clips of different productions to my Shakespeare classes. The days of "Mark Hopkins on one end of a log and a student on the other" are long past, and there's no sense in yearning for a status quo which never was. I think that more attention could be paid to the future of "faculty work." The next 50 years are not going to look like the last 100, for faculty, and I'm not sure that doctoral programs have caught up with that notion. Certainly in many institutions, new faculty positions are going to require the ability to work in non-traditional, non-F2F modes. Glenn Everett, PhD Pembroke, MA gseverett1@gmail.com 781-293-5857 617-688-2102 LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/geverett Blog: http://gseverett1.wordpress.com/
Message from trentbatson@me.com

Hello, all -- I dont' know that there is a generic answer to the questions.  It's important to know what is already going on:  is there a teaching and learning center? and do they have an interest in technology-enhanced learning?  A faculty development office?  Are there faculty members already using tecnology (there must be)?

Are there practitioners of high-impact practices?  first-year seminar?  undergraduate research?  service learning?  (see Kuh, 2008, High Impact Educational Practices).  Those faculty and staff are the sort who welcome new models of learning, and often especially technology.  

What about the library?  Do they consult with faculty about Web 2.0 resources?  

Addressing your questions, not knowing much about your situation, seems to me initiatlly an anthropological challenge:  where are my informants?  who are my natural collaborators?  what is the easiest existing technology initiative to push?

I usually find that faculty are in fact interested in new ways for learning to occur; they are much less interested in talking about technology (in general, and in my experience).  If facuty members are trying a more complicated learning design -- collaborative, real-world learning -- they may find some technology tools and apps make managing those designs a lot easier, and so would be receptive.  

Best
Trent
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What our jobs should or should not be in regards to training responsibilities is an academic question that I suspect is largely irrelevant to the day-to-day functioning of many Instructional Technologists. Stating that an I.T. can just learn about new technologies to pioneer at an academic institution and then advise faculty members on best usage without a robust training program makes the tacit assumption that the faculty members are savvy enough to learn said technology with a minimum of instruction. How many people here want to raise their hands and say that's the case at their institution? Can we get everyone on the list to chime in and take a percentage? ;) Training, IMHO, should always be factored into an appraisal of whether a new technology should be adopted. I imagine we all do that anyway when we assess one tool or another, but suggesting that it isn't a technologist's job to teach faculty how to use technology sounds like a sentiment that requires a very specific set of circumstances, such as very high faculty technological literacy on campus or a client audience composed entirely of digital natives, in order to be valid. If someone is in that environment, God bless them. They probably get to play with the fun stuff most of the time. :) Quoting G Everett : > It strikes me that there's an element of Cart Before Horse in the a > priori assumptions. The technologist's job should not be to teach > faculty how to use technology, but rather, to figure out how to use > technology to make their jobs easier, not harder. > > "Technology" does not appear in faculty's holy trio of Teaching, > Research, and Service. Nor is it among the responsibilities of > students, which are, more simply, to master their subjects. > > But willful ignorance of current technologies and avoidance of them in > an increasingly technological society is not an intelligent action by > either faculty or students. And like all social interaction these > days, the interaction between students and their instructors is > increasingly technology-mediated; some instructional modes, like > Blended and Online Learning, are already completely so. > > The question is not, "how can we teach faculty to use more technology > (and why don't they just do what we know is best for them)"; rather, > the responsibility lies with instructional and information technology > experts to learn as much as we can about the processes of instruction > and learning, and recommend to faculty the most effective and > efficient tools to help them accomplish their pedagogical (rather, > learning) goals. Only then do we justify the enormous cost of > information and instructional technology. > > We must all also respect a fact of technological life: as technologies > develop, they become easier to use--later advances lower the usability > threshold Which means, ironically, that someone who spent days > learning to make use of an early-stage technology is outstripped by > the Johnny-come-latelies who can pick up the later, more user-friendly > versions in just a few hours--sometimes minutes. Technologists must > be sensitive to the height of the threshold, and be aware that > difficult-to-use technologies must have a very high payoff, in > pedagogical terms, for them to be worth the effort--but given advances > in user-friendliness, the very same technology may become very much > worthwhile. So sometimes, what appears to be faculty resistance is > instead, just waiting for better usability. Instructional > technologists must earn the trust of faculty if we are to be believed > when we advise them that NOW is the moment for them to invest their > scarcest commodity, time, in learning a new technology. > > I've never seen any of this expressed in a job description for > instructional technologists. > > Glenn Everett, PhD > Pembroke, MA > gseverett1@gmail.com > 781-293-5857 > 617-688-2102 > http://geverettconsulting.com > LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/geverett > > > >
Here is a synthesis of the responses I received on Introspection, just to share... Introspection on Why use Technology Let me preface what follows with definition of Instructional Technology that I use for the DEC: “Instructional Technology is the theory and practice of design, development, utilization, management, and evaluation of processes and resources for learning” (developed by the AECT). I like it specifically because it does not mention Technology. After speaking with our President, I found myself intrigued by something she asked me and so, I stretched my fingers to my peers online and asked the following: “If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative, what would you do? What would be important and what might it look like? I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us. I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them. Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc? What should we be teaching them? If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support?” I took the input from peers from many institutions (Australian National U., Simmons College, Assoc. for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning, Educause, Granite State College, Montana State U., SUNY Empire State College, U. of Michigan, Penn. State U., Ross U. and the U. of Wisconsin-La Crosse) and synthesized this information into two areas: Concerns/challenges of faculty and how we as an institution can explore addressing faculty needs. Concerns of faculty or challenges: Very busy. Not enough time in the day. Technology can be complicated to use. Support is available sparingly, not at all, or isn’t relevant to instructional need. "Technology" does not appear in faculty's typical trio of Teaching, Research, and Service. Nor is it among the responsibilities of students, which are, more simply, to master their subjects. Some faculty (a) don’t like tech all the time; (b) technologies don’t always enhance learning experiences; and (c) technologies haven’t made life easier. If anything, technologies have made some feel more isolated and anchored to composing applications than ever. Technology is a buzz word to many people, and any attempts to define or pin down its meaning entirely falter under the multiple forms that technology takes. How we as an institution can explore addressing faculty needs: Be part of the conversation and contribute to institutional progress to be grounded. Instructional technology has nothing to do with technology really. Communicate this to faculty and seek to understand challenges. Look for bottlenecks in the day-to-day lives of faculty and suggest ways to remove them. Help faculty accomplish their goals faster and easier, where possible. Introduce technology when it can solve problems or create new opportunities. Ask faculty what new opportunities they would like to have in their roles; once this need is articulated, work toward developing partnerships to work together to create sustainable and useful initiatives. Meet with faculty and survey them to understand what they need. Ask Faculty to articulate their frustrations, complications and processes that act as barriers to their teaching. Also ask them the same about technology. To empower faculty to be thoughtful users of technology, recognize/showcase examples of present faculty using technology in unique ways, in ways that save time and effort, ways that there is a current passion for, i.e., your early adopters. Think about the mission of the University and the individual missions of faculty; try to align this when coming up with new ideas and initiatives to support them. Ask faculty what tools they use presently. What is available that faculty are not using? Get them to say why and validate that their input (important). Do a SWOT analysis of present technology situation. Perhaps do focus groups of faculty to discuss, once SWOT is in a draft form to refine. Perhaps, as part of the SWOT, examine common faculty tasks, and put each one into one of the following categories: Time consuming, but necessary Non-time consuming, but necessary Time consuming, but unnecessary Non-time consuming, but unnecessary A goal of IT should be to eliminate, automate, or mediate as many of these time consuming tasks as possible for the faculty members while still retaining the overall quality of the education at Longwood. We need to think about how work can get done and should get done. Once we identify this, we can see what tools and resources might be effective. Software and hardware have no value without purpose. Ask our faculty and staff to imagine how information can flow to where it is needed (think about time, format, location) and then map out these optimal pathways to solutions and/or policies to enable them. This keeps the discussion agnostic to platforms, entrenched habits, personal manipulations, etc. Then, keeping a constant focus on "how things should flow" will provide analysts with a model to determine whether efforts have been successful, including whether the needs analysis was accurate. Ask faculty for the narrative of their efforts and where they wish there were opportunities for greater efficiencies - without even mentioning technologies. This would give leaders the ability to offer solutions that address issues as articulated in instructor's own words. This may improve the likelihood of buy-in. Responsibility lies with instructional and information technology experts to learn as much as we can about the processes of instruction and learning, and recommend to faculty the most effective and efficient tools to help them accomplish their pedagogical (learning) goals. Only then do we justify the enormous cost of information and instructional technology, when it is absolutely necessary (otherwise, we should explore free, like OER, Google for Education, blogs, apps, etc). Difficult-to-use technologies must have a very high payoff, in pedagogical terms, for them to be worth the effort--but given advances in user-friendliness, the very same technology may become very much worthwhile. So sometimes, what appears to be faculty resistance is instead, just waiting for better usability. Instructional technologists must earn the trust of faculty if we are to be believed when we advise them that NOW is the moment for them to invest their scarcest commodity, time, in learning a new technology. A key in taking a leadership position in technology integration/implementation is to accept that a certain percentage of your target audience simply will not initially embrace the ideologies that we present, no matter how practical, enabling, and empowering we make them out to be. This has to be respected, but managed according to the organization's goals. If faculty members are trying a more complicated learning design -- collaborative, real-world learning -- they may find some technology tools and apps make managing those designs a lot easier, and so would be receptive to providing input and receiving input. Look at what the university considers challenges with its instructional program and see where technology could help. For example, the instructional technology could be targeted at courses showing poor student satisfaction. Create a culture that sees technology as a way of amplifying human effort to create more free time and therefore more value. Invest less in infrastructure and more in research and development; more in mobile and adaptable learning paradigms. Hire a mentally flexible staff with varying abilities and promote innovation among its ranks. Make technology a systematic treatment, not just a Band-aid. Technology should amplify and complement existing skills. A goal here is to research and find free, or relatively inexpensive resources that do not require high up front infrastructure or maintenance fees that can then be deployed across the institution. That way, when something inevitably changes, no one is particularly averse to changing things because of the monetary penalties that would arise from upgrading or switching platforms. This field needs people who understand the intersections, the overlaps between content, pedagogy, and technology, and see these gray areas as fruitful places in which to make connections. A successful organization employs people who are adept at learning quickly, but who forget equally as expediently if a technological tool is no longer useful. A large and difficult part in creating an IT initiative that is both adaptable and sustainable involves creating a consumer base that needs something that you are providing. At an institution like Longwood, part of that solution involves working to align the technology experience for students, staff, and faculty. The technology used to collaborate at work needs to mirror the type of technology mediated collaboration of both school and play. As a result, stakeholders no longer see technology as something added or tacked on to the end of an assignment, but rather see it as how things get done here, or a way to work smarter and not harder. I’m not sure that up until this point anyone has given consideration to the holistic experience of technology at Longwood, looked at how all these pieces fit together and work in unison, and examined what value could be gained by aligning them. Technology has been applied like Band-aids, as a reactive prescription to satisfy the requirements of a digital age, but this perspective is inherently limiting in its application, especially over a long trajectory. In conclusion, we should continue to focus on personalization with faculty to help make their lives easier. If the technology can help, great. If not, we don’t use or recommend it. We must ask faculty what their problems are with teaching, learning and instruction and seek to find solutions for these concerns. The focus is not technology; it is about making their lives more enriched to serve our students. Longwood needs to use it’s money wisely, so moving more toward Open Educational Resources and versatile technologies is big plus, particle those that allow us to add “the five C’s to the three R’s (reading, writing and arithmetic). The five C’s are: creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, content and context. “Content is no longer the static and highly protected object that it once was,” “Shift Ed” states. “The possibilities for accessing, reusing, remixing and altering content are now infinite.” Context deals with relating what’s being learned in the classroom to the real world.” (http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/article.cfm?ID=34108&back=archives). --Nick : ) ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
Here is a synthesis of the responses I received on Introspection, just to share... Introspection on Why use Technology Let me preface what follows with definition of Instructional Technology that I use for the DEC: “Instructional Technology is the theory and practice of design, development, utilization, management, and evaluation of processes and resources for learning” (developed by the AECT). I like it specifically because it does not mention Technology. After speaking with our President, I found myself intrigued by something she asked me and so, I stretched my fingers to my peers online and asked the following: “If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative, what would you do? What would be important and what might it look like? I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us. I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them. Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc? What should we be teaching them? If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support?” I took the input from peers from many institutions (Australian National U., Simmons College, Assoc. for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning, Educause, Granite State College, Montana State U., SUNY Empire State College, U. of Michigan, Penn. State U., Ross U. and the U. of Wisconsin-La Crosse) and synthesized this information into two areas: Concerns/challenges of faculty and how we as an institution can explore addressing faculty needs. Concerns of faculty or challenges: Very busy. Not enough time in the day. Technology can be complicated to use. Support is available sparingly, not at all, or isn’t relevant to instructional need. "Technology" does not appear in faculty's typical trio of Teaching, Research, and Service. Nor is it among the responsibilities of students, which are, more simply, to master their subjects. Some faculty (a) don’t like tech all the time; (b) technologies don’t always enhance learning experiences; and (c) technologies haven’t made life easier. If anything, technologies have made some feel more isolated and anchored to composing applications than ever. Technology is a buzz word to many people, and any attempts to define or pin down its meaning entirely falter under the multiple forms that technology takes. How we as an institution can explore addressing faculty needs: Be part of the conversation and contribute to institutional progress to be grounded. Instructional technology has nothing to do with technology really. Communicate this to faculty and seek to understand challenges. Look for bottlenecks in the day-to-day lives of faculty and suggest ways to remove them. Help faculty accomplish their goals faster and easier, where possible. Introduce technology when it can solve problems or create new opportunities. Ask faculty what new opportunities they would like to have in their roles; once this need is articulated, work toward developing partnerships to work together to create sustainable and useful initiatives. Meet with faculty and survey them to understand what they need. Ask Faculty to articulate their frustrations, complications and processes that act as barriers to their teaching. Also ask them the same about technology. To empower faculty to be thoughtful users of technology, recognize/showcase examples of present faculty using technology in unique ways, in ways that save time and effort, ways that there is a current passion for, i.e., your early adopters. Think about the mission of the University and the individual missions of faculty; try to align this when coming up with new ideas and initiatives to support them. Ask faculty what tools they use presently. What is available that faculty are not using? Get them to say why and validate that their input (important). Do a SWOT analysis of present technology situation. Perhaps do focus groups of faculty to discuss, once SWOT is in a draft form to refine. Perhaps, as part of the SWOT, examine common faculty tasks, and put each one into one of the following categories: Time consuming, but necessary Non-time consuming, but necessary Time consuming, but unnecessary Non-time consuming, but unnecessary A goal of IT should be to eliminate, automate, or mediate as many of these time consuming tasks as possible for the faculty members while still retaining the overall quality of the education at Longwood. We need to think about how work can get done and should get done. Once we identify this, we can see what tools and resources might be effective. Software and hardware have no value without purpose. Ask our faculty and staff to imagine how information can flow to where it is needed (think about time, format, location) and then map out these optimal pathways to solutions and/or policies to enable them. This keeps the discussion agnostic to platforms, entrenched habits, personal manipulations, etc. Then, keeping a constant focus on "how things should flow" will provide analysts with a model to determine whether efforts have been successful, including whether the needs analysis was accurate. Ask faculty for the narrative of their efforts and where they wish there were opportunities for greater efficiencies - without even mentioning technologies. This would give leaders the ability to offer solutions that address issues as articulated in instructor's own words. This may improve the likelihood of buy-in. Responsibility lies with instructional and information technology experts to learn as much as we can about the processes of instruction and learning, and recommend to faculty the most effective and efficient tools to help them accomplish their pedagogical (learning) goals. Only then do we justify the enormous cost of information and instructional technology, when it is absolutely necessary (otherwise, we should explore free, like OER, Google for Education, blogs, apps, etc). Difficult-to-use technologies must have a very high payoff, in pedagogical terms, for them to be worth the effort--but given advances in user-friendliness, the very same technology may become very much worthwhile. So sometimes, what appears to be faculty resistance is instead, just waiting for better usability. Instructional technologists must earn the trust of faculty if we are to be believed when we advise them that NOW is the moment for them to invest their scarcest commodity, time, in learning a new technology. A key in taking a leadership position in technology integration/implementation is to accept that a certain percentage of your target audience simply will not initially embrace the ideologies that we present, no matter how practical, enabling, and empowering we make them out to be. This has to be respected, but managed according to the organization's goals. If faculty members are trying a more complicated learning design -- collaborative, real-world learning -- they may find some technology tools and apps make managing those designs a lot easier, and so would be receptive to providing input and receiving input. Look at what the university considers challenges with its instructional program and see where technology could help. For example, the instructional technology could be targeted at courses showing poor student satisfaction. Create a culture that sees technology as a way of amplifying human effort to create more free time and therefore more value. Invest less in infrastructure and more in research and development; more in mobile and adaptable learning paradigms. Hire a mentally flexible staff with varying abilities and promote innovation among its ranks. Make technology a systematic treatment, not just a Band-aid. Technology should amplify and complement existing skills. A goal here is to research and find free, or relatively inexpensive resources that do not require high up front infrastructure or maintenance fees that can then be deployed across the institution. That way, when something inevitably changes, no one is particularly averse to changing things because of the monetary penalties that would arise from upgrading or switching platforms. This field needs people who understand the intersections, the overlaps between content, pedagogy, and technology, and see these gray areas as fruitful places in which to make connections. A successful organization employs people who are adept at learning quickly, but who forget equally as expediently if a technological tool is no longer useful. A large and difficult part in creating an IT initiative that is both adaptable and sustainable involves creating a consumer base that needs something that you are providing. At an institution like Longwood, part of that solution involves working to align the technology experience for students, staff, and faculty. The technology used to collaborate at work needs to mirror the type of technology mediated collaboration of both school and play. As a result, stakeholders no longer see technology as something added or tacked on to the end of an assignment, but rather see it as how things get done here, or a way to work smarter and not harder. I’m not sure that up until this point anyone has given consideration to the holistic experience of technology at Longwood, looked at how all these pieces fit together and work in unison, and examined what value could be gained by aligning them. Technology has been applied like Band-aids, as a reactive prescription to satisfy the requirements of a digital age, but this perspective is inherently limiting in its application, especially over a long trajectory. In conclusion, we should continue to focus on personalization with faculty to help make their lives easier. If the technology can help, great. If not, we don’t use or recommend it. We must ask faculty what their problems are with teaching, learning and instruction and seek to find solutions for these concerns. The focus is not technology; it is about making their lives more enriched to serve our students. Longwood needs to use it’s money wisely, so moving more toward Open Educational Resources and versatile technologies is big plus, particle those that allow us to add “the five C’s to the three R’s (reading, writing and arithmetic). The five C’s are: creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, content and context. “Content is no longer the static and highly protected object that it once was,” “Shift Ed” states. “The possibilities for accessing, reusing, remixing and altering content are now infinite.” Context deals with relating what’s being learned in the classroom to the real world.” (http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/article.cfm?ID=34108&back=archives). --Nick : ) ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
Here is a synthesis of the responses I received on Introspection, just to share... Introspection on Why use Technology Let me preface what follows with definition of Instructional Technology that I use for the DEC: “Instructional Technology is the theory and practice of design, development, utilization, management, and evaluation of processes and resources for learning” (developed by the AECT). I like it specifically because it does not mention Technology. After speaking with our President, I found myself intrigued by something she asked me and so, I stretched my fingers to my peers online and asked the following: “If you were an outside consultant tasked with helping a University to create a sustainable and adaptable Instructional Technology initiative, what would you do? What would be important and what might it look like? I know this is a little meta, but I thought it would be a good exercise for all of us. I am trying to thoughtfully consider what faculty really need and what we should do to support them. Why should they use technology and how can we, as institutions, empower them to be thoughtful users of technology to save time, money, effort and learn to use it on their own to make life easier, freeing time for higher order thinking, applied learning, discussion group work, etc? What should we be teaching them? If it isn't about technology, then what specifically do we need to teach the faculty we support?” I took the input from peers from many institutions (Australian National U., Simmons College, Assoc. for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning, Educause, Granite State College, Montana State U., SUNY Empire State College, U. of Michigan, Penn. State U., Ross U. and the U. of Wisconsin-La Crosse) and synthesized this information into two areas: Concerns/challenges of faculty and how we as an institution can explore addressing faculty needs. Concerns of faculty or challenges: Very busy. Not enough time in the day. Technology can be complicated to use. Support is available sparingly, not at all, or isn’t relevant to instructional need. "Technology" does not appear in faculty's typical trio of Teaching, Research, and Service. Nor is it among the responsibilities of students, which are, more simply, to master their subjects. Some faculty (a) don’t like tech all the time; (b) technologies don’t always enhance learning experiences; and (c) technologies haven’t made life easier. If anything, technologies have made some feel more isolated and anchored to composing applications than ever. Technology is a buzz word to many people, and any attempts to define or pin down its meaning entirely falter under the multiple forms that technology takes. How we as an institution can explore addressing faculty needs: Be part of the conversation and contribute to institutional progress to be grounded. Instructional technology has nothing to do with technology really. Communicate this to faculty and seek to understand challenges. Look for bottlenecks in the day-to-day lives of faculty and suggest ways to remove them. Help faculty accomplish their goals faster and easier, where possible. Introduce technology when it can solve problems or create new opportunities. Ask faculty what new opportunities they would like to have in their roles; once this need is articulated, work toward developing partnerships to work together to create sustainable and useful initiatives. Meet with faculty and survey them to understand what they need. Ask Faculty to articulate their frustrations, complications and processes that act as barriers to their teaching. Also ask them the same about technology. To empower faculty to be thoughtful users of technology, recognize/showcase examples of present faculty using technology in unique ways, in ways that save time and effort, ways that there is a current passion for, i.e., your early adopters. Think about the mission of the University and the individual missions of faculty; try to align this when coming up with new ideas and initiatives to support them. Ask faculty what tools they use presently. What is available that faculty are not using? Get them to say why and validate that their input (important). Do a SWOT analysis of present technology situation. Perhaps do focus groups of faculty to discuss, once SWOT is in a draft form to refine. Perhaps, as part of the SWOT, examine common faculty tasks, and put each one into one of the following categories: Time consuming, but necessary Non-time consuming, but necessary Time consuming, but unnecessary Non-time consuming, but unnecessary A goal of IT should be to eliminate, automate, or mediate as many of these time consuming tasks as possible for the faculty members while still retaining the overall quality of the education at Longwood. We need to think about how work can get done and should get done. Once we identify this, we can see what tools and resources might be effective. Software and hardware have no value without purpose. Ask our faculty and staff to imagine how information can flow to where it is needed (think about time, format, location) and then map out these optimal pathways to solutions and/or policies to enable them. This keeps the discussion agnostic to platforms, entrenched habits, personal manipulations, etc. Then, keeping a constant focus on "how things should flow" will provide analysts with a model to determine whether efforts have been successful, including whether the needs analysis was accurate. Ask faculty for the narrative of their efforts and where they wish there were opportunities for greater efficiencies - without even mentioning technologies. This would give leaders the ability to offer solutions that address issues as articulated in instructor's own words. This may improve the likelihood of buy-in. Responsibility lies with instructional and information technology experts to learn as much as we can about the processes of instruction and learning, and recommend to faculty the most effective and efficient tools to help them accomplish their pedagogical (learning) goals. Only then do we justify the enormous cost of information and instructional technology, when it is absolutely necessary (otherwise, we should explore free, like OER, Google for Education, blogs, apps, etc). Difficult-to-use technologies must have a very high payoff, in pedagogical terms, for them to be worth the effort--but given advances in user-friendliness, the very same technology may become very much worthwhile. So sometimes, what appears to be faculty resistance is instead, just waiting for better usability. Instructional technologists must earn the trust of faculty if we are to be believed when we advise them that NOW is the moment for them to invest their scarcest commodity, time, in learning a new technology. A key in taking a leadership position in technology integration/implementation is to accept that a certain percentage of your target audience simply will not initially embrace the ideologies that we present, no matter how practical, enabling, and empowering we make them out to be. This has to be respected, but managed according to the organization's goals. If faculty members are trying a more complicated learning design -- collaborative, real-world learning -- they may find some technology tools and apps make managing those designs a lot easier, and so would be receptive to providing input and receiving input. Look at what the university considers challenges with its instructional program and see where technology could help. For example, the instructional technology could be targeted at courses showing poor student satisfaction. Create a culture that sees technology as a way of amplifying human effort to create more free time and therefore more value. Invest less in infrastructure and more in research and development; more in mobile and adaptable learning paradigms. Hire a mentally flexible staff with varying abilities and promote innovation among its ranks. Make technology a systematic treatment, not just a Band-aid. Technology should amplify and complement existing skills. A goal here is to research and find free, or relatively inexpensive resources that do not require high up front infrastructure or maintenance fees that can then be deployed across the institution. That way, when something inevitably changes, no one is particularly averse to changing things because of the monetary penalties that would arise from upgrading or switching platforms. This field needs people who understand the intersections, the overlaps between content, pedagogy, and technology, and see these gray areas as fruitful places in which to make connections. A successful organization employs people who are adept at learning quickly, but who forget equally as expediently if a technological tool is no longer useful. A large and difficult part in creating an IT initiative that is both adaptable and sustainable involves creating a consumer base that needs something that you are providing. At an institution like Longwood, part of that solution involves working to align the technology experience for students, staff, and faculty. The technology used to collaborate at work needs to mirror the type of technology mediated collaboration of both school and play. As a result, stakeholders no longer see technology as something added or tacked on to the end of an assignment, but rather see it as how things get done here, or a way to work smarter and not harder. I’m not sure that up until this point anyone has given consideration to the holistic experience of technology at Longwood, looked at how all these pieces fit together and work in unison, and examined what value could be gained by aligning them. Technology has been applied like Band-aids, as a reactive prescription to satisfy the requirements of a digital age, but this perspective is inherently limiting in its application, especially over a long trajectory. In conclusion, we should continue to focus on personalization with faculty to help make their lives easier. If the technology can help, great. If not, we don’t use or recommend it. We must ask faculty what their problems are with teaching, learning and instruction and seek to find solutions for these concerns. The focus is not technology; it is about making their lives more enriched to serve our students. Longwood needs to use it’s money wisely, so moving more toward Open Educational Resources and versatile technologies is big plus, particle those that allow us to add “the five C’s to the three R’s (reading, writing and arithmetic). The five C’s are: creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, content and context. “Content is no longer the static and highly protected object that it once was,” “Shift Ed” states. “The possibilities for accessing, reusing, remixing and altering content are now infinite.” Context deals with relating what’s being learned in the classroom to the real world.” (http://www.martinsvillebulletin.com/article.cfm?ID=34108&back=archives). --Nick : ) ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at http://www.educause.edu/groups/.
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