Technology Resource Center Update (3/5 – 3/19)

The most challenging thing about the practicum experience is how often you have to switch perspectives. When I am working on my workshop it is from a much more focused perspective than when I am trying to evaluate the effectiveness of a technology resource center. Just thinking about the variety of issues technology specialists have to address daily can be somewhat intimidating!

Professional Portfolio Update (3/5 – 3/19)

I’m updating my portfolio as I complete assignments. Because I have so many loose ends to tie up, it gives me some sense of accomplishment everytime I can add another completed assessment to my portfolio! I spend at least 30 mins. to an hour daily uploading documents, adding links, adding images, and fine tuning the copy. The thing about websites is you have to effectively communicate your message with very few words. Coming up with those words and strategically placing images can be extremely time consuming!

Faculty Development Workshop Update (3/5 – 3/19)

At this point, I am working on the resources for my online instruction: creating screencasts and presentations. Recordings are generally a challenge for me because I tend to have issues maintaining consistent voice tone throughout an entire presentation. I am in the process now of “tweaking” my scripts which means I repeat them over and over trying to effectively communicate the message using as few words & images as possible. I spend an hour or more daily working on some aspect of this workshop and I still feel like there is so much left for me to do!

Technology Resource Center Evaluation (2/27-3/4)

Comparing technology resource centers has been very interesting. At a community college setting, I found a variety of technology support staff  (training coordinator, instructional technologists, instructional designers, academic systems specialists) each with a very disctinct role. Today I interviewed the Director of the Center for Teaching & Learning at Georgia Perimeter College. She still teaches 1 class each year and says that her personal mission statement is to provide the best service in order to promote the success of the students at Georgia Perimeter College. Key responsibilities of the position includes creating resources to encourage innovative teaching strategies, coordinating and conducting workshops, and faculty development day. Her role also supports the Tutoring Center, Libraries, and the Early Colleges program. Her advice to someone following in her footsteps is to always remember that the mission is bigger than any one person, it’s all about the students!


Faculty Development Workshop Update (2/27-3/4)

Still “tweaking” my lesson plans. I started working on the online instructional tutorial component of my practicum. It has really helped me to narrow my focus and clarify objectives. When you are posting instructions online, you tend to want to be as concise as possible. Going through the process of translating my “face to face” workshop plans to my online tutorial is helping me because I have to choose my words carefully and be very clear about what I expect from students. Not a day goes by that I don’t spend at least an hour reviewing my plans. One of my challenges is to reduce the time committment for the faculty so practically speaking being able to link to online resources will provide additional instruction even for the “face to face” workshop participants.

Feeling Overwhelmed

I am at the point that get to every semester when I wonder if I will be able to complete all the projects! I’m working on a literature review for my Administration of Technology Resources class, a technology infusion presention, as well as juggling all my practicum requirements! I’m definitely in information overload! This weekend in my “spare time,” I’ll start planning a hard earned vacation for when I finish up!!

Professional Portfolio Update (2/20-2/26)

I am not spending as much time right now on updating my portfolio. I’ve spent about an hour this week updating the web pages. I have to finish several more outstanding requirements before I can upload the final artifacts. Any changes I’ve made this week were related to navigation. One of the final requirements of the  instructional technology master’s program is to present the portfolio to faculty & other students therefore I need my navigation to be user friendly so I’m not “bumbling about” trying to find things during my presentation!

Faculty Development Workshop Update (2/20-2/26)

I think of my workshop like a puzzle. The picture is slowly but surely coming together. My past teaching experience was with middle/high schoolers, so it is very different to prepare instruction for adults. Not only adults, but adult “educators.” My workshop is based on effectively using the current learning management system (LMS). The technology resource center and instructional design resource center at the college already have a variety of resources available for the faculty so my ultimate goal is not simply to reinvent the wheel. In order to avoid that, I have to really know my target audience. I spend at least an hour a day “tweaking” the lesson plans. Though there is some aspect of presenting “step by step” instructions, I know there are already alot of good resources that provide that. My objective is to encourage discussion & collaboration  by including various activities designed to increase their motivation to use the tools.

Technology Resource Center Evaluation (2/20-2/26)

My head is spinning trying to keep so many different ideas related to the administration of technology clear in my head! I’ve visited several technology resource centers trying to get a good picture of exactly “how they support their faculty/staff”. Their impact in general has been so far reaching that it is necessary to find the job descriptions of multiple people within the organization(s) in order to make sense of how they are getting the job done. Sometimes it is not easy to see the differences between instructional technology coordinators, training coordinators, instructional technologists, and instructional designers!! One of my practicum requirements involves evaluating a technology resource center, so between running to various locations for interviews and researching services provided, I spend at least an hour a day trying to wrap my mind around all this!