On April 24th we had a celebration in Franz Hall – Holy Cross Lounge. The celebration was to mark the completion of another year of the Academic Technology Roundtable. We celebrated the work of our ATR fellows and the ATS team that supports their work. Each year the ATR Fellows step outside their comfort zones to integrate technology into their courses and classrooms. This year, like the previous, we had many fun projects. Some of this years projects used technology for the first time, in what was historically technology free zones. Below is the list of the projects and brief descriptions. Thank you to everyone that has supported the ATR and continues to support our project and our faculty.
ATR Fellow: Alice Gates | Assistant Professor | Social Work
Project Title: Integrating technology into the social work classroom
Until very recently, my classroom was considered a technology free zone. In developing and implementing this project, my goal was to introduce technology in two of my classes through the use of web-based presentation software (NearPod) and digital stories. In my intro class, I continue to experiment with NearPod, and I’ve found that it’s helpful in keeping students engaged in real time through instant polls and quizzes. I have also found it useful in conducting web-based simulations in class (e.g., Playspent—a simulation designed to demonstrate the precariousness of low-income families in the U.S.). NearPod has also allowed me to cut down on handouts: instead of printing tables or graphs, students will open the webpage (as directed by my presentation), and we can walk through the data together. In my social welfare policy class, teams of 4-5 students have prepared video shorts analyzing four contemporary social policies: the Homeless Bill of Rights; the DREAM Act; the Farm Bill (2014) and SNAP; and Trans* inclusive policies at the local and state level. Students present[ed] their shorts and discussed the process of learning digital media skils at Founders’ Day (2014).
ATR Fellow: Gwynn Klobes | Director, Professional Development | Pamplin School of Business
Project Title: Enhancing ePortfolios in the School of Business
This project seeks to build functionality into the assignment option in Moodle to connect Mahara to Moodle. This new plugin creates an assignment type in Moodle so students can submit their Mahara ePortfolio to the assignment from within Moodle. The Pamplin School of Business project is to use the new integration to create a class for each of the advisor’s advisees. By doing so, faculty will be able to create an assignment in Moodle to have the students upload their Mahara ePortfolio so that they can use it for their professional advising. The hope is to have it ready for production for the school year 2014-15.
ATR Fellows: Jennette Lovejoy (Assistant Professor) & Vail Fletcher (Assistant Professor) | Com Studies
Project Title: Using Social Media Applications in Higher Education: A Mixed Method Comparative Examination of Students’ Learning, Engagement, and Community Building
This project seeks to elucidate the successes, failures, tensions, and challenges of committing to curricula that strongly emphasizes online discourse in a familiar way, yet new context (i.e., for academic purposes instead of social purposes). Although online discourse will not replace typical classroom discourse, (and, in fact, might be used in the classroom), we aim to push the boundaries and expectations of how it may effectively supplement, or tap into, a new layer (or depth) of learning, engagement, and community within the classroom environment. In essence, we are proposing to extend the traditional classroom “face time” by creating a way for students to actively contribute to course content and each other’s learning within and beyond the classroom. Because digital interaction at some level is routine and habitual for our students, it is our hope that by shaping it into an academic discourse as well, a unique layer will be added to the quality of their education, while also contributing to the skill set that will be expected of them in the workplace.
ATR Fellow: Karen Eifler | Professor of Education | Co-Director, Garaventa Center
In 2013-2014, I received significant support from ATR to ramp up the online presence of two enterprises on campus that I serve as a leader: the Garaventa Center for Catholic intellectual Life and American Culture being one, The Teaching and Learning Collaborative being the other. Drawing heavily on the expertise of Sam Williams and Maria Erb, we have a robust website developed for the Garaventa Center: wordpress.up.edu/garaventa. There we host three different podcast series, which have garnered over 20,000 downloads since we launched in September. We are heard wherever in the world there are Holy Cross communities, as well as throughout the Portland Archdiocese. We’ve been able to turn two visiting scholars’ presentations into podcasts, more than quintupling the audience their original talks would have had.
The Teaching & Learning Collaborative website, wordpress.up.edu/tl, has functioned as a repository for brief, peer-led in-service formation on topics ranging from internationalization to Think-Pair-Share techniques for enhancing classroom engagement of students. These are delivered via video vignettes for the length of time it takes a professor to drink a cup of coffee. The traffic on the TL website has been gratifying and we will continue to seek ways to deploy the content, such as incorporating direct links into the Monday and Wednesday Pilot Announcement Digests and UPBeat.
ATR Fellow: Kathleen Regan | Professor of Spanish | Chair, CISGO
Project Title: Digital Storytelling
For Academic year 2013 – 2014, I proposed to create materials that would help me develop a method to assign Digital Storytelling projects to students in Advanced Spanish classes. Integrating digital technology into language/culture learning builds reading, writing, speaking and comprehension skills in Spanish in a creative and engaging way. Areas I wanted to address included interactive reading assignments; interactive activities to test students’ comprehension; opportunities to practice narration, description and summary skills as related to storytelling in Spanish. In fall 2013 I used Spanish 303 class (Introduction to Literary Analysis and Film) as the digital storytelling lab.
ATR Fellow: Sally Hood | Associate Professor | School of Education
Project Title: Enhancing Language Immersion Educator Performance with Interactive E-Learning Professional Development. A collaboration with Stacey Alonso, Director of Aprende con Amigos
Despite rapid growth in language immersion education, current professional development opportunities in immersion education are expensive, only available in a few cities, and require time away from the teacher’s classroom. We are developing an e-learning professional development (PD) training module on Word Press for Spanish language immersion teachers in grades K-5. Currently we are videotaping K-5 Spanish immersion and English as a Second Language teachers implementing oral language development activities in their classrooms. The videotaping includes brief interviews with each teacher regarding the lesson that was videotaped. The videos show students talking with each other in a second language!
ATR Fellow: Maximilian Schlosshauer | Assistant Professor | Department of Physics
Project Title: A computer interface for the upper-division physics laboratory
This project introduces computer interfacing for our four upper-division physics laboratories (Modern Physics Lab, Optics Lab, Electronics Lab, Advanced Lab). Implementation is anticipated to enhance students’ ability to acquire and analyze experimental data; enhance students’ understanding of the experiments; enable new experiments; and allow students to simulate experimental outcomes before the experiments are physically carried out. We anticipate significantly improved learning outcomes. Using the ATR grant, we have already purchased and installed software and hardware interface cards, and two of our physics students are currently helping with the implementation.
ATR Fellow: Mary Oakes | Simulation Program Manager, Instructor| School of Nursing
Project Title: Blended Learning in Nursing
This project aims to introduce the concept of “blended learning” to the Nursing Course, Pathophysiology (NSG 313). The goal of this project is to provide a flexible approach to teaching and learning which provides the learner with various methods of content delivery. Classroom time will be spent in application of concepts reviewed prior to classroom time (“flipping the classroom”). Using a larger variety of delivery methods, students will take in new concepts more deeply. Instruction methods will change in that the “lecture” will be provided prior to class. The student will be expected to read the teacher-created lecture based on the course textbook and participate in online forum discussion. The classroom will be used for application of content, discussing case scenarios and conducting student-lead discussions of pre-determined questions. With these changes, it is anticipated there will be increased student engagement, increased internalization of new concepts that will transfer to other nursing courses, and improved student satisfaction with the course. A post-course survey will be conducted to determine achievement of these outcomes.
ATR Fellow: Phyllis Egby | Assistant Professor| School of Education
Project Title: Stimulating Student Engagement in Non-Major Content Areas
This project will be designed to provide instructional supports for increasing student engagement in non-major content areas. The goal is to have an online resource for faculty to utilize as instructional inquiries arise. The project will be a “bank of strategies” which can be updated in an ongoing basis. Ultimately, there will be faculty from various disciplines who can contribute to the bank of strategies. Each module will have a brief narrative and then a video related to the selected strategy. For example, a lecture module will have one or more videos of a faculty member doing a lecture. Having the modules online and readily available for faculty to use at their convenience will provide an accessible resource. It could even be used as a resource for New Faculty, and could possibly be part of the training process.
The Academic Technology Roundtable is a project of Academic Technology Services. The initial funding, and continued financial support, provided by James B. Ravelli, Vice President for University Operations. For more information about the ATR project please contact Samuel Williams, Director of Academic Technology Services, at: firstname.lastname@example.org.