First Annual Technology for Teaching Institute

October
1998
Ric Matthews,

The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges and the @ONE Training Project cosponsored the first annual Technology for Teaching Institute June 15-19, 1998, at California State University, Monterey Bay. One hundred community college faculty members from around the state attended. The participants ranged from absolute beginners to those interested in learning the skills needed to put courses online.

The Technology for Teaching Institute was the result of a resolution passed in Spring 1996 in response to request for training by the body. The funding for the Institute was provided by seed money from the Senate and the @One project, and the Telecommunications and Technology Infrastructure Program from the Chancellor's Office built in a multi-million dollar appropriation to the colleges for faculty technology training. Most colleges funded faculty participants using these sources of money or staff development funds.

The Institute kicked off with a general session featuring a presentation on instructional design, followed by participants choosing to follow one of four tracks. These tracks met three times daily for hands-on instruction. The four tracks included (1) beginning, which used word processing software, PowerPoint, and Excel, (2) multimedia, which used scanning technology, PhotoShop, Author-Ware, and Director, (3) WEB authoring, which used PageMill and Netscape, and (4) an online group, which used various WEB authoring tools. A "sugar social" was held each afternoon, which allowed participants to relax and network, and meals were served cafeteria-style. During the evenings an open lab was provided for individual instruction and practice.

The facilities at Monterey Bay allowed individual hands-on training opportunities, as well as technology support for videoconferencing. The keynote speaker for the Institute was Ian Jukes, an educational futurist. He broadcast to the group from British Columbia using a video feed. Jukes spoke of using technology as a tool, not as an ends, within an educational setting. As a tool, he emphasized that technology can do marvelous things, as long as it is used correctly. He reminded the group that our students are arriving with high skills and even higher expectations in the areas of technology, and faculty will be required to adjust to these changes. Unfortunately, the video feed was lost after ten minutes and Mr. Jukes was unable to reconnect, a fact that further emphasized that technology is as yet imperfect and that faculty must be prepared for anything.

The Technology for Training Institute was in part made possible because of many vendor relationships developed by the Senate. Metacreations was a premier partner, donating and selling to us at highly reduced prices two items: (1) SHOW, which is a scaled-down version of the presentation software, PowerPoint, and (2) SOAP, a scaled-down version of PhotoShop. Both of these programs are very powerful and serve the majority of needs someone might have without requiring him or her to learn the more complicated and powerful original versions. Metacreations also donated software which will be used for training in future Institutes. Other vendors, including Iconceptual, CBT Systems, Archipelago, and NETg, made presentations and demonstrations to the participants.

In addition, Macromedia and PacBell donated the services of trainers. PacBell provided training in videoconferencing and in its educational web training materials. Macromedia provided training in Director, and donated software and text materials which were raffled off to participants attending its workshops. Macromedia also demonstrated some of its newer offerings including Dreamweaver (a web authoring tool) and Firewire (a media tool for the WEB).

Overall, the first Technology for Teaching Institute was a success, and the Senate and the @One Training Project plan additional Institutes in the future. The @ONE project is funded by a grant from the State Chancellor's Office, and its goal is to coordinate technology training. The project, which is coordinated by DeAnza College, is a consortium of ten colleges throughout the state which work to provide technical assistance and training to faculty and staff in various areas of technology. For more information, access @ONE's web site at www.one.fhda.edu. There you will find a staff development link, a calendar of events, a technology planning room, a news feature, and other related information. You will also be able to find out about future Technology for Training Institutes.

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