Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Don’t Do It All At Once: Technology in the Classroom

In the week prior to this Spring Semester, Academic Technology held a series of workshops showcasing a variety of tools, resources, and practices for faculty to consider for this semester or just in the future.  We were impressed by the number of faculty that attended these workshops and surprised by how many of them went to 3 sessions or more.  The workshops went extremely well and our conversations with faculty about their work in the following weeks has been quite rewarding.  

One point that came up worth reiterating is the importance of planned implementation.  There are lots of ways you can use the various resources we have, but we like to encourage a deliberate approach.  Trying to do it all at once can leave yourself and your students overwhelmed.  Instead, it’s better scaffold your technological resources into the classroom, giving you a chance to familiarize yourself with the benefits, limitations, and technical challenges that each piece presents before pulling in something else.  It’s very much like your course text or any assignment you might use in your classroom.  You don’t completely revamp your course from semester to semester; you hold onto things that work and tweak those that didn’t.  

Any time you’re looking to integrate some new program or project that utilizes technology, it’s always important to give yourself sufficient lead time to properly implement it.  As we’ve mentioned elsewhere in this blog, it’s important to properly evaluate just what you want to do when it comes to technology or risk losing your students or yourself.
  • What are some of the ways you've successfully integrated technology into your classroom?
  • What experiences have you had when you went too quickly or tried to implement too much?
  • What do you feel you need in order to be prepared to use a particular technology in the classroom?