What does that have to do with technology?

By Steven Bishop

I am getting better at answering the question, “What you are talking about is important, but what does that have to do with technology?” This question is probably more implied, and probably more personal and internal, than one I am asked by others directly. My job title is Online Learning Designer, a role that involves:

  • supporting faculty with their use of the college’s Learning Management System (LMS)
  • collaborating with educational and informational technology staff to ensure currency and quality of online learning environments
  • instructing faculty in the design and production of online learning objects
  • providing “exceptional client-centered service on a consistent basis to all stakeholder groups”

Depending on what one thinks technology means, there is lots of room for interpretation of the above functions. Because the environment is technological (e.g. digital, computer-based, online), there can be an assumption that the primary work is within prescribed technologies. Ursula Franklin, defines a prescriptive technology as that which “Each step is carried out by a separate worker, or group of workers, who need to be familiar only with the skills of performing that one step. This is what is normally meant by division of labour.” (Franklin, 1990)

Franklin also identifies holistic technology as “…associated with the notion of craft” and involving decisions that can only be made while the work is in process, by the artisan themselves. Holistic technology is endangered in our modern, compliance-based, and prescriptive technological environment, where one misplaced character in a line of code causes failure, and where algorithms decide what information we are fed on our smart phones and computers.

There are a number of reasons why I think a holistic approach to Educational Technology is needed, Continue reading “What does that have to do with technology?”

Douglas College’s new EdMedia Program for faculty and staff

Media creation (videos for class instruction or promotional activities, podcasts, etc.) is everywhere these days. Think YouTube, Lynda.com, the Khan Academy. This is the new way of acquiring knowledge and delivering your message to large audiences.                                                         

Creating video and audio recordings can serve to humanize the online environment, convey deeper meaning, and provide a catalyst for social and instructional presence. Some of the uses for educational media include:

  • short instructional/promotional videos or audio recordings
  • just-in-time tutorials
  • collaborative peer assignments
  • formative assessments
  • digital storytelling projects

At Douglas College, we just rolled out our new EdMedia Program, which,  once completed, will provide participants with the skills to create their own educational media designed for their specific purpose, whether that means producing a video or launching a podcast, and ultimately, reaching your desired audience. Graduates leave with a deeper understanding of the creative process and assets that can be used in the classroom, in online courses, or for promotional purposes.

Now for the details. The program consists of six workshops held over a six-week period. Enrollment is limited to ensure a meaningful hands-on experience. Participants have the opportunity to work in recording/editing studios alongside like-minded colleagues and creative professionals from Academic Technology Services. A certificate will be awarded to participants who complete the following courses; however, courses can be taken individually and accumulate towards the certificate.

  1. Recording Foundations: Pre-production and planning
    Thursday, May 25, NW MousePad (room N3142) 9:00-11:00 am
  2. Video Recording Techniques: Lights, camera, action
    Monday, May 29, Studio (room N3272V) 9:00am-12:00pm
  3. Guerrilla Filmmaking: Portable device techniques
    Thursday, June 8, Dance studio (room N3260) 9:00am-12:00pm
  4. Camtasia Desktop Editing: Producing professional-looking videos
    Monday, June 12, NW MousePad (room N3142) 9:00am-12:00pm
  5. Audio Recording: Editing with Audacity/Podcasting
    Thursday, June 15, Studio (room N3272V) 9:00am-12:00pm
  6. Showcase and Next Steps. Next steps to integrate recordings into courses (e.g., Blackboard tools, WordPress sites)
    Monday, June 19, NW MousePad (room N3142) 9:00am-12:00pm

If you’re a member of the DC community and are interested in registering, click here.