Today I read a very short article in the new EDUCAUSE Review, “Moving Teaching and Learning with Technology from Adoption to Transformation.” Joel L. Hartman suggests that a “systemic” approach to institutional adoption of technologies, rather than the “random acts of progress” that occur haphazardly, may be more likely to fulfill the dream of technology actually transforming education. I’d like to think that we are doing that here with the reorganization of the AECs at Tri-C, that by coordinating our efforts, we will make more progress toward excellence in teaching.
On the other hand, I don’t completely want to stop those “random” experiments with new technologies, because there lies creativity and inspiration. I think we will find a balance of experimentation and systemic transformation.
Yesterday, I read “Exploring Faculty Learning Communities: Building Connections among Teaching, Learning, and Technology”–yes I read past the long title!–from the current issue of the IJTLHE. What inspires me here is the idea that such a community that meets regularly is more likely to go beyond mere introductions to technology to in-depth “considerations of effective pedagogy and critiques of . . . digital tools” (52). The article describes a Using Technology to Enhance Teaching and Learning FLC at Virginia Commonwealth University. I recommend such groups, but I also recommend some different kinds of stand-alone workshops that delve into course design and developing outcomes that can be fulfilled by a technology.