Wednesday, April 24, 2013


FTC meeting


Announcements from IT and Instructional Design and eLearning liaisons: 


1.  Scott Cann - MyFiles.  Faculty input on MyFiles sought.  Need volunteers (2).    Project will be exploration of function MyFiles is supposed to provide.  Option of introduction along with Google apps is one possibility.   Contact Scott to volunteer.


Volunteers will not be involved in every meeting (technical level).  Role in testing and identifying features.  Discussions around how the tools would be and could be used.  There will be a discussion about interface with LMS.  The task will involve some interest over the summer.  Charlene, Crystal and Bill S.


2.  Barry  SchaudtBCShare will be turned off soon.  Let people know.  Do not begin new projects.  When wiki and blog features did not exist, Rita used it in the old days.  BCShare allows using outsiders and Groups.  BCShare was built here.  Putting it behind VPN is a possibility, but this would exclude anyone outside BC. 


Charlene suggested IT send out a description.  Survey faculty to find out who and how used.  Social work may be using it.   The Honors Program uses it extensively. 


Originally, BCShare was meant to be a replacement of 



3.  Rita Owens – Learning Management System.  Q.  Michael Connelly – can we announce Canvas is our choice of LMS?  Not as yet,  but will probably be announced on eTeaching Day, May 15.  Vendors have not been told.  Possibly at our May meeting.


Conversion procedures and options with Canvas.  Creating entirely new courses will likely be easier and quicker than moving websites from BBv.  Brown is a model we are likely to follow  – they devoted time to training faculty on Canvas instead of trying to transfer sites and courses.  We may shift to targeting early adopters during the first semester – those eager. 


The issue seems to be training users to make the most of the new LMS or ease of conversion.  Things in Canvas do not reappear as they were in BBv.  The premise is that building new course sites is much easier than BbV.


Question.  Students having trouble with two concurrent systems?  Not an anticipated problem.  


When can we sign up?  Answer.  Watch what you wish for.  


Those in “Sandbox” playing are not automatically going to be first to migrate. 


New courses in the fall should not necessarily start in BBv.  More importantly, new faculty will not be trained in BBv. 


4.  eTeaching Day.  May 15.  Focus is on Mediakron Projects.  Partner schools will be coming in to display uses (Bucknell Engineering, for example).   Morning.  Then a vendor session.  All Mediakron Projects will be “showed off”.  


Gardner Campbell at Virginia Tech, Center for Innovation, will be the speaker.




Bill Stanwood.  Communications Department media lab went down on a recent weekend.   TC Humanities Ken jumped in to solve a problem in 15 minutes.  Kudos.


Sharlene Hesse-Biber – request for a media lab.  New technologies in social research.  Most of work is in Europe and England.  Hackett at U Arizona reports that US is far behind in technology for social research.  Students as a result are also not being trained to do such research.  Sharlene developed a handbook based on interviews with 80 odd people in the field. 


Undergrad research.  Harvard Education used mobile technology to investigate happiness in a population by collecting data from students.   In England everyone in the field seems to be talking about it.  BC sociology department has no interest – growing technology gap in research. 


Michael question – other departments equally concerned.  NSF funding is available.  “Skilling [sic] faculty in new technologies  is something to investigate.


Sharlene.  Not talking about classroom use of technology, but emergent research possibilities.


Rita.  Not only a problem in research, but also teaching.  Even students are reluctant – they would prefer to use traditional means in their education.


Are there particular schools pushing in this direction?  Engineering schools?  Sharlene.  Arizona eliminated departments (Tempe) and explosion of applications occurred. 


Rita.  Our Core Renewal process did not address such issues.   Lynn Johnson points out that some of Core includes innovations such as this in Problems Core Courses.


Sharlene.  This is “end stirring”, using technology merely as an add-on.  Core Plan is not hostile, but technology is not “front and center”.


Michael – this is a faculty development issue that should go to Provost Garza.


Handbook of Emergent Technologies in Social Research.   Oxford U P.  Lead researcher is Hackett at Arizona.  Nano-technologies is another emerging research possibility.


Michael Resler – new hire in German.   Candidates taught mock classes.  Two people.  First wanted no technology, “keep it simple”.  Second person wanted technology and for her nothing worked.  Crashed her entire presentation.  First person got the job.  Moral of the story?


Sharlene – Stokes is itself incomplete.  One screen is not enough.  Holistic perspective needed. 


Nationwide, according to Rite, there are only pockets of innovation. 


Sharlene - “Living Labs” in England and Europe is a non-US example.   Ideas anyone? - Approach ILA or Larry in Research Support with ideas.


Sharlene joined FTC committee to promote this.  Can this be pushed along with the new Core.  ILA may be the answer. 


Clare O’Connor.  Ended the meeting with request for a group photo for newsletter (Spring, 2013 Issue) blurb about FTCs.