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CampusWide Implementation of WebCT Vista at East Georgia College

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All courses became a part of the program. ... Do Administrative Evaluation Using WebCT. Do Student Evaluations of Instruction on WebCT ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: CampusWide Implementation of WebCT Vista at East Georgia College


1
Campus-Wide Implementation of WebCT Vista at
East Georgia College
  • Dr. Tim Goodman, VPAA Mr. David Strickland, IR
  • East Georgia College

145 PM 300 PM Wednesday, July 16, 2003 San
Diego, California
2
Abstract
This session deals with the implementation of
WebCT Vista at a small, rural two-year college on
a timetable of three months using a
specially-designed template. Items covered will
include a history and goals of the project,
faculty and student response to the mandated
implementation, successes and non-successes, and
future project plans.
Track Planning e-Learning Strategies for
Institutional Change
3
Vista at East Georgia College
  • History and Goals
  • Stages of Implementation
  • Faculty Response
  • Student Response
  • Successes
  • Non-Successes
  • Future Plans

4
History and Goals
5
Background
  • Beginning Spring semester of 2003 East Georgia
    College launched WebCT-VISTA campus wide. All
    courses became a part of the program.
  • This formative evaluation was conducted to
    monitor the progress of the implementation
    project.

6
Time Line
  • October 2002 Contact With USG
  • WebCT Representatives Met With EGC Committee
  • November 4 Got Ball Rolling
  • November 20-21 Training of Faculty
  • December 6 Set Expectations for Faculty
  • December 12 WebCT on System Server
  • December 16 Designer Training
  • January 6 Classes Began
  • February - Designer Training Pt 2
  • August 2003 Fall Work Conference Refresher
    Training
  • October 2002 Contact With USG
  • WebCT Representatives Met With EGC Committee
  • November 4 Got Ball Rolling
  • November 20-21 Training of Faculty
  • December 6 Set Expectations for Faculty
  • December 12 WebCT on System Server
  • December 16 Designer Training
  • January 6 Classes Began
  • February - Designer Training Pt 2
  • August 2003 Fall Work Conference Refresher
    Training

7
Goals
  • 100 of Full-Time Faculty Using Vista
  • 100 of Part-Time Faculty On Swainsboro Campus
    Using Vista
  • Minimum Syllabus Email
  • Discussions, Calendar, Grades, Announcements
  • 10 of Full-Time Faculty as Designers
  • Do Administrative Evaluation Using WebCT
  • Do Student Evaluations of Instruction on WebCT
  • Use WebCT For Student Services

8
Administrative Challenges
  • No Incentives
  • No Money
  • No Release Time
  • Delay in WebCT on Server
  • Not Much Time to Learn
  • Lost Instructional Technologist
  • Good Cop, Bad Cop!

9
How was Vista Used?
  • Hybrid Courses (spring semester all courses)
  • Web-Delivered Courses (summer semester)
  • Campus-wide administrator evaluation
  • Course evaluation
  • Campus-wide announcements
  • Campus wide discussion forum (forth-coming)
  • Faculty discussion forum (forth-coming)

10
Questions for this Section
11
Stages of Implementation
12
Faculty Training
  • Initial faculty orientation and training (Dec.)
  • Follow-up training (Feb.)
  • Antidotal exploration and discussion
  • Stage 2 refresher training (Aug.)

13
Participation (based on electronic observation)
  • 32 of 39 Full-Time Faculty Participated
  • 2 of 8 Part-Time Faculty Participated
  • 22 Faculty Went Beyond Minimum
  • 22 Faculty Took Designer Training
  • 1 Faculty Member Completely Online
  • Approximately 65-70 of Faculty and Staff
    Completed Administrative Evaluations

14
Assessment
  • Evaluation data was collected from numerous
    sources throughout the semester.
  • Electronic Observation (tally of participation)
  • Voluntary email replies to informal inquiry
  • Anonymous Faculty Survey
  • FOCUS meeting discussion
  • End of Semester Faculty Survey
  • End of Semester Student Survey

15
Questions for this Section
16
Faculty Response
17
VISTA Users
  • There were 30 total respondents.
  • Twenty-five (83.3) of the respondents were
    teachers.
  • Eighty-four percent (21 / 84) of those who teach
    used WebCT VISTA this semester.

18
How Was VISTA Used?
  • The most common tools (used by nearly half or
    more of faculty) were
  • Syllabus
  • Calendar
  • Grade book
  • Email

19
Faculty Disposition During WebCT-VISTA
Implementation
Very Positive
Positive
Moderate
Negative
Very Negative
20
Faculty Disposition During WebCT-VISTA
Implementation
Very Positive
Im very excited!
Positive
Moderate
Negative
Very Negative
I started with this project very hopeful and
ambitious,
21
Faculty Disposition During WebCT-VISTA
Implementation
Very Positive
Im very excited!
… very frustrated … After the Designer training,
I was really motivated and came up with all sorts
of things that I wanted to put online... I was so
excited, in fact, that I gave up a week of my
Christmas break and came back to Georgia to work
on getting my courses set up. Unfortunately, I
came to campus every day that week only to
discover that Vista was not up…
Positive
Moderate
WebCT is not very user-friendly,
It was very slow. I have learned patience with
WebCT. My logic does not always fit the WebCT
logic.
Negative
…frustrated by my inability to import my syllabi
Very Negative
The program was not ready to go when the semester
started so faculty had little or in some cases no
lead-time to upload data and organize their
classes. When it became available some important
functions did not work. Most notable was the
upload function of the file manager. Faculty had
learned in the training that they could simply
convert their already existing syllabus from a
word document to and HTML file and then upload it
to WebCT to be used for the syllabus tool. After
about 10 frustrating upload attempts, I gave up
and posted my syllabus on an ordinary web page
until the bug was fixed. Another problem was
speed. It seems that on some days the program
refreshes the screen quickly and on others it is
very slow (even on-campus).
I started with this project very hopeful and
ambitious, now I find myself more frustrated than
ambitious. I have spoken to other faculty who
have all but thrown in the towel.
22
Faculty Disposition During WebCT-VISTA
Implementation
Very Positive
Im very excited!
As with any Beta software, there will always be
some issues to work through, especially in the
beginning. After most of the bugs were worked
out in the first two weeks of the semester, all
of the functionality was there. It is sometimes
slow, but nothing like the first two weeks. I
think Vista has come a long way in a short time.
-- Computer Services
… very frustrated … After the Designer training,
I was really motivated and came up with all sorts
of things that I wanted to put online... I was so
excited, in fact, that I gave up a week of my
Christmas break and came back to Georgia to work
on getting my courses set up. Unfortunately, I
came to campus every day that week only to
discover that Vista was not up…
Positive
Moderate
Negative
WebCT is not very user-friendly, but its
capabilities seem to be improving
…frustrated by my inability to import my syllabi
Very Negative
So far I have uploaded my syllabus to the WebCT
for each of my classes and have started to enter
grades into the grade books. I have sent e-mail
messages to all of my students through WebCT and
asked them to respond to me via the WebCT so I
can be sure we are all "communicating."  It has
been a slow process but most of the students have
responded and I am planning other
additions/activities …
I started with this project very hopeful and
ambitious, now I find myself more frustrated than
ambitious. I have spoken to other faculty who
have all but thrown in the towel.
23
Faculty Disposition During WebCT-VISTA
Implementation
Very Positive
Im very excited!
I used it as a one-stop storage place for my
PowerPoint shows, notes and handouts. I simply
opened WebCT and projected that information on
the big screen during class. I also projected
student discussion articles during class and
asked the students to read their own work aloud.
I feel that this activity enhanced our discussion
a lot.
… very frustrated … After the Designer training,
I was really motivated and came up with all sorts
of things that I wanted to put online... I was so
excited, in fact, that I gave up a week of my
Christmas break and came back to Georgia to work
on getting my courses set up. Unfortunately, I
came to campus every day that week only to
discover that Vista was not up…
Positive
Moderate
I look forward to watching this great technology
expand…We are making history.
Negative
WebCT is not very user-friendly, but its
capabilities seem to be improving
…frustrated by my inability to import my syllabi
Very Negative
So far I have uploaded my syllabus to the WebCT
for each of my classes and have started to enter
grades into the grade books. I have sent e-mail
messages to all of my students through WebCT and
asked them to respond to me via the WebCT so I
can be sure we are all "communicating."  It has
been a slow process but most of the students have
responded and I am planning other
additions/activities …
I started with this project very hopeful and
ambitious, now I find myself more frustrated than
ambitious. I have spoken to other faculty who
have all but thrown in the towel.
…after 10 frustrating upload attempts, I gave up
and posted my syllabus on an ordinary web page
until the bug was fixed in VISTA.
24
Faculty Opinion at End of Semester
Strongly Disagree
Disagree
Agree
Strongly Agree
25
Questions for this Section
26
Student Response
27
Student Reactions
  • I think WebCT is a great idea. A lot of our
    students didn't even have an email address until
    our school gave them one. They are scared of
    technology, so this a good way to introduce email
    and the web, etc. to them.

28
Student Reactions to WebCT-VISTA
Some are frustrated because they still can't log
on. … have trouble figuring out how to maneuver
in this system. ("GO" buttons, etc.) … they would
like someone to show them how it works … Some say
that they have given up and want me to use their
private email to contact them.
My students are excited…they find the
announcements useful and helpful and they liked
the fact that they could immediately find out
their grade after a quiz and they liked being
able to see their grades at anytime in the grade
book.
29
Student Use of Features
30
Student Disposition
31
What Students Like Most
32
What Students Dislike Most
33
Questions for this Section
34
Successes
35
Successes
  • I used it as a one-stop storage place for my
    PowerPoint shows, notes and handouts.

36
Successes
  • The technology was used to increase
    student-to-faculty contact and to encourage
    student-to-student communication. One respondent
    suggested that many students
  • feel more comfortable via a web chat than
    interacting in class.
  • Another faculty reported that the level of active
    learning dramatically increased when the
    discussion tool was used both inside and
    outside of class in the hybrid course.
    Specifically,
  • it forced every student in the class to
    participate in the discussion and they
    seemed to pay more attention to the discussion.
  • Respondents also used WebCT to provide prompt
    feedback to their students. Some suggested that
    immediate posting of grades was the feature most
    appreciated by students.

37
Helping Others
  • Demonstration
  • Tutorial on a specific tool
  • Performing a function in someones behalf
  • Answering questions and offering encouragement
  • Working as partners in discovery

I am waiting for OTHER faculty to learn so they
can teach ME! -
Prof. X
We sat down and figured it out together.
- Prof. Y
38
Questions for this Section
39
Non-Successes
40
Difficulties
  • (1) The program was unfriendly or awkward to use.
  • (2) The learning curve was too steep.
  • (3) The program was excessively slow.
  • (4) Some program functions did not work.
  • (5) Respondents had difficulty uploading files.
  • (6) Students did not log-on or had difficulty
    figuring out how to log-on.

41
  • Respondents described the speed problem as slow
    to the point of smashing the system and it is
    so slow that it discourages its use.
  • Many of the faculty misunderstood what we were
    trying to accomplish during the first semester.
    I think they also expected this to be a flawless
    system. WE are beta site. WE were expected to
    identify problems so they could be corrected.

42
Solving Problems
  • Where did faculty seek assistance?
  • Nearly half (45) of the faculty sought help from
    only one source. Thirty percent sought help from
    two sources and 15 sought help from three or
    more sources.

43
Other Comments
The most negative comments suggested that the
project may be an example of bureaucratic
oligarchy overshadowing faculty autonomy within
higher education.
The most positive comments focused on the
potential of WebCT to enhance student learning.
There were more positive than negative comments.
44
Questions for this Section
45
Future Plans
46
The Future
  • Increased compliance Since the survey 2 of the
    4 non-users have added their syllabus with help
    from other faculty members
  • Exploration Stage for Some The posture of
    faculty who attended the FOCUS meeting was one of
    exploration.
  • Divided Approach By the end of the semester,
    the faculty had become divided in their approach
    to the Vista tool.
  • The Eager (but not quite as eager as they once
    were)
  • The Cautious
  • The Reluctant
  • The Resentful

47
Stage 2 Refresher Training
Stage 2 Refresher Training has been scheduled as
a part of the Fall Work Conference.
48
Questions for this Section
49
Lessons Recommendations
50
What We Learned (so far)
  • Hybrid courses …
  • require an additional investment of time.
  • are not for the lazy or faint of heart.
  • facilitate better organization of course
    materials.
  • encourage time on task during class as well as
    outside of class.
  • can increase faculty-student and student-student
    communication.
  • not only change the professors role but also
    change the students orientation toward learning.
  • provoke varied responses from students.

51
Recommendations
  • Implementation should be preceded by extensive
    preparation of faculty and followed by continuous
    faculty development.

If faculty had had access prior to the semester's
beginning, it might have gone more smoothly.
Early problems may not have been as daunting if
we had used the Spring semester for training and
preparation and waited until the Fall semester
for the complete roll out.
52
Recommendations
  • Preparation should begin early and individual
    course content should be created before the
    semester begins.
  • Technical support should be provided for both
    faculty and students (such as a physical help
    desk).
  • Pedagogical issues should be integrated with the
    basic orientation.
  • Formative evaluation and assessment activities
    should be a part of the project.
  • ???

53
The End.
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