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Multicampus Planning for the Enhancement of Teaching with Technology: The University of Massachusetts Initiative


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Title: Multicampus Planning for the Enhancement of Teaching with Technology: The University of Massachusetts Initiative

Multicampus Planning for the Enhancement of
Teaching with Technology The University of
Massachusetts Initiative
Educause 2006 David Gray, CIO Vice President
of Information Services CEO, UMassOnline Robert
Green, Vice Chancellor for Library Services,
Information Resources, and Technology, UMass
Dartmouth Mark Schlesinger, Associate Vice
President for Academic Technology
  • An Imperative for Action
  • The UMass Context
  • Run-up to the Initiative, through 2004-2005
  • The First Year (2005-2006)
  • The Current Snapshot
  • Recommendations
  • Process Issues
  • What Weve Learned and Next Steps

Statement of the Problem
  • The Information Revolution
  • Technology itself
  • The Knowledge Economy Demands on the
    Educated Graduate
  • Evolution in Thinking about Learning and
    Appropriate Teaching
  • Need to Manage Complexity across Campuses Share
    Knowledge and Expertise

An Imperative for Action
  • Though technology may have formerly been
    regarded as a tool of efficiency or as a medium
    for alternatives to traditional practices. . .
    academic technology provides opportunities for us
    to teach and learn better, and the institutions
    that seize those opportunities will be
    institutions that achieve distinction.
  • For the University of Massachusetts to
    fulfill its mission to the Commonwealth and to
    offer access to excellence in teaching and
    learning, it must adopt a proactive approach to
    academic technology, one based on a clear, widely
    accepted vision and a realistic plan. That
    acceptance should proceed not from edict but by
    the collaborative efforts of faculty and staff
    across the campus as they capitalize on the power
    of digital technology.
  • Academic Technology for Teaching and Learning
    Vision and Plan. Excellence and Innovation at

The Planning Context
Planning and Visioning Touch Points
  • Collaborative History
  • Information Technology Council Charter
  • ITC Subcommittee on Academic Technology Charter
  • Campus Strategic Plans
  • Board of Trustees Strategic Priorities

The Information Technology Council
  • To achieve distinction, the University of
    Massachusetts must provide an advanced
    technological infrastructure that will attract
    and support students, faculty, and researchers.
  • Charge
  • Develop and foster the vision and provide the
    leadership necessary to sustain and advance the
    use of technology to support activity at every
    level within the University. The ITC will
    champion the value of technology to the larger
    enterprise. The ITC will identify priorities
    within information technology and will provide
    high level leadership to drive through change
    within the University. The ITC will foster
    coherence wherever possible working within the
    University framework of intelligent autonomy.
  • Objective
  • Assure that faculty, staff, students, and all
    other clients of the University have the highest
    quality access to information. High quality
    access encompasses ease of use, timeliness,
    capacity, and security. To enable these
    features, the ITC will promote an information
    technology environment that is technically
    advanced, seamless, and nimble. Particular
    emphasis will be placed on campus-wide and
    trans-campus mechanisms and architectures that
    enable the easy flow of information across
    functional areas, such as between research and
    education, or between students and
  • From the ITC Mission and Charter

The Subcommittee on Academic Technology
  • The Information Technology Council
    Subcommittee on Academic Technology (SAT) is
    charged with facilitating the development and
    implementation of a vision for effective
    utilization of technology in teaching, learning
    and scholarship at the University of
    Massachusetts. In support of the implementation
    of the vision, the goals are to
  • Identify and facilitate the resolution of
    system-wide academic information technology
    issues and policies
  • Encourage the sharing of information and
    expertise among campuses and promote faculty
    development activities
  • Facilitate pilot projects and demonstrations to
    illustrate new uses of academic information
  • Monitor system and campus progress towards
    effective academic uses of technology
  • Support new constituencies for technology-based
    delivery of academic programs
  • Identify external funding opportunities for
    multi-campus academic information technology

Trustee Strategic Priorities
  • 1. -- Improve the student learning experience at
    The University of Massachusetts
  • Provide high quality university education through
    new modes of teaching and learning that
    effectively engage students
  • Make more effective use of technology in the
    classroom and in the delivery of student services
  • Expand research opportunities for undergraduate
  • Increase opportunities for international study
  • 8. Develop first-rate University infrastructure
  • Implement a 1.7 B capital program over the next
    five years
  • Meet deferred maintenance/compliance/repair needs
  • Enhance The Universitys IT infrastructure
  • Construct leading-edge academic and research
  • Build new dorms and campus centers
  • 9. Improve the Delivery of Administrative and
    IT Services
  • Explore opportunities to shift from current
    service models to more collaborative models where
    appropriate to generate efficiencies and cost
  • Continue to utilize advanced technology to
    improve university services wherever possible
  • Make The Universitys IT infrastructure available
    to state and community colleges, state agencies
    and others where it is mutually beneficial

Beginning of the Vision/Plan Initiative
  • SATs expanded mission and higher-level focus
  • New President with deep experience and interest
    in technologys contributions to the academic
  • 2004-2005
  • Drafting and approval internal to SAT
  • Sharing with ITC and Provosts
  • Campus Visits
  • Revisions
  • Endorsements
  • Provosts
  • Chancellors
  • President

Academic Technology for Teaching and Learning
Vision and Plan
  • Vision for the Year 2015
  • The University of Massachusetts is recognized as
    a leading university in using academic technology
    to improve teaching, learning, and scholarly
    interchange, and in evolving its role as a
    university in an information age society.
  • Specific Vision Outcomes for Faculty, Students,
    Staff, Alumni (Sample)
  • There is a general sense among faculty, staff and
    students that UMass campuses value teaching and
    learning and invest well in it, and that UMass
    provides a nationally recognized, innovative, and
    excellent educational opportunity to its students
  • UMass effectively supports student acquisition
    and use of computing/communication divides that
    take advantage of the most forward-looking

Academic Technology for Teaching and Learning
Vision and Plan
  • Plan Guiding Principles
  • Teaching and learning with technology are about
    faculty, not technology
  • Good practice is built on inquiry and reflection
  • Evolving academic technology creates new
    opportunities to build effective learning
  • Infrastructure and support for effective learning
    environments must consistently be strong
  • Initial implementation of technologies is only
    the beginning
  • Institutional structure must establish paths of
    least resistance

The Seven Principles for Good Practice
  • Effective undergraduate teaching. . .
  • Encourages contacts between students and faculty
  • Develops reciprocity and cooperation among
  • Uses active learning techniques
  • Gives prompt feedback
  • Emphasizes time on task
  • Communicates high expectations
  • Respects diverse talents and ways of learning
  • Chickering, 1987 Chickering Ehrmann, 1996

Academic Technology for Teaching and Learning
Vision and Plan
Academic Technology for Teaching and Learning
Vision and Plan
  • Plan Goals Over Time
  • Year 1
  • Achieve buy-in
  • Hire Associate VP for Academic Technology
  • Establish Work Groups in 5 areas
  • Assessment
  • Course and Curriculum redesign
  • Faculty Engagement and the Scholarship of
    Teaching and Learning
  • Physical and Virtual Learning Environments
  • Support Services
  • Year 2
  • Establish end-of-year-5 goals
  • Establish meaningful metrics
  • Augment program reviews with technology, teaching
    and learning objectives
  • Establish a strategy for sharing innovative
    applications of academic technology

Working Groups
  • Membership Faculty and staff from each campus
    and the Presidents Office
  • Charged to review state of art, identify campus
    highlights, point to good practice, recommend
    next steps
  • Recommendations delivered at a Working Group
    Summit on September 22, 2006
  • Themes
  • Integration of Learning and Teaching (LT)
  • Faculty Engagement
  • Assessment and Planning
  • Infrastructure
  • Collaborative Processes

Sampling Working Group Recommendations
  • Integration of LT
  • Long Term
  • Tie LT issues to strategic planning adjustments
  • Continuous review of LT structures and processes
  • Shorter Term
  • Review structural placement of instructional
    development and IT support. . .
  • Bring faculty and staff together to develop LT
  • Establish provost office role for
    LT/instructional development
  • Faculty Engagement
  • Long Term
  • Promote a culture that values and respects the
    Universitys core teaching mission.
  • Measures of and rewards for excellence in
    teaching, and in teaching with technology
  • Integration of teaching and LT into promotion and
    tenure process
  • Shorter Term
  • Professional development opportunities and
    incentives for deliverables for peer review and
  • Create UMass-wide venue for SoTL, sharing of best
    practices, collaboration, and peer review

Parallel Activities in Year 1
  • System-Wide Symposia
  • Teaching and Learning with Tablet PCs
  • Teaching and Learning Using Electronic Portfolios
  • How Do We Know Our Students Are Learning
  • Expansion of Academic Technology Grants
  • Professional Development Grants
  • Strategic Initiative Grants
  • Nurturing of Special Interest Groups
  • Medical Education
  • Arts
  • ePortfolios
  • Participation in Related Ventures
  • Continuing Education Council (UMassOnline)
  • ITC
  • Campus Endeavors

Snapshot, October 12, 2006
  • Recommendations being written up for approval of
    SAT and ITC
  • Provost endorsement of and participation in
    campus visits
  • Finalization of Year 2 recommendations, with
    roles and tasks defined by December 2006?

Next Steps
  • Continuation of Plan-Related Activities
  • Expansion of AT Grants (including SoTL)
  • Working Groups The Sequel
  • Special Interest Groups
  • March Conference The Scholarship of Teaching
    and Learning Technology and Reflective Practice
  • Establish end-of-year-5 goals
  • Establish meaningful metrics
  • Assessment (Augment program reviews with
    technology, teaching and learning objectives)
  • Expand Virtual Place for Sharing and

The Working Group Planning Process
  • Strengths
  • Membership
  • Flexibility within charge
  • Difficulties
  • Workload of key members volume and locale
  • Complexity and size of the task

Lessons Learned
  • Incentives and rewards (or disincentives and
    punishments) A Dominant Theme in the. . .
  • Commitment of faculty to engagement in teaching,
    learning, and technology
  • Ability of talented committee members to devote
    time and energy to major projects that are
  • Priority of campus obligations
  • Priority on research, and concurrent isolation of
  • A small group of dedicated faculty and staff can
    have a large impact, especially when technology
    can vividly be shown to address felt needs in
  • Project groups must have realistic goals, tasks,
    resources, and timetables (Yourdon, Death March)
  • Others
  • Importance of campus organization, structure,
  • Balance short, medium, and long term

  • Chickering, A., Ehrmann, S. Implementing the
    Seven Principles Technology as a Lever. AAHE
    Bulletin (49,2), 1996.
  • Chickering, A., Gamson, Z. Seven Principles of
    Good Practice in Undergraduate Education. AAHE
    Bulletin (39,7), 1987.
  • Duberstadt, J Wulf, W. Zemsky, Robert.
    Envisioning a transformed university. Issues in
    Science and Technology, Fall 2005.
  • Mott, J.D., Granata, G. Beyond ROI. Educause
    Quarterly (29,2), 2006.
  • University of Massachusetts, Information
    Technology Council. ITC Mission and Charter.
    Revised 2006. http//
  • University of Massachusetts, Information
    Technology Council Subcommittee on Academic
  • Academic Technology for Teaching and Learning
    Vision and Plan, 2005. http//
  • Academic Technology Grants, 2006.
  • Charter, 2004. http//
  • Yourdon, E. Death March, Second Edition.
    Prentice-Hall, 2003.
  • Interviewed CAI An IT Metrics and Productivity
    Journal Special Edition, 2006. http//www.compaid.

Thank You David Gray Bob
Green Mark Schlesinger ITC http//www.massachuse SAT http//