Instructional technology supporting what we do well: A pilot project at Colby College

  • When: 3:15-4:00 PM, Wednesday, September 17, 2015
  • Where: Room 107, Oechsle Center for Global Education
  • Presenters:
    • Jason Parkhill, Director of Academic ITS, Colby College
    • Jim Sloat, Assistant Provost and Assistant Dean of Faculty for
      Academic Development, Colby College

Partnering with the Provost’s Office, Academic ITS at Colby College conducted a pilot with faculty teaching three different courses during the 2014-2015 academic year. The pilot, dubbed “active learning with technology” (ALT), specifically focused on design or redesign of the three courses to increase student learning and engagement in ways that reinforce our liberal arts identity. One of the classes took a fully flipped approach with all material previously delivered by lecture instead delivered out of class by video with built-in quizzing, allowed the instructor to conduct all face-to-face class meetings in discussion format. Another course focused on incorporation of project-based learning around an online art exhibit featuring Maine artists. A third course, team taught by an economist and a chemist, took a blended approach that provided a rich set of custom online video tutorials and other materials recognizing that the cross-listed course would attract student with disparate preparation for its various aspects.

We will provide an overview of the pilot’s conception, challenges and lessons-learned, from the perspectives of the instructional technology staff involved, our faculty colleagues, and students taking and assisting in development of the ALT courses. Additionally, we will describe the next steps undertaken to scale up this project to include new academic programs and technologies for 2015-2016.

About the Presenters

Jason Parkhill is Director of Academic ITS at Colby College. He and his staff work with faculty in the evaluation and assessment of applications of information technology and their effectiveness in meeting educational objectives as well as identifying new and innovative technology applications.

Jim Sloat is Assistant Provost and Assistant Dean of Faculty for Academic Development at Colby College. Among other responsibilities, Jim works to facilitate collaboration between administrative offices (such as Academic ITS) to enhance the support available to both
faculty and students.