@ONE Project Outlines Lessons Learned
@ONE, the technology training and learning project for the California Community College (CCC) system, has been funded for a third year for 1999-2000.
The staff of @ONE recently took time to reflect on lessons learned over the last two years during one of the audiographic conferences (a telephone conference call that incorporates reference information on a Web site or a computer) sponsored by the System Think Tank project led by Virginia McBride from Mt. San Antonio College. Over 40 participants from around the state joined the conference and explored the @ONE electronic learning community (http://one.fhda.edu) before focusing on instructional technology issues.
Recently, direction has focused on the business plan developed to continue the project eventually in a cost-recovery mode. However, the Advisory Committee has primarily advised on issues that need to be brought forward to the California Community Colleges Chancellors Office (CCCCO) and the Technology and Telecommunications Advisory Committee (TTAC).
Results from @ONE Advisory Committee recommendations to TTAC include:
The @ONE Advisory Committee also recommended coordination of technology at the CCC Vice Chancellor level so that there would be coordination of the many technology related initiatives and projects being funded by the Chancellors Office.
What @ONE Has Learned
1. There is a need for a central meeting place or portal to collect information and communicate about instructional technology use and learning opportunities.
We think there would be great value for the CCC System to have a one-stop Web site/portal for the many related projects and resources in the system for technology faculty development and support.
This issue is related to a larger issue. The Chancellors Office current approach for funding technology initiatives in the colleges is project-driven and coming from a number of different CCCCO units. In order for the investment being made in these projects to provide a support infrastructure for the CCC system, it is imperative that these initiatives build on and integrate the work of present and future projects.
2. There is a need to promote and teach effective methods and pedagogy for using technology.
In the 1998 faculty instructional technology needs assessment, we found that faculty are interested in ways to use technology to improve student outcomes. We think that the niche for @ONE is not to teach a software package, but to provide opportunities for faculty to learn how it can effectively be used in instruction.
3. There is a need for a wide range of skills for course development.
One of the strategies in the @ONE Training Plan has been to develop self-contained training courses or packages that can be picked up by local campuses to train faculty on site.
What we have found in the development of the first two training packages, Using Email to Support Instruction and Using a Web site to Support Instruction, is that no one person had the skills to develop and produce the entire training unit.
We have needed an instructional designer, writer, Web master, subject matter experts (faculty who have successfully used the technology in instruction), video producer with the assorted required skills, and project manager.
This point also has implications for course development by faculty on campus. As faculty continue to expand their use of instructional technology, there is a greater need for development experts on campus to play a role on a development team.
4. To locate and broker quality existing training may be more cost effective than development.
We have found training development to be expensive and time consuming when we start from scratch. We think there is a useful role for @ONE to play in identifying quality training that already exists and make it more accessible to the community colleges.
We have found that the @ONE niche, focusing on effective pedagogy when integrating technology, is not a crowded market. However, we have yet to do targeted investigation, and we expect that this training is being developed in different segments of higher education. Some of this may be developed within the CCC system. One example of making outside training more accessible is the UCLA Extension Online Teaching Program, for which weve negotiated a discount for California Community College faculty and staff.
5. The development of the @ONE Business Plan to recover costs is not always compatible with what we think would be most valuable to the community college system.
For example, because the needs assessment pointed to taking advantage of on-campus staff development structures (faculty didnt want to travel, wanted training in short chunks, liked being mentored, liked using flex days) we had decided to focus on supporting existing training units and train the trainer. However, in the development of the business plan, we realized it may not be a good business strategy to focus on the small market of trainers for 107 colleges, rather than the 45,000 faculty in the system.
Also, we believe the online resources and communication infrastructure that the @ONE eCommunity provides is important. However, we are struggling with how to recover costs for maintaining and growing the @ONE site.
6. There is a need to assess how technology affects student outcomes.
Very important to all of our work as educators is learning whether or how technology affects student outcomes. This research is not within the scope of the @ONE project, but it is something that we support being done within the context of community college learners.
7. Effective use of technology has made working at a distance possible among the @ONE project team and partners. Some of the techniques that we have used over the course of the project are:
@ONE in 1999-2000
A Trainers Network for both community college technology trainers and instructional designers is being developed. The @ONE electronic learning community will also continue to support the infrastructure for faculty communication and technology training.
@ONE will identify other training partners, in addition to partnerships with UCLA Extension for the Online Teaching for CC Instruction program (see the @ONE web site for fall courses), and the CCC Academic Senate for the Faculty Summer Institute in June 2000.
The fiscal agent for the @ONE project is De Anza College in Cupertino, California. Funding for @ONE is from the California Community Colleges Chancellors Office Telecommunication and Technology Infrastructure Program.