A Networked History of UMW’s DTLT

Mary Washington College’s Proposal for CNI’s Assessing the Academic Networked Environment Project One of the things I derive great pleasure from is learning about the long history of the edtech field. It’s such a strange, intersitital “discipline” between IT support and academics on one hand, and revolution and conformity on the other. It’s a deeply shizophrenic field in so many ways, and I think that’s why it appeals to me so much Within the long, sordid history of edtech, nothing interests me more than the particulars of the group I currently work with, UMW’s DTLT. When Martha, Andy, and Jerry tell stories of the past it’s like sitting around the dinner table hearing stories about my ancestors. Overblown simile, I know, but I can’t help it. I’m intrigued to no end of what came before me. The same is true when Brian Lamb starts getting on a roll about the history of learning objects in edtech during the early 2000s. So, I … [Read more...]

All aboard, hippies! Next stop: UMW

It’s official, so I can finally share the good news: this summer I’ll be moving to Fredericksburg, Virginia to work with Lisa Ames, Martha Burtis, Jim Groom, Tim Owens, and Andy Rush as well as an amazing group of faculty, staff, and students at the University of Mary Washington. The DTLT and the people they support are doing really amazing work (UMW Blogs, Domain of One’s Own, DS106, DTLT Today, the ThinkLab makerspace, etc) and I am totally thrilled to join what I consider to be the best damn edtech shop around. I don’t have a whole lot of brainpower at the moment, but I want to take just a second to thank someone who has been an integral part of my getting to this point. To Barbara Sawhill: thank you for all you have done to push, cajole, thwap, and encourage me lo these many years. (Okay, so it’s only been eight years, but I think we’d both agree it feels like longer.) If I have seen further it is by standing on your shoulders, and I am … [Read more...]

A Culture of Innovation

A Culture of Innovation from umwnewmedia on Vimeo. UMW’s Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies (DTLT) presented on Tuesday, October 2nd at the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative’s Online Fall Focus Session on the theme of innovation in higher education. The basic question guiding the presentation, which was centered around the 7 minute video above, was the following: how does a university like UMW consistently foster innovative projects like UMW Blogs, ds106, and, more recently, A Domain of One’s Own? There’s no one adequate stock answer to such a question, so when preparing the presentation DTLT decided to interview students, faculty, and staff around campus to get a broader sense of the culture of innovation happening at UMW. What DTLT got in return for its labors was quite compelling. The video was shot and edited by Andy Rush, and it’s just a teaser for a much larger documentary that DTLT is planning on making this semester to start chronicling and narrating the culture of … [Read more...]