T4 (the Teaching Through Technology Task Force) is the host of this blog, the developer of the faculty and student surveys and the designer of the Spring '12 Summit sponsored by VCAA James Breece. T4 was established by Chancellor Pattenaude in 2010 as a group of faculty, administrators, students and IT professionals from across the System studying the current eLearning campus landscapes and the impact teaching and learning mediated by digital technologies. We are conducting these studies in collaboration with the Center for Research and Evaluation located in Orono.
Since 2010 it has published two reports on the state of eLearning within UMS. In 2011 it has designed and is conducting a System wide faculty survey together with campus faculty focus groups on all seven campuses. In Fall of 2012 it will conduct a parallel student survey. The results of these surveys will be shared at a System wide eLearning Summit on April of 2012.
In order to better align the many campus and System level eLearning development groups, T4 is partnering with two parallel System wide development groups to co-host the April Summit. The Distance Learning Steering Committee (see links) is the second group. UMS Information Technology Services is the third.
In thinking about the alignment of these three groups it is helpful to know the following. T4 is a time limited 'think tank' effort, designed to study the state of eLearning in UMS, provide useful data on the impact of eLearning upon faculty and students and to offer recommendations to better align System assets. The aspiration of T4 is to assist the Chancellor in moving the System towards the development of a System wide eLearning development plan.
DLSC, established in 2011, has developed recommendations for the Board of Trustees about how best to strengthen the relationship between centralized and campus based distance learning support services. It has focused largely upon issues related to developing an array of centralized services primarily housed in University College. It has also submitted recommendations for form an eLearning governance structure and identifying optimal funding methods for University College.
ITS is the group focused primarily upon acquiring, deploying and supporting the use of large scale computer technologies, LMS (learning management system) and MIS (management information system) assets. Within ITS, a number of smaller groups (e.g. an LMS Committee and a Blackboard Core Group) are evaluating the use of these assets.
These three System level entities are working together to support campus efforts who in turn support faculty and students making the transition into fully integrated eLearning and eTeaching environments.
T4 meetings and contacts. The eLearning summit is planned for April 3 and the next full T4 meeting is scheduled for May 18th. If you have any questions or suggestions about T4, either visit the T4 website in Blackboard or contact Ken Elliott (email@example.com) the project manager.