Fall 2012

Exercise Space on West Bank and a Parking Discount – GAPSA Resolution

»Posted by on Sep 27, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

With an increasing demand for mental health services and an obesity crisis, it is important to do all we can to provide incentives for people to live healthier lifestyles. GAPSA passed two resolutions this year with this goal objective. One of them addressed the difficulty of accessing recreation facilities, while the other one emphasize the importance of increasingly the availability of services in the West Bank. Whereas there are around 20 recreation facilities on campus, only one of them is currently located on the West Bank. Rec Sports is planning to built a new recreation center soon, but we are working to provide services for students in the meanwhile.


 Graduate and Professional Student Assembly—University of Minnesota

Date : September 27, 2012

Author: Alfonso Sintjago, Cody Mikl, Dana Meade, Meghan Mason

Topic: Parking Discount When Attending Exercise Facilities


WHEREAS, physical activity and a healthy lifestyle can improve the student experience and;

WHEREAS, physical exercise can help to reduce student anxiety and improve individuals’ well-being and;

 WHEREAS, students purchase subscriptions to private fitness facilities due to difficulties accessing the University of Minnesota Facilities;

 WHEREAS, many university students do not live in University housing and must travel by vehicle to utilize the university facilities;

WHEREAS, it is in the interest of the University and its students to maximize the use of its facilities;

WHEREAS, parking ramps are sometimes underutilized and the cost of parking can be prohibiting;

WHEREAS, other facilities offer parking discounts for the use of nearby venues;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will support the consideration of discounted parking for usage of recreation facilities and;

BE IT RESOLVED, student parking tickets will be stamped or marked to indicate that students have entered and exited the facility to note the time that will be discounted from their parking fee and;

BE IT RESOLVED, students will be notified every semester that they will be able to park for a discounted cost in nearby University of Minnesota parking ramps after regular business hours when there are no special events if they are planning on utilizing a recreation facility.



Graduate and Professional Student Assembly—University of Minnesota

Date : September 12, 2012

Author: Alfonso Sintjago, Cody Mikl, Chet Bodin

Topic: Exercise Space on West Bank

WHEREAS, Exercise facilities are an excellent place for students to gather informally and build friendships which enhances the campus community;

WHEREAS, exercise is a major component of a healthy lifestyle and can improve individual physical health and;

WHEREAS, exercise can also help in reducing student anxiety and improve individuals mental well-being and;

WHEREAS, the proximity of a facility can lead to its increase utilization and impact for a student body and approximately 13,000 students spend the majority of their time on the West Bank;

WHEREAS, obesity and a myriad of related health conditions such as type II diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease as well as reported mental health problems have increased in recent years

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will support the consideration and planning of a West Bank Recreation and Wellness facility along with a temporary space until that construction is completed no sooner than 2015;

BE IT RESOLVED, the temporary exercise space to be considered will include machinery that could be used for both strength and cardiovascular training

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Encouraging/supporting methods to visually present ideas – GAPSA Resolution

»Posted by on Sep 12, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

Increasingly, individuals will not only share their ideas in written form but also in video. Below is a resolution that GAPSA approved to further that idea. By promoting greater openness ideas can reach not just thousands but millions in a short amount of time. Another advantage of video is that as TED has illustrated, an powerful idea can be shared in only a few minutes. Most TED Talks are under 18 minutes and many other influential online videos are even shorter, some as short as a couple of minutes.


Graduate and Professional Student Assembly – University of Minnesota

Date : September 12, 2012

Author: Alfonso Sintjago, Executive Vice President

Topic: Encouraging/supporting methods to visually present ideas


WHEREAS, individuals are increasingly interconnected through improvements in telecommunications with over 5.8 billion mobile phone subscriptions worldwide; and

WHEREAS, the means to create and share videos are increasingly available to a larger number of individuals, including over 65% individuals in the United States between the ages of 18 to 29 who have access to smart phones; and

WHEREAS, videos are increasingly available in various subjects by multiple experts impacting the spread of ideas and aiding student learning, including over 72 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute and thousands of educational videos through initiatives such as TED, Khan’s Academy, Solve for X, RSAnimate, Sophia, among others; and

WHEREAS, the Internet has transformed into a resource through which most individuals access information, is currently the second most important source of news information for American households, and was recently voted a human right by the United Nations’ Human Rights Council (A/HRC/20/L.13); and

WHEREAS, graduate and professional students may benefit from additional opportunities to develop their presentation skills, and sharing their ideas with the global community.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will support a partnership with TEDx UMN with the hope of ensuring the continuation of their program; and

BE IT RESOLVED that the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will support a yearly event where graduate and professional students will be able to share their ideas with the Twin Cities community; and

BE IT RESOLVED that a website or portal will be developed to share edited graduate and professional student presentations that will be posted openly online fulfilling the University’s land grant mission of benefiting the people of the state, the nation, and the world.


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Open Access Journals – GAPSA Resolution

»Posted by on Sep 12, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

Having partnered with the UMN libraries in increasing OA awareness, GAPSA also passed this resolution and has committed itself this year to increase awareness of the benefits of increasing access to information. Knowledge should belong to everyone, especially when the government already paid for this research in the form of taxes and research funding. We have also encouraged faculty to sign a pledge in favor of Open Access publishing. The libraries created a series of handouts and the following website – https://www.lib.umn.edu/scholcom/open-access-umn


Graduate and Professional Student Assembly – University of Minnesota

Date : September 12, 2012

Author: Alfonso Sintjago, Executive Vice President

Topic: Open Access Journals

WHEREAS, Open Access advances scholarship, research, and public knowledge by making peer-reviewed journal articles freely available online, where they are readily accessible to students, researchers, and the public; and

WHEREAS, university libraries nationwide and the University of Minnesota have modified their subscriptions to academic journals to accommodate for the rising cost of subscriptions; and

WHEREAS, the cost of subscribing to academic journal continues to increase and outpace inflation by over 200% in recent years, despite cost-saving improvements in the distribution and communication technologies utilized by academic journals; and

WHEREAS, the national government spends over $60 billion annually on research projects and a large number of academic publications are funded by student tuition while some publications continue to remain inaccessible to the general public and students after graduation; and

WHEREAS, many authors do not obtain direct royalties from the publication of their academic articles and have an interest in increasing the impact and visibility of their work; and

WHEREAS, academic journals may be able to adopt an open access funding model while remaining financially sustainable, decreasing the cost of knowledge, and increasing access to information; and

WHEREAS, the Graduate Student and Professional Assembly previously supported the passing of the Federal Research Public Access Act, S. 1373 emphasizing the relevance of open access journals for graduate and professional students.


THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Graduate Student and Professional Assembly will collaborate in the hosting of a yearly panel along with the University of Minnesota Libraries to discuss the state of Open Access in the University of Minnesota; and

BE IT RESOLVED the Graduate Student and Professional Assembly will conduct an awareness campaign regarding the benefits of open access for students and faculty members at the University of Minnesota; and

BE IT RESOLVED the Graduate Student and Professional Assembly will support the further development and expansion of an institutional

fund to underwrite University of Minnesota authors’ costs in making their published works openly accessible as supported by both the Office of the Vice President for Research and the University Libraries.

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Open Textbook Initiative – GAPSA Resolution

»Posted by on Sep 12, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

Working with David Ernst has been inspiring. Following his project as well as the potential of OER to transform education. GAPSA recently adopted the resolution below. Hopefully other student government organizations will do just that. MSA, GAPSA counterpart for UMN undergraduate students recently adopted this resolution.


Graduate and Professional Student Assembly – University of Minnesota

Date : September 12, 2012

Author: Alfonso Sintjago, Executive Vice President

Topic: Open Textbook Initiative


WHEREAS, the high cost of textbooks currently prevents up to 7 out of every 10 students from purchasing all of their required textbooks during their academic career; and

WHEREAS, textbooks may not be fully utilized within a classroom as they may not fully apply to the content of the course and cannot easily be modified due to the lack of flexibility in book licenses; and

WHEREAS, the cost of publishing a textbook can be diminished through their acquisition in a digital format while the students who wish will also be able to purchase a paper copy; and

WHEREAS, the use of e-books will reduce the weight carried by students in their backpacks and improve the transportability and mobility of their books; and

WHEREAS, sustainable business models may be attained through an open textbook publishing model where experts are paid to write textbooks at a cost comparable to that of a traditional publishing company, but the digital copy of the textbooks are published free of cost online and made accessible to the general public; and

WHEREAS, high quality and useful information should be made available to as many individuals as possible and the high costs of tuition and living nationwide may be detrimentally impacting the utilization of educational materials; and

WHEREAS, the University of Minnesota has invested in developing a platform for the review and evaluation of Open Textbooks by faculty members at open.umn.edu for the use of educators worldwide.


THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will conduct an awareness campaign for faculty and students to encourage the further consideration of Open Textbooks for UMN graduate, professional and undergraduate courses; and

BE IT RESOLVED the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will encourage the further evaluation of Open Textbooks by university faculty to most adequately consider their potential use in some instances as replacements for more expensive course materials.


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Developmental Evaluation of GAPSA – Resolution

»Posted by on Sep 12, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

Including an iterative evaluation process is important for all organizations. While most organizations conduct informal evaluations regularly, formalizing the process can improve the collection and triangulation of data. GAPSA, an organization which I have worked extensively this past year, passed the resolution below to accomplish this.


Graduate and Professional Student Assembly – University of Minnesota

Date : September 12, 2012

Author: Alfonso Sintjago, Executive Vice President

Topic: Developmental Evaluation of GAPSA


WHEREAS, the mission and the vision of an organization should be clearly operationalized through the activities of an organization; and

WHEREAS, full-time graduate and professional students face competing responsibilities and financial limitations; and

WHEREAS, the continued analysis and observation of organizational activities can facilitate the improvement and adequate functioning of an organization; and

WHEREAS, a developmental and utilization-focus evaluation attempts to “evaluate processes, including asking evaluative questions and applying evaluation logic, to support program, product, staff and/or organizational development;” and

WHEREAS, “the evaluator is part of a team whose members collaborate to conceptualize, design and test new approaches in a long-term, on-going process of continuous improvement, adaptation and intentional change;”


THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED  the Graduate and Professional Student Assembly will conduct a developmental utility-focused evaluation throughout the 2012-2013 academic year; and

BE IT RESOLVED this internal evaluation will utilize a series of different qualitative methods including the use of focus groups, interviews, data analysis, and surveys to assess its functioning in relationship to student councils; and

BE IT RESOLVED that the evaluation will present a report to the General Assembly during the last meeting of the assembly or before the beginning of the next academic year (2013-2014).



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Doering’s Course – Designing Online Learning – Week 1 Blog

»Posted by on Sep 10, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

Doering’s Course – Designing Online Learning – Week 1 Blog

1.     Why do you want to become an online teacher?

Leaving Latin America was a difficult decision for my family. After all, we felt that our opportunities would be greater in the USA but by moving, we would not be able to contribute to the development and improvement of the country where we were born. I am glad we came to America, and when I am able to I intend to become a U.S citizen as my parents recently decided. Yet, the Internet allows us to contribute to anywhere from anywhere. The Internet and online education can help reduce some of the problems caused by transnational migration including mitigating the effects of the brain drain. For years, it has been my goal not only to help from a distance and promote the growth of open education, but also to encourage other immigrant to give back, if not in the form of financial remittances through knowledge remittances. Online education may help improve the economies of developing states, and of impoverished regions throughout the United States, as well as the rest of the world. I fully believe that while we are all different, that we should have the opportunity to develop our talents. Online education can reduce some of the traditional problems faced by increasing access to education.

2.     What are your concerns about being an online teacher?

That other voices will be less heard, both from individuals as well as cultures. While open educational programs such as MOOCs greatly increase access, they are also currently developed primarily in countries with higher economic standards and innovative traditions. I fully support the exchange of ideas from north to south and center to periphery, but I would like to see a greater transfer of knowledge and information from south to north and periphery to center. This is particularly important when we take into account that 25 native tongues are lost every year (out of 6,000+ languages). When visiting developing regions such as during my recent trip to the Dominican Republic, it was evident that an underfunded and understaffed educational system has resulted in individuals lacking awareness of their national history, and the increased globalization of their identity (accompanied by the erosion of their traditional / local identity). The transfer of ideas has been a positive force in human history, but I am concerned about the potential impact that the increased massification of education may have towards local cultures and their historical knowledge.

3.     What impact do you believe online learning will have on education in the future?

Online education will continue to grow and will also increase competition as more courses will be offered to a wider population. As more courses are offered and the cost of schooling per student decreases, there may be an overall increase in college degree graduates, yet many of them may be unable to find a job comparable (in financial remuneration) to those that were available before them. Online technologies will help increase access, but this will likely result in a potentially smaller financial gain for graduates in comparison to the financial gains which were obtained from previous generations that went to college. Competition is increasingly global and online education strengthens this trend. Overall, the increased in the number of students who obtain advanced degrees will result in a stronger national and global economy, a smarter citizenship, an improved standard of living, and an even faster rate of technological advancement, yet some of the statistics used to justify high tuition rates (such as an over $1 million gain in lifetime earnings by those who graduate from a higher education institution) may not necessarily play out as it did before. Some current prognostics are based on the gains of previous generations. Basing future statistics on what was true before can lead to economic miscalculations. While I am all for increasing access, it may not necessarily result in higher average incomes for graduates, although with a greater number of graduates, society as a whole should improve.

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OLPD Tech Redesign Report

»Posted by on Jun 13, 2012 in Fall 2012 | 0 comments

Year One Report (2011-2012) – Copy with Images at: http://z.umn.edu/olpdredesign

OLPD Student-led Technology Redesign

Task Group 

Table of Contents

Vision Statement 3

Introduction. 3

Creating a Collaborative Space to Promote and Maximize Innovative Technology Use. 5

Innovation Lab: Potential Uses for a Collaborative Space. 8

Proposed Collaborative Independent Study Course Within the Innovation Lab. 11

Technology Showcase. 13

Purpose. 13

Presentations. 13

Logistics. 14

Technology Survey. 15

I. Technology is evolving quickly and classroom culture needs to reflect those changes. What do you suggest for etiquette, best practices, and policies for the use of technology in the classroom?. 15

II. How can technical support be improved? And what topics need the most support?. 15

III. How would you envision a new collaborative space for OLPD students? And what would you like to see in it?. 16

Innovative Uses of the iPad. 17

Useful Links: 18

Technology Proficiency Expectations for OLPD Faculty. 19

NETS for Teachers (2008) – Digital Age Teaching Standards. 20

Internet and Computing Core Certification Requirements. 21

Computing Fundamentals. 21

Key Applications. 21

Living Online. 21

Moving Forward. 21

Useful Links: 22

Continuous Evaluation and Discussion. 23

Conclusions. 25

Recommendations. 26

Prospective Timeline. 27

References. 28

Appendix 1. 30

Appendix 2. 31

Appendix 3. 37

Vision Statement


The Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy and Development (OLPD) will be a campus-wide leader in the use of technology to enhance students’ educational experiences, academic praxis, and intellectual pursuits.


To achieve this vision, we aim to co-develop a culture within OLPD that anticipates and embraces technological change and encourages the use of existing and emerging technologies to support innovation and constructive collaboration among students, faculty and staff.


This report describes the outcomes of the activities of the first student-led OLPD Technology Redesign Task Group (TRTG) during the spring semester, 2012. The purpose of the TRTG was to explore ways that OLPD can use technology to enhance students’ educational experiences (see Appendix 1). In Fall, 2011, OLPD students were invited to submit application for participation in a task group with the purpose of “redesigning the use of technologies in the department”. The following five students were selected on the basis of their knowledge and experience of working with technology in educational settings:


  1. Kit Alvis, MA Student, CIDE
  2. Andrew Plovanich, B.S. Student, Business and Marketing Education & Human Resource Development
  3. Alfonso Sintjago, Ph.D. Student, CIDE
  4. Tryggvi Thayer, Ph.D. Candidate, CIDE
  5. T. Ann Tyler, Ph.D., EdAD


Dr. John Moravec was faculty coordinator and member ex-officio.


It has been suggested that we have entered into a period of exponential technological change making it unrealistic to predict, with any meaningful accuracy, what, precisely, technological landscapes will look like in the near-term or distant future (Kurzweil, 2006). For this reason, the TRTG adopted a broad definition of “technology” to include, not only information and communication technologies (i.e. computer hardware, software, peripherals, cell phones, etc.), but also essential technologies common to academic learning environments, including, classrooms, furniture, etc… (Kelly, 2011). Information and communication technologies, however, as particularly significant drivers of change, are considered to play an especially important role in the department’s technological landscape (Oblinger, 2012). Technological improvements can increase efficiencies transforming the “iron triangle” of cost, quality, and access. As modern technologies increase their influence, it is important to train experts possessing a strong understanding of technology, development, educational, and pedagogical theory (Heeks, 2008; Koehler and Mishra, 2008).


The TRTG focused primarily on exploring ways that the department’s students, faculty and staff, can use technology in general to promote and foster innovative uses of modern and emerging information and communication technologies.

The task group focused its efforts around the following five broad themes:


  • Collaborative spaces to promote and maximize innovative technology use.
  • How is technology being used by students, staff and faculty in OLPD?
  • New computing/communication/collaboration platforms (iPads, smartphones, social networking, media).
  • Establishing support networks for new technologies.
  • Establishing an Innovation Lab – Opportunities/coursework to promote and foster innovative practices.


The task group sought out information relative to these themes through several activities in addition to general discussions. Activities included:


  • Exploring existing collaborative spaces (i.e., CoCo co-working space, LT Media Lab – University of Minnesota) – Determining ways that the department can better utilize available space.
  • Technology Showcase – Students, staff and faculty were invited to share and learn about how technology is currently being used in OLPD.
  • OLPD innovation lab – Exploring ways that an innovation lab can be made available to OLPD students and faculty to experiment with technology in collaborative settings.
  • Survey on technology needs – Looking at students’ needs for access to technology and support services.


This report is organized around the previously mentioned themes. Each theme was discussed collaboratively, and analyzed in detail by specific group members who intertwined their expertise with relevant publications in policy, technology and innovation. Each section details the task group’s activities relevant to the theme and summarizes what was learned. Finally, the sections conclude with a list of recommendations for further action. The task group’s recommendations are also summarized in the final section.

Creating a Collaborative Space to Promote and Maximize Innovative Technology Use.


We define a “collaborative space” as a physical area that is conducive to collaboration, experimentation, exploration and knowledge sharing.


Our brainstorming sessions on collaborative space and the design of the innovation lab were informed by a review of literature on collaboration and collaborative spaces and visits to the University’s Learning Technologies Media Lab (http://lt.umn.edu/), as well as a visit to CoCo Minneapolis (http://cocomsp.com/locations/minneapolis/), a commercial collaborative work environment in downtown Minneapolis, and the relevant literature (esp. Oblinger, 2006; Makitalo et al., 2010). The collaborative space will help facilitate a more student-centered and flexible learning experience.


Some features of a collaborative space:


1. The space is multifunctional – The space can serve a range of purposes depending on the needs or wishes of users at any given time. It can be used for multiple learning experiences and benefit individuals with different learning styles (Cisco, 2008). The space is a flexible community organized site, balancing solitude, sharing, deep thinking and collaboration (Gee, 2006).


2. The space is organic – It can be repurposed to meet a range of needs. Furniture serves many potential purposes and is easily organized and reorganized. For example, rather than a single large “meeting table” that takes considerable space, a number of units can be organized into a large meeting table if and when needed. Subsections of the space can be temporarily modified around particular objectives.


3. Information and communication technologies (ICT) are available to fill potential gaps in users’ technology where they exist – Users are expected to have their own computers that they will use. However, technologies like printers, whiteboards and projectors, that users of the space cannot be expected to bring with them, should be made available and easily accessible, along with the software necessary to operate such devices.


What our collaborative space is not:


1. The collaborative space is not an office for graduate assistants – Collaborative spaces should be readily available for all OLPD students, both undergraduate and graduate. If possible the space would be accessible all day and year-round regulated by an appropriate security system. Students using the collaborative spaces should have a reasonable expectation of being able to work with independence, in a de-stressing environment, without faculty or staff assuming that they are “on call”. Some office-like spaces, like the cubicles on the 4th floor of Wulling Hall, should be available for graduate assistants as needed.


2. The collaborative space is not a computer lab for the department’s students – Services relating to students’ work for the department and faculty, that students can reasonably expect to be made available to them by the department, such as computers with specialized, expensive software (ex. SPSS, NVIVO, etc.) are not an integral component of the collaborative space.


Problem Statement:


OLPD students currently lack a designated space where they can get together and work collaboratively on projects. Increasing interaction in student-led projects can improve collaborative skills, leadership skills, and strengthen personal relationships that aid students in their future professional careers. We believe it is important to explore ways to create this space to improve collaborative opportunities for students. We suggest:




1. Conduct an audit of currently available space in Wulling Hall and how it can be made to better serve students, faculty and staff:


a. Determine what physical space is available in Wulling Hall.

b. Determine who and what groups are competing for space in Wulling Hall.

c. Prepare a cost analysis for repurposing spaces in Wulling Hall (Multiple Floors).

d. Consider how space redesign will be paid for and a timeline for each modification.


2. Consider administrative aspects for collaborative space:


a. Consider needs for an administrative team/group.

b. Consider the optimal make-up of an administrative team/group what should it do.

c. Consider steps needed to promote and support collaborative work.

d. Determine when an administrative group needs to be formed (should it take responsibility for planning the space).

e. Consider needs for a security system to safeguard equipment and the space.



The TRTG had the opportunity to learn about the design of collaborative spaces during its visit to the CoCo Minneapolis Co-working and Collaborative Space. Figure 1 below illustrates the unique collaborative space design at CoCo Minneapolis. In addition Table 1 and Figure 2, from EDUCAUSE’s (2006) Learning Spaces, highlights the importance of re-envisioning space in the 21st century to encourage collaboration, autonomy, mastery, and purpose. Labor market and social changes require a reconsideration of what is demanded of students and they are motivated (Pink, 2011).





Figure 1. CoCo Coworking space in Minneapolis, MN.

Source: CoCos Flickr Images (2010-2012)


Table 1. Features of contemporary common spaces.

Source: Brown and Long (2006)


Figure 2. Example of reconfigurable space.

Source: Gee (2006)

Innovation Lab: Potential Uses for a Collaborative Space


Promoting student leadership and entrepreneurial skills as well as increased student collaboration and maximizing the use of innovative technology.


The development of innovative ideas is often the result of an exchange of ideas and individuals’ intended or unintended collaboration. Without access to information it is difficult to build on the shoulders of giants. While a single person may not be sure how to best address the multiple steps of a complex challenge, by encouraging students to share their ideas with other students and faculty, abstract concepts can be prototyped, tested, refined, and implemented. Rather than solving problems individually, the lab will encourage students to organically organize into teams and intertwine their interests, ideas, skills, and objectives. Successful innovation often requires multiple roles and expertises (Kelly and Littman, 2005). To further innovation, promote great ideas, and solve current and future problems, it is important to provide a space that allows for the blending of thoughts, skills, and passions (Johnson, 2010).


A Virtual and Physical Bulletin Board:


We consider it important for students to regularly think outside the box and to have a way in which to express their ideas known through an open bulletin board, allowing them to potentially find interested peers. Finding one or two peers to collaborate with on a project may mean the difference between a successful start-up and an unfulfilled promise. Many writers, innovators, and entrepreneurs have benefited from collaborating with like-minded individuals or taking part in a mutually beneficial relationship. Openly sharing an idea allows it to be analyzed, criticized, and modified to better address its intended objectives (Kelly and Littman, 2005). We hope to encourage collaboration by placing a physical bulletin board within the collaborative space or in a common area within Wulling Hall. The purpose of such a bulletin board is to encourage students to share ideas at different stages of development and find co-innovators to partner with in looking for ways to address a challenge. As an OPLD initiative, only OLPD students will be able to post new ideas, while team members can include any student within the university, encouraging inter-departmental collaboration.


The bulletin board will also include a virtual component where students can post, or further develop ideas, at any time. The virtual bulletin board will also make it possible to search through a database of interesting ideas that have yet to be further developed. The innovation lab and the collaborative space will not be limited to the physical space of Wulling Hall, but we hope that it develops into a network that extends far beyond students’ time within the department. For privacy and copyright concerns, the virtual board will be password protected. A student-moderator, most likely a member of the collaborative space administration, will analyze students’ proposals and decide whether they violate the rules of the bulletin board. Ideas will not be discarded based on preference or feasibility rather students will be encouraged to think beyond the limitations of current conventions.


Figure 3. Three innovation boards at 3 institutions


All images


Benefiting from a Collaborative Space:


A technologically enhanced, organic, multifunctional space will encourage and enable students to brainstorm, discuss ideas, test and further develop projects. While the laboratory will not provide personal computers to its users, it will include technologies that help promote students’ creative thinking and imagination. Among these tools would be projectors and other technologies that facilitate the explanation of complex concepts and ideas and develop important media literacy skills. For example, the TRTG discussed the potential of acquiring a “padzilla” so that students can explore the potential of a table size, touchscreen tablet device (http://crunchylogistics.com/portfolio/padzilla-70-inchipadiphonecase/).


Various other technological gadgets and innovative tools that will be available for testing. The lab will also include a list of literature resources regarding the innovative process. The innovation lab will also benefit from the flexibility that the furniture of the collaborative space will provide. A new technological device may in a few years time become a common classroom technology.


Innovation Workshops


The innovation lab will host a series of workshops to discuss topics such as: the innovative process, the importance of innovation for society and education, and emerging innovations that have the potential to transform or modify education throughout the world. Students can also benefit from an “idea” series, or brown bag sessions, where participants will be invited to convey their ideas effectively to their peers in 10-20 minutes. The recent success of the Technology, Entertainment, and Design Conference (TED) in the diffusion of innovative ideas and information, is an example of the increased importance of video, and learning to convey ideas through multiple media formats effectively (Prensky, 2009).


In addition, the innovation lab will also provide a setting for a semester long innovation course that will allow students to invest additional time in co-produced projects. This course will be student led under the supervision of a faculty member. All participating students alternate and act as co-instructors emulating different faces of innovation (Kelly and Littman, 2005). Approval by students’ advisers will be required for course participation. The course will closely resemble an independent study, but emphasizing co-production and collaboration.


Recommendations for next steps:

1.       Survey students about their interest regarding an innovation lab and course. For example, preferred format (brief intensive courses or semester long courses, separate graduate-level/undergraduate or mixed groups, etc.)?

2.       Compile descriptions of administrative needs for innovation labs, workshops and courses.

3.       Compile descriptions of administrative needs for physical and virtual bulletin board.

4.       Produce an action plan for implementing innovation labs based on students’ interests.

5.       Produce a report of financial needs for collaborative space and innovation lab.

6.       Produce proposal for syllabus/academic needs for innovation lab (including intended audience, faculty and visiting instructors/facilitators).



 (Click here to see a video describing the Innovation Lab: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51sBkmSBN3U)


Proposed Collaborative Independent Study Course Within the Innovation Lab

The course described here will allow students to gain valuable experiences as part of a student-led group project. While students are sometimes able to join departmental projects, the number of opportunities is limited. It is often difficult for students to find the time to invest in student-led group projects while completing their course work and independent projects. Working on collaborative projects is an important 21st century skill. By encouraging the use of the collaborative space for group projects, students will be able to fulfill their academic requirements while improving on a number of valuable skills for the work place of tomorrow, including project management, conflict resolution, evaluation, and collaborative work.


Credit Hours: 1 (Optional)

Number of Students: 5 to 10

Course Grading: Pass or Fail (No A through F)

Prerequisite: Adviser’s Approval

Developed in Collaboration with Isaac Bolger (M.A. CIDE)


CEHD students learn about a wide number of innovative ideas within the field of education. There are, however, few opportunities for students to go beyond the textbook and develop projects that can impact the local and global community during their studies at the University of Minnesota. This course will provide CEHD students an opportunity to expand on their innovative ideas in collaboration with other students within the school of education. They will develop projects relating to their interests and contribute to other projects being developed by their peers.  Having a very capable, highly educated and self-motivated group of students, this laboratory will serve as an empowering space, where individuals learn to develop, collaborate on, and implement innovative projects, transforming and improving society. The course will promote the regular discussion of ideas. The physical and virtual bulletin board discussed previously will provide a forum where ideas can be visualized and discussed by all the course members. Through the bulletin board, students will be able to share their innovative ideas and obtain feedback and support for their concepts from other students. Everyone will be encouraged to promote various ideas throughout the course of the semester. Students will be able to submit these ideas either openly or anonymously. As a number of ideas are explored and refined, every year the most captivating ideas would be co-pursued. Students can either choose to collaborate on a particular project or use the space to develop their own unique idea. New flexible learning possibilities (see Figure 5) transform the traditional conceptualization of learning spaces and allow for the incorporation of audio-visual production technologies, and augmented reality capabilities (Ally, 2009)

This course will be located in Wulling Hall where students will have access to examples of educational technology available on the market (such as the Kno, Nook, Kindle, $100 laptop, etc). Students may occasionally meet outside of campus to visit other innovative learning spaces. The space will include whiteboards, bulletin boards, conference tables, and small workspaces. There will be areas where students can pin up photos, physical articles, as well as other physical objects related to education. There will also be a powerful computer set up providing access to innovative and thought-provoking educational software. Through the use of collaborative web services, such as Moodle, Ning, and Facebook, students will be able to communicate and discuss, not only within the confines of the physical laboratory, but with people anywhere in the world. Innovative ideas will be prototyped every year and successful ideas will be continued and expanded after the end of the semester. Particular attention will be given to national and international educational innovation competitions. The class will consist of 2 hours/week for 7 weeks and can be re-taken (for up to 3 credits) for students wishing to undertake larger projects. Students will not be required to sign up for credit to be engaged. Yet, students will be required to apply to be admitted into the laboratory.


Figure 5. Flexible Learning Network


Source: Peters, 2007


Some of the topics that may be discussed include:


  • the impact of incentives on students’ motivation,
  • the growing use of open educational resources (OER),
  • the “gamification” of education,
  • rapid growth and spread of online education,
  • growing use of blended learning,
  • one computer (tablet, laptop) per student initiatives,
  • the implications of cloud computing,
  • intersections between formal, informal, non-formal and serendipitous learning,
  • mobile learning,
  • invisible learning,
  • the impact of innovative design,
  • diversity within the charter school movement,
  • the movement towards a personalized education,
  • increased access to educational material outside of traditional education settings and its implications for lifelong learning and its impact on formal schooling,


There are numerous other innovative education policies currently being discussed and implemented in different communities and countries across the world that can be added to this list. Students will be evaluated based on their attendance, their contributions to the innovation lab, and on a final report and presentation.


Technology Showcase


Technology Redesign Symposium: Event Summary

Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD)


Like the flame of Franklin’s candle, both ideas and their expressions can now be given without being given away. This ability to give expressions of knowledge without giving them away provides us with an unprecedented capacity to share—and thus an unprecedented ability to educate. (Wiley, 2010) – Openness as Catalyst for an Educational Reformation


Digital technology offers numerous opportunities for collaboration, creativity, and academic assistance. Products evolve and new applications are created at a rapid pace. The Technology Redesign Symposium offered an opportunity for OLPD students and faculty to share what they have accomplished with digital technology in their scholarly, intellectual, and creative endeavors. The primary purpose of this event was to highlight the many ways that students, faculty and staff within the department currently use technology. Additionally, this symposium facilitated conversations around collaborative spaces that support technology and best practices within the OLPD community. By sharing our ideas and experiences virtually or in a physical space we can contribute to the transfer of helpful information and the improvement of society.


Students and faculty were invited to share their accomplishments with digital technology. The categories of presentations and presenters were:


  • Moodle – Lou Quast
  • Citation Tools, Zotero – Heidi Eschenbacher
  • Choosing a Platform for Online Focus Groups – Joe Wohkittel
  • Online Focus Groups – Alison Link and Patrick O’Leary from Dr. Krueger’s class
  • Authoring and Publishing iBooks – John Moravec
  • Top 10 iPad Apps for College Students – Andrew Plovanich
  • Mobile Devices and Informal Learning – Alfonso Sintjago (See slides in Appendix 2)
  • Research Presentation on iPads in Secondary School Classrooms – Kit Alviz
  • Google+ Hangout – Kit Alviz


Students, staff, and faculty of OLPD were invited to view presentations and speak individually with presenters to learn about the technology tools and practices at the symposium. Approximately 40 individuals responded to email invitations, flyers, and other advertisements about the symposium to share a technology-rich learning experience. The event’s structure allowed for a close and mutually beneficial exchange between presenters and attendees. It would be beneficial to continue hosting this showcase on a yearly basis.



The Technology Redesign Symposium took place on Friday, March 23, 2012 from 2-4PM in the Science and Technology Student Services (STSS) building, room 420B. This room provided an ideal environment for a technology showcase due to the round table working stations, ample electrical outlets, and hook-ups to flat screen televisions. Presenters brought their own devices to set up on a working station.


The Office of the Dean of CEHD generously contributed a new iPad to be raffled off at the end of the technology symposium. The winner was Nicole Murray (B.A. student in BME, OLPD).


Nicole Murray (B.A. student in BME, OLPD) won a brand new iPad.

Technology Survey


Three questions were posed during the Technology Redesign Symposium and again in the evaluation of the event.

I. Technology is evolving quickly and classroom culture needs to reflect those changes. What do you suggest for etiquette, best practices, and policies for the use of technology in the classroom?


Participant responses fell into two categories:


A. Establishing Norms: Technological devices can be a wonderful asset to a student, but they can also be distracting. Thus, norms or rules of engagement about the use of technology need to be established between the students and the professor.


B. Professor’s Responsibility: Most participants responded that professors should incorporate or continue to utilize technology in pedagogy for a variety of reasons: to make the classroom more interactive, to promote dialogue, and to prepare students to be successful in their future work environments. One interesting comment was that technology should appear naturally in the classroom and not be forced. Participants also recognize that having the time to learn and attend trainings about technology is an obstacle for professors.

II. How can technical support be improved? And what topics need the most support?


The participants offered a very wide variety of responses to this question. Some responses were about learning opportunities, while others were more specific requests.


A. Technology learning opportunities:

Participants would like more opportunities to learn about applications and programs, specifically in small training sessions. Trainings for professors should continue and focus on establishing a value of technology; how can technology improve learning or the classroom environment?


B. Specific recommendations:

-Help students with organization via citation managers

-Help professors transform online learning to become more interactive

-Have a scholarship search through OneStop

-Have a supply of Mac chargers on reserve for graduate assistants

-Establish an event calendar



III. How would you envision a new collaborative space for OLPD students? And what would you like to see in it?


Participants want to feel a sense of community, a place on campus that is their own and where they can work, meet their peers, and collaborate with their colleagues. Large round tables, private work areas, an announcement board, coffee machines, fridges, are Internet access are some of the things they want to have access to in a space like this. Participants like the idea of having a student-led space to share resources and referrals, work together to discuss tech issues, and provide peer counseling and advising.



Innovative Uses of the iPad

“Education is deep in Apple’s DNA” – Quote from Apple Education Event

Philip W. Schiller – Introducing iBooks 2 and iTunes U (January 19, 2012)


There are many uses for iPads in the classroom. They can replace paper copy textbooks, advanced apps make schoolwork more efficient and effective (Educause, 2011), in combination with Apple’s iTunes U, which allows instructors to upload audio and video to iTunes, students’ access to lectures and other materials are greatly increased (http://www.apple.com/education/itunesu/). There are currently over 500,000 free lectures, books, videos, and other resources in iTunes U, exploring thousands of subjects.


CEHD’s Open Textbook Catalog (https://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/) demonstrates the growing interest in, and availability of, digital textbooks.  Digital textbooks can potentially lower the cost of textbooks and they are convenient for students. Students can carry all of their textbooks and notes on an iPad, as opposed to only a few because of the weight and size. Students can effortlessly print out lists of quotes, and use embedded interactive infographics, audio-visuals, and social elements. For an example of what is now possible with digital textbooks visit: http://ourchoicethebook.com/.


The iTunes store contains numerous useful apps for students, ex. for taking notes, storing and transferring files, reading books and articles, making and viewing presentations, recording audio, and much more. Some of students’ novel uses of available apps include photographing notes on boards in class, syncing notes to their account to make them available on other computers and devices, and recording lectures to be played back at a later time for optimal studying. Other applications include gamification concepts to increase student motivation and engagement (Bobo Explores Light – http://goo.gl/wdqif).

Like students, faculty can also benefit considerably from using iPads in their work. It is expected that most access to the Internet by 2015 will be from mobile devices (IDC, 2015). As previously stated, faculty are able to use iTunes U to upload audio and video for students to access outside of the classroom. iTunes U course materials are shared privately or publicly. Publicly shared courses benefit students and scholars worldwide and increase visibility for the university and the faculty (Bonk, 2009; Walsh, 2010). For faculty who choose to take attendance, applications have been developed to track this. Other faculty uses of iPads include, lecture planning, recording lectures, and reading scholarly articles. In addition, innovative uses of the iPad have been documented by the CEHD iPad, Mobile Learning Initiative, illustrating their potential benefits for data visualization, storytelling assignments, instant surveying, photo-essays, etc. (http://www.cehd.umn.edu/mobile/Projects/).

Through our personal experience, research, and CEHD investigations, we believe that careful consideration of how iPads can be used in education will help OLPD redesign how technology is used within the department in general. Outcomes of CEHD iPad research (see “Useful Links” below) are very useful in this regard. Additionally, the TRTG has outlined a draft framework for evaluating iPad apps for use within the department (see Appendix 3).


Using various whiteboard, flashcard, and educational apps we have found an easier and more efficient way to study. With over 500,000 applications in iOS, and over 200,000 for the iPad alone, this technology allows students to create effective personalized learning networks and join relevant virtual learning communities.


Useful Links:


CEHD iPad Research Findings – http://www.cehd.umn.edu/mobile/About.html

EDCAUSE iPad Related Articles – http://www.educause.edu/Resources/Browse/iPad/37605

PEW The Rise of E-Reading –http://libraries.pewinternet.org/2012/04/04/theriseofereading/

Technology Proficiency Expectations for OLPD Faculty

Increasingly, people access information and educational materials through the Internet. The quality of available information and the extent of document digitization are growing. Journals, books, newspapers and other information providers are increasingly embracing digitalization, not only as a form of diversification, but as a way to increase their influence and relevance among their target audiences. ICT greatly decreases the cost of duplicating and transferring information (Friedman, 2007). Most courses today provide access to e-readings and as digitalization continues this trend will likely strengthen. The high use of technology by youth, can act as a catalyst for faculty members in prioritizing the importance of understanding their students’ preferences and technology related behaviors.


With the average youth texting over 100 times a day, and many of them accessing most of their media through the Internet and working collaboratively on documents online, the familiarization with these technologies can help improve the learning experience for current and future students (Smith, 2011). The International Society for Technology and Education (ISTE) has regularly revisited a list of skills that students (NETS-S) and faculty members (NETS-T) would benefit from strengthening. We support this assertion and also encourage the consideration of the eventual development of a basic set of skills (ISTE, 2008). As illustrated in Figure 6, the NETS-T focus on broad skills development, emphasizing constant change, yet conservative in failing to emphasize the increasing speed of these changes.


Figure 6. Teaching skills in the digital age.

Source: ISTE-T, 2008.



NETS for Teachers (2008) – Digital Age Teaching Standards


ISTE (2008) recommends that faculty “facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity” (ISTE, 2008, Pg. 1) by promoting innovative thinking, exploring real-world issues, using collaborative tools, and modeling collaborative knowledge construction by engaging students in face-to-face and virtual environments. It also recommends that faculty “develop digital-age learning experiences and assessments” (ibid, Pg. 1) by incorporating digital tools or resources, enable to pursuit of individual curiosity, address student diverse learning styles, and provide students with varied formative and summative assessments.


Furthermore, ISTE (2008) recommends that faculty “model digital-age work and learning” (ibid, Pg. 1) by demonstrating fluency in technology systems and adaptability, using digital tools and resources to support student success, effectively communicating to students using a variety of digital age media formats, and demonstrating to students how to effectively find and use information. Faculty should also “promote and model digital citizenship and responsibility”  (ibid, Pg. 1) by teaching and advocating the ethical use of digital information and technology, using learner-centered strategies while providing equitable access, promoting and modeling digital etiquette and developing and modeling cultural understanding.


Finally, ISTE (2008) encourages faculty to “engage in professional growth and leadership” (ibid, Pg. 2) by participating in global and local learning communities, demonstrating a vision of technology infusion, reflecting on current research and professional practice, while  contributing to the effectiveness and self-renewal of the teaching profession. The elements highlighted within the NEST-Teacher document are some of the strengths that we hope faculty continuously improve and are expected of future faculty. As ISTE (2008) recommends, students would also benefit from developing various ICT related skills highlighted in the NETS-Student publication.


A current competency test required for some educators that could be considered as a template for requirements of OLPD faculty and staff is the Internet and Computing Core Certification or IC3 Certification. Below we included its broader standards. We hope that faculty members respond positively to these suggestions and consider requiring the equivalent of a certificate of technological competence to the Department’s teaching staff after a number of years of obtaining a position. In collaboration with CEHD Academic Technology Services and the Office of Information Technology, faculty members are able to attend a number of free courses helping them improve their ICT skills (http://www.oit.umn.edu/training). Technology changes quickly, and it is expected to continue changing. Having a strong appeal to youth, mastering technology can help to captivate them and help them learn more effectively.

Internet and Computing Core Certification Requirements

Computing Fundamentals


Computer Hardware – Identify types of computer and the functions of components. Basic troubleshooting of computer hardware and identifying key factors when purchasing computer equipment.

Software – Identify different types of software, and how it relates to the hardware and how it is upgraded.

Using an Operating System – Identify the basic functions and problems of an operating system. Knowing how to operate a Mac, a PC, a mobile device, and the installation and removal of programs.

Key Applications


Common Program Functions – Know how to start an application and find its help documentation. Perform common editing and printing functions.

Word Processing Functions – Be able to format documents, including document commenting, the creation of tables and auto-formatting tools.

Spreadsheet Functions – Create and modify data within a worksheet. Sorting data and using basic formulas, functions, and graphic options.

Presentation Software Functions – Creating and editing basic presentations. Become familiar with different presentation tools that are currently used by educators.

Living Online


Networks and the Internet – Identify key benefits and risks of computer networks. Understand the relationship between computer networks and other communication networks.

Electronic Mail – Familiarization with the basic elements of “netiquette”. Overview of the basic functions of email applications.

Using the Internet – Familiarization with web browsers and applications. Overview of blogs, wikis, apps, rss feeds and search engines.

Using Mobile Devices* – Identify the benefits of texting and mobile devices. Familiarization with the educational possibilities of mobile technologies.  (Added by TTF)

Moving Forward


ISTE and IC3 are shared as recommendations of what could be expected of incoming faculty and competencies that could be strengthened by the current faculty of OLPD. The effective use of technology can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of teaching and learning. In addition, these are skills that students increasingly expect of their instructors, and which will be required of them by the future job market.

Useful Links:


ISTE – Effective Teacher Model –




Internet and Computing Core Certification – IC3



Continuous Evaluation and Discussion

The rapidly changing nature of technology and its broad impact on society and education encourages us to remain attentive to current technological developments and to constantly evaluate and brainstorm their potential relevance and impact on OLPD, local and global education futures. As illustrated by the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework, for students to most benefit from a learning environment, an instructor must utilize current and effective technological, pedagogical, and content skills (Koehler & Mishra 2008, Mishra and Koehler 2006). Balancing the complex relationships between content, pedagogy and technological knowledge can improve the pedagogical practice of an instructor.


Technology often poses a “wicked problem” (Koehler & Mishra 2008, Pg. 3), as it often changes at a faster rate than content and pedagogical knowledge. Flexibility and understanding the “affordances and constraints” (ibid, Pg. 6) of various technologies can improve the design of a module. Instructional designers must consider each technology’s propensities and biases, whether it is an old technology such as a blackboard, or a newer technology such as Twitter or other microblogging technologies, a technology that was recently named the top internet-based technology according to an annual poll by the Center for Learning and Performance Technologies (http://www.c4lpt.co.uk/)


The rapidly changing nature of technology supports the continued evaluation of OLPD’s adoption and successful use of technology. Focusing on program improvement, we believe that a yearly formative evaluation that includes an annual data collection process will provide the department with the necessary information to improve their ability to analyze how technology needs are being addressed by the department, student satisfaction with the level of technology application and support, and how the initiative is contributing to the preparation of students for their future professional careers. A formative evaluation allows for program improvement (Fitzpatrick et al., 2011). As the importance of technology is not expected to wane, it is critical to invest resources in the continued improvement of its utilization.


A summative evaluation for specific initiatives may be conducted after the first couple of years of a particular project (the innovation lab, the adoption of open textbooks, a one-to-one tablet adoption program, etc), helping to determine which particular initiatives suggested by this task force and other OLPD specific ICT initiatives should be continued, restructured, or terminated. A summative evaluation of initiatives can be conducted on a biannual basis, utilizing both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. This evaluation component can be student-driven, providing OLPD students an opportunity to apply evaluation skills. Specific questions for these evaluations are currently being formulated. We expect the collaborative space, the innovation lab, the technology showcase, and different technology seminars to improve over time as a result of these evaluations.


The first year of a program implementation may face unexpected circumstances, as concepts and ideas are transferred from planning to implementation. An ambitious but realistic timetable for these changes will benefit the initial success of the project. Feedback from an internal formative evaluation should result in continuous improvement. Yearly questions may include topics such as: what elements of the program are currently working most successfully? What elements need further improvement? What elements were not addressed that are a concern of OLPD’s student body? How can elements of the program be improved for a limited funding infusion (cost-benefit analysis)? In addition to these, other questions may include a measurement of student satisfaction with these initiatives, and a measurement of students’ satisfaction with the provisions of the collaborative space. As Figure 7 illustrates, the project will re-adapt itself to the needs of OLPD students.


Figure 7. Iterative evaluation process.

(UW-Madison – Technology Solutions for Teaching and Research)


The student-led evaluation will utilize diverse methodologies including focus group methodology, interviews, surveys, and observations. An analysis of long-term cost-effectiveness of the project components would also be beneficial in evaluating this initiative (Levin & McEwan, 2000). Increasing student achievement and satisfaction, contributing to the development of research projects (collaborative and independent), establishing a collaborative culture, and helping to better prepare students for the job market are at the core of this project. We also hope that, through the project workshops and the available equipment, that students will have opportunities to improve their digital and information literacy skills, while also working with cutting-edge technologies and methodologies. With the growing importance of information and communication technologies, this will help improve students’ capacity to use technology effectively during their graduate studies while developing the skills that will help them succeed in a rapidly changing and technologically driven future.


There are a remarkable abundance of information and communications technologies and other technologies available to individuals in OLPD. Staff and faculty generally have access to computers (desktops, laptops, and tablets) through the department while students are well equipped with their own personal devices. Furthermore, the department has access to a range of peripheral devices, such as network services, printers, and a couple of whiteboards. Furthermore, the University of Minnesota provides a range of support services related to the everyday usage of such technologies to students, faculty, and staff. What is absent within the department in terms of technology is support for, and opportunities to, explore novel uses of existing and emerging technologies which are generally not covered by existing support services within the department or the university. The TRTG therefore chose to focus its attention on ways that the department can promote active innovation and sharing of experiences and existing knowledge about effective uses of technology.


The TTG’s Technology Showcase event revealed that there is considerable interest in using technology in novel ways and demonstrated excellent examples of how students, faculty, and staff are using technology. Currently, however, whether technology is used in novel ways is highly dependent on an individual’s personal interest and technological prowess. There are few opportunities for individuals who are experimenting with technology to share their experiences with colleagues and even fewer opportunities to engage in collaborative exploration of new possibilities afforded by technology and the development of skills needed to realize them.


The lack of opportunities to explore the novel uses of technology is, in part, due to the organization of physical space available to students, faculty, and staff within the department which is not conducive to collaborative activities. Meeting rooms are small and need to be booked well in advance to ensure that activities will not be disrupted. Large blocks of space have been arranged in a very cramped and compartmentalized manner, in particular the graduate assistants’ cubicle spaces on the 4th floor of Wulling Hall, which are underused. Available technologies are spread among meeting rooms and classrooms with seemingly little thought to how they might be used. For example, some meeting spaces have no projector, one meeting room has an interactive whiteboard, and students’ access to the department’s printers is very limited.  Consequently, there is little chance for groups within the department’s currently available space to engage in collaborative activities, especially in impromptu, unstructured activities, because any such endeavor needs to be planned in advance and in considerable detail to ensure access to all needed resources.


In light of insufficient support services for innovative uses of technology in OLPD and the university as a whole, the TRTG is of the view that the department should work to harness the abundance of enthusiasm, experience, and knowledge present in its students, faculty and staff. The department can use resources already available to create an environment that encourages and incentivizes sharing of knowledge and experience. For example, by considering how available space may be organized to be more conducive to collaboration, and by offering opportunities to participate in creative innovation labs as part of students’ coursework.



The TTG’s recommendations, as they relate to each relevant theme explored by the TTG, are listed at the end of each of the preceding chapters of the report. In addition to those recommendations, the TRTG strongly recommends that there be an ongoing student-led technology task group. OLPD students bring a broad range of experiences and knowledge to the department. Many of the department’s students have worked with technology in various educational settings and have a keen sense of the possibilities offered by current and emerging technologies. In the near future, one of the primary tasks of the TRTG will be to follow up on the recommendations in this report. Future TTGs will also continue to monitor technological developments, consider their usefulness for OLPD, and make recommendations to the department when such needs arise. Future iterations of the TRTG will be supervised by a faculty member and work in close collaboration with relevant institutes within the department, in particular the Leapfrog Institutes and the Jandris Center for Innovative Higher Education.


Many of the recommendations made in this report will require significant planning and action over the next year. However, some can be acted on immediately, in particular the recommendations regarding the use of available space in Wulling Hall. The TRTG suggests that considerations concerning the use of the space and technology already available to OLPD students start in the Summer, 2012 with the aim of having at least one area within Wulling Hall available to students that incorporates some of the elements of a collaborative space as described in this report.


Prospective Timeline

Summer 2012


  • Begin transformation of graduate assistants’ area in 410 Wulling Hall to a collaborative space under the leadership of CIDE faculty and students

○      Discussion of OLPD space use and utility by students

○      Consideration of layout and furniture possibilities


Fall 2012


  • Appoint new TRTG
  • Ongoing discussion of OLPD space use and utility by students
  • TRTG to meet with the representatives of Leapfrog Institute and Jandris Center to explore possibilities for collaboration
  • Identify possibilities for funding, and developing a budget
  • TRTG to work with at least one faculty member to develop an innovation lab and course
  • TRTG to develop an improved Technology Showcase based on participants experiences of the Spring, 2012 showcase
  • TRTG work with faculty to pilot initiative to increase use of mobile technology in OLPD


Spring 2013


  • Remodeling and purchase of equipment for the collaborative space
  • First offering of a student led collaborative study course
  • Start of mobile technology grad. student pilot project.
  • OLPD Technology Showcase – 2nd Year
  • Survey and additional data collection about recent changes


Summer 2013


  • Formative Evaluation Report on the activities carried out by the TRTG during academic year 2012-13 to OLPD faculty
  • Completion of remodeling of collaborative space
  • Planning for TRTG 3rd year (2013-2014)


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Appendix 1.

OLPD Technology Redesign Task Group


Charge statement


The Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development is a leader in advancing knowledge about educational and organizational change in local, national, and international contexts. Our research, teaching, and outreach reflect a commitment to interdisciplinary and intercultural engagement with educators, scholars, and policy makers seeking to enhance leadership, policy, and development around the globe.


The College of Education and Human Development and OLPD are committed toward supporting technology-enhanced learning. To this end, OLPD is appointing a five-member Technology Redesign Task Group to think creatively about how to use technology to enhance the educational experiences of OLPD students.  In addition, the department’s technology innovations coordinator is appointed to serve as an ex-officio member of the task group.




To create a list of actionable recommendations OLPD may act on to enhance educational experiences of its students through the use of technologies. Imaginative, creative, and innovative approaches to using technologies are encouraged. The task group should develop its own statement of objectives to help facilitate its work.


Scope of work


The five students selected to co-lead this initiative will participate in a series of meetings through spring term 2012, collaborate on a recommendations report, and present their recommendations to the OLPD faculty. Activities should include the following:

  • Develop a work plan to complete its assignments
  • Develop specific, actionable recommendations that the department may take to enhance the educational experiences of OLPD students
  • Solicit information and consider suggestions from the OLPD community
  • If necessary, form sub-task groups from the task group members to complete tasks


The work of the task group must be completed by May 12, 2012, when its final recommendations will be presented to the faculty at a department meeting.


Appendix 2

Mobile Devices and Informal Learning













Appendix 3.

Draft Framework for the Evaluation of Educational Apps (Apps/Tools, Etc.)


Technical Considerations

  • Is it cross platform?
  • Consider field testing with students in the course in which it will be used
  • Even if it’s new, the reliability will depend on the provider. There will also likely be early adopters online who will report on how it worked.

○      related to the above, is there an exit strategy? (i.e. what happens if the provider ends the service? Do we have an alternative?)

  • Are computers in your labs compatible? Will you need to upgrade s/w in order to use it? Are students’ devices compatible? (I guess I’m thinking s/w and not tech)
  • Can students learn to use it quickly?
  • Can instructors learn it quickly?
  • Can it be used by students and instructors who have slow Internet connections?
  • Does it have good published help information both when questions arise and for learning to use it. We recently bought 25 licenses for Camtasia Studio 7 for faculty to use and the tutorials are great.
  • Will information be secure? What are the risks to confidentiality?
  • Is the technology sustainable or will it be replaced with something new within a short period of time?

Logistical Considerations

  • Is it free?
  • Time intensity and ease of use.
  • Will there be advance notice of updates and new versions and are there costs involved?
  • How regularly is it updated?
  • Is there online support either from the provider or on a blog or similar resource? Is there a good manual?
  • Does it require students to sign up for an account?
  • Does it require installation of an app or other software on students’ or the lab computer? (This is more of a problem for those dependent on support people controlling what s/w can be installed and on situations where the support people have to do the installation, but I know it applies to at least one ETW participant.)
  • How does the technology interact with other programs or applications?


Pedagogical Considerations

  • Begin with the principle that “Technology is not the point, learning is” and have that guide our use of any tool.
  • How does it increase and/or facilitate learning? or is it just fun?
  • Can the same function be achieved without the technology?
  • What types of student centered and/or collaborative activities can this technology facilitate?
  • What levels of learning are facilitated by this technology, i.e. from initial knowledge acquisition to higher level problem solving and thinking skills?
  • If the purpose is to facilitate learning, what approach does the s/w use?
  • Is it to be used individually or in groups? If in groups, does it provide students guidance to carry out the tasks?
  • What support documents or guidelines will the instructor need to create to guide students through learning activities while using this technology?
  • Is it the right tool for the job? There are lots of programs available that do many of the same things, but all are not equal. The selection criteria ought to first consider how well this particular tool will help students accomplish the learning task.

○      alternatively, are there existing guidelines already available online that students and instructors can use?

  • Does the software really provide the benefit you’re looking for or does other current software/hardware do just as well. New isn’t necessarily best. The old saying about old wine in new bottles actually may apply.
  • Good technology is not necessarily good pedagogy.
  • Can instructors evaluate in a fair and cost-effective manner the level of participation, effort exerted, and learning outcomes of individual and/or groups of students?


  • Can it be adapted to accommodate students with physical disabilities?
  • Can it be adapted to accommodate students with learning disabilities?
  • Does it require access to devices (i.e. smartphone, iPad) that are cost-prohibitive to some students?
  • Is it cross platform?
  • Can it be accessed by people who have slow Internet connection speeds?
  • Is it available to people without U of M X500 – for workshops and courses offered outside of the traditional U of M courses for the public?


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