This presentation was originally given at a cross-institutional meeting of Ontario Council of Academic Vice-Presidents (OCAV), an affiliate association of The Council of Ontario Universities. I was asked to discuss the challenges and opportunities regarding faculty development and how to content with technology change in today’s universities.
While this presentation is three years old, I used the metaphor Ceci n’est pas une Powerpoint (ppt) to get at a simple idea: people still firmly believe that technology is something that wasn’t around when they were born. They take the technology as being reality, and not what it is, technology: an artifice. It’s a superficial metaphor, but it’s funny.
I also tried to address some assumptions like the Digital Native/Digital Immigrant discussion, which I don’t think this is exclusively true. Some of the students have absolutely dismal technology skills. The students who do know a bit of Photoshop often have no grasp of some of the underlying concepts. It’s true that many of the students have become consistent users of desktop computers and the internet, so they are much less baffled by the “Start Menu” or what a CD is, but they also don’t have some of the fundamentals that allows them to extend their knowledge
As well, not all Faculty fit the stereotype. I think we have to spend time with our technological leaders within the faculty to see where the edges are to our technology interests, but we should also look at users who are not on the bleeding edge but are just investigating technology use and observe their patterns for ways forward at your institution.