Faculty members are invited to submit proposals for a Faculty Instructional Technology Fellowship. The fellowship is designed to support faculty members seeking to substantially incorporate digital technologies into a new or existing course that they will be teaching in the 2019-2020 academic year. Proposals are due by March 11, 2019.
Fellows will work primarily through the summer to (re)design the course with close support from Academic ITS staff. The FIT Fellows will also meet as a group with each other and Academic ITS staff three times during the summer to share experiences and discuss challenges. In an effort to gauge the effect of the technological enhancements, FIT Fellows will include a question relevant to their fellowship in the course evaluation of their (re)designed course. Also, FIT Fellows will be prepared to share their experiences with other colleagues in an effort to broaden the program over time.
While you are welcome to submit proposals incorporating a wide variety of technologies, we especially encourage proposals for 2019-2020 that would make use of:
1. Classroom capture (sometimes called lecture capture)
A few classrooms at the College were recently equipped with digital video cameras capable of recording activities during class meetings. This idea to digitally record lectures for later streaming was popularized and refined from the early 2000s on by MIT’s OpenCourseWare initiative and has since led a number of technology companies to produce and market turnkey solutions for in-room camera control to video delivery.
Less explored is how classroom capture may be useful in the teaching and learning experience at residential liberal arts colleges. We invite FIT proposals that would investigate how the technology may be effectively applied in our environment. In particular, we seek proposals on topics such as:
- How students enrolled in a course may use recordings to review class material
- How in-class note taking and participation is influenced by the availability of recordings
- How availability of class recordings can enhance inclusive pedagogy
2. Mule Works Innovation Lab
We seek to learn more about how these technologies may be used in a more sustained way inside and outside of the Lab throughout the duration of a semester-long course. While creating an individual project for a course has proven popular with several faculty and students, we would also like to encourage creating experiences that engage a class in progressively more complex projects over the course of a semester. We invite FIT proposals that would:
- Use digital fabrication and/or VR/AR technologies in ways that engage students in course content through the duration of the semester
- Consider ways that these technologies may be used not only in the Lab in Miller but how they may be used in a classroom environment or as a means of civic engagement
- Develop approaches and learnings goals in using these resources that may be generalized to other courses and disciplines
3. Schupf Lab Visualization wall
A large-scale visualization wall was installed recently in the Schupf Scientific Computing Center (Schupf Lab) located in Olin 019. Large-scale visualization walls can render very high resolution images such that viewers are able to easily examine fine details like brush strokes in a painting or the background features on an illustration in a manuscript. Large Geographic Information Systems (GIS) spatial data sets may be viewed, real-time scientific imaging from analytical instruments may be displayed during class meetings, and large or complex data sets may be represented in a way that, in some configurations, viewers may manipulate them with a touch or a gesture. The Schupf Lab wall is configured to permit not just instructors to be able to display their computer screen but for multiple students in the Lab to be able to simultaneously share their screens.
We seek FIT proposals that investigate how we may better understand the persuasive and expressive potential of this state-of-the-art visualization tool and how it may be effectively used in the teaching and learning experience in our environment. We are particularly interested in topics such as:
- Whether certain content may be taught more effectively given the availability of more advanced visualization options
- How students may be engaged differently in a classroom setting when there is the technology and screen real estate available to permit them to share or contribute their work to the larger class
- How and what kinds of diagrams, images, animations, video, or motion graphics, or other visualization techniques may be employed most effectively in the Schupf Lab setting
More generally, the Fellows program encourages (re)designing of courses to:
- Increase faculty experience with technology as a tool to solve instructional challenges rather than an add-on to current practice.
- Encourage robust use of technology that engages student learning in multiple modes (visual literacy, active learning, collaborative and constructivist pedagogies). An initial focus would develop the use of video and other visual media.
- Develop opportunities for student research as part of technology-supported curricular experiences or through student participation in the development of technology-supported pedagogy.
- Explore how to make the most of the increase in face-to-face class instructional time gained through flipped classroom approaches that engages students in active learning.
- Support peer-to-peer instruction and group projects that develop independent problem solving and critical thinking skills.
Increase opportunities for asynchronous study and learning through the use of short video, lecture capture, voice-over Powerpoint.
- Develop pedagogy around bring your own device (BYOD) classroom experiences. The College has made significant investments in wireless network infrastructure and nearly all students have devices that can take advantage of it.
Proposals will be reviewed and selected by faculty peers who have recently completed projects similar to those listed above. Up to three proposals may be selected this year.
Fellows will receive a stipend of $2,500 for their work. Limited additional money will be available to Fellows for ancillary technology equipment or software.
Please feel free to consult with Jason Parkhill or other Academic ITS colleagues to talk through your proposal before submission. Past experience suggests that these advance consultations lead to stronger proposals.