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American Higher Education in Crises book cover

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Join Keynoters Goldie Blumenstyck (Chronicle of Higher Education) and Phil Hill and Michael Feldstein (MindWires Consulting)

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22st Annual OLC International Conference
November 16-18, 2016 | Orlando, Florida | Walt Disney World Swan/Dolphin Resort

OLC Innovate 2016 - Innovations in Blended and Online Learning
April 20-22, 2016 | New Orleans, LA | Sheraton New Orleans Hotel

Sous Chefs & Apprentices: Coaching, Mentoring & Training Future Instructional Technology Experts

Mariann Hawken (University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), USA)
Session Information
October 16, 2015 - 10:45am
Faculty and Professional Development & Support
Major Emphasis of Presentation: 
Practical Application
Institutional Level: 
Universities and Four Year Institutions
Audience Level: 
Session Type: 
Information Session
Northern Hemisphere C
Session Duration: 
45 Minutes
Concurrent Session 10

Whether formally trained, job seasoned, or guided by friendly experts, faculty and staff benefit from learning, practicing, and growing through new models of professional development.

Extended Abstract

Once, we were all beginners and asked the question: Where do I go to learn how to be an instructional technology expert? Take a class? Join a listserv? Network with others? Trial and error? How did YOU learn to be an instructional technology expert?

Coaching and mentoring ensures the maximization of our technology and training investments and passes on best practices, knowledge, skills and experiences. All too often the knowledge or skills will reside with one or two people within a single department isolated from the rest of the institution. Encouraging cross-collaboration and skill building, especially between faculty and staff, ensures distribution of knowledge, reduces silos of self-contained resources, and boosts camaraderie. By the end of the session, participants will be able to describe strategies used to mentor faculty and/or staff in academic & technical areas; identify non-traditional professional development training & experiences for faculty and/or staff; and create a scaffold for these training opportunities & experiences.

This session will benefit instructional technologists, instructional designers, LMS admins, support staff, and faculty. After reviewing both staff and faculty perspectives with current coaching and mentoring efforts, we will share a functional approach to training future instructional technology "sous chefs," or faculty and staff experts, at Bowie State University and University of Maryland, Baltimore County. What initially began as simple conversations and demonstrations about instructional technology and teaching expanded into more opportunities to train faculty support with specific systems during a comprehensive training institute. Coaching allowed senior instructional technology specialists to pass on front-end LMS knowledge to two junior instructional technology specialists. The effort expanded to include mentoring best practices, encouraging self-sufficiency, and fostering engagements with vendors to expand opportunities for professional communication and technical support. Further strategies discussed will include building trust, setting boundaries, establishing goals, monitoring progress as well as different types of training, coaching, and mentoring experiences during the workday and beyond. We will also identify secondary benefits to faculty and to administrators such as cross-training for future advancement and building peer support networks.

Whether formally trained, seasoned on the job, or guided by a friendly expert, faculty and staff seeking to deepen their knowledge can benefit from multiple opportunities to learn, practice, and grow through a new model of professional development.

Lead Presenter

A self-proclaimed Jane of All Trades, Mariann Hawken is an instructional technology specialist at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She oversees several Blackboard applications including Learn and Collaborate and provides secondary support for clickers and screencasting.

Mariann enjoys faculty training and outreach, course development activities, and academic transformation efforts. Her presentation experience includes distance education policy development, faculty development and online course support, mentoring and training, migrating systems to managed hosting, and other technical experiences. Past activities include developing comprehensive faculty development programs for online/hybrid course development and supporting course redesign projects that reflect Quality Matters and Exemplary Course standards.

With more than 15 years of experience in educational technology, Mariann holds a Master of Distance Education, specializing in teaching and training; a Master of Education in Instructional Technology; and a Master of Arts in English. She’s taught traditional, hybrid and online courses in freshman composition, technical writing, intro to mass communication, and media, technology & society.