Submitted by Leanna Giancarlo
Present: Rosemary Arneson, Hall Cheshire, Leanna Giancarlo, Steve Greenlaw, Jim Groom (chair), Mary Kayler, Shelley Keith, Jeff McClurken, Ciara Peacock, Jerry Slezak, Zach Whalen
Jim Groom started our first meeting of the academic year with introductions of our newest member: Ciara Peacock is the student government representative. George Meadows will continue to represent COE and Megan Petter will be joining the group from Student Services. COB will appoint a new member.
Jim reviewed the role of PTAC as an advisory committee, established to advise President Hurley rather than formulate policy. As such, the group will bring ideas and suggestions that are opportunities for targeted investments to the President with regard to technology on campus (like the Domain of One’s Own). PTAC also brings forward issues in our representative areas. Jeff McClurken reminded the group and informed the new members that this advisory committee developed out of the University Strategic Plan and coordinates the various purposes of technology on campus.
The committee discussed developing a survey of students and faculty about digitally enabled learning. A digital literacy survey has been conducted in the past prior to Rosemary Arneson’ s hiring. Items to consider in a new survey include how students and faculty are using technology (especially with respect to on-line learning like hybrid, blended and more creative models) and how do these stakeholders want to use technology in the classroom. There was a conversation about whether two survey instruments were needed: one to address the use of technology on campus and another to examine student and faculty interest in on-line learning. Jeff has been tasked with looking at the latter. As the former has been part of prior PTAC meetings, the group agreed that this could be done first as a benchmark as the results would provide the strengths and weaknesses for future growth and establish a baseline and data for future discussions. Debra Schleef’s quantitative methods in sociology class is willing to conduct the survey. PTAC appointed a subcommittee consisting of Steve Greenlaw, Hall Cheshire, Rosemary Arneson, Mary Kayler, Ciara Peacock and Jeff McClurken to brainstorm and work on the survey. They will start with covering digitally inflective learning on campus, technology use on campus broadly defined including the need and desire for it, and the most important resources with respect to campus technology. Rosemary will organize the meeting with the subcommittee membership and Debra Schleef. Hall believes this survey will be of great value to IT in their decision-making; specifically, the survey can point to deficits in the technology environment here. Because of the broad reach of technology campus-wide, he thought that a survey of staff would also be beneficial, and a second survey was proposed. Jerry Slezak suggested a branched survey soliciting information from students, faculty and staff. The subcommittee will meet and bring a draft to the next meeting. Given that a class will be helping to conduct the survey, Jeff and others suggested a smaller “test” survey to examine the questions and assess validity be administered first.
The process for purchasing apps for individual faculty and department use was also discussed. IT can set up an iTunes account for an individual department; however, every device has to be on that account. Jerry said that other institutions do this by using a departmental gmail account but that no good model exists for how to purchase apps. He suggested talking with Erma Baker and Jack Burns (the Apple education representative for UMW). Jerry also noted that the need for computer replacements, including a long term plan for a refresh in the ITCC, be kept on the radar as this process, when delayed, is costly in terms of staff, time and funds.
Jim will be adding a mission statement and committee members to the PTAC website. Hall asked for PTAC for input on the IT strategic plan that will be worked on this year. Finally, our next meeting with be at 8 am on Wednesday, September 24th. Jim will look into teleconference for members who are interested in this option.