A couple weeks ago we attended the British Columbia Educational Technology User Group (ETUG) Spring Workshop at Vancouver Community College in downtown Vancouver.  This was my first opportunity to engage with the ETUG community and  I was thoroughly impressed!  ETUG brings together academics, educational technologists, instructional designers and information technologists to share ideas and best practices around teaching with technology.

Keynote audience

A room full of edtech’ies – Photo by By BCcampus_News

It was lovely to meet and engage with colleagues at other institutions facing similar challenges who speak the same ‘edtech’ language.  Despite using different technologies and tools we mostly speak the same language around the practices around integrating technology in higher education and have much to share with one another.

My favourite sessions included: Irwin DeVries speaking on developments at the OER University (OERu); Judy Chan, Brian Lamb & Zack Lee from the University of British Columbia (UBC) speaking on ‘Course Design beyond the horizon’; and Sue Doner & and her panel from the University of Victoria (UVic) speaking on ‘Evolving a practice for Sustainable professional staff development’.

I was particularly impresssed with how UBC is employing the use of MediaWiki to collaboratively create and share content in their teaching and learning centre.  From what I gathered, most of their online content is created collaboratively using wikis which are then embedded in a variety of sites and systems.  Thus the content can be maintained in one location and reused in any number; a good example of this is information such as library hours which can be maintained on the wiki and embedded into any number of university or departmental websites.

I also really enjoyed and continue to enjoy the Ed Tech Case Studies project conducted at UVic.  You can access the case studies, which have been filmed, on http://edtechcasestudies.uvic.ca.  In the videos academics reflect on how they approach and use technology in teaching and learning.  It’s a great little project and I would love to see more case studies, perhaps even one or two from VIU staff?

I also presented on my experience working with open education in South Africa.  You can view the presentation below.  I’ll likely deliver this talk at VIU in the coming months.

Overall a very worthwhile experience at ETUG and I look forward to engaging further with this community!