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Meeting Minutes Spring 2013

Meeting of Wednesday, May 15, 2013

ROLLING AGENDA

1. Announcements and approval of minutes—5 minutes

2. “Best practices” for teaching and learning in the 21st century (Tom Augst)—20 minutes

a. What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses?
b. How should this information be disseminated among faculty colleagues?
c. FAQs for faculty consultations

3. Consultation mechanisms—40 minutes

a. Venues for consultation in schools
b. Review of online courses that are already under development/discussion
c. RFP criteria
d. Crowdsourcing

4. Platforms (Tom Delaney)—20 minutes

5. BREAK—15 minutes

6. Partners (Rick Matasar)—30 minutes

7. MOOCs (Russ Neuman)—20 minutes

8. Interim report (Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco)—10 minutes

9. New topics?—20 minutes


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for May 15, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for May 15, 2013

Meeting of Wednesday, May 15, 2013

ROLLING AGENDA

1.Announcements and approval of minutes—5 minutes
2.“Best practices” for teaching and learning in the 21st century (Tom Augst)—20 minutes
    a. What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses?
    b. How should this information be disseminated among faculty colleagues?
    c. FAQs for faculty consultations
3. Consultation mechanisms—40 minutes
    a. Venues for consultation in schools
    b. Review of online courses that are already under development/discussion
    c. RFP criteria
d. Crowdsourcing
4. Platforms (Tom Delaney)—20 minutes
5. BREAK—15 minutes
6. Partners (Rick Matasar)—30 minutes
7. MOOCs (Russ Neuman)—20 minutes
8. Interim report (Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco)—10 minutes
9. New topics?—20 minutes

Present: Karen Adolph, Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Richard Cole, Carol Hutchins, Larry Jackson, Mitchell Joachim, Ted Magder, Rick Matasar, Russ Neuman, Joyce O’Connor, Ryan Poynter, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling, Victoria Stanhope, Marc Triola.

Joined via teleconference: Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Ben Maddox.

Absent: Joshua Blank, Dalton Conley, Aswath Damodaran, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Patricio Navia, Keith O’Brien, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Shankar Prasad.

SUMMARY

Announcements
 • An email was shared with the committee regarding the need for university-wide solutions to the challenges posed by NYU’s global presence.
Best practices subcommittee
 • The committee reviewed the recommendations of the best practices subcommittee, suggested minor revisions, and sent the document back to the subcommittee for further development.
FAQs
 • The best practices subcommittee distributed the list of FAQs that it has created. It will develop responses over the summer.
Consultation mechanisms
 • Student Consultation: The committee was asked to consider mechanisms for student input regarding technology-enhanced education.
 • Faculty Consultation: The subcommittee on faculty consultation was asked to have its final recommendations ready by the fall, so that in-person consultations can begin at the start of the semester, with committee members visiting the venues that the Deans recommended in their school.
 • Crowdsourcing: The committee agreed to hear a presentation on the use of crowdsourcing to solicit input regarding technology-enhanced education.
 • RFP: After making several recommendations, the committee agreed to spend more time developing a request for proposals to engage faculty who are interested in developing online courses.
Platform
 • The committee heard about the ongoing assessment of platforms for online courses that is being conducted by the Office of Global Technology Services.
Partners
 • The committee agreed to make no recommendation at this time on whether or not the University should forge partnerships with online education providers. It was agreed, though, that individual schools should remain free to develop their own partnerships.
MOOCs
 • There was a discussion of mini-MOOCs: short, non-credit lectures or minicourses. Some of these mini-courses could be designed to help students assess their readiness for study in a discipline and to introduce them to the curricular offerings in that area.
Summer activity
 • The subcommittees on consultation and best practices will work informally this summer and report back to the committee in the fall.

MINUTES

1. Announcements
Matthew Santirocco read an email from committee member Patricio Navia, who could not be present at the meeting. In the email, Patricio notes that the University’s global presence has already created a situation in which students may not be in the same physical space for classes. Citing his own experience teaching a third-year seminar in Global Liberal Studies, where the students are scattered among several different Global Sites, Patricio’s point was that individual faculty and schools will have to continue finding their own piecemeal solutions to the challenges this situation creates until this committee can recommend university-wide solutions.

2. Best practices subcommittee
Tom Augst presented the document the subcommittee prepared on best practices for tech-enhanced learning. Describing the recommendations it contained as a set of principles to guide the development of online learning, Tom suggested that once the document is revised, it could be posted on NYU’s website, and could include actual examples of innovative and effective online courses. Tom also pointed out that the document addresses best practices at the course, school, and university levels.

The committee made several suggestions, most of them concerning the document’s wording, before sending it back to the subcommittee. Rick Matasar suggested that this best practices guide should include a preamble stating the principles that have guided the committee’s discussions—e.g., that the University will only develop online courses that do not compromise NYU’s academic quality; that these courses should use technology to improve learning outcomes; and that the University’s and schools’ governance procedures must be respected at every step in the creation and implementation of these courses.

3. FAQs
Russ Neuman distributed the list of FAQs that the best practices subcommittee came up with. The subcommittee now plans to develop responses to them over the summer. Mark Alter noted that some of the questions go beyond the purview of this committee. Matthew agreed and replied that Legal Counsel and other University offices would review the FAQs and provide input.

4. Consultation mechanisms
The committee discussed four topics related to consultation:

(a) STUDENT CONSULTATION: Rick informed the committee that he and Matthew met with student senators, and that the students asked to be involved in our discussions. Rick asked the committee to consider mechanisms for student input, from membership on the full committee to participation in subcommittees. Tom noted that the best practices subcommittee already includes a student.

(b) FACULTY CONSULTATION: Matthew noted that Gigi Dopico-Black’s subcommittee on consultation is refining its report on the best strategies for creating widespread, inclusive mechanisms for faculty consultation. He asked that the subcommittee have its final recommendations ready by the fall, so that faculty consultation can begin at the very outset of the semester. To that end, he reported on the venues that the Deans recommended in their schools for in-person consultation.

(c) CROWDSOURCING: Rick asked the committee to consider inviting Beth Noveck (a professor at Wagner and former Deputy Chief Technology Officer at the White House, where she also led the Open Government Initiative) to make a presentation on crowdsourcing to the committee. He explained that crowdsourcing is a strategy to solicit input from people electronically, especially those who might not otherwise have an opportunity to participate in these discussions. He noted that decisions would continue to be made using the University’s mechanisms for shared governance; crowdsourcing would only be a method for informing those decisions. There was enthusiasm around the table for using crowdsourcing as another consultation mechanism.

(d) RFP: The committee revisited the idea of using an RFP to engage those faculty who are interested in developing online courses, but have not yet approached the committee. Matthew suggested that an RFP might be most effective if distributed to school deans. This would allow schools to manage curricular priorities and prevent the number of faculty proposals from being overwhelming. It would also ensure that the committee is not creating expectations that it cannot meet, given that the number of courses the University will actually be able to create each year will be small. He then suggested that the committee develop criteria for these courses. Mark expressed concern that the RFP might not reach faculty if it is sent only to the deans. Gigi echoed Mark’s concern, adding that distributing the RFP to the deans alone might make the process appear top-down. She suggested that the RFP could go to departments, which could present proposals to the deans, who could then decide which to advance on behalf of their schools. This could create healthy competition and make people feel enfranchised in a localized decision-making process. Richard Cole added that it would be useful to announce in advance the number of proposals (very few) that will actually be accepted so as to manage faculty expectations. He also suggested this committee should not be involved in judging the proposals, which would conflate its advisory role with decision-making. Mitch Joachim described a multi-tiered process that would be public and layered, though he also cautioned against making this process unnecessarily complex.

5. Platform
Peter Schilling explained how a learning platform for online courses would be implemented at the University. He noted that any platform would have to integrate with other University systems (e.g., the University’s Student Information System). The University will develop “middleware” to link the learning platform with specific tools that may evolve rapidly (e.g., wikis, blogs, and ePortfolios), allowing these tools to be mixed and matched as needed. The University is considering open source learning platforms, including Sakai and EdX.

6. Partners
Rick gave an overview of the strategic issues involved in relationships between universities and online education providers such as Coursera and 2U. He suggested that the committee not make any recommendation about whether NYU should enter into such partnerships until we complete our strategic analysis, run some pilot projects, and get a better sense of the advantages and disadvantages of partnering in technology-enhanced education. He added that this is especially important since there is more work to be done consulting faculty and determining our overall strategic goals for the University. Rick did point out, however, that, in keeping with NYU governance, schools should be free to explore and pursue partnerships independently of overall university strategies, when doing so would serve a school's strategic goals.

7. MOOCs
Russ described his idea of developing mini-MOOCs: short, non-credit, interactive classes that would convey information to students and connect them with what is available at the University. Students would be able to assess their readiness to take full- length, for-credit courses, and the University would be in a position to promote these courses to students.

8. Summer Activity
It was agreed that the two subcommittees would work informally over the summer on consultation mechanisms (including an RFP) and best practices, and report back in the fall.

The meeting adjourned at 1:00 p.m.


Meeting of Wednesday, May 1, 2013

ROLLING AGENDA

1. Announcements

a. Update on the inventory of online and hybrid courses and programs at NYU (Ben Maddox and Peter Schilling)
b. Report on the Coursera partners meeting, 4/4 (Rick Matasar)
c. Report on the Education Innovation Summit, 4/15-17 (Rick Matasar)
d. Report on the TEDMed Conference, 4/16-19 (Marc Triola)

2. Review and approval of minutes

3. Interim report

4. Agenda for longer meeting on 5/15

5. Engaging with the NYU community

a. Further discussion of consultation subcommittee report, especially of the survey of faculty
b. Follow-up with Deans, FSC, SSC, and Student Affairs
c. Engaging students: 4/11 meeting of the University Committee on Student Life (Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco)
d. Crowdsourcing possibilities

6. Report from subcommittee on “best practices” for teaching and learning in the 21st century (Tom Augst, Mark Alter, Russ Neuman, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Shankar Prasad, and Peter Schilling)

a. What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses?
b. How should this information be disseminated among faculty colleagues?
c. FAQs for faculty consultations

7. RFP—continued

8. Platforms and partnering possibilities

9. MOOCs

a. Russ Neuman’s memo on mini-MOOCs

10. Systematic evaluation of technology-enhanced education

a. Russ’s memo on assessment


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for May 1, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for May 1, 2013

Meeting of Wednesday, May 1, 2013

ROLLING AGENDA

1. Announcements

a. Update on the inventory of online and hybrid courses and programs at NYU (Ben Maddox and Peter Schilling)
b. Report on the Coursera partners meeting, 4/4 (Rick Matasar)
c. Report on the Education Innovation Summit, 4/15-17 (Rick Matasar)
d. Report on the TEDMed Conference, 4/16-19 (Marc Triola)

2. Review and approval of minutes

3. Interim report

4. Agenda for longer meeting on 5/15

5. Engaging with the NYU community

a. Further discussion of consultation subcommittee report, especially of the survey of faculty
b. Follow-up with Deans, FSC, SSC, and Student Affairs
c. Engaging students: 4/11 meeting of the University Committee on Student Life (Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco)
d. Crowdsourcing possibilities

6. Report from subcommittee on “best practices” for teaching and learning in the 21st century (Tom Augst, Mark Alter, Russ Neuman, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Shankar Prasad, and Peter Schilling)

a. What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses?
b. How should this information be disseminated among faculty colleagues?
c. FAQs for faculty consultations

7. RFP—continued

8. Platforms and partnering possibilities

9. MOOCs

a. Russ Neuman’s memo on mini-MOOCs

10. Systematic evaluation of technology-enhanced education

a. Russ’s memo on assessment

Present: Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Carol Hutchins, Larry Jackson, Mitchell Joachim, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Rick Matasar, Russ Neuman, Dan O’Sullivan, Ryan Poynter, Shankar Prasad, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling.

Joined via teleconference: Keith O’Brien.

Absent: Karen Adolph, Dalton Conley, Aswath Damodaran, Ben Maddox, Ted Magder, Patricio Navia, Joyce O’Connor, Jan Plass, Victoria Stanhope, Marc Triola.
MINUTES

1. Announcements
Matthew Santirocco asked that committee members send to him and to Rick Matasar any topics they would like to discuss at the extended meeting on 5/15.

2. Engaging with the NYU community
Matthew reported that he and Rick had sent an email to the Deans asking which were the most appropriate venues in their schools for consultations with faculty about technology enhanced education. In response, several of the Deans relayed questions from their faculty concerning when and how support for the development of tech-enhanced and online courses will be provided, and concerning the platform that NYU will use for them (e.g., edX, Coursera, etc.).

Matthew noted that Tom Delaney and Global Technology Services (GTS) were already assessing various platforms that NYU might use, with an eye to making a recommendation shortly; he also noted that the Library and GTS were exploring ways of enhancing the services that they provide to faculty (which are, of course, distinct from those which some schools provide and others may wish to provide in the future).

Rick Matasar then discussed Duke University’s withdrawal from Semester Online (an education consortium that will offer online undergraduate courses for credit) after faculty there voted against the partnership. Rick explained that opposition to the consortium reflected faculty objections to Duke’s top-down implementation of the partnership, rather than a rejection of online learning, which the faculty, in a separate statement, actually encouraged the University to pursue. Rick contrasted Duke’s approach with NYU’s process, which has included both faculty input (through our committee and the consultations we will undertake) and discussions in other venues. Matthew described the Duke faculty’s decision as heartening insofar as it validates the more consultative approach that NYU is taking.

Gigi Dopico-Black then asked about the role of incentives in the creation of online courses, a topic that had come up in a meeting of Humanities chairs in FAS. She noted that it is important to make this an open process and also to avoid creating the sense that there are disparities in faculty compensation. Addressing the financial issue, Rick described the rationale for offering compensation. A great deal of work goes into developing online courses. If the work is done in a faculty member’s teaching load (i.e., in place of a course s/he would otherwise have taught), the school or department would need to receive funds; if the faculty member works out of load, however, then s/he should receive added compensation. Addressing the other question about process, Matthew noted that this committee should develop an RFP to ensure that all faculty have an opportunity to express their interest and to have proposals reviewed according to established criteria. Josh Blank noted the importance of transparency with regard to any compensation plan the University may develop, and any external partnership the University might launch (e.g., with edX or Coursera). Mark Alter pointed out the importance of making decisions about the development of online courses at the school level, using an open, democratic process that is mindful of pedagogical and curricular needs, and inclusive of all faculty (including contract and adjunct faculty).

3. Report of the subcommittee on “best practices” for teaching and learning the 21st century
Tom Augst distributed a draft of the subcommittee’s report, describing it as a comprehensive attempt to identify best practices at three levels—courses, schools, and the University. The report includes nearly 40 recommendations for pedagogy, compensation policies, professional development, and the use of prototypes. Tom asked that the committee share any suggestions with him and Peter Schilling. [Subsequently, on May 3, Matthew sent a digital copy of Tom’s memo to the committee members, some of whom were unable to attend this meeting.]

The meeting adjourned at 2:00 p.m.


Meeting of Tuesday, April 16, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements

a. Revised working discussion document
b. Inventory
c. Scheduling a longer meeting
d. Interim Report

2. Review and approval of minutes

3. Engaging with the NYU community (Gigi Dopico-Black, for the subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement)

a. Engaging students: 4/11 meeting of the University Committee on Student Life
b. Report from subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement (Gigi Dopico-Black, Mike Beckerman, Richard Cole, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ted Magder, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, and Shankar Prasad)
c. Follow-up with Deans, FSC, SSC, and Student Affairs

4. RFP

5. Report on Coursera conference (Rick Matasar)

6. Subcommittee on “best practices” for teaching and learning in the 21st century (Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Russ Neuman, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Shankar Prasad, and Peter Schilling)

a. What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses?
b. How should this information be disseminated among faculty colleagues?
c. FAQs for faculty consultations

7. Platforms and partnering possibilities

8. MOOCs

a. Russ Neuman’s memo on mini-MOOCs

9. Systematic evaluation of technology-enhanced education

a. Russ’s memo on assessment


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for April 16, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for April 16, 2013

Meeting of Tuesday, April 16, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
    a. Revised working discussion document
    b. Inventory
    c. Scheduling a longer meeting
    d. Interim Report
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Engaging with the NYU community (Gigi Dopico-Black, for the subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement)
    a. Engaging students: 4/11 meeting of the University Committee on Student Life
    b. Report from subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement (Gigi Dopico-Black, Mike Beckerman, Richard Cole, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ted Magder, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, and Shankar Prasad)
    c. Follow-up with Deans, FSC, SSC, and Student Affairs
4. RFP
5. Report on Coursera conference (Rick Matasar)
6. Subcommittee on “best practices” for teaching and learning in the 21st century (Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Russ Neuman, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Shankar Prasad, and Peter Schilling)
    a. What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses?
    b. How should this information be disseminated among faculty colleagues?
    c. FAQs for faculty consultations
7. Platforms and partnering possibilities
8. MOOCs
    a. Russ Neuman’s memo on mini-MOOCs
9. Systematic evaluation of technology-enhanced education
    a. Russ’s memo on assessment

Present: Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Dalton Conley, Aswath Damodaran, Gigi Dopico-Black, Carol Hutchins, Larry Jackson, Mitchell Joachim, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ben Maddox, Patricio Navia, Russ Neuman, Joyce O’Connor, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Ryan Poynter, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling, Victoria Stanhope.

Joined via teleconference: Rick Matasar.

Absent: Karen Adolph, Tom Delaney, Ted Magder, Keith O’Brien, Shankar Prasad, Marc Triola.

SUMMARY

1. Announcements
• Revised working discussion document. The latest draft of the document has been posted on the committee’s private website.
• Inventory. Global Technology Services (GTS) has developed a three-phase strategy to enhance the inventory of online and technology-enhanced courses and programs that appears on the committee’s public website.
• Scheduling a longer meeting. A Doodle poll has been sent to committee members to determine their availability for a longer committee meeting this semester.

2. Subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement
• The subcommittee presented its conclusions regarding the best strategies for soliciting input from faculty on key issues and sharing information with them about technology-based projects.
• The committee agreed that outreach should include conversations at the departmental level, and also considered the types of information that it might want to obtain by survey.
• There was a discussion about the importance of giving faculty an opportunity to think creatively about the role of technology in teaching and learning, and how best to encourage such thinking.
• The committee considered several components in a broad strategy for outreach and education around technology.

MINUTES

1. Announcements
(a) Revised working discussion document. Matthew Santirocco informed the committee that the original working discussion document was posted only on the committee’s internal website and that it would be replaced there by the latest version of the document. Since many of the topics listed in the memo will be discussed in committee meetings, they will appear in the agendas and minutes that are posted on the committee’s public website. Matthew noted that this document could be used as a basis for creating an interim report at the end of the semester.
(b) Inventory. Matthew announced that Lillian Moran, Ben Maddox, and Peter Schilling have developed a strategy for enriching the inventory of online courses that appears on the committee’s public website. Ben Maddox explained that the strategy has three phrases, based on course types and materials. Phase one, which is already underway, consists of researching existing online programs at NYU (e.g., Poly’s online engineering programs) and pulling from the Student Information System (SIS) a list of courses that are tagged as “online” and “hybrid.” As a result of these efforts, the inventory now includes nearly 300 courses. Peter added that phases two and three would< consist of building an inventory of courses that include some online components (but not enough to be considered hybrid). He noted, for example, that there are hundreds of courses throughout the University that use online videos for the presentation of course content.
(c) Scheduling a longer meeting. Matthew reminded the committee that there was agreement to hold a longer meeting this semester. Given the importance of the meeting, he asked that members be flexible with regard to scheduling.

Subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement
Gigi Dopico-Black reported on the March 27 meeting of the subcommittee (which includes Mike Beckerman, Richard Cole, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Dan O’Sullivan, and Shankar Prasad). She shared the following conclusions from their meeting: (a) the process of faculty consultation should utilize venues that are both structured (e.g., departments, standing committees, the Faculty Senators Council) and unstructured (e.g., town hall meetings and online surveys or polls), though existing structures will have the most traction; and (b) the process of faculty consultation and engagement might necessitate some demonstration to faculty about the kinds of projects that are possible.


Meeting of Thursday, April 4, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements

a. Inventory
b. Longer meeting
c. Interim Report

2. Review and approval of minutes

3. Focus of the committee

4. Agenda of the committee

a. How to support faculty who want to use technology to enhance education?
b. With regard to online courses, which strategic directions should we explore?
c. What are the components of a high-quality online course?
d. FAQ
e. MOOCs
f. Platforms and partnering possibilities
g. Review proposals of online courses requested so far and our process for handling them
h. Systematic evaluation of technology-enhanced education

5. Engaging with the NYU community

a. Engaging students: 4/11 meeting of the University Committee on Student Life
b. Report from subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement (Gigi Dopico-Black, Mike Beckerman, Richard Cole, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ted Magder, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, and Shankar Prasad)
c. Follow-up with Deans, FSC, SSC, and Student Affairs
d. RFP for different pilots—e.g., digitization of subject matter, basic courses for an A.A. degree


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for April 4, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for April 4, 2013

Meeting of Thursday, April 4, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
    a. Inventory
    b. Longer meeting
    c. Interim Report
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Focus of the committee
4. Agenda of the committee
    a. How to support faculty who want to use technology to enhance education?
    b. With regard to online courses, which strategic directions should we explore?
    c. What are the components of a high-quality online course?
    d. FAQ
    e. MOOCs
    f. Platforms and partnering possibilities
    g. Review proposals of online courses requested so far and our process for handling them
    h. Systematic evaluation of technology-enhanced education
5. Engaging with the NYU community
a. Engaging students: 4/11 meeting of the University Committee on Student Life
b. Report from subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement (Gigi Dopico-Black, Mike Beckerman, Richard Cole, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ted Magder, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, and Shankar Prasad)
c. Follow-up with Deans, FSC, SSC, and Student Affairs
d. RFP for different pilots—e.g., digitization of subject matter, basic courses for an
A.A. degree

Present: Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Aswath Damodaran, Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Carol Hutchins, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ben Maddox, Ted Magder, Russ Neuman, Joyce O’Connor, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Ryan Poynter, Shankar Prasad, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling, Marc Triola.

Absent: Karen Adolph, Dalton Conley, Mitchell Joachim, Rick Matasar, Patricio Navia, Keith O’Brien, Victoria Stanhope.

SUMMARY

1. Announcements

(a) Inventory. Matthew Santirocco reminded the committee that the inventory of online programs and technology-enhanced courses on its public website needs to be enriched. He asked the group members to send Rick and him any examples that should be added to the inventory, or, alternatively, to put them in touch with another faculty member or administrator (e.g., an Associate or Vice Dean) who might have a better sense of what is happening in this area in their school.

(b) Interim report. Matthew reminded the committee that an interim report was due by the end of the spring semester. He suggested that Rick’s working discussion document (on which, see item 4b below) might serve as a basis for this interim report, but that the document would first need to be refined and revised to reflect the committee’s thinking.

2. Review and approval of minutes

Matthew noted that the summary and minutes of the March 7 meeting had been revised to incorporate one or two edits that committee members had suggested. He asked the group to get back to him and/or Ryan Poynter by the end of the week if they had any further edits.

3. Focus of the committee

Since Rick Matasar was unable to attend this meeting due to a conflicting commitment (the Coursera partners meeting at Penn), Matthew read to the group a few thoughts that Rick had sent him via email. In his letter, Rick noted that the future of technology-enhanced education was such a large subject that the committee would likely only be able to complete a small, but nevertheless important portion of its work by the end of the semester. He suggested that next steps toward this interim outcome should be (a) for the committee to have a longer meeting so that it can have more in-depth discussions of some of the issues that have surfaced; (b) for the group to agree to lay out the strategic concerns surrounding each of the many paths that the University might choose to take; (c) for the group to recommend to the President and Provost that the University not foreclose any of these options before we can get an operational understanding of them by running multiple pilot projects; (d) for faculty consultations to begin this semester and then be ramped up in fall 2013; (e) for the group to hear presentations from several different NYU schools on their current online initiatives; and (f) for the group to recommend that NYU host a conference on technology-enhanced education in spring 2014.
The committee members voted in favor of holding a longer meeting. Matthew suggested that this could happen in May, after the last day of classes.

Carol Hutchins observed that pilot projects (such as the University’s Open Ed initiative) are good but that we need to learn from them. This cannot happen unless reports are generated and made available to the wider NYU community. Matthew agreed that data from past pilots is important, but that we will also want to think prospectively—viz., to learn what best practices are in other areas in which we might want to run future pilots (on which, see item 4c below).

Next, since Jan Plass needed to leave early, Matthew read aloud a few thoughts that he had sent to him earlier via email. Jan stressed in this email (a) that the committee should not attempt to be prescriptive as to how faculty might use technology in their teaching; (b) that a strong focus of the committee’s discussions should be on hybrid or blended methods of integrating technology with in-person instruction; (c) that funding should be made available for broad faculty experimentation; and (d) that improving the University’s “core product” (i.e., teaching) should take priority over generating revenue.

4. Agenda of the committee for the rest of the semester

Given the considerations noted above regarding the focus of our committee, at least in the short-term, the committee then discussed in more detail specifics of its agenda.

(a) How to support faculty who want to use technology to enhance education?
Since supporting faculty who wish to use technology to enhance teaching and learning is the overarching frame of the committee’s work, Matthew suggested that there is a continuum of use that needs to be supported. On one end of the continuum is a low-level use of technology (e.g., wikis) in an in-person course; in the middle is a truly hybrid course, which blends online and in-person components; and at the other end is a fully online course. Schools will ultimately decide which options they want to pursue. But we need to understand the full range of technological enhancements that are possible and how we can support faculty working on every point on the continuum. It has become clear that the level of support could be improved, not just by providing additional funds but also by restructuring how support is provided. To that end, Ben Maddox has been in discussions with Global Technology Services (GTS), Informational Technology Services (ITS), and the Library about how they can collaborate to enhance support for faculty.

Mark Alter noted that five different types of online educational materials have come up in the committee’s discussions: (a) wholly online programs; (b) individual online courses; (c) online components used to complement in-person instruction; (d) online assessment tools (e.g., ePortfolios); and (e) online tutorials for students (e.g., athletes) who occasionally need to miss class or who are away from campus for long periods of time. [Subsequent to the meeting, he added a sixth type: extant databases or shared research across schools and GNU sites.] Matthew replied that these types fall along the continuum of use that he described and that needs to be supported. Aswath Damodaran observed that he had been trying to teach a MOOC for five years, and that the biggest obstacle that he had faced was NYU. He stressed that the University should not discourage schools or faculty from mounting online courses.

(b) With regard to online courses, which strategic directions should we explore? The committee reviewed a new draft of Rick’s working discussion document. Matthew explained that Rick had revised his previous draft to reflect more accurately where the committee is in its conversations. The strategic directions outlined in the document as “telegraphic” bullets were all reframed as questions, to clarify that they represent options that might be explored and not predetermined outcomes. A prefatory statement to that effect was also added to the top of the document. Committee members made a number of suggestions for further changes to the document, and they agreed that, pending these additional edits, the new draft should replace the now outdated December 2012 draft on the committee’s internal website. [Subsequent to the meeting, Matthew sent the committee members a further revision of the document. A few committee members suggested further changes; these were incorporated into the document, which was then posted to the internal website.]

Mike Beckerman asked to what extent the options listed on the document as strategic directions were truly “optional”—viz., whether the University might find itself forced (for various reasons) to pursue certain paths. He observed that it might be productive to address this directly. Aswath answered by noting that there are three separate issues relating to technology-enhanced education that the University community must confront. First, there is a general lack of information about what instructional technology is available and the kinds of opportunities that it creates. Second, faculty are anxious about how the introduction of this technology into their profession might change their lives. (This “fear factor,” he noted, is the biggest issue at stake.) Finally, there is the issue of the economics of online education, that is, the fear that for-profit institutions will take over this space and will shape it definitively. He noted that there is a need for more clarity and discussion about all of these issues; if we focus only on the first issue (viz., providing more information about the technology), then the fear factor around the other two issues will increase.

(c) What are the components of high-quality online and hybrid courses? Peter Schilling reported that he, Jan, Tom Augst, and Dan O’Sullivan had been independently discussing the need to provide information for faculty about best practices for technology-enhanced teaching and learning in the 21st century. Matthew suggested that this group, augmented by additional committee members, would make for a good subcommittee. There was unanimous agreement among the group that such a “best practices” subcommittee should be created. In addition to Peter, Jan, Tom, and Dan, the following members volunteered to serve on this subcommittee: Mark, Russ Neuman, and Shankar Prasad. It was agreed that the group would explore this topic, make recommendations for disseminating this information, and develop an FAQ to prepare committee members for consultations with colleagues.

The meeting adjourned at 12:30 p.m.


Meeting of Thursday, March 7, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Report on the Harvard-MIT conference on “Online Learning and the Future of the Residential Campus”
    (Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco)
4. Further discussion of strategic directions
5. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
6. Current state of platform compatibility among the NYU schools (Tom Delaney)
7. Discussion of partnering possibilities


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for March 7, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for March 7, 2013

Meeting of Thursday, March 7, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Report on the Harvard-MIT conference on “Online Learning and the Future of the Residential Campus” (Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco)
4. Further discussion of strategic directions
5. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
6. Current state of platform compatibility among the NYU schools (Tom Delaney)
7. Discussion of partnering possibilities

Present: Tom Augst, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Mitchell Joachim, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ben Maddox, Rick Matasar, Russ Neuman, Joyce O’Connor, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling, Victoria Stanhope.

Absent: Karen Adolph, Mark Alter, Michael Beckerman, Dalton Conley, Aswath Damodaran, Carol Hutchins, Ted Magder, Patricio Navia, Keith O’Brien, Ryan Poynter, Shankar Prasad, Marc Triola.
SUMMARY

1. Review of summary/minutes
The summary and minutes of the February 26 meeting were distributed at the meeting. [Subsequent to the meeting, on March 11, the summary and minutes of the February 12 meeting were sent to the group via email.]

2. Report on the Harvard-MIT conference on “Online Learning and the Future of the Residential Campus”
Matthew Santirocco and Rick Matasar reported on the recent Harvard-MIT conference on digital education, which they attended by invitation as NYU’s representatives. It was suggested that NYU might host a similar event to engage its own community and share “best practices.”

3. Current state of platform compatibility among the NYU schools
Tom Delaney presented on the development of a common technical and service platform for all NYU units. There was a discussion about engaging faculty in the development of online or technology-enhanced courses.

4. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
The subcommittee on faculty consultation and engagement reported that it would meet soon to discuss appropriate venues for in-person discussions. It was observed that committee members need to be adequately prepared for these discussions and able to respond, at least minimally, to questions that colleagues might have.

MINUTES

1. Review of summary/minutes
Matthew Santirocco distributed the summary and minutes of the February 26 meeting. He asked that committee members get back to him with any suggested changes. The summary and minutes of the February 12 meeting were not yet ready to share with the committee. [Subsequent to the meeting, on March 11, Matthew sent this document to the group via email.]

2. Report on the Harvard-MIT conference on “Online Learning and the Future of the Residential Campus”
Matthew and Rick Matasar reported on the recent Harvard-MIT conference on digital education, which they attended by invitation as NYU’s representatives. Matthew observed that there were two conclusions to be drawn from the conference: (a) NYU is not behind in its use of technology—indeed, many people at the conference were eager to know what NYU is doing in this area; and (b) the best way to explore the uses of technology in higher education is to engage faculty at every level of decision-making and experimentation. Rick added that assessment was a particular focus of discussion at the conference. Noting that half of the attendees were Harvard and MIT faculty, Matthew suggested that NYU might host a similar event to engage its own community and share “best practices.”
Russ Neuman reported that he had met recently with the leadership of Penn State’s World Campus, which has offered online degree and certificate programs (now over 80 different programs) since 1998. He suggested that the PSU World Campus report be posted to the committee’s public website. [The report was subsequently posted to the website, in the section “Selected Recent Literature on Technology and Education.”]

3. Current state of platform compatibility among the NYU schools
Tom Delaney presented on the development of a common technical and service platform for all NYU units. The goals of this initiative, he explained, are (a) to develop a technical and architectural framework to support technology-enhanced education at NYU; (b) to build upon and complement the accessibility and scale provided by NYU Classes, SIS, and Global Identity Management; and (c) to bring new and innovative tools into the “toolkit.” Rick noted that the various services described in the presentation would continue to take shape as the University’s strategic outlook evolves. He suggested that, at some point in the future, the committee might want to take a closer look at Global Technology Services (GTS), perhaps delegating a few members to experiment with some of the services under development.

Tom Augst asked how faculty might be engaged not only in the design of content for online or technology-enhanced courses but also in how such courses are taught. Peter Schilling replied that he is acting as a tech consultant to a faculty working group that has been tasked with designing a new epidemiology course, which will be required for the Global Public Health major and which may be taught in a hybrid format. Rick observed that the newly hired instructional technologists in GTS specialize in different areas (e.g., sciences, languages) and that they are assigned to projects according to their particular expertise.

4. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
Matthew noted that a plan for consulting with faculty needs to be developed fairly soon. He suggested that groups like the Faculty Senators Council, the Student Senators Council, and the Deans could be asked to advise on the best way to reach their constituencies. Gigi Dopico-Black reported that a few members of the subcommittee on faculty consultations/engagement were planning to meet the following week to develop some strategies. But since these strategies would need to take into account differences in processes and sensibilities across the various schools, she suggested that the subcommittee be enlarged to include additional members from outside FAS. Jan Plass (Steinhardt), Dan O’Sullivan (TSOA), and Richard Cole (Courant) agreed to join the other members of the group (Gigi, Mike Beckerman, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, and Shankar Prasad).
Richard Cole expressed concern that the committee had not made enough progress in its discussions. Given this, he did not think that it would be productive at this time to engage his colleagues in discussions about technology-enhanced education. The time for such discussions would be when the committee had formulated some questions.

The meeting adjourned at 3:00 p.m.


Meeting of February 26, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Update on the committee’s website: http://www.nyu.edu/technology-enhanced-education
4. Further discussion of strategic directions
5. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
6. Discussion of partnering possibilities


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for February 26, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for February 26, 2013

Meeting of Tuesday, February 26, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Update on the committee’s website: http://www.nyu.edu/technology-enhanced-education
4. Further discussion of strategic directions
5.  Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
6. Discussion of partnering possibilities

Present: Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Dalton Conley, Aswath Damodaran, Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Carol Hutchins, Mitchell Joachim, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Rick Matasar, Patricio Navia, Russ Neuman, Keith O’Brien, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Shankar Prasad, Peter Schilling, Victoria Stanhope, Marc Triola.

Absent: Karen Adolph, Ben Maddox, Ted Magder, Joyce O’Connor, Ryan Poynter, Matthew Santirocco.

SUMMARY

1. Announcements
Co-chair Matthew Santirocco was unable to attend because he was traveling on University business.

2. Update on the committee’s website
The committee’s public website was launched on February 22, at which time an email notification (with text approved by the committee) was sent to all NYU faculty. Committee members were reminded to continue sending articles for the online bibliography, as well as examples of technology-enhanced courses and online programs for the inventory on the website.

3. Further discussion of strategic directions
Using technology to promote flexibility for students in the GNU and in their residential campuses. It was observed that while facilitating students’ study away in the GNU is a priority, this could also create anxiety within certain schools about the role of in-person instruction. The proposal was made to have a subgroup explore how technology might help resolve the various issues involved in GNU integration, in particular curricular integration. [This group has not yet been established.]

There was also a discussion about incompatible platforms (e.g., learning management systems) used by the various NYU schools on the Square. It was agreed that a status report about platform compatibility would be given at the next meeting (on March 7).

Using technology to create greater access to NYU. Some committee members expressed concern that increasing access to NYU via online programs runs the risk of undermining the University’s value-added brand, fostering resentment among students on the Square, creating a “subclass” of students, and giving students the impression that faculty and courses are interchangeable. It was also noted that site-specific learning is fundamental to the concept of the GNU. The proposal was made to explore these issues in subcommittees. [These groups have not yet been established.]

4. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students.
A subcommittee was formed to explore ideas for consultations. The group will report back in mid-March.

MINUTES

1. Announcements
Matthew Santirocco was unable to attend this meeting due to a Global site directors’ meeting in Abu Dhabi. Rick Matasar reported that he had been contacted by the Office of Public Affairs about a student reporter from the Washington Square News who had expressed interest in the University’s policies regarding online courses.

2. Update on the committee’s website
Rick reminded the members that the committee’s public website was live and that the email notification (with text approved by the committee) had gone out to the NYU faculty on February 22. As discussed at the February 12 meeting, the website includes an inventory of current technology-enhanced courses and online programs at NYU, as well as a selection of relevant articles. Rick asked the group to continue submitting items for the inventory and to forward to him and Matthew any articles that might be added to the online bibliography.

3. Further discussion of strategic directions
The committee continued its discussion of Rick’s “Working Document on Strategy and Internal NYU Issues.” There was consensus among the members that, as a matter of principle, the committee should encourage within schools technology-related activities that enhance teaching and learning. The conversation that ensued focused on the following two items from Rick’s memo:

Using technology to promote flexibility for students in the GNU and in their residential campuses. There was agreement among the committee members that one goal of technological enhancements at NYU should be to promote flexibility for students as they study away at Global sites and other portal campuses. Richard Cole suggested that we should welcome any innovation that makes it easier for students to take the classes they need while studying abroad. Gigi Dopico-Black noted that enabling students to take required courses online while abroad would (and, in some cases, should) create anxiety within certain schools about the role of in-person instruction. She asked whether this committee might weigh in on whether and how this option should be extended to students. In those cases where departments and schools feel that it is appropriate to allow students to take courses online while abroad, she suggested that guidelines for how those courses would operate should be set by departments and by the relevant curriculum committees (e.g., an on-site instructor could meet on a regular basis with the students enrolled in the class being taken at the study-away site and could work closely with the faculty member teaching the course in New York; online office hours could be held by the New York faculty member to complement the office hours offered by the on-site instructor; the New York faculty member could visit the site to meet with and advise students; students could be limited in the number of courses that they take online). Jan Plass replied that the committee should not attempt to establish policies that override faculty prerogative; rather, it should ensure that the appropriate technologies are available and then propose guidelines and procedures for using them. Gigi agreed and stressed that any online courses for students abroad should go through the same faculty approval processes as any other course (in FAS, for example, courses must be reviewed by departmental curriculum committees, then by the Undergraduate or Graduate Curriculum Committee, and, finally, at the full faculty meetings). Rick suggested that a subgroup be convened to explore the various issues that NYU as a multi-site institution faces (e.g., the flow of students across the Global Network) and how the use of technology might help to resolve these issues. No decision was made on that suggestion.

The discussion then turned to the obstacles that students, faculty, and staff currently face even in New York, due to the occasionally incompatible platforms that the various schools use. Keith O’Brien stressed the need to integrate all underlying systems between schools and campuses in New York before taking on any larger, GNU-wide initiatives. Peter Schilling noted that one of the first actions of the University-wide Teaching Technology Committee was to recommend that the University move to a single learning management system (LMS); previously, the various schools used six different systems. He explained to the group that the rollout of NYU Classes (a Sakai-based platform) would bring the schools into closer alignment. Rick observed, however, that despite this initiative, NYU-Poly is still using Blackboard, while SCPS continues to use Epsilon, and Barbara Krainovich-Miller observed that Medicine and Dentistry are also using different platforms. He suggested that the committee develop a list of operating principles that might help the NYU community use technology more effectively. To that end, he asked Tom Delaney to report back at the next meeting on where things currently stand with respect to platform compatibility among the various NYU schools. Finally, he asked the committee members to reflect upon the technological obstacles that they currently experience and that complicate their daily work.

Using technology to create greater access to NYU. There was a robust discussion about the ramifications of using technology to increase access to an NYU education among underserved populations. Dalton Conley expressed concern that offering such online programs might undermine NYU’s value-added brand and dilute its prestige, in addition to fostering resentment among students on the Square towards those who pay less to take courses towards their degree online. Gigi agreed, expressing concern about the very real differences between fully online courses and those taken in person, noting further that there is a risk of creating an economic subclass of students. She praised the altruistic, democratizing impulses of the MOOC model, explaining that she supported providing greater access, but worried about charging for an NYU degree which would be radically different in quality. Mike Beckerman noted the potential for creating a class of “student consumer” that sees faculty and courses as interchangeable, since similar online courses would likely be offered by multiple institutions. Dalton suggested that online offerings might best be framed as an option for students for whom a residential education at an NYU portal is impossible, e.g., because they are homebound or because they are unable to leave their country. Aswath Damodaran stressed the need for the University—whatever it decides to do vis-à-vis online courses and programs—to develop a strategy and way of responding when other institutions move in this direction. Tom Augst observed that student and faculty travel and site-specific learning are fundamental to NYU’s strategic positioning as a Global Network University and that this fact must also be taken into account in discussions of our online strategy. He noted further that these discussions must also engage faculty to reflect upon best practices of teaching and learning.
Rick proposed that two subgroups might be formed to explore these topics, one on GNU-specific issues and another on access and policy implications. No decision was made on that suggestion.

4. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students
Rick proposed creating a subcommittee to focus on the consultative process and to develop a coherent strategy for soliciting input from faculty colleagues. The following committee members agreed to serve on this group: Mike Beckerman, Gigi Dopico-Black, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, and Shankar Prasad. The group will propose 10-20 ideas for engaging faculty in a discussion about technology-enhanced education; they will report back in two weeks. Gigi encouraged the other committee members to share with the group any suggestions that they may have.

The meeting adjourned at 1:00 p.m.


Meeting of February 12, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Communicating to the NYU community

a. Letter to the community
b. Preview of the public website

4. Presentation on “digital natives” and their learning styles—Marc Wais (Vice President for Global Student Affairs) and
    Peter Schilling (Associate Vice President for Academic Innovation, GTS)
5. Instructional support and technology staffing update (Tom Delaney)
6. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students (Rick Matasar)—
    for meeting on 2/26


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for February 12, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for February 12, 2013

Meeting of Tuesday, February 12, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Review and approval of minutes
3. Communicating to the NYU community

a.Letter to the community
b.Preview of the public website

4. Presentation on “digital natives” and their learning styles—Marc Wais (Vice President for Global Student Affairs) and Peter Schilling (Associate Vice President for Academic Innovation, GTS)
5. Instructional support and technology staffing update (Tom Delaney)
6. Further discussion of strategies for in-person consultation/engagement with faculty and students (Rick Matasar)—for meeting on 2/26

Present: Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Richard Cole, Dalton Conley, Aswath Damodaran, Tom Delaney, Carol Hutchins, Mitchell Joachim, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ben Maddox, Rick Matasar, Patricio Navia, Joyce O’Connor, Russ Neuman, Keith O’Brien, DanO’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Ryan Poynter, Shankar Prasad, Peter Schilling, Victoria Stanhope, Marc Triola.

Absent: Karen Adolph, Joshua Blank, Gigi Dopico-Black, Ted Magder, Matthew Santirocco.

SUMMARY

1. Announcements

As per the committee’s request at its January 30 meeting, meetings will be reported in two formats: bulleted summaries and longer minutes.

2. Communicating to the NYU community

  • Letter to the community. Approval was given to revisions to a draft email to the NYU community about the committee’s work and its public website. [Subsequent to the meeting, the email was sent out on February 22, coincident with the launch of the committee’s public website.]
  • Preview of the public website. The committee got an advanced viewing of its public website. Discussion focused on the interactive component of the site.

3. Presentations on “digital natives” and their learning styles
Marc Wais (Vice President for Global Student Affairs) visited the committee to present on the work of the Office of Interactive Media, and committee member Peter Schilling presented on ways that instructional technology can be used to enhance learning among so-called “digital natives.” The ensuing conversation focused on the need to continue, in this new environment, teaching students to do things that they are not comfortable doing, e.g. long-form writing.

MINUTES

1. Announcements
Matthew Santirocco was unable to attend due to illness. In his absence, Ryan Poynter co-chaired the meeting with Rick Matasar, who was in Atlanta at a conference and participated via teleconference.

Ryan circulated copies of the January 14 and January 30 minutes, noting that both sets of minutes were now accompanied by bulleted summaries, as the committee had requested at its last meeting.

2. Communicating to the NYU community
a) Letter to the community. Ryan circulated a revised draft of the email to the NYU community about the committee’s work and the creation of its public website. He explained that the new draft incorporated suggestions from the three Faculty Senators (Mark Alter, Carol Hutchins, and Ted Magder). The committee approved this revision. [Subsequent to the meeting, the email was sent out on February 22, coincident with the launch of the committee’s public website (on which, see 2b below).]

b) Preview of the public website. Lillian Moran, an Instructional Technologist at Global Technology Services (GTS), visited the group to demonstrate the various features of the public website, which will link to the “University Initiatives” page on the NYU website. Lillian explained that the committee’s website includes both a public and a password-protected section. Within this password-protected section (accessible to all members of the NYU community) are meeting agendas, summaries, and minutes, as well as an interactive component that enables users to submit comments. Ben Maddox reported that the GTS team was prepared to triage the submissions and to elevate to Matthew and Rick any comments that should be shared with the committee and that might need a response.

3. Presentations on “digital natives” and their learning styles
Marc Wais (Vice President for Global Student Affairs) visited the committee to present on the work of the Office of Interactive Media. Marc shared with the group several observations about social and behavioral norms of young people in the age of interactive media. He noted that the paramount goal of the Division of Student Affairs is to connect with, communicate with, and engage NYU students, and to do so in their space, in their time, and on their terms, and in an environment in which technology is changing rapidly. At present, this involves extensive use of text messages, Twitter, and other social media.

Peter Schilling then presented on ways that instructional technology can be used to enhance learning among so-called “digital natives.” He showed a video interview of an architectural historian at Amherst who switched from a lecture- and text-based teaching method, in which students have a more passive role, to having students use software to engage more actively with the art of cathedral building. He also circulated a PowerPoint presentation that charts the roles of faculty and students across four stages of integration of instructional technology: “Same Task/New Technology,” “Digitize Collections,” “Born Digital,” and “Blend Real and Virtual.”

A lively discussion followed these two presentations. Rick observed that teaching with technology does not necessarily involve catering to shorter attention spans, and that we need to examine how we can continue, in this new environment, to teach students to do things that they are not comfortable doing, e.g., long-form writing. Jan Plass expressed concern about the sequence of the two presentations, noting that communication with students is distinct from teaching and learning. He noted that students will pay attention if they are engaged by the instructor, which does not necessarily imply the use of technology. What is needed, rather, is for instructional technology to be married with innovative teaching methods. Dalton Conley cautioned that many conversations about the use of instructional technology imply that students are customers that we need to please. He stressed the need to regain focus on what we want students in a course to do, rather than on what they would prefer to do. Both Jan and Patricio Navia replied that integrating technology into the classroom does not necessarily mean that traditional forms of assessment (e.g., long-form writing) need to be jettisoned. Students could, for example, be asked to submit both written essays and projects that are more technology-oriented.

The meeting adjourned at 2:30 p.m.


Meeting of January 30, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Instructional support and technology staffing update (Tom Delaney)
3. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities (Rick Matasar)
4. Continuation of last meeting’s “housekeeping”/organizational discussions

a. Teleconferencing and the sharing of documents
b. Revisions to the charge
c. Process for drafting and approving meeting summaries/minutes
d. Inventory of existing technology-enhanced courses
e. Communicating to the community
f. Strategies for faculty consultation


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for January 30, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for January 30, 2013

Meeting of January 30, 2013

AGENDA

1. Announcements
2. Instructional support and technology staffing update (Tom Delaney)
3. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities (Rick Matasar)
4. Continuation of last meeting’s “housekeeping”/organizational discussions

a. Teleconferencing and the sharing of documents
b. Revisions to the charge
c. Process for drafting and approving meeting summaries/minutes
d. Inventory of existing technology-enhanced courses
e. Communicating to the community
f. Strategies for faculty consultation

Present: Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Michael Beckerman, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Aswath Damodaran, Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Carol Hutchins, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ben Maddox, Ted Magder, Rick Matasar, Patricio Navia, Keith O’Brien, Joyce O’Connor, Dan O’Sullivan, Ryan Poynter, Shankar Prasad, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling, Marc Triola

Absent: Karen Adolph, Dalton Conley, Mitch Joachim, Jan Plass, Victoria Stanhope.

SUMMARY

1. Announcements

  • There was consensus that a contact list (including members’ email addresses and office telephone numbers) should be posted to the committee’s public website.
  • An email will be sent to the NYU community to provide an update on the committee’s work and to announce the creation of the public website. A draft of this email will be shared in advance with the group.
  • Russ Neuman (John Derby Evans Professor of Media Technology at the University of Michigan), who is a Visiting Professor at Steinhardt this year, will join the meetings as a consultant to the committee.
  • NYU-Poly’s online graduate engineering program was ranked #9 in the U.S. News and World Report 2013 edition of “Best Online Programs.”

2. Continuation of last meeting’s “housekeeping”/organizational discussions
(a) Revisions to the charge. It was agreed that revised charge would be posted to the public website in a bulleted format. Committee members were asked to send any further essential edits to Matthew Santirocco and Rick Matasar.

(b) Process for drafting and approving meeting summaries/minutes. It was agreed that Ryan Poynter would continue to draft meeting minutes, which would be vetted by the committee then posted to the public website, along with a brief abstract.

(c) Communicating to the community. There was a discussion about in-person and online strategies for consultation. In regard to the proposed interactive feature on the public website, the committee discussed a few options, including a Qualtrics survey and a comment thread on the bulleted charge. It was agreed that a curated list of NYU-appropriate articles about technology-enhanced education would be included on the website. The committee also agreed that venues for in-person consultation could include departmental meetings, school-wide faculty meetings, University-wide committees, and public town halls.

3. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities
There was a brief discussion about Rick’s working discussion document (appended below). It was agreed that the topics on this list would be discussed in greater detail at future meetings, perhaps first in subcommittees and then in plenary sessions.

MINUTES

1. Announcements

Matthew Santirocco circulated a new version of the committee roster, which included the members’ email addresses and office telephone numbers. He noted, however, that some information was not available in the NYU directory, and he asked the group members to send him any missing information. The goal is to include this contact list on the committee’s public website in order to facilitate consultations with the NYU community. There was consensus among the members that their contact information should be posted on this site, along with the charge, meeting agendas and summaries, and other materials discussed. Matthew proposed that an email be sent to the NYU community, not only announcing the creation of this site but also describing the scope of the committee’s work and indicating possible consultation mechanisms. He promised to share a draft of this email with the group before sending it. [Subsequent to this meeting, on February 7, Matthew and Rick Matasar sent a draft email to the committee members for their review.]

Rick then introduced Russ Neuman, the John Derby Evans Professor of Media Technology at the University of Michigan, who is currently a Visiting Professor at Steinhardt and whose research interests include the use of new technology in education, particularly in assessment. He will attend the meetings as a consultant to this committee. Russ observed that he would like to be able to advise the committee not only on best practices but also on “worst practices,” since there are many illuminating examples of well-intentioned initiatives in this area that have resulted in failure. Matthew invited the group members to consult with Russ independently if they had questions or ideas to share with him.

Finally, Matthew reported that NYU-Poly’s online graduate engineering program was recently ranked #9 in the U.S. News and World Report 2013 edition of “Best Online Programs,” and he congratulated Poly on this impressive distinction.

2. Continuation of last meeting’s “housekeeping”/organizational discussions
(a) Revisions to the charge. Matthew distributed a revised version of the charge, which incorporated suggestions made by committee members since the 1/14 meeting. This charge was in two formats: bulleted and non-bulleted. He asked the group to let him and Rick know by the end of the week which format they preferred and whether there were any essential edits that needed to be made. [Subsequent to this meeting, on February 1, Matthew and Rick sent an email to the group, reminding them to submit any preferences and edits by the end of the day. Since the majority of those responding preferred the bulleted version, that is the one that will appear on our website.]

(b) Process for drafting and approving meeting summaries/minutes. Matthew circulated the minutes of the 1/30 meeting, which Ryan Poynter had prepared. Noting that minutes or summaries of committee meetings would be posted to the public website, Matthew asked the group whether they preferred such descriptive minutes (which attribute statements to individual members) or rather redacted summaries. Gigi Dopico-Black suggested that posting both formats on the website would demonstrate a real commitment to transparency. The group agreed that this was the best approach, noting that the summary could be just a brief abstract at the head of the minutes.

(c) Communicating to the community. There was a brief discussion about the proposed interactive components to the committee’s public website. Noting that there is always a risk of little or no use of these features by the community at large, Aswath Damodaran stressed the importance for making them user-friendly. Richard Cole remarked that emphasizing the notion of “interactivity” on the website might lead people to anticipate a response to the comments they post. Rick replied that open-ended questions often do not yield useful information, and suggesting that it might be preferable to solicit feedback through a Qualtrics survey. Tom Augst suggested appending a comment thread to the bulleted charge in order to focus participants’ feedback.

In regard to the proposal that a selection of articles be posted on the public website, Carol Hutchins noted that several articles have been published on this subject and that the committee’s selection should be thoughtfully curated and appropriate to NYU. Finally, the committee agreed that venues for in-person consultation could include departmental meetings, school-wide faculty meetings, University-wide committees, and public town halls.

3. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities
Rick led the group in a discussion of his working document on strategy and internal NYU issues. [A copy of this document is appended below.] Mike Beckerman expressed concern with the strategic goal of “Using Technology in Improving Teaching and Learning” [bullet I.A.], since this might imply that teaching has, to this point, been ineffective. Rick replied that rhetoric is important in this space, and that if “improving” is inappropriate, then another word (e.g., “enhancing”) should perhaps be used instead. Matthew remarked that “improving” teaching and learning should not be objectionable, since we as educators should feel comfortable with the idea that we can always be better at what we do. Along these lines, serious consideration needs to be given to how students’ learning styles have been transformed by social media and other new technologies. Beyond the imperative to meet students where they are, we also need to move them beyond this point, i.e. to prepare them to think computationally. Marc Triola replied that the School of Medicine had begun exploring education informatics in response precisely to these imperatives, as well as to changes in the medical profession. Barbara Krainovich-Miller noted that the College of Nursing’s accreditation standards now require that it demonstrate a robust use of technology in undergraduate education. Gigi stressed the importance of acknowledging that different parts of the University will likely end up in different places with respect to their use of instructional technology, and that some things will work in some divisions but not in others.

Aswath noted that the focus on the use of technology obscures the larger issue, viz., that universities have a business model that is under assault from the outside. Matthew replied that this is related to the larger question of access to higher education. Rick observed that the questions of what price our education is worth and how we can sustain this are ones that the University must address, and that NYU needs to become an institution that can rethink its business model if necessary.

The rest of the discussion touched briefly on outside partnering, open education, revenue, and intellectual property issues. Rick proposed that these and other topics on his list be addressed separately and in greater detail at future meetings, perhaps first in subcommittees and then in plenary sessions.

The meeting adjourned at 11:25 a.m.


Meeting of January 14, 2013

AGENDA

1. Welcome and introduction of members
2. Charge
3. Schedule of meetings and deadline(s) for committee report(s)
4. Strategies for transparency and faculty consultation
5. What is already in place at NYU

a. inventory of existing online initiatives
b. recent hiring of instructional technologists
c. organization of ITS/GTS and Library tech support services

6. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities


Read the Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for January 14, 2013

Committee Meeting Summary and Minutes for January 14, 2013

Meeting of January 14, 2013

AGENDA

1. Welcome and introduction of members
2. Charge
3. Schedule of meetings and deadline(s) for committee report(s)
4. Strategies for transparency and faculty consultation
5. What is already in place at NYU
a. inventory of existing online initiatives
b. recent hiring of instructional technologists
c. organization of ITS/GTS and Library tech support services
6. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities

Present: Karen Adolph, Mark Alter, Tom Augst, Joshua Blank, Richard Cole, Dalton Conley, Tom Delaney, Gigi Dopico-Black, Carol Hutchins, Mitch Joachim, Barbara Krainovich-Miller, Ben Maddox, Ted Magder, Rick Matasar, Joyce O’Connor, Dan O’Sullivan, Jan Plass, Ryan Poynter, Shankar Prasad, Matthew Santirocco, Peter Schilling, Victoria Stanhope, Marc Triola

Absent: Michael Beckerman, Aswath Damodaran, Patricio Navia, Keith O’Brien

SUMMARY

1. Welcome and introduction of members
Matthew Santirocco and Rick Matasar (co-chairs) welcomed the group and committee members introduced themselves. It was agreed that Global Technology Services would explore a Google-based collaborative utility to facilitate the sharing of documents within the committee.

2. Charge
Rick explained that the committee’s charge reflected conversations that had taken place among the Deans and the University leadership, and that the goal was to give the committee some very basic guidance. It was observed that the question of MOOCs is not addressed within the charge, and that “learning” should be included alongside “teaching” as a goal for enhancement via the use of technology. It was agreed that Matthew and Rick would solicit further edits to the charge via email and that these would be incorporated into a new draft.

3. Schedule of meetings and deadline(s) for committee report(s)
Matthew and Rick explained that the committee should prepare a progress report for the Provost by the end of the spring 2013 semester and that a final report would need to be submitted to the University-wide Teaching Technology Committee (part of a larger governance structure for investments in technology) by the end of the fall 2013 semester. It was suggested that, should this group become a standing committee, members should be elected and not only appointed.

4. Strategies for transparency and faculty consultation
It was agreed that the committee would have a public website where agendas, minutes/summaries, and other documents would be posted. It was also noted that strategies for in-person consultations with faculty would necessarily vary by school and that the Deans should be consulted about appropriate venues, e.g. departmental or school meetings. It was also suggested that committee members should also be identified as representatives for the various schools or (in the case of large schools, such as FAS) for divisions within the schools.

5. What is already in place at NYU?
It was agreed that an inventory of current technology-enhanced courses and online programs at NYU should be compiled. Members will be able to submit examples of such courses and programs via the committee’s website.

6. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities
It was agreed that Rick would walk the group through his “Working Document on Strategy and Internal NYU Issues” at the January 30 meeting.

MINUTES

1. Welcome and introduction of members
Rick Matasar and Matthew Santirocco welcomed the committee members and thanked them for their service. Regarding the composition of the committee, Matthew noted that the group includes representatives from virtually every school at NYU, in addition to three representatives from the Faculty Senators Council. He noted that Keith O’Brien, who was unable to attend the meeting, had suggested Webex as an alternative to teleconferencing, since this collaborative utility would facilitate the sharing of documents among the committee members. Peter Schilling noted that NYU has a university-wide license with Google, and that various Google applications could provide this functionality, as well as security. Matthew asked Peter to see if it would be possible to arrange for this in time for the next meeting on January 30.

2. Charge
There was a robust discussion about the committee charge. Rick explained that the charge reflected conversations that had taken place among the Deans and the University leadership, and that the goal was to give the committee some very basic guidance. Richard Cole observed that the current charge seemed, rather, to prejudge what the University should be doing in this space, particularly the references to “reaching new constituencies” and to “generating new revenue.” He noted further that the possibility of the University’s creating MOOCs was conspicuously absent from the charge. Matthew responded that MOOCs are, on the contrary, very much on the table as a possible initiative. Rick added that the charge alludes to this possibility in asking the committee to explore how the use of instructional technology might enable the University to “reduce financial and other impediments to access.” He observed that there is a general desire—on the part of both Trustees and students—for NYU to become more meaningfully and visibly engaged with technology-enhanced education, but that we need to have a clear strategic purpose. Two areas in which NYU has the potential to become a leader are the instructional use of gaming technology and the use of technology in formative assessment.

Carol Hutchins observed that, since the short length of the charge might draw some scrutiny when it is made public, there was good reason to ensure that it does not contain any serious flaws. Mark Alter noted that “learning” should be included alongside “teaching” as a goal for enhancement via the use of technology. Jan Plass proposed that the statement about new revenue be toned down or contextualized, in order to convey that this is not the sole or primary focus of NYU’s efforts in this area. He also suggested that consultations take place not only with members of the NYU community but also with experts from outside the University (and, as Peter Schilling added, from outside the field of higher education). Finally, Jan stressed the need for the committee to propose evaluation strategies for any technologies that it decides to support. Rick agreed that this is very important, noting that ITS and GTS have made the development of evaluation strategies a priority.

It was agreed that Matthew and Rick would solicit further edits to the charge via email and that these would be incorporated into a new draft.

3. Schedule of meetings and deadline(s) for committee report(s)
Gigi Dopico-Black asked whether a deadline had been set for the group’s report, and also whether this was a standing or multi-year committee. She suggested that, should the committee ever take on a more permanent status, serious consideration should be given to having a membership that is elected rather than appointed. Matthew replied that the group was not understood to be a standing committee but had originally been conceived of as a subcommittee of the Teaching Technology Committee (TTC). The latter is an all-University group of faculty and technology experts that is part of a larger governance structure for investments in technology. Although now understood as a committee of its own right, this Faculty Committee will nonetheless submit its report to the TTC, since its recommendations may have budgetary implications. With regard to deadlines, Rick explained that the Provost was expecting a progress report from the committee by the end of the spring semester; the timing for the final report has not yet been determined, but would probably be at the end of the fall 2013 semester.

4. Strategies for transparency and faculty consultation
Matthew suggested that a good model for working transparently might be the University Space Priorities Working Group (USPWG), which will post to its website not only its membership and charge but also meeting summaries and other documents. Peter suggested that the committee use Google Drive as its platform, since it is password-protected and secure. Ted Magder, who chairs the USPWG, clarified that none of the information on that group’s website is password-protected and that all documents posted there are open to the public. It was agreed that the committee would discuss and resolve this issue at its January 30 meeting.

There was also a discussion about strategies for consultation with faculty across the University. It was agreed that these consultations should involve not only online solicitation of input (ideally through the committee’s website), but also in-person meetings. It was noted that there would likely be some variation among the schools as to appropriate venues. Since some hold regular and well-attended school-wide meetings, whereas in other schools individual departments are the locus of governance and communication, it was suggested that the Deans of each school should be consulted regarding the best ways of reaching their faculties. Another option that was discussed was holding University-wide town halls. Tom Augst also suggested inviting chairs to include instructional technology as a line item on departmental meetings, and Gigi added that it could also be a line item on FAS departments’ Annual Planning Reports (APRs). In terms of virtual consultations, Rick observed that several options exist (e.g., crowdsourcing, wikis) and he suggested that GTS propose some strategies at the next meeting.

Finally, Gigi suggested that consultations should be bidirectional, i.e., that members of the committee should not only fan out to departments and schools but each should also be identified as the point person on the committee for a specific unit. There was general agreement among the group. Matthew proposed sending a follow-up email to solicit the members’ ideas about this and other consultative mechanisms.

5. What is already in place at NYU?
Various members of the committee stressed the need to compile an inventory of programs and courses that use instructional technology in a significant way. In response to Carol’s question about whether such an inventory would be restricted to credit-bearing activities, Rick observed that it is best to look broadly at what is happening at NYU, otherwise we won’t capture everything. It was agreed that Matthew and Rick would send an email to the group soliciting information about current initiatives, to be entered into a uniform grid. Joshua Blank noted that it may be preferable not to post every new initiative on a public website, since this information would be accessible to competing programs at other institutions. It was decided that the members should feel free to indicate in their responses whether certain programs should not be shared publicly.

Tom Delaney agreed to postpone to the next meeting his presentation on the hiring of instructional technologists at NYU.

6. Overview of online issues, strategies, and opportunities
It was agreed that Rick would walk the group through his “Working Discussion Document on Strategy and Internal NYU Issues” at the next meeting and that the committee members would review the document in advance. On a related note, Rick reported that the Office of General Counsel was preparing a document about IP rules in the current digital environment. He promised to share this document with the committee as soon as it is ready.

The meeting adjourned at 3:15 p.m.

[Subsequent to the meeting, Rick and Matthew sent an email to the committee on January 16, soliciting feedback about (a) changes to the charge, (b) ideas for consultative mechanisms, and (c) topics of interest that might be added to the rolling agenda. There will be another follow-up email soliciting information for the inventory.]


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