University of Calgary

SmartBoards

April 26, 2011

Making teachers and students ‘Smart’er

By Clayton MacGillivray

Education Information Technologies partner, Weston Yoshimura, helped manage the installation of new SmartBoards for the education faculty. Photo credit: Clayton MacGillivrayEducation Information Technologies partner, Weston Yoshimura, helped manage the installation of new SmartBoards for the education faculty. Photo credit: Clayton MacGillivrayThe Faculty of Education has always been a leader in the use of technology in learning. Today, more than ever, teachers must be adept in the use of technology in the classroom; it is with this understanding of the needs of 21st century learning that the faculty has acquired four new SmartBoards

Education Information Technologies partner Weston Yoshimura and his team managed this initiative from the beginning and are excited about the possibilities increased access to this equipment offers faculty and students.

“The installation of SmartBoard products has been a strategic initiative in several Alberta school boards including both CBE [Calgary Board of Education] and CSSD [Calgary Catholic School District], having the equipment available to students for teaching and learning in the Faculty of Education will provide an experiential leaning environment assisting the transition of teachers to their professional environments,” says Yoshimura.

But technology is just one part of the equation. Successful teaching only happens when teachers use the tools at their disposal to craft solid lessons that engage their students. To this end, the faculty drew upon graduate student Trisa Soroski, who is completing her Masters degree in Educational Technology, to bring the instructors up to speed.

“Trisa is able to provide a pedagogical teaching workshop on the classroom use of SmartBoards beyond an entry level technical workshop, this provides participants some considerations for context for the practical implications of integrating the Smart hardware and software into their teaching practices,” explains Yoshimura.

Yoshimura says the technology upgrade is the result of a long-term partnership between the faculty and ComMedia; a partnership that will benefit both parties by reducing equipment shortages and staffing costs. He adds that the program would not have been possible without the support of Dennis Sumara, education faculty dean and Vicki Schwean, education faculty professor, and their understanding of the value of classroom infrastructure enhancement.

All SmartBoards are available to faculty and students when classes are not in session. The new permanent SmartBoards reside in EdT 1220a, EdT 1220b and EdC 370a with plans for further installations during the Summer semester.


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