Thursday, February 21, 2008

Technology Day to educate participants

By Courtney Westlake

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The 8th annual Technology Day will be held Wednesday, February 27, from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the lower level of the PAC. The theme for the event is "Building iCommunity: Toolsets for Today."

"We chose this theme because we wanted to highlight the ways that technology is used to build community, particularly in education," said Tulio Llosa, director of Educational Technology at UIS. "Technology Day is important to participants because of the wide variety of learning opportunities that it affords. We believe that participants will walk away from Technology Day with at least one new idea or tool to implement in their teaching, learning or work."

Both UIS participants and community members will have no problem finding a presentation or poster session that suits their interests or needs, Llosa said.

"The purpose for Technology Day is to be an outreach not only to UIS community but to local school districts and community members who also might be interested in learning about new technology and how to use that new technology to do the things that make sense in their lives," said Vickie Cook, professor of Educational Leadership who is on the planning committee for the event.

The keynote speaker for the event is Ann Peterson Bishop, associate professor in the graduate school of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and co-director of the Community Informatics Initiative. She will speak at 12 p.m. about ways that technology is being used at UIUC to build bridges between the university and community, Llosa said.

There will also be a variety of poster sessions and workshops throughout the afternoon on topics like podcasting, E-waste recycling, Photoshop, public social networking, organization in online courses, and much more.

Technology Day organizers hope the workshops and sessions will be utilized by teachers, students and other community members to learn how to access more information using technology, how to create items that might be of interest to them personally and professionally or simply to learn how to communicate effectively, Cook said.

"We're hoping that presenters will able to share with participants they ways they can use different types of technology tools to do the things they might be most interested in," she said.

Everyone who is interested is invited to come share the day, which is free and open to participants, Cook said. Prizes and light refreshments will be provided, and the campus community is encouraged to stop by and take part. For more information, check out the Technology Day Web site.

"We hope to have a good turnout from UIS students, staff and faculty, so they can learn more about the resources available to them," Llosa said. "And we hope to provide each participant with relevant learning experiences and creative, new technology-related ideas."

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