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A Web Letter from the Office of the Provost - February 2021

By Mary Jane Chew

Technology Advocates partner with instructors for student success

The Technology Advocates program is a new initiative that aims to improve undergraduate student learning and reduce technology burdens for instructors. 

The program was created in response to feedback from instructors and students at the close of fall semester. Both groups identified course technology as an area where more support was needed for spring.

Technology Advocates are undergraduate students who can assist instructors with their Brightspace courses, streaming and lecture capture tools, and other instructional technologies related to their courses. Advocates can also answer student questions on these topics.

Seasoned and newer instructors who are working with Technology Advocates are finding the program very valuable.

“I was returning from sabbatical and therefore only had a couple of weeks to prepare for the Spring semester,” said Ruth Streveler, professor of engineering education. “Although I had used Brightspace before, I was quite rusty on how to make changes. I know the content of the course very well (I have taught it many times). It was great to have someone I could call on to help me with the technology as I revised the course.” 

The Advocates are also contributing to student success. Caitlin Proctor, an assistant professor in agricultural and biological engineering, says her advocate has been an important liaison between her and her students.

“Camille Lerasan (my Technology Advocate) attended class the first day and was able to help students figure out and trouble-shoot BoilerCast access issues in real-time,” said Proctor. “Since day one, she’s helped me verify that the student view is as I want it, and has directed students on how to use certain features of the website.”

The initiative is a collaboration between Teaching and Learning, college IT staff, Innovative Learning, and ITaP.

Instructors who want to request a Technology Advocate should complete this request form.

For additional questions, contact: Sheila Hurt, sfotherg@purdue.edu

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