Choosing technology: considerating openness

Some time ago, Drs Tony Bates and Gary Poole developed a framework for technology use and selection called SECTIONS.  They described it in their book: Effective Teaching With Technology in Higher Education: Foundations for Success (2003)

We were looking for a resource to use to support faculty in making good decisions around technology use. We liked the SECTIONS model, but (in our view) a couple of things were missing:

  • a consideration of whether or not the technology supports an open approach (to content or participation)
  • a way for faculty to indicate the level of importance that they place on each of the considerations (for example, if the tool/approach does not support collaboration, is that a make or break issue?)

We also thought that we needed to refine the considerations in such a way that they would apply to a specific learning context, class or even learning activity – more at the level of an instructor’s concern than an administrator.

This is what we came up with as a draft.  We are starting to pilot its use through our Centre for Teaching and Academic Growth (which we are about to join forces with to become the Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology).

At any rate, have a look, feel free to use and send us your comments/feedback and critiques.

Assessing Technology: Using the SECTIONS model (view and download the pdf)

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