Universities partner to help teachers learn new technologies
Many K-12 teachers across the Valley soon will learn new ways to use technologies to better teach and inspire students.
Educators from six underserved schools will take part in "Teach-Tec," a certificate program that will show how technologies such as podcasting, text messaging and videoconferencing can serve as high-impact tools to enhance the learning experience.
This is the result of a unique partnership between Arizona State University, the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, and the Arizona Telemedicine Program at the College of Medicine.
"Through this outstanding partnership, teachers will better understand how to teach core subjects like science and math using cutting-edge technology," says Catherine Eden, director of ASU's Bob Ramsey Executive Education Program, which is awarding the certificate. "The program is also designed to foster collaboration between peer schools."
Faculty from the three program sponsors will train teachers in schools that were selected for their diverse student body, interest in the project and a history of successful collaboration. Course content will be recorded for future use by other educators throughout the state.
Participants will include teachers from schools in Maricopa County, Pima County and the Navajo and Hopi reservations. These include Health Science High School in Mesa and Genesis Academy High School in Phoenix.
"This will help teachers bring exciting innovation into the classroom," says Gail Barker, PhD, co-director of administration and finance of the Arizona Telemedicine Program, and a faculty member at the UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.
"They'll be using existing technology, so there won't be much expense putting what they learn to use right away."
The program is funded through the Arizona Regents Reach Out grant, which supports innovative, university-based distance-learning projects that are collaborative and help workforce development.
"Once the initial stage of this project is completed and evaluated, we will make this training available to all K-12 teachers in Arizona through such things as podcasts," said Kathryn Coe, associate professor in the UA College of Public Health, who also is collaborating on the program. "Not only will this project allow us to help build skills, but it will provide UA and ASU faculty with a novel opportunity to identify needs and interests of Arizona's teachers."
Teachers will take the 12-hour program in early August.
"This program wouldn't have come together so easily if the two campuses weren't so closely positioned in Downtown Phoenix," Eden says. "We're excited about continuing this partnership with future programs."
The Ramsey Program hopes to use training techniques from this pilot project to continue enhancing the use of technology in the public sector.
ASU's Ramsey program has produced nearly 12,000 graduates from its executive education courses since it began 25 years ago. The program, which provides innovative professional development programs that build the capacity of people and organizations that serve the public, is part of the School of Public Affairs within the ASU College of Public Programs at the Downtown Phoenix campus.
The Arizona Telemedicine Program is a large, multidisciplinary, university-based program that provides telemedicine services, distance learning, informatics training, and telemedicine technology assessment capabilities to communities throughout Arizona.
The Arizona Telemedicine Program site in Phoenix, called the T-Health Institute, is housed in the historic Phoenix Union High School building on the campus of The University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix in partnership with Arizona State University. For more information, please visit www.telemedicine.arizona.edu, or call (602) 827-2116.
The UA Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health is currently the only nationally accredited college of public health in the 12-state Mountain/Pacific region and provides both undergraduate and graduate education in population-based health disciplines to prepare students for professional and academic public health careers.