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[Fall workshop 2013] Summary Feedback

workshop-feedback_fall2013It’s been a busy 2 weeks after the ETUG Fall workshop 2013, “Royal Crossroads: Avenues for Quality”,held on November 15th in Victoria. We would like to thank Royal Roads University for their warm welcome,especially the wonderful CTET team. We had a full house of well over 100 participants which is an amazing number for a Fall workshop on the island. We would also like to thank George Veletsianos for his inspiring keynote to start off our explorations of quality values in education such as diversity, engagement, creativity and flexibility.
We asked for feedback on what worked well at this event and what we could improve for future workshops. As is our practice post-event, we are sharing out the feedback. Here is a summary of  the 20 responses we’ve received to date. A link to the full responses is also included. If you did not get a chance to provide your feedback, or have additional comments or ideas for ETUG, please complete the survey or send a note to Contactus@etug.ca/.

Summary – See complete responses

How many years have you attended ETUG workshops?

This was my first year 8 40%
2 years 3 15%
3 years 0 0%
4 years 2 10%
5+ years 7 35%
I have attended ALL of them! 0 0%

What did you think of the theme for this workshop: “Royal Crossroads:Avenues for Quality”?

The theme didn’t interest me. 2 10%
It was alright. 7 35%
It was great! 11 55%

On average, were the sessions too short, too long or the right length?

Too long 3 15%
Too short 1 5%
Just right 16 80%

Please provide a comment or two on the workshop sessions? What stood out for you? What could be improved?

What stood out for you? What could be improved?
Workshop format 
  • The sessions switched over very efficiently — I like not having to choose between sessions and I thought there was a nice mix.
  • What stood out was the single stream approach. Never felt I missed anything.
  • Maybe a few concurrent sessions during morning or afternoon would have helped.
  • I would like to have the option to choose more among more sessions.
  • it would have been great to have more time for plenary contributions on the sessions.
  • I think two streams of concurrent sessions would allow more presenters but still be effective. I would not want to get into a bunch of concurrent choices.
Session Topic
  • George’s presentation was entertaining and thought-provoking. I was inspired by Derek Masselink’s presentation and the work that his students were doing in the gardens at Royal Roads.
  • I was impressed with the level of innovativity (is that a word?). I thought that was more of a theme that emerged than quality -although the two can be very closely connected.
  • The diversity of expertise stood out for me
  • The selections were excellent and of very high quality.
  • Great speakers on relevant topics!
  • I am not keen on the concept of a Q ‘n A after the speaker — hard to hear the question, and it might not be relevant.
  • Sometimes wasn’t sure how they fit with the quality theme
  • A minor quibble, but the last session of the day was called ” quality matters” and I was expecting and looking forward to something on the Quality Matters qui declines but I couldn’t see a connection, although the research was interesting. Maybe just a bad session title.
  • Not sure what the last presentation was really about.
  • I found a few of the sessions by the RRU presenters were not really geared towards educational technology; they were interesting, but not really relevant.
  • Sessions were great for the most part. The Thinking Session What do teachers need to know about technology for high quality education? was my least favourite – didn’t really raise any new questions, just gave people a chance to talk.
Session Format
  • The active sessions were the most engaging for me ( ie when presenters had us do stuff vs. just sit).
  • Lots of intriguing ideas. The table questions were great, as we learned from each other.
  • I liked the level of interactivity with some sessions.
  • Great combination of formats – table talk and stand and deliver.
  • The variety was good, but some structured discussion about applying learning from the presentations would have been an added bonus.
  • was expecting more direct discussion/comparison of how institutions are dealing with this.
  • The last session was really difficult to take part in since there was so much to do and it was the last session of the day.
  • Could we make the case studies more interactive? As educators and users of technology, there were many examples of “sage on the stage”. I realize that the ETUG steering committee does not put together the presentations, but wouldn’t it be great if we could set a really high bar for interaction?
Session Length
  • Kinda liked the variation in session lengths. Some seemed maybe a bit rushed but still it was a treat to be exposed to so many different topics – like a smorgasbord.
  • Many of the sessions seemed a bit rushed, it might have been better to reduce and plan breaks in between the session to allow for technology setup.
  • The day was too long for sitting in a chair in a large room with a constant din. I was exhausted nearing the end and not able to fully participate in the last session. Maybe it was because the topic I was most interested in was the second to last session in the afternoon, so after that I was ready to disengage from the event.
  • Food was great.
  • I also liked meeting new folks.
  • Enough time network during breakfast, lunch and between sessions.
  • Great food, good time.
  • the venue was great
  • More time for networking would have been good.

What was your favorite thing(s) about the workshop? Is there a “takeaway” or idea from the workshop that you plan to try out in the near future? 

  • Geeks with gadgets – the casual,playing and sharing about tech in all the side conversations – we should be unapologetic about playing with technology (of course, in a way that’s relevant for learning). Also love hearing what others are doing in courses and with research and other institutional initiatives. Favourite thing for me was the graphic recording
  • The networking was key. Please structure more facilitated structures to move people around in groups. Also plan more unstructured time for people to mingle and connect.
  • I love the way you built in the social networking aspect. We need time to connect and catch up on the latest happenings.
  • I appreciated Ross’s discussion of evaluating the different quality guidelines. This was very helpful as we are examining various models. I was hoping there would there would bore discussions/sharing about how various institutions are dealing with this.
  • Eva Malisius’s presentation gave me some practical ideas on how to build community into an online course but more important was how to evaluate the students’ contributions. That was not an easy task.
  • like George velatsianos’s ideas about openness, teacher vulnerability etc. Also like the ideas about students as producers. These are takeaway ideas for me.
  • Student as producers – UBC presentation was good and the notion of not using a LMS. Just wondering about student privacy with using so many social media tools.
  • Use of wikis. Use of popcorn maker. Couch surfing.
  • Loved the treasure hunt for networking.
  • The collaboration project involving Wikipedia was something I would like to explore or pass on the idea to my colleagues.
  • The social event the night before was ideal for putting me at ease about attending ETUG for the first time. As a grad student, I occasionally feel intimidated that I don’t know as much as the professionals working in this field. The workshop was a reminder that we are learning best practices in the ed tech field, and I also have something to offer – like thoughts on BYOD in the public schools!
  • I will take up the issue of “just in case” and “just in time” with our faculty. They teach way too much content that is in the former and this could be a filter in reducing unnecessary content.
  • To read the book “How people learn” mention by the people from UBC.
  • I’m interested in learning more about Mozilla popcorn maker.
  • George Veletsianos keynote was intriguing.
  • some useful things to consider when planning a workshop for faculty members.

What was your favorite session and why?

  • I liked Carson’s for the design (active, though light on content), Amanda and Eva for sharing practice and a tool . Okanagan crew for sharing a quality framework is probably my top pick for usefulness
  • All were pretty good.
  • Discussing the questions with my table-mates was most valuable. I thought George’s presentation was thought-provoking and creative.
  • The session bu Amanda and Eva that walked us through the development of a new learning activity and the lessones learned. Would like to see more sessions like this.
  • Dr. Valerie Irvine’s session. honest and forward looking.
  • The idea of “multi-access” as defined by Valerie Irvine intrigued me. I have always just accepted the importance of defining the delivery method when describing a course or program. Dr. Irvine urged us to consider an alternative and to question why we need to have a separate category for online or blended programs.
  • Probably the first one, Valerie Irvine, multi-access classrooms. Many of the sessions were kinda ‘fun’ or really philosophical (which is ok too) but the discussion about multi-access classrooms gave me something a bit more grounded, something i might be able to move forward at my institution
  • I really enjoyed the conversation around “What do teachers need to know about technology for high quality education?” and the “Are you ready for Conflict Analysis and management Practice? Assessing quality, academic rigor, and innovation.”
  • The RRU fellow who presented on governance and sustainability – just sounded so innovative – would have liked to seen more details about his course.
  • Eva and Amanda’s presentation and Derek’s.
    It was interesting to hear real life stories and how the students responded to the exercises/course. Great to hear new things being tried.
  • The Popcorn Maker – a great and innovative way to build a community and integrating the use of technology into an academic course. Lots of food for thought on how to balance content and technology
  • Beyond Blended: Realigning Higher Education for Multi-Access Learning – interested in Valerie’s definition of Multi-Access and examples
    Case Studies on Students as Producers – Loved hearing about some of he collaborative projects the students are working on.
    Just in Case Vs. Just in Time Learning Models – Carson’s energy was infectious and needed at that time of day. His topic was thought provoking
  • I loved the keynote because the graphic facilitation kept the message at the top of my mind all day. I also really enjoyed the JIC/JIT playfulness in the afternoon.
  • Hard to choose, but George the keynote had many good messages.
  • I don’t have one session that is a favourite. I liked them all! 🙂
  • Cultivating a Community of Praxis: Affecting Change through Ambiguity, Fidelity and Possibility by Derek Masselink was very good. Great presentation and innovative idea.
  • The Just in time session was really fun.

What did you think of the venue?

  • Nice big room! Everyone and food together was great. Wonderful to have people at RRU
  • I love the Quarterdeck! Great job on the 3 screens.
  • Love the QD at RRU.
  • Gorgeous, friendly.
  • The venue was great. I loved being back at Royal Roads, even if it was a rainy day.
  • The staff on hand did an excellent job – from the catering to the tech support.
  • Wifi cut out!
  • Great location! The room was good. Wifi was so-so.
  • I like the setting – it was spacious and of course close to home :-). The weather was nasty – but what can you do???
  • Great place, but maybe a little too cramped for the size of the group.
  • Great venue! Wish it had been the June ETUG though so that we could enjoy the grounds more
  • The Quarterdeck is big enough, and I LOVE Royal Roads (as an RRU student, I’m allowed to be biased) but at the same time, it can feel cold and echoey. Thank goodness for great lights and audio.
  • I was worried at first look but it worked wiel thanks to the mic runners and great tec support.
  • To be honest, the additional expense and effort to get to RRU was not worth it. The grounds/garden/castle etc were not incorporated into the conference so we might as well have been in any new building anywhere. I think the cost of getting from the airport to RRU was extreme and that the cost of travel in general deterred a lot of participants who don’t live on the island. The residence was inexpensive but the beds were quite awful in the end. I would not recommend such an out of the way location for a one day workshop in the future.
  • awkward room layout, too long & wide to really see what was happening at either end. sound was lousy, often could not hear what presenters were saying as they either wouldn’t stay close to the podium mic. the lapel mics did not project at the same volume.

If you attended the ETUG pub on Thursday at the Six Mile Pub – what did you think of the food, venue, overall experience? 

  • Beautiful. Loved it.
  • I arrived late but enjoyed the company of friends. I didn’t eat.
  • Six Mile Pub was a really nice venue. Fantastic service too. Noisy, but not overly.
  • I’m glad we could take over a section of the pub. The Chicken Pot Pie was delicious, the people were great, and I was one of a few people who stayed to the very end – about 10:30 pm.
  • It worked alright but we overwhelmed the small number of servers. It was a great pre-conference chat so this feature should continue.
  • The food was actually quite awful in the end. There was nowhere really close to RRU that was suitable so I guess that was ok. It was good to chat with people but the table layout minimized greater mingling. I was wishing I had visited a friend in the end rather than attending.

For 2013-2014, what sort of activities would you like to see from ETUG? And if you have a specific ideas, would you be willing to take the lead or lend a hand? (If so, please note your name below.)

  • Personally, I’m interested in operations – the nuts and bolts of how things happen in our day to day. Always interested in faculty engagement issues – how do we get faculty on board. Also facilitation generally – best practices and cool moves for facilitating sessions (online and off). And “favourite app sharing”. And a theme on “open Ed resources and texts: what are you REALLY doing? And why/not?”
  • Student engagement came up a lot as a need — many people told me they were never trained as teachers. Though they are subject matter experts, they do not have a basic understanding of pedagogical principles. This is my area of expertise (I teach in the M.A. in Educational Leadership program), so I am willing to help out.
  • Organized, small, mixed group exchanges at two points during the day
  • Can’t think of anything right now but I am willing to help out where needed.
  • I would like to see more new data from research, current status of “EdTech”, in the style that David Porter, from BC Campus uses to bring.
  • Designing engaging activities for learners at a distance.
  • How to effectively use social media without drowning in too much technology.
  • Have a debate topic – like MOOCS (good or bad?) and have presenters be prepared to debate – pros/cons and a have a judging team. Involve participants in some way.
  • Educational apps. Mobile learning
  • Looking forward to some Twitter-based #etug chats, for which I could volunteer to be there. Also, if we are going to walk our talk, let’s see how we can make ETUG workshops truly open and “multi-access”.
  • hands-on tech. more thinking sessions. active involvement with participants
  • more networking / interaction time

What could we have done better to improve your experience of the workshop?

  • Hmmmm…..Great people, fun swag, prizes, good sessions, great price, food, beautiful venue, well organized…..what could be added? Free chair massages? 😉
  • The 9:00 start proved a bit early for those of us arriving that morning.
  • Can’t think of any improvements – maybe do fewer sessions in the afternoon. It seemed very rushed for Nancy’s presentation. I wasn’t able to get as much out it as I would have liked to. I will read the paper for more details.
  • More network breaks. Some network breaks are as important as some sessions.
  • More networking time. I saw people there I wanted to say Hi to, but I didn’t get a chance..
  • I didn’t really fully understand the last session. It was way too high level for me. A summary of the study would have helped.
  • A hand out with all of the presenters contact info and links to resources, examples that they talked about.
  • Fewer sessions and 15min breaks between sessions.
  • There were too many sessions, a few more breaks were needed.
  • Having everything in one room was difficult since there was so much sitting in one place. Going from one room to another, like at the Spring ETUG at SFU, gives you an opportunity to get a bit of a break to get fresh air, stretch and rejuvenate the body and brain.
  • It would be neat to have had a member of the steering committee at each table. Are there that many steering committee members? As it was, I got to know a few long-time ETUG people, and was very glad for that experience.
  • Just do it again it was awesome. Perhaps mix up the tables break people out of established groups.
  • I just think the location choice was off for a one day workshop. The weather was wet and not conducive to really enjoying the grounds or having them built into the conference. It would have been a better locale for the Spring workshop. If the accommodation on site was so poor in many ways, then perhaps there should have been transport from a local hotel. With the cost of cabs, there was really not much choice. Personally, I think individuals paid the price (in money and convenience) for RRU having the chance to host.
  • The day was too long for sitting in a chair in a large room with a constant din. I was exhausted nearing the end and not able to fully participate in the last session. Maybe it was because the topic I was most interested in was the second to last session in the afternoon, so after that I was ready to disengage from the event.
  • Maybe a few concurrent sessions during morning or afternoon would have helped.
  • Some workshops can be more interactive rather then 100% lecture.

Please use this space to give us any additional feedback .

  • I heart etug! Thank you for everything you do!
  • Thank you for an excellent day.
  • Great job everyone.
  • I really enjoyed the workshop. It one of the few times I get any Professional Development. Even though I work in K-12, workplace training and trades – I found the sessions relevant.
  • Excellent job everyone!
  • It was great. I enjoyed it, thank you very much!
  • Thanks for a wonderful workshop and great day!! Your hard work on all the details really showed and paid off!!
  • Venue choice is always difficult and it was great to see so many from RRU. The Island presents difficulties for interior folks. Maybe coming to the interior now and then would be good.
  • thank you for this great conference.
  • I go whenever ETUG meets on Vancouver Island. So more island gigs would be my selfish suggestion.

Send us any ideas you like us to organize for a workshop theme or our monthly “lunch and learn” webinar sessions (T.E.L.L. sessions).

  • maybe some classroom management techniques, though I am not as skilled in the technology as I would like to be for online learning.
  • New technologies, use cases.
  • Using social media tools with real examples…. and best practices.
  • Any trends with learning and designing…..
  • Going beyond LMSs….
  • These can be topics for next year workshops too :-).
  • One of the most influential concepts I’ve learned in my ed tech education has been Bates and Poole’s SECTIONS model for choosing appropriate technological tools, which they updated from ACTIONS in 2003. I’d be happy to present a 2013 model which I took part in creating as a group project in one of our grad courses. SENTIMOS
  • creative uses of LMS examples

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