It’s been awhile since you have seen much from us in ETUG, but I bet you can imagine what we have all been doing. As folks working in eLearning, as I am for example, we have been busy helping our institutions and faculty putting courses and materials online, and running innumerable workshops to support those faculty around what it means to teach online, and use all the technologies (some of them even new to us!) we support. For some of us, the transition has been easier than for others, depending on how many of our programs are already online, and how those programs were supported before the pandemic hit. For others, it has been much more challenging, depending on how many people are in our support units, what online teaching tools already exist in institutions, and how many faculty already know how to teach online.
I want to give a big shout-out to BCcampus who has been doing an amazing job supporting faculty and institutions who are sorting through all the complications of moving courses online, especially those courses where face-to-face, hands-on, and applied learning are crucial.
And now, we on your Stewardship Committee are finally able to take a bit of a breath and step back slightly from our institutional commitments to ask you, how can we help? Please take a few moments to answer our survey (linked in the ETUG Newsletter) so we can best meet what you might need over the next few months. For example, we could offer some online workshops, or virtual discussion sessions, if those are something you would like to see.
Also related to this survey, we need to announce that, to keep all our members safe, our ETUG Fall Workshop will be moved to an online event. We are sad because we were all looking forward to meeting up at Douglas College this fall, but hope we can have a face-to-face event there sometime in the future. Some of our survey questions will ask you what you would prefer to see in an event like this.
Finally, we are creating a space for you to tell your stories of moving online as COVID hit us. Keith Webster has set up a Splot Writer (a WordPress site where you can add your own posts), which you will also see linked in our Newsletter. Sometimes it helps to see what everyone else has been doing, and what struggles we are facing, as it will hopefully remind us all that we are not alone.
So, thanks for listening – we miss you, and hope to see you again soon, even if virtually.
Take care, and stay safe!
Emily Schudel, Chair, SCETUG