3.4.12 Technology use
Judgement of Compliance:
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) uses technology to enhance student learning. This technology is appropriate for meeting the objectives of UTC’s programs. Students have access to and training in the use of technology.
The Assistant Vice Chancellor oversees the Information Technology Division (ITD) and serves as the Chief Information Officer. The mission statement of ITD reads:
to provide Students, Faculty, and Staff Information Technology services that are available, reliable, responsive, cost effective and delivered in a courteous, proactive manner.
Enhances Student Learning
UTC has over 120 classrooms equipped with podiums consisting of a computer with Internet access, DVD player, and a VCR all connected to a ceiling-mounted projector. This arrangement allows faculty to integrate technology into class instruction and have it projected on a large screen.
A few academic departments have computer classrooms that are used by faculty to enhance the students’ learning experience. These classrooms are equipped with software and technology needed for that particular course. Examples can be found in the Department of Music, the Department of Foreign Languages, and the Department of Interior Design. The Information Technology computer lab has a classroom that can be reserved by faculty for teaching classes.
Blackboard Academic Suite (Blackboard) is used by faculty in traditional classrooms as a supplement to their instruction and for online courses. Blackboard allows faculty to post class-related materials (e.g. homework assignments, grades, class notes) in a central location accessible to all students enrolled in that class. Blackboard allows students to submit completed homework assignments, participate in discussion forums, and collaborate using the chat and virtual lecture rooms. There is online training and instruction (http://utconline.utc.edu) for students on the use of Blackboard's features. The Walker Teaching Resource Center (WTRC) offers regular seminars for faculty on the use of Blackboard.
The Division of Continuing Education coordinates off-campus academic credit programs at UTC. One of the primary means of extending the borders of our campus is through the use of videoconferencing technology. The Lupton Library also offers Education services for Distance learning.
Appropriate for Meeting Program Objectives
Examples of the use of technology to meet program objectives can be found in each college. An excellent example of this use of technology to meet program objectives is found in the College of Engineering and Computer Science.
The new Engineering, Math, and Computer Science building opened in 2003 with state-of-the-art research laboratories and classrooms. Laboratories, hardware, and software are essential to achieving program goals in Engineering and Computer Science. These program objectives are defined as
- the ability to apply fundamental knowledge in engineering sciences, mathematics, physics, chemistry, and computer applications with programming
- the ability to use engineering principles and modern engineering tools to identify, analyze, and solve engineering problems
- the ability to design and conduct experiments, collect, analyze and interpret data, and use modern computer-based tools to evaluate problems
- the ability to design systems, components, or processes using a structured design process
All engineering programs include laboratories which use various type of technology ranging from software to physical devices. These laboratories are integral to the engineering and computer science curricula. For example, every engineering freshman participates in an engineering science laboratory that supports the first engineering physics course. In this course, students use various physical devices to test theory learned in the classroom. They use software to gather and analyze the data. There are many such laboratories used throughout the four-year curricula. These labs are integral to the students’ learning and application of the fundamentals of the engineering sciences.
Many software packages (ProModel, Minitab, SolidWorks, Microsoft Word- Excel-Visio-Project Management, LabView, Matlab, Maple etc.) are used throughout the curricula to simulate processes and stresses, analyze data, and virtually design devices. For example, the software package SolidWorks is used from the freshman year through the senior year to virtually design devices such as tables and toys for children with disabilities (freshmen) to the parts of the Mini Baja (seniors). This software is also used by seniors to virtually test stresses and strains on parts. Such software is integral to students gaining familiarity with the engineering design process as well as learning to collect, analyze, and interpret data.
Use of computers, printers, and scanners is integral to the college’s programs. Since software programs are important to meeting the program outcomes, it is necessary to have the computers and printers and scanners that support the use of the software. Students use computers every day to communicate with other students and their professors or to complete assignments.
The other Colleges have varied ways of applying the technology to their specific programs. The College of Arts and Sciences offers the following departmental examples:
English – Computer classrooms used in professional writing classes simulate the professional writing environment found in many career paths and opportunities. Many writing instructors use technology as a means to facilitate peer review of student writing and group collaboration on writing projects.
Art – Graphic Design and PhotoMedia concentrations rely heavily on hardware and software specific to the discipline. Professionals in these fields demand a thorough knowledge of design and imaging technologies. Access to these technologies is provided throughout the curriculum.
Chemistry – Various types of technology are used in all chemistry laboratories, ranging from handheld probes to monitor temperature, pressure, or pH, to specialized instruments costing over $100,000. Computers are used for data analysis, graphing, and molecular modeling. These and other hardware and software are introduced and utilized in the chemistry curriculum and are required for accreditation by the American Chemical Society.
Mathematics – Course Compass software (MyMathLab) is used in several courses to supplement and support classroom instruction. A computer lab in the EMCS building is devoted primarily to calculus courses, and a large lab is being built in Maclellan Gym for use with introductory courses.
Music – The music technology lab has workstations and recording equipment for use by students and faculty. All music students make use of the ear training and music notation software, and instrumental music education students learn marching band drill design with the Pyware program.
UTeach-In the new UTeaChattanooga program being launched in fall 2010, students will utilize laptops and educational software such as Inspiration to create lesson plans. They will become proficient in the use of TI83+ graphing calculators with smartview software and motion detectors, the Fathom modeling program, web authoring software, video editing software, statistical software, and classroom management software.
The College of Business (COB) has two teaching computer labs and another computer lab dedicated to student use. Every COB classroom is equipped with hardware and software that enables faculty to incorporate Excel, the internet, and other tools into the learning process. In addition, the college has implemented eleven (11) new Bloomberg terminals into the curriculum.
The College of Health, Education, and Professional Studies sees student learning enhanced by technology in the following ways:
School of Nursing – Students practice in the “Safe Hospital” simulation lab using high fidelity simulated patient scenarios to develop competent clinical skills. Undergraduate nursing students are provided with simulated electronic clinical documentation experiences using technology.
Interior Design – Students are expected to produce competent presentation drawings using various media and to produce competent contract documents, including coordinated drawings, schedules, and specifications. Interior Design has three computer labs, including one equipped with the latest computer technology in the design field.
HHP – Exercise physiology employs a clinical lab with integrated touch screens and software to promote competent clinical skills.
Student Access and Training
UTC grants students access to technology and provides students with opportunities to train in the use of the available technology. All faculty, students, and staff are given a UTCID, which is a unique identifier on UTC systems. Students are given their UTCID upon admittance to the university. The UTCID gives students access to the Mocsnet portal where they can access their student information (grades, class registration, financial aid), email, and file or web space storage.
UTC provides 1Gbps of network speed for the major buildings on campus. All buildings are wired with Cat 5/5e cabling. In total, we have 18,404 wired network ports. Additionally, the campus has 254 wireless access points on the main campus and in a few dorm common areas. The wireless network is operating at 802.11 a/b/g/n frequencies. UTC has 200Mb worth of commodity Internet bandwidth and 1Gb of Internet 2.
The Student Technology Center (STC) is the largest lab on campus. It is available for student use 87 hours a week, including Sunday hours. The lab contains 96 computers for student use and offers Macs, PCs, and Smart Screen Technology. Additionally, the lab houses a classroom equipped for teacher, staff, and student use. This classroom is available by reservation. The STC has workstations, including several ADA stations that accommodate both group and individual work.
The Student Technology Center offers technology training in the main computer lab on campus. These classes cover such topics as website building and using Microsoft Powerpoint 2007. The University also works in conjunction with the UT system to let all faculty, staff, and students take classes in the IT Academy.
The UTC Lupton Library has over 60 computers that can be used by faculty, students, and staff and wireless laptops that can be checked out for use in the library. Additionally, the library has digital cameras, flip video camera, Kindles, and audio recorders available for check out. The library has online databases and eBooks that are available for faculty, students, and staff. These online resources can be accessed both on and off campus. The library offers workshops for students on many technological topics, including use of the online databases.
The Help Desk is the first line of technological help for faculty, students, and staff. The Help Desk takes requests for help via the phone, email, and an online self-service portal. This service provides answers to common technical problems. The Help Desk offers purchase consultations on technology for faculty, students, and staff. The Help Desk works closely with the IT computer lab to assist students with updating and providing simple repairs to connect their computers to the network.
The University complies with all federal guidelines for students with disabilities. The Office of Student Disabilities (OSD) Adaptive Technology computer lab guarantees that all students have access to appropriate technology. A list of the Adaptive Technology resources offered through OSD is available on the OSD website. The OSD staff is available to assist students with this technology as needed.
- Information Technology Division web page, Mission Statement
- Continuing Education/Distance Learning
- Lupton Library Distance Learning Services
- Student Technology Center web page
- Student Technology Center Classes
- IT Academy
- ITD Help Desk
- Office for Students with Disabilities