Meeting Notes - Oct 16, 2015



  • Assignment: highlight indcates assignment
  • Recommendations: italics


  • David Hinger, Marlo Steed, Ken Heidebrecht, Kevin Orr, Len Sproule
  • regrets: , Jane O’dea, Janice Rahn, Dawn McBride, Craig Lowen, Scott Powell


Chair (Marlo):

  • Terms of Reference - deferred till next meeting

Kevin (Tech support):

  • Updated to Yosemite
  • New speaker system for 341 and 373
  • Zoom Web conference system used a lot
  • Email update - IT problems


  • Workshops during planning days seemed to have been successful (some individuals coming forward to explore tools)

Items for Action

Software Donation

David Hinger indicated that two software companies were willing to donate software. It was decided that the Faculty is willing to accept such a donation but but the terms need to be determined.

Elaine's video camera project

Elaine would like to experiment with having her students use video cameras to capture interviews and be able to share those with supervisors. Here are my notes on Elaine’s video camera project requirements:

  • ideally store 60 hours of video at a time (6hrs/day for 10 days)
  • needs to be portable
  • review on laptop
  • ease of use
  • battery life - long enough to support the storage requirements
  • good audio
  • unobtrusive

We brainstormed possible solutions:

  • Len suggested - Zoom portable camera
  • David suggest - an iPad

We haven't received an official proposal for this but thought it would be useful to begin talking about it.


There is a program called SimSchool which provides preservice teachers an opportunity to engage with a simulated classroom environment. Richelle had read an article on it and expressed an interest, so passed it along.

Janice (via email): I think the SimSchool is worth trying. It would be great for teaching seminar students to act out different classroom management strategies while the rest of their class critiqued the simulated responses. It would add a much-needed practical component to teaching seminar, and perhaps atypical since you can program the simulation. I just watched this Youtube link that you sent. I'd have to research to see if there are more strategies other than teacher-directed teaching from the podium. I wouldn't want to preference this model of classroom management, without simulating group work and project-based learning, for example.

Len: indicated a concern with realism

Marlo: concerned with learning curve

Consensus seemed to be skepticism. We suggest that if Richelle is interested that she check out the 30 day trial version and report back to the committee - Marlo will pass this suggestion along to her.

MakerSpace/ScaleUp Space/Innovation Room

Notes from previous meeting (last spring):

We discused the possibilities of renovating TH 341 to a Scale Up room. We had Bernie Wirzba and David Hinger from the Teaching Centre, as well as Carol Knibbs Scott, Kevin, Janice, Pam Adams, and myself. We brainstormed technical possibilities and mapped out physical arrangement. We determined that we can probably fit 6 stations around that room which would accommodate 7 students per cluster (n=42 students). We talked about a 60 inch TV monitor, Smart Kapp board and regular white board for each cluster region. The big expenses would be the electrical work; lighting and video/audio sharing (so that groups or an instructor can share their screens). Back in the Fall, I had emailed Faculty and asked for their input. Here is a quick summary of the feedback:
1. need flexible space - chairs and tables that could easily be rearranged
2. need lots of whiteboard space
3. it would be useful to have a front to the room (for presentation type of meetings/classes)
4. most people seemed to like the concept of a Scale Up room

The purpose of the renovation would be to pilot a flexible version of a Scale Up room as a way of facilitating group work in our classes. This facility would put us in a better position to evaluate the effectiveness of such a space in education and could be a model for how schools might incorporate such spaces into their facilities.

I forgot to mention this in our meeting but I think it would be neat to have a glassed in area that housed a couple of 3D printers. This probably would not be part of TH 341 per se. Perhaps we can use part of one of the storage offices on that floor for this purpose. However, it would be visible from the hallway so that it would showcase works-in-progress as people walked by. I think with the new curriculum for Career & Technology Foundations (grad 5-9) and with the CTS curriculum, this kind of initiate would have traction and appeal to our students.


In today's meeing we discussed the amount of money that Craig had dedicated to this purpose and decided it would probably not be sufficient to replicate the Scale-Up room created by the Learning Center. At our last UPDC meeting Craig indicated that we have $60,000 to work with.

We then turned our attention to a smaller room that might act as hub for innovation. That would accommodate such technologies as:

  • VR headsets (Google
  • 3D printers
  • app development
  • makerspace
  • Coding - Scratch (GoogleCS First), arduino, Raspberry pie,
  • Robotics

David mentioned the Agility project - an initiative for creating Makers Spaces. Not sure where this would be located in the University.

One of Marlo's brainstorming ideas was to repurpose offices around the current classrooms as technology innovations rooms but those could act as breakout rooms for regular classes as well - flexible & multipurpose.

Marlo suggested that we focus on conceptual innovations and then have the technology support the idea rather than vice versa.

The discussion quickly turned to focus on an idea of a cross-disciplinary approach that might involve multiple departments in offering course/s that would invovle students and instructors from different departments - idea of team teaching. The notion would be that students from different disciplines would come together to create a New Media product.

David suggested offering a summer institute with an upfront online component then face to face experience for teachers in the field.
Marlo liked the idea of a multidisciplinary course that would have New Media project/products as an outcome.

We mentioned names that might be useful to bring together for such an initiative:

  • Dan O'Donnell - English
  • Bruce MacKay - Liberal Ed
  • Shelley Wizmath - Math
  • Leanne Elias - New Media
  • Dana Colly - New media

Ken mentioned the idea of a using an unconference to bring students together to identify interests.

In terms of next steps, we decided to continue thinking about this and do more brainstorming before moving forward in any concrete way.