UB Tech session to focus on engaging students in an age of distraction

Brett Warner and Tim VanNorman. hosts of The Higher EdTech Podcast.

Colleges and Universities often pay lip service to technology integration, but don’t always show the support that instructors need to thrive in the modern environment. Meanwhile, students are coming to classes with higher and higher expectations of engagement.

Instructional Technologist Tim VanNorman and ESL Professor Brent Warner, both from Irvine Valley College, will be at UB Tech 2020 in Las Vegas to share some of the tools and strategies they’ve found to meet those expectations.

The highly interactive session, titled “Engaging Students in an Age of Distraction,” will introduce new ways to develop critical thinking with easily accessible tools such as GSuite for Education, Flipgrid, Zoom, Kahoot and Gimkit.

The tools and techniques have been vetted by Warner and VanNorman, who are known in the field for their innovation and desire to help teachers better lead their classes. The pair also host The Higher EdTech Podcast, a weekly show that focuses specifically on the underserved community of college and university professors who desire to better understand technology in the classroom but are left with limited resources to pursue professional development.

“Co-hosting the podcast has rounded out the materials I was already producing and allowed a broader reach to people who prefer to hear information rather than read it,’ says VanNorman.

“The show gives an opportunity to be better connected to teachers and campus, and to have a stronger grasp on understanding how to support teachers in their tech integration evolution,” says Warner. “Colleagues have gone out of their way to let us know that the show helps them have a practical, functional understanding of how to use many of the tools on campus.”

UBTech attendees can expect to learn how to develop students’ critical thinking skills through collaborative tools like GSuite for Education, and help develop customized learning paths for individual students through low stakes formative assessment tools.

Tim Goral is senior editor of UB.

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