by Arash Ghadishah
Berkeley's instructional technology resources are expanding the parameters of the lecture hall, allowing the faculty to overcome barriers posed by space, time, and even overwhelming class size.
The university offers resources and support staff to help faculty bring technology into the classroom. The best source for finding out what technology is available, and how bring it to students, is the Internet.
All campus units responsible for instructional technology maintain web sites with listings of resources.
The Instructional Technology Program (ITP) is an on-campus unit whose purpose is to "support and encourage campus faculty to use technology to improve instruction." The program's web site is an ideal starting point to explore ways to bring technology into teaching.
ITP's web page, http://www.itp.berkeley.edu/, offers "Guidelines for Creating and Editing a Course Home Page," one of the more popular technological innovations on campus.
The use of course home pages can save time and resources, while providing students comprehensive class information and illustrated educational materials.
Making use of student email accounts is another way to easily distribute information and educational materials. By registering students on a list-serve, instructors can, in one step, send course announcements to an unlimited number of students.
Also on the ITP web site is a link to the World Lecture Hall, which contains links to pages created by faculty from around the world.
ITP offers several workshops each year to familiarize faculty with software that can be used in instruction. Information on workshops is also available through ITP's web site.
The Teaching Library's Guide to World Wide Web Resources, http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/TeachingLib/HTML, offers background on using the Internet for instruction, and critiques some different strategies for on-line communication with students.
The Office of Media Services, http://www-oms.berkeley.edu, acts as a clearinghouse for instructional technologies and provides consultation and support for their use. Among the resources available are satellite down links to record and present educational broadcasts and assistance with classroom ethernet connectivity.
It also maintains a distance education and teleconferencing facility in 127 Dwinelle Hall. The facility allows for live teleconferencing to and from other UC and non-UC sites.
The office supports instructors in production of graphical and multimedia-based material through an Instructional Presentation Laboratory.
The Media Resource Center, http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/MRC/, is the Berkeley library's primary collection of audio and visual materials. It offers an array of videocassettes and video discs, slides, computer software, and full text social science and humanities CD-ROMs.
Finally, the CyberSemester Resources web page, http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~cybersem/resources, offers links to the units listed here, as well as several other valuable resources.