ATI 2020 in Review

ATI 2020 in Review

June 3, 2020

ATI 2020 
Open Education: Access, Agency, Community

The 10th annual Academic Technology Institute (ATI) was held on May 27, 2020. The ATI is typically a multi-day event that brings together faculty from the four USNH institutions (GSC, KSC, PSU, UNH) and CCSNH to develop projects that advance the goals of the USNH Open Education Initiative.  Plans were underway to hold a 3-day in person event at Keene State College, but in March, due to the COVID-19 situation, ATI 2020 became a one-day virtual event for the first time in its history.

The theme of the event was Open Education: Access, Agency, Community. For ATI 2020, the themes were described as follows:

Access: Support students and facilitate greater access to learning in your course by replacing textbook(s) and/or other paid course materials to reduce or eliminate cost barriers.
Agency: Support student agency by redesigning your course to increase student control over policies & practices, grading & assessment, and/or activities & assignments.
Community: Support students joining a community of scholars and contributing to the knowledge commons by creating or contributing to open resources or sharing and discussing their work on the web.

Forty faculty ambassadors were selected to participate in ATI 2020 - 10 from Granite State College, 10 from Plymouth State University, 6 from the University of New Hampshire, 7 from Keene State College, and 7 from the Community College System of New Hampshire. In addition, there were 20 USNH staff members and 3 guests.

The event was kicked off by Dr. Melinda Treadwell from Keene State College who welcomed participants and discussed the recent changes in higher education and encouraged faculty to avoid labeling it as “remote” or “digital” and instead think of it as “the new way of learning.” She praised faculty at all institutions for how they have responded over the past few months and let them know that (they are) “...the ambassadors to deeper learning and deeper thinking.”

The keynote speaker was Audrey Watters, a writer and independent scholar specializing in education technology. Her talk was on “Care and the Cybernetic University” as it relates to a poem by Richard Brautigan, “All Watch Over with Machines of Loving Grace.” She spoke about the precariousness of the higher education system, its inequalities and injustices, and how the global pandemic has exacerbated them. Her message was that we must prepare and plan for the future with humanity, compassion and care. Read more on Audreys speech.

This year, 7 former ATI ambassadors were invited to present on their Open Education projects as they related to one of the ATI themes: Access, Agency, or Community. The former ambassadors began their presentations with a 5-minute “Lightning Talk” on one of the themes. Following the talks, participants were able to choose and join a breakout room to discuss the theme and project in more detail. These sessions allowed faculty to reflect and learn more about different technologies, strategies, and methods discussed in the lightning round presentations. Read more on the ambassador Lightning Round Presentations.

The event concluded with a joint presentation on the New Hampshire Open Education Public Consortium, or NH Open, by Robin DeRosa, Director of the Open Learning & Teaching Collaborative at Plymouth State University, Christin Wixson, Scholarly Communication Librarian at Plymouth State University, Deb Baker, Library Director for the Manchester Community College, and Lia Horton, Librarian at Granite State College.

The NH Open Hub is a custom resource center on OER Commons where New Hampshire educators can create, organize, and share OER materials. This is an exciting new opportunity to impact teaching and learning throughout New Hampshire and to increase access and affordability around post-secondary education in our state. NH OPEN focuses on adopting and developing open textbooks to: drive down the real cost of college; improve learning outcomes, throughput and completion rates, and student engagement; improve higher education’s capacity to prepare graduates for the needs of a changing workforce; and develop 21st-century pedagogical approaches to serve our students and our state.

Read more on ATI 2020.  Join the conversation on Twitter @USNHOpenEd,  #USNHShare.


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