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Final questions & answers

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  • Final questions & answers

    My last group of answers to questions posed on Thursday.
    President and CEO

  • #2
    Dr Shaw,

    Normally the Admin does not to ask questions, but this one is more focused on social media and new world communications. I know this is a soft spot for you.

    1. Communities like C2E. Where do you see the bulletin board medium going in the future?

    Just as like-minded individuals find each other in face-to-face clubs and organizations, we can connect to people via electronic forms, bulletin board postings and discussion groups. Having the opportunity to connect with experts, ask questions and interact with others provides the fundamental framework for building community.

    NAIT understands that interaction among students and the two-way communication between teachers and students contributes to a common sense of belonging.

    Bulletin boards are great ways to enhance learning environments and in some cases are richer than face to face discussions as those participating have time to reflect and post more thoughtful responses. Discussion groups, forums and bulletin boards are excellent ways to build communities of learners.

    2. Social Media. Do you have an opinion on where this type of interaction will go, and more specifically, how it will work in an educational setting?

    There's no doubt social media has and will continue to affect the learning environment. While many focus on the technology when talking about social media, it's really not about the technology at all, but rather communication. For a number of years, our younger generations have not been intimidated by the use of technology because it's part of their daily lives from a very young age. The study "Online Social Networking on Campus" outlined that 99.9% of the post-secondary students surveyed believe that technology’s primary purpose is communication.

    It's human nature to want to be part of a community and to want to engage in conversation, regardless of the medium. Social media now simply presents new tools to engage. It's also ever evolving as people discover its uses and build on them.

    At NAIT, we launched a social media discussion group a few years ago to explore its implications and share best practices, both inside and outside of a learning environment. The reality is that, as an educational institution, we're always learning and we have to maintain a level of curiosity to continue to provide the most enriching learning experience to our students.

    We know that the social media tools that are here today may not be around or may evolve as their users become more sophisticated; history has shown that with the evolution of telephones, radio and television, for example. All have evolved to offer specialized services as the technology improves and its users demand more.

    At NAIT we are committed to student success and as such are committed to learning and growing with social media. To get a taste of some of our initiatives at NAIT, please go to There you'll also find our best practices guidelines for staff and students' involvement in social media.

    3. Gary Lamphier recently wrote a column on the lack of innovation and adoption of new tools in recent memory. In it, he laments how many of today's "innovations" are really 70's era innovations, how many new products have yet to reach prime time in spite of decades of research and development, and how newer technologies like advanced video conferencing and other collaboration tools have not gained acceptance in the business world. I would be very curious to see how you think on this subject, as well as how these newer technologies could improve NAIT's overall reach and program offerings?

    On another note, C2E's Administration is extremely grateful for your participation on this forum.

    NAIT has always been on the leading edge of emerging technologies as they relate to teaching and learning.

    [i]Every year the Gartner Group ( highlights several emerging technologies and provides a timeline of years to mainstream adoption. The acceptance of collaborative tools (Web 2.0) and Video Telepresence are just on this side of the ‘peak of inflated expectation’, with a time for adoption out two to five years. [ii] For business to adopt social media and related technology that facilitates a pull approach to interacting with an established customer base, many companies need to shift and adapt their thinking.

    NAIT understands that, although technology supports and enhances the learning process, it needs to remain transparent and unobtrusive to our students. Opportunities to create new, interactive and positive learning environments are available to our instructors through the use of video conferencing, web conferencing tools and virtual worlds with many currently being used to engage our face-to-face students as well as our online learners.

    Rena M. Palloff, Keith Pratt, “Building Learning Communities in Cyberspace”, San Fransico, Jossey-BassPublishers, 1999.
    Gartner Highlights 27 Technologies in the 2008 Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, July, 2008, Website, accessed, June 19, 2009
    President and CEO


    • #3
      Final Note:

      Thank you Edmonton!

      Dr. Sam
      President and CEO


      • #4
        thanks a lot dr. shaw!
        you missed when time and life shook hands and said goodbye.