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On May 3, dozens of McGill professors will be off to the fair as Instructional and Multimedia Services (IMS, formally known as ICC), prepares to host its second annual Teaching Technology Fair, which will take place at the Faculty Club from 10 am until 2 pm.
The fair ground in question is a room in which professors will have an opportunity for hands-on interaction with laptops and other devices, as they explore new ways to integrate technology into their teaching.
"The idea is that professors are exposed to different teaching practices involving technology. It's an opportunity to learn what works in different classes," says Cindy Ives, who is an associate director at IMS.
While last year's fair was dedicated to WebCT, this year's event will focus on a number of different technological innovations that professors have incorporated into their teaching. Over 20 faculty members at McGill have volunteered to staff booths in order to share their experiences and techniques with their colleagues. Also on display will be the various services offered by IMS and other information technology units to the teaching community. And though WebCT will not have first billing, it will remain a prime attraction as representatives from IMS will be giving demonstrations of the new version of the popular software program.
The spirit of the fair will be relaxed, fun and casual as participants engage one another in activities that favour personal discussions over large-scale presentations.
"It's a community-building activity," according to Adam Finkelstein, a manager in Teaching Technology Services at the IMS.
McGill will also welcome Dr. Diana Laurillard of the UK's Open University. Laurillard is an eminent figure in educational technology, and has spent over 25 years working in the development and employment of multimedia materials. She will be speaking at 7 pm on May 2 at the Frank Dawson Adams Auditorium. For more information, see www.mcgill.ca/ims/teachingtechnology.