Pre-conference Day of Campus Technology 08 at Boston’s Westin Hotel was excellent. The first session I attended was “Collaboration Technologies: A Way to Flatten Hierarchy and Unleash Innovation”. This session discussed ways that traditional university hierarchies impede pedagogical innovation. Often going unnoticed are collaborative efforts around campus in what the presenters called “academic silos”. This session discussed strategies on how to tap into these silos, thereby creating a sharing, innovative spirit. The strategies discussed were aimed at leveraging the current digital tools that are collaborative in nature. A blog from today’s session can be found here.

The afternoon was spent touring MIT. This was an exciting opportunity at a very prestigious university. Besides touring the campus, our group enjoyed some lecture time with some of MIT’s distinguished faculty. The highlight of the different lectures was by Dr. Peter Dourmashkin, Senior Lecturer Department of Physics. Dr. Dourmashkin gave an overview of the TEAL Project. TEAL stands for Technology-Enhanced Active Learning. This project began in the 1990s and deals with teaching in an interactive, participative environment.