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WCET Recognizes Institutions for Innovative Uses of Ed Tech

The WICHE Cooperative for Educational Technologies (WCET), a provider of strategies and services that promote effective use of educational technology in higher education, has announced the recipients of the 2012 WCET Outstanding Work (WOW) award, which is for colleges, universities, and other organizations that develop exceptionally creative, technology-based solutions to address significant problems or needs in higher education.

The recipients of the 2012 WOW award are:

  • The Monterey Institute of Technology and Education for NROC Developmental Math, a program to help financially disadvantaged students pass developmental math courses before starting college math courses;
  • New Jersey Research and Education Network (NJEDge.Net) for NJVID, a digital video repository service for academic and research videos for higher education; and
  • Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) for the TBR Mobile App Education and Workforce Resource Center, a repository of peer-reviewed mobile apps for education.

The NROC Developmental Math program from the Monterey Institute of Technology and Education is a free and open program designed to help students who need to upgrade their math skills before proceeding to college-level math courses. Entrants to the program complete a diagnostic pre-assessment to identify gaps in their knowledge and create a personalized learning path. The program is multi-modal, uses rich digital media, and is modular, so teachers can adapt the resources to suit students or changes in curriculum. The program is already in use in colleges, adult schools, high schools, and middle schools across the country and has been used in online, blended, and traditional classrooms.

NJVID from NJEDge.Net is a digital video repository service that streams and preserves academic and research videos for higher education. NJEDge.Net enables instructors to upload videos to share with their students, create annotated video clips from full-length videos, and create playlists of videos and clips. They can also make the videos available through learning management systems, Web sites, and blogs. In addition to user-uploaded content, NJVID also hosts over 5,000 cataloged commercial educational videos from vendors such as Films Media Group, PBS, Ambrose, Intelecom, and others. Educational institutions that hold licenses for content from those providers can add the videos to their school's video collection for streaming.

TBR Mobile App Education and Workforce Resource Center is repository of mobile apps for education, which are tagged according to subject area, educational level, and device type. The center aims to be a major repository of educational and career training mobile apps for preK-12, higher education, and adult workforce training. The center uses a peer review rubric developed by MERLOT to evaluate the apps for compliance with ADA standards, device neutrality, cost, privacy, and student engagement and outcomes. The center currently contains over 60,000 apps across 125 disciplines, with more apps being added daily.

"The significance of the WOW Award is more than just some cool, new technology tools," said James Bowey, professor at Winona State University and chair of the WOW Awards Committee, in a prepared statement. "At the heart of the award and this year's three honored projects is that each addresses a real and important need that is shared widely across higher education. It's the innovative, often collaborative, way in which these projects were carried forward that merits the award, as well as the fact that each serves as a model for others to replicate."

The WOW award will be presented at the WCET Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX in November.

Further information about the WOW award and this year's recipients is available on the WCET site.

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