Is there a Doctor in the House?

How did I end up here and what have I signed myself up for?!?!

Posted on: July 14, 2009

When I think back to how I have ended up here it’s been a winding journey that began when I was in junior high.  I still remember vividly the first computer lab was I was ever in- a room full of Commodore 64s.  It was the fall of 1984.  My grade 7 homeroom teacher had spent the summer training to be the ‘Computer Specialist’ at our school so we were the first students to pilot the new Computer program.  Mr. Cheverie was enthusiastic and that enthusiasm was quite infectious.  He certainly introduced me to computer technology in a very non-threatening way.  I  feel that this first introduction has had a huge impact on my current perceptions and attitudes towards educational technology.  That and the fact that by the time I began high school my parents had purchased a home computer for my brothers and I to share.  It was a Tandy my dad had the local Radio Shack store bring in.  Anybody remember those?  Being in a pilot class with many ‘hiccups’ and later being the oldest child in a family with a new computer, I quickly gained the confidence to figure out on my own what I wanted the computer to do for me.  This confidence has evolved into an ease with educational technology.

I was fortunate to be working towards a BEd at Acadia University when they implemented the Acadia Advantage program in the mid 90’s.  This was a pivotal moment in my life as I was able to see the ‘advantages’ for me as a learner but also begin to think about the impact it could have on the teacher I was becoming and my ability to better meet the needs of all learners that would be in my classroom.  Once out in the real world of teaching in techno-barren schools, I got caught up in the day-to-day minutia of teaching but eventually was drawn back to technology.  I knew I needed to learn to better use the technology I did have access to.  I completed a MEd in Curriculum Studies with a focus in Learning & Technology through Acadia University’s on-line program.  As I was working towards this degree, teaching students with special needs and mothering at the same time, I kept thinking about how attending classes on campus on a regular basis would have been an insurmountable barrier for me.  This has led me to a keen interest in how educational technology can remove or reduce barriers to learning and to support people in reaching their full potential.  To explore this further I attended Harvard’s summer institute on Universal Design for Learning.  This experience solidified for me that I needed to continue my formal learning regarding educational technology so I began hunting for a program that would fit my needs.

I was so excited when I found out about U of C’s on-line EdD program and that it had an Educational Technology strand, even more excited when I found out I had been accepted into the program.  While I remain excited, I am filled with a nervous energy as the question “What have I signed up for?” swirls in my head.

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1 Response to "How did I end up here and what have I signed myself up for?!?!"

Thanks for posting this story about your beginnings with educational technology, and the motivation that has lead you to doctoral study.

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