Phase-In Support of Smart Classrooms by OTS during Academic Year 2012-2013
After many years of successfully supporting classroom audiovisual services, Cook Library's Media Resource Services has passed the torch to the Office of Technology Services. This is a common approach in higher education as audiovisual systems become more reliant on network and computer resources. We thank the Media Resource Services team for their diligence and hard work.
For the fall semester, we will phase in the support with the buildings listed below. OTS Staff are now fielding initial problem reports. Additional buildings will be added as the academic year progresses and newly hired staff members assume additional responsibilities.
Buildings Served (Smart Classrooms and Computer-Equipped Labs Only)
• Lecture Hall
• Liberal Arts Building
• Linthicum Hall
• Psychology Building (Rooms 205, 206, 208, 407 and 507 only)
• Stephens Hall
• Towson City Center
Much of the day-to-day support in other buildings on campus is done by college and department technology staff or lab managers. For buildings not listed above, continue to use those resources. Always check the instructions at the podium for a telephone number to call for help; it may be OTS, or it may be the college or department. Regardless, each room should have a conspicuous set of instructions or a placard that specifies who to contact or how to get help.
Telephone Support Specifics
Telephone support provides first-line-of-defense "rescue" assistance for faculty and other presenters problems come up in a smart classroom or computer-equipped teaching lab. This service can be used to get help or report a problem with the classroom podium computer, audiovisual system, or student computers; for help logging in or with your NetID; for help with common software or websites used for in-class instruction (including Blackboard); or for problems with network connectivity.
On-Site Classroom Service Visits
If a problem can't be solved by phone, a visit to the classroom may be needed. We will coordinate this as soon as possible, subject to staff availability. On-site visits are a cooperative effort between college, department, and OTS staff. While priority attention will be given to classroom outages and problems, please keep in mind we do not have a rapid-deployment guarantee at TU. Faculty should always have a “Plan B” if the technology doesn’t work.
New Classroom and Computer Lab Technology Service Coordinators for Fall 2012
Starting with the Fall 2012 semester, we will have three new positions on staff that will work exclusively with classrooms and computer labs. These Classroom and Computer Lab Technology Service Coordinators will provide direct campus-wide support to classrooms and computer labs. Each person will also partner with two colleges and provide additional assistance to college and departmental technology staff. They will provide training to faculty on classroom technology use along with other services in support of teaching with technology.
Important Restriction: the new positions are funded through Student Technology Fees so ethically their work is restricted to student-facing technology support. They are not permitted to provide general faculty or staff support, office support visits, or other OTS-style services. Support for those types of issues begin with a call to the Faculty/Staff Help Center or through an online request; if a field visit to an office is needed, regular OTS staff will be assigned instead.
Hours of Operation
Support for the buildings listed above will be available Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and on Fridays from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. when classes are in session. Until the service is expanded, for all other buildings, please follow department or college procedures.
Eligible Callers and Call Topics
Telephone calls may be made by any faculty member, student, staff member or guest speaker who is using one of the smart classrooms or computer-equipped teaching labs who is trying to use the instructional technology in the room. Support is provided only for computers, smart boards, clickers, and the audiovisual presentation system. While there may be other technology equipment and devices in the room (electron microscopes, gas spectrometers, other scientific equipment, etc.) these are supported directly by the academic department or college.
People with problems with computers in their office, remote access from home, general "how to" help for non-classroom software, and all other matters should contact the OTS Faculty/Staff Help Center at 410-704-5151, 2 + 2 + 2 on the voice menu. When closed, listen to the after-hours recording when calling the Faculty/Staff Help Center or check the website for more information, including after-hours help for a variety of common problems.
Quality Assurance Surveys
People who call will receive a questionnaire by email and will be asked to evaluate the quality of service provided. Additional evaluation may be requested. Please provide as much information as you can about your experience. We are interested in hearing from you whether you were happy with the service or not.