This portfolio represents the work completed for the class, EDUC E-102, Introduction to Educational Technologies,in the fall of 2006 at the Harvard Extension School. I have prepared this portfolio to show-case the range of assignments and projects that I completed for the class.

I am South African, temporarily living and working in the U.S. I have more than 20 years of work experience in South Africa (S.A.). Prior to coming to the U.S., I owned my own consulting practice where my clientele ranged across the public and private sectors in S.A., and included local newspapers, health, justice and education ministries, provincial and national governments. I am a candidate in the Masters of Liberal Arts, in Educational Technologies and this class forms part of the core curriculum for the program. My thesis work will focus on evaluating a technology-based HIV/AIDS interventions in higher education institutions in S.A. I learned so much in this class about how to integrate technology into workshop curriculum to enhance the learning experience of students.

My assignments for this class included:

Top Ten List

For this assignment we were required to research a topic using the internet and to select the top ten sites that represented the best information, examples and also demonstrated best practices of how technology had been used and integrated into this topic. My top 10 list investigates examples where technology has been used to respond to epidemics. It demonstrates examples of innovation and collaboration using technology to respond to rising epidemics. This list represents the best examples in my view of how technology is being used to effectively and dynamically pool resources from across the globe to solve an epidemic. My Top list focused on HIV/AIDS but also included responses to the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Avian flu.

  Lesson Plan

div style="text-align:justify"> In this assignment we were required to write a 1-3 page lesson plan demonstrating how we would integrate technology into the education process in this lesson plan. It needed to include examples of the actual mapping process used by the teacher and the learners using the Inspiration software. My lesson plan was developed as part of a series of health education workshops for parents/adult learners who have children in local schools in South Africa. Technology is an important medium for discussing HIV/AIDS, as many parents are not able to easily verbalize their HIV status or articulate the help that they require. Using Inspiration both as a brainstorming tool and also for parents to work in groups is highly effective and meets the needs of this audience.

  Pamphlet

This pamphlet was created by using the top ten list of Web sites and marketing it in a three-fold pamphlet. Each student in class facilitated a PowerPoint presentation and the pamphlet was used as a handout. The PowerPoint presentation was an opportunity to briefly describe and explain your topic and the research conducted on it. This was done in the context of having read Edward Tufte’s critique on using PowerPoint’s.

  Personal Collage

Using the Adobe Photoshop software was both a challenge and fun! The collage incorporated pictures taken with a digital camera and from the internet. My collage portrays my home and work in South Africa and our life here in the U.S. depicting scenes from Boston in the snow, aspects of what brought us here, and where I work and study now. It includes a map of Africa reflecting faces in Africa where our biggest challenge to combat HIV/AIDS exists.

  Virtual Discussions

We were required to participate in online discussions every other week. This forum was used for us to introduce ourselves to the class and to begin to learn and engage with each other through online discussions. Every other week, the class was required to respond to a question posted on the virtual discussion page and we would need to write about our position to the question and then also respond to at least two other submissions. I have included some excerpts from my participation in the virtual classes.

  Graduate Essay

My graduate essay describes my action plan for future work in South Africa. Much of this work will be project based and will be grounded in partnerships and research that will be conducted between the Harvard Graduate School of Education and South Africa. I am considering using my role in Alumni Relations to connect with South African alumni and to begin to engage them in some of the evolving projects and future work in South Africa.

  Final Project

Schools in South Africa are directly impacted by the challenges facing communities. One of the most pressing challenges is the growing HIV/AIDS epidemic, which has exterminated family units, and young learners have often been plunged into caring for dying parents at the expense of completing their elementary school years. In addition, school leaders are increasingly confronted with growing numbers of educators on their staff who are HIV positive. Technology is an important tool to use for HIV/AIDS education as communities still struggle with the issues of disclosure and with the stigma attached to their HIV status. My final project is a workshop series that addresses HIV/AIDS education in the context of school communities.