A two-year project, supported by funding from the Annenberg/CPB Project, Epiphany is sponsored by Gallaudet University, George Mason University, and the Alliance for Computers and Writing, a national organization dedicated to helping teachers with writing instruction in the digital age.
"By July of 1997, we expect to have at least ten universities linked with the Epiphany Project," said Trent Batson, director of Academic Technologies at Gallaudet University and Epiphany Project director. "Teachers are experiencing a switch from print to digital culture in the writing classroom, and they need to learn how to adapt to enormous changes. Often, in the past, teachers found themselves the sole electronic word whiz in their departments, and most of these 'early adopters' lacked a broad base of support. Now, with more and more teachers wanting to use technology, it's becoming critical to provide adequate training and support in order for them to take the risks of trying new teaching practices using information technologies."
An example of English teachers banding together at a department level to develop a support team is at Virginia Commonwealth Universtiy where an informal group meets weekly to share information and do hands-on workshopping in order to learn new skills. Faculty from the University of Richmond recently joined the VCU meetings since some teachers in the English departments at both VCU and UR are members of the Epiphany testbed team. These teachers have participated in initial research, video production, World Wide Web development, and other efforts aimed at the creation of training packages for teachers.
The first Epiphany training package will be tested at a workshop on January 12 and 13 in Richmond, Virginia, where teachers will learn about email, hypertext, networked classrooms, synchronous communication in virtual spaces (MOOs) and the World Wide Web, among other things. At this workshop, the Epiphany guidebook will make its debut, the result of a collaborative effort among many members of the Alliance for Computers and Writing. The next training program will be offered in Richmond in June.
For additional information, contact Epiphany Project Co-Director Judy Williamson or visit the Epiphany Project homepage.
Facts About Epiphany/Important Dates
Kairos 1.1 (Spring 1996): News