Rethinking The Academy:

The TicToc Project


James Sosnoski, the head of e-works, conceived the TicToc Project as a way of exploring and perhaps defusing the tensions and anxieties created by on-line learning situations; he describes the TicToc Project in this way:

[It] is named to suggest that the problems inherent in the rapid expansion of online teaching are a potential time bomb. Even before the hype about the information highway many teachers used the Internet as a site for their courses; and now, numerous colleagues are joining them. In some cases, the Internet is construed as a complement to work done in the traditional classroom but in others the traditional classroom is replaced by a site in cyberspace. Indeed, replacing the traditional classroom with a virtual space is a growing tendency among educators. In many instances, however, the conversion of the actual classroom into a virtual one precipitates a myriad of problems that are yet to be cogently addressed. The TicToc project attempts to address the problems of replacing actual classrooms with virtual classrooms without flinching at the radical departures from traditional pedagogical practices such a shift in educational environments requires.
Our plan is to identify the most common online teaching scenarios and discuss the problems associated with them through a structured online discussion leading up to a symposium on the emerging issues. The idea is to have leading experts in online pedagogy and technology discuss these issues with key members of UIC's English department beginning in the Fall of 1996. In the Spring semester of 1997, the E-Works group will replicate the online teaching scenarios here at UIC either as actual courses or as demos so that the UIC English faculty can get a hands on feel for how such teaching scenarios work. Then, on Friday the 16th and Saturday the 17th of May, 1997 we will host a symposium at UIC bringing all of the discussants face to face. An edited version of the proceedings of the TicToc discussion will be published in a special issue of the journal Works and Days and made available both in print and as a hypertext.

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Last Modified: August 2, 1996

Copyright 1996 by Keith Dorwick