EDUC 370 - Instructional Technology: Syllabus



John Hollenbeck, Ph.D.

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The syllabus is available in Adobe Acrobat format.


Course Overview

EDUC 370 will explore the use of a variety of computer-based technologies to create and support learning experiences. This course will challenge you to re-consider how to best use computers and the Internet for teaching, learning and human resource development. EDUC 370 will involve applied work that requires your consistent and active participation.

This content of this course is drawn from several areas - visual communication, instructional design, educational psychology, human-computer interaction, and instructional media development, and we will be reading and researching in these different areas throughout the semester.  This field is constantly developing, and this course is but the beginning of your lifelong study of technology and its ability to augment human communication.

Course Modules

There are two main goals in this course; to increase mastery of specific computer-based media and to apply them to your future practice in education and human resource development. To that end, I propose that we explore the following topics:

  1. Mastering Office – We all use MS Word and PowerPoint, but usually at a surface level. These applications offer tremendous expressive powers that can both increase communication and personal productivity. Our first two days will consist of an intermediate course in Word and PowerPoint with the goal of harnessing their tool sets. I would also like to develop guidelines for using PowerPoint effectively.
  2. Concept Mapping – Visual thinking has become increasingly important, and a new class of software has come about that combines outlining and graphical representation. We will learn to use Inspiration to make graphical representations of ideas. This will aid in planning media projects throughout the semester.
  3. Digital Photography and Graphics – This section of the semester will center on photo and graphic editing. We will concentrate on taking good pictures and turning them into instructional media using a variety of techniques in either Adobe Photoshop Elements or any graphics program you have access to.
  4. Digital Movie Making – The biggest change over the past two years on computers has been the accessibility of video editing tools on the computer. The class will explore filming and editing using programs such as iMovie (Mac) and MovieMaker (PC). Possible products include web video and DVD’s.
  5. The Web – In the past classes like this taught HTML and Web Design. Web 2.0 is a movement that is providing a number of “appliances” that allow users to post media without web authoring skills. Also, blogging has become an easier way to create and maintain a web site. The class can explore these, plus techniques for organizing and accessing information on the Internet.
  6. Papers and Reviews – There will be two article reviews and one final reflection paper to complete in the class. The article reviews will involve your locating an article in your area of interest, getting it approved by the instructor, then reading and completing a review. This is to keep you current to the ever changing practice of instructional media.

Your Responsibilities

  1. Plan to devote at least 25 hours per week for class work. This will include reading, planning and creating media and working through software tutorials. You may choose which 25 hours you want to spend.
  2. There is no textbook for this class, but that does not mean there will be no reading! Articles and tutorials will be assigned in the agenda area of our Blackboard course environment. It will be your responsibility to read and understand all of this material.
  3. Regular participation is mandatory. Any absence of two weekdays in a row will have an effect on your final grade. Please contact me ahead of time if you have an unavoidable reason for missing classes.
  4. Hardware: This online class requires you provide your own technology. If you are in Harrisonburg, you have access to computers, editing equipment and digital video cameras in the Educational Technology and Media Center (ETMC) located in Memorial Hall at JMU. If you are far away, I will work with the technology you have, but you must find a way to access:
    • •A computer with Internet connection for entire course
    • •A digital camera with ability to download pictures to your computer
    • •A digital video camera with ability to download movies to your computer
  5. Software: You should not have to buy any software for this class. I will work with anything you have available on your computer, or will recommend free alternatives for most class work. The only software that may not be free is video editing, but most Macs have access to free iMovie, and PCs have MovieMaker included with Windows. The rest of the software will have Web-based and/or free alternatives. Note: we will not be using Dreamweaver with the Web authoring module.
  6. For the video section, you will be required to provide your own media. If using the JMU equipement for the video section, you will be required to provide your own miniDV format tapes.
  7. File sizes for photography and digital video get quite large. You will need at least 20 GB of hard drive space if working on your own computer. If working at JMU, you should have a package of at least 25 blank CD-R’s and, highly recommended, some DVD-R’s as well. The most cost-effective way to buy blank media is in bulk either at a local warehouse store or on the Internet.
  8. All work must be submitted in class by the posted due date. Late work will not be accepted unless 1) there is a documented medical emergency for you are members of your immediate family or 2) you have negotiated with me well in advance of the due date to submit the project at a later date. Late projects that do not meet either of the above conditions will not be accepted.

Learning Activities

A variety of instructional methods will be modeled throughout this course including such strategies as

  1. Small and large group discussions (both in class and online)
  2. Guided practice
  3. Demonstrations
  4. Cooperative learning
  5. Presentations

Course Requirements

Investment 20%

Learning requires a commitment of your time and energy. In this class it is evaluated weekly in the following ways:


Regular logins and active participation are important for successfully mastering the course objectives.  Logging in to Blackboard and contributing to discussions is a critical part of this course and is viewed as a professional obligation. You are expected to be in online at least 4 out of seven days per week.

Not meeting this minimum without excuse will result in lowering of the course grade as five points will be deducted from the final average for each unexcused absence (e.g., a student whose end of course average is a 97% would be awarded 92% when the minimum is not met once).  Please notify me by phone or e-mail if you have to be absent, then when you return, please check with me to determine whether the absence is recorded as “excused” or not.  There's lots of work to be accomplished and it won't get finished if you aren't in class.  Anything less than your full participation just invites trouble later on.


You must post at least 4 substantive messages (originals or responses) per week per discussion forum. As part of our learning community, we need your voice. There will be discussion forums for each module. These will be areas to discuss any question, give tips and generally facilitate your learning. Please be respectful of others’ levels of experience and knowledge about the technology and software we will be using throughout the semester.  Generally speaking, this course attracts a wide variety of students, each with different skill sets, from many different programs.  Consequently, timing, pace, and time on task will be adjusted to accommodate the range of learners each semester.


Over the course of the semester your consistent work in and out of class will result in a noticeable improvement of you facility with computer media. As we all start with different skills, so we will end our 4 weeks together in different places. But overall there should be significant growth as a result of your course work.

Two Article Reviews 5% Each

Each student will review 2 articles related to instructional design, instructional media development and/or selection, learning theory, or other aspects of instructional technology and/or technology integration.

The review should summarize the content of the article and relate what the article means to you as a professional in your chosen field.  Be sure to include both a copy of the article that you review and a complete bibliographic citation. Reviews must be word-processed, spell checked, and proofread for clarity of thought, grammar, syntax, etc. and uploaded through Assignments in Blackboard. I do not want hard copies handed in during class.  A grading rubric is posted in Blackboard. Please familiarize yourself with the grading criteria BEFORE completing the assignment.

Effective writing is a critical professional skill for instructors.  Thus, a satisfactory level of proficiency in written work is expected.  The quality of your writing will be one consideration for assignments completed outside of class.

Projects 40%

These are extensions to hands-on, in-class activities and include:

  1. •Office documents
  2. •Concept mapping
  3. •Digital images
  4. •Web authoring
  5. •Digital video

Requirements for each project will be further specified in rubrics distributed in Blackboard.

Technology Learning Reflection Paper 5%

The purpose of this assignment is to encourage you to consider and document how you personally learn software applications. I would like you synthesize this information and relate it to what you know about learning theory (including learning styles) and the use of technology in teaching and learning.

Final Project Presentation 10%

The final project will be a synthesis of everything you have studied and created during the semester. This will be your opportunity to show the class what you have created in the way of technology-based instruction. The presentations will occur during the last two class periods. Each person will have 20 minutes to present.

Tests and the Final Exam 25%

Examinations will be given at the end of units and as a final. They will be both objective knowledge and applied in format.


Microsoft Office Assignments

10 %

Concept Map (Inspiration)

5 %

Instructional Graphics (Photoshop or Other Image Editor)

10 %

Instructional Video (iMovie or MovieMaker)

10 %

Web Work

10 %

Article reviews (2)

10 %

Technology Learning Reflection Paper (1)

5 %

Test #1

7.5 %

Test #2

7.5 %

Final examination

10 %

Final Project Presentation

10 %


  • Attends class regularly
  • Submits assignments on time
  • Participates knowledgeably and regularly in class discussions
  • Assumes responsibility for own learning
  • Exhibits professional disposition

5 %


Note:  the weights shown above are only approximate and may vary slightly based on the number of projects assigned during the semester.  Adjustments to the weights will be made and communicated as necessary.

Grading Scale

Grades will be based on tests, projects, assignments, class involvement and participation.  A 9-point grading scale will be used that includes pluses and minuses as follows:

94 – 100    A

91 – 94    A-

88 – 91    B+

85 – 88    B

82 – 85    B-

79 – 82    C+

76 – 79    C

73 – 76    C-

70 – 73    D+

67 – 70    D

64 – 67    D-

< 64    F  

Policies and Procedures

The Honor Code

(from student handbook 2004-2005, Students shall observe complete honesty in all academic matters. Violations of the Honor Code include, but are not limited to, taking or attempting to take any of the following actions:

  1. Using unauthorized materials or receiving unauthorized assistance during an examination or in connection with any work done for academic credit. Unauthorized materials may include, but are not limited to, notes, textbooks, previous examinations, exhibits, experiments, papers or other supplementary items.
  2. Giving false or misleading information regarding an academic matter.
  3. Copying information from another student during an examination.
  4. Rendering unauthorized assistance to another student by knowingly permitting him or her to see or copy all or a portion of an examination or any work to be submitted for academic credit.
  5. Obtaining prior knowledge of examination materials (including by using copies of previously given examinations obtained from files maintained by various groups and organizations) in an unauthorized manner.
  6. Selling or giving to another student unauthorized copies of any portion of an examination.
  7. Using a commercially prepared paper or research project or submitting for academic credit any work completed by someone else.
  8. Falsifying or attempting to falsify class attendance records for oneself, or for someone else, or having another falsify attendance records on your behalf.
  9. Falsifying material relating to course registration or grades, either for oneself or for someone else.
  10. Falsifying reasons why a student did not attend a required class or take a scheduled examination.
  11. Taking an examination in the place of another student.
  12. Making unauthorized changes in any reported grade or on an official academic report form.
  13. Falsifying scientific or other data submitted for academic credit.
  14. Collaborating in an unauthorized manner with one or more other students on an examination or any work submitted for academic credit.
  15. Committing the act of plagiarism - the deliberate copying, writing or presenting as one's own the information, ideas or phrasing of another person without proper acknowledgement of the true source.
  16. Using computing facilities or library resources in an academically dishonest manner.
  17. Falsifying evidence, or intimidating or influencing someone in connection with an honor violation investigation, hearing or appeal.

**Note: The instructor reserves the right to amend the syllabus at any time during the semester.

Policy on Adding Courses

Students are responsible for registering for classes and verifying their class schedules on E–campus ( The deadline for adding a Spring Semester class without instructor and academic unit head signatures is Tuesday, January 16, 2007. Instructor and academic unit head signatures are required to add a Spring Semester 2007 class between Wednesday, January 17, 2007 and Thursday, January 25, 2007. No student will be allowed to register for a Spring Semester class after Thursday, January 25, 2007. No exceptions will be made to these deadlines. General Course Schedule This scheduled is intended to


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