Setting the PACE: A Transdisciplinary Framework for Managing and Evaluating Educational Technology


Since coming to Boise State almost two years ago, I have been exposed to a different set of organizational and cultural approaches to technology management that have had a very positive impact on my practice and how I consider the holistic impact that new initiatives might have on a variety of institutional resources.

In my current capacity as Interim Director of Learning Technology Solutions (a new department charged helping to bridge the cultures of IT and Academics) I have partnered with an individual who comes from a corporate project and service management background (Daniel Gold). It has been interesting for both of us (Daniel and I) to learn more about each other’s respective disciplines (Project Management and Education) as we are finding common theoretical foundations in psychology, sociology and philosophy that have informed the methodologies and practices of these disciplines.

Together, we are developing what we are calling the PACE Framework. It is a method of evaluation that groups educational technology initiatives into four main categories:

Pilot, Assess, Compare, and Enhance

For each of these, there will be a scoring rubric that helps us prioritize resources and scope the complexity of the initiative. This rubric will include alignment with campus strategies, pedagogical needs, and estimates of cost and resource needs. If the appropriate initiative is a Pilot of new or emerging technologies, we will employ a template that integrates PMI methodologies with Instructional Design methodologies. In general our approaches to educational technology management all reflect a kind of chimera hybrid that blends PMBOK techniques and Instructional Design models such as ADDIE and Backwards Design.

Each initiative will have checkpoints that allow the project participants to reflect on the process and progress on a kind of meta-level and determine how (or whether) to proceed.

We are excited at how these instruments and methodologies will be utilized here at Boise State University to help us establish a cohesive digital ecosystem that supports and promotes effective and innovative teaching and learning.

For samples of specific rubrics, templates, or our best practices in terms of governance, communication, etc., please feel free to contact me:

(208) 426-1851

Daniel and I would be happy to discuss or present these topics.


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