UH keeps up with new technology
With technology constantly growing, UH has kept up by offering students online classes, providing interactive Web sites and being a part of social networks. These advancements provide an increase in the educational experience as well as more learning tools.
The UH Writing Center offers a Live Meebo Chat, where students can receive help with things such as grammar, citations and revisions.
“Some come looking for grammatical help just because they’re looking for some sort of quick fix, but for that we usually refer them (to) other places,” staff assistant Ben Lummis said. “It’s mainly just to clarify services we have here now that people aren’t sure about. We just started these general consultations and people are curious about how to sign up, how to get here, where to go and what it’s going to entail.”
The Live Meebo Chat has been active for about four years now and will continue to help students as long as they keep using the chat.
“Basically we just try to send them places to find other sources and do research for them and point them in the right direction on how to get going,” Lummis said. “We’re trying to meet with students at their point in the writing process and help them move forward.”
UH utilizes distance learning sites such as Blackboard Vista and V-Net, and while these may be common to students here, that is not always the case for others.
Kinesiology sophomore Catherine Paquet is an international transfer student from Canada who is new to the technological system.
“We didn’t use as much technology at my school in Montreal,” Paquet said. “It was very old fashion in its methods.”
Paquet takes advantage of the technology at UH, specifically the public computers available for student use and the class material that can be accessed and discussed online.
“Sometimes it is hard to catch everything in class,” Paquet said. “So using the things online helps me be more on top of what needs to be done, because I quickly and easily have access to it.”
For the kinesiology department, technology has provided advancements with their experiments. They recently received a machine that allows them to calculate body mass index when experimenting on mice.
Associate professor Brian McFarlin performed a case study on his kinesiology class to see if technology improved student’s performance.
“It’s a case report of my efforts to create a better learning environment,” McFarlin said.
UH students, such as junior Lauren Sponberg, notice the increase in technology not only for the learning experience, but also with the precautions taken towards cheating.
“For my college algebra class, we have to go into a special testing center to take exams on the computer,” Sponberg said. “It’s really high-tech. We sign in with our fingerprints just to make sure we’re not cheating. I never imagined that taking a test would ever be like that.”
The expansion of technology varies all over the country, which is how students are able to experience various methods.
UH alumna Marcelle Gakam discovered conference classes when talking with her cousin.
“She once had a conference class with a similar class in another university in another state,” Gakam said. “Apparently, with the use of video projectors, cameras and microphones, they were able not only to hear but see the students in their classroom and vice versa. She told me this was one of her most interesting lectures.”
Communication student Rawan Zaidan said that her entire psychology class was uploaded on the video sharing Web site, YouTube.
“I liked it on YouTube because it would upload quickly, and I could pause it and go back and watch the lectures again and again if I needed to,” Zaidan said.
There are other advancements in technology that are used by students that are not provided through the University, such as Notehall, which allows students to buy and sell study materials, Facebook and iPod’s.
“My iPod is amazing,” kinesiology student Nadia Agha said. “Between being able to quickly look up a random question and checking e-mail, it makes doing things for classes so much easier.”