posted on Jan. 17: Learning Technologies Resource Centre officially opens


An old-fashioned ribbon cutting ceremony officially opened McMaster's latest high-tech facility, the Learning Technologies Resource Centre (LTRC).

The leading-edge centre is committed to assisting faculty in using technology effectively to improve teaching on campus.

The LTRC was established with the help of a $1-million gift from RBC Royal Bank, a partnership praised by President Peter George as a “demonstration of support for the spirit of innovation.”

As well as a resource development and training lab, the LTRC features a high-tech classroom with a 'smart podium' that includes a built-in computer connected to a video-data projector and screen, VCR, sound system and electronic whiteboard–putting the various technologies at instructors' fingertips.

This smart classroom', located in the basement of the H.G. Thode
Library of Science and Engineering, will be used to train faculty and graduate students in the use of multimedia resources and reflects both the current needs of instructors and the changing nature of educational technology.

Bart Strong, executive director of administration and classroom services at the LTRC, describes the centre's mandate as “researching and developing new learning technologies and assisting faculty in integrating new technology into their course delivery.”

Dick Day, professor of psychology and academic director of the Centre for Leadership in Learningnotes that the LTRC envisioned in early 2000 changed with the recommendations of John Platt, professor of psychology and special adviser for academic Computing.

“In a bit of forward thinking of our own, McMaster saw greater potential in the LTRC and the centre was given the primary responsibility for instructional technology support campus wide.”

The LTRC is holding an open house today (Jan. 17) and tomorrow (Jan.18) to showcase the technolgy and staff that are available to help faculty use high-tech equipment when teaching.

High-Tech Teaching: Laila Bastedo, LTRC course management systems administrator, is framed by the various electronic interfaces available for use (top photo). Muriel McKay (in the black suit) is walking Dick Day through the operation of the newly installed equipment (bottom photo).

Photos by Ron Scheffler