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Acknowledgments and Credits

Acknowledgments and Credits

One day in 1998, Dennis Foth, the Director of Applied Arts in my faculty, dropped by my office. His unit was in the middle of redeveloping their writing program and he wondered if they should include a course about writing for media other than text. Writing for New Media, a 12-hour evening course, was born.

Over the next two years, I taught this evening course on four consecutive Wednesdays. It soon became apparent that there were many more interested in the content than the program could accommodate. At the same time, I was getting frustrated with the face-to-face didactic approach. Dennis and I agreed that I would re-purpose the course for a blended delivery; incorporating the original materials I had developed. Over 300 hundred hours later, I uploaded a modular course of ten topics ranging from the role of the New Media Writer to the Team Process in new media design, which had two face-to-face meetings and ran over 20 weeks. Over that time participants developed a portfolio by completing only the topics they needed, completing activities in a workbook, and contributing to an asynchronous threaded discussion.

Those resources, which I now think of as learning objects, have again been re-purposed and extended for this book. So, thank you, Dennis, Susan, and your staff in Applied Arts, for getting me started on my writing career!

Teaching an online course over 20 weeks, at a home computer in the kitchen, requires tremendous patience and understanding from your family. My extraordinary husband, Rick Roder, and my excellent daughter, Courtney Bonar, supported me through several offerings of Writing for New Media and pitched in to find web site exemplars, references, glossary terms and new research for this book. Without Rick my uneasy relationship with technology would have long ago defeated me. I love you both and promise to dote on you once this book is out of my hands.

I have wonderful and brilliant colleagues who have contributed to the process, helping me with research, identifying resources, tolerating my single-mindedness, and authoring sections, chapters, and activities in the Handbook. Special “thank-yous” to Winghan Chen, who flew in from Vancouver Island to spend a month editing and filling in missing pieces; Ellen Whybrow, a wonderful instructional designer in our unit who authored Chapter 4 on her holiday; Margaret Haughey, one of my favorite colleagues, for her steady advice and insights; the excellent Colin Geissler who took away from his own precious time to work with my husband to find exemplars and create examples; and Catherine Gramlich who has inspired me for four years. Catherine pulled the final version of this text together, which was a mighty creative, editorial and organizational task. And thank you to all my colleagues in Academic Technologies for Learning from whom I continue to learn.

Thanks also to our exceptional administrative assistant Bev “who is the boss of me” Adam who protects me from everyone, but especially from myself. Bev, I would simply have to end my academic career if you left.

Many of the examples in this book were offered by my very generous colleagues with whom we have worked and have supported in their efforts to design e-Learning environments. Dr. Sue Gibson, from the Faculty of Education; Dr. John Boeglin from Faculté Ste Jean; Dr. Rod Wood from the Faculty of Law, all from the University of Alberta; and Dr. Jose Pereira from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary. Each of these individuals allowed me to use sections from their courses and stories from the development process, but more importantly I learned invaluable lessons about personal/professional growth and relationships from them all.

At the same time I was developing this content I was the co-lead of the Learning Design Working Group for IMS Global Learning Consortium. I want to express my appreciation to Industry Canada - Cliff Groen, Yuri Daschko and Mary daCosta - for supporting my participation; and to all the members of our working group for opening my eyes to the whole world of learning objects, and standards and specifications. Through these activities I have met wonderful colleagues and have found a whole new research program!

Finally, I come from a family of strong, smart, funny women who individually and collectively work critically, uncompromisingly, and with care, humor and integrity in the world. This group includes my late grandmother Margaret Gutteridge, a headmistress from Sussex who kept her family together in a new country; my much-missed mother Pat Campbell, a professional woman and highly-respected teacher in a time when women were supposed to stay home; my sister Sue Campbell, a fierce philosopher and her partner Jan Sutherland, a new lawyer with an active social conscience; my sister Lori Campbell, who has spent over a decade working with aboriginal communities in northern Canada and who is now helping launch the University of Alberta’s new Aboriginal Teacher Education Program; my beloved daughter Courtney Bonar who is now following her own educational goals; and my new, adored niece Jesse Aluki Campbell, the “happy soul”.

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