Megan Homeyer, Instructional Designer, Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Service
The mission of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension is to connect relevant and life-changing educational content with people who need it. As population size increases and the need for science-based knowledge becomes more important, we have to take a hard look at how we connect our programs and content to people across the state with different types of technology.
To help us look at what this change might entail, Dr. Holly Whitaker, Coordinator of Educational Media and Online Curriculum Development with Texas A&M AgriLife, is hosting a webinar series during August. This series will walk Extension personnel through the steps of selecting and implementing technology-delivered programs.
Why does this matter?
We have seen a trend of more and more people going to the internet for answers to their problems. Why go to an in-person presentation when someone can find a solution with a click of the button? According to Perrin and Jiang (2018), 26% of American adults report that they go online “almost constantly” and that overall, 77% go online on a daily basis. Additionally, 11% of adults go online several times a week or less often.
It can be a struggle to try and reach everyone in your community and field. As people continue moving towards an internet-integrated life, it’s important that we meet them where they go to find information. There are a lot of people who need what Extension has to offer and technology advancements allow us to be in more than one place at a time with customized, just-in-time content for everyone.
Knowing your audience and community is crucial to creating life-changing, relevant programs that they will want to participate in. This webinar series will help you understand how to provide those programs in a different format that has the ability to reach more people without having to see them in-person.
Delivering programs with technology offers Extension the advantage of providing content to the people of Texas whenever they need it and in a format that easily accessible and trustworthy. Programs can be utilized at any time by the people who need them most.
Ok, but how do we do that?
This fundamental shift from delivering in-person presentations and programs to adapting a technology-driven delivery strategy can be overwhelming. With all of the options available, from websites, online courses, social media, email lists, etc., sometimes it’s hard to figure out where to even begin.
That’s where this webinar series comes in. Dr. Whitaker breaks down the process into bite-size pieces that walk you through step-by-step. Depending on what you are trying to accomplish with your programs and who your audience is, there are different strategies to try out. Working through the different sessions will remove much of the guesswork and leave you with a clear action plan.
By attending these webinar sessions, you’ll learn:
When does this start?
The first webinar session begins on August 2, 2018 at noon. There will be a live session every Thursday during August from noon – 1 p.m. There will also be a sneak peek session the week leading up to the webinar. The sneak peek will give you a chance to see how the webinar will be set up and what content will be provided.
If you’re interested in ways to improve the reach of your programs and to help more people, click here for more information.
If you have any questions, please email Dr. Whitaker at email@example.com.
Perrin, A & Jiang, J. (2018). About a quarter of U.S. adults say they are ‘almost constantly’ online. Retrieved from: http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/03/14/about-a-quarter-of-americans-report-going-online-almost-constantly/