Proposal for "Early Start/Easy Access"

San Francisco State University is uniquely positioned to begin early implementation of the target technology infrastructure for access, training and support described by the ITS Initiative. The projects described below have been identified as appropriate for implementation during the Spring 1997 semester. These projects have the support of the President, the ITT team, the Chair of the Academic Senate, the Chair of the Educational Technology Advisory Committee and the President of the Associated Students. Preliminary planning has already been done for these projects, and project implementation could begin as soon as funds are approved.

The funds requested are for the start-up phase only. Funding for the on-going maintenance and support of these projects is addressed elsewhere in this document.

Expand Student Modem Pool

A significant component of providing "anytime, anywhere" access to computing and networking resources is the ability to access the campus network remotely. At this time, San Francisco State has 160 modems in the campus modem pool. Approximately 100 of these modems are V.34 modems. The remainder are older, slower, and less compliant with current standards. The entire modem pool is generally fully utilized from 8 am until late in the evening, and students are very frustrated by the inadequacy of this resource.

This project would add 150 V.34+ modems to the student modem pool, using current technology which can offer higher speeds than the current modem pool. The addition of these modems will move the campus closer to providing adequate remote access to students. Additional support for on-going costs and the replacement of older modems is addressed elsewhere in this proposal.

Faculty Modem Pool

As electronic communications and information resources become an increasingly important component of the instructional program, faculty are increasingly frustrated by their inability to use these resources remotely because the campus has insufficient modem pool capacity. This project would establish a 72-line, current technology modem pool for the exclusive use of faculty. With an industry-standard subscription rate of 20 users per modem, this facility would adequately support the faculty of this campus.

Curricular Web Server

Through the Deans, the faculty have expressed a need for a Curricular Web Server to support on-line access to syllabi and other course-specific information. Although the campus does have a Web server, it does not have sufficient capacity to support this type of service for the entire campus, nor is there staff to support faculty in the creation, placement and maintenance of these Web pages. While there are many faculty who would like to make curricular material available via the Web, there are far fewer who have the time or the skills to undertake this additional workload themselves.

The project would provide a centrally operated and maintained Curricular Web Server, and full-time staff to manage the server, create Web pages for faculty, and provide general faculty support for the creation and use of Web-based materials in the curriculum.

Faculty Help Line Staff

In the past, the Computing Services’ Help Desk has had a single phone number for students, faculty and staff to call for information and assistance. In September 1996, the Help Line received over 1000 calls per week. At the request of faculty, Computing Services installed a "faculty only" Help Line in November 1996. While this new number reduces faculty frustration by moving them "to the head of the line," no new staff resources were available to support this service. During busy periods, Help Desk counter service and student Help Line service degrades as a result.

This project calls for hiring a full-time computing consultant assigned to staffing the Faculty Help Line and responding to faculty needs for information and support. On-going support for this position is included elsewhere in this proposal.

Collaboratory

The Center for the Enhancement of Teaching (CET) has taken a position of leadership on this campus in training faculty to use technology-based tools to enhance the quality of instruction throughout the university. CET has been successful in this regard beyond anyone’s expectations and has, as a result, out-grown the modest physical space and equipment allocation dedicated to their efforts.

The purpose of this project is to build a facility for training faculty which provides adequate space, power, lighting, network access, workstation hardware and software, projection equipment and "groupware" software to train faculty to use collaboration software tools which have proven to be extremely effective in both corporate and educational environments. The university has identified space for this project.

Electronic Class Lab

There is a significant need on campus for a facility equipped with computers, software and projection equipment which can be scheduled on a regular basis for students classes. Those who manage campus student computing labs are frequently asked if labs can be used for classes. Unfortunately, this precludes the use of the facilities by other students so requests are frequently refused.

This project would create a 25-station electronic class lab, including power, lighting, furniture, workstations, software and projection equipment. The university has committed space for this project.

Training Center

The current Computing Services Training Center was built in summer, 1996, using part of the space vacated when the new 24-Hour Student Computing Lab was built. The Training Center is used for all student, faculty and staff short courses offered by Computing Services. It is also used by the Center for the Enhancement of Teaching, the Library and other campus groups for technology training.

The Training Center has only 20 workstations, which barely fit into the room, and inadequate space for screens, projection devices and other teaching aids. A space has been identified for a larger Training Center. This project would provide power, lighting, furniture, workstations, software to expand the capacity of the Training Center, as well as the equipment, furniture and telecommunications service to make the facility a "state-of-the-art" model of an "electronic classroom." In addition to serving the campus’ training needs as well as possible, this facility will serve as a "hands on" example of classroom technology for campus planners and faculty who wish to incorporate new classroom methodologies.

Training Position

As the ITS Initiative clearly states, campuses have an overwhelming need to train students, faculty and staff in the use of applications software, networked information resources and electronic communications. At San Francisco State, training classes offered by Computing Services, CET, the Library and others are generally fully subscribed. There is, in fact, a tremendous need for training which cannot be satisfied because the instructors who provide this type of training have other responsibilities which occupy most of their time.

Computing Services has one full-time employee whose primary responsibility is to schedule and advertise short courses, prepare short course curricula and materials, maintain the Training Center, and teach classes. This level of support is clearly not adequate. This project proposes to hire a second instructor for the Training Center during the spring semester. On-going support for this position is included elsewhere in this proposal.

24-Hour Computing Lab Expansion

The 24-Hour Student Computing Lab which opened in September, 1996, has been tremendously successful. This lab is particularly in demand because it was designed from the beginning to meet ADA accessibility requirements. In addition to being physically accessible, it offers a variety of adaptive hardware devices and software tools.

There is generally a waiting line for workstations from 8 am until late evening, the lab is at least half-full until about 2 am, and there is rarely a day or hour when the lab is completely unused. This project would address the overwhelming need for more workstations in this facility by adding six more workstations, including ADA-compliant furniture and software licenses.

"Early Start/Easy Access" Proposals

Expand Student Modem Pool $200,000
Faculty Modem Pool $71,500
Curricular Web Server $95,000
Faculty Help Line Staff $50,000
Collaboratory $90,000
Electronic Class Lab $90,000
Training Center $80,000
Training Position $50,000
24-Hr Computing Lab Expansion $30,000
TOTAL $756,500


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