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John Stevenson's picture

Online training: possible joint meeting with Education and GITCO and volunteer opportunity

At Midwinter, we discussed the prospects for offering fee-based online training using no-fee software. GODORT's Education Committee and GITCO met jointly at Midwinter and Linda Spiro (Education) is interested in pursuing online training with Publications and GITCO.  She asks if we would like to meet jointly with the other two committees at Annual to work out more details of what could be the new source of GODORT revenue (if handled correctly). 

I see the Publications Committee role as ensuring that the overall quality is good before the GODORT name goes on it and shared Jim Church's observation that people will pay good money to learn skills that are hard to learn rather than those which are easy. 

The draft schedule for Annual Conference isn't out yet, so I can't tell you what slots are available for meeting at this point.  Does our committee want to meet jointly with these committees to facilitate discussion of online courses? I believe the model is that we'd share a room, meeting partly with the others and partly on our own.

Whether we meet jointly or not, online courses look to be a revenue source that we should explore.  Is anyone interested in becoming our committee's lead representative in this exploration?

John Stevenson's picture

Regarding having a joint meeting of the three committees, Linda says

The joint committee program idea for the first hour would be to take the recommendations of the workforce on online training and have 3 members of that group present findings in three areas (one member for each area): content, technology, and publication. We would then break into small groups to discuss the findings and get people's reactions - what they think would work and what might not work.  We'd get back together briefly to hear each group's report.  We'd then add those suggestions to the workgroup's report and present the amended report to Steering. The targeted audience would be GODORT members and anyone else  who is interested in offering any type of government-related online training.

I think in the future the objectives of the three committees probably will not overlap and allow for a joint program.  Figuring out the parameters of online training, though, is a job for all three committees and the only opportunity I can forsee for a joint meeting. Education members really profited from discussing GITCO's report at Midwinter and I think having many people's viewpoints on the workgroup report would be beneficial.

I'll look forward to hearing whether you think this would work for your committees.  It's one way to be sure the workgroup comes up with a report and moves the online training project forward.

John A. Stevenson
Associate Librarian, Student Multimedia Design Center
University of Delaware Library
302 831-8671

John Hernandez's picture

Great minds are truly thinking alike! The folks on the Development Committee were thinking along these same lines. We discussed the possibility of having Publications, Membership and Development all meet in the same room. We thought we could use the first hour or some part thereof for a joint conversation and then break off again into our respective groups. I believe Cass Hatnett is looking into room availablity for such an arrangement.

In general, I think the understanding is that offering online education under the GODORT brand is an excellent way to generate revenue and something we definitely want to pursue further. Perhaps some sort of conference call might help us all land on the same page here? We can hash out an agenda and which committeess should be present. We may also want to invite the chair of GITCO and possibly someone from the Program Committee? I also suggested to Steve Hayes and Geoff Swindells that we might want to invite someone from the ALA office of development, and they thought that idea had merit.

Since this sort of effort has much larger implications for the entire organization, is the multi-committee meeting idea something we should put to Steering first?


John J. Hernandez
Web & Mobile Services Librarian
Northwestern University Library
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston, IL 60208-2300



John Stevenson's picture

We lack a draft schedule for annual, so I don't know what the room asssignments will be.  Publications could meet in the same room with other committees to encourage cross-pollination of ideas.

Linda Spiro (Education), Shari Laster (GITCO) and I have been pondering a possible joint meeting.  Because we don't have a proposal for course content, I don't think that we have much to discuss at this point but Linda would like a Publications Committee member to volunteer to serve on an Education Committee workgroup exploring possibile online courses.

Is anyone interested in this topic?

John A. Stevenson
Associate Librarian, Student Multimedia Design Center
University of Delaware Library
302 831-8671

Chellammal Vaidyanathan's picture

If no one has volunteered, I would love to work with the Education Committee on exploring possible online courses.


John Stevenson's picture

I'm sure that Lindo Spiro will be happy to have Chellammal Vaidyanathan as the Publications Committee representative to Education for the workgroup.

Thank you Chella!

John A. Stevenson
Associate Librarian, Student Multimedia Design Center
University of Delaware Library
302 831-8671

James Church's picture

Sorry guys for missing this thread.  I just started a new thread on this, like an idiot. I see now this discussion is already well underway.  Good job!


Jim Church
Librarian for Economics & International Government Information
University of California, Berkeley
438 Doe Library
Berkeley, CA 94720 USA
Email: jchurch@library.berkeley.edu
Tel: (510) 768-7611