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We invite you to register now  (FREE) and share your expertise with other faculty and staff members at our Annual  Academic Technology Learning Conference.  Discover new ways to use technology in your classes and engage students.   (http://tlcconference2014.sched.org/ )

Prize Drawings:

1st keynote  Kindle FIRE HD eBook from Blackboard                              Guest Speaker HD webcam by Cisco

2nd keynote Executive Office Chair by Computer Comforts                Gift cards each session
Wednesday, April 2 • 3:10pm - 4:00pm
Digital Communication

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Colleges today are supposed to give graduates the “immediate skills” they need to launch their professional careers, and they now need more digital communication skills and need to understand why they are needed (Young, 2009, p.9). From the employer’s perspective, graduates with skills such as effective digital communication contributes to aligning stakeholders–employees, customers, communities, vendors, etc., therefore, allowing the business to operate at peak performance. Given the changing workplace in terms of factors influencing business communications within organizations, e.g. social networking technologies, social media and workforce diversity, there is a need for academicians and industry representatives to collaborate in preparing business majors for professional careers. Supporting the aforementioned in collaboration with a variety of organizations, course applications for business communication were designed that integrate social networking technology. The intent of these applications is to help students learn professional expectations of digital communication by providing opportunities to practice “skills” applicable for use in the workplace.

Although most students practice digital communication via social networking sites for personal social interactions, they often cannot adapt and or transfer skills required in academic or professional contexts. For instance, most students use writing styles and language during these social exchanges that may not be suitable in business settings. Subsequently, students must rethink and learn the most effective, best practices from industry, to use these tools.

One practice adapted from industry to simulate internal digital communication is the use of discussion boards. Discussion boards are used by organizations for internal communications, advertising products, conducting customer service surveys and other practices. By adapting discussion boards for use in academic settings, students can develop digital communication skills and practice writing styles and language suited for the workplace in a familiar environment. Mindful of said, I use a variety of mini lessons to create topical interest that build on previous knowledge while extending critical thinking skills for broader understanding of expected professional performance. This gives students an opportunity to analyze the situation and define the purpose carefully before writing/posting a message to the discussion board.  This presentation will share findings from discussion board applications used to align and enhance delivery of course content and engage students in the learning process.

Speakers
CN

Chynette Nealy

Associate Professor, College of Business, University of Houston-Downtown
Chynette Nealy is an associate professor of business administration at the University of Houston Downtown. In her work, she is directly concerned with teaching and researching skills that can be applied to bridging the gap between theory and practice.


Wednesday April 2, 2014 3:10pm - 4:00pm
Buffalo Bayou Room

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