Caroline’s Journey: Week 2

Technology: To Boldly Go

Cont. Alt. Delete.

Cont. Alt. Delete.

If things go badly wrong, you can always cont, alt, delete.

I live on a small island off the west coast of Ireland. There are two of us enrolled to complete Community Leadership and the first evening we sit together in my office gazing at the computer screen, willing the Blackboard Collaborator programme to work.

Follow steps one to five. We have meticulously followed all the steps.

Check the sound and speaker system. Yes. We have done that.

Turn on video camera. The button has been pressed.

Nothing.

‘What do we do?’

I don’t know, why are you asking me? I’m not a leader. (I am still having difficulties with this concept after the induction session).

‘Hello? Caroline, Sinead…are you there?’

Yes…we are here…just about.

We giggle nervously like school children when it is our turn to raise our virtual hand. There is an egging on, you go first, no you, no you, when it comes to speaking into the mic, addressing the rest of the virtual learners.

Many firsts that evening, lots of trepidation regarding the technology, the right way and the wrong way of doing things, hesitation to press buttons, reserve to put your hand up, to interrupt the tutor, to disagree with an opinion expressed.

Then the meat and bones of the thing, exercises in groups, defining leadership, questioning our preconceptions, pinning down our own thoughts.

Before we know it there are chat boxes being opened, virtual hands being raised, pinging messages back and forth. Where did the two hours go? Suddenly it is time to say good bye, to sign out from our first session.

And not once did we need to cont, alt, delete.

Caroline Healy

December 9, 2016