Project Management of Educational Technology Projects

Project Management of Educational Technology Projects

Shahron Williams van Rooij (George Mason University, USA), Joi L. Moore (University of Missouri, USA) and Angela D. Benson (The University of Alabama, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4237-9.ch001
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Technology plays an important role in the delivery of education and training in school and non-school settings. Educational technology projects range from providing electronic whiteboards in K-12 classrooms to implementing campus-wide learning management systems on college campuses to deploying mobile devices for training delivery in non-profit organizations to developing performance improvement interventions for business organizations. These projects are carried out using a variety of tools, methodologies, and process, both formal and informal. In general, these projects can be described using the project management framework. This chapter introduces the project management framework and draws conclusions about its use in education and training from the 18 cases of educational technology projects presented in this book. The cases represent a range of project management approaches, from the generic and foundational to the highly complex and sophisticated.
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Project Management

Broadly speaking, project management is the planning, structuring, execution and tracking of all resources and activities to achieve specific project goals. A project is a temporary endeavor that has a definite beginning and end and is undertaken to create a unique product, service or result (Project Management Institute, 2013). A project ends when its goals have been achieved, when the project’s goals cannot be achieved or when there is no longer a need for the product/service/result the project intended to achieve. Although the project is temporary, its outcomes are not. Projects are undertaken to produce a lasting outcome. Examples of projects include new software applications, new or revamped educational programs or curricula, new or improved work processes to enhance organizational efficiency, the construction of a new building, or a research project to create a specific body of knowledge or product that will benefit society. People will often utilize a project as a means of achieving an organization’s strategic plan. Projects are typically authorized because of market demand (such as authorizing a new brand of learning management system in response to dissatisfaction with existing brands); organizational need (such as a training company authorizing a project to create a new course to increase its revenue); customer request (such as a sales division asking the training and development unit to create a workshop for new sales reps); technology advances (such as cloudy computing as a means of hosting teaching and learning applications); legal requirements (such as mandatory compliance training at the federal, state, or professional certification level).

Managing a project typically includes responsibilities such as identifying project requirements; stakeholder needs and expectations when planning and executing the project; establishing and maintaining active, effective, and collaborative communications among stakeholders, and; balancing competing project constraints such as scope, quality, schedule, budget, resources, and risks.

Project management has its roots in several industries, particularly construction, engineering and defense but emerged as a separate discipline in its own right in the 1950s. Specific tools, techniques, technologies, processes and procedures began to emerge to facilitate project scheduling, cost estimation and management, as well as human resource planning. Early practitioners of project management formed professional associations focused on creating a standard set of project management processes. Today the largest project management associations are the European-based International Project Management Association (IPMA), a federation of 50 national associations with the U.K. and Germany representing the largest proportion of members and the U.S.-based Project Management Institute (PMI), representing more than 700,000 project management professionals worldwide. IPMA focuses on the technical, contextual, and behavioral competencies of a project manager (International Project Management Association, 2013) and PMI focuses on project management practices and processes (Project Management Institute, 2013). Project management practices have been adopted by a variety of industries in which technology – including educational technology - plays an important role in organizational success (Clark, 2008; Williams van Rooij, 2011).

Complete Chapter List

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Editorial Advisory Board
Table of Contents
Angela D. Benson, Joi L. Moore, Shahron Williams van Rooij
Chapter 1
Shahron Williams van Rooij, Joi L. Moore, Angela D. Benson
Technology plays an important role in the delivery of education and training in school and non-school settings. Educational technology projects... Sample PDF
Project Management of Educational Technology Projects
Chapter 2
Margaret L. Rice, Deborah Camp, Karen Darroch, Ashley FitzGerald
A P-12 school district implemented a pilot program providing e-readers to 45 students in a 4th and a 5th grade class. The school district... Sample PDF
Planning and Implementation of a Small-Scale 1-to-1 Pilot Program for Using E-Readers in Elementary School Classrooms
Chapter 3
Jenny Lamont
Mindset Network is a non-profit organization that develops educational resources in several sectors, including the schooling sector. In 2011... Sample PDF
The Production of Learning Resources for the Study of Information Technology with Limited Project Management Capacity
Chapter 4
Angela D. Benson, Sharon Y. Tettegah
Public and private K-12 schools are turning to course management systems to provide enhanced classroom and online learning opportunities for... Sample PDF
Implementing a Course Management System in a Religious School Cooperative
Chapter 5
Margaret L. Rice, Connie Bain
A southeastern school district technology committee was tasked with designing and implementing a project to develop 21st century classrooms... Sample PDF
Planning and Implementation of a 21st Century Classroom Project
Chapter 6
Tawnya Means, Eric Olson, Joey Spooner
Educational technology projects undertaken by higher education institutions range in complexity, scope, and impact. The Edison project created a... Sample PDF
Discovering Ways That Don’t Work on the Road to Success: Strengths and Weaknesses Revealed by an Active Learning Studio Classroom Project
Chapter 7
Patricia McGee, Michael Anderson
Meeting the demands of students who expect convenience, affordability, and a quality education has required that institutions of higher learning... Sample PDF
Project Realities: Shifting Course Delivery Method
Chapter 8
Renee Drabier, Daniel E. Burgard
The University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) completed a project to transform traditional, print-centric library space into an open... Sample PDF
From Stacks to Collaborative Learning Commons: Transforming Traditional Library Space with a Planned Infusion of Digital Technology
Chapter 9
Andrew A. Tawfik, Carol Reiseck, Richard Richter
The case study describes the project management methods used in the implementation of a faculty development course at a small liberal arts... Sample PDF
Project Management Methods for the Implementation of an Online Faculty Development Course
Chapter 10
Autumm Caines
Projects that focus on changing existing technology, rather than introducing new technology, have unique challenges and opportunities. These... Sample PDF
Piloting the Change: Migrating a Learning Management System while Discovering a Project Management Protocol
Chapter 11
Herbert Thomas, Jessica Hollis
This case involves the implementation of an automated capture solution, aimed at replacing a manual lecture capture service at the University of... Sample PDF
Project Management, Complexity and Creativity
Chapter 12
Lesley G. Boyd, Jill W. Fresen
This case study is located in the Department for Education Innovation (EI), a teaching and learning support unit at the University of Pretoria in... Sample PDF
An Integrated Management Approach in a Higher Education Technology Support Unit
Chapter 13
Elizabeth A. Fisher
The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s (UAB) growth initiative to increase access and enrollment in part through online education prompted its... Sample PDF
An Online Initiative Goes Viral
Chapter 14
Andrew A. Tawfik, Jeffery L. Belden, Joi L. Moore
This case describes the agile management methods for an iPhone software development project. The overall objective was to design a smartphone... Sample PDF
Agile Management of a Mobile Application Development Project for Surgeon Workflows
Chapter 15
Jackie Dobrovolny, Marianne Horner, Lee Ann Kane, Margaret Miller, Travis Chillemi
Representatives from eight different organizations collaborated to develop a self-paced elearning course to teach preceptor skills to staff nurses... Sample PDF
Volunteer Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) on an eLearning Development Project: The Effect on Timelines, Quality, and Project Management
Chapter 16
Nancy El-Farargy
Supervisory training for clinical psychologists is often a pre-requisite for practitioners taking on their first graduate trainee and for seasoned... Sample PDF
Refresher Training in Clinical Psychology Supervision: A Blended Learning Approach
Chapter 17
Stephen R. Rodriguez, Dennis A. Thorp
This chapter presents a case study of the project planning and management processes—originally employed at a university instructional development... Sample PDF
eLearning for Industry: A Case Study of the Project Management Process
Chapter 18
Camille Dickson-Deane, W. Andrew Deane
Advances in technology and the increased competitiveness of the world’s economy have changed the landscape for developing countries. One of the... Sample PDF
Implementing Infrastructure-Related Education Technology Solutions at the Government Primary and Secondary School Level
Chapter 19
Sonya Bland-Williams
Much like any organization’s training program, military training schools train in technical skills, values, and common tasks. In this chapter’s... Sample PDF
Implementing Simulators to Facilitate Learning for Initial Entry Soldiers
About the Contributors