Why Atomic Learning? Moving Instructional Technology Forward - Guest Blog Post

We value our customers and appreciate the knowledge they provide and feedback they share, so we decided to ask for their stories to share in our new blog series "Voice of the Educator."

Guest blog post by Sarah Kentner, Educational Technologist at Loyola University, Chicago.

Our world is consumed by technology. Take a stroll around campus and it becomes apparent that everyone has some type of device. Yet, each person has different
needs that must be met. For students, this includes basic skills that instructors expect of them, but were never taught before coming to college. Instructors need direction on newly released technology, so not to disrupt their current needs. Staff members are looking for help with new tools that could make a difference in how they perform their daily tasks.

As a campus Instruction Technology team, it is hard to meet all of these needs with on demand support and training. Atomic Learning provides our team with a way to meet all of our needs on campus through on‐demand training. Each person has the ability to log in and work on skills specific to their current needs. While one person is working on pivot tables in excel, another can explore creating a resume. One individual may be learning to write html code and yet someone else can be learning about Windows 10 and what to expect with this upgrade.

Not only does Atomic Learning allow our team to meet all of the different needs across campus, but it allows flexibility for everyone to use the system at their convenience. Students can watch videos on their phone while riding the train; instructors can be at home during the weekend; and, staff can view after hours on their couch. It is truly providing anywhere, just-in-time technology support.

Additionally, instructors have the ability to provide specific links to skills that students must master before completing the course. These links allow for there to be more focus on the content and less on the how‐to. Our students are going to be using technology in any position they land in after graduation; we have to prepare them for the workplace. Atomic Learning allows our students to learn new skills without losing valuable time within the classroom.

Atomic Learning has not only helped our department meet all of our campus community with current needs; but it has started to pave a road that will help move us forward. These technology demands are only going to increase and with Atomic Learning, we are prepared for future technological advancements.

About Sarah:
Sarah Kentner Received her Bachelor's in Education degree from Lake Superior State University and Master's in Educational Technology degree from Western Michigan University. She began her teaching career at Kamaile Public Charter Academy. Sarah then transferred to Central Montcalm as a sixth grade math teacher and helped with the implementation of a 1 to 1 initiative, one computer to one student. The next two years, she taught sixth grade math at Garden City Public Schools and provided leadership support for teachers in the transition to the new Common Core Standards as well as technology integration. She then joined the Instructional Technology and Research Support staff at Loyola University, Chicago as an Educational Technologist. Her current position includes supporting faculty and staff in design, development and implementation of content for their courses.

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