Northern Virginia Community College believes that education is the cornerstone of a free society. In keeping with the mission of the Virginia Community College system, the mission of NVCC is to respond to the educational needs of a changing community and its institutions, ensuring that all individuals in the Northern Virginia area have an opportunity to develop and enhance their values, skills and knowledge. To achieve this mission, the following general goals are established:
. Re-engineer our business practices to achieve efficiencies and economies that help to control costs while improving the quality of administrative services, and
. Foster economic development in cooperation with other educational institutions and economic development initiatives in our region.
Critical Success Factors
To implement this plan, NVCC recognizes that the following critical factors must be present:
. Appropriate funding, including new resources, continuation of technology funding, creative local financing and the reallocation of existing resources.
. Quality customer service and end-user support.
. Technical proficiency in both computing and communications technologies and large-scale change management, either from an internal source or from external consultants.
. Comprehensive training programs for faculty and staff.
. Effective communications within the college community with respect to the implementation process and the expected outcomes.
. Application of the technology in both instruction and administration.
. Effective followership by the college community based on confidence in the system.
2. Develop a responsive posture to the needs of students, businesses and government agencies in our community.
3. Encourage active discussion, experimentation in and adoption of new applications in the use of technology to aid the learning process.
4. Share resources, skills and knowledge with academic, business and industrial organizations in our area.
6. Provide leadership through a pragmatic computing plan for 1998-99 beyond.
7. Enhance the Teaching and Learning Environment through innovative use of technology.
8. Provide a detailed spending plan to accomplish the goals of the Plan.
In support of our long-term goal for any-to-any connectivity, and in support of the VCCS minimum standards and application guidelines, Northern Virginia Community College fully implemented its 1997-98 Technology Plan. The following summarizes the technology environment created at the College as a result of this plan.
A special academic interface to the World Wide Web (NOVAONLINE) was established to facilitate access to instructional courses, modules and resources. Access to College publications, the Catalog, Class Schedules and other information was made available on the WWW through links on the College's home page. Policies and procedures for managing use of the WWW were developed.
More than 56 courses added WWW components, 11 new asynchronous distance learning courses were developed for delivery through the WWW, 7 new asynchronous distance learning courses in other formats were offered, and 24 courses were developed for offering through compressed video. The College was an active participant in offering distance learning courses statewide through the Virginia Distance Education Network and the SREB Electronic Campus, and now has over 120 distance learning courses available.
Through the College Technical Applications Center, faculty and staff were provided with access and training in web development software, electronic discussion group software, and presentation software.
An on-line grading system that allowed faculty to enter final student grades directly from their desktop was developed and implemented to take advantage of the computers on faculty desks. This eliminated the need for thousands of scan sheets and hundreds of hours of manual labor involved in processing grades.
Financial support was provided to each Campus Information Technology Group/Teaching Learning Technology Roundtable to support mentoring programs, experimentation, research, and the software/hardware needed to implement these activities.
All faculty and staff received a fully-featured networked computer on their desktop with e-mail, Internet access, and the Microsoft Office Suite. Dial-up access to faculty/staff e-mail was made available through the web for those with their own Internet Service Provider
More than 5,000 data and/or voice connections (i.e., cable drops/jacks) were installed in offices, classrooms, and student laboratories. Existing communications rooms were expanded, and approximately 15 new communications rooms were constructed. Between these building/floor comm rooms and local service closets/cabinets installed for lab/classroom support, hub and related communications equipment (including 29 control access units and 125 lobe attachment modules) was added to the NVCC network. In addition, $94,500 was invested in network backbone equipment (for upgrades to previously purchased backbone components, plus the purchase of 11 token ring switches).
A complement of 19 new servers provides network services across this upgraded infrastructure. All the servers operate under Windows NT. As new services are added, the Technical Support Services staff monitors and adjusts loads across these servers, and plans additional capacity requirements. Currently, five of the servers function as campus file servers, and six are domain controller/print servers. The other units are devoted to: Web services; faculty/staff e-mail; student e-mail; SQL and SMS; Oracle; phone system; back-up to phone system; tape back-up. Plans are underway to add a separate file server for College staff requirements in the Brault (Administration) Building.
The phone system mentioned above is an "open-PBX" type. The software runs on a server equipped with Dialogic hardware. Feature offerings include on-premises voice mail, automatic call distribution, interactive voice response, auto-attendant and computer-telephony integration ("screen pop" capability and unified voice/fax/e-mail messaging using Microsoft Exchange.) The voice mail portions of the system are being pilot-tested in the Financial Aid and Purchasing offices. The full system is being installed to support the newly created Technical Support Help Desk.
A Help Desk was established based on McAfee's HelpDesk product (licensed both centrally at Technical Support Services, and locally, at each campus) to assist in the tracking and resolution of technical support calls.
Campus Computer Applications Training: To support the computer rollout in the summer of 1997, NVCC hired a training contractor to provide a technology instructional assistant/trainer on each campus during the fall semester. Throughout the fall, and continuing with 3 full-time trainers in the spring, these campus technology instructional assistants provided both formal training courses and ad hoc training and consulting assistance to individual faculty and staff. More than 750 faculty and staff members participated in the formal training classes, including introductory, intermediate, and advanced level courses in Windows 95, MS-Word, MS-Access, MS-Excel, and MS-PowerPoint, as well as introductory courses in Internet Explorer, Microsoft Exchange or Outlook E-Mail, PC Troubleshooting, Windows NT networking, and Home Page design. In all, the participants enrolled in nearly 3,000 training classes through this program alone.
Technical Staff Training: The Technology Training program also supported the enrollment of more than 70 key technology support staff in advanced level courses on the operating systems that run the college computers and networks. The classes provided used the Microsoft curriculum for courses in Windows NT Server Administration and Windows 95 Installation and Support. We chose to have these courses taught at an authorized technical education center to ensure that those taking the course work got standardized technical training. This also permits our staff to seek Microsoft certifications if they wish. Specific training was also provided to power users for Help Desk software and other products.
Training Materials: The technology budget funded the acquisition, production, and printing of 15 titles of custom computer training manuals to support the teaching of our computer applications classes for faculty and staff. It also provided basic software reference guides to each division and office, as well as textbooks to support more advanced technology courses such as Object Oriented Design. The college purchased licenses for 66 computer based training programs to make training for MCSE classes, Office 95, and numerous other programs available through the college intranet.
Teaching Learning Technology Roundtables: Each campus received funding to support the use of instructional technologies in the classroom. Campuses developed and implemented mentoring programs, paid for travel to conferences and specialized workshops, provided software and ancillary hardware necessary for implementing technology in the classroom, and provided faculty with release time through these funds.
Technology Training Funded from Other Sources: Faculty and Classified Staff Tuition Assistance funding through the Human Resource Development budget and local funds have supported enrollment in more than 150 technology-related credit and continuing education courses at institutions such as George Mason University, Virginia Commonwealth University, University of Maryland, Rutgers University, Strayer College, Lord Fairfax Community College, and NVCC. Such courses included Web Page Design, Computer Science, Visual Basic, TCP/IP, Virtual Design, UNIX, Oracle, C++, WAN, LAN, Java, and others.
The Human Resource Development Budget also provided funds for discipline-specific conferences and job-related technology training for both faculty and staff. Divisional funds set aside for professional development, as well as operating funds in various units, were also used to support numerous technical training activities.
The College Technical Applications Center, along with campus staff, offered numerous workshops to over 240 faculty and staff on developing and using web-based applications and compressed video. They also held a Summer Institute for 75 faculty, offering hands-on experience and demonstrations of technology-based instructional applications and tools. In addition to the workshops, TAC provided faculty with access to a wide variety of web-application tools, such as web editing software, electronic discussion group software, and presentation software.
Governance and Support
The Technology Governance process at the College was reviewed and revised slightly to insure participation by all campus and staff units. Campus Information Technology Groups/Teaching Learning Technology Roundtables have formal roles in the governance process through the Information Technology Committee.
Technical support staff were deployed on all campuses, and a central Help Desk was created. A new application support unit, the Technical Applications Center, was established to help faculty and staff employ new technology.
1998-1999 Technology Goals
Based on the College's mission, strategic planning,
accomplishments of the past two years and the current directions established
for the VCCS, the following technology goals have been identified for the
Faculty and staff members will use general office software tools on a regular basis to communicate with each other and with students.
General office software will be kept current (i.e., about I8 months maximum behind a current release).
A world wide web (WWW) home page and topic pages will be created and maintained for the college and each division. They will provide general college information services to students, staff and the public.
Network file and print services will meet VCCS guidelines
E-mail (POP3 compliant) including directory services will be available for every faculty and staff member, and for every student
Registration for services (e.g., E-mail)will follow the on-line registration application model that includes directory services, security, etc.
COV 95-1 disaster recovery planning documents will be completed. This includes impact and risk assessments for the whole College as well as each campus location to identify appropriate security, firewall, and disaster recovery processes that need to be installed following the appropriate VCCS models.
Year 2000 review and action program as outlined by the Council for Information Management will be completed. Monthly status reports on activities as mandated by the Commonwealth of Virginia will be submitted.
VCCS policy 184.108.40.206 Computer Competency Requirements will be implemented.
The College will continue to contribute to the definition and design of the SIS model. The College will use the SIS model, when available, to prepare a college implementation plan for SIS.
The College will continue to participate in the process to convert to RADSS and new technologies in order to accommodate the new SIS database.
The College will implement IHRIS as soon as possible within the Department of Personnel and Training timetable and guidelines.
Resource 25 modules will be implemented, when available, to improve facilities scheduling, usage, and reporting through appropriate Resource 25 modules.
The College will continue to participate in the definition of requirements for a new Administrative Information System.
The College will develop a program of training for all appropriate staff in the Oracle products now available for use.
b. Query tools - reports, tabulations, labels, etc.
c. Application design and code generation
The College will meet the VCCS guidelines for desktop computer access:
b. There will be a minimum of one fully-featured Pentium a minimum of one computer for each 7% of FTES for student access in classrooms or labs that meets or exceeds minimum VCCS technical guidelines
All primary workstation and laboratory microcomputers will continue to be connected to the campus network, and the campus network will continue to be accessible in all campus locations (offices, labs, classrooms, auditoria, etc.).
The network on each campus will continue to meet guidelines for cable and service levels.
Each campus network will continue to be connected to VCCnet following the System Office instructions and guidelines.
Faculty, staff, and students will continue to have dial-in access to the VCCS Intranet through a local Internet service provider (ISP).
Each campus will continue to maintain at least one compressed video Commonwealth classrooms.
Commonwealth Classrooms will be upgraded by conversion to ATM switched technology for point to point (2 locations) videoconference /distance learning sessions to eliminate the video bridge component for 2 way sessions.
Proxy servers and software will be installed to allow remote access to data bases and other resources.
The College will establish additional Intranet applications (e.g., a Net News capability for discussion groups, a push news delivery approach, chat rooms for collaborative projects).
On-campus and off-campus professional development programs will be conducted that maximize faculty and staff exposure within the following categories.
Governance and Support Goals
The College's needs for functional technical support have been assessed, and the College will
b. Provide technical services support through a central division staffed by appropriately trained engineers and on-campus technical staff.
The College will pursue curricular changes within academic disciplines and programs to incorporate information emanating from new technologies into course content where appropriate.
The College will, through training and other support mechanisms, encourage teaching faculty in developing the technological skills appropriate for their discipline or program.
The College will support continued operation of Teaching Learning Technology Roundtables on each campus and at the College level.
The College will provide training in software applications that deal with course content as well as with instructional techniques and administrative skills.
Technology Projects and Budgets
In order to accomplish the technology goals established for 1998-99, the following projects have been established.
Support Services ($ 675,000)
Additional Technology Lab Support will be added through student hires to provide increased assistance in the campus computer labs. ($150,000)
Technical Applications Center activities will be continued through its staff of generalists. (Funding is included in regular College budgets and through continuation of the funds for Technology positions.)
College Help Desk activities will be continued through
Technical Support Services staff, newly acquired technical infrastructure
and software, and continuation of the funds for Technology positions.
In conjunction with these activities, each campus/College staff office will assess the adequacy of the current technology plan for meeting the College's needs. They will also develop technology objectives and priorities for the future.
The allocation of funds to each unit shown below is based on the College's regular enrollment-driven budget allocation model.
Application Development Budget Allocations
|Extended Learning Institute||
|Academic & Student Services||
|Administrative & Financial Services||
|College Marketing & Public Affairs||
Inventories show 3,611 computers currently in use at the College with 176 of those being 386-level or below. All computers below 486-level will be replaced. The number of new computers being purchased should free up enough 486-computers to replace fully all 386 or older computers. The distribution of new computers is shown below. In allocating the newest computers, priority will be given to student labs and power users.
Infrastructure Upgrades ($185,000)
CT304 - Office
CS124 - Office
A&R - 2 LAN Drops
CG 209 - Counseling Center
Six additional drops in room 109 of the Brault building
Activate drops in CM 114, CM 242, Dining Room, CM 123 and CM105.
AE building classrooms
Tool Room - 2 drops
Photo & Design Building
Vet Tech, IDS & Science
Maintenance building - one additional drop.
RM 138 Mac Lab
RM 268 Mac Lab
Cabling in conduit to MS
Termination of automotive building fiber
MC240 - Math Lab
Orientation and application training will be provided on the campuses by technology instructional assistants or contract trainers. Individual assistance will be provided to users in their office environment and group application courses and training will be provided in campus computer labs. The HR technology training coordinator will be responsible for implementing this plan, hosting group meetings for trainers and Campus Training Coordinators and managing the technology training budget. Applications training up to the advanced level will include: Windows 95, Introduction to the Internet, MS-Word, MS-Access, MS-Excel. MS-PowerPoint, Microsoft Exchange or Outlook E-Mail, and Home Page design (on appropriate software). This applications training will also include training for upgrades of the listed software programs or other new programs selected for purchase by the Information Technology Committee (e.g., Windows 98 or Office 97 upgrades). This funding is estimated to provide 40+ weeks of training during the year, scheduled so as to accommodate maximum participation of and support to faculty and staff.
College Technical Support Staff ($ 20,000)
Continued training in TCP/IP, Local Area Networks/Wide Area Networks (LAN/WAN), Windows NT support, network administration, system engineering, installation, maintenance, security, and other training requirements associated with the technical operations of the Client/Server Intranet-Based Computing Environment will be provided to College Technical Support Staff as needed. Training requirements are to be identified by the Director of Technical Support Services. Individuals enrolled in extensive and expensive training programs may be required to sign a contract indicating that they will work at the college for a certain period upon completion of training or reimburse the college for the cost of their training.
Instructional Support Staff ($ 15,000)
Specialized training for instructional technologists, instructional assistants, and other instructional support staff will be provided so they can acquire the expertise and skills necessary for them to assist others at the College to take advantage of modern PC-based instructional technologies. These include training courses that promote instructional applications development using the Internet, multi-media presentations, netmeetings, databases, Windows NT, LAN, graphic layout and design, etc.. It also covers any training cost associated with implementation and maintenance of the student financial aid management system, loans, grants, etc. Individuals enrolled in extensive and expensive training programs may be required to sign a contract indicating that they will work at the college for a certain period upon completion of training or reimburse the college for the cost of their training.
Campus Technology Support Staff ($ 10,000)
Technical training will be provided for positions that support the procurement, installation, maintenance, and operations of the campus local area networks as needed. These positions include Installation and Repair Supervisors (Information Technology Managers), Agency Management Analysts (Information Technology Specialists), Computer Network Support Technicians, Instructional Center Staff, and others. Training will cover in installing computers, upgrading computers, troubleshooting, local area network maintenance, and network management and security. Individuals enrolled in extensive and expensive training programs may be required to sign a contract indicating that they will work at the college for a certain period upon completion of training or reimburse the college for the cost of their training.
Other Training Programs ($10,000)
Other training courses will be provided that will not be offered by the campus technology instructional assistant but which may be required by some faculty and staff members who are not covered by other funding categories. These courses include, but are not limited to, the following: advanced level courses in Microsoft Office, Home Page design, Windows NT, introduction to the LAN, PC troubleshooting, graphics layout and design, multimedia presentations, SQL servers, Oracle systems support, SIS systems, Resource 25, and additional state-mandated or other applications. Transition courses may be offered for those who have already acquired skills in particular applications and are converting from one proprietary program to another. Participation in other technology related courses, credit and non-credit, offered through NVCC may also be funded. Individuals enrolled in extensive and expensive training programs may be required to sign a contract indicating that they will work at the college for a certain period upon completion of training or reimburse the college for the cost of their training.
Office Technology Assistants ($ 10,000)
Additional training for office technology assistants to assist their respective offices with local hardware and software problems will be provided. Each organizational or office unit's designated staff member (the "Office Technology Assistant") may receive training in troubleshooting basic PC problems, network printer problems, and training to the advanced level in application software. They may also need to take courses in Windows NT, LAN introduction, and PC troubleshooting. These designees will be the first person called when help is needed with the PC or other peripheral equipment. Individuals enrolled in extensive and expensive training programs may be required to sign a contract indicating that they will work at the college for a certain period upon completion of training or reimburse the college for the cost of their training.
Training Manuals and Videos, Text Books, Computer Based Training Programs, and other training media: ($20,000):
Instructional manuals needed to supplement classroom and computer based training instruction for faculty and staff wishing to improve their technology skills will be provided. Course textbooks for technical courses, reference books for offices or library reserve, satellite courses or other subscriptions, computer based training software, may also be covered. The specific training materials will be determined by the Information Technology Committee with input from the Campus and College Staff Information Technology Groups.
FUNDS AVAILABLE FOR TECHNOLOGY PLAN IMPLEMENTATION
ETF for Technology Equipment $ 862,077EXPENDITURE SUMMARY
Student Fee @ $1 625,000
Additional 50c Fee (Spring 99 only) 150,000
General Fund & Prof Development funds 700,000
Continuation of Salaries for Technology Positions
Technology Lab Support Staff 150,000
Application Development 137,500
Year 2000 conversions 100,000
Oracle Training/Implementation 20,000
Resource 25 and SIS Planning/Implementation 52,500
Conversion to Office 97 40,000
Compressed Video Network Upgrades 115,000
Computer Upgrades 862,077
Infrastructure Upgrades 185,000