Teachers College (TC) presents the 2017 Innovation Award. This inaugural award recognizes and celebrates excellence in student innovation at the intersection of learning, design, research, and technology.
The Innovation Award is actually more than a single event. Leading up to the award is a three month supporting program for teams with high-potential talent and ideas. This program is selective and designed to guide teams through the process of developing concepts into product prototypes.
In this program your team will:
At the end of the program, final product prototypes will be judged by a panel of experts in a culminating competition and showcase event.
Innovation is broadly defined as an original idea, product, method, process, or model that can make a positive impact. The TC EdTech Initiative understands that education and technology innovation comes in many forms. The following table demonstrates the possible range of submissions:
|Formats||Digital, Non-digital, Hybrid|
|Technologies||Web-apps, games and toys, virtual reality, software, hardware, etc.|
|Products||Physical artifacts, designed experiences, models and processes, etc.|
|Perspectives||Cognitive, classroom culture, research, data analytics, social justice, etc.|
|Audiences||K-12, Higher Ed, Distance, Teachers, Parents, Administrators etc.|
This list above is far from exhaustive, but the takeaway is that students from all subject matters and different technology and technical expertise are encouraged to participate.
Innovation in EdTech is interdisciplinary and collaborative by nature. It takes both technology and domain expertise to do it with depth, and to do it right. As such, the Innovation Award is open to all Columbia University students. Opportunities will be provided to help you find the right team.
See Students for details.
Problems and projects will be wide-ranging. The following are five areas that will be considered.
|Innovation||Innovative quality of the problem, approach, and solution|
|Process||Evolution of the project based on feedback, documentation, and communication over the course of the program|
|Relevance||Significance of the addressed topic and problem|
|Research||Rationale based upon literature review and supporting research|
|Value||Potential impact and effectiveness of a solution|
These categories are not intended to be a definitive measure. Rather, they will be used as a guide to allow fairness and equity in the proceedings.
Projects will be evaluated by a panel of judges comprised of a range of disciplines and perspectives (e.g. TC and Columbia faculty members, Edtech entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, teachers, school administrators, members of the student senate.)
In a recent Education Week article, President Susan Fuhrman described how educational technology startups and companies are worryingly disconnected from researchers and academics (Fuhrman, 2017).
Millions of dollars are spent on educational technology products that are ineffective and unproven. These products are often designed without collaboration with researchers and are not aligned with current learning sciences research.
Through the collaborative efforts of the TC EdTech Initiative and the Communication, Media, Learning Technologies Design Program (CMLTD), the 2017 Innovation Award is one of TC’s first public steps forward in addressing this issue.
By connecting students from different disciplines and research within the TC community, and bridging the gaps between institution and industry, it’s our goal to inspire innovation in the field of applied learning.
TC is committed to the future of educational technology with a special emphasis on sound practices grounded in research. We are proud to be hosting this event and delighted by the traction that has been building behind the spirit.