There are many certificates that someone can get that will help him or her to get a leg up in the teaching field. One of the certificates that is offered at UMD is the Educational Computing & Technology Certificate. This certificate is composed of four, four-credit classes that teach you how to use technology in the classroom and for administrative tasks.
Technology is becoming more and more important to school districts hiring new teachers. They need teachers who can keep up with the students who they are teaching. By getting this certificate, you will have a great certificate to add to your resume, and you also have a great amount of knowledge that can help you to be more efficient in the classroom.
Since the courses are only offered certain times of the year, I have found it very helpful you don’t have to take the courses in any particular order. The only exception to this is the first course in the series, as it is a prerequisite for the other courses. While it is nice you can take the courses in any order, you can plan your schedule to take the classes in order by course number. This could be very beneficial since many of the professors assume you have taken the previous classes. Since the courses are only offered during certain semesters, you really have to pay attention to when the courses are offered so you have time to fit everything into your schedule.
The first course in the certificate is EDUC 2000: Technology for Teaching and Learning or EDUC 5412: The Computer in Education. Either of these classes can count for completing the certificate even though they each have a slightly different focus. The Technology for Teaching and Learning course has a focus for working with elementary age students. This course teaches you to use tablets, SMART Boards, and other tools such as Excel and Prezi to enhance lessons in the elementary classroom. This course is offered in the spring and fall every year. The Computer in Education course has a focus on various operating platforms and teaches students how to use basic software used by teachers in the field. This course also teaches various tools to be used to enhance lessons. This course is offered in the fall, spring, and summer every year.
The next course is EDUC 5413: Teaching with Technology. This course is offered in the fall, spring, and summer every year. This course looks at more tools for teaching and assessing the effectiveness of using technology for various lessons and looking for the most appropriate tools to use with lessons. You will also learn about topics such as universal design for learning, teaching digital citizenship, SAMR Model, and ISTE-T standards.
The third class of the certificate (if you are taking them in order) is EDUC 5414: Using Technology for the Administrative Task of Teaching. This course is offered only in the fall of each school year. This course focuses on the background knowledge needed for various tasks of teaching with technology. The course discusses various technology conferences, assistive technology, and what it takes to be on a technology committee, and what tasks are involved with being the technology director at a school. This course also looks at how to write grants asking for technology and designing a 21st century classroom.
The final course is EDUC 5415: Teaching Online and Hybrid Courses. This courses covers topics such as copyright, free use, instructional design, and creating learning activities in regards to teaching classes that are either completely online or are partially online and partially face-to-face (hybrid courses). You also have the opportunity to design your own online course using the university online system. This course is offered only periodically in the spring.
I have found that the courses in this series have been very useful in my teaching experiences while I am in the field. This semester I have the opportunity to integrate a lot of what I have learned into my classroom because there is so much technology available to the students. The classroom has a SMART Board and the students each have their own iPad. In a world where technology is on the rise, education administrators are looking to hire teachers who know about technology and who want to incorporate it into their classrooms. This certificate is an excellent add-on to any teaching degree to give you more knowledge about the technology used in classrooms and how to effectively incorporate technology into the classroom.