Frequently Asked Questions
What is an eWorkshop?
Our eWorkshops are innovative online multi-media resources available free of cost to professional learning communities of educators who wish to collaboratively inquire into and improve their practice with bi/multilingual learners. To learn more about our eWorkshops, please click here.
Where do the eWorkshops come from?
In 2011, a $1.9 million grant was awarded to the University of Colorado Denver from the federal Department of Education’s Office of English Language Acquisition to design high quality professional learning for educators of multilingual students, particularly in content classrooms such as mathematics and science. This project, eCALLMS (PR Award # T365Z110177), created 33 eWorkshops and ended in August 2016.
In September 2016, a $2.7 million grant was awarded to the University of Nebraska Lincoln to continue working with the eWorkshops. The new project, ICMEE (PR Award # T365Z160351), expands access to the existing eWorkshops to at least 10 new states, designs more eWorkshops for varying groups of educators (administrators, school psychologists, etc.) and researches the impact and outcomes of eWorkshop participation. ICMEE will end in August 2021, but a goal of the project is to maintain access to our work for low cost/free beyond the scope of our grant funding.
To learn more details about the ICMEE project, please click here.
How do I get started with an eWorkshop?
Step 1: Identify the group of educators who will work together in an eWorkshop. We recommend no fewer than 3 educators and no more than 10 in one group. Ideal sized groups tend to be composed of 4-6 educators.
Step 2: As a group, decide which eWorkshop to take together (click here to read about the available eWorkshops). Also determine start date and your timeline for eWorkshop completion.
Step 3: Notify the ICMEE project with at least two weeks notice before your start date about which eWorkshop you plan to take and when you would like to start it. Use the contact form here.
Step 4: A member of the ICMEE will be in touch with enrollment information and will set up a webinar for the group to have a successful launch into the eWorkshop.
How much do I have to pay?
Nothing! Not only do we currently have grant funding to keep our eWorkshops free for any group of educators that would like to use them, but we are also taking advantage of a free platform to share our work (Canvas). Therefore, our eWorkshops should remain free/low-cost after our grant funding ends.
What eWorkshops are there for me to use?
We have many eWorkshops available for current use and many more in various stages of design. Please click here to read about what is currently available.
Are eWorkshops private?
eWorkshops are set up individually for each group of educators that chooses to take them. When educators enroll in an eWorkshop, they are enrolling in a password protected space where the only other people who have access to the information posted in the eWorkshop are ICMEE staff members and the other participants in the eWorkshop.
We are conducting research on eWorkshop participation. However, participating in the research on our eWorkshops is completely voluntary. The eWorkshops are free and available to all who wish to use them without any requirements to participate in research.
We do have to meet the reporting requirements for the grant, so eWorkshop participation does involve participating in some surveys at the beginning and end of the eWorkshop. We will never share any data collected via eWorkshop participation that would make participant’s identities known to our funders or to schools, districts or any other entity, even for those who participate in our research.
How do the eWorkshops work?
Our eWorkshops follow a three-part learning cycle that is repeated across six units of study.
Part 1: Explore
In Explore, participants engage with interesting content (videos, multimedia resources, concise readings) to explore new ideas related to the topic of the eWorkshop.
Part 2: Make it Work
In Make it Work, participants are given multiple options to choose from with ideas of how to take the new learning from Explore and put it into practice. One of the options is always “You Make it Work,” where participants can create their own option or tweek the ones we have provided to ensure their work in meaningful and practical for their local context.
Part 3: Share
In Share, participants upload materials and reflections from their Make it Work efforts to discuss the opportunities, experiences, challenges, successes, etc. that they encountered.
To see how an eWorkshop works, please watch this tutorial video.
I can’t log in. What do I do?
If you have started to use an eWorkshop and are having troubles logging back in, make sure you are using Canvas company website when you are trying to login to your eWorkshop.
If you are still having troubles logging in, please watch this tutorial video.
What do educators say about the eWorkshops?
In a survey conducted with eWorkshop participants in August 2016, 45 of the 47 respondents reported participating in 19 different eWorkshops. 70% of the respondents reported having changed their values, beliefs, opinions or expectations about teaching multilingual learners since taking an eWorkshop. Some of the changes reported include:
“I learned through participation in the eWorkshop how to better serve the needs of MLLs, and have been striving to incorporate new techniques into my lessons.”
“I realized that my MLLs needed more time to work together and be allowed to use languages other than English to share their ideas while they were learning.”
Read more about this research here.
Is an eWorkshop right for me?
The eWorkshops were designed for in-service educators across varying grade levels (look for the suggested grade level band in each eWorkshop description online) and varying content areas as well as specialties. Educators with master’s degrees in English as a Second Language have found value in the eWorkshops as have those who have never taken a class or participated in professional learning regarding working with multilingual students. Because our eWorkshops are flexible in terms of how educators engage with the content, they are also highly differentiated for each educator that participates to be able to take ownership over their own learning. Educators are most successful in our eWorkshops when they enjoy what they are learning and find it relevant to their immediate practice. This is most attainable when educators have substantial choice and control over their engagement and participation. Therefore, our eWorkshops are developed to provide exactly that.
If this sounds like something for you, please get in touch with us! Click here for our contact form.