Report for Quarter 3, Program Year 1998-1999

Name of Organization: Center for Literacy Studies

Region: Southern LINCS

Reporting Period: Report for Quarter 3, April 1 - June 30, 1999

Project Director: Dr. Mary Ziegler

Report Prepared By: Mary Ziegler, Limin Mu, Donna Brian, Angela Rivera

I. Goals and Objectives for last quarter:

  • Keep abreast with NIFL on LINCS redesign issues.
  • Work with states on mini-grant activities.
  • Work on SLINCS/GTE LAB site issues.
  • Add resources to SLINCS and LAB sites.
  • Provide technical support for Consortium members.
  • Continue to publicize LINCS.
  • Prepare staff change with the Hub and provide training programs for SLINCS staff members.

II. Activities planned for the quarter:

  • Hold advisory meeting for ALT arrangement and LINCS new design
  • Hold GTE/LAB meeting at Knoxville with staff from NIFL and Virginia Adult Education and Literacy Centers
  • 0Conduct LAB conference calls
  • Continue developing the LAB with the Virginia Literacy Resource Centers.
  • Present LINCS at state and other conferences.
  • Continue cataloging on-line locally produced materials.
  • Provide technical support to consortium members in various areas
  • Participate in NIFL design group discussions and evaluation activities
  • Co-work with states NC, AL, OK, SC in evaluating LINCS new templates

III. Major outcomes during the last quarter:

  1. Mini-grant activities status

By the end of June, mini-grant recipients in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and West Virginia all reported making progress on their projects. A date of July 15 for submission of learning activities to the LAB site was suggested. By June 30, six of the expected 140 LAB activities had already been received and three states had made arrangements to extend the due date to the end of July. Additionally, 24 test submissions were made through the LAB template on the LAB site in order to perfect the functioning of the "submit activity" process. The discussion list "labrats-news" had received nine posts with 32 practitioners from seven states receiving the posts.

As a part of their mini-grants to develop LAB lessons, practitioners in Georgia, Kentucky, and Texas received training in use of the LAB site. In addition, two trainings in Tennessee provided hands-on training for 70 teachers in using the LAB template for developing their own learning activities.

B. GTE/LAB meeting at Knoxville

The LAB has been continuously enriched in content, content organization, site layout, and site navigation. The team from Virginia and the SLINCS team from the Center for Literacy Studies met together in Knoxville June 30-July 1. In addition to finally meeting and getting to know one another, we determined the next tasks that needed to be accomplished to actually get lessons into the site and to promote the use of the LAB. Responsibilities of the various team members were clarified, a plan of work was laid out, and a time line was established. Plans were made for the team members who are actually responsible for reading the submitted activities and editing them for use to meet August 1 and 2 in Washington, DC. The purpose for this meeting will be to finalize selection criteria, develop a rubric for evaluating the activities, and determine the protocol for processing the activities and responding to the practitioners who submit the activities.

C. Web publishing

Web publishing activities this quarter were focused on creating some new pages and updating the existing sites. The following pages were published on the hub server during the last quarter:

  • LAB site help page at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/gtelab/help.html
  • LAB site sitemap at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/gtelab/sitemap.html
  • Southern LINCS Quarterly Report at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/reports/01-03-99.html
  • LINCS copyright brief at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/copyright/
  • LINCS HOT SITES Selection Criteria at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/hot_sites/
  • LINCS Selection Criteria at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/selection_criteria/
  • LINCS Special Collections Guidelines at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/sp_collections/
  • Professional Development on the Internet: Technology and Training at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/
  • What is LINCS at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/whatis.html
  • LINCS infrastructure at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/infrastructure.html
  • LINCS major goals at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/lincsgoals.html
  • What are LINCS special collections? at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/whatare.html
  • LINCS special collections at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/spcollect.html
  • Getting started with technology at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/getstart.html
  • Use technology in teaching and learning at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/usetech.html
  • Technology planning at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/techplanning.html
  • WWW resources at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/www.html
  • Hardware and software at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/hardsoft.html
  • LINCS training at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/training.html
  • Technology skills and awareness at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/techskills.html

The following pages/sites were frequently updated during the quarter:

  • The whole site of Learning Activities Bank at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/gtelab/
  • The whole site of Lessons from the Holocaust at http://www.coe.utk.edu/literacy/holo.html
  • Special Collection -the Workforce Education site at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/special/workforce/default.html (partially)
  • The Southern LINCS Web site at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/ (partially)

D. Technical assistance

168 email messages in and out and 31 phone calls were logged for technical assistance during the last quarter. Topics covered by these messages and phone calls included contractual assistance, server backup, server upgrade, Y2K problems, WAIS databases, cataloging, discussion lists, Web-based calendar, Web-based list archive, Web-based discussion board, LAB site construction, and server administration.

IV. Services provided to Consortium members:

  • Provided support to practitioners and adult learners who needed help through the channel of phone calls, Southern LINCS Web site feedback form, and email.
  • Provided assistance to states in conducting their Mini-grant activities
  • Provided support to states in cataloging locally produced materials and using WAIS databases (corrected data in the databases)
  • Provided and maintained discussion lists for states and the region (setup, sign on, sign off, list archives)
  • Forwarded timely information to states through the hub2-news listserv
  • Posted general information to the hub2-news listserv (First Monday)
  • Continued collecting feedback and input for the LAB site
  • Conducted activities in Tennessee and Virginia to collaborate on the development of the Learning Activities Bank in order to leverage the GTE funds
  • Provided presentation and publicity materials for Consortium members to use at conferences and in-service training
  • Presented and co-presented LINCS at state and other conferences (e.g.: COABE'99, TAACE'99)
  • Provided daily technical support for Consortium members (Web page search program, compressed files, control of the size of attachment for list messages, technical survey, electronic calendar, etc.) through eamil and phone calls
  • Collaborated in planning national LINCS meetings
  • Provided regular server maintenance, job control, system backup, and other technical services to the Consortium through the server located at the Center for Literacy Studies
  • Started the new system backup process for the hub server
  • Started working on Y2K problems for the hub server
  • Started preparing for the hub server upgrade
  • Created labrats-news list for the mini-grant group
  • Started cleaning up the hub server and other maintenance jobs so the new SLINCS and LAB sites could have a better environment in which to reside
  • Training and co-work with SLINCS staff on the following topics: server infrastructure, email system, list system, FTP, server maintenance, system turndown, system startup, power failure, system backup, basic HTML, Web publishing issues, and WAIS cataloging

V. Use of Funds:

Use of funds is proceeding well according to the plans outlined in Southern LINCS second project -year proposal. Travel expenses for training at ALT were higher than budgeted. The Southern LINCS is expecting to have its Web server updated in the next project year. Details will be outlined in the Project Year Three proposal.

VI. Barriers and concerns in meeting objectives:

Getting as many states as possible to use the new LINCS design templates is both a concern and focus . States have the ongoing concern of limited resources. Frequent staff change is another concern. Many states have changed personnel since the project began. The Southern LINCS Librarian, Tommie Branscum, who joined the LINCS staff in April this year, has left us for a new job just recently. We are in the process of finding a new librarian to speed up the cataloging processes. Some of the activities submitted to the LAB from GTE mini-grant recipients were not of sufficiently high quality to be used as submitted. It will take additional time and negotiation to provide feedback to strengthen the activities to the status of exemplary so that they can be used to populate the LAB.

VII. Collaboration with NIFL

Collaboration with NIFL has been going well. The Hub has more contacts with NIFL through developing collaboration on new GTE proposals, meeting regularly with Jaleh Behroozi and other regional LINCS directors. Collaboration with NIFL has also been achieved through the projects of LINCS redesign, LINCS selection criteria, and the GTE Learning Activities Bank. A key activity that is helpful for the collaboration throughout the whole project is the monthly meetings with the NIFL and the other regional hubs. We are looking forward to the December nation-wide state level LINCS meeting in New Orleans.

VIII. Goals for the next quarter

  • Completely map the existing SLINCS Web site to the new LINCS templates
  • Co-work with NIFL to install and test the new searchable databases
  • Speed up the cataloging process for the new regional databases
  • Support and co-work with states in mapping their web sites to the new LINCS templates
  • Continue to work with states on completing mini-grants contracts
  • Get as many high-quality learning activity lesson plans as possible and put them on-line
  • Continue to add resources to the SLINCS and LAB sites
  • Continue to build partnerships throughout the region
  • Continue technical support for Consortium members as needed, and
  • Present LINCS at state and various other conferences

IX. Statistics:

A. Resources

Number of materials cataloged - 17

Number of Web-based materials produced and published . 21

B. Training

Number of broad-based presentations and training . 2 (COABE and TAACE)

Number of targeted training events . 5 (for LAB and new SLINCS staff)

Total people trained . 65

C. Technical assistance

Number of phone calls - 31

Number of emails - 168

Number of electronic discussion lists set up for field - 1 (total 14 lists)Name of Organization: Center for Literacy Studies

Region: Southern LINCS

Reporting Period: Report for Quarter 3, April 1 - June 30, 1999

Project Director: Dr. Mary Ziegler

Report Prepared By: Mary Ziegler, Limin Mu, Donna Brian, Angela Rivera

I. Goals and Objectives for last quarter:

  • Keep abreast with NIFL on LINCS redesign issues.
  • Work with states on mini-grant activities.
  • Work on SLINCS/GTE LAB site issues.
  • Add resources to SLINCS and LAB sites.
  • Provide technical support for Consortium members.
  • Continue to publicize LINCS.
  • Prepare staff change with the Hub and provide training programs for SLINCS staff members.

II. Activities planned for the quarter:

  • Hold advisory meeting for ALT arrangement and LINCS new design
  • Hold GTE/LAB meeting at Knoxville with staff from NIFL and Virginia Adult Education and Literacy Centers
  • 0Conduct LAB conference calls
  • Continue developing the LAB with the Virginia Literacy Resource Centers.
  • Present LINCS at state and other conferences.
  • Continue cataloging on-line locally produced materials.
  • Provide technical support to consortium members in various areas
  • Participate in NIFL design group discussions and evaluation activities
  • Co-work with states NC, AL, OK, SC in evaluating LINCS new templates

III. Major outcomes during the last quarter:

  1. Mini-grant activities status

By the end of June, mini-grant recipients in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and West Virginia all reported making progress on their projects. A date of July 15 for submission of learning activities to the LAB site was suggested. By June 30, six of the expected 140 LAB activities had already been received and three states had made arrangements to extend the due date to the end of July. Additionally, 24 test submissions were made through the LAB template on the LAB site in order to perfect the functioning of the "submit activity" process. The discussion list "labrats-news" had received nine posts with 32 practitioners from seven states receiving the posts.

As a part of their mini-grants to develop LAB lessons, practitioners in Georgia, Kentucky, and Texas received training in use of the LAB site. In addition, two trainings in Tennessee provided hands-on training for 70 teachers in using the LAB template for developing their own learning activities.

B. GTE/LAB meeting at Knoxville

The LAB has been continuously enriched in content, content organization, site layout, and site navigation. The team from Virginia and the SLINCS team from the Center for Literacy Studies met together in Knoxville June 30-July 1. In addition to finally meeting and getting to know one another, we determined the next tasks that needed to be accomplished to actually get lessons into the site and to promote the use of the LAB. Responsibilities of the various team members were clarified, a plan of work was laid out, and a time line was established. Plans were made for the team members who are actually responsible for reading the submitted activities and editing them for use to meet August 1 and 2 in Washington, DC. The purpose for this meeting will be to finalize selection criteria, develop a rubric for evaluating the activities, and determine the protocol for processing the activities and responding to the practitioners who submit the activities.

C. Web publishing

Web publishing activities this quarter were focused on creating some new pages and updating the existing sites. The following pages were published on the hub server during the last quarter:

  • LAB site help page at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/gtelab/help.html
  • LAB site sitemap at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/gtelab/sitemap.html
  • Southern LINCS Quarterly Report at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/reports/01-03-99.html
  • LINCS copyright brief at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/copyright/
  • LINCS HOT SITES Selection Criteria at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/hot_sites/
  • LINCS Selection Criteria at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/selection_criteria/
  • LINCS Special Collections Guidelines at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/lincs/sp_collections/
  • Professional Development on the Internet: Technology and Training at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/
  • What is LINCS at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/whatis.html
  • LINCS infrastructure at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/infrastructure.html
  • LINCS major goals at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/lincsgoals.html
  • What are LINCS special collections? at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/whatare.html
  • LINCS special collections at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/spcollect.html
  • Getting started with technology at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/getstart.html
  • Use technology in teaching and learning at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/usetech.html
  • Technology planning at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/techplanning.html
  • WWW resources at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/www.html
  • Hardware and software at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/hardsoft.html
  • LINCS training at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/training.html
  • Technology skills and awareness at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/techtraining/coabe99/techskills.html

The following pages/sites were frequently updated during the quarter:

  • The whole site of Learning Activities Bank at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/gtelab/
  • The whole site of Lessons from the Holocaust at http://www.coe.utk.edu/literacy/holo.html
  • Special Collection -the Workforce Education site at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/special/workforce/default.html (partially)
  • The Southern LINCS Web site at http://slincs.coe.utk.edu/ (partially)

D. Technical assistance

168 email messages in and out and 31 phone calls were logged for technical assistance during the last quarter. Topics covered by these messages and phone calls included contractual assistance, server backup, server upgrade, Y2K problems, WAIS databases, cataloging, discussion lists, Web-based calendar, Web-based list archive, Web-based discussion board, LAB site construction, and server administration.

IV. Services provided to Consortium members:

  • Provided support to practitioners and adult learners who needed help through the channel of phone calls, Southern LINCS Web site feedback form, and email.
  • Provided assistance to states in conducting their Mini-grant activities
  • Provided support to states in cataloging locally produced materials and using WAIS databases (corrected data in the databases)
  • Provided and maintained discussion lists for states and the region (setup, sign on, sign off, list archives)
  • Forwarded timely information to states through the hub2-news listserv
  • Posted general information to the hub2-news listserv (First Monday)
  • Continued collecting feedback and input for the LAB site
  • Conducted activities in Tennessee and Virginia to collaborate on the development of the Learning Activities Bank in order to leverage the GTE funds
  • Provided presentation and publicity materials for Consortium members to use at conferences and in-service training
  • Presented and co-presented LINCS at state and other conferences (e.g.: COABE'99, TAACE'99)
  • Provided daily technical support for Consortium members (Web page search program, compressed files, control of the size of attachment for list messages, technical survey, electronic calendar, etc.) through eamil and phone calls
  • Collaborated in planning national LINCS meetings
  • Provided regular server maintenance, job control, system backup, and other technical services to the Consortium through the server located at the Center for Literacy Studies
  • Started the new system backup process for the hub server
  • Started working on Y2K problems for the hub server
  • Started preparing for the hub server upgrade
  • Created labrats-news list for the mini-grant group
  • Started cleaning up the hub server and other maintenance jobs so the new SLINCS and LAB sites could have a better environment in which to reside
  • Training and co-work with SLINCS staff on the following topics: server infrastructure, email system, list system, FTP, server maintenance, system turndown, system startup, power failure, system backup, basic HTML, Web publishing issues, and WAIS cataloging

V. Use of Funds:

Use of funds is proceeding well according to the plans outlined in Southern LINCS second project -year proposal. Travel expenses for training at ALT were higher than budgeted. The Southern LINCS is expecting to have its Web server updated in the next project year. Details will be outlined in the Project Year Three proposal.

VI. Barriers and concerns in meeting objectives:

Getting as many states as possible to use the new LINCS design templates is both a concern and focus . States have the ongoing concern of limited resources. Frequent staff change is another concern. Many states have changed personnel since the project began. The Southern LINCS Librarian, Tommie Branscum, who joined the LINCS staff in April this year, has left us for a new job just recently. We are in the process of finding a new librarian to speed up the cataloging processes. Some of the activities submitted to the LAB from GTE mini-grant recipients were not of sufficiently high quality to be used as submitted. It will take additional time and negotiation to provide feedback to strengthen the activities to the status of exemplary so that they can be used to populate the LAB.

VII. Collaboration with NIFL

Collaboration with NIFL has been going well. The Hub has more contacts with NIFL through developing collaboration on new GTE proposals, meeting regularly with Jaleh Behroozi and other regional LINCS directors. Collaboration with NIFL has also been achieved through the projects of LINCS redesign, LINCS selection criteria, and the GTE Learning Activities Bank. A key activity that is helpful for the collaboration throughout the whole project is the monthly meetings with the NIFL and the other regional hubs. We are looking forward to the December nation-wide state level LINCS meeting in New Orleans.

VIII. Goals for the next quarter

  • Completely map the existing SLINCS Web site to the new LINCS templates
  • Co-work with NIFL to install and test the new searchable databases
  • Speed up the cataloging process for the new regional databases
  • Support and co-work with states in mapping their web sites to the new LINCS templates
  • Continue to work with states on completing mini-grants contracts
  • Get as many high-quality learning activity lesson plans as possible and put them on-line
  • Continue to add resources to the SLINCS and LAB sites
  • Continue to build partnerships throughout the region
  • Continue technical support for Consortium members as needed, and
  • Present LINCS at state and various other conferences

IX. Statistics:

A. Resources

Number of materials cataloged - 17

Number of Web-based materials produced and published . 21

B. Training

Number of broad-based presentations and training . 2 (COABE and TAACE)

Number of targeted training events . 5 (for LAB and new SLINCS staff)

Total people trained . 65

C. Technical assistance

Number of phone calls - 31

Number of emails - 168

Number of electronic discussion lists set up for field - 1 (total 14 lists)