ULM Associate Professor of Instructional Technology Dr. Michael Beutner organized the event. "As far as I know, there is no other state-wide online competition like this in the United States. It's unique to Louisiana."
The event is held online using ULM's Learning Management System (LMS) during regular school hours. Students compete in their own high school computer labs across the state of Louisiana, without travel.
The website for the contest states, "The main purpose of this competition is to demonstrate how our students can use technology creatively, in a team, for productive life-long learning."
For four hours, competing high school teams will respond to various challenges and expectations: searching the Internet for reliable information and citing sources, writing clear and grammatically correct sentences, completing challenging tasks, downloading and uploading files, and working together effectively as a team. Students will use their skills and talents with assigned technology projects.
Awards for Overall State Team Ranking will include first, second, third, fourth and fifth place teams. Each winning team will receive a trophy with the names of all team members laser-etched in black granite honoring the efforts of the school. Technology team coaches will receive complimentary USB flash drives.
Judges will include faculty, staff, and graduate students from ULM. Last year, over 20 judges participated. These highly-qualified individuals will evaluate the competing teams based on the quality of content, design, and layout using a common rubric.
When approached about his involvement in the contest, Beutner insisted, "Dr. Eric Pani, vice president for academic affairs at ULM, deserves a great deal of credit that this competition exists because he supported the project. Over the years, nearly 4,000 high school students have competed from approximately 100 high schools, with very favorable evaluations of the event."
Beutner also expressed his appreciation to CenturyLink, which has provided support for this event.
For more information, please visit www.ulm.edu/techchallenge/