Student Voice in Practice: Burlington High School Help Desk

The Burlington High School (BHS) Help Desk is the heart of the school’s Student Technology Innovation and Integration course. The semester-long course open to students in grades 10-12, provides a hands-on study of technology integration in an educational context. Students are required to assess technology problems submitted by fellow students and teachers and define the best approach to solving the problem. Students share their knowledge through app reviews, blog entries, video screencasts, and presentations. Students also complete several larger projects throughout the year, including an Individualized Learning Endeavor. They are required to keep a blog documenting their work.

The program’s website includes a wealth of tips to support the expansion of technology use and troubleshoot common problems with equipment, applications, and tools that students and educators use frequently. These student-written resources include:

  • Tech support tips for using Google Apps for Education (GAFE) including Google Docs, Google Classroom, and Chrome Extensions,
  • Reviews and tutorials of useful apps.
  • Tips for students, especially related to iPad use.
  • Tips for teachers related to use of Dropbox and digital storytelling.

section for parents features links to resources on supporting your child’s use of digital technology in a safe and responsible way. The site also houses Help Desk Live, a videocast featuring helpdesk students interviewing experts on exciting technology issues, like open education resources (OERs) and the importance of digital citizenship. A recent episode features an interview with BHS staff and student help desk members providing more details on the creation of the helpdesk program.

Any students or teacher will find many tips and links to resources that can support technology integration from this website. Parents can also find links to useful resources. Administrators and technology leaders from any school might use this site to research and consider launching a similar initiative. In addition, documents from the program, such as applications, syllabus, and description of assigned projects are all available for review.

Source Organization: Burlington High School

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