LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (April 24, 2013)--Some UALR students will enhance their learning next fall, not by purchasing more textbooks, but with the help of a Google Chromebook.
All students enrolled in UALR's Information Technology (IT) undergraduate minor or professional certificate program will receive the portable computers, according to Information Technology Program Coordinator Thomas Wallace.
"It's the perfect way to reinforce all the information the students will learn," Wallace explained. "The Chromebooks will enrich their experience and provide a consistent platform for the variety of projects and activities assigned. It's a great equalizer."
Enhanced technical and communication skills are a prerequisite for 21st-century industries and businesses, according to Wallace, who said the goal is for all students to become equipped with well-rounded skill sets organizations say they value most.
"What we teach people is how to solve problems with technology, empowering them to move beyond just basic proficiency," he said. "But we also integrate that knowledge with an essential set of soft skills that carry over into the corporate world."
Wallace said that among the knowledge-based skills students learn are advanced topics in web-based publishing, cloud-based technology, as well as Microsoft Excel and Access. They also learn soft skills such as interview and time-management techniques and improved listening skills.
The cross-disciplinary program was created with input from central Arkansas companies, and includes multiple faculty members who collaborate and team-teach each class, according to Wallace.
"When you see someone make that transition and walk away with the perfect blend of tech savvy and business soft skills, it's a heartening thing to watch," Wallace concluded.
The IT program is part of the George W. Donaghey College of Engineering and Information Technology. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 501-569-8743.
Information can also be found at ualr.edu/informationtechnology.