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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Distance Educational Tools

As Extension begins to develop educational program delivery strategies that include distance education, one of the most challenging aspects is to establish a culture among County Extension Agents to integrate this educational program delivery strategy into their ongoing programming.

As Extension faces challenges, distance education becomes of up most importance to the effectiveness and the accessibility to Extension programs.

As we launch the Texas AgriLife Extension Service Distance Education Initiative individuals want to talk about what needs to be developed, when in reality agents already have a number of strategies/tools  available that are not being adequately utilized now.  During the course of the next couple of weeks we will be featuring some excellent examples of Distance Educational strategies that agents can utilize now in the delivery of programs to clientele.

Some examples are:  Family and Consumer Science agents have embraced distance learning by providing the leadership in developing Distance Educational Tools to add value to their traditional program delivery.  The Dinner Tonight program provides clientele with a tasty, healthy, and cost effective recipes that can be quickly prepared.

The web site to see one of the East Region’s County Extension Agents demonstrate a recipe click on the following link:
http://healthyliving.tamu.edu
Also, a blog will be utilized to provide clientele with information regarding preparing nutritious meals. The blog can be reviewed by clicking on the following link:
http://nutritionalrecipes.blogspot.com/

Another one of the strategies that is easy to accomplish is for County Extension Agents to utilize web sites that can be effectively utilized to add value to traditional program delivery methods.  One of these innovative examples is a websites designed to address issues facing the beef cattle industry entitled  Cow Sense U.  The following is a link to view this site: http://www.cowsenseu.org/.

Yet another, of these innovative examples is a websites designed to address issues facing the beef cattle industry entitled  Ranch TV.  The following is a link to view this site: http://ranchtv.org/.

An innovative example of utilizing technology in District 11 as part of  this District’s Distance Education Initiative includes the following presentation by Victoria County Agent Sam Womble .
http://coastalbend.tamu.edu/Edvideos/Victoria.htm

Another is the Texas 4-H Livestock website.. Through your promotion and support, it has the potential to be one of the most utilized online resources Texas AgriLife Extension Service has to offer.   The following is a link to view this site:
http://agrilife.tamu.edu/livestock101/

Numerous agents and specialists have utilized weblogs or blogs to interact with clientele. Listed below are just a few examples of how Extension educators with Texas AgriLife Extension Service is utilizing weblogs or blogs;
http://wild-wonderings.blogspot.com/2011/02/feral-hog-questions-and-answers.html
http://cbagbriefs.blogspot.com/2010/11/cotton-variety-test-results-posted.html
http://agrilife.org/etg/2011/02/18/mid-february-marks-rose-pruning-season/
http://cbagbriefs.blogspot.com/

Soon we will migrate to new county web pages that can be better utilized by you in providing distance education. 

Distance Education Survey:Your participation in this survey is crucial in implementing our Distance educational initiative. This is your reminder that it is an expectation that every District 11  agent complete this survey before Monday, February 28, 2011.
You  may complete  this survey by clicking on the link below;
http://tamuag.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_6eSUKOo9Mv29sJ6

Partial Cost Recovery:

By the end of the week District 11 will have had, three trainings and most of our agents will have been provided information on implementing our new initiative on March 1st.  I appreciate the attitudes that you all have had in being as positive toward embracing our new way of doing business.  Please remember to go to our web site: http://ExtensionCostRecovery.tamu.edu for all the necessary materials and guild lines. The website has recently been updated with more power points in assisting to inform your committees and support staff on cash management procedures. Those agents that have not made the trainings due to conflicts will have an opportunity to participate in a teleconference soon, more details to come. 

4-H News:
All district Roundup contest information has been posted on the District 11 4-H website.
http://d114-h.tamu.edu/events-and-contests/roundup/

Our highly successful Coastal Bend Classic needs to be evaluated by our agents, a meeting on Monday February 28th, starting at 1:00 pm in the Jackson County Demonstration kitchen has been scheduled.  For those of you that can not make the face to face meeting, you can call into a  conference call. I will send out the phone number and code Monday Morning.