Higher-education and research are synonymous: educating the next genius, and engineering the future. Higher-education and research are tightly knit, yet the two areas in universities are, in many campuses, leagues apart in how they create, consume, and distribute web applications. Research utilizing web applications, from custom PHP applications to content management system customizations and plugins, are commonly built as stand-alone, narrow applications gatewalled from the rest of the world. These one-off web projects dilute the community knowledge for our researchers, our students and faculty, and even ourselves.
Let’s consider a field of study ripe with web application development: educational technology. I’ll discuss the ‘state of the field’ for reusability and development design, and where we as web experts in higher-education can break the mold and engineer design principles and best-practices for everyone working with the web. It’s not just code – it’s building community, documentation, inclusive environments, and above all – collaborating. It’s the dare to share, from faculty to staff – assistants to vendors – project to project. I’ll discuss what makes an inclusive web environment for extending into research, and help craft a map to meeting this need.
Eric SembratWeb Manager
Eric Sembrat currently works at the Georgia Institute of Technology as a Web Manager for the College of Engineering. Eri spearhead campus- and college-level initiatives including a WordPress multisite installation and exploratory projects to expand and extend web for our campus users. One of Eric's areas of interest is leadership, and he strives to build community and direction throughout organizations - he serves on the leadership committee for the Georgia Tech Drupal Users Group, the steering committee for WPCampus, a track chair for the Drupal Association for DrupalCon North America. Eric is a Ph.D. student enrolled at Georgia State University, analyzing web development practices and design principles in instructional technology.