A Day In the Life of a Vice Provost for Digital Learning

A master class in using Twitter by UCF’s Tom Cavanagh and team.

August 15, 2018

What happens when your partner, or your kids, are asked to explain your job?

Better yet, if you work in digital learning, ask your partner what they think you do all day long on campus.

The results are always interesting.

Digital learning higher education jobs are mostly about relationships. There are lots of conversations, e-mails, consultations. As a digital learning person goes on in their career, the percentage of time spent in conversation increases.  (At least in my case).  This makes our days more difficult to describe, and our partners (and kids) knowledge about what we do all day grows ever more hazy.

Thankfully, there is Dr. Tom Cavanagh, Vice Provost for Digital Learning at University of Central Florida, and Twitter.

Last week. Tom and his Division of Digital Learning team at the University of Central Florida, did a great thing.  They followed Tom around to see what he did all day, took pictures, and shared them with the world.

As a sociologist, I’m always curious about how work works. Tom’s long day of connecting, talking, presenting, and listening mirrored what the work is really about.

I ended up watching Tom’s day in somewhat real time on Twitter that August 6th. Spending time on Twitter is something I rarely do.  Twitter is sort of a last resort of scrolling for me.  The place I turn when I don’t have the energy to read an article.  The day-in-the-life of a Vice Provost for Digital Learning actually had me sort of riveted.  I wanted to see what Tom was going to do next.

So much of the work of alt-acs and digital learning people is invisible. We mostly work to make our partners successful.  I’d love to see more examples such as what Tom and his UCF team did to make how we do our work more transparent.

What is a typical day for you like?


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