ERIC Number: EJ846556
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Reference Count: 0
Advice for an IT Advisory Committee
Pritchard, William H.
EDUCAUSE Quarterly, v28 n1 p52-53 2005
Advisory committees can be valuable to any part of the IT organization. The insights one can derive from such groups about perceptions of service levels and beliefs (or myths) about technology, as well as the interchange of communication between technical staff and users, can be helpful. But to derive the maximum value from advisory committees, keep several key points in mind. First, note that advisory committees should not be confused with "project teams" and "work groups," whose mission is quite different. Project teams or work groups often have a specific start and end time, with clearly stated objectives. The membership of these groups tends to consist primarily of IT staff, with a few campus members who serve as functional advisors. On the other hand, advisory committees tend to have a longer life span, possibly lasting for many years, and a diverse membership consisting primarily of campus representatives (faculty, staff, and managers) and only a few IT employees. The committee may be institution-wide in scope or narrowly limited to certain departments or disciplines. Its primary goal should be to provide guidelines and policy on matters related to the use and implementation of technology in a specific functional area (discipline, department, college, university), not to provide technical specifications or requirements. Often such committees can become highly political and difficult to manage if allowed to evolve without appropriate guidance and good communication. The tips discussed in this article are intended as guidelines to help one use advisory committees effectively at his/her institution.
Descriptors: Advisory Committees, Guidelines, Information Technology, Perception, Higher Education, College Faculty
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
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