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Educational IT Jobs Thread, Presentation For Interiew in United Kingdom (UK) Specific Forums; Hi I have a job interview in just over a week for a network managers position but have to give ...
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    Presentation For Interiew

    Hi
    I have a job interview in just over a week for a network managers position but have to give a 10 min presentation on "How would an inefficient network impact on the curriculum" has any one any ideas I am a sound technical guy but what they are asking is like a teachers interview I was expecting a technical test.


    Again can anyone start me off with some pointers?
    Last edited by modcoms; 27th October 2008 at 12:56 PM.

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    Sounds as though they are trying to make sure you have sound "skills" outside of your technical remit; I was asked similar at interview.

    I think it's important that you show what an "efficient" network would allow in terms of teaching and learning (useful phrase); good results, well motivated attitude towards ICT in the world, an understanding of how ICT is in everything we do both in cross curricular subjects and indeed in the "real world".

    From there, showing the inefficient side would be easier imo.

    I'm not very creative at this time of the morning on a Sunday but I'm sure some of the others will have some better ideas for you.

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    tmcd35's Avatar
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    I was asked a similar question when I went for a NM interview.

    I tried to express the idea that everything we do ultimately is towards the kids learning experience. Whatever happens the kids ability and quality of learning must come first.

    They seemed to like that answer - I got the job

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    Quote Originally Posted by modcoms View Post
    Hi
    I have a job interview in just over a week for a network managers possition but have to give a 10 min presentation on "How would an inefficient network impact on the curriculum" has any one any ideas I am a sound technical guy but what they are asking is like a teacher's interview I was expecting a technical test.


    again can any one start me off with some pointers
    @tmcd35's advice is good. It's important that you show that you recognise that your job is to provide systems which support teaching and learning - you're not just there to provide a good network which no-one uses.

    A couple of simple examples:

    Microsoft regularly release software updates which have to be deployed to all machines. Pushing them out at 9am would make it difficult to start work in the morning but you can make sure that they go out (eg) overnight.

    Many users save work on their desktop - an inefficient network makes this a poor location because all the files have to be copied to/from the central folder location at logoff/on but it's possible for you to use folder redirection so that that doesn't happpen and users can work in a way they find comfortable.

    Basically, you're trying to think of things which you know how to do and then explaining why you do them. This isn't just true in schools - it should be the case anywhere IT is used - but there will be differences in an educational environment about some of the things you allow or don't allow.

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    Andrew_C's Avatar
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    Big bug-bear here is log-on times. In a normal office, taking 5 mins for everyone to log-on at 9am is fine, you make a cup of tea and then are free to work until 5pm when you log-off.

    In a school 5 mins "wasted" out of each of seven lessons a day is unacceptable.

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    Just got some bullet points together have a look and let me know

    Teaching and Learning
    Time wasted at the start and end of every session logging on and off.
    Resources are unavailable to both teacher and student.
    Files not stored in one common location
    “ONE SERVER FOR ALL TASKS”
    Loss of data
    Printing

    Teachers and Staff


    Unable to access Sims (latency)
    Access to children's work
    Printing
    Work form home


    just for a start

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    Andrew_C's Avatar
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    Maintaining order in your data server so things can actually be found when needed, (and letting people know what IS in there.)

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    steve's Avatar
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    I'd start by defining what you understand by a network.

    In this situation, I'm assuming the school is using it in the wider context - computers, software, network infrastructure (switches / routers), servers, internet connection, printers, etc.

    You might also want to include the users as part of the network and describe training as a vital part - a well trained user can deal with problems and minimise the effects on teaching and learning.

    Describe inefficiencies of the physical components of the network in relation to teaching and learning (curriculum).

    What has already been mentioned is ideal, plus perhaps some points on how you would see the bigger picture - forward planning the replacement and upgrade of the network (in consultation with stakeholders) while minimising downtime.

    I'd also mention critical usage - attendance, exams and census.

    A few guidelines on the actual presentation:

    Stick to the time limit, take questions at the end, this will stop you over running.
    Be prepared - have printouts just in case.
    No bells and whistles - they are annoying and can go wrong.
    For a 10 min presentation try to stick to 10 content slides.
    Slides should be bullet points / diagrams only - no essays.
    Have notes and don't be afraid to use them.

    Good luck

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    joe90bass's Avatar
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    All good suggestions! One thing I thought of is that if things do go wrong at the start of a lesson, pupils soon lose interest and the teachers have a tough job getting them back on task! A good efficient network would help prevent this.

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    Basically- everything that has been said already...

    The point about login times is big- the difference between how a school network and an office is used is quite significant. In addition to the short periods (which mean quick fixes to problems are needed to not destroy an entire lesson) it's also about how it's used. With us, relatively no activity during lesson but hammered at the start and finish with log in/out. Means the network needs to be built to stand up to these times.

    At the moment talking about failover seems popular too. If one box dies having another take over automatically. Definitely achievable when you're looking at virtualisation.

    Backups, & a quick and easy way to recover data...

    Teaching and Learning is a very good phrase... Maybe think about open access- students & staff bringing devices in & just being able to work without a huge amount of time spent getting permission from IT. Would be interesting to have a bit of knowledge of the current setup where you're interviewing for this kind of thing. Having an idea of the current problems is a very good way to become popular.

    The efficiency question is also about staffing. How would you deal with/monitor ICT issues? Quick responses, useful feedback to staff, etc, etc.

    Think about future developments too- what students experience in school should be as close as possible a replication to systems they would experience outside when they get to the 'real world'.

    Tim

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    Other key words and phrases to include are ...

    Transferable skills (taking one skill set learnt in a subject or situation and being able to apply it other subjects)
    Change management (Some networks are inefficient because they are *managed* inefficiently ... references to Becta's FITS are good here)
    IT Strategy must be part of the school development plan as the needs of the school define the requirements for IT provision and direction.

    Lots of other buzz words you can include about VLEs if they come up, but you might want to consider mentioning recent changes in data protection guidance (showing you are up to date with things coming out of Govt agencies), the various targets for online learning spaces and online reporting, the latest pilot for home access, and then also be able to explain new technologies to make things more efficient and financially viable such as thin client, terminal services, virtualisation, the green agenda (low power classrooms) ...

    Perhaps any members that have recently had interviews could give example questions they were asked?

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    The other thing I would say is to keep it consice - 10 mins goes very quickly!

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    Our logon times are quite short but I put forward a recommendation that teachers got the kids to logon first, open the application they would be using and then gather round the IWB to be told what they would be doing. One ICT Suite is next door to my office so I try and get in and resolve any problems before the kids start their work. That saves a bit of time and goes down well with the staff.

    Also, I know it was a typo but check your spelling.

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    Is this a new position or did the last person leave? If you know a little about the history of the place it may give you an idea as to what the school is looking for. It could be that they are looking for someone who understands that the network is there for a teaching and learning reason as they had a bad experience with the last NM.

    As for advice, the same as what everyone else has already said. Although 1 point I always try to mention is to create a network that is easy to use. A basic computer setup which is easy to navigate regardless of user skill level *should* allow users (particularly teachers) to gain confidence using computers. As GD has said, pupils should be taught transferable skills, it is up to IT support to provide them with the facilities to be able to do this.

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    Hi,

    Did you get the job?

    Gareth

    Quote Originally Posted by modcoms View Post
    Hi
    I have a job interview in just over a week for a network managers position but have to give a 10 min presentation on "How would an inefficient network impact on the curriculum" has any one any ideas I am a sound technical guy but what they are asking is like a teachers interview I was expecting a technical test.


    Again can anyone start me off with some pointers?



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