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NTAE Program Spotlight: Digital Technology in Extension Education ePublication


As we get closer to kicking off a new year of our NTAE Accelerator program, we will catch up with past program teams to share their project stories and outcomes! This week's program spotlight features Dr. Rose Hayden-Smith, the Extension Foundation's 2020 Fellow for Technology in Extension. During Rose's fellowship, she created the first version of the Using Digital Technology in Extension Education ePublication, which provides a digital platform for aggregating content, tools, and engagement and is available to all professionals in Cooperative Extension.

We spoke with Rose about this timely, informative project. Read her thoughts on how it came to be and how it has evolved since the publication's release almost a year later!
"I curated the content for this project as the impacts of the pandemic were beginning to be felt. Many Extension colleagues were seeking information about how to use digital technologies to connect with those they serve. The content was based on a survey that indicated that people were looking for practical, how-to information, so I made sure to include lots of practical advice, how-to, and case studies. The ePublication also includes three "thought" pieces about technology and Extension work. It was terrific how many of my Extension colleagues pitched in and contributed such excellent pieces. Social media and digital technologies are critical for Extension, and we have much expertise across the system.
The ways the project has evolved are interesting. I enlisted several Extension colleagues to help me develop and deliver a series of webinars and social cafes to provide practical tutorials about how to use social technologies. These online webinars took on a life of their own, and we covered a range of topics. After this series, Aaron Weibe set up a subgroup on Connect Extension called Technology for Extension Education (TEE), which now has a couple of thousand members. We continue to curate content about digital technology for that subgroup and connect professionals to new digital tools and skills. I hope we will see more ePubs devoted to this topic, and I also hope that people will revisit this ePub now that the acute crisis is over."

Thanks to Dr. Rose Hayden Smith and all her contributors- Greg Aronoff, John Buzzard, David J. Krause, Dr. Mark Lubell, Dr. Lindsey Shirley, Dan Macon, Aaron Weibe, ChaNaΓ¨ Bradley, Cynthia Kintigh,  Liz Sizensky, and Victor Villegas for this valuable resource!

Visit the ePublication, join the Technology for Extension Education (TEE) subgroup, watch the webinars and social cafes, and learn about other NTAE projects!

Look out for more posts spotlighting our great past projects and teams!

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This website is supported in part by New Technologies for Ag Extension (funding opportunity no. USDA-NIFA-OP-010186), grant no. 2023-41595-41325 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the Extension Foundation. For more information, please visit You can view the terms of use at

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