The Field Internship Program is designed to provide students with professional field experience in chosen career areas. Students have the opportunity to explore diverse opportunities in the profession throughout the New York metropolitan area. They learn through supervised participation in instructional technology, instructional design and production, and a wide range of other professional positions and practices.
The faculty view internships as essential complements of academic course work, particularly for students who may not have yet had professional work experience. Internships afford students the opportunity to apply and refine what they are learning in their course work, under the supervision of professionals in professional settings. This experience assists students in further academic and career planning and fosters professional development.
More than one hundred organizations in the Greater Metropolitan Area host interns from the ECT Program. These organizations and the work they engage in parallel the various areas in which students have been immersed throughout their graduate work. Settings include educational, cultural, broadcast, communications, publishing, government and public service, non-profit, advocacy, health and social services, corporate training, and media design, and education media research and development organizations.
Students in our programs may begin doing an internship in their second semester in the program and may do a maximum of two internships while matriculated. Students must register for Media Practicum: Field Internships (EDCT-GE 2197), which is offered fall, spring, and summer. This couse offers 3 graduate credits, which may be used to fulfill degree requirements, and for which interns must spend 180 hours in the field (approximately 12 hours for 15 weeks, though this may be adjusted).
While students wishing to do an internship are matriculated in our programs, they must work with the Internship Coordinator and follow the procedures established for the internship placement process. From matriculation to graduation, students may not do internship independent of the program on a non-credit basis.
The internship placement process begins approximately six weeks prior to the semester in which a student plans to do an internship. It begins with a notification from the Internship Coordinator to all students in the program, who are then invited to begin the placement process.
Following are some examples of ECT internship placements over the last several years: New Visions in Media & Education; E-Line Media; American Museum of Natural History; Sesame Workshop; Kognito Interactive, BrainPOP; Taskstream; PBS/In the Mix; Classroom, Inc.; Oxford University Press; Center for Children and Technology (EDC).
During my time at Oxford University Press, I worked in English Language Teaching (ELT) department. I was assisting Assistant Media Producer, Media Production Assistant, Assistant Media Producer and Associate Media Producer with their projects. I did research on eBooks, eReaders and tablets. It was a research based on the use of iPads and other tablets in schools for educational purpose. I learned a lot working as an intern in professional environment. I had a chance to practically implement the theoretical knowledge that I gained during my classes in Educational Technology and Cognitive Science. I also learnt about educational apps and eBooks and the challenges while creating and developing educational content for the K-12.
My internship at the American Museum of Natural History in New York was a great, empowering experience. Having worked for more than 10 years in media for children it was hard to find an internship program where I could have a true sense of self-development. I was looking for a hands-on experience a place where I could learn something new that could use in the future. While working in the Educational Department and Digital Initiatives for the Youth, I have learned a lot about the use of 3D printers in museums and science. I have also learned a lot about the use of digital tools for youth education. It has been a real training experience and I'm glad I chose it!
At Sesame Workshop products from video games, to episode segments, to printable resources go through a rigorous testing cycle to ensure they meet the highest quality standards and are both effective and entertaining. This cycle has come to be known as the Sesame Research Model and has been the foundation of Sesame Workshop’s success. As an intern with the Sesame Research division I got to take part in this process. I was responsible for assisting with onsite and offsite testing of Sesame products with children, parents and teachers; post-test data entry and contributing to discussions around iterations of developing products. As an intern with the Sesame Learning group, I similarly got to participate in the development of tablet based curriculum for use in classrooms. My experience included helping the production crew on photo and video shoots, and collecting and synthesizing cognitive research in support of the curriculum. My time at Sesame Workshop gave me a real-world understanding of digital media design principles and research. I'm excited for the opportunity to continue working with Sesame Workshop as a freelancer.
My internship with BrainPOP involved working with two digital media production teams, the Educators and the GameUp division. I was fortunate to work directly with instructional designers, educators, game developers and executive producers where I was able to apply all that I have learned thus far from my graduate studies.
I worked on creating blog posts, lesson plans, and webinars for the Educators team. This work also included some UX input into the redesigned Educator Community website. On the GameUp team, my main task was to vet third party educational games for the K-3 crowd in all subject areas. In doing this I came to understand just how challenging it is to find high quality educational games that are also FUN. And, not fun to me, but fun for 5 to 10 year old kids. This involved a lot of playtesting with kids, which I found extremely insightful. It also involved a lot of reflection and professional discussion about what makes a good game and why.
In combination with my BrainPOP internship this semester I took Professor Jan Plass’s Research on Games and Simulation class. I don’t think I could have had a more perfect combination of experiences. What I read and studied in his class aligned precisely with what I was experiencing “in the field”. My professional world and academic worlds were in sync. Hearing Prof. Plass say “playtest early and often”, could not have resonated with me more than it did to me at this time.
The work environment at BrainPOP is open and collaborative. My supervisors, beyond being wonderful people, were generous in sharing their professional experiences and offering guidance. I found this internship to be invaluable and rewarding. I would recommend pursuing this opportunity to any of my colleagues looking for truly meaningful internship work.
Chava Alexandra Wernick
During my internship at E-Line Media, I worked under Katya, the Learning Content Producer, on Gamestar Mechanic. One of the goals for Gamestar was to fully convert it into a blended learning tool that teachers across the country could implement into their lessons. I researched blended learning models and Common Core State Standards and I presented my findings, along with Katya, to the heads of E-Line. I learned hands-on what educational technology research entails, I had practice in writing lesson plans and summing up research and requirements for both the user and the developer, and I even got to go with Katya to lesson she gave to teachers on how to use Gamestar Mechanic. The internship was a real hands-on, interactive learning experience, which is, according to my DMDL classes, one of the best ways to learn. I gained a lot of insight into EVERYTHING that goes into creating, developing, and producing successful educational media. My supervisor was amazing – she showed me what to do and how to do it and could always answer the "why are we doing this" when I wanted to know. I definitely will take what I've learned at E-Line - especially the need to test and retest and communicate - and apply it to my thesis project and my last semester of school, and carry that and everything else with me as I move forward into the future.
Chava Alexandra Wernick
As the Assistant Technology Specialist at the West End Day School, I got to work with students and teachers as they used technology in education. I worked under an amazing supervisor, the technology specialist and computer teacher, and created supplements to lesson plans, Web-Quests, computer activities to supplement lessons, and SMARTBoard activities. I also helped to troubleshoot computers and help with other technology-related tasks. I saw how technology and its interactivity can be an excellent teaching tool when coupled with a good teacher, and I saw how technology can be incredibly frustrating to both teacher and student when it doesn’t work right or when something unexpected happens. During my time at WEDS, I had to search the Internet for school-appropriate material, such as games and videos and text, for the Web-Quests older students would do and for the post-SMARTBoard lessons the younger students needed. I also used basic tools, such as MS Paint and Photoshop to create exciting interactive SMARTBoard activities for the younger kids, such as a penguin life-cycle puzzle and a how-do-you-recycle guessing game. I saw what was out there and learned what is needed and decided what it is that I want to do. Seeing Educational Media and Technology from the user’s perspective was eye-opening and has definitely helped in my coursework and to prepare me for real-work.
I did my internship at Oxford University Press (OUP). OUP is one of the oldest and largest educational publishing companies in the world. I worked for the English Language Teaching (ELT) Media Production Team. I was in charge of creating, researching and implementing educational text books, interactive text books, picture dictionaries and learning content solutions for students and educators. This internship provided me with some first hand real world exposure inside the educational publishing industry. The work experience and research I did at OUP provided me with the necessary tools to better understand Educational Technology (ECT), Cognitive Science, Apps and eBooks and the complexities behind creating and developing cross platform educational content for the K-12 English Language Learner (ELL).
Greg Scott Kinsey
I feel very fortunate to get involved in producing language-learning materials with the Digital Media Group in the department of American English Language Teaching at Oxford University Press. During the internship, I took responsibilities of checking for bugs in media files and media products in platforms of learning management systems, iTools, Apps for iPhone and iPad, digital dictionaries, collating bug reports, converting media files wherever needed and providing raw video materials for the marketing department. It was a great chance to play the roles of both a designer and a user to evaluate and experience the design and practice articulating thoughts regarding user interface and user experience design of the products. It was a valuable and essential experience to gain a deeper understanding of the design principles I learned in other DMDL courses.
Bumble and Bumble, a subsidiary of Estee Lauder companies, operates hair salons across the country along with a premier product line. I interned at the corporate university of Bumble and Bumble, which comprises a Business School and a Design School. Bb. University educates salon owners and hairstylists across the country the art and technique to run a successful salon through 3-4 day intensive programs.
As an Instructional Design intern, I was required to come up with a two-way eLearning model for continuing/remote education and also propose potential digital media inclusions that will help enhance learner engagement at Bumble University. During the course of the internship, I set up a WebEx-based framework on iPads for remote network education and as a brainstorming platform for Bumble educators, created recorded walkthroughs for application-based training, set up a Facebook space for continued learner communication, and also proposed a design for a mobile app for both education and product sales.
I thoroughly enjoyed the internship with this wide range of project work. I got to work with some really creative people, and my time at Bumble turned out to be a steep learning curve for my design aptitude and skills for idea translation.
I anchored my professional interest in game-based learning after completing an internship with E-Line Media in Midtown Manhattan, New York. I was responsible for researching possible game content developers and reported to Carolina Torres, the Producer for “The Jordan Project”. E-Line is planning to launch this game-based learning platform to positively impact the lives of youth in Jordan by creating a game that enhances existing youth-focused USAID and local aligned programs through a compelling combination of game objectives, online micro-engagement content and real world volunteer opportunities. This internship position required a high-level attention to detail, and a willingness to work with an iterative intention. My mentor encouraged project-management excellence, with an intensive research approach. In addition to developing research experience, I learned a great deal about games for learning as a serious business model. Through my experience at E-Line, I developed an understanding of the complexities associated with game production. I found this opportunity to be challenging, interesting, collaborative and extremely rewarding.
Educational Video Center
EVC is a non-profit youth media organization, in Midtown Manhattan, that teaches high school students from underserved communities across New York City. The mission is to teach documentary video as a means to develop the artistic, critical literacy and career skills of young people. During this internship I co-produced a youth-directed documentary for Educational Video Center that premiered at the Time Warner Center in New York City. "A Clouded View" probed why, every day, thousands of teens light up their first cigarette, what addiction means for them and their families and how they can kick this habit. This internship position required an intention to foster student leadership and to guide students during field research, situated “B-rolls” and location shoots that examines an issue of immediate relevance in their lives. This co-teaching position provided a real opportunity to integrate the theoretical tools from my Narrative/Media Learning and Digital Ethnography courses.
During my internship at the New-York Historical Society I was assigned to two projects in the museum's Education Department. The new DiMenna Children's History Museum was scheduled to open on November 11, 2011 and I was asked to evaluate and test the interactive games and informational displays that were going to be integrated into the children museum's themed pavilions. I worked through three stages of evaluation: using design proposal documents I focused on basic interface design elements; pilot testing with a local school; and post-implementation surveys, filming and testing. These activities resulted in interface design modification recommendations to the Education staff and software design firm. In conjunction with this project I developed a rubric for serious game evaluation that the Education Department could apply to future projects. My second assignment was the design and implementation of a "Family Stories" workshop series. The workshop series was offered three times over the course of the Thanksgiving Weekend 2011. The framework of the workshop included a storyteller recounting a personal experience, an introduction to story structure, a family storyboarding and scriptwriting activity, the filming and screening of family stories.
I interned at Lucky Duck Productions, an award-winning television production company well-known for producing children's programming, prime time specials, documentaries, and short series for broadcast and cable television networks. My internship experience at LDP was interesting, exciting, and rewarding. I was intrigued by the exposure to the rigorous tasks involved in creating broadcast video productions, in each phase, pre-production, production, and post-production. I had the opportunity to attend a yearly meeting pitching new show concept ideas, with highly skilled staffs members and the owners, Linda Ellerbee and Rolfe Tessem. Ultimately, the internship experience provided valuable assets to contribute to my academic and career goals as an educational media producer for multi-media platforms.
During my time at Oxford University Press (OUP), I had the opportunity to work on the creation of digital products for the American English Language Teaching division. I was primarily involved in asset preparation and quality assurance testing for the Online Practice platform for primary titles "Everybody Up,", "Let's Go," and "English Time." I also assisted in the production of the "Stars iTools" platform, a classroom presentation tool for teachers that now accompanies a majority of OUP's textbook titles. Additionally, I conducted research on social networks for learning and speech recognition vendors, indicating the more innovative domain OUP wanted to move with their digital products. Throughout my time at OUP, I often revisited the design principles I learned in Cognitive Science 1 and Interactive Design to inform the input I gave to the digital media team.
Classroom, Inc.'s mission is to create innovative and engaging curriculum that helps students develop both academic and 21st century skills for success in both school and the real-world. This is done mainly through the development of simulations and, currently, simulation games in which the user takes on a real-world position in the workplace and learns by doing. As an intern, I worked on both "The Finance Center" and "The Sports Network" programs. In "The Finance Center," I worked on the re-design of the pre- and post-assessments for Episode 3: "Coming Up Short," in which students learn to balance a budget. Through data analysis and mainly using cognitive science theories I learned in the DMDL program, I was able to improve the design for more efficient use and understanding of the assessment. The second project, which is currently still in progress, allowed me to work on the design and development of taking "The Sports Network" (TSN) simulation template and creating a simulation game that incorporates the new ELA Common Core Standards. During this process, I was able to participate in the development of a learning game through a partnership with Filament. Much of this project involved drawing on knowledge and experience learned through both my design and game development courses. I am excited to have to opportunity to continue through my internship in order to work on the TSN project through its completion.
I obtained highly rewarding internship experience at Global Action on Aging, an NGO with special consultative status with the United Nations. During the internship, as a videographer, I was asked to work on several video-production projects, independently, from video taping to editing and publishing. These included and interview series of "Interns' Voices" and "Older People Human Right's Abuses." In addition, as a Chinese speaker, I was responsible for finding Chinese articles regarding aging issues, writing about and publishing them on the GAA website. Moreover, I got chance to attend several UN meetings and international events, where I witnessed the contributions of numerous organizations to UN conventions.
Taskstream is a company that provides education management tools and services to facilitate the demonstration of learning achievement in learning networks, predominantly for K-12 schools. I was recruited as an intern to create a framework for an orientation program that educates new employees on the company’s functions and most current solutions, with minimal involvement of experienced managers who were previously conducting this training. I was required to conduct a needs assessment to determine the scope and goals of this solution, and to build a prototype. After turning in a initial report with my findings from manager interviews and the company’s current knowledge repository, we decided to use the company’s proprietary solution itself to design and deliver this training. By the end of the summer, we had a working framework, beyond the prototype, that used training rubrics, assessments and feedback cycles, which was almost stand-alone. Designing a learning environment supported by good instruction design principles, while also accommodating business requirements and technical limitations, was a challenging and interesting experience—one of my first exposures to a condition that I will encounter throughout my career in instruction design.
Hunter College Elementary School is a laboratory school chartered by the City University of New York (CUNY) and administered by Hunter College. The school's principle aim is to develop children that display "superior cognitive ability". As an educational technology student teacher, my main responsibilities included working with teachers in finding how to effectively incorporate more technology into their lessons, as well as the creation of lesson plans and instructional materials to support students as they took on multimedia assignments embedded in their curriculum. It provided the right combination of interpersonal communication and collaboration I was searching for; not only was I working in the administrative level in designing technology-based learning environments, I also got to lead lessons as well as provide students with direct one-on-one support in the mastering of digital literacy skills. Thus, I was able to establish a connection with the students, teachers, and administrators of HCES making me feel like a valuable part of the Hunter community.
I worked in the position of Jr. Instructional Designer as part of my internship at Kognito Interactive, where I helped build a virtual role-play simulation that will help Emergency Department staff identify patients who are at risk for suicide ideation. What interests me the most about what I did at Kognito is that I was able to blend learning with storytelling, both of which I am extremely passionate about. I fulfilled several responsibilities while working on this project, including research, user testing, QA, sound editing, project coordination, gathering feedback from subject matter experts and brainstorming script ideas. This internship continues to be a valuable and challenging learning experience. I am in my second semester as an intern and am constantly improving as a budding professional in my field.
I had the great privilege of interning at ESI Design, an internationally recognized leader in experience design and interactive environments. I worked as part of the creative team on the JFK50.org website. The site celebrates the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy's inauguration by offering young people an invitation to participate in his legacy through seven core themes: public service, science and innovation, civil rights, domestic affairs, arts, foreign policy and diplomacy and the environment. Tasks included script editing, research and content development, asset management, licensing, and quality assurance testing. I continued my work with the company after the internship through the launch of the site. JFK50.org went on to win the 2011 AAM's Gold Muse Award in Education and Outreach.
As an intern at International Education and Resource Network USA (iEARN-USA), I was responsible for two main projects. The first was to re-design a "Getting Started" guide for teachers new to iEARN projects. In creating this guide, I surveyed teachers, asked for their feedback, drew on current iEARN multimedia resources, and developed new iEARN content to be used in their website guide. I created the page in HTML and soon it was up and running. The second project, and the bigger one, was to create a resource page for the US Department of Education website, under the title "The Teacher's Guide to International Collaboration using Technology." This project involved collecting educational resources from around the world, talking to educators worldwide, and vetting tools for their use in internationally collaborative projects. It involved research on project-based learning and global education initiatives, and working with educators to choose digital tools for uses such as video conferencing, video production, publishing, and other collaborative learning endeavors. The highlight of my internship was all the contacts and connections I made through my research. Educators are generally very open and willing to share, and collaborating with them renewed my optimism for global education initiatives that work to dispel stereotypes and foster peace and responsible citizenship. I'm pleased also to report that iEARN asked me to stay on past the duration of my internship to continue working on the US Department of Education project to see the it through to its completion and launch.
My internship experience at E-line Media was rewarding, inspiring, and fun. I spent much of my internship working on a video game called Gamestar Mechanic that teaches kids systems thinking through game design. I ran numerous focus groups with kids, worked on promotional material intended for teachers, and wrote a short curriculum to be used in conjunction with the game in classrooms, after school programs, and camps. The theories I have been studying in my courses applied directly to my work at E-line, especially those regarding cognitive science. I am thrilled to be staying on at E-line as a part-time employee under the title of Educational Media Specialist.
During my time at Sesame Workshop, I was involved throughout the development and production process of Sesame Street shows, interactive digital games and activities, and various outreach projects. While working with the Education and Research team, I saw how Sesame content is informed by research, from preliminary development to curriculum design, to the iterative process of production, with multiple phases of testing and evaluation. I contributed to a new extension of the "Healthy Habits for Life" nutritional outreach initiative, usability testing with preschoolers for a new online platform featuring Abby’s Flying Fairy School, and a PBS research study, in cooperation with the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, "Children's Perceptions of Mobile Technologies". I'm very excited to be staying on with Sesame Workshop as a freelance researcher.
Oxford University Press
My intern experience in the English Learning and Teaching Department of Oxford University Press has been exciting and rewarding. I’ve had the great opportunity to participate in several projects, recommending digital game templates for their new primary series, evaluating their current digital tool, and analyzing teacher feedback from Korea on how technology is used in the classroom for primary students. What I liked most is that I am able to apply what I’ve learned in the program firsthand and that learning from this internship definitely helped me transition into my career as an English learning content designer.
E-Line Media publishes digital entertainment that "engages, educates and empowers" with a core focus on computer/video games and webcomics/graphic novels. I discovered my interest in designing and developing educational games through the program, and I was excited to be able to apply what I learned in school to the industry so quickly. The company is currently developing a game platform called Gamestar Mechanic, which intends to teach systems thinking through game design. In my internship at E-Line, I primarily wrote and edited the learning materials for this game platform.
UN Global Action on Aging
I interned at GAA, “Global Action on Aging,” one of the United Nations' non-profit, affiliated organizations. I initiated and led a project to develop an online social network, which will be implemented in the coming year. The goal of the network is to promote an international convention on aging and to educate people all over the world about aging issues. Also, I had the chance to attend many international events and General Assembly sessions and to meet highly experienced personnel at the UN. It was a great opportunity and honor to model the UN and be part of its daily routine during the whole period of my internship.
American Museum of Natural History
My internship was in the Exhibition Department of the American Museum of Natural History. I helped develop three upcoming exhibits: “The Race”, “The Brain” and “The Dinosaur”. I worked with different software programs and applications, including iMovie, Adobe Illustrator, and Photoshop, in order to create and develop videos or images that will be displayed in the exhibits. Also, I designed activities that will be included in the exhibit stations, including technology-based interactive models and hands-on interactive models.
During my internship in social media and web design at Art 21, I assisted in the launch of three new Web sites: art21.org, pbs.org/art21, and blog.art21.org. The website content was targeted to educators and students. Focus on education sections, I authored and managed content prepared content for effective presentation on the Web. Additionally, I helped with the administration of Art21's presence on Web platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and others. On these platforms, I established and maintained groups and lists of relevant peers, colleagues, and organizations, while interacting and communicating with their communities and audiences.
American Museum of Natural History
Wan-Ling Annie Tsai
I did my internship in the Exhibition Department at the American Museum of Natural History. My main job was to help design the interactive visitor experiences for special/temporary exhibitions this and next year, such as “The Race,” ”The Brain,” and “Titans”. I learned how interactive design can enhance visitors’ learning in a real museum setting and how to make exhibitions more impressive, effective and interesting. Exhibits must attempt one or a combination of three goals: to inform, to entertain, to motivate. Moving from conceptual to schematic phase and finally to the production phase, we focused on user-centered design, ergonomic design, and visitor surveys. This work related to my academic experiences in ECT, specifically how multimedia learning and user/visitor engagement are paramount for a successful exhibition.