Communities of Practice

DSC_1246_NerComp Pvd 2016

NERCOMP Communities of Practice

In the spirit of our mission “To cultivate communities of practice around information technology…” NERCOMP is pleased to support NERCOMP Communities of Practice (CoP).  Communities of practice connect IT professionals in colleges and universities in the Northeast looking to network and collaborate on technological and institutional issues.

Communities of Practice give members with  common interests a way to collaborate virtually or in person, ask questions, learn from peers, and share your experience on a regional level. NERCOMP will create pathways for the creation of new Communities of Practice, as well as support Communities of Practice that already exist in the NERCOMP territory in new and exciting ways.

There are currently opportunities for NERCOMP members to join many different Communities of Practice (CoP’s) around a wide portfolio of interest areas:

How to join the Communities of Practice (CoP’s):  Register for listservs through your list subscriptions  on the NERCOMP website to take advantage of these Community of Practice opportunities.


Accessibility & Inclusion  (Leaders – Aaron Flint of Southern New Hampshire University, Justin Lauzon of Tufts University, Corrine Schoeb of Swarthmore College and Rebecca Taub of Brown University)
This CoP will be a forum for sharing ideas, asking questions, and providing support for anyone interested in exploring accessible/inclusive educational practices. Click here for Accessibility & Inclusion Community Page

Canvas  (Leaders – Candace Girard of Tufts University and Heather Richards of Nichols College)
This CoP provides all types of Canvas users in the region an opportunity to connect with their Canvas colleagues. In addition to being a valuable networking tool, group members have the opportunity to share ideas and strategies to take full advantage of Canvas LMS. Click here for the Canvas Community Page

Digital Libraries  (Leader – Mary Moser of University of Massachusetts – Boston)
This CoP is for digital library practitioners in the region to share knowledge, ideas, get help on issues relating to digitization, storage, digital preservation, security and access, use, and promotion. Click here for Digital Libraries Community Page

Emerging Technology  (Leaders – Maureen Giacobbe of Quinsigamond Community College and David Bass-Clark of University of New England)
This CoP will bring together thought leaders to discuss models for how to support cutting edge technologies in higher education. We will discuss use cases and workflows that accelerate the adoption and adaptation of new tools and service models that have the power to change the game by hacking higher ed.Click here for Emerging Technology Community Page

Games in Teaching & Learning   (Leader – Erica Lucci of Rutgers University)
This CoP explores how games and gaming of all flavors can be used within and outside the classroom. We will discuss the fundamentals of game design and development, provide resources for implementing games, and champion the use of games in teaching and learning environments. Click here for Games in Teaching & Learning Community Page

Help Desk   (Leaders – Matt Maderos & Jacob Edward Boucher, both of Boston University)
This CoP is focused on IT help desks and service desks from a technician perspective. Desktop Support Specialists and other IT technicians can share ideas and questions about workflow, projects, and problems related to tier 1 technical support. Click here for Help Desk Community Page

Information Security  (Leader – Joseph Bazeley of Wesleyan University)
This CoP focuses on sharing Information Security related trends and best practices within higher educational organizations.  Topics to include Information Security Awareness Education,  Emerging trends and threats and privacy/security related legislation. Information Security is everyone’s responsibility and as such this group is open to anyone with a responsibility or interest in the topic. Click here for Informational Security Community Page

Instructional Design  (Leaders – Jessica Egan of Baypath University, Justin Lauzon of Tufts University, Ricardo Poza of University of Massachusetts Medical School, AJ Scognamiglio of Johnson & Wales University and Domenic Screnci Jr. of Boston University)
This CoP covers discussions related to instructional design best practices, faculty partnerships, professional development, team building and institutional online strategy. We will also consider how instructional design plays a role in traditional lecture-based, hybrid, online and active learning contexts. Click here for Instructional Design Community Page

Knowledge Management  (Leader – Stacy Cohen of Framingham State University)
The goal of this CoP is to provide IT professionals with opportunities to connect with contacts, find resources, and give and receive guidance and recommendations to deliver a reliable knowledge base to constituents. Through virtual and face-to-face discussion we will discuss strategy and planning of a knowledge management solution. Click here for Knowledge Management Community Page

Networks   (Leader – Christopher Butler of Curry College)
This CoP will focus on sharing wired network, wireless network, and infrastructure related information and best practices that impact higher educational organizations.  Topics to include LAN/WLAN/WAN connectivity, operational management, architecture and design, physical plant, emerging trends, and threats. Click here for Networks Community Page

Northeast Lab Managers  (Leaders – Dean Abanilla of Rhode Island School of Design and Mary Coombs of Emerson College)
This CoP will allow Managers of Academic Computer Labs who often face common challenges to share their experiences at meeting those challenges. Click here for Northeast Lab Managers Community Page

Open Educational Resources in Teaching and Learning  (Leaders – Aaron Flint of Southern New Hampshire University & Robert Alan Harris of William Paterson University)
This CoP will explore how Open Educational Resources are being implemented into the teaching and learning environment. We will discuss how faculty are using open educational resources and open textbooks in their courses, how open pedagogy can transform assignments so students can contribute to OER development, and how institutions are developing open degree programs. Click here for Open Education Resources in Teaching and Learning Community Page

Project Management  (Leader – Jennifer Smith of The New School)
Managing projects in higher ed can be challenging due to the unique cultural and political environments in colleges and universities. This CoP provides a forum where project managers in higher ed can ask questions, share ideas and provide information about their project management practices, methods, tools and experiences, to help project managers successfully lead their projects. Click here for Project Management Community Page

Service Management (Leader – Deborah McDaniel of Rutgers)
This CoP brings together practitioners, professionals, and subject matter experts at all levels to discuss IT service management. We provide a forum to celebrate successes, ask questions, share ideas, and provide information about service management practices, methods, tools and experiences unique to delivering IT and technology-enabled services within higher education. Click here for Service Management Community Page

Student Employees  (Leader – Diana Voss of Stony Brook University)
This CoP is for all members, regardless of where you fall in your organization. Through both virtual and face-to-face networking opportunities we will share ideas and best practices in all facets of management of Student Employees. Click here for Student Employees Community Page

Teaching with Mobile Devices   (Leader – Jason Jones of Trinity College)
This CoP will focus on the innovations and opportunities presented by the use of smartphones and tablets in higher education.This community will focus on the integration of phones and tablets into the classroom (and the virtual classroom), and participants will be encouraged to share newly discovered apps and their possible uses for faculty as well as students.  Click here for Teaching with Mobile Devices Community Page 

User Experience Research & Design  (Leaders – Veronica Armour of Rutgers University & Melissa Paciulli of Holyoke Community College)
This CoP will discuss the application and practice of UX research and design in higher education, including libraries. We will discuss the challenges and successes of UX projects, the role of UX in higher ed, and emerging trends in the field. All UX practitioners from beginners to seasoned experts are encouraged to join us, and to ask questions and share ideas. Click here for User Experience Research & Design Community Event

Women in IT   (Leader – Rachel Schnepper of Wesleyan University)
This CoP is for all members, regardless of where you fall in your organization. Through both virtual and face-to-face networking opportunities we are re-launching this group to share best practices and discuss issues that impact women in higher education IT.  Join us and have your voice heard.  Click here for Women in IT Community Page


We encourage you to register for listservs through your list subscriptions on the NERCOMP website to take advantage of this opportunity to focus on sharing best practices and creating new knowledge to collectively advance professional practice.

The leaders of each Community of Practice (CoP) are noted above, feel free to reach out to the respective leaders if you have a specific question for that group. You may also contact us at

CoP – Leader Guidelines

CoP – Leader Toolkit

If you are interested in leading a Community of Practice (CoP) on a topic not listed, please email