Public Group active 5 years, 2 months ago
Innovation in learning and teaching is an ongoing process. All learning technologists and digital advocates have floods of ideas that are implemented and ride the waves of success; however some ideas sink to the bottom of the ocean. The Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association (UCISA), User Skills Group (USG) have approached challenges of disseminating innovation, sharing good practice, and discussing enabling factors and barriers of digital technology in education by establishing a ‘community of practice’ providing a safe haven where this can occur. To encourage the flow of good practice through the UCISA USG community, a collection of case studies exploring the use of technology and pedagogic innovation in user skills teaching have recently been published. This contributed to a successful conference. Subsequently a series of webinars have been delivered to anchor colleagues across the UK to discuss relevant issues surrounding information technology, digital literacy, teaching and pedagogy using learning technologies in the post-16 education sector. Following inspiration from a model used by the ‘Learning and Skills Group’ an online community has recently been launched. Knowledge and ideas are shared, collaborations and partnerships initiated, problems discussed and solutions offered. Feedback from online participants and webinar attendees is used to enhance the network for the benefit of its members on a continual basis. Community members have been invited to complete an online questionnaire, containing closed and open questions. Statistical data and qualitative comments will be analysed statistically and NVivo software will be used to help identify trends and understand the expectations of participants. Data gathered will serve as a basis for action research to investigate how this tool can be improved to support the post-16 education training community.The online community and webinar series will be the focus of our presentation. Existing content and coverage will be explored, forthcoming planned activity; highlighting ways that existing and new members of the community can get and stay involved; and report on evaluation data of the resources so far. Key features of the online platform will be demonstrated and opportunities this presents to the professional community will be discussed. Projects such as these can encounter troubled waters and lessons learnt to date will be reflected upon. Enabling factors riding the waves of success and challenges threatening to sink without trace will be discussed around the online community model. Dialogue will be facilitated to discuss a range of initiatives that the User Skills Group is pursuing and an opportunity to identify and refine themes and topics considered.
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