In this session we share how we approach academic development in relation to TEL/Digital Learning. Delegates will use this as the starting point for discussion of teacher development around digital practices and of the place of teaching theory.
Presentation 1: Introduction (5 mins)
Background and ethos of the course. TEL training tends towards software training which loses impact because its context is divorced from learning and teaching (Angeli & Valanides, 2009). We begin with the experience of learning, not with technology. We align to a move towards an ‘ecological balance’ by which student understanding is central to the use of technology for course design (Ellis and Goodyear, 2010), (Biggs and Tang 2007). This builds on our previous experiences of building confidence in online teaching.
Activity 1 “Pair and Share” Discussion (10 mins):
What training in teaching with technology is available at participants’ institutions? What’s it like?
How well embedded is it in teacher development institutionally?
We suggest three basic categories: a technology component of basic teacher education, technology training around specific tools, experiential ‘learn by doing’ courses.
Presentation 2: The course, outcomes and evaluation (10 mins)
Here we put some flesh on the bones of the first presentation with further details about the course.
We seek to help participants learn about online learning by engaging in creative and collaborative activities. We aim to establish a community of practice to endure after the course ends for support, discussion and development, we have had limited success with this. Because community and group work are key to the success of the course, we used a blended ‘anchor’ model (Rossett and Frazee, 2006) to help participants get to know each other quickly, after which most interaction is online. The course lasts three weeks to allow the experience of asynchronous online collaboration and for reflective practice.
Approaches and theories offered on the course for exploration are Salmon’s five step model (Salmon & Giles 1999), Community of Inquiry (Garrison et al 1999), Mayer’s cognitive theory of multimedia learning (Mayer 2009) and Flipped Learning. Participants experience learning and participation in several environments: Google Community, VLE, Google Docs, Adobe Connect. They gain a sense of the educationally contextualized connection, sharing and collaboration enabled by these tools. Student presentations in the final plenary gave an opportunity to evaluate these activities and plan for the use of them (or others) in teaching. This provides feedback in addition to a detailed evaluation form.
Feedback has been very positive with some caveats (mostly about the face to face sessions). Students generally leave with specific plans for development of their online teaching. We offer some examples.
Activity 2 (Groups of three and Share Discussion (15 mins)
Advocates for technology use in education stress integration with institutionally supported pedagogic approaches and their theoretical groundings (Laurillard 2013) as well as ‘how to’ training.
To what extent is this the experience of delegates?
- How can we improve TEL training in this respect?
Angeli, C., & Valanides, N. (2009). Epistemological and methodological issues for the conceptualization, development, and assessment of ICT–TPCK: Advances in technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK). Computers & Education, 52(1), 154–168. doi:10.1016/j.compedu.2008.07.006
Biggs, J., & Tang, C. (2007). Teaching for Quality Learning at University (Third.). New York.
Ellis, R., & Goodyear, P. (2010). Students’ experiences of e-learning in higher education, the ecology of sustainable innovation. Oxford: Routledge.
Garrison, D., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical Inquiry in a Text-Based Environment: Computer Conferencing in Higher Education. The Internet and Higher Education, 2(2-3), 87–105. doi:10.1016/S1096-7516(00)00016-6
Laurillard, D. (2013). Rethinking university teaching: A conversational framework for the effective use of learning technologies (Second Edi). London: Routledge.
Mayer, R. E. (2009). Multimedia Learning. Cambridge University Press.
Rossett, A., & Frazee, R. V. (2006). Blended learning opportunities. American Management Association.
Salmon, G., & Giles, K. (1999). Creating and implementing successful online learning environments: a practitioner perspective. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 25(November), 1–5. Retrieved from http://www.eurodl.org/materials/contrib/1999/salmon/index.pdf