A few new courses … the how and why

As the staff development programme starts to take shape, it is important to work in the new technologies and new learning opportunities quandrant. The following staff and student package should provide lots of opportunity for this, while not over stretching our limited resources.

Student (post grad … grad school) provision

I’d suggest the following should be a heads up for post grad students about the possibilities of challenging how they currently undertake their research. It should reflect the vast majority of post grads at UCS are part time, and distance learners. Therefore, there needs to be a strong degree of easy to use technology which enables them to create stuff (as an individual or in a group), share stuff and communicate.

These will be 45 minute master classes, which includes the idea of being hands-on (computer rooms). The emphasis of the sessions are around introducing the ideas of technologies enhancing common researcher tasks, and then reducing the anxieties people might have around how to actually use the technology. Therefore, it will be a tried and tested formula;

  • what is the objective of the tasks? If we deconstruct it within your needs what sort of functionality do you need? ie., developing a set of user requirements
  • introduce the likely technology enhancement, walk through how it works, what it looks like and how to author / use the technology
  • use a few case studies to further support the application … based on UK HE, and UCS (when we can)
  • get people started in terms of how to create an account and complete a number of tasks which will meet the stated user requirements
  • discuss the issues surrounding the use of the technology, in particular the use of risks associated with using externally hosted solutions
  • get them to work you the where next / pdp template

Themes and technologies we’d likely use in the first instance are;

  • enhancing reflection and self publication through blogs
  • developing and maintaining your personal learning environment through social network tools, including Twitter
  • keeping and sharing web resources through social bookmarking services as Diigo
  • collaboration with supervisors and colleagues via Google Docs

Staff: The fab or fad technology series

The intention of the fab or fad technology series run a seminar series (45 minutes, but not in computer rooms), where the emphasis is to focus the discussion on the technology. So instead of our usual approach of trying to focus on the learning and identify potential technologies which might help support this, we shift it to focus on the technology, list the affordances, and then collectively work through real world scenarios where we might be able to use it (identifying the pitfalls on the way). This should involve the audience writing up the scenarios on post it notes. we’ll also identify potential barriers to use. Some of these technologies might already have a track record in education, but not at UCS, but they should be relatively new. At the end of each seminar the audience will vote on if it is a fad or fab … ie., “do they agree with the following proposition … the house believes in three years time, xxxx as a learning technology will be a fad”

The seminar design will be introduce the technology, define and classify it, demo it, answer questions from the floor, then get people creating ideas.

technologies for use to include are;

  • the ipad
  • augmented reality mobile web browsing
  • the flip camera

For each session we’ll write up the outcomes, comments and votes.

An outcome for us is to stimulate ideas and debate around individuals, and hopefully encourage people to apply for ilts grants to implement these in their teaching.




One comment

  1. Pingback: An emerging model for web 2.0 workshops for grad students at UCS « Andy’s Blog

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