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Technology Enhanced Learning 2014-15

TELwebsiteAs part of the Academic Development Directorate Operating Plan 2014-15, Technology Enhanced Learning have identified three new & emerging trends which we feel have great potential for application at YSJ: Flipped Classroom, Learning Analytics, and Open Badges.

According to the 2014 Horizon Report, the Flipped Classroom refers to a model of learning that rearranges how time is spent both in and out of class to shift the ownership of learning from the educators to the students. It can therefore be used as a means to support a move to a blended learning approach. Flip teaching is a form of blended learning which encompasses any use of technology to influence learning in a classroom, so a tutor can spend more time interacting with students instead of lecturing. The flipped classroom provides avenues for tutors to become facilitators of active learning. The goal is to extend learning time conversation outside of class through threaded discussion which can occur both before and after the session. Some staff are already using Camtasia Relay to record their lectures and sharing them with their students via the Media Library. Others are recording video tutorials, or creating learning resources for their students. Our target is to expand this area of work throughout next year as part of our curriculum development work. It will require support for staff in the development of resources using technology and in the design of this approach in their particular disciplinary context.

The 2014 Horizon Report describes Learning Analytics as the:

Field associated with deciphering trends and patterns from educational big data, or huge sets of student-related data, to further the advancement of a personalized, supportive system of higher education.

Learning analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of data about learners and their contexts, for purposes of understanding and optimising learning and the environments in which it occurs. It is currently a rapidly developing field in higher education, where learning is happening increasingly within online and hybrid environments. It is proposed that the TEL team explore approaches to analysing the data of users’ behaviours that are recorded in the Moodle logs (page views, unique actions, average session length, bounce rate etc.). It is proposed that analysis of data would enable tutors to focus on the pedagogic implications, and invest in planned improvement activity through informed decision making.

The Open Badges system is an emerging technology, which enables the recognition of a wide range of learning. Used and supported by institutions like MIT, Purdue and Yale universities, the system is free to use and uses open standards. Badges are portable, so they can be taken by the learner anywhere. Institutions such as UCL and Sheffield Hallam, and the Scottish Education Group are all either using or exploring the possibilities this infrastructure provides as a means to recognise and reward the formal or informal learning of staff and students.

We propose to investigate the potential use of Open Badges to provide a means for staff to evidence their professional development mapped to the UK Professional Standards Framework (UKPSF).  This will support work, within the YSJ CPD Framework, that we need to undertake in 2014-15 as to how we recognise that all our staff who are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy are maintaining good standing against the criteria in the UKPSF.  We anticipate that this will provide opportunities for collaboration and partnership with our students who may be involved in the recognition of exceptional work by staff.

We would also like to explore the opportunities for using Open Badges with module tutors & programme teams, as a way of recognising informal learning or framework-based competencies for students.

The TEL team would love to hear from any members of staff who are keen to explore any of these approaches in the coming academic year, please contact us at TEL@yorksj.ac.uk.

Phil Vincent

Phil’s focus is to work across Faculties to support the implementation of the Academic Strategy, and in particular contribute to the effective development and implementation of technology enhanced learning.

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