Staff Development for ICT and e-Learning: skills or pedagogy? Janet Hanson Associate Head of Academic Services (Learning and Teaching) Bournemouth University firstname.lastname@example.org
Staff Development for ICT and e-Learning: skills or pedagogy? The aim of this session is to focus on some of the questions raised and approaches taken in supporting staff in developing the use of ICT for learning and teaching, drawing on comparisons between UK and Australia.
About me • Associate Head of Academic Services, an integrated support service, includes Library and ICT as well as Staff Development for academic and support staff, and Learning Support; • Three academic staff, three demonstrator staff in the Learning Design Studio, with a growing research capability; • Team of disability staff
Pressures facing Australian Universities • Same as those facing UK: • widening access and increasing flexibility • dealing with more diverse students • funding stretch • globalisation and threat from competitors • greater demand for accountability • e-learning used by both distance and campus universities as a way of meeting the challenges
Motivating lecturers to use e-learning: factors affecting adoption or rejection • Motivation to do things differently • Seeing a reason for changing • Fit with lecturer’s conception of teaching, belief in its value • Fear loss of academic autonomy • Time to engage • Fear of efficiency gains • Knowledge of what can be done with e-learning • IT skills • E-learning environment that is easy to use • Support, both technical and pedagogic • Incentives, reward and recognition
Understanding theaudience Are you supporting the 10% of enthusiastic Innovators and Early Adopters who have different needs to the more cautious Mainstream Majority ? (Moore, 1991)
Innovators/EA want latest technology prepared to try new ideas strong risk-takers want revolutionary change Majority want to see the larger educational reason for ICT use provide opportunities to explore their own teaching develop confidence to make changes Characteristics of the audiences (Johnston & McCormack)
What is your orientation to academic development practice? (Land) • Managerial with institutional focus • Political strategist/vigilant opportunist seeking a power base • Romantic/Reflective Practitioner concerned with individual well-being • Research evidence/discipline specific • Professional competence and enhanced skill base
“Academic staff are interested in teaching, not in technology…. Successful introduction of technology needs to begin with considerations of teaching that indicate the need for the use of technology” (Bottomley, et al. 1999, p240.)
Central or devolved organisation • All universities visited had central provision, some had devolved support as well: • Deakin • Edith Cowan • Melbourne
Strategies for engagement • Designated person to support each faculty; Southern Cross • Award bearing course: Edith Cowan, Monash, SC, UTSydney, Wollongong • Budgets to bid for, Edith Cowan • L&T prizes: “compassionate pioneers” at QueenslandUT • Service level agreements, EC, Wollongong
Focus on ICT skills or pedagogic research base ? • Most offered staff development in a broad range of learning and teaching activities as well as e-learning; • some had other units involved in research into e-learning and ICT, eg: • Charles Sturt • Edith Cowan • In two cases these research focused units had been disbanded: QUT and UTS
Staffing • Tensions evident between academic appointments and technical • Lecturers, especially Faculty of Education, complained about the lack of understanding of pedagogical principles of educational designers, with a focus on a transmission rather than a constructivist approach • Yet units with academic staff had been disbanded, because they lost a service orientation.
Links with other staff development providers • It was often not evident how the unit providing support and development for e-learning linked to other units providing staff development.
References BOTTOMLEY, J., SPRATT,C. AND RICE, M., 1999. Strategies for effective strategic organisational change in teaching practices: Case studies at Deakin University. Interactive Learning Environments, 7 (2-3) 227-247. COLLIS, B. AND MOONEN,J., 2001. Flexible learning in a digital world. London: Kogan Page. JOHNSTON, S. AND McCORMACK, C., 1996. Integrating information technology into university teaching: identifying the needs and providing the support. International Journal of Educational Management, 10 (5) 36-42. (University of Canberra) LAND, R., 2001. Agency, context and change in academic development. International Journal for Academic Management, 6 (1), 4-20. MOORE, G.A., 1991. Crossing the chasm. New York: Harper Business. OLCOTT, D. JR. AND WRIGHT, S., 1995. An institutional support framework for increasing faculty participation in postsecondary distance education. American Journal of Distance Education, 9 (3), 5-17. SOMEKH, B., 1998. Supporting information and communication technology innovations in higher education. Journal of Information Technology for Teacher Education, 7(1) 11-31.