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Implementing the strategy. individual. institutional. departmental. Local needs. Semi-autonomous schools. Local cultures. Federated structure. Lack of recognition and reward. Lack of strategic vision. Deans not involved. HoDs not involved. No Targets. No money. Portfolio review.

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implementing the strategy
Implementing the strategy




just another brick in the wall

Local needs

Semi-autonomous schools

Local cultures

Federated structure

Lack of recognition and reward

Lack of strategic vision

Deans not involved

HoDs not involved

No Targets

No money

Portfolio review

Initiative overload?


Dispersed support services

Just another brick in the wall?
understanding the context
Understanding the context


Strategic direction & vision

Recognition and reward

Deans not involved

Ambiguous targets


Brookes Virtual & WebCT

Energetic innovators

Pockets of good practice

Existing eL strategy


HR Strategy

SD planning & PDR process



Review of course portfolio


implementing the strategy1
Implementing the strategy
  • Harness the energy of our innovators to drive change forward
  • Make senior managers aware of the groundswell of energy and good practice already occurring
  • Involve all stakeholders in the continuing process of (re)defining an appropriate strategic direction for e-learning at Brookes.
managing educational change
Managing educational change

Caldwell, B. & Spinks, J. (1988) The Self-Managing School, London, Falmer Press.

Goal setting

Policy making





implementing e learning @ brookes
Implementing E-learning @ Brookes

Modes of engagement

Exemplar database

Targeted staff development

School supported


Course design intensive

Learning Technologists

& E-learning Champions

School strategies

E-learning strategy

SD/HR funding

Annual monitoring & updating


& evaluation

PGDip Embedding Learning Technology module

Partnerships in Practice

Business Team Challenge

understanding your context
Take time to do a SWOT analysis of your own e-learning context


some of the bricks in your University’s wall(s)

some of the levers available to you for breaking open those walls

Understanding your context
e learning champions
E-learning Champions
  • Write an e-learning strategy for their school
  • Identify local areas of action
  • Manage the learning technologist [in almost all cases] and use that person’s time and skill to shape school actions
  • Consider staff development needs for the school using a cascade model
raises the profile

local power base

owned, local and relevant eL strategies

recognized longstanding activity and rewarded success

a named group for dissemination and up-skilling

the skills, interests and time allocated vary

there is no central resource

objection to the name

lack of a support group



learning technologists
Learning Technologists
  • Job description and person spec
  • JISC/ALT funded project on accrediting learning technologists
  • Tiny amount of HR strategy funds
  • Learning technologists forum
  • Audit of current e-learning operation
  • Exemplar showcase
school strategies
School strategies
  • Template to aid strategic thinking and develop action plan
  • Covering memo explaining why
  • Linked to staff development planning process
  • Linked to LT&A strategy
  • Promoted discussion and debate
  • Short turnaround time

Mode 1: baseline admin and support

Mode 2: Blended learning

Mode 3:

Fully online/flexible

school supported projects
School supported projects
  • Business school - diagnostic testing of large, first year cohorts to improvemodule selection & team challenge
  • School of Health & Social Care - to enhance two very large multi-professional courses with online activities
  • Technology - to introduce large scale CAA for formative feedback and diagnosis
  • Theology - to convert paper-based DL MA to online
targeted staff development
Targeted staff development
  • The course (re)design intensive
  • On-demand in response to specific needs
  • Course teams involving learning technologists, teaching fellows and administrators
planning tools
Planning tools
  • Blue skies checklist
  • Risk analysis template
  • Critical friend prompts
  • Storyboarding
monitoring and evaluation
Monitoring and evaluation
  • Annual cycle of revisiting school strategies linked to school staff development plans
  • Annual interviews with e-learning champions
  • Support in designing, conducting and analysing course evaluations, e.g.
    • Focus groups with Business Team Challenge students
    • Interviews with PiP staff and analysis of student feedback
  • JISC learner experience scoping study
summary of benefits
Summary of benefits
  • Schools thinking more clearly about how to use e-learning
  • Stimulating the growth in the use of the Brookes Virtual Learning Environment (WebCT) from fewer than 250 learners in 2002, to nearly 15,000 today
  • E-learning activists now working on key ‘school supported’ initiatives
  • Enabled us to reach and involve parts of the uni who have been difficult to engage before
  • Made explicit effective staff development
what have we learnt
What have we learnt?

Find opportunities to work with academics earlier

Work in wider (no – wider!) course teams

Use setting of absolute targets wisely

Allow for lumpy development e.g. through schools setting their own agendas

Take the support of individuals and their career development seriously

Use developers time in targeted staff development.

Find some from inside or outside the institution


Revised E-learning strategy (2005-8)

aims to apply Learning Technology to the provision of flexible, active, collaborative and professionally authentic learning

5 key projects

Supporting e–learning through curriculum design and development

Developing, enabling and valuing e–Learning practitioners

Improving and expanding environments for e–learning

Widening participation and creating effective e–learning partnerships

Researching and evaluating e–learning

Dr. Rhona Sharpe

Oxford Centre for Staff and Learning Development

Oxford Brookes University