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Innovating pedagogy – 2015 trends report

Clive Young9 December 2015

Innovating-Pedagogy-2015-cover-large-211x300

Innovating Pedagogy 2015 is the latest annual report from the Open University highlighting new forms of teaching, learning and assessment with an aim to “guide teachers and policy makers in productive innovation”.

The scope is similar to the US Horizon reports, but presents a useful UK perspective.  It is of course sometimes difficult to differentiate the meaningful from the merely modish in such futurology (see for example Matt Jenner’s analysis of Horizon’s trend-spotting). However such reports definitely have an impact on the discussion around technology in education, even if initially only at the level of “buzz-word bingo” for those in the know. A fellow learning technologist last week accused me of “incidental learning” when, during a pause in our teaching session, he caught me reading a random handout left over from some previous class.

The current crop is;

  1. Crossover learning – connecting formal and informal learning
  2. Learning through argumentation – developing skills of scientific argumentation
  3. Incidental learning – harnessing unplanned or unintentional learning
  4. Context-based learning – how context shapes and is shaped by the process of learning
  5. Computational thinking – solving problems using techniques from computing
  6. Learning by doing science with remote labs – guided experiments on authentic scientific equipment
  7. Embodied learning – making mind and body work together to support learning
  8. Adaptive teaching – adapting computer-based teaching to the learner’s knowledge and action
  9. Analytics of emotions – responding to the emotional states of students
  10. Stealth assessment – unobtrusive assessment of learning processes

A fascinating list with several novel concepts (to me anyway), the report gives a quick overview of why the OU thinks these are or may be important and includes handy links to further reading.

The authors also identify six overarching pedagogy themes that have emerged from the last four reports: Scale, Connectivity, Reflection, Extension, Embodiment and Personalisation.

Now and next from E-Learning Environments Summer 2015

Domi C Sinclair15 July 2015

The second edition of our new monthly vlog series, where we bring you all the most important news from UCL E-Learning Environments. This video focuses on the what ELE are doing over the summer period, as well as some future plans.

Useful link:

Moodle Snapshot: https://moodle-snapshot.ucl.ac.uk/

ELE Blog: https://blogs.ucl.ac.uk/digital-education/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ucl_ele

Game SIG: https://moodle.ucl.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=21489§ion=3

Introducing the ELE vlog

Domi C Sinclair22 June 2015

In E-Learning Environments (ELE) we have lots of useful and important information we need to communicate with staff (and students) who use our systems. We have various different ways of communicating with everyone who uses our systems (like Moodle, Lecturecast and MyPortfolio) including email, Twitter, Moodle News and this blog. However we also recognise that these are all text based mediums, and sometimes read chunks of information isn’t preferential. To try and make this easier, and offer an alternative way of communicating we are pleased to introduce the ELE vlog.

We are launching this new vlog (or video blog) on our YouTube channel and hope to post a new video every month informing viewers of the most interesting or important things happening within ELE and our systems. If we get a good response, or have requests, then we may increase the frequency of videos, or make videos explaining particular topics. If you have any ideas of videos you’d like to see from ELE then please comment on this blog post or send us an email to ele@ucl.ac.uk.

So, without further adieu, please enjoy our first vlog embedded below (and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more educational and hopefully entertaining content!)

ELE Communication Channels

Moodle News: https://moodle.ucl.ac.uk/mod/forum/view.php?f=1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/UCL_ELE

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/LTSSUCL/videos

2015 Horizon Report – what are the six key trends in E-Learning?

Clive Young17 February 2015

nmc_itunesu.HR2015-170x170Every year the NMC Horizon Report examines emerging technologies for their potential impact on and use in teaching, learning, and ‘creative inquiry’ within the environment of higher education. The report, downloadable in PDF, is compiled by an international body of experts and provides a useful checklist trends, challenges and technologies in the field and provides a useful benchmark of what is most talked about at the moment.

The key trends identified in the in the short term are

  • Increasing use of blended learning
  • Redesigning learning spaces

Longer term trends are: growing focus on measuring learning, proliferation of open learning resources, advancing cultures of change and innovation and increasing cross-institution collaboration.

Key ‘solvable’ challenges are

  • Blending formal and informal learning
  • Improving digital literacy

More difficult challenges are; personalising learning, teaching complex thinking and the ‘wicked’ ones are competing models of education and the old chestnut, rewarding teaching.

The important developments in educational technology they identify are in the short term are

  • Bring your own device (BYOD)
  • Flipped classroom – same as last year

Longer-term innovations are; makerspaces, wearable technology, adaptive learning technologies and the ‘Internet of Things’.

As usual there are useful commentaries and links throughout. Encouraging that many of these ideas are already being implemented, trialed and discussed here at UCL.

 

Online learning at research-intensive universities Part 1

Clive Young9 February 2015

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LERU report

One conspicuous aspect of the advance of online learning in higher education has been the leading role of research-intensive universities (RIUs).

Blended learning; lecture capture and media use; online and peer marking; exercises, online discussion and quizzes in the VLE. Once the preserve only of e-learning enthusiasts such approaches have become unexpectedly mainstream. Many RIUs continue to be active in the MOOC phenomenon, due in part to the purposefully ‘elitist’ recruitment of partners by the main platform providers. Others focus more on SPOCs (small private online courses) for CPD and distance learning. Online learning seems to have been an opportunity for RUIs to publicly refocus or restate a commitment to innovation in teaching as well as research.

Last summer the League of European Research Universities (LERU) published an excellent hype-free report Online learning at research-intensive universities and the group met last week to discuss its finding and impact. LERU is an invitation-only members association of 21 RIUs of which UCL is an active member.

The paper had recognised that the technology associated with online learning, its “capacity to communicate knowledge widely and quickly and its capacity for innovation and creativity” often resonated with a RUIs’ research mission, increasingly measured by dissemination and impact. The global outreach potential of MOOCs, open resources and approaches, and SPOCs they considered irrefutable for both teaching and research.

The paper recommended that universities assess strategically (e.g. by scenario planning) the extent to which they wish their existing on-campus learning experiences to involve online delivery and digital materials and how much to extend their online learning opportunities to learners or co-enquirers outside their university.

Such an approach would have to consider the extent to which universities wish to work collaboratively with other institutions, or with commercial partners, how to sustain investments in financial and human capital and of course identify the reputational advantages and risks for their institution’s brand.

The follow-up LERU seminar last will be discussed further in my next post.

Introducing Luke Davis

Jessica Gramp9 May 2014

LukeDavisCommunications Manager (Education) Luke Davis is the editor of the Teaching and Learning Portal – a one-stop shop for news, case studies and resources on the subject of teaching at UCL.

We asked him about his work on the site and how UCL staff can get involved.

 

What can people expect to find at the Teaching and Learning Portal?

The aim is to offer everything that a member of UCL staff could need on the subject of teaching. That includes plenty of case studies about new approaches being used inside the university as well as up-to-date news and event info. There is also information on topics such as professional development, learning technologies and education strategy.

 

What does your role involve?

Day-to-day, I find out about the latest things UCL staff are doing in terms of teaching and then produce new case studies, features and news stories.

 

How long have you been at UCL?

Just three months. It’s a big change from working in a small communications agency, but I’m really enjoying it. There are so many fascinating people doing incredible things, and, of course, education is right at the top of the agenda.

 

What plans do you have for the Portal?

I’m currently working with colleagues in Web and Mobile Services to redevelop it. It’s a big job that will involve lots of user research before scouring all the existing content and redesigning the site. The idea is that we end up with a modern, attractive site that’s easy to navigate and full of up-to-date, useful, fascinating content. We’ve set ourselves the daunting target of having it ready in October.

 

How can UCL people get involved?

If you do have a story, or even if you’d just like to suggest a topic for me to explore further, please get in touch. I’m always on the look-out for new leads and ideas. And if you want to keep up-to-date with what’s on the site, please sign up to the monthly digest newsletter.

 

Contact Luke at l.davis@ucl.ac.uk

Visit the Portal at www.ucl.ac.uk/teaching-learning