15 April 2011 Leave a comment
Professor Stephen Heppell’s inspiring and humorous keynote, set the tone for the Day #2 of the 6th Plymouth e-Learning Conference. With being unable to stay for Day #3 due to other commitments, I was keen to make the most of Day #2 and continue to build on what I had learned, and the new ideas that I’d developed, over the course of the first day.
In particular, Stephen looked at a range of learning spaces that exist in schools, colleges, Higher Education (HE) and elsewhere, and sought to help the audience visualise what they might look like in the future.
In a world of new, social and digital media, I was struck by one Stephen’s closing items, which focused What is the equivalent to a 1,500 word assignment? The suggested he put forward were:
- Managing an on-line discussion for a week
- Editing a 10 second video
- Scripting and posting a 3 minute podcast
- Authoring an animated diagram in Flash
- Annotating 10 website links
- 750 words with 1 Augmented Reality object embedded
- 500 words on a web page with SMS comments
Further to this, the question that I feel that (I) need (to) answer(ing) are: How can we encourage academic to take this approach? How might this work with university QA statements, in particular, current methods and modes of assessment (and feedback), and marking criteria? How can be ensure that a unit/programme’s learning outcomes are met with the assessment form isn’t traditional? Might any academic really want to take this approach?
Sharon Flynn (@sharonflynn) from NUI Galway presented on Clickers for Large Class Teaching which gave an overview of the approach that her institution have taken to the deployment of an Electronic Voting System (EVS) across particular department. Given my own interest, and work, in this area, I was keen to see how they’d been doing. One area that I still feel that we’re lacking in at the University of Bath is clear evaluation data from the use of Classroom Technologies as a whole, which might be used to support decisions made/taken in future. I think that I’ll be contact Sharon about the questions that she used!
My short paper, Looking Forwards Whilst Glancing Backwards: Institutional Deployment of Classroom Technologies, was well received by the audience and provoked a good discussion in the Q&A part revolving around particular deployment techniques and what might be expected of institutions and students technology-wise in five years time.
Whilst the presentation slides appear above, the full paper describing the work completed, is available from our institutional Publications Repository.
Following this, I managed to catch the end of Sarah Knight (@sarahknight) from JISC’s session on a Future focused curriculum which showcased their work on the JISC The Design Studio. Unfortunately, I didn’t managed to make too many notes from this session, so will have to investigate and reflect on this at a later date.
My final session attended was Mark Power (@markpower) and James Clay’s (@jamesclay) session Mobile Web Applications. The session highlighted for me the difference between a mobile app, and a mobile web app – and which might be most appropriate for an institution to deploy (if they were going down this route). Indeed, is the Apple App Store, or the Android Store, appropriate for delivering institution-specific apps?
Two HEIs have already embarked on the mobile web interfaces - MyMobileBristol (University of Bristol) and Mobile Oxford (University of Oxford) – utilising different frameworks. I know that within my own institution, a number of stakeholders groups are interested in the development and deployment of such an app, but nothing has as yet seen the light of day.
As I left Plymouth and headed back further up the south west, I reflected on another successful (alas, shortened for me) Plymouth e-Learning Conference, where future gazing and horizon scanning were both out again in full force. I thoroughly enjoyed my time there and look forward to returning next years. My sincere thanks to conference chair Steve Wheeler and rest of his conference team, for such a fantastic and enjoyable conference.