15 March 2011 2 Comments
A discussion towards the end of last week sparked off some thoughts in my head about how I have been supporting Panopto, our Lecture Capture solution, and how I might continue to do so in the future.
In particular, much of the work that I have been involved with in the last six months or so, have been concerned with operationalising Classroom Technologies as a whole, with an underlying emphasis of the pedagogical principles behind such a deployment.
And whilst I feel strongly that this part of my work continues to be important, and needs to be maintained, I am realistic enough to appreciate that being part of an educational development unit entails a responsibility to the academic community where pedagogical enhancement should be the centre of much of what I do.
Very simply, I’ve thought about how (and why) I support Panopto in particular, with a set of Inputs and (Pedagogically focused) Outputs from and to our staff development model.
- Webinars – I am fairly new to the area of lecture capture, and have been keen to upskill in this area. A range of webinars, both specific to Panopto and not, have been appearing in a variety of places over the last few months. One such source has been the ViTAL Special Interest Group (SIG), which is focused on the use of video in education. Recent webinars have focused on the deployment of Panopto at Imperial College London, and another on “webinar visited some of the pedagogical questions raised by new(ish) technologies such as lecture capture”. My aim is to watch these webinars (usually a recording, unfortunately), jotting down some notes along the way. Questions can always be followed up with presenters either during the session, or afterwards.
- Distributors – I’ve always been keen to build good working relationships with the distributors of such technologies, both with the UK-based people, and sometimes, with those in the US too. Whilst their approach can sometimes be sales focused, their published case studies often provide invaluable pedagogically sound reasons for the deployment of such technologies. Such strands can subsequently be developed locally at institution level.
- Blogs & Tweets – This area really shouldn’t be underestimated. Much of the Lecture Capture-related work that I’ve been made aware of has been through a variety of RSS feeds, or through Twitter. Custom searches on Lecture Capture and Panopto, setup using Tweetdeck, have been incredibly useful in locating new, relevant and consistent sources of information.
- Papers & Journals – Lecture Capture has been around in several guises for a number of years, and some research in the area exists. Mostly it has been case studies, but occasionally, there’s a relevant paper that catches the eye.
- Special Interest Groups – As a Steering Group member of the ESTICT SIG has enabled me to connect with like minded individuals and teams around the UK HE sector. The ViTAL SIG, mentioned above, is also another source of interest. This aids the process of what is being discussed at other HEIs, both pedagogically and technically.
(Pedagogically focused) Outputs
- Classroom Technologies website – This is the central point of CT activity at the University of Bath. The resource contains details on staff development, service updates and session reports and case studies (often written by practitioners). It is the last item which is vitally important – academics are more likely to engage with the technology if they can identify with the benefits to their students.
- Staff Development – I facilitate a range of opportunities, which include a Using Technologies in Face to Face teaching workshop as well as our now renowned Masterclass seminars, which are co-trained with product distributors. Whilst it is easy to become diverted by the What? and the How? of such technologies, the Why? is always, always (said twice for reinforcement!) at the centre of what I promote. I often look to broader sector intitatives (assessment and feedback), the institutional Learning & Teaching Strategy (innovation) as well as the National Students Survey (timely feedback on learning) for inspiration, as well as drawing on local work (Bath-based research papers that have been presented at conferences).
- Presentations – I do my best to get involve and present information on Classroom Technologies at Departmental Meetings, or sessions for the programme for new lecturers. Often, the technology has to be the hook (it’s often rather shiny!) but emphasising how engaging in Lecture Capture can add value to the learning and teaching experience has to be discussed. Subsequent further meetings with those interested, often helps to draw out the valued added.
- Posters – Our Innovations Day 2011 with provide for a perfect opportunity to feed back current project progress colleagues, both those who have used Lecture Capture so far, and those who may wish to do so at the moment. This poster is likely to be based on a particular Semester 1 unit, where some quantitative and qualitative data, collected from students, is available to support any findings.
- Conferences & Papers – Inevitably, the buzzing conference scene is a useful place to disseminate any work undertaken at the University of Bath. My paper at the 6th Plymouth e-Learning Conference is focused more on technological deployment, but once academics become more comfortable with the technology, I feel that it will be easier to explore (and collaborate with them to apply) pedagogical models related to Lecture Capture. The flipped lecture is one that I’m especially keen to explore, for example.
Undoubtedly, this approach will continue to evolve as the months and years roll on. If your approach is similar, or different, why not leave a comment on this blog or drop me a line via email.