Category Archives: learning

Handbook of Emerging Technologies for Learning

New technologies emerge all the time, feeling confused by it all then this is the handbook for you.

Over the last decade, in seminars, conferences, and workshops, Peter Tittenberger and I have had the opportunity to explore the role of technology in transforming learning.

From conversations during these engagements, a set of concerns has emerged:

Educators express interest in improving their teaching and learning practices, particularly emphasizing the need to improve engagement of learners (online or in-class).

While concerned about improving teaching and learning, educators generally resist:

  • Advanced pedagogical discussions that are not readily transferable to the online or face-to-face classroom
  • Technology-heavy hype and suggestions that the social element of learning can somehow be replaced.

This Handbook of Emerging Technologies for Learning (HETL) has been designed as a resource for educators planning to incorporate technologies in their teaching and learning activities.

It is written by the well respected George Siemens and Peter Tittenberger.

Via Andy Black’s blog.

Learning from digital natives: Integrating formal and informal learning

The HE Academy have published an interesting report into research into integrating formal and informal learning.

Formal and informal learning have been viewed as competing paradigms. However, students are increasingly adopting the tools and strategies for informal learning within formalised educational settings.

Potential affordances of this integration have been largely unexplored and there is little evidence base to draw upon. This project will address this issue by providing an educational rationale for integrating formal and informal learning supported by electronic tools.

Download Report

That's a lot of learning…

According to a report by Sheffield University the UK exported £28bn worth of learning in 2003-04.

That’s a lot of learning…

Full BBC Article

Teaching statistics

When I was told I had to teach statistics to a group Advanced GNVQ Business students many years ago I did wonder how I would approach it.

In the end I went with themed series of bitesize lessons.

Each lesson had a theme, some of these included:

Time Series – Toy Story, to infinity and beyond, could now use Doctor Who

Correlation – Indiana Jones

Regression – Star Trek

Dispersion and Range – Blackadder goes Forth

Normal Distribution – X-Files

Each lesson was self-contained and included theory and different kinds of assessment.

It seemed to work well, with students who years later still remembered many of the lessons.

As for copyright, well I was a different person then…

Can e-learning save money?

It is often thought that e-learning can be used in order to “replace” teachers and save money.

This is a bit of myth for virtually all educational institutions. e-Learning can’t replace teachers, you still need someone to facilitate and support the learning experience.

But e-learning can save money, let me give you an example.

Three local institutions deliver an A Level in Zebra Studies. They each deliver to five or six students.

Zebra Studies

If all three institutions can collaborate and deliver a single course in a mixed-mode delivery to the 15-18 students, then rather than three staff been paid to deliver, each institution only needs to pay a 1/3 of a member of staff.

You use e-learning to support and enhance the delivery. You use online discussions, video conferencing, podcasts, video webcasts, etc…

The students will benefit from the larger group, more so if students withdraw, withdrawals from a small group could mean not only a group which is unviable from a cost perspective, but also from a learning pespective – it is always difficult to break into groups of three when there are only four students!

Rooming costs will also be lower.

Institutions don’t need to be just FE colleges, they can also be schools, HE institutions as well as colleges.

Only a thought.

Also where there is cross curriculum areas, ie Customer Service, Finance, Health & Safety, groups could be combined in a single college to save on costs. A single cohort of twenty students instead of two groups of ten – actually that one doesn’t even need to use e-learning, just co-ordination!

Photo source.