2009 tread softly - dreams of elearning

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ALT-C presentation 2009 with Asher Rospigliosi of Brighton Business School. Tread softly looks at staff adoption of technology in HE.


  • 1. Tread softly: making secure steps towards wideradoption of pedagogically-focussed e-learning atBrighton Business SchoolSue Greener and AsherRospigliosi University of Brighton S.L.Greener@brighton.ac.uk A.Rospigliosi@brighton.ac.uk

2. Back story Learning and Teaching Fellowship grant, UoB Three phase project: Initiation Support Feedback It grew.Annual Learning and TeachingConference2009 ConferenceFriday 10th July 2009: From spark to flame 3. Research enquiry (dream?)Beginning with the perceived problem of adoption of new technologies by academic staffHow do experienced and new academics begin to fit e-learning into their personal pedagogies?Bringing a psychological and sociological perspective to the problem of adopting TEL - how does this offer us insight into wider technology adoption strategies?Could we help to enthuse, encourage, support those who were not natural early adopters? 4. Surfacing initial assumptions Rogers model (1962) of innovators, early adopters, earlymajority, late majority and laggards does it help? Moore (1991) crossing the chasm between early adoptersand the follower groups Anderson et al (1998), based on Geoghegan (1994) justtwo groups: early adopters (EA) and mainstream faculty(MF) Four factors stop us crossing the chasm/gap Ignorance of the gap The technologists alliance Alienation of mainstream faculty Lack of compelling reason to adopt 5. Where do you place yourself ontechnology adoption UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 6. What is your job? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 7. What VLE does your institution have? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 8. Who do you use TEL with? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 9. How long have you used TEL? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 10. Why did you take up TEL? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 11. Had you used TEL as a learner? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 12. What barriers did you face? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 13. What support might have helped? UofB (MF) CAL (EA) 14. Qualitative responses 1 how motivating it is What surprised them?when students learningbecomes fun EA: mainly positive MF: more negativelearning moves out of your control What didnt they like?colleague inertia EA: MF:It takes hours 15. What was familiar about this learningprocess? EA focussed on problems with software,crashes, problem solving MF focussed on time taken and related toease of use like learning Word only easier 16. What contradicted your prior beliefs? EA tended to find external responsescontradicted their prior beliefs:student confidence technology is ain using software istool not aalways lower than Isolutionexpect MF focussed on personal perceptions whichwere contradicted: that it would befound it morecomplicated and that I woulduseful and lessfail to understand itscary 17. When asked to reflect on the experience of first using new technology to enhance learning EA:its much more aboutpedagogy in myclassroom, not the regaining technologyconfidence enjoying learningnew skills again MF: some were excited about technology, some feelingover-stretched, some more relaxed than they were, foundroutines difficult to remember, some, as withtechnologists, focussed on learning not technology. No clear distinction with application of hindsight 18. Problems they faced1. Students digital literacy2. Staff resistance3. Technology seen as gimmick4. Lack of time to learn5. Pressure to conform to VLE6. Availability of software, hardwareNo distinction here between two groupsSome saw problems as politically based (institutional strategies, resourcing)Few saw problems in making sense of technologies in relation to learning and teachingEveryone in study had persisted with using new technologies 19. Examples of ideas offered for encouraging adoption Showcases, demonstrations, workshops/training show it is relevant and useful to improve experience of teaching and learning for both students and teachers No obvious distinction Guest speakers in best practice Contact with experienced colleagues,between our two groups buddying, coaching Sharing student feedback Strategies focus on Shadowing those with experiencepedagogic beliefs, Team-working Focussing on pedagogic gains (studentperceived usefulness, role motivation etc)modelling (how), Enthusing and encouraging Time to play (sandpits)experimentation, reward, Senior manager commitmentaccess to resource, Adopting technologies for peer assessment and feedbackpromoting awareness, Using less jargon-ridden language Relating adoption to promotion/careermainstreaming paths/staff review Small project funding Celebrating achievements, encouragement of scholarship 20. A touch more literature A more complicated Liao and Lu (2008)picture than we thought discuss TAM and Technology Acceptance alternates and deriveModel relative advantageand compatibility asdrivers to newtechnologies adoptionby teachers Compatibility? Withbeliefs, values, teachingphilosophy.. 21. So how can we better analyse the differentresponses of academics in relation to TEL? 22. So how can we better analyse the differentresponses of academics in relation to TEL? By teaching beliefs? Pedagogies in practice? student,teaching and content-centred (Greener 2008) By discipline? Becher and Trowler (1989) work on academictribes By sub-discipline, including hard/soft, urban/rural,convergent/divergent and pure/applied focus? (Trowler2009) By internet use? Peripherals, normatives, all-rounders andactive participants? (Eynon 2009) Are Eynons active participants similar to Drent andMeelissens personal entrepreneurs (2008)? Could other academic groupings be distinguished by skillsets (Deursen & van Dyk 2009) 23. Which leads us to the future of this project New staff engagement action learning project Profile analysis of academic staff in HE in relationto TEL. digital skillset degree of digital independence pedagogic beliefs openness to sharing and learning Practical application: not just focussing ontechnology adopters/champions . We need to tread softly in the mainstream andunderstand better how to meet their needs. 24. Had I the heavens embroidered cloths, Enwrought with golden and silver light, The blue and the dim and the dark cloths Of night and light and the half-light,I would spread the cloths under your feet: But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.William Butler Yeats