Lifelong learning in a digital age: New audiences, new needs, new approaches #JISCEL12

Lifelong learning in a digital age: New audiences, new needs, new approaches #JISCEL12

Marion Manton, Oxford 

 

4 years – every programme uses technology in some way, but in very different ways – the magic words ‘efficiency gain’.

A weekend/few days of study a few days a term, rather than having to come to Oxford every week. Opened up the study wider.

Oxford programme information.

Lots of learners would say that they would prefer face-to-face, but you can see learners who realise that online learning allows more participation and see them won over.

  • The importance of administrative support
  • Lots of questions about anonymous marking – for & against
Susie Schofield:

my personal view on anonymous marking is we need to educate those for it of the benefits of non-anonymous marking and if there are problems with the ‘mark my work not my face’ then we need some serious faculty development

Alison Felce: what does responsiveness mean to your context/organisation? 

Students need to understand that universities cannot provide an endless range of courses to meet personal requirements.

Do students/the market know best?

Dave Middleton

@Mark in most disciplines there is a body of research which has bulit up over many centuries, would market research and/or employers understand that, or should we ditch the canon entirely?

Emma Purnell: Illustrations of Adult Learners and Digital Literacy

Access and support to students for digital literacy important, as not all had access to the on-site infrastructure.

Be mindful that most lifelong learners are very task-focused – they just want the technology that will help them get the job done, and they want it to work. [Keith Mildenhall – the ‘out of the box’ test.] They also may have different access issues at their institution..

Nathan Cobb:

I work in an FE College where we have both teenage and mature learners – without completely re-hashing the digital natives theme I don’t notice a significant difference – we have confident and less confident learners in both age groups

Interestingly, we have a cohort of mature learners on our access to HE programme this year who are very digitally literate and have been frustrated by ILT literacy levels of their tutors

Susie Schofield

@peter I created an induction module which takes them through the whole process. We also have screenrs and a dedicated technologist who supports them via email / phone etc

Christa Appleton

I think its better not to generalise digital literacy its not simply age related

Marion Manton

I think global cofidence with tech has massively improved in the last few years

I think as people use tech more for all areas of life the happier and more confident they are about using it for learning

Alison Felce

We found that literacy wasn’t related to age – there is a wide variation for all sorts of factors – most commonly lack of confidence has a big impact on apparent literacy.

Anne McDermott

We have found that some younger students’ belief about their skills becomes a barrier to their learning i.e. they cant understand why they are having difficulties and swithch off

Dave Middleton

@Anne that is a really good point. I’ve noticed that people who are very confident cannot cope with digital failure.

Clare Killen

90 year old farmer asked for internet-abled PC for his birthday so he could skype and communicate with grandchildren overseas. Unusual but he had the motivation to do it.

Interesting point – digital literacy is often not a problem with students, but a problem with staff…

“some of the staff in this area are “CAVE” people (Colleagues Against Virtually Everything) – they attend the training but simply make no attempt to use it”

Merv Stapleton

@Nathan – CAVErs are everywhere – very difficult to sell them the benefits of tech – or any way of doing anything that is different to what they already do

Becky Thomas

We are all individual and have our own comfort zones – what does it take for people to explore and extend their own comfort zone?

Re students printing off online courses then not returning to the VLE:

Marion Manton

@gavin the key is to make sure your course is less content and more activities that gets them online – but you are right some will do that

Nathan Cobb

@Gavin this is exactly why a VLE course needs to build and develop dymatically so learners have to interact with it

Susie Schofield

@Gavin we have made our course available in different modalities to suit individual learner needs so e.g. a Camtasia presentation will also be available as a podcast, word document and pdf

Some courses then offer extra support in the first couple of weeks – which find pays back over the course as more confident users/less tech queries. May include ‘compulsory’ discussions online to ensure students are using the materials.

Sue Lewis

We have been working with adults in the work place helping them map their skills and experiences to a set of skills required in HE (taken from something called the CogenT toolkit). Has been very successful in helping adults recognise their potential for higher level study. Not have an elctronic mapping tool for this called HE Skills Map. Useful at engagement stage but also helps them collect evidence for admissions and APeL.

Clare Killen – re ‘tech-savvy’ youngsters…

@Ruth – good point. They may be literate but don’t know how to use it to support their learning.

Marion Manfield then referring us to Dave White’s idea of ‘Digital Visitors’ – they just want to get in, do what they need to online, and don’t want to faff around with Facebook, etc.. Me:

Noting with ODHE project that if a reason to use it they will- but if try and persuade them they should be using Twitter/FB, etc. most don’t get it – but tech tools that help them with e.g. travel, etc. are a way in ..

JISC LifeLong Learning publication, and other information. WBL Toolkit. Continue discussion (delegates!).

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