Monday, 9 June 2008

BNE workshops on blended learning

Last week the first of a series of 5 workshops (26 staff in total) were done with the School of the Built and Natural Environment (BNE) to help staff develop their modules for the blended learning Degree in Construction Management which is due to start in Semester A 2008.

BNE will offer blended learning modules on their Construction Management course to their learners who will be on campus only for a limited time, allowing them to better combine learning and working (typical attendance at year five part time is one day per month).

This is a huge task, that will get done, but it will need time to get 35 modules fully developed. We will make a start next year, then roll out this approach further next years.

During the workshops it was not the technical aspects of Blackboard that was discussed, but mainly work on the approach to learning to follow. Discussion was also held on how to make learners self-reliant, how to make the mix between online and face-to-face activities and most importantly, how much time and resource the staff will need to develop materials. Some very interesting topics were identified during the workshops including:

  • How to present you courses so that they are personal, and inviting to learners?
  • Using and integrating online testing
  • Use of Wiki's to write collaboratively
  • How to get support for developing materials?
  • Who will develop materials? Staff? Support staff? Or do you just grab it from Merlot, Jorum, or Opencourseware?
  • How to support site visits

Five more workshops will be carried out before Semester A 2008 and after that we will be ready to carry out and adapt the workshop approach within other academic schools.

No comments: