Archive for the ‘Evaluation’ Category

Update on conceptual learning design tools

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

A number of things appear to becoming together - at least in my mind! - in terms of working towards a coherent set of conceptual learning design tools. I’ve blogged about lots of this before, but thought this post would be useful in terms of bringing some of this up to date. Interesting these ideas are currently spanning a number of projects/research work I am involved with. Clearly this work fits in terms of the overall ideas about adopting a learning design-based methodology and the associated tools/resources/activities to support this. Institutionally this work is currently being driven through our Course Business Models work. Externally aspects of this are feeding into the Design-Practice project we have with Cyprus and Greece and the X-Delia project on financial decision making. Below is a powerpoint presentation showing five conceptual design views of a ‘learning intervention’ - this could be something like an informal learning iphone app (as in this example) or a formal educational course or programme.

The five views are:

  • Learning intervention overview (or Course map view)
  • Pedagogy profile
  • Course dimensions
  • Task swimlane
  • Learning outcomes map

I talked about some of this in detail in a recent networked learning paper and associated powerpoint presentation (Cloud on Cloudworks on the seminar this was part of is here). I think what is exciting about this is that the five ‘views’ give you a means of thinking about a learning intevention at different levels of granalarity and different aspects.

We have particularly made significant progress in the last few weeks I feel on the course dimensions view. I had an excellent brainstorming session on this last week with Mick Jones (who is leading the next phase of our Course Business Models work), Barbara Poniatowska and Kevin Mayles (who are involved in a related project on e-learning data. We have an internal workshop with staff from across the faculty on Friday to get their views on the work to date, how it might be used/improved and how it can be taken forward.

I used the views this week in a brainstorming session with Gill Clough (who is the lead reseacher on our part of the X-Delia project)  in terms of trying to map a learning intervention for an i-phone games app about financial decision making. The views worked surprisingly well. The powerpoint presentation with the five views is below, thoughts welcome!

Health check game

View more presentations from grainne.

WWWrong with e-learning?

Tuesday, October 9th, 2007

I was recently at an interestingly entitled conference workshop “WWWrong: What Went Wrong? What Went Right? Exchanging Experiences in Technology Enhanced Learning”. Draft proceedings are available to download. The focus was on trying to tease out and address the problems associated with trying to develop and implement e-learning/TEL. Themes that the workshop explored included:

  • How to learn from past experience
  • Unexpected consequences and strategies for recovery
  • Emerging patterns in challenges produced when implementing Technology Enhanced Learning
  • TEL is more than just technology, what are the relevant social issues and barriers?
  • Hard-learned lessons we don’t hear about
  • What are the challenges that even successful projects have faced?
  • The value of risk taking - how to take risks, and manage the consequences
  • Meta Learning from our successes and our failures
  • As many of us are only too aware funding mechanisms mean that there is a tendency to focus on the positive outcomes from projects, whereas we are also only too aware of the limitations of the projects we are involved with. This isn’t necessarily a failing on the part of those involved, in reality we know all this stuff is complex and dependent on a range of inter-connected factors. Better articulation of the failures and sharing of the issues might just help… But are we brave enough to put our heads above the parapet?

    The workshop was a useful start – there were seven presentations sharing a range of different ‘war stories’. My focus was a personal reflection on four very different evaluations I have been involved with in recent years – ranging from a large-scale, national intervention (the UK e-University … ) through to more localized educational and technological interventions. I think the workshop has the potential to draw out some valuable lessons and I look forward to the follow up! Oh and the venue was pretty wonderful… Crete… I could quite happily spend a sabbatical there writing some esoteric book that no one will ever read… OK, OK I know dream on…