Blog Post 3.3

Desirable IT Skills for Teachers Developing DLT Courseware

Basic Skills (common teaching skills):

  • Adapt to new IT
  • Collaboration & communication tools
  • Information management knowledge
  • Interactive white board skills (e.g. SmartBoard)
  • Inspire students to IT greatness
  • Learn IT
  • Presentation tools
  • Spreadsheets skills
  • Web searching skills

Intermmediate Skills (easier technological skills):

  • Blogging knowledge
  • Google Earth knowledge
  • Google tools knowledge
  • Mobile and handheld computing
  • RSS feeds
  • Social bookmarking knowledge
  • Social networking knowledge
  • Web2.0 Tools
  • Web resources in content area
  • Wiki knowledge

Advanced Skills (harder technological skills):

  • Database skills
  • Video and podcasting
  • Virtual worlds
  • Website design and management skills

Kharbach, M. (2012) The 21st Century skills teachers should have. Educational Technology and Mobile Learning. Retrieved 1 March, 2012, from: http://educationaltech-med.blogspot.co.nz/2011/01/21st-century-skills-teachers-should.html

Turner, L. (2010) Technology Skills that Every Educator Should Have. Digital Learning Environments, NewBay Media LLC. Retrieved 1 March, 2012, from: http://www.guide2digitallearning.com/tools_technologies/20_technology_skills_every_educator_should_have

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Blog Post 3.2

DLT Role in an Organisation

The following Digital Learning Technologies are used at Massey University – in particular for aiding their distance learning courses:

  1. Moodle – This online learning management system is at the heart of Massey’s Virtual Learning Environment called Stream (What is Stream?, 2012). It allows the learning material for distance learners to be made available on a paper basis (much like EIT’s EIT Online, which also has Moodle as a basis). It also helps the administration of paper assessments.
  2. Adobe Connect – This has also been added to Massey’s Stream environment (What is Stream?, 2012), which allows lecturers and distance learning students to interact in virtual classrooms (much like what occurs during our DLT lectures at EIT).
  3. E-Journals – A lot of the journals available in Massey’s library in paper form are also available in electronic form (Getting hold of the journal articles, 2012), which can be accessed for free when logged in with your MyMassey login details. For distance learners, this allows the almost instantanous access of research material – instead of waiting about a week for a photocopy of the wanted journal article to arrive by snail-mail.

I’d just like to add that it seems the distance learning environment at Massey seems to have improved since when I was a Massey distance learner. I was a distance learner under their older WebCT online learning environment, which was pretty much used to inform you of important dates, provide interactive forums, conduct online assessments, and maybe have some downloadable material (most was sent out by snail-mail, and assessments had to be sent by snail-mail or courier – only students overseas were allowed to email their assignments). I found the library e-journals extremely useful though as a distance learner.

References:

Getting hold of the journal articles. (2012). Retrieved 8 March 2012, from: http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/research/library/help-and-instruction/how-to-find/journal-articles/getting-hold.cfm

What is Stream? (2012). Retrieved 8 March 2012, from: http://www.massey.ac.nz/massey/staffroom/teaching-and-learning/stream4students/what-is-stream/what-is-stream_home.cfm

Blog Post 3.1

Implications and Impact of DLT

School – For digital learning to be effective, access to broadband at home, not just at school, is needed (Ark, 2012) – parents of school kids may not see broadband as high on their list of priorities. Also, constantly changing software and hardware versions can make it tough for schools, and parents of schools kids, to keep up with digital learning tools – this can be seen in NZ where school kids have been encouraged to buy iPad2s, which are due to become obsolete in the next couple of weeks.

Polytechnic – Students at Polytechs (and Unis) tend to have better access to on-campus resources than school kids, so broadband and software/hardware issues are not as big here – except for the need for the learning centres to upgrade software and hardware. There is perhaps more pressure on Polytechs (and Unis) to deliver digital learning than schools, mainly due to off-campus learners. Digital learning material for off-campus students needs to be well designed, and provide strong guidelines for when work, and what kind of work, needs to be done (Bates, 2012).

University – Students at Unis (and Polytechs) tend to have better access to on-campus resources than school kids, so broadband and software/hardware issues are not as big here – except for the need for the learning centres to upgrade software and hardware. There is perhaps more pressure on Unis (and Polytechs) to deliver digital learning than schools, mainly due to off-campus learners. Digital learning material for off-campus students needs to be well designed, and provide strong guidelines for when work, and what kind of work, needs to be done (Bates, 2012).

Private Organisation – Constantly changing software and hardware versions can make it expensive for private organisations to keep up with digital learning tools – private organisations have to pay full software licenses (whereas educational institutions get academic discounts). Private organisations creating digital learning tools need to keep in mind that academic institutions are increasingly wanting targeted and customised solutions, which are still affordable and of high quality (Connections Education LLC, 2012).

[NB: I view Polytechs and Unis as being very similar, except for there being a bit of a difference in the levels of courses provided]

References:

Ark, T.V. (2012). 10 benefits & 10 concerns about the shift to digital learning. Retrieved 8 March, 2012, from: http://gettingsmart.com/blog/2012/02/10-benefits-10-concerns-about-the-shift-to-digital-learning/

Bates, T. (2012). A student guide to studying online. Retrieved 8 March, 2012, from: http://www.tonybates.ca/2012/02/29/a-student-guide-to-studying-online/

Connections Education LLC. (2012). Connections learning appoints two digital learning veterans to rapidly expanding organization. Retrieved 8 March, 2012, from: http://www.connectionsacademy.com/news/cl-appoints-two-digital-learning-veterans.aspx