My Personal TEL Mission Statement

Technology Enhanced Learning  (TEL) is “a thing” in the OU at the moment. I have no idea what folk (think they) mean by it.

Here’s what I mean by it, in the form of my own, ad hoc eTEL – emerging technology enhanced learning – mission statement.

What I aspire to is:

  • explore how we might be able to use and repurpose emerging technology to support distance education;
  • use the technology we teach our students about to deliver that teaching;
  • use the technology we teach our students about to support that teaching;
  • use the technology we teach our students about to produce the courses we are teaching;
  • expose our students to emerging technologies that they can take and use in the outside world.

This obviously raises tensions, particularly where courses take two years to produce and then ideally (in the eyes of the organisation) remain unchanged for 5 years. The first step is risky, because it means trying new ways of doing things. The last step relates to my belief that universities should be helping push new ideas, technologies, techniques and processes out into society using our students as a vector.

2 comments

  1. cpjobling

    How do you ensure that the emerging technology will be established technology after graduation? In computing, we hung in to Pascal as a first language even though it was hardly used in industry. Later, we continued to teach Java long after industry seemed to have moved to Ruby, Python and JavaScript. In my context, all the research computing is done in Fortran yet we teach our students Matlab and our employer advisory boards tell us they want ladder logic!

    Also, isn’t the appropriate technology topic dependent? For some subjects, the tech the students need might actually be still Office!

    • Tony Hirst

      “How do you ensure that the emerging technology will be established technology after graduation?”
      You take a punt.. which in part depends on how good you are at spotting tech trends. Also, my opinion is our teaching should be a form of model/ing behaviour, in particular modelling how to explore/use/appropriate a current/emerging technology as part of the course delivery medium. Dogfooding the subject matter of the course in the way we produce and deliver it. (Note, my focus is tech courses…)

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