Friday, 29 June 2007

Where next with e-learning?


It was really good to meet/catch-up with you all on Wednesday. There are some follow-up bits-and-pieces with which Heather and I would really like you to engage, and I've outlined these below.

1. If you haven't already done so, contact your Faculty e-Learning Co-ordinator for a chat about using Blackboard. A list can be found at:

2. Read our e-Learning Guidelines at:

3. Do some thinking about the work we left you with: what are your e-learning strengths or interests? What tools/areas do you need more help with? What's your action plan? For more on Web 2.0, see:

4. At the moment Blackboard is being upgraded. It will be back on-line on Monday 16 July. At that point we will create a wiki in Blackboard for you to post your actions plans onto. We would appreciate it if you could post your own e-learning plan and comment on someone else's. Heather and I can then look to develop some support and guidance for you as a group.

If you could do this by the end of August that would be helpful - we can then try to get something in-place for next term.

Be good.


I was really sorry to miss the last day of this course. Unfortunately I wasn't well enough to make the journey, but I hope to re-do the third day in September.

I have already been singing the praises of this course to anyone I meet - I came away feeling inspired - especially by Day Two. The e-learning session was really interesting and just what I needed as I am very keen to get my course up on Blackboard and/or use a blog with distance learning students.

I was also very interested in the learning differences session - again, something I've long needed to know is how to access this sort of support for students.

One of the surprises for me was how the course actually reinforced that I do already know quite a bit about learning and teaching styles. I tend to forget that over many years of training and facilitating, I have picked up an awful lot. Being in a room with other lecturers and hearing of their experiences/views etc also made me feel more comfortable. Being new to DMU and a "proper" lecturing post, I had worried that I didn't know enough or have the right qualifications for the job, but now I feel more confident.

What I have learned, though, is that there is more I can do to plan the delivery of my lectures/workshops so that I am really focusing on the needs of the students - and that isn't necessarily all about me wading through reams of teaching material.

I particularly wanted to do the PBL session so if anyone has any feedback on that or can suggest any resources where I can find out more, please let me know.

I hope to be able to continue with the PG Cert in September so hopefully I will be seeing some of you again.

Best wishes for the summer - let's hope it gets a bit drier!


Thursday, 28 June 2007

Beginning to Reflect

On Day 3 of Planning to Teach and study you were asked to look back and reflect on the 3 days, using some of the following prompts. It would be really good to read some blog posts in response. Such reflection comments will be useful specifically for the Teaching in Practice module and generally, for an approach to what you do on the whole programme.



Think back to your positioning statement and/or your conceptions at the beginning of the module of

• yourself as a teacher,
• the role of the HE lecturer with regard to teaching, assessment and supporting learning
• teaching in your discipline and
• students and how they learn
• your views on using new technologies (e.g Web 2.0)

1. Have your ideas on any of these changed over the 2½ days – if so how?

2. What has caused these changes?

3. How might these conceptual changes impact on your practice?
You might wish to think about

• Designing a session or series of sessions
• How you lecture or facilitate seminars or workshops
• How you support students
• Working with diverse students
• Implementing use of Web 2.0 in your practice

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Spoon feeding students???

drjo said...
I was very concerned at the comments about the lecturers having to go find where the students are 'playing' at learning to try to capture their attention.They have to learn to work in the 'real world' and not some made up fantasy land where hours can be passed responding to each others arguments in a totally non-constructive 'learning environment'. The Web definatley has uses as an information source but not for endless 'pseudo-socialising' activitiesThe vocational courses I work with need mature professions with self discipline to adapt themselves to the teaching style of the lecturer not the other way round.
27 June 2007 01:19


Just to see if I could move into the blogging century

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

Our preliminary discussion on Web 2.0

It was good to meet you all today and to hear some of your thoughts on Web 2.0 and some of its defining features: engagement, interaction, sharing, collaboration

We ranged from Second Life..why? to speculating about how virtual interaction and application can actually effectively replace face-to-face.

Good questions arose which we can continue to can we use these technologies with our students? And indeed, when should we? We agreed that there was no point, 'just for the sake of it', or to try to impress! As with the choice of any learning method, learners, context, overall aims and desired outcomes have to be considered.

Yet Web 2.0 represents endless possibilities of interaction and collaboration; for the world of work, for example; getting a CV 'out there'; inviting feedback and shared experiences. There are indeed opportunites and threats-it's hard to ignore press coverage of lurking cyber menace -but, as someone said, this is only just the start.

Monday, 25 June 2007

Welcome to the 21st Century Dad.

Hmmm. This blogging business is all new to me and I may have to take some tips off my teenage daughter. I feel quite smug that I've successfuly negotiated the system so far and that my ancient (or so my daughter telles me) computer can handle it. Looking forward to meeting everybody tomorrow.

Hurrah - first ever blog entry completed - I think........... what to do next?? Oh yes - give it a title.
Hi everyone!
I'm Barbara Howard and I will be meeting you all tomorrow on the course. I am a Lecturer/ practitioner in Neonatal Nursing and I work between DMU and UHL (University Hospitals Leicester).

I come from a nursing and midwifery background and although I do have an academic degree it was a long time ago; one thing that has been brought home to me since starting my current job is the vastly different experience that undergraduate students have in education today. I am hoping this course will help me to utilise and understand some of these aspects of modern learning and embed them in my neonatal nursing modules.

See you tomorrow!

Charles Leadbeater and The Terminator

......those are the first two things i think of when i viewed these videos.

I think there is a massive potential for user involvement in everything especially the world of business as something like eBay has already demonstrated (hence the reference for Charles Leadbeater

The next trick is to get that same level of user interaction into learning. How? Not sure, but i hope we can learn to do some of that together over the next few days.

On to the Terminator reference - isn't some of this quite scary? Or is it just me? I suppose the power and potential of Web 2.0 makes me think about SkyNet! But i'd prefer to focus on the positive benefits of new technologies. Learning should be multi-way and therefore for it to reach its true potential we as the "leaders" of that learning have to find a way to fully engage our students. How? Again, not sure, but i look forward to the journey.

Thursday, 21 June 2007

thanks for the invite!

This is a new experience for me too! I am really interested in exploring how technology can assist in building learning communities of various types. I am currently co-authoring an e-learning module on leading and managing at a distance for the Scottish NHS, so experimenting with this sort of technology is very relevant to me.

I am very new to De Montfort and though I have taught on University courses before as an associate lecturer, I have had no formal education in teaching and learning at this level.

I mostly teach post graduates and the more mature students are often quite scared of technology, so I'd be interetsed to see how easy it is too engage them in media like this.

I loved the first video, by the way - it demonstrated how quickly and effectively information can be conveyed using this sort of medium - I would have switched off if it had been a text based article...... instead I was inspired. Just as an a experiment, I am going to add some stuff to this blog - a link, an image perhaps....

OK that went well. In the middle of doing this, I navigated away in error and the blog was automatically saved as adraft. After a few minutes' exploration, I got it back! Hoorah!

OK - to finish, here's a link to my current favourite website:

See you all next week.


Reflections on web 2.0 in learning and teaching

Hi Everyone
I am new to this technology, in fact this is the first blog I have ever made! As a lecturer in social work I can see that there is much potential in using blogs as a learning and teaching tool to augment existing teaching methods. But at the moment a lack of knowledge in both lecturers and students is a significant block as is our traditional views as to how learning should be facilitated in universites. In my brief experience some students expect to be spoon fed knowledge and can be resistant to being given more responsibility for taking a more pro-active approach to learning.
In my particular course it is important that students continue to learn together in each others presence as they learn alot about themselves and from each other. For example good face to face communication skills are fundamental to their professional role. But their learning could be developed further and perhaps deepened by the use of for example web based discussion groups.
Anyway I look forward to finding out more about what web 2.0 has to offer and how this might improve my ability to be a more effective lecturer/ tutor
See you next week

Tuesday, 19 June 2007


Hello everyone.

We'll meet next week on 26th, 27th and 28th June on Planning to Teach and Study, the three day-block that comprises the first part of the first module on the PGCertHE. Some of you will be attending the three days only as an introduction to some learning and teaching methodologies.

We're interesting in finding out your experiences and perceptions of various types of e-learning, in particular in relation to Web 2.0 technologies (e.g blogs, wikis, podcasts), and particularly, in their potential to help engage learners in HE.

Have a look at these short videos and record some of your own response to some of the ideas raised there in a blog entry (or entries)here.

What are your experiences of/reactions to using Web 2.0

What potential use of these do you envisage for your students
-or not, of course?

What aspects of Web 2.0 would you like to investigate further
for learning and teaching purposes?

We will pick up on some of your thoughts during the three days. Looking forward to meeting you.

Pam,Rachel,Heather, Richard, Martin and David.