Armellini, A., Howe, R. and Coulson, K. V. (2014) Effective online collaboration and academic skills within a transferable quality framework in Higher Education. Workshop presented to: Online Educa - 20th International Conference on Technology Supported Learning and Training, Berlin, Germany, 03-05 December 2014. (Unpublished)
This practical, hands-on workshop is for anyone responsibile for designing online learning courses and e-moderating student activity, or who is interested in setting up participative online groups of students in Higher or Further Education. It attracts academic and support colleagues who wish to maximise asynchronous student participation, as well as online and blended learning tutors who seek cost-effective, learner-focused environments to boost student engagement. Participants will experience what it is like to be an online learner for a day, by taking part in specific components of two exemplar courses. They will reflect on the process with a view to enhancing their own online and blended provision. This will be achieved in a relaxing, collegiate and fun learning environment that combines the benefits of online learning with those of sharing an intellectually challenging day with colleagues in face-to-face mode. Participants will be able to reuse the Creative Commons licensed content developed for this workshop in their own designs. The workshop is divided into three parts. Firstly, participants will be offered an opportunity to engage in Collaborative Learning Experiences Online (CLEO). CLEO is a key component of the University of Northampton’s HEA-accredited CPD Framework for academic and support staff, which is aligned with the UK Professional Standards Framework. Participants will be encouraged to work through short learning activities (e-tivities) that invite them to consider current developments in the field of online learning. CLEO has been run successfully at several universities in the UK, Ireland and Spain, both in English and in Spanish. In the second part, we will focus on how lessons learned during CLEOs and other interventions can help staff develop successful programmes, such as Study Skills for Academic Success (SSAS). SSAS has been developed for students in transition from school to university, and has been versioned for undergraduate and postgraduate students. It has been delivered four times, including as a massive open online course (MOOC). Participants will be invited to take part in a specific section of this MOOC and consider the possible application of a version of the course in their own institutional contexts. CLEO and SSAS have been designed in the CourseSites (Blackboard) environment. They both make use of a range of learning technologies, within and outside the VLE. In the third and final part of the workshop, we will present evidence of the impact that CLEO and SSAS have had at Northampton and discuss how they have influenced quality models. Links between these two interventions and other components of the CPD Framework will also be shared, including the CAIeRO learning design workshop, elsewhere known as Carpe Diem and the university’s quality framework for blended and online provision. During the workshop, there will be many opportunities to reflect, consult and review. Participants will be able to apply lessons learned from this workshop immediately. Facilitators will remain available for further discussion and feedback during the conference and beyond. This is a ‘bring your own device’ session. WiFi-enabled laptops are strongly recommended.