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Adoption of Technology Enhanced Learning in Higher Education: Influences of Institutional Policies and Practices Dr. Gale Parchoma.

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Presentation on theme: "Adoption of Technology Enhanced Learning in Higher Education: Influences of Institutional Policies and Practices Dr. Gale Parchoma."— Presentation transcript:

1 Adoption of Technology Enhanced Learning in Higher Education: Influences of Institutional Policies and Practices Dr. Gale Parchoma

2 Organization of this presentation Questions are definitely welcome at any point, I struggle to keep up with answering both verbal questions and chat questions. So I have inserted Questions and Comments (Q&C) slides between sections of this presentation. When we reach a Q&C slide, please remind me if I have missed questions, especially ones posted in the Chat. Quick Note: I want to work through the first section on the study, questions, and literature review quite quickly because I think the more interesting stuff is in the findings.

3 The Context & Purpose of the Study One research-oriented western Canadian university –Involved in a 5-year Provincially funded program ( ) to increase the use of technology enhanced learning (TEL). Comparison of macro (provincial), mezzo (university), and micro (individual faculty members) goals and measures of TEL success. In-depth look at driving and restraining forces that influenced the success of individual projects.

4 The Questions 1.What are the motivations for faculty members to adopt technology enhanced learning (TEL) into teaching praxis? 2.Does the adoption of TEL influence faculty members scholarship of teaching? If so, how? 3.What are the returns on investment for faculty members time devoted to TEL? 4.To what extent do institutional structures, cultures, and policies support or impede success?

5 Literature Review 1 Organizational Structure Pre-TEL Post-TEL

6 Literature Review 2 Cultures Pre-TEL Post-TEL

7 Literature Review 3 Pedagogies Pre-TELPost-TEL

8 Literature Review 4 Economies (Reward Systems) Pre-TELPost-TEL

9 Questions & Comments ?

10 Participants & Research Design All study participants were members of TEL development teams Stage 1: 8 instructional designers from three organizational units Focus groups Selection of information-rich cases Stage 2: Piloting the faculty interview protocol One faculty member revisions to the protocol Stage 3: 8 Faculty Interviews 8 Narratives Common themes Stage 4: Environmental scan of documentation corroboration with interview data

11 Research Design: Purposeful Sampling Stage 1 Identify critical, typical, and politically sensitive cases 1.Faculty-ID dissonance 2.ID-Media/IT dissonance 3.Faculty-Media/IT dissonance 4.Confounding factors (outside the control of TEL team members ability to resolve Stage 2 Pilot of the faculty interview protocol

12 Stage 3: Faculty Interviews 8 Cases – Diverse disciplines, Diverse Projects Researcher as a complete- member researcher 1.Dental education (undergraduate, CE, and intra- disciplinary programs) 2.3 rd Year Veterinary medical education 3.Teacher education (graduate & undergraduate) Researcher as an aware observer 4.Nursing education (undergraduate) 5.Native Studies (undergraduate) 6.Multi-disciplinary professional graduate degree in International Trade 7.Psychology (undergraduate super-class) 8.Computer science (graduate and undergraduate)

13 Questions & Comments ?

14 Stage 3: Data Analysis Identifying themes (1) –Departmental initiatives for curricular development, standardization, renewal, and refinement –Pedagogical innovation – keeping the fire (of student engagement in learning) alive –Providing students with more flexible access to learning opportunities –Integrating research into teaching Question 1: Faculty members motivations for involvement in TEL projects?

15 Stage 3: Data Analysis Identifying themes (2) Question 2: Changes to the scholarship of teaching influenced by TEL? –Increased use of tutorials in TEL projects also influenced change in classroom-based instruction –Online discussion as an avenue to engage learners –Encourage independent learning through the use of TEL self-study modules for knowledge acquisition + free up classroom time for in- depth discussions –Move away from traditional, lecture-based instructional approaches and toward more flexible access to student-centered, independent, collaborative, and small-group mentorship –New or heightened interest in learning theory and researching educational effectiveness

16 Stage 3: Data Analysis Identifying themes (3) Question 3: Academic returns on investment for faculty time committed to TEL innovations? –Inadequate time, compensation, & recognition for time commitments –TEL projects may have compromised the ability to earn tenure and/or achieve promotion The pay off for doing this is intellectual and intellectual alone. There is really no pay off. You do your regular job and then add this on. –Existing intellectual property policies are tailored to support and recognize print-based publications, but do not address faculty concerns about fair returns on investment for time spent developing and/or publishing TEL artifacts

17 Stage 3: Data Analysis - Identifying themes (4) Question 4: The extent to which institutional structures, cultures, and policies supported or impeded successful design, development, and delivery of TEL projects? Supportive +TEL funding and Provincial professional support +Additional financial resources and support staff provided by colleges or departments Mixed Feelings About… ±Instructional design & media production support ±Support from university administration ±Collegial skepticism, fear, or misunderstanding of TEL as a cultural barrier Impeding –Lack of ongoing technical, administrative, and maintenance support –Dealing with third-party copyright and local intellectual property policies –Lengthy approval processes for new programs –Coping large development teams & shifting team memberships …The need to plan cost-recovery approaches and marketing strategies

18 Environmental scan of TEL documentation Corroboration with a province-wide study of multiple higher education institutions Faculty Motivations (1)Responding to institutional and/or departmental initiative (2)Course content development or renewal (3)Enhancing and expanding opportunities for student learning experiences. TEL influences on changes to teaching (1) Increasing independent learning skills (2) Providing scheduling flexibilities (3) Providing a better/enriched learning experience (4) Identified need for research into quality and effectiveness of new approaches Return on Investment (1) Lack of faculty time as a large institutional barrier (2) Lack of institutional incentives or recognition for faculty efforts Institutional structures, cultures, and policies (1)Concerns that TEL undermines quality of teaching and learning (2) Lack of ongoing technical and administrative support (3) Concerns about intellectual property and copyright

19 Questions & Comments ?

20 Discussion: (1) Organizational Structures & Functions Divergent Macro-Micro-Mezzo-level measures of success: –Macro – Quantity (Target = 2000 TEL projects in 5 years) –Mezzo – Accountability (Each project on time and within budget) –Micro – Quality (Educational effectiveness) Divergent Mezzo-Micro goals –Mezzo – Valuing research, publication, clinical duties, advising grad students, classroom teaching over TEL activities –Micro – Focus on TEL development and innovation in teaching Tensions between bureaucratic and autonomous organizational functions as barriers –Mezzo-Micro tensions - the one-size-fits-all approach to TEL project development –Mezzo-Micro tensions - curricular standardization led to disputes about relative levels of academic freedom based on employment status

21 Discussion: (2) Organizational Cultures Poly-cultural nature of the academy –Variant levels of skepticism, fear, and a misunderstanding of technology enhanced learning across college settings Provision of resources for research / evaluation activities as core components of TEL development projects could mediate these concerns Dissemination of information from early adopters experiences –Recognize and respect differences in collegial settings and pedagogical cultures across the institution Implication –A high level institutional e-learning strategy, combined with a customized set of e-learning sub-strategies, which respond effectively to variant College cultures and their specific needs

22 Discussion: (3) Organizational Economies (Institutional Reward Systems) Lack of institutional recognition and rewards The relatively public and pervasive nature of TEL: A sense of vulnerability / quest for perfection A significant time investment in content literature reviews & consultation with peers Time commitments to innovation: design and development process Expanded time commitment competes with existing scholarly duties Problematic intellectual property policies Implications –Revised tenure and promotion criteria & intellectual property policy

23 Discussion: (4) Pedagogical Praxis Information-sharing across disciplines and colleges, for example: Blended learning approaches to small-group tutorials Use of peer-to-peer discussions and collaborative activities to support deep learning Criteria for selecting appropriate curricular content for independent study Implications –Interdisciplinary discourse on TEL experiences may be able to advance the quality of teaching & learning in higher education (TEL & classroom-based) –Interdisciplinary & intra-cultural programs may be the next big pedagogical challenges in TEL

24 Feedback from students in the LU e-Research and TEL Doctoral Summer 2008 Programme Critiques Universities do not take even small problems lightly. It is difficult to make room for experimentation and prototyping, thus allow for even small failures in TEL programs. Wide adoption of TEL may change the image of the Academy. Is this a good thing? Or could it cause an erosion of loyalty to home institutions? Comments E-learning has followed a similar developmental path in the UK & EU. It is now mainstream across institutions. The focus has moved from technological concerns to pedagogy, content, quality assurance and standards, teacher/trainer training and continuous development, organisational change and the transformation of education and training to align with TEL processes.

25 Questions & Comments ?

26 Parchoma, G. (2008). Adoption of technology enhanced learning in higher education: Influences of institutional policies and practices. Saarbrücken, Germany: VDM Verlag Dr Gale Parchoma Lecturer: Educational Research, CSALT Research Group RM C59 County South Lancaster University Telephone: +44 (0) 1524 (5)94695 Tel. from Canada: Thanks for your time!

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