Tuesday, April 29, 2014

My eLearning Personal Statement for Emerging eLeaders 2014 with Core Education

Arnika Brown eLearning Personal Statement

E-learning is extremely valuable to education. It is a broad term being used globally in education and refers to any kind of learning using ICT.

Schools need to ensure that the children have access to –

    • Up to date Information Communications Technology hardware and software to allow eLearning to happen successfully.
    • Qualified and trained staff to ensure learning is enhanced through the use of eLearning and ICT.

Using technology I have seen students succeed over and above what they would have without technology. E-learning gives students the chance to work beyond the classroom walls and construct knowledge they never had the opportunity to before. E-learning is not when paper is replaced with a tool. “Simply equipping students with their own devices and digitising existing curriculum is not the right approach.” (Dixon, B. et al, n.d.) It is when learning has no boundaries. When eLearning is empowering, students will be engaged in the following 21st century skills: Collaboration, Knowledge Construction, Self-Regulation, Real-world Problem-solving and Innovation, Use of ICT for Learning, Skilled Communication (ITL Research, n.d.)

It is not enough to provide the students and teachers with the concept of eLearning, there is a certain responsibility that comes with it. In order to implement eLearning successfully across the school, calculated steps need to be taken. Schools need to ensure they have a vision. Without vision it can be a long, windy, frustrating road to eLearning implementation. “Vision and goal setting is best done after first researching not only other 1:1 initiatives, but global and economic trends and the reality of the technology rich world in which today's students live.” (Dixon, B. (n.d). Retrieved from http://www.aalf.org/cms/?page=AALF - 21 Steps to 21st Century Learning)

Schools may also use a change model to ensure effective uptake of eLearning. As there will always be a range of adopters and learners, schools must ensure that they provide adequate support and guidance for all staff members.  Many innovations require a lengthy period of many years from the time when they become available to the time when they are widely adopted. Therefore, a common problem for many individuals and organizations is how to speed up the rate of diffusion of an innovation.” (Scott, 2012)

The eLearning Planning Framework includes really positive examples of how eLearning should be used. In order to ensure all schools are in the empowering phase, there must be a whole school approach. eLearning is not about 1 Teacher being passionate about ICT and sharing their experiences. It is about embedding it into the pedagogy and school culture.

E-learning supports all members of the school community to communicate and opens up opportunities for collaboration we have not ever had access to before.

Reference list:

Dixon, B. (n.d). Retrieved from http://www.aalf.org/cms/?page=AALF - 21 Steps to 21st Century Learning

Dixon, B. AALF. Teirney,S. Microsoft Corporation. (n.d) Bring Your Own Device to School. Microsoft Corporation. United States.

Innovative Teaching and Learning Research (n.d) 21st Century Learning Design Student Work Rubrics. Microsoft Corporation

Ministry of Education. (2013). eLearning Planning Framework. http://www.elearning.tki.org.nz/Professional-learning/e-Learning-Planning-Framework2

Scott. (2012) Diffusion of Innovation: The Difficulty of a New Idea. Retrieved from http://insidefinance.org/diffusion-of-innovation/