Open main menu

User:Leighblackall/Radical ideas for educational organisations

A series of concepts and ideas for educational organisations. Image: Lightening Cloud to Cloud by André Karwath.

I initially prepared these ideas for Claire Macken, to assist in her proposal to La Trobe University's Radical Learning Project.

After posting the slides to my blog, the ideas attracted wider interest.

I was invited by Allison Miller and Michael Coghlan to speak more about these ideas at their Designing Learning in the Digital Age workshop in Melbourne on Wednesday 13 March 2013. This page holds the slides and notes for this presentation and the concepts within.

Separate teaching & assessmentEdit

  • Make teaching a diverse and community engaged activity, open to anyone
  • Make assignments sophisticated, relevant, robust and reliable for assessment
  • Allow people to attempt assignments under their own direction
  • Offer tuition and assessment as fee for service as necessary
  • Enroll people when they present assignments that will pass
Pros
  • Opportunities for self directed learners
  • New revenue model
  • More flexibility
  • Minimises risk for people of mature age and career changing
  • Teaching events can be more dynamic and diverse
  • Increase retention and completion rates
Cons
  • Requires a change in accreditation procedures and administration
  • Increases emphasis on quality assessment, which can increase assessor workloads
  • Places change pressure on campus based lecturing practices
  • Requires significant professional development

Use WikipediaEdit

  • Edit Wikipedia, Commons, Wikibooks, Wikinews, Wikivoyage, Wikitionary, Wikispecies, Wikisource or Simple English Wikipedia for assignments==
  • Tutors engage in respective Wiki peer review processes
  • Trust the peer review to process to reduce marking workloads
  • Open courses on Wikiversity and open content on Wikimedia Commons to support the activities
  • Network to establish multi lingual resources and courses, peripheral participation and a community of practice
Pros
  • Activity has immediate social benefits
  • In depth use of the most important public information channels
  • Assessment workloads can be reduced
  • Wider community assist in maintaining copyright duediligence
  • Citations increase
Cons
  • Requires ongoing professional development
  • Support and governance structure is voluntary
  • Community engagement contributions are not measured or rewarded by Australian institutions
  • Copyright diligence can become an obstacle

Degrees by degreesEdit

  • The name for this idea was offer by Linda Pennan. I used to call it Enveloped Learning
  • Make events, activities, modules and subjects public facing and openly accessible
  • Allow people to accumulate credits toward badges, certificates and degrees
  • Put courses, certificates and degrees behind subjects
  • Market subjects, modules, events and activities like Adult and Community Education booklets
Pros
  • Community engagement becomes intrinsic to teaching activity
  • People can follow intrinsic interests more
  • Public wareness for subject and event offerings increase
  • More flexibility for students and faculty
Cons
  • Complex for students to navigate
  • 'Free market' of subjects could, if not managed, lead to professional skill and knowledge gaps in graduates
  • Difficult to establish continuity of courses

Feed forward learningEdit

  • Design assignments around the production of learning resources for the next generation of students
  • Reward quality assignments with discounts from fees
  • Include professional equipment in the fees
Pros
  • Opportunity for people to reduce study expense
  • Continuous improvement of learning resources
  • Opportunities for people to obtain professional equipment at reduced rates
Cons
  • Complex budgets around subjects
  • Subject budgets need to draw from areas that traditionally produce learning resources (or marketing work directed to educational media production)

Free learning, fee educationEdit

  • Make subjects openly accessible online, and where practical in f2f settings
  • Charge fees for tuition, assessment, events and accreditation services
  • Use the public funding for open course development, use the student fees for services
Pros
  • Can report socially sustainable activities
  • Public has access to free intellectual inquiry
  • Teaching practices become more engaged with the wider community
  • Resources can focus on assignment design and assessment
Cons
  • Challenges established norms based around fee-for-content economic models
  • New financial systems needed

Die LMS dieEdit

  • Select software and platforms for their conviviality and transferable skills
  • Decommission software that is proprietary, has little relevance to real world applications, or that serves only a bureaucratic purpose
  • Use popular platforms like Wikipedia, Youtube, Google, Skype as teaching and learning platforms
  • Gather data for learning analysis, auditing and reporting via open standard formats, open data, and open ID
  • Use an LMS for its true value...if any remains
  • Use the Internet-as-the-platform
Pros
  • Learning environments can become more intrinsically relevant to real world activity
  • Latent skills transfer more readily into the organisation, and out
  • Teaching, learning and assessment activity becomes more convivial with the wider public
  • Chance to redirect resources into more valuable investments
Cons
  • Sunk cost losses
  • Significant adjustment of professional development direction and support
  • Complex teaching and assessment methodologies
  • Creative ways of reporting to audits necessary

A crisis for institutions is an opportunity for individualsEdit

  • Individualise teaching practice
  • Market the teacher, researcher, subject and the course, not the organisation alone
  • Teachers and researchers work with the institution, not for the organisation
  • Teachers, students and partners retain full ownership of their IP
  • All IP presented through the institution becomes CC By
  • Opting out of CC By alerts protection and comercialisation processes
Pros
  • Teachers have direct ownership and responsibility for their subjects - and so a motivation
  • Teachers are more readily recognised and rewarded for quality work
  • potential commercial opportunities are easily identified through optout process
  • Marketing resources are directed to assisting core business activities
Cons
  • The need to retain staff to subjects becomes imperative
  • institution looses some control of its over-all brand
  • More support resources needed for the focus on subjects

Student authored open textbooksEdit

  • Assignments to write, edit or review chapters of an ideal textbook, authored in Wikibooks.org
  • Best chapters go through to PediaPress print on demand books annually
  • Best books go through design for publishing in Lulu.com for ePub and print on demand
Pros
  • Text books are continuously updated and relevant to student interests
  • Textbook production and consumption costs reduced
  • Assignments more relevant
  • Social sustainability report item
  • Royalty-based fund raising opportunities
Cons
  • Achieving and maintaining quality takes time
  • Early generation students have less resolved text
  • Support resources for staff and students needed, such as marketing, and academic recognition

Use marketing budgets on educationEdit

  • Take the budget of a billboard campaign
  • Use it to produce videos of or for a subject
  • Load the videos to Wikimedia Commons, Youtube and iTunesU
  • Number of downloads is the return on investment as per a billboard's number of drive-bys
  • Make billboards location aware and educational
  • Make all signage and advertising an educational resource in some way
  • NEVER lower the organisation, it's discipline or it's teaching and research to base branding, nonsensical and unrelated imagery or dishonest messages
Pros
  • Marketing connects with core business activities
  • More resources to the production of educational resources
  • Organisation has an ethical stance toward marketing
  • More sustainable and tenable marketing outputs
Cons
  • Risks disruption to the current marketing effort
  • Makes marketing work more accountable
  • Organisation branding message is more complex

Take the lead in open accessEdit

  • Celebrate open access week
  • Make research publications open access, and generate open data
  • Practice open governance
  • Make courses and subjects open access (at least online)
  • Use copyright licenses that permit attributed re-use
  • Be the leading institution for open academic practices
  • Open a Creative Commons Australia Branch
  • Open a Wikimedia Australia Branch
Pros
  • Institution establishes a real pointof-difference in being public and Commons-based
  • First-to-market in terms of developing and maturing new business models, and the capacity to leverage them
  • Positioning for an obvious future going by legislative developments, and public interest
Cons
  • Significant professional development required
  • New executive and admin staff needed, who have the experience and outlook needed to establish the organisation's position
  • New policy and procedures needed

Phantom FacultyEdit

  • A course and subject incubation space
  • A place where specifically cross disciplinary subjects can be developed and pitched for real faculty adoption
  • A place where subjects can run, where there is not a faculty that is able to adopt it
  • A place where faculty hosted subjects can move out to if needing development and an incubation period
Pros
  • New and innovative subject ideas can have an accredited home, where the current faculty base cannot host it (sustainability, indigenous and cross cultural studies, literacy, social media..)
  • Old and failing subjects can reinvent themselves before loss
  • Innovative staff can develop their ideas and collaborate
  • New staff can enter the institution's employment by demonstrating their work
Cons
  • Fund transfer, based on student numbers + development grants, risks competing with the faculties
  • Phantom Faculty shelters nonviable subjects for too long
  • New performance measures needed, prompting fairness issues with the faculties
  • Consistency issues for service to students

Don't worry about people stealing ideasEdit

  • if it is original, you'll have to ram it down their throats