Archive for the ‘E-læringsstrategi’ Category

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Conference on ICT and Innovative Learning Environments in Danish Universities

August 19, 2010

Today I attended the first day at the Conference on ICT and Innovative Learning Environments in Danish Universities. This is what I found useful and took with me.

Danish Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Charlotte Sahl-Madsen, opened with a speech.

The most interesting part of her speech was her announcement of a new network: “In the wake of the conference today, I will establish a national network ensuring exchange of best practice within the field of ICT-supported learning.” 

The need for this network was strongly supported by Lone Dirckinck-Holmfeld (Dekan for the humanistic faculty, AAU) who addressed the issue that  Denmark is currently in the top five in the Network Readiness Index, but NO Danish universities are number one.

Renate Fruchter (founding director of Project Based Learning Laboratory, Stanford University, USA) also commented on the Minister’s initiative. She said that it appears that Denmark is a place where things are happening, not just talking about things that should happen. Renate Fruchter opened her speech with this acknowledgement: “Madame Minister, you are such a role model”.

Renate Fruchter and her research team has developed what she referred to as “a working educational model for cross-disciplinary global teamwork”. The ingredients in this are:

  • PBL Lab
  • R & D
  • Educational Strategy

PBL global teamwork consists of theory and ethnographic observations, practice in classes and industry, and collaboration with technologies and services.

Renate Fruchter stated that any educational working model is “as good as people using it”.

Furthermore, that we are NOT dealing with “neat disciplinary problems”, but rather “complex interdisciplinary challenges”.

Also, she claimed: “The Millenniums are here” (i.e. born digital)

All Renate Fruchter’s and her research teams projects involve fire P’s (P5BL Lab): People, problem, process, project, product.

Furthermore, each project involves: Develop, test, deploy and assess.

The goal is: “To be world leaders in global teamwork”.

The P5BL Lab is cross-disciplinary and involves: architects, management and engineers.

Each project is about “crossing the four chasms”:

  1. Discipline
  2. Technology
  3. Time/space (e.g. you can actually squeeze 3 days into 24 hours in a project including people from all over the world)
  4. Culture (both national, local, technological and organizational)

One example of the models developed by Renate Fruchter is “The fishbowl learning” which comes from a model in natural sciences where e.g. medical procedures carried out by doctors are put on display in a lecture hall encircled by glass (i.e. a fishbowl).

Renate emphasised that a foundational premise in her projects is: “That learning happens in all directions” (i.e. not just from an instructor to a learner)

Important matters to Renate Fruchter are:

  • scalability
  • sustainability
  • assessment

P5BL is an evolving ecosystem consisting of: people, places, ICT, devices and network infrastructure. It is a M3R: Mixed Media Mixed Reality.

Renate Fruchter commented that many teachers abandon computers and phones from classes: “If you think that if my body is there, then my mind is there too…”

It is important to consider the challenges as they unfold differently for:

  • learners
  • educators
  • institutions

The four stages of P5BL, are according to Renate Fruchter:

  • Experiment course
  • sustain (not just a professor with a great idea for a couple of years)
  • Institutionalize
  • constant reinvention             

I really liked Renate Fruchter’s emphasis on both culture and reinvention. Furthermore, what seems really interesting about the P5BL Lab is the focus on people, problems, projects, products and processes as a joint venture between students, teachers and industry in global teams.

Phillip Long (Professor of Innovation and Educational Technology, founding director of the Centre for Educational Innovation and Technology, University of Queensland, Australia) talked about “how does a university establish a culture of open scholarship and engage students in legitimate peripheral disciplinary participation? In is necessary to switch between “learning to be” and “learning about” he claimed. He showed a thought-provoking video “A vision of students today” that was coproduced by the students.

I just checked the Digital Ethnography work groups home page, which is where the video can be found, and this is definitely a recommendable place to visit for inspiration on how to integrate video into our university teaching practices.

Another instance of how videos are actively finding their ways into Danish Universities was illustrated by Per Holten-Andersen (Dean at The Faculty of Life Sciences). Just try to search for videos and Copenhagen University. You will find a lot of commercial videos on YouTube with an international approach. LIFE is another example of a strong emphasis on the global aspects of knowledge exchange and collaboration. “The Faculty developed its language policy nine years ago and adopted a ten-year implementation plan, i.e. the policy shall be fully implemented by the year 2010.” This is among other represented in the fact that LIFE offers information for international students in 20 languages.

While most speakers were concerned with ICT, Morten Misfeldt ‘s(Associate professor at Department of Curriculum Studies, DPU) speak was notably concerned with the flexibilities that are built into (or not) the physical frames and study environments of universities.

As Hanne LethAndersen (Professor and managing director of CBS Learning Lab) commented: when considering ICT in Danish universities it is central that we look at differentiated incitements, because there exist large differences between educational programmes e.g. whether they represent small or big areas. Furthermore, she stated that we need to take more than ICT and the physical environment into consideration. Also subject area, educational models and goals/objectives, and many other things must be taken into consideration. Furthermore, she stated, students are not just learners. They are also producers and creators, and how do we acknowledge these contributions? (e.g. in the assessment system).

Jørgen Bang (associate professor at Information and Media Studies, AU) stated that in 2007 the European Union and politics went from a focus on e-learning to a focus on lifelong learning, which means that universities need to look not only into the ICT-support related to the everyday conduct of teaching activities, but also into how ICT may take part in creating new educational possibilities in a lifelong learning perspective. According to Jørgen Bang, Danish universities need to put more focus on and emphasize lifelong learning as an integrated aspect of the further development of Danish universities.

Associated with this, Simon Heilesen (associate professor in net media and  computer-mediated communication, RUC) underlined that Roskilde University has moved away from the term e-learning and instead they are referring to “academic IT” (i.e. using ICT where it is meaningful not only in relation to the educational programs but also in administration, as support for research etc.).

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New ICT-barometer and action plan aimed at strengthening basic ICT-skills

December 14, 2007

Today the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (VTU) announced a new action plan for the strengthening of the Danish citizens’ basic ICT-skills (Source: http://get.dav.itst.rackhosting.com/Publikationer/Danskernes_it-faerdigheder/index.htm). The initiatives mentioned in the new action plan is especially targeted the so-called ICT-weak groups in the Danish population with no or low ICT-skills.  

The action plan is the result of a survey about Danish citizens’ (16 years or older) digital literacy. The survey was conducted and reported by the National IT and Telecom Agency (“Borgernes IKT-færdigheder i Danmark” January, 2007). According to the report approx. 40 % of the Danish population have no or low ICT-skills (more info about the report in Danish see IT- og Telestyrelsen: http://www.itst.dk/e-laering-og-it-faerdigheder/publikationer/borgernes-ikt-ferdigheder-i-danmark/Borgernes%20IKT-ferdigheder%20i%20Danmark.pdf ). The ministry announces that the survey conducted by the National IT and Telecom Agency will form the new national ICT-barometer.

According to the report about the Danish citizens’ digital literacy (p. 14) the survey takes point of departure in a concept of “ICT literacy” that is defined as a combination of technical skills and cognitive skills:

“ICT literacy cannot be defined primarily as the mastery of technical skills. The panel concludes that the concept of ICT literacy should be broadened to include both critical cognitive skills as well as the application of technical skills and knowledge. These cognitive skills include general literacy, such as reading and numeracy, as well as critical thinking and problem solving. Without such skills, the panel believes that true ICT literacy cannot be attained. (Source: “Digital Transformation – Framework for ICT literacy”, ETS, 2002, page 1: http://www.ets.org/Media/Tests/Information_and_Communication_Technology_Literacy/ictreport.pdf)

It seems to me, that with an approach emphasizing cognitive skills, it is not a coincidence that the (international) panel’s definition of ICT literacy is also focusing on information, and that the overall aim is formulated as empowering people (individuals) to function in a knowledge society:

“ICT literacy is using digital technology, communication tools, and/or networks to access, manage, integrate, evaluate, and create information in order to function in a knowledge society.” (Ibid., p. 3)

The question is whether this concept and imaginary of digital literacy is indeed useful for the purpose of creating knowledge about whether Danish citizens are empowered to use ICT and digital media in today’s as well as tomorrow’s knowledge society?

Professor of education David Buckingham (Centre for the Study of Children, Youth and Media, London Knowledge Lab) is just one example of an internationally acknowledged media researcher who argues that when dealing with ICT and digital media it is crucial to be aware of the fact that we are not simply dealing with matters of information, technologies, and their functionalities.

According to David Buckingham “most discussions of digital literacy remain primarily preoccupied with information – and therefore tend to neglect some of the broader cultural uses of the internet… From this perspective, a digital literate individual is one who can search efficiently, who compares a range of sources, and sorts authoritative from non-authoritative, and relevant from irrelevant, documents… there is little recognition here of the symbolic or persuasive aspects of digital media, or the emotional dimensions of our uses and interpretations of these media, or indeed of aspects of digital media that exceed mere <<information>>” (Source: Buckingham, David, “Defining digital literacy: What do young people need to know about digital media?”, p. 266. Published in Digital Kompetanse, 4-2006, pages 263-276).

In a highly digitalized society like Denmark, we are continuously faced with multiple new media and media convergences. It is imperative that we include the emergent competencies that empower people to critically approach and engage in activities with new forms of media, and hence also in new ways of participating in an across different multimodal sites of activities. When using ICT and digital media we are facing complexities that transcend being able to send an e-mail, send / receive SMS, attach documents and claiming to be able to chat. In order to empower the Danish citizens we should be focusing on and encouraging multimodal and multiple media literacies.

Maybe we should be asking ourselves whether this ICT-barometer is in fact doing what we need?

What kinds of knowledge does it create? 

How does it provide us with new knowledge?

In which ways does it create relevant knowledge? 

How does it provide us with usable knowledge? 

How does it enable us to move in a relevant direction?

For further inspiration on this theme, I can recommend visiting David Buckingham’s homepage (see: http://www.childrenyouthandmediacentre.co.uk/staff.asp?TableName=&RowID=9&PeopleID=1) as well as Ofcom’s Media Literacy Publications and Research, where you’ll find reports on media literacy and adults, children and young people, older people, disabled people – just to mention a few. And two highly interesting reports “Adult Media Literacy” and “Media Literacy of Children and Young People”, both are reviews of research literature (See: http://www.ofcom.org.uk/advice/media_literacy/medlitpub/medlitpubrss/?=87101).

Sources in Danish about the new action plan and ICT-barometer:

http://www.itst.dk/e-laering-og-it-faerdigheder/publikationer/danskernes-it-ferdigheder-en-malrettet-indsats/danskernes-it-ferdigheder-en-malrettet-indsats and http://get.dav.itst.rackhosting.com/Publikationer/Danskernes_it-faerdigheder/index.htm

Related article in Computerworld (published December 21st 2007, 9.33 AM) under the headline “Critique: Sander’s new competence plan is a disappointment” (My translation. Original source:  http://www.computerworld.dk/art/43374?a=rss&i=0. Danish title”Kritik: Sander skuffer med ny kompetenceplan”). The main critique of the article is the fact that the ministry has only decided to spend kr. 10 mill. in relation to the new action plan.

On-Line writings – Copyright

The online writings on this website may be cited or briefly quoted in line with the usual academic conventions. You may also copy or download them for your own personal use. However, the writings must not be published elsewhere (e.g. to mailing lists, bulletin boards etc.) without the author’s explicit permission.

Please note that if you copy my writings you must:

• include this copyright note

• you should observe the conventions of academic citation in a version of the following form:

e.g. Hansbøl, Mikala: “New IT-barometer and action plan aimed at strengthening basic IT-skills”, published at Mikala’s Klumme – A researcher’s blog: https://mikalasklumme.wordpress.com/2007/12/12/pisa-2006/. Version 3rd January 2008.

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Podcast om “Fremtidens e-læring” fra Center for It og Læring (CIL)

November 28, 2007

Via Aarhus Universitets pod- og vodcastarkiv kan man finde interessante podcasts fra Center for It og Lærings (CIL) aktiviteter. 

CIL har fx for nylig afholdt et seminar om “Fremtidens e-læring”, hvor bl.a. Simon Heilesen fra Roskilde Universitetscenter (se: http://akira.ruc.dk/~simonhei/) holdt et tankevækkende oplæg om National Strategi for e-læring, RUC’s og andre universiteters arbejde med at implementere e-læring samt e-læring som begreb. Oplæggets titel var “E-læring i organisationen”.

På CIL’s hjemmeside (se: www.cil.au.dk) kan du finde link til Aarhus Universitets podcastarkiv, og i øvrigt finde informationer om CIL’s interessante aktiviteter. Det er muligt at abonnere på podcasts fra Aarhus Universitet

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40 % it-illiterates in Denmark – the world’s most digitalized society?

November 18, 2007

How is it that the world’s most digitalized society has managed to become a society characterized by approx. 40 % ICT-illiterates as suggested by a survey of the citizens’ (16 years old or older) digital literacy in Denmark (published by Teknologisk Institut, January 2007)?

According to World Economic Forum, Denmark tops the rankings of The Global Information Technology Report 2006-2007’s “Networked Readiness Index” (March 2007 see press release: http://www.weforum.org/en/media/Latest%20Press%20Releases/gitr_2007_press_release). It is difficult, but yet pivotal, that Denmark takes a serious self reflective look in the mirror and analyses Denmark as an ICT-nation.

There may be several issues at stake. One is the Networked Readiness Index. What does it really say? A second issue is the measurement of Danish citizens’ digital literacy. What is digital literacy, and is it measureable? What does it mean to be an it-illiterate in Denmark? A third matter to consider is how ICT and digital media participates in Danish citizens’ everyday lives – at home, at work and in school? A fourth question is, what can we use a top position for? What does it tell us?

We actually know very little about how ICT and digital media participates in Danish people’s everyday conduct of living. Since using and learning to use technologies must be viewed as joint activities, it is central to attend to the ways in which ICT and digital media becomes used in and across the everyday practices of people’s lives.

We know a lot about quantities and distribution of computers and internet in Danish homes, education and the public as well as private industry. We also have a lot of knowledge – but not enough – from research worldwide on formal learning activities with ICT and digital media, mostly in relation to formal goal- and content-oriented purposes in various educational contexts.

However, as informal ways of using and learning with ICT and digital media in the course of people’s everyday conduct of living is really where most of our societal e-learning is taken place, it is central that we emphasize a more systematic focus on these aspects of being an ICT-nation.

We see more and more examples of non-constructive ways of using ICT and digital media in our society – it is not only a Danish, but also a worldwide tendency: Happy Slapping, identity theft and other e-crimes. The spread of new technologies is not in and of itself something good.

Appointed as the world’s most digital society, we should consider ourselves obliged to take upon us the societal responsibility of keeping a critical stance towards being in this position. It isn’t just a case of the more the merrier. Having more doesn’t always turn out to be a good thing.

A highly digitalized society as Denmark is continuously in a state of becoming. With the speed of development, distribution as well as usages of ICT and digital media, it is a difficult but also an imperative task that we develop ways to analyze Denmark as a society in the making. We must invent ways to investigate enactments of societal regularities, variations of practices, as well as competent subjects with ICT and digital media.

On-Line writings – Copyright

The online writings on this website may be cited or briefly quoted in line with the usual academic conventions. You may also copy or download them for your own personal use. However, the writings must not be published elsewhere (e.g. to mailing lists, bulletin boards etc.) without the author’s explicit permission.

Please note that if you copy my writings you must:

• include this copyright note

• you should observe the conventions of academic citation in a version of the following form:

e.g. Hansbøl, Mikala: “40 % it-illiterates in Denmark – the world’s most digitalized society?”, published at Mikala’s Klumme – A researcher’s blog https://mikalasklumme.wordpress.com/2007/11/18/40-it-illiterates-in-denmark-the-worlds-most-digitalized-society/ . Version 11th December 2007. 

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Kronik: It-strategi – vi kan lære af uformel læring

November 15, 2007

Efter valget den 13. november 2007, er omfordelingen af de politiske kort et godt udgangspunkt for at tage Danmarks it-strategi op til revision. Jeg savner en klar vision for, ikke blot hvordan vi fastholder Danmarks digitale førertrøje, men også for, hvad vi ønsker at bruge den til – en visionær og kritisk holdning til it i det danske samfund. Det er en central vinkel, synes jeg, men den har så vidt jeg kan se glimret ved sit fravær – og det er en skam.

Derfor har jeg skrevet en kronik, og håber derved at bidrage til debatten om Danmarks forhåbentlig nye og mere visionære it-strategi. Læs kronikken: It-strategi – vi kan lære af uformel læring

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New Zealand’s “Digital Strategy” (2005)

November 14, 2007

There exist a multiplicity of ways of engaging in national it-strategies, e-learning strategies and digital strategies. Just by looking at the names chosen for the various strategies, it becomes apparent that the approaches enacted by countries and governments are different. E.g. the current Danish “National Strategy of ICT-supported learning” is focusing on e-learning. Other strategies may be focusing on it-infrastructure.

Many countries work with several strategies launched somewhat independently by different ministries e.g. Ministry of Education, Ministry of Science etc. New Zealand’s Strategy provides an example of an overall national strategy that seems to capture both a bottom-up approach as well as being an attempt to create one coherent national strategy. The Digital Strategy is launched as a collaborative continuous effort and hence the strategy is a living document (see: http://www.digitalstrategy.govt.nz/)

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National Strategi for IKT-støttet læring (2007)

November 14, 2007

I 2001 lancerede Undervisningsministeriet under den daværende SR regering ”Danmarks strategi for uddannelse, læring og it” http://www.it-strategi.uvm.dk/frameset.php3).  

I perioden fra VKO regeringens tiltrædelse i 2001 og frem til 2007, har Danmark således stået i det man kan kalde for et strategisk tomrum i forhold til at have en national strategi med fokus på læring og it. Perioden har været præget af en slags spredt fægtning, hvor regeringen har lanceret mange forskellige enkeltstående projekter og initiativer indenfor forskellige områder (mange er nævnt i strategiteksten ”National strategi for ikt-støttet læring, se nedenfor).

I juni 2007 lancerede VTU i samarbejde med IT- og Telestyrelsen – under VKO regeringen – Danmarks nye e-læringsstrategi “National strategi for ikt-støttet læring” (se: http://itst.dk/static/National_strategi_for_IKT-stoettet_laering/index.htm). 

Strategien tager afsæt i følgende definition af e-læring:

”E-læring er en standardbetegnelse for kompetenceudvikling, hvor indholdet, eller dele heraf, formidles via informations- og kommunikationsteknologi (IKT). Kommunikation og samarbejde mellem deltagerne indbyrdes og mellem deltagerne og underviseren kan også foregå helt eller delvist via IKT.

E-læring kan anvendes enten til selvstudier eller som en integreret del af eksempelvis tilstedeværelsesundervisning og sidemandsoplæring.

E-læring har et klart læringsformål, og forløbene kan være af et minut eller af flere års varighed.” (kap. 1).

Læs mine kommentarer til strategien: Kommentarer til National strategi for ikt-støttet læring

On-Line writings – Copyright

The online writings on this website may be cited or briefly quoted in line with the usual academic conventions. You may also copy or download them for your own personal use. However, the writings must not be published elsewhere (e.g. to mailing lists, bulletin boards etc.) without the author’s explicit permission.

Please note that if you copy my writings you must:

• include this copyright note

• you should observe the conventions of academic citation in a version of the following form:

e.g. Hansbøl, Mikala: “National strategi for IKT-støttet læring (2007)”, published at Mikala’s Klumme – A researcher’s blog: https://mikalasklumme.wordpress.com/2007/11/14/national-strategi-for-ikt-st%c3%b8ttet-l%c3%a6ring-2007/. Version 11th December 2007.