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Emerging themes: Institutional context-HE in FE

Page history last edited by Anna Gruszczynska 8 years, 11 months ago

Below you will find excerpts from conversations during project meetings and responses to reflexive tasks which touch upon the impact of institutional context (HE in FE sector) on OERs.

 

Excerpt from Phil's response to reflexive task 1 ("Introducing OERs")

I am not sure that the administrators in my institution will see the benefits in OER as the lack of a transparent financial reward may be an obstacle in encouraging them to provide the time for colleagues to contribute. However, I will argue that the current drive to use OER means that if my institution seeks an inclusive image then relevant support should be given to participating colleagues. 


I will encourage my students to get involved via stating that extra resources could help with their grades and I would give examples of where OER has benefited the learning experience in terms of increasing communication skills and confidence levels. I hope that the students’ involvement will mean that their confidence levels improve as this can be a common problem for HE in FE students and hope that this self-empowerment will develop their levels of critical thinking and creativity.

 

Excerpt from discussions during the technical development workshop on 6 May 2011

Phil also talked about some of the challenges he is likely to encounter in the process of developing his OER resource and ways in which those challenges are related to institutional culture that suffers from a lack of creativity, cautiousness, defensiveness and is not that keen on engaging with outsiders (might be an issue when it comes to dealing with openness). We talked about issues related to digital literacies – Phil mentioned that his students are not very digitally advanced and he wondered what relationship this had to his students’ class/socioeconomic status. At the same time, Richard mentioned that the situation at SHU is similar and for instance general level of Blackboard use is very low-level; there are also issues around accessibility/readability when it comes to the postgraduate students he works with. Similarly, John mentioned issues that he discovered in the context of the foundation degree, in particular social access to IT. The people on the foundation degree might have had access to a computer at home or work but at home the computer might be taken over by the kids and at work they might have insufficient access to the Internet etc. Richard suggested that Phil might want to describe the benefits of the edupunk course in terms of people’s ability to develop their digital literacy skills

 

Phil wonders whether there is a gap between Blackburn students and other students – how relevant is it that the percentage of students with A-levels at Blackburn is only thirty odd per cent if we know very little what A-levels give to students? Phil mentioned that there is no “romance” when it comes to Blackburn, it is a very vocational institution, used to do City and Guilds; now does degrees. There are issues with retention at Blackburn, particularly with criminology. At the same time, John suggested that you could view the HE in FE experience as “traditional university experience” – with small groups, the tutors knowing the students’ names etc. On the edupunk course, Phil plans to devote one of the first three hour sessions to exploring "the nature of university"; maybe there would also be space to address "what is FE experience?"

 

Presentation prepared for "OER across the sectors" webinar, focusing on challenges specific to the HE in FE sector

 

 

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