Thursday, November 13, 2008

SURF Onderwijsdagen - 3

Another interesting presentation on day 1 was by Pieter van der Hijden. Although not very new, it was nice to see an organised overview of all steps that need to be taken during the implementation of a VLE. A crucial turning point is when the bottom up initiaves (enthousiastic instructors who started using e.g. with Moodle in their daily work environment) need to be transferred into a top down organsation. This means that organisation processes, support, workflow need to be (re)organised in order to use the VLE on the level of an entire organisation.
Van der Hijden indicated some advantages and disadvantages of the top down approach:
  • Management commitment
  • Finance
  • Common infrastructure
  • Professional support organisation
  • Slow implementation process
  • Needs to compete with other policy issues
  • Potential lack of support by workforce

According to van der Hijden organisations tend to emphasize maintentance and organisation issues, instead of education. This is an important threat for acceptance. In order to deal with this he presented the so called TACTEC approach, consisting of the following steps:
  1. Identify your main stakeholders (max. 7)
  2. Allocate roles
  3. Current situation
  4. Required situation
  5. Scenario's
  6. Cross check (are there any interdependencies?)

According to me we see an analogy with an enterprise architecture approach: you need to clarify what the business processes are in relation with your main actors. Then there is the analysis of IST (current) and SOLL (required).

Day 1 started with an opening keynote entitled 11-11-2020. This title made me curious, also because it did not show who the presenter would be. Well it was not a traditional presentation in the sense that Marc Dupuis from the University of Leiden did four interviews with two people, who gave their vision on how education will look like in 2020. In summary they described the following scenario's:
  • the airport
  • the warehouse
  • the fair trade
  • the supermarket

The scenario's were categorized on two axes: (1) from supply driven VLE to demand driven VLE and (2) from supply driven curriculum to demand driven curriculum.
We saw some science-fiction like impressions, interactive holograms, implanted chips and that kind of stuff, but I also noticed a slightly negative expectation. For example, the student who tried to select course packages in the warehouse whas confronted with several messages that his selection did not meet the 'standards', so the final result was that he did not find what he wanted. After the presentations the participants were asked to vote (rise your yellow card) for the scenario they liked most. Most votes were counted for the warehouse and the supermarket metaphore. To me the differences between the two were not very clear. Basing myself only on the presentations I voted for the "supermarket" which appeared to be in the quadrant of supply driven VLE x student centred curriculum. This is rather strange, since I don't believe in a supply driven VLE in the perspective of 2020. According to the quadrants I should have voted for 'the fair trade scenario', but somehow the presenters did not succeed to present this as an attractive metaphore, or maybe it was just too far away from a realistic scenario.

Last but not least I did a presentation together with Oscar Vonder from Learning Valley in which we argued that a service oriented approach (integrating applications through services) is the way to create a comprehensive, but also sustainable environment for the end user. The full presentation can be found on slideshare. Any comments or questions are welcome.

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