6th Annual Learning and Teaching Conference: Communities of Practice to promote creative online learning

As you can see from the photograph, participants in this session were very lively and, in the open spirit of Web 2.0, they readily agreed to have their comments included here... 

Anyway, the presentation was part of the strand "Learning Environments and Learning Communities from the future" and was entitled: "Fostering communities of practice to enable creative, technology-enhanced learning in a UK research-led Higher Education institution." After the main presentation, participants formed small groups and addressed four questions about engagement and sustainability for online learning and teaching within the University. Here are the four questions, the feedback and a link to the more detailed feedback in a podcast. 

1. What are the main issues around motivation for staff in HE to enhance their digital literacy skills? 
  • Students pushing for change is one driver
  • Time is a constant issue
  • Fear of change
2. What are the barriers to increased use of technologies for learning at the University? How can they be overcome?
  • Time
  • Software itself
  • Win hearts and minds
  • Clear guidance and support
  • Relevance - should be embedded and in context
3. What can we do across the University to promote, develop and embed innovation, technology and pedagogy?
  • Need champions in Colleges
  • Embed e-Learning
  • Courses like the Web 2.0 course delivered more widely
  • Prioritise these developments from the top
  • Collaboration across Colleges - showcases, a community as online resource
4. How can interest in and use of technologies for learning be sustained over the longer term?
  • Share best practice
  • Clear purpose and use of technology in context
  • Infrastructure
  • Named and known help, not remote 'helpdesk support'
  • Incentives
Download or listen to the podcast of the feedback.  The shuffling noise you hear occasionally is the sound of the digirecorder (or conch shell) being passed between the groups. 

A great big hug and a thank you for all participants here!


  1. Thank you, Bill! I found your presentation both engaging and inspiring. As a former course participant, I am thrilled to see the enthusiastic reception given to the course and all its potential, and I look forward to seeing Web 2.0 take off on a larger scale within the university. It has re-inspired me to look at how I can take forward what I learnt with my immediate colleagues.

  2. Where is the podcast of the presentation!?!:)

  3. There's a link in the post where it says "Download or listen to the podcast of the feedback"Click on the words 'podcast of the feedback'

  4. I really enjoyed your presentation, Bill. It was very interesting and it inspired me to learn and communicate! As you so rightly pointed out, it has more to do with communication than technology ... that really appeals to me.

  5. Thanks tina blog - much appreciated! :-)


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