I felt I knew everybody, by Chrissi Nerantzi (APT Conference, University of Greenwich, 8 July 2014)


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Learner experiences in an open cross-institutional CPD course for teachers in HE

APT Conference: Connected Learning in an Open World, University of Greenwich, 8 July 2014

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I felt I knew everybody, by Chrissi Nerantzi (APT Conference, University of Greenwich, 8 July 2014)

  1. 1. “I felt I knew everybody” Learner experiences in an open cross-institutional CPD course for teachers in HE Chrissi Nerantzi Academic Developer Manchester Metropolitan University, UK @chrissinerantzi APT Conference: Connected Learning in an Open World, University of Greenwich, 8 July 2014 Nerantzi,Uhlin&Kvarnström(2013)
  2. 2. Summary This session will provide insights into the experience of learners who participated in PBL groups during the second iteration (FDOL132) of the open course Flexible, Distance, Online Learning (FDOL). FDOL132 is a case study, part of a PhD project in open cross-institutional academic practice for professional development of teachers in Higher Education (HE). Ethical approval: Edinburgh Napier University
  3. 3. Voices • ecological university (Barnett, 2011) • personalisation, collaboration, informalisation (Redecker et al, 2011) • blending of formal & informal learning (Conole, 2013) • call to open-up, join-up (European Commission, 2013) • the danger of monocultures (Weller, 2014) • lifewide curriculum (Jackson, 2014) • recognising the positive impact of human interaction for learning
  4. 4. (about) collaborative learning in Openland http://www.dipity.com/chrissinerantzi/collaborative-learning-in-openland/
  5. 5. http://globaldimensionsinhe.wordpress.com/ http://fdol.wordpress.com/ 2+ cases Phenomenography (Marton, 1981) Main data collection individual interviews Complementary data via survey instruments (initial and final) Collective case study approach (Stake, 1995) Case study 1: FDOL132 PhD research: to develop a flexible collaborative learning framework for open cross-institutional Academic Development courses
  6. 6. • Open cross-disciplinary professional development course for teachers in HE • Developed and organised by Academic Developers in the UK and Sweden • Developed using freely available social media • Offered from September – December 2013 • Pedagogical design: simplified Problem-Based Learning Numbers • Registered: 107 • FDOL132 community in G+ until now: 72 • Signed up for PBL groups: 31 • PBL groups: initially 8-9 in each x 4 > then 3 (group 2: 6, / group 3: 5 / group 4: 6) • PBL facilitators: 4 • Participants in webinars: 10-25 • Participants who completed in groups : 31 (42% of participants learning in groups) •Countries • UK - 66 • Sweden – 17 • Canada – 4 • Ireland – 2 • also participants from: Hongkong, Argentina, Greenland, Switzerland, New Zeeland, Slovenia, Belgium, New Zealand, Norway FDOL132 info
  7. 7. Organisation of FDOL132: multi-mode participation Nerantzi, Uhlin & Kvarnström (2013)
  8. 8. Step 1: Focus What do we see? How do we understand what we see? What do we need to find out more about? Specify learning issues/intended learning outcomes Step 2: Investigate How and where are we/am I going to find answers? Who will do what and by when? What main findings and solutions do we/I propose? Step 3: Share How are we going to present our findings within the group? What do we want to share with the FDOL community? How can we provide feedback to another group? What reflections do I have about my learning and our group work? FISh a simplified PBL model Nerantzi & Uhlin (2012)
  9. 9. Findings: initial survey 17 completed Countries: UK 37%, Sweden 37%, other 26% Age range: 35-54 82% Gender: 35% male, 65% female Qualifications: 53% Doctoral qualification, 35% Postgraduate qualification, 12% undergraduate qualification •All employed ( 88% HE and 12%Public Sector) •Participated in online courses before 88 % •Participated in an open online course before 47% Learning values to be an open learner To connect with others To collaborate To be supported by a facilitator Application to practice Prior experience Working in groups 77% Problem-Based Learning 30% Online collaboration 38% Social media in a professional capacity 50%
  10. 10. Findings: final survey Final survey: 11 completed Mode of participation Group member 91% Autonomous learner 9% Study hours per week 55% 3 h, 27% 5h, 18% over 5 Main reason for not participating in a specific aspect of the course: TIME Learning values •Structured course •Variety of synchronous & asynchronous engagement opportunities •Flexibility •Resources •Communication •Feedback from facilitators, peer and others •Recognition for study •Group work > participation was often a struggle Personal Learning goals achieved 100% Learning goals •Technologies for learning •Problem-based Learning •Learning in groups •Open learning •Open course design Facilitation (satisfaction) Support 100% Participation in online discussions 100% Provision of regular feedback 64%
  11. 11. Key observations importance for learning initial survey final survey group work 100% 74% feedback 61% 97% recognition for study 47% 94% independent study 100% 100% facilitator support 100% 100%
  12. 12. 45 h transcribing 292:57 mins audio 37,274 words 7 interviews Case 1: FDOL132
  13. 13. “Why should cooperative or collaborative learning be effective for learners, who are, after all, exchanging only imperfect understandings of the content, if the teacher is not present to advise or correct them?” (Slavin, 2004, 287)
  14. 14. cooperative vs collaborative cooperative learning collaborative learning shared product/outcome shared product/outcome focus on individual goals within group goals focus on group goals the individual constructs learning learning is co-constructed, challenged, modified, agreed, shared understanding product consists of individual contributions product is co-constructed roles/responsibilities pre-defined/imposed (not always) roles/responsibilities negotiated/agreed process is clean and defined (not always) process is fluid, responsive and adaptive focus more on individual achievement focus more on collective achievement
  15. 15. Group related data Preliminary thematic analysis PBL groups Knowing each other “It's about being able to read the other person's body language, and, and things like that. I don't know. That's what I assume it is. I just feel that it, it was that that gave it the personal feel [...]. I felt like I knew everybody because I knew what they looked like and, you know. And I think that made a difference. Then they weren't just, […]. you know, an icon on a computer screen, that I'd recognised them as a human being if that makes sense.” participant F2
  16. 16. http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2453/3599597595_4542f11554_o.jpg Group related data Preliminary thematic analysis Motivation Feeling useful “It was good to, I think that I felt good of contributing with my experience to what they're doing. So when, they ask something, and I saw that it can work in a certain way because we have done it here in UK I could tell them what we have done and then they can experiment. So from that point of view it felt good, of sharing[...]” Participant F7
  17. 17. http://fc08.deviantart.net/fs71/f/2012/099/b/f/crazy_chick_by_billiejett-d4viqcr.jpg Group related data Preliminary thematic analysis Tensions Lack of choice “I think there's quite a contradiction in PBL actually, in terms of that kind of liberal social constructivist ethos. But at the same time, it, it can be quite rigid, and, I'm not convinced that using one particular, educational approach is necessarily always the best thing. Particularly if you're trying to bring people together in a. OK, structuring, is, is important , and, putting people in groups but like the, to kind of feed them through, a certain educational approach, I'm not, I'm not all-, I'm not always convinced by that. “Participant 1
  18. 18. Source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f2/Piano-keyboard.jpg Group related data Preliminary thematic analysis Value Doing stuff “If you're gonna prepare people for complexity then prepare them for complexity and put them in complex situations. Don't, don't kind of prescribe everything and then say ‘well we, prepared you for the real world now’ -oops! So if, we can have some degree of controlled anarchy and some controlled chaos which is done in a reasonably, safe environment, I think that much better prepares learners in the twenty first century than, prescribed curricula.” Participant F1
  19. 19. Open CPD to collaborate and join-up initiatives 1. Could open courses, such as FDOL be adapted more widely and become part of wider CPD offers for academics and other professionals who teach in HE? 2. Are there now opportunities for the co- creation of curricula among institutions & industry to create innovative, contextualised and sustainable solutions that can be scaled up?
  20. 20. Hard fun? “I enjoyed the process of collaborative working, work that was struggle, it was fun, it was interesting to communicate with others, especially due to the […] multi-national structure. So I can encounter the […] different, other […] backgrounds. […] it's, interesting for me, in contrast to me communicating with our other, colleagues […] So this was inspiring […] .” Participant F4
  21. 21. FDOL131 > FDOL132> FDOL141 Course FDOL131 FDOL132 FDOL141 Course duration 11Feb – 7 May 13 12 weeks 12 Sep – 5 Dec 13 12 weeks 10 Feb - 23 March 14 6 weeks Thematic units 6 7 6 Learners 80 107 86 Learners from the UK 42 65 38 Learners from Sweden 21 20 27 Learners from other countries 17 22 21 Groups 8>4 4>3 6>4 Learners in groups/% 64/80% 31/29% 27/32% Facilitators 4>3 4 14>11 (in pairs/threes) Learners per facilitator 27 36 7 or 14 (in pairs) Learners that completed in groups 16 13 17 Completionrate based on the whole cohort insufficient information insufficient information insufficient information Completionrate based on group participation 25% 43% 63% (Nerantzi, 2014, 55)
  22. 22. • Continue data analysis of case FDOL132 using NVivo, define categories of description • Continue literature review (cooperative, collaborative learning, open learning) • Finish paper about FDOL132 conceptions of learning in PBL groups • … Next steps
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  24. 24. cross-institutional #BYOD4L 14 – 18 July Is your institution joining us? Manchester Metropolitan University Sheffield Hallam University University of Sussex University of Ulster London Metropolitan University
  25. 25. “I felt I knew everybody” Learner experiences in an open cross-institutional CPD course for teachers in HE Chrissi Nerantzi Academic Developer Manchester Metropolitan University, UK @chrissinerantzi APT Conference: Connected Learning in an Open World, University of Greenwich, 8 July 2014 Nerantzi,Uhlin&Kvarnström(2013)