Whilst the project team was composed of staff thought to be relevant to a review of the toolkit – it enhanced communications with the Head of Quality and Curriculum Services who had not previously been involved with some of the detailed academic course development processes.
Since 2007, UN has been working on improving processes for course design and delivery using a method based on the Carpe Diem model (Originally developed by The University of Leicester (Armelliniet al, 2008 and 2009)). Over time this process has been changed and refined and is now termed CAIeRO (Creating Aligned and Interactive educational Resource Opportunities).The CAIeRO process is an opportunity for the course team, Learning Technologists, Librarians, Students and other stakeholders (e.g. academic developer/facilitator(s) who are not part of the course team) to come together over a focused period of time to reflect on current or future courses and rebuild these in a way which is pedagogically focused and makes use of technology where relevant – and where it would enhance the delivery.‘.......the use of the technology itself is increasingly not a distinguishing factor for organisations, but rather the quality of that use and the way it advances the goals of a change resilient organisation become essential to success.’(Marshall, 2010)The CAIeRO process so far has mostly been used within courses based in the School of Health but the 2011 Learning Technology Operational Plan, underpinning the University’s e-strategy has committed to the rollout of this process to the other five schools within the University. Timescales for events within The Northampton Business School and The School of Social Sciences are planned for early 2011 along with further events within The School of Health.The style of the events held under the CAIeRO banner have subtly changed over time to incorporate new practices and developments. For example, recent JISC/HEA funding during 2010 has allowed the University to explore the development of Open Educational Resources under the TIGER project (www.northampton.ac.uk/tiger). This has introduced the elements of Designing for Openness to the CAIeRO events so that culture of both using and sharing material is ingrained at the earliest opportunity.We are also discussing the nature of course development and design with the Director of Learning and Teaching and Head of Quality and Curriculum Services to look at the nature of the validation process and the way in which programmes are delivered within the University.
The team (see 3) involved in the CAIeRO QEQA project UN have wide experience of researching, supporting and developing quality processes and e-learning. In 2000, the University was part of the TALENT consortium looking at ways in which Universities could make more efficient use of technology in teaching and learning. In 2006 we completed the HEA benchmarking processes and then subsequently were awarded funding to develop a resource for staff based on the need for Bite sized materials (www.northampton.ac.uk/bite). In parallel with this, the University was also awarded funding from JISC to investigate the Learner’s Experience of e-Learning under the E4L banner (www.northampton.ac.uk/e4l). Most recently ,under the JISC/HEA OER programme, we have the TIGER project (www.northampton.ac.uk/tiger) which is looking at OERs for Interprofessional learning.This research gives a sound platform for the CAIeRO QEQA project. The outcomes are being fed back into the CAIeRO processes to ensure maximum value for event participants. The outcomes of the BITE project provided the teams with pedagogically based case studies of technology use; whilst the E4L outcomes ensured that developments are made with full understanding of the students’ need. More recently TIGER is providing a contemporary view of open content and the value of resource sharing. However our need to continue to improve and refine the CAIeRO events and make best use of contemporary information means we are in an ideal position to look at how the QAQE E-Learning toolkit (http://qaqe-sig.net/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/Toolkit-071010.pdf) may support / enhance existing institutional processes
Comments on programme development:It was suggested that external intelligence and contextualisation of awards is usually vague and this should be more focused and better utilized within the process.A point was raised in that programmes reach the validation stage before they are reviewed for recommendations and this is poor practice from a resource perspective.It was asserted that the market case is never queried in a validation, and this is an area that should be addressed as business plans are now required as part of the approval processes.It was suggested that a key consideration at the planning stage should be the resource implication for other teams, and that while the AD1 form used in course design has a question on this aspect, the section is rarely completed.It was suggested that there is currently inequity in terms of the process as it is down to the individual submitting the proposal to ensure the business plan is considered and that appropriate costings are included.Specific comments on the toolkit:Thetoolkit could be considered as a tool in terms of its impact when it is applied in a UN context, and b) in terms of its value to the UN’s quality assurance processesIt was suggested that QA process 1.5 could be post validation and pre deliveryIt was additionally suggested that some of the processes could be centrally assuredA point was raised in that 2.7 ‘Monitoring of technical and management systems, including student data’ is not a question for the Course Leader, but that if the question is to be posed, the answer should also reside within the toolkit.Could the tool could be broken down into audience specific questions, for example practitioners, institutional concerns and Programme Leaders. It was agreed that if the toolkit is to be used in line with the programmes in Social Work and Education, this is an important question to ask
Rob Howe's presentation at the QAQE quality conf 14th june2011
CAIeRO QAQE Project: e-ployment of the QAQE E-Learning Toolkit to enhance the quality of programme development Rob Howe University of Northampton 14th June, 2011
Project Team• Director of Learning and Teaching• Head of Quality and Curriculum Services• Deputy Director of Academic Services (Information Services)• Principal Lecturer Learning and Teaching (Health)• Head of Learning Technology
Background to UON activity• Focus on design and delivery of modules• Recognition that:‘.......the use of the technology itself is increasingly not a distinguishing factor for organisations, but rather the quality of that use and the way it advances the goals of a change resilient organisation become essential to success.’ (Marshall, 2010)• CAIeRO (Creating Aligned and Interactive educational Resource Opportunities) -based on Carpe Diem model
Key reflections on use of the toolkit• A useful tool for prompting discussions within the team.• Brought an enhanced quality dimension to CAIeRO discussions – refined paperwork• Encouraged the team to look at the importance of quality early in the CAIeRO process. (pre CAIeROs ?)• Whilst the toolkit focused on TEL – the discussions around it were much more about general pedagogy.• Would have benefited from better numbering / colour coding to allow for easier referencing.• Target parts of the toolkit for different groups (some parts are mandatory for the institution)