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Staying the distance: Using digital readiness tools to support
effective transitions into higher education for flexible le...
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Staying the distance: Using digital readiness tools to support effective transitions into higher education for flexible learners

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The Student Success Toolbox project is a nationally funded research and technology development project focusing on facilitating effective flexible learner transition into higher education. The project targets programme teams/institutions with adults engaged in undergraduate, part-time or online/distance-learning during the initial stages of the study lifecycle. The project has developed a toolbox of eight digital readiness/preparation tools, leveraging digital technologies to establish approaches to assist advisors in helping applicants to assess their own readiness for flexible learning and in providing learners with relevant, timely feedback to enhance their chances of success. These are Open Educational Resources (OERs) with a Creative Commons Licence (CC-BY), made openly available to, and actively shared with, programme teams/institutions. Alongside the tools is a guide on using the tools as part of a strategic flexible learner socialisation program and, where appropriate, directions on technically augmenting the tools for a specific programme or institution.

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Staying the distance: Using digital readiness tools to support effective transitions into higher education for flexible learners

  1. 1. Staying the distance: Using digital readiness tools to support effective transitions into higher education for flexible learners Dr James Brunton1, Prof. Mark Brown1, Dr. Eamon Costello1, Ann Cleary2, Lorraine Delaney1, Seamus Fox1, Jennifer Gilligan3, Lisa O’Regan4, Jamie Ward2 1. National Institute for Digital Learning, Dublin City University, Ireland 2. Dundalk Institute of Technology, Ireland 3. Institute of Technology Sligo, Ireland 4. Maynooth University, Ireland Am I Ready For Study Prospective flexible learners are presented with the opportunity to reflect and self-assess , through a readiness quiz, if they are ready to commit to online study. How Much Time Do I Have? A self-reflective ‘Calculator’ where prospective students are supported in thinking about the amount of time they spend on different activities during a typical week and how much spare time they might have to allocate to study. Who Can I Ask? Offers prospective flexible learners the opportunity to think about their support network and how they might garner support to help them successfully complete their studies. My Computer Skills Through the guidance of a student narrator, prospective flexible learners are informed of the technology, and necessary computer skills, needed in higher education. My First Assignment Prospective flexible learners navigate through a narrative relating to what it is like to plan out and develop a first assignment in higher education. Head Start Online: First Steps to Flexible Study This five week online course provides prospective flexible learners with key messages about how to prepare for studying at higher education level as a flexible learner. Study Tips For Me This tool is designed to provide support for flexible learners from other flexible learners, using a Tumblr based platform. Online Orientation This tool is created as a guide for those who wish to create an online orientation. This guide describes the elements that should be present in an effective online orientation, and allows users of the tool to build up a plan for how they would create an online orientation. For further information please email james.brunton@dcu.ie Website & Twitter: studentsuccess.ie - @FLSuccess Runtime: January 2015 – May 2016 Supported / Co-funded by: National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning / Fund for Building Digital Capacity Partners: National Institute for Digital Learning, Dublin City University (Lead partner), Dundalk Institute of Technology, Maynooth University, Sligo Institute of Technology

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