Strategic development of learning technology at northampton 31 10-13


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Strategic development of learning technology at Northampton - presentation for Education 3.0 in Moscow 30th October, 2013

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  • Welcome and introductions
  • For those who would like to know more about the University of Northampton – you can see a range of demographics about our institution.Of particular interest is the proposed campus relocation which is planned for 2018 which will not just be a physical move but will also be the opportunity to look at how our current provision is being delivered and how we can be more aligned to the future needs of our current stakeholders.In the past 5 years we have spent around 2.6 billion roubles on student and staff facilities and have a planned 17 billion roubles campus relocation planned for 2018.
  • I introduced Blackboard to the University in 2002 as part of a VLE evaluation process. Blackboard was found to be the easiest system to use ‘out of the box’ and achieved the greatest support from academics. Over the past 11 years we have extended Blackboard through additions such as the Community System Licence; a move to managed hosting; Blackboard Mobile Central and Learn; and the Blackboard Content System. We are currently looking to integrate the Connect toolkit for texting. We have continued to extend Blackboard through 3rd party suppliers such as Xerte to enhance content; Panopto for lecture recording; Publisher extensions such as Vital Source / Pearson; Google Analytics for usage patterns; Kaltura for video streaming; and Turnitin for originality checking and online marking.Form a systems perspective, Blackboard is now linked to the University Identity Management System and driven by data provided by the Curriculum system – Agresso Distinction QLS. We are gradually moving from the Snapshot integration to the SIS frameworkIn 2012 – a VLE review was conducted ( . The majority of academic staff within the review noted no pedagogical advantage in moving from Blackboard to Moodle and felt that any such a change would present a significant risk to the current status of the University’s core business and its likely future development.
  • I thought it may be useful to contextualise this presentation around the Blackboard Online Programme Management frameworkFull details at: provides five key headers which are important considerations for Learning Technology.These include Planning and Development; Curriculum and Courses; Enabling Technologies; Marketing and Recruitment and Student Support.
  • The development of Learning Technologies must be completed within the enterprise infrastructure within institution and ideally not without full consideration of all the stakeholders who need to be involved.In 2010 – Northampton pulled together a team to consider developing a mobile infrastructure and the range of the team represents the different needs of the final project output.In order to conduct planning and development we needed to understand the stakeholder requirements.There were different needs within the institution for a mobile app. Marketing wanted an app to promote the institution whilst the Learning Technology team wanted an app which enhance pedagogical engagement.Many stakeholders needed to provide data and feeds for the app to provide the full range which was required. This slide identifies the five key teams involved in iNorthampton development which was responding to a student and staff survey provided earlier in the year.The growth of iNorthampton is now embedded in the institution…For example, based on 295 responses from new students during induction October 2012.82% own a smartphone (4% are planning to get one this year).35% had used the app within the first 3 weeks of starting. (31% of these students indicated that it influenced their choice of University !) – possible link to marketing for greater promotion?Timetables, Maps and access to the VLE were the most popular elements at this stage.Moving forward, all projects are identifying stakeholders and systems in the same way as iNorthampton which I will mention later
  • As you can see from the various statistics Learning Technology represent a significant amount of usage throughout the University. All of these amounts represent significant increases from the previous year.Northampton are now using the CAIeRO approach towards curriculum design / redesign. The CAIeRO process is bringing together course teams, Learning Technoloigists, Librarians, students and other stakeholders to consider the development of courses and modules. These events allow us to reconsider the curriculum and integrate technology within a managed process. This also allows us the opportunity to identify areas where the course team need further development (e.g. with specific areas of technology).Marking online has now been introduced as a whole University activity using a combination of Blackboard and Turnitin. Both of these have particular tools such as rubrics which are now routinely being used to enhance the student experience.Moving forward, the University is making progress with investing in alternative forms of delivery which will impact on delivery as we move towards our new campus development. Mobile developments are a particular growth area for Northampton at present and we have a number of case studies which show how this may be used within particular areas such as Art and Design ( play from 0-3:55 ) (10 minute video) -
  • The VLE (Blackboard – called NILE at Northampton) has moved to central importance for all courses. The VLE review in 2012 has raised the recognition of Blackboard at senior levels and has assisted with the top down push for all areas to adopt the technologies available.Over the past 11 years, the technology infrastructure has been enhanced through a range of acquisitions:2002 –Bb Learning System.2004 – Bb Community System2005 - Turnitin2007 – Bb Managed Hosting 2011 – Bb Mobile, Panopto, PebblePad and WizIQ2012 – Bb Content System, Xerte, Kaltura,EdublogsEach of the additions has been fully integrated and allows us to ensure that we have a supportive infrastructure for international delivery. For example the need for Kaltura video library was identified following the problems of delivering video via YouTube into some Eastern Countries such as China.
  • The value of Learning Technology to marketing and recruitment has been enhanced through the development of Welcome Sites for applicants to allow them to sample course material and find out more about what they need to do to prepare for their studies. These also have the benefit of allowing students to test their usernames and passwords before they get on site to ensure that they are able to progress on the course with as few problems as possible.The iNorthampton app is also advertised heavily to prospective students as it provides them with campus maps during open days; contact details for tutors; University news and videos / pictures of the sites.
  • The key for student support is to provide help and assistance for the student when ever they need it – they may be financial constraints why this is not always possible (e.g. 24 hours a day support).Virtual help, phone, email and face to face sessions form the core resources which are available for students.We are investigating new ways in which we are able to allow tutors to attract and retain students. The new Retention centre which builds on the Early Warning System and Performance Dashboards will allow tutors to identify students who may be needing further support and proactively be able to provide this. Enhancements such as this really assist with tutor efficiency and allow staff to focus on the actual learning and teaching which engage students.
  • Over the course of this presentation, I hope to have given you a flavour of the type of work which is taking place at The University of Northampton. I would like to summarise by just listing the five key tips which I have followed over the past few years.Firstly – find out what the needs are through discussions, surveys and reports. Decide which of these are important to you and which ones you are able to meet. The data directly from Blackboard through the analytics and from other tools and system have helped Northampton to better identify student engagement and we are working to research if this also increases retention. If you know what your students are doing then you are in a better position to help them at every stage.Secondly bring together a range of people with the skills needed to achieve the project.Piloting will help you identify if you have actually met the intended aims of the project and you can refine these before release.Each rollout should consider the support which is needed and also keep a focus on innovations.Finally, networks will provide essential information on new innovations and lessons learnt. All of which will make a positive difference to the student experience.We measure the success rate of using Blackboard on the feedback from staff and students and the way in which Blackboard contributes towards the University strategic vision. Not all of this is easily quantifiable but a good Learning Technology team will be able to collate the cross-institutional findings to ensure that we are using the best tool for the role.
  • Are there any questions?
  • Strategic development of learning technology at northampton 31 10-13

    1. 1. The Strategic Development of Enterprise Learning Technology at The University of Northampton. Rob Howe The University of Northampton Presentation at Bb Forum Moscow 2013 “Best elearning practices to enhance the international competitiveness” 30th October, 2013
    2. 2. Demographics • 14,087 students; • 75% full-time; • 83% undergraduate • Top 50 UK University (Guardian League Table 2013); • 88% Student Satisfaction (National Student Survey); • 96% Employability (Destination of Leavers Survey); • £50million ( 2.6billion) spent on student and staff facilities in the past five years • Designated as an Ashoka U Changemaker Campus (one of only 22 in the world); • Shortlisted for UK Times Higher Education ‘University of the Year 2013’; • Proposed £330million (17billion) campus relocation planned for 2018.
    3. 3. Why Blackboard? • Introduced in 2002 as best „out of the box‟ system • Extended through Blackboard extensions • Easily linked to 3rd party tools • Integrated into University systems • 2012 VLE confirmed a 3 year commitment to remain
    4. 4. The Northampton experience contextualised by the Bb OPM
    5. 5. Planning and Development CIS (Timetabling) Course info Mobile web page Web team Jpg files Marketing Flickr Youtube Library Systems Staff directory Talis integration Events listings LearnTech News feeds Blackboard Learn
    6. 6. Curriculum and courses Blackboard / LearnTech Stats (2013): • 16,189 users on 16,556 courses. • 278,080 documents taking up 713Gb. • 1.7m visits per year (8 minutes average) • 491 staff trained over 138 sessions. • 613 1:1 meetings with staff. • 1770 students over 86 sessions. • 2928 cases solved via email. • 41 CAIeRO events run over the year. • Investigating flexible delivery (e.g. Flipped lectures and MOOCs) Case study on mobile learning
    7. 7. Enabling technologies (Blackboard)
    8. 8. Marketing and recruitment
    9. 9. Student Support
    10. 10. Top five tips for developing a supportive infrastructure 1. Identify needs (and decide which ones you can meet) 2. Bring together a project team with range of experience 3. Pilot with representative stakeholders 4. Support the rollouts and continuous developments 5. Stay in the loop
    11. 11. Questions? Contact details: Rob Howe +44 1604 892483 Linkedin - Twitter - @rjhowe
    12. 12. References etc. Useful links • More about the iNorthampton project: Image credits • Photography by Rob Farmer, University of Northampton