Amber Miro Award winner 2015: Lessons from a Learners’ Toolkit

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Hamish Loveday is talking about the learner toolkit he’s developed. I am really enjoying this talk. XXX is speaking my language. People first, technology later.

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Let’s start with people. What do they want to achieve and what can we do to achieve it. Technology is there to serve us and what we do. It shouldn’t drive what we do! So Hamish overcame an issue with the VLE, its inflexibility, by building a platform of their own. Learning gained from the process was more valuable than the building of the tool itself.

It’s important to give people space to innovate. All too often workload gets in the way of ideas. We have them but don’t have time to implement them. YES. So true. So often I think of things I would like to do. They get to the bottom of the list and remain there. Institutions need to understand that progress can only be made when we are given the space to make it. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

Never assume anything. Don’t be afraid to test your idea. Make a minimised version and test it out. This is very true but you need the space to create and the skills. ICT departments are often reticent to install something that is not supported by a company. Their fears are legitimate no doubt but it does make innovation very difficult.
The learner’s toolkit collects all the learning materials and training resources in one place. I like the use of profiles to help users navigate to content. The fact that something so simple was achieved by 2.5 people in a couple of months is staggering. It all seems to be down to the fact that the team were left alone to do it. They also knew the value of the long game. There are no quick fixes. The team are now looking at allowing other members of staff to contribute content to the toolkit.

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