Online learning and digital capabilities – the theory and the reality

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Online learning and digital capabilities – the theory and the reality
Kathryn Wenczek, IT Learning Centre Manager, University of Oxford and Silke Prodinger-Leong, Client Success Consultant, Lynda.com, a LinkedIn Company

Silke Prodinger-Leong showed that there are lots of different interpretations of digital capabilities and of online learning. She shared a number of statistics which demonstrate the prevalence of online learning and it’s importance to educations future.

Lynda.com have created a playlist based on the Jisc digital capabilities framework. I’ll take a look and update this blog with my feedback on it.

Kathryn Wenczek from Oxford University talks about her implementation of Lynda.com. They had issues with capacity. Technology is updating too quickly to keep up. So they began by offering some online courses e.g. ECDL. Uptake wasn’t high. They bought a campus licence and did a soft launch to spread the word. Lots of promotion using posters, badges and social media.

Lynda has been in place at Oxford for 9 months and 4700 signed up. 1634 of those users are actively engaged. The most popular course are programming and statistics. Does this indicate we’re not doing enough to support students in this? Or are these extra-curricular studies?

The reports are limited as they decided not to provide Lynda with the necessary information. This is something they lament. Kathryn also found that the playlists need improvement to be more manageable.

The team will now review their marketing and offer Lynda learning labs to provide a quiet physical space for studying Lynda materials. They are also hoping to flip the classroom more.

So has Lynda worked for them? Seems so. In my opinion Lynda is a beneficial addition to a robust training and support programme NOT an alternative. To be truly useful in HE we need to embed it in our teaching by flipping the classroom, creating custom playlists and encouraging a culture of self-help. It should also be embedded within our CPD provision. Not have it seen as an alternative.

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