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Quality frameworks for e-learning (SIEAD 2018, Brazil)

"Contributions from Open and Distance Education to Higher Education Quality: present and future"
"Contribuições da Educação Aberta e à Distância para uma Educação Superior de Qualidade: presente e futuro"

In this presentation I will suggest using a quality framework to help you think about and improve quality of e-learning. I start with some general observations about quality and the need for quality frameworks. I then discuss two specific frameworks: the well-established E-xcellence benchmarks for e-learning, and the OpenupEd framework which as been specifically aligned at MOOCs. Finally I return to some more practical advise, particularly about thinking about the learning design of a course at an early stage.

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Quality frameworks for e-learning (SIEAD 2018, Brazil)

  1. 1. Quality frameworks for e-learning Jon Rosewell, The Open University (UK) INTERNATIONAL SEMINAR ON OPEN AND DISTANCE EDUCATION (SIEAD-BR 2018) Contributions from Open and Distance Education to Higher Education Quality: present and future 22nd October 2018
  2. 2. 174,000 students Formal, paid-for, degrees Supported distance learning Open access 50 years (nearly!) 60 million visitors Non-formal, free OER, open courseware Since 2006 ( 1999) 8 million participants MOOC platform Many HE partners Open courseware platform CC-BY-SA-NC Broadcast TV partner OU/BBC audience: 265 million views Informal learning
  3. 3. Rise of e-learning? • Global demand for HE • MOOCs • Blended learning on campus • Society needs life-long learning – upskilling, reskilling • Short learning programmes? UK undergraduate numbers Universities UK, Patterns and trends in UK higher education 2018
  4. 4. Quality
  5. 5. What do we mean by ‘quality’ in HE? • Compliance & consumer protection – Accreditation – Guarantee of uniform standards • Reputation – Recruit good students, produce good graduates • Quality enhancement / Process improvement – Institutional mission – Stakeholder engagement – Measures of added value (‘learning gain’)
  6. 6. Approaches to QA in e-learning • Compliance or enhancement? • Process or product? • Input elements? • Pedagogical models? • Outcome measures? • Self-assessment or external review? • Scorecard? Benchmarking against others? Holistic: emphasis on process & context as well as product
  7. 7. Quality frameworks ICDE report on quality models 2015 • Review of quality frameworks • Ideally: • Multifaceted – many measures, holistic • Dynamic – flexible when technology changes • Mainstreamed – improvement through individuals • Representative – balance stakeholders • Multifunctional – e.g. external recognition, plan for improvement, create quality culture Ebba Ossiannilsson, Keith Williams, Anthony F. Camilleri, and Mark Brown (2015) Quality models in online and open education around the globe: State of the art and recommendations, ICDE Report
  8. 8. A generic framework for QA in HE Ebba Ossiannilsson, Keith Williams, Anthony F. Camilleri, and Mark Brown (2015) Quality models in online and open education around the globe: State of the art and recommendations, ICDE Report
  9. 9. European Standards & Guidelines (ESG) and e-learning 1.1 Policy for QA 1.2 Design and approval of programme 1.3 Student-centred learning, teaching & assessment 1.4 Student admission, progression, recognition & certification 1.5 Teaching staff 1.6 Learning resources and student support 1.6 Information management 1.8 Public information 1.9 Ongoing monitoring and periodic review 1.10 Cyclical external quality assurance
  10. 10. ENQA: Considerations for QA of e-learning • Recently published! • Supplement to ‘European Standards and Guidelines’ 2015 • Additional guidance and indicators Huertas et al (2018) ENQA Occasional Papers, No. 26
  11. 11. E-xcellence
  12. 12. E-xcellence label Manual
  13. 13. Organisation of resources Strategic Management a high level view of how the institution plans its e- learning Curriculum Design how e-learning is used across a whole programme of study Course Design how e-learning is used in the design of individual courses Course Delivery the technical and practical aspects of e-learning delivery Staff Support the support and training provided to staff Student Support the support, information and guidance provided to students
  14. 14. Sample benchmark Curriculum design 8. … 9. Curricula are designed to enable participation in academic communities via social media tools. These online communities provide opportunities for collaborative learning, contact with external professionals and involvement in research and professional activities. 10.…
  15. 15. Sample indicators • There are institutional policies relating to the provision of online community spaces for student- student and student-teacher interactions. • Curriculum designers specify clearly the educational role that student-student interaction plays in their programmes. • Criteria for the assessment of student online collaboration exist and are applied consistently across programmes and courses. At excellence level • Teaching staff are supported by formal and informal staff development activity in the use of online tools for community building. • The institution works closely with professional bodies in the development of online professional communities. • Innovative assessment approaches, such as online collaborative work, peer assessment and self- assessment, form a part of the institution’s practice in this area.
  16. 16. Benchmarking as quality enhancement tool • Statement of best practice – Suggested indicators • Collecting evidence – Can be specific to each university • Identification of weaknesses & strengths • …leading to roadmap of actions for improvement
  17. 17. Different ways to use E-xcellence • Informal self-assessment using QuickScan – Identify ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ spots • Full internal self-assessment – Stakeholders collect evidence – Prepare roadmap of improvement actions • Integrate with institutional process – Embed selected benchmarks in internal process • EADTU E-xcellence Associates Label – Self-assessment, roadmap, external review  recognition by EADTU NB: Resources such as manual and benchmarks are freely available!
  18. 18. Lessons learned
  19. 19. Participant feedback • Framework – Quickscan is valuable to structure discussion – Completeness of the framework is appreciated • Team working / stakeholders – People exchange perspectives with other departments • External perspective – Exchange of experience between the evaluators and staff was valuable – New ideas surfaced for course design • Reflection – A valued ‘moment of reflection’ on quality – People become aware of choices and implementations – Gives insight into strengths and weaknesses • Analysis – Opportunity to formulate e-learning policy – Provides foundations for decision making
  20. 20. Issues when introducing e-learning
  21. 21. Detailed issues • Workload management (of staff) • E-learning strategy • Academic communities / social media • Interactivity / e-learning tools Non-issues: • Reliability / performance (of VLE) • Student support generally – Not a ‘problem’ but much activity
  22. 22. MOOC quality
  23. 23. Why worry about MOOC quality? Students – know what they are committing to Employers – recognition of content and skills Authors – personal reputation, 'glow' of success Universities / providers – brand reputation Funders – philanthropists, government, investors Quality agencies – on behalf of all above
  24. 24. Are MOOCs different from e-learning? • MOOC vs Higher Education e-learning – Short, free, no entry requirements • MOOC participants – Motivations differ from degree students – Completion may not be not their goal But a MOOC is a Course so maybe it should be judged like any other HE course?
  25. 25. OpenupEd Quality Label • Derived from E-xcellence – Lightweight process • Self-assessment • Formal label – External review
  26. 26. OpenupEd MOOC features • Openness to learners • Digital openness • Learner-centred approach • Independent learning • Media-supported interaction • Recognition options • Quality focus • Spectrum of diversity
  27. 27. OpenupEd MOOC benchmarks • Derived from E-xcellence benchmarks • For the institution: – To be checked every 3-5 years – 21 benchmark statements, in six groups: Strategic management, Curriculum design, Course design, Course delivery, Staff support, Student support • For the course: – To be checked for each MOOC – 11 benchmark statements
  28. 28. Benchmarks – course level 22 A clear statement of learning outcomes for both knowledge and skills is provided. 23 There is reasoned coherence between learning outcomes, course content, teaching and learning strategy (including use of media), and assessment methods. 24 Course activities aid participants to construct their own learning and to communicate it to others. 25 The course content is relevant, accurate, and current. 26 Staff who write and deliver the course have the skills and experience to do so successfully. 27 Course components have an open licence and are correctly attributed. Reuse of material is supported by the appropriate choice of formats and standards. 28 The course conforms to guidelines for layout, presentation and accessibility.
  29. 29. Quick scan
  30. 30. NA: Not achieved PA: Partially achieved LA: Largely achieved FA: Fully achieved Quick scan
  31. 31. OL: Openness to learners DO: Digital openness LC: Learner-centred approach IL: Independent learning MI: Media-supported interaction RO: Recognition options QF: Quality focus SD: Spectrum of diversity Quick scan
  32. 32. MOOC case study: OU + FutureLearn A representative Open University MOOC … published on FutureLearn • Evidence for OpenupEd features and benchmarks • Quality emerges from joint efforts of OU (university) & FutureLearn (platform provider) • Holistic approach: • Institutional and course level • Process as well as product • Structures and processes embed a concern for quality throughout development, delivery and evaluation Jansen, D., Rosewell, J., & Kear, K. (2017). ‘Quality Frameworks for MOOCs.’ In: M. Jemni, Kinshuk, & M. K. Khribi (Eds.), Open Education: from OERs to MOOCs, 261–281. Springer
  33. 33. Learning design
  34. 34. Learning design – module map
  35. 35. Learning design – activity classes Assimilative read, watch, listen, think about, observe Finding & handling info list, analyse, collate, find, select, manipulate Communicative communicate, debate, discuss, collaborate, present Productive build, write, make, design, construct, produce, draw Experiential practice, apply, experience, investigate, perform Interactive/adaptive explore, experiment, improve, model, simulate Assessment write, demonstrate, critique, peer review, self-assess, receive feedback
  36. 36. Learning design – activity planner
  37. 37. Learning design – in practice Toetenel, Lisette and Rienties, Bart (2016). Learning Design – creative design to visualise learning activities. Open Learning, 31(3) pp. 233–244.
  38. 38. Learning design – in practice Toetenel, Lisette and Rienties, Bart (2016). Learning Design – creative design to visualise learning activities. Open Learning, 31(3) pp. 233–244.
  39. 39. What students want – and what they need “Student satisfaction is “unrelated” to learning behaviour and academic performance, a study has found. […] while students dislike collaborative learning, they are more likely to pass if they take part in it” (Times Higher Education, Feb 12th 2018) From an analysis of 100,000 students on 151 modules More at Bart Rientes, OU Inaugural Lecture
  40. 40. How does student satisfaction relate to module performance?Satisfaction Students who successfully completed module Slide from Bart Rienties Inaugural lecture
  41. 41. Summary
  42. 42. In summary… • A quality framework should underpin e-learning provision – to help create a quality culture – that is more likely to produce quality e-learning – and quality enhancement • There is no simple recipe, but… – Work in a module team – Think about learning design – Think about student support
  43. 43. THANK YOU