Academic staff take the lead : experimenting with social software at Deakin University
Samarawickrema, G., Stacey, E. and Warren, C. 2008, Academic staff take the lead : experimenting with social software at Deakin University, in ASCILITE 2008 : Hello! where are you in the landscape of educational technology? : proceedings, Deakin University : ASCILITE, [Burwood, Vic.].
This paper reports on a two staged staff development exercise to help new academic staff to integrate Web 2.0 technologies including web-based communication and some digital technologies into their curricula. It involved professional development for the teaching staff in the first stage followed by these teachers providing professional development for the course participants. The teachers engaged in a blended community of inquiry with face-to-face sessions and online work while the professional development for the course participants included technical support, training and a peer group environment with formal allocation of time for the course, finally leading to an institutionally recognised qualification. Evaluations conducted through focus group interviews revealed that collegial networks and time were important for effective professional development. The paper reflects on the successes and limitations of the model and its potential for further development. It also highlights the importance of providing professional development in a safe environment for academics to adopt technologies for teaching and learning.
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