Q2. How might you use pedagogical models to construct your online teaching?

Vicki H.M. Dale, Senior Academic and Digital Development Adviser, University of Glasgow, @vhmdale 

Blog Post

This question focuses on the use of pedagogical or conceptual models to inform the design of online learning. Why is this important? Well, we need to think critically about the role of the students and teacher in online learning, and how to promote effective engagement between them (students-teacher, and students-students) in the context of their discipline in order to ensure a high quality of online provision. It is very easy to take a translational approach to online learning, in terms of uploading traditional resources (e.g. lecture slides) to a virtual learning environment (VLE). However, is that the best experience that we can offer our learners online? Conceptual frameworks can provide a lens through which we can look at our own teaching. 

Some of the frameworks you might have heard of include Diana Laurillard’s ‘conversational’ framework’ that visualises teaching and feedback interactions between students-students and students-teacher, or Gilly Salmon’s ‘five step’ model, which seeks to scaffold the online learner journey through access, socialisation, information exchange, knowledge construction and development. Mishra and Koehler’s (2009) TPACK model was informed by earlier work by Shulman; it refers to Technological, Pedagogical and Content Knowledge domains, and the overlaps between these domains (for example, how is the signature pedagogy of your discipline reflected in the ways you use technology?). The Community of Inquiry framework by Garrison and colleagues is a conceptual model that looks at the overlapping roles of teaching presence (design and facilitation of learning), social presence (student participation and belonging) and cognitive presence (how learners construct knowledge). 

We look forward to how you are using these and other frameworks to shape online learning and teaching, the successes and/or challenges you have had using these, and what advice you would give to other educators who want to think a bit more about how to optimise learning and engagement in online courses, but aren’t sure where to start. 

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References and further reading 

Garrison, D.R., Anderson, T. and Archer, W., 2010. The first decade of the community of inquiry framework: A retrospective. The internet and higher education13(1-2), pp.5-9.  

Garrison, D.R., 2016. E-learning in the 21st century: A community of inquiry framework for research and practice. Taylor & Francis. 

Koehler, M. and Mishra, P., 2009. What is technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPACK)? Contemporary issues in technology and teacher education9(1), pp.60-70. 

Laurillard, D., 2013. Rethinking university teaching: A conversational framework for the effective use of learning technologies. Routledge. 

Salmon, G., 2012. E-moderating: The key to online teaching and learning. Routledge. 

Salmon, G., 2013. E-tivities: The key to active online learning. Routledge. 

About the Author

Following Bachelor and Master degrees in Archaeology and Archaeological Computing respectively, and with over 26 years’ experience working in higher education (at the University of Glasgow, Royal Veterinary College, and UCL), Vicki’s roles have largely focused on learning technologies and self-directed learning. As well as being a Senior Academic and Digital Development at the University of Glasgow, focusing on staff development around active and blended learning, she is currently the Secretary of ALT-ELESIG (the Association for Learning Technology’s learner experience research special interest group, and co-lead for ALT Scotland with Joe Wilson from City of Glasgow College. She is a Certified Member of ALT and CMALT assessor, and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.  

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