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Archive for the ‘UK PSF’ Category

So this is where the assessed part of my journey ends – but my project is clearly in its infancy! I have spoken to students, to my colleagues and to placement settings about the usefulness of facilitating online sessions for students out on placement for long stretches of time. They are unanimous in their views that it is a great idea (in principle). I have read around the subject – both in terms of the theory around blended learning, using synchronous methods of teaching and learning and generally about digital technologies and digital communities, as well as looking for evidence of where this kind of learning has been used before, and what the challenges and benefits are. I have explored different online platforms and have concluded that I will utilise Blackboard Collaborate. I have requested training in this so hope to be able to run the first session in January. I need to plan some ‘icebreaking’ activities for the initial session. I have communicated with the student group but unsurprisingly heard nothing back – I will get in contact again after the Christmas break. I will evaluate the sessions, both as we are going along, and at the end of their placements – mostly using qualitative methods. I will attempt to pull this together into something to write up, to contribute to the research about how social work students can develop effectively on placement and whether synchronous, informal support can aid this process. And I will try the process again with our 3rd years who go out on their final 100 day placements in April 2013. All exciting stuff!

In terms of the ALT module, I have loved every minute of it. Choosing this option was a deliberate decision to push myself out of my comfort zone, and embrace an area that I had hitherto been a little afraid of. But I have learnt that there is nothing to be afraid of, and that the right technology, used in the right way can enhance the student (and teaching) experience no end. I have begun tweeting, and although very much still a novice, I intend to explore how we could use this with our students. I have developed my ‘toolbox’ of ideas and skills along the way, and had the opportunity to learn from and alongside some fabulous tutors (thank you Cristina and Pete) and a wonderful cohort of colleagues. This is very much the start of my digital journey and as Doug Belshaw says ‘the ability of people to be creative… requires a new dynamic between teacher and learner. Aspects of randomness and discovery should flow through learning experiences, finishing with opportunities to synthesise these experiences. This sense making is often where the ‘creativity’ occurs. The learner joins the dots in new, in interesting and contextually-relevant ways’ (no date, cannot find the original source for this, but see http://dougbelshaw.com/blog/2012/03/23/my-tedx-talk-on-the-essential-elements-of-digital-literacies-video/ for plenty of info of Doug writing/talking about his eight essential elements of digital literacies) I feel fortunate to have had the chance to be the learner that Belshaw writes about, as I feel this module has been a massive process of me firstly having the dots revealed to me, and now I am starting to join them up.

Finally (for now!) I want to end with a quote by Diana Laurillard:
‘Teachers need to know more than their subject – they need to know the ways it can come to be understood, the ways it can be misunderstood, what counts as understanding: they need to know how individuals experience the subject. However they are neither required nor enabled to learn these things’ (Laurillard 2002 p3) Thankfully the opportunity to do the PGCAP at Salford University has given me the opportunity to start learning these types of things. I believe that for all who hold the powerful role of ‘teacher’ this type of learning should be essential. The UKPSF supports this view, and I look forward to a future in higher education where those responsible for facilitating learning have the skills and abilities to do this effectively and to a high quality, so that learners can have the very best experience possible.

The end…. (Although it feels like ‘Return of the Jedi’ when you know that there is now a 3 part prequel to Star Wars. I am really very much at the beginning!)

Laurillard D (2002) Rethinking University Teaching: a conversational framework for the effective use of learning technologies 2nd Edition. RoutledegeFalmer; New York.

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So the day has come… tomorrow myself and my 5 wonderful colleagues in Action Learning Set 3 will be delivering the whole session on ‘Digital literacies’. The session has been planned (well in advance, it has to be said!)  and it feels like it might go well. It’s been a pleasure working with a bunch of people with such a ‘can do’ and proactive attitude, rather than looking at the obstacles! We have what appears to be one of the top writers/speakers about the field of DL at the moment doing a half hour online Q&A with us, which is really exciting. Watch this brill short film explaining what DL is all about:

The whole aspect of DL has hge implications for teaching and learning, and for engagement/inclusion and quality assurance within higher education. When considering the UK PSF in relation to DL, they can be applied to all the standards, but particularly A4 in Areas of Activity; K2, K3 and K4 in Core Knowledge; and V2 and V4 in Professional Values.

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About the UK PSF

Throughout my posts I will provide evidence of meeting the Dimensions of the UK PSF Framework – where I demonstrate evidence I will follow the sentence with the relevant component and a link to a separate page where all the UK PSF are listed.

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In memory of an inspiring young doctor who mused about life & death through her terminal cancer illness. Her husband, Chris now keeps the page updated.

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