Priorities for e/merge Africa Activities in 2014

The Needs and Priorities survey ends with a list of 21 topics in clusters focused on pedagogy, African context, technology, and evaluation and research practices. Calls for event proposals and nominations of presenters will be issued in early January 2014. 

  • The Pedagogy cluster  includes Designing online and blended courses;  ICT Integration; Use of Open Educational Resources; Teaching and facilitating online; Using Social Media for teaching and learning; Application of new learning theories for blended learning ; Using mobile technologies for teaching and learning; Innovative new ways to teach and learn;Gamification (Horizon Report 2013); and Digital Literacies (Glister, Davidson and Goldberg)
  • The African Context cluster includes Design for our African contexts; and MOOCs in Africa
  • The Technology cluster includes Creating course content; Capturing and editing images and audio; Communication tools; and Practices from Low Tech
  • The Evaluation and Research Practices cluster includes Using social media for research;  Using ‘open tools’ for research; Innovative practices in educational technology research; andLearning Analytics (Horizon Report 2013)

topics for 2014
Graphic by Rondine Carstens

e/merge Africa Needs and Priorities Survey Report

I have worked with Jakob Pedersen to analyse the results of the survey of 148 colleagues and after lots of feedback and editing we can now share the survey report and an executive summary with you. Both documents are available for reading , download and comment in Google Drive.

The report considers: 1) The e/merge Africa membership profile; 2) Institutional factors for e-learning skills development; 3) Social media practices of respondents; 4) Self-assessed skills and professional development priorities by respondents; 5) Preferred modes of involvement in e/merge Africa; 6) Topics suggested for practice based and research activities; and 7) Topics for e/merge Africa events in 2014. If you’re pressed for time then I’d suggest that you start with the Executive Summary.

Thanks to the 148 respondents to the survey. Special thanks to Jakob Pedersen for all his precise work on the data analysis and report writing, Tutaleni Asino, Alice Barlow-Zambodla, Cheryl Brown, Mohamed Ahmed El-bahay and Kate Whittaker for the time and effort devoted to providing detailed comments on the content, language and presentation of the report. We would like to acknowledge the Ford Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York for their support of the e/merge Africa network.

Seminar Report: Blended Learning in resource Constrained Contexts

Thanks to our presenters Jerome Dooga from University of Jos and Peter Aborisade from Federal University of Technology, Akure who provided a very accessible and useful introduction to blended learning in the form of a narrated presentation and shared their own practices in the discussions and live meetings. Sixty registered users logged in to our site and 27 posted at some point in the live site forums. Fourteen seminar participants posted in the e/merge Africa Facebook group. A total of thirteen took part in the two live meetings on October 23rd and 24th respectively with the most participation being on the 24th.

Topics discussed included experiences of how technology can support learning, choosing technologies appropriate for African contexts, the use of social media and mobile technologies, flipped classrooms and learner ownership of the learning process. The blend was adjusted to respond to challenges experienced by our presenters including an ongoing lecturer strike, power cuts and high latency connections so the live meetings relied quite heavily on text chat.

Some quotes from the seminar included:

  • I am thinking rather “technologies for teachers, and learners, and subjects, and contexts … and so on …”. It is MUCH more complicated that we tend to assume” Andy
  • Maybe we should be strengthening our traditions of exploring a variety of resources and using multiple modes of presentation, while we worry less about students coming to class or not” Lennox
  • Putting students in a class with a lecturer does not mean that teaching and learning is taking place”. (Penny)
  • Flip not only the classroom, but roles as well” (Peter)
  • There are many ways of killing a rat: If one medium fails you, try another “(Jerome)