28 Feb: Interrogating our educational technology practices through critical reflection

Presenter: Nompilo Tshuma, Lecturer in the Centre for Higher Education Research,Teaching and Learning at Rhodes University

Time and Date: Thursday 28 February 2019 1pm SAST

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What impact does your use of educational technology have on your students and on your teaching? Is it enabling or hindering learning?

In order to be critically reflective about our educational technology practices, we need to move beyond the technology itself, and be aware of the context within which it is integrated. This presentation is divided into two parts: We will start our journey by exploring and reflecting on the challenges of educational technology integration in African higher education contexts. Considering the potential of educational technology to transform higher education practices and reach a wider audience, there is a need to be aware of the oppressive politics inherent in using Western-developed technologies in the African context. In the second part of the presentation, we will conceptualise, then apply, a critically reflective approach that has the potential to contribute to an emancipatory, socially just and more ethical approach to integrating educational technology in African higher education. Brookfield’s lenses for critical reflection are used to explore how critical reflection can be applied to interrogate our educational technology practices.


Brookfield’s lenses

This seminar has now ended please view the webinar recording

Nompilo Tshuma has been working with educational technology since 2005 in both student and staff development. She currently manages a range of educational technology resources, including both teaching and research related. Her academic staff development role involves supporting lecturers as they integrate technology into teaching and learning through workshops, presentations, contributing to formal qualifications and individual support. She is also a researcher in educational technology and academic staff development, and is passionate about challenging academics to be critically reflective about their use of educational technology particularly in light of the calls for transformation of higher education in South Africa. Nompilo completed her PhD in Information Systems at Rhodes (focusing on Educational Technology) in 2018.

20 November: Report back from the 2018 AECT convention

Presenters: Dr. Nicola Pallitt & Dr. Alice Barlow-Zambodla, e/merge Africa

Time and Date: Tuesday 20 November 2018, 1 pm SAST / 7 am EDT (US)

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For this year the AECT (Association for Educational Communications and Technology) conference organisers have chosen the theme “Learning for All” for this year’s convention in Kansas City, Missouri. In this report back session Nicola and Alice will share their reflections, learnings and experiences related to this conference. Over the past couple of years, the AECT has made a significant effort to promote scholarship, best practices, and leadership in the creation, use, and management of technologies for effective teaching and learning. In 2016 e/merge Africa became an affiliate organisation of AECT. This session will also discuss what opportunities this could give e/merge Africa members. This report back is also a virtual celebration of the collaboration between the two organisations. This event has ended, thank you to all who joined us – the recording of this event is available on our YouTube channel


Dr. Nicola Pallitt is a lecturer in the Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT) at the University of Cape Town. She is part of the e/merge Africa team and co-convenes the Facilitating Online courseEducational Technology Lecturer, Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT), University of Cape Town
I have been involved in a variety of curriculum innovation initiatives and assist university staff with blended and online learning design. I co-teach on a postgraduate programme in educational technology and co-convene the e/merge Facilitating Online course. I received my PhD in Media Studies (2013) and Postgraduate Diploma in Higher Education Studies (2014) from the University of Cape Town. My research interests include digital games, open badges, social media and ePortfolios in Higher Education. I hope to engage fellow researcher-practitioners in research that takes critical, contextual and pedagogically informed approaches to educational technology. I am an avid sketchnoter, networked scholar and lifelong learner. When I’m not online I’m probably doing something belly dance related or hunting for Pokemon

Dr Alice Barlow-Zambodla e/Merge Africa Network Regional Coordinator for Southern and East Africa
I have a multi-disciplinary background in Agriculture, Botany and ICTs for education resulting in lecturing and research experience totalling more than 25 years at the Universities of Transkei and Kwa-Zulu-Natal, South Africa. My more recent experiences involve working as a Programme Specialist for 7.5 years at SAIDE, an educational research and development NGO. This work involved working with various tertiary institutions on the continent focussing mainly on open and distance learning programmes,  the development and use of open education resources, ICTs for Education and development, as well as the monitoring and evaluation of educational interventions. In my capacity as a Vodacom Change the World volunteer 2014-2016  I have been working with the Buffelshoek Trust  to set up and capacitate 11 ICT Centres situated at 9 rural schools in Bushbuckridge Municipality, Mpumalanga, South Africa.

1 November: A Continuum of Teachers’ e-Learning Practices

Presenter: Dr.Osman Sadeck, Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), South Africa 

Time and Date: Thursday 1 November 2018, 1 pm SAST

Format: 1 hour Webinar

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The introduction of technologies into the teaching and learning environment has implied changes to the way education plays out in an eEnvironment. Previous research has highlighted the many barriers and challenges in integration technology into teaching and learning. Technology is said to be underutilised. However there are studies that have identified that teachers are using technology in their work. Little is known about the extent of this use of technology. Accordingly less is known about teachers’ eLearning practices. Osman Sadeck’s doctoral research seeks to highlight patterns in teachers’ eLearning practices.

In this webinar, Osman will share insights from aspects of his doctoral study (which informed the paper linked below) of teachers’ e-learning practice where findings revealed that teachers’ development and progress in using technology for educational purposes can be located on continuums of adoption, use and practice. The webinar and the article linked below (authored with supervisor Johannes Cronjé) focuses on the continuums for use and practice.

Using a blend of inductive and deductive techniques data was collected from a sample of teachers known to be using technology in their work. The study was framed by the: (i) Development in use and stages of teaching and learning with technologies (UNESCO) and (ii) Technological skills developmental levels (DoE). The data from the study has highlighted patterns in the use and practice of technology integration in school education. These patterns could be mapped to continuums of use and practice. It has been found that teachers used technology for a variety of purposes: personal, administration, teaching and learning at different frequencies and at varying levels of intensity. Teachers were found to use technology for eTeaching and eLearning progressively and in ways that was aligned to their comfort zones. The way teachers’ used technology was found to be progressive from simple to innovative.

Links for interest:

Sadeck, O. and Cronjé, J. 2017. A Continuum of Teachers’ e-Learning Practices, The Electronic Journal of e-Learning, 15(5): 396–409.


Dr Osman Sadeck is a Post-Doc Researcher and overall Project Manager at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (Cape Town, South Africa) for the Assessment for Learning in Africa (AFLA) project.

He previously worked as the head of e-Learning in the Western Cape Education Department in the Western Cape Province in South Africa where he led the implementation of e-Learning across the province until his retirement in 2016. He developed the e-Vision for the province and introduced an LMS for e-Learning alongside professional development strategies that include e-Pedagogy courses. He has previously co-authored the assessment modules for the AUSAID B.Tech (Technology Education; Newave DTP & Repro cc.; 1999) and a series of school textbooks for Technology Education

Dr Sadeck has served as lead and as member on various committees developing the South African school curriculum for ICTs in Education, Engineer Graphics and Design and Technology Education in the past 20 years.

Dr Sadeck holds a MEd (e-Learning): University of Technology Sydney and a DTech: Informatics (e-Learning): Cape Peninsula University of Technology. His research field is e-Learning and ICTs in education with a focus on the practices of teachers.

Source of bio: http://oucea.education.ox.ac.uk/research/recent-research-projects/assessment-for-learning-in-africa-afla/afla-research-team/dr-osman-sadeck/

Thank you to all who took part in this event – a recording will soon be available on the e/merge Africa YouTube channel