13 July: Innovative pedagogical approaches for blended learning at the University of Namibia: Flipped Classroom

Dr. Maggy Beukes-Amiss, Director at the Centre for Open, Distance and eLearning (CODeL) University of Namibia and Mr Andre Joubert, Coordinator; Digital Media, Centre for Open, Distance and eLearning (CODeL)

Format: One hour webinars Thursday 13 July at 1 pm (SAST)

Time converter at worldtimebuddy.com

The advent of new technologies in education for teaching and learning activities is not without challenges. One of these challenges is the pitfall of using new technologies without adding much value to the teaching and learning process. Using Dr. Ruben Puentedura’s SAMR Model, this challenge involves using technology to simply substitute for what has always been done before technology came into the equation. This results in mere enhancement of the teaching and learning activities.

For technology to add value to the teaching and learning processes, it should have a transformative impact. In its effort to maximise the impact of technology at the University of Namibia, the Centre for Open, Distance and eLearning (CODeL) opted to adopt blended learning using the Flipped Classroom approach. Flipped Classroom involves inverting the teaching process whereby teaching content is delivered prior to class time so that student activities take place in the classroom.

This webinar describes how CODeL utilises a lecture capturing tool called Panopto to implement the Flipped Classroom blended learning approach. The webinar seeks to answer the following questions:

  1. How does the learning context of the University of Namibia render itself to the Flipped Classroom approach?
  2. What are the opportunities and challenges that educators and students face regarding online and blended learning at the University of Namibia?
  3. What lessons has CODeL learned from initial Flipped Classroom implementation?

Dr Maggy Beukes-Amiss is a Namibian with over 20 years’ experience in teaching Library and Information Science as well as ICT related subjects at the University of Namibia, within the Department of Information and Communication Studies. She has a PhD in Computer-integrated Education (CiE) through the University of Pretoria, South Africa. She served as Head of Department (2005-2007) and again for another three years (2012-2014). Currently she is the Director of the newly established Centre for Open, Distance and eLearning (CODeL) at the University of Namibia. She is also a Council member of the University of Namibia, the highest decision making body of the University.

She is particularly passionate about eLearning capacity-building activities through the use of open source software packages and research focusing on eLearning technologies and activities. She is a member of the eLearning Committee of the University of Namibia and used to serve on the Namibian Open Learning Network Trust (NOLNet) eLearning Committee as Coordinator of eLearning activities within the entire country for over seven years, until 2011. She has been involved in a number of eLearning capacity-building activities in Namibia and various countries in Africa on behalf of NOLNet, GIZ and GESCI.

She served as Chairperson of the eLearning Africa 2013 Local Organising Committee and is a reviewer of conference papers for eLearning Africa and Online Educa Berlin, on behalf of ICWE GmbH, Germany, 2011 to date. She is a certified ICDL trainer (2007) and an Expert of New Learning Technologies (2005) through TeleAkademia of Furtwagen, Germany.

She has served as an ICT Steering Committee member of the ICT Steering Committee of the Ministry of Education in Namibia since 2005 and in addition, has been the Deputy Chairperson of the ICT Steering Committee since 2012. She was a contributor of the national ICT Policy and implementation plan, Tech NA!. She was a Commissioner and then Chairperson of the Board, of the regulator Namibian Communications Commission (NCC), 2006-2011. She was also appointed as the country’s eminent e-Content expert through the World Summit Award (WSA), from 2006 to date. She served as a Technical Quality Assurance Committee (TeQAC) member for the African leaders in ICT (ALICT) blended learning programme of GESCI, as well as the etutor-coordinator (training and coaching) e-tutors of the ALICT programme, 2011-2014. Another highlight in her career path is that she was the Chairperson of the Telecom Namibia Board for a 3 year period until September 2016. She has recently (April, 2016) been rewarded as “GIZ Ambassador for quality in Digital Learning”.

Mr. Andre Joubert is a Namibian with 7 years’ experience in Advertising and Multimedia workflows. He has a BA degree in advertising from the University of Namibia. Currently, he is the Coordinator: Digital media at the Centre for Open, Distance and eLearning (CODeL) at the University of Namibia. Andre and his team are also tasked with the campus wide roll out of Panopto, a lecture capture software which allows lecturers to record content for their courses, anywhere, anytime.


This webinar has ended – please view this site for past resources

19 June: Facilitating student learning through e-Assessment processes and practices – Webinar 2

Associate Professor Alan Cliff, Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT), University of Cape Town

Format: Two one hour webinars Monday 12 June and Monday 19 June, both days at 1 pm (SAST)

Second webinar:

Time converter at worldtimebuddy.com

This two-part seminar will focus on the contemporary affordances and challenges of assessing students and student work in the online learning environment.

The first part (recording available here) will focused on the overarching issues that are and should be of interest to us all:

  • The higher education environment and the need for e-learning
  • The extent to which online environments can support and provide the enabling conditions for e-learning and e-assessment
  •  The extent to which online environments support or interact with contemporary online teaching and learning issues, such as the ‘unbundling’ of higher education teaching and learning and the offerings of private higher education online learning providers

The second part will focus on e-assessment practices and address the following questions:

  • ‘Doing assessment’ online – is it a case of transferring face-to-face assessment to an online environment?
  • The affordances and challenges of online assessment – a continuum from formative to summative assessment?
  • Online assessment practices – issues of purpose; format; grading; feedback; teaching and learning

Alan Cliff is an Associate Professor and co-ordinator of the Staff Development cluster at CILT. He teaches courses in educational psychology, educational assessment and adult education to mostly postgraduate education students and convenes courses in educational assessment and evaluation for students at certificate, diploma and master’s levels. Alan has supervised master’s and PhD students in areas such as the development of literacies practices in disciplinary contexts; the validation of standardised admissions tests; the use of alternate admissions tests for admission and placement purposes; and factors that facilitate the development of electronic systems literacy in the workplace. As co-ordinator, Alan contributes to work on alignment between curriculum and student assessment, with new and established academics and professional staff. Regionally, Alan teaches courses on assessment design and academic literacy. His current research interests are in the use of theories and principles of Dynamic Assessment to facilitate student learning; and in the processes of staff development as ‘literacies practice’ and induction into professional learning communities. Alan contributes to the development of educational assessment policy in the further and higher education sectors nationally.

This seminar has ended. For resources and webinar recordings please refer to the resource page.

5 & 6 June: Innovative approaches to blended learning during times of disruptions at a University of Technology in South Africa

Dr Daniela Gachago, Centre for Innovative Educational Technology, Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), South Africa
Cheryl Belford, Department of Civil Engineering and Surveying, Faculty of Engineering, Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), South Africa
Bronwyn Swartz, Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), South Africa

Format: Two one hour webinars Monday 5 June and Tuesday 6 June, both days at 1 pm (SAST)

Join us Tuesday 6 June for the second webinar:

Time converter at worldtimebuddy.com

Blended learning is a key concern in recent times in higher education. Blended learning will manifest itself differently in different institutions as it becomes part of the core organisational culture. This seminar is part of a larger project aimed at understanding the breadth and depth of blended learning practices in the institution, with a particular focus on the use of open educational resources in teaching and learning. We will describe two lecturers’ attempts at moving their teaching and assessment into an online space during the 2016 student protests after campuses shut down and face to face teaching was not longer possible. While the disruption could be seen as trigger for innovation, they also raise difficult questions around the ethics of online learning in a context of inequality. Framed by Joan Tronto’s Ethics of Care qualities, we will explore what it means to ethically engage in open/blended practices in the context of the current higher education climate with the continued call for equal access to educational resources.

This seminar will run in two parts. Part 1 will introduce blended learning and the ethics of care and share the two lecturers’ experiences during the FMF protests. Seminar 2 will be a collaborative and reflective space, where participants will reflect on their own practices and address the following questions framed by the Ethics of Care principles:

  • How does an ethical blended learning practice look like?
  • What conditions need to be in place for an ethical blended learning practice?
  • What do we need to know about our students?
  • How does our practice relate to the institutional context?

For inspiration, please watch the following short videos by Bronwyn Swartz and Cheryl Belford:

Come and take part in the conversation on our Facebook event page

Daniela Gachago is a senior lecturer in the Centre for Innovative Educational Technology at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. Her research interests lie in the potential of emerging technologies to improve teaching and learning in higher education, with a particular focus on using technologies such as social media and digital storytelling as socially just pedagogies. She completed a PHD at the UCT School of Education where she explored the role of emotions in transforming students’ engagement across difference and a Masters in Adult Education at the University of Botswana.

Bronwyn Swartz is a lecturer on the Quality Programme in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at CPUT. She lectures Statistical Quality Techniques III and Quality Techniques IV, and supervises students research projects on both BTech and MTech level. She is passionate about her students, which prompted her to actively look for ways to support her teaching. Embracing technology for teaching has opened up a new world of possibilities for her and her students. She obtained a MTech Quality (Cum Laude) from CPUT and is currently a registered student completing a DPhil Quality Management at DUT.

Cheryl Belford is a lecturer on the Transportation Engineering Programme in the Department of Civil Engineering at CPUT. She lectures Transportation III, Transportation Planning IV and Transportation Technology IV and supervises student’s research projects on BTech level. Her research interests lie in the effect of changing mobility practices on the everyday life of commuters in South African cities. She is committed to ensuring a robust academic experience for the next generation of Civil Technologists. Her pedagogy has shifted toward Open Educational Practice as it encourages peer to peer learning and empowers her academic identity. She obtained a MEng Transportations Studies from UCT in 2008.

This seminar has ended. For resources and recordings please view YouTube Playlist above and share your thoughts and reflections in the Facebook event page