This is clearly a significant moment. Looking back in time to the social changes after the plague or the industrial revolution, something akin to that is happening with remote learning and the disruption of education.
I’m Dr Sarah Grant and I’m the Associate Director and Head of Operations for Imperial College Business School’s Edtech Lab. I am privileged to oversee an EdTech team within a Business School where online education is at the very heart of its strategy.
In the lead up to 2020, the adoption of technology in institutions was steadily growing. But despite seeing the value of scalable solutions, many leadership teams were waiting for widespread demand to emerge from faculty and students. They allowed individual lecturers to champion course-specific incentives, working alongside IT teams and learning designers, but held back on institution-wide projects that would disrupt those lecturers who were more reluctant to make the change. Students with print preferences were largely protected from a wholesale move to digital resources.
Were you unable to attend the Climbing the accessibility mountain… or using the ski lift webinar moderated by Becky Hartnup, and hosted by Alistair McNaught? The main points have been summarised here, along with the answers to any questions you may have around creating an accessible syllabus, and digitally inclusive learning experience.
In addition to the wider impact on universities, the transition to digital also requires resilience. This means recognising that digital is different, not only in terms of preparation and delivery, but also in how we connect with each other. This is true even without the context of a global pandemic. It is true even for those of us who are comfortable with technology, and excited by the opportunities of digital, and who are keen to learn new skills and benefit from new approaches to teaching. Zoom fatigue is now something we need to take into account, and non-prescriptive 'blue light glasses' have been seeing a huge spike in sales as people adapt to the new normal.