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Anna Greathead

Resistance is (not) futile?

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What will all of this mean for me?

Human nature is essentially self-centred. Any new project, innovation, change or progress will be assessed by individuals by how it will affect them. However successful learning analytics promises to be in terms of creating better environments and activities to foster better learning - the individuals who will need to change their practices to accommodate change will, at least initially, think about what will change for them. Educators may have concerns about increased workload, they may have concerns about their own ability to manage the newly complex world of blended learning and fear that their inability to grasp and engage with it may have consequences for their own careers, they may not really understand what is being asked of them or why change is being implemented which will compromise their engagement.

Why are we doing this?

Changes in LMS or VLE in any institution is likely to be made at a high level but working out the nuts and bolts of the new technology and process falls to the educators at the 'coal face'. The coal face workers may have less understanding of the 'big picture' or long term aims and objectives but will have to make significant, time consuming and difficult changes to their own daily practice, Without a good understanding of the strategic aims it is hard to enthusiastically participate in the strategy.

Our ancient traditions must endure!

Universities have a 'model' which has endured for many centuries in some cases (and even in new universities the 'model' is often older than the institution). The accepted model determines the selection of students, the learning activities, the curriculum, the assessment methods. Any effort to radically change any part of the model meets resistance. University leaders are expected to inspire but not actually make any changes!

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