This week’s topic of ‘Choosing Technology for Online Learning’ was particularly interesting to me, as in my current institution, the University of Lincoln, I am the Digital Education Developer (Learning Technologist) for the College of Arts. As such, I felt there was a lot I could bring to the discussion around the choice of learning technologies, however this did mean that I sometimes found it hard to navigate a path between the knowledge of learning tech that I already had and the exploration of new tools and platforms.
Thinking firstly about the learning technologies we use on a day-to-day basis, I decided to frame my response around the core tools that we support at Lincoln. The approach that we take at the institution involves have a ‘core’ suite of tools which are supported by the University and further outer rings of tools which can be used but may not be directly supported. Information on the core tools is available on our LALT blog. As such, I focused on technologies for video (Panopto), collaboration on the web (Collaborate Ultra), marking and assessment (Turnitin) and live audience response (Poll Everywhere). My own list of tools received some good responses from my peers, with Carols Garde-Martin taking forward Poll Everywhere as a tool to pilot later in the week and both Graham and Jill pointing out that the list was ‘useful stuff to know’ (Dunn, 2019). It was interesting to see what other colleagues suggested in this forum, particularly the use of Minecraft for Education which James C recommended (James C, 2019). I knew of the platform as a game, but was not aware that Microsoft had developed a version for education which has a specific application within the creative arts. I must admit, I did download the software and had a go – but I’m afraid I just couldn’t get my head around it. Perhaps this is one technology where the students are best leading the way. Finally for this section, I found Federica’s list late in the week when reviewing the forum and have to say it is a fantastic resource covering a full range of learning technologies that could be applied to any form of teaching and learning practice (Orandini, 2019). This list is a collection of all the ideas suggested by students on the module and it proves just how many varied approaches to technology there are and how useful they can be to pedagogic practice within higher education.