Author:  Val Lawrenson, SFHEA Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching valawreson@uclan.ac.uk  

This week I joined up with my CELT colleague Vikki Summers and Chris Melia (TELT)  to discuss the DigiLearn Practitioner programme being piloted by the College of Health and Wellbeing.

We explored ways in which components of the DigiLearn recognition programme might be incorporated in CELT CPD initiatives. One of the key components Microsoft Innovative Educator sounded like it had great potential to build capability around learning technologies. However, before we could make a decision about how and where it might be introduced to CELT PGCert LTHE or Associates Programme we decided to undertake the award ourselves. This would enable us to understand what was required in relation to knowledge, skills and importantly time commitment.

After a shaky start I was able to successful complete and submit the information needed to set up a Microsoft Community Educator profile. This was rewarded by a badge and some points. Fuelled by my success I then continued to explore the learning resources and complete further learning units. I hit a couple of stumbling blocks like copying and pasting hyperlinks (I ‘d forgotten the control C control V command). The Microsoft Innovative Educator recognition is freely accessible here

Despite some frustrations caused by my lack of IT skills l really enjoyed the learning experience and felt quite proud when I received an email and certificate from Microsoft in recognition of my achievement. Spurred on by my success I am continuing to undertake learning units provided on the Microsoft site and am now working towards Microsoft Innovative Educator Experts.

I’ve also been re imaged this last few weeks, well my surface pro not actually me. Remember if you haven’t had your Surface Pro re imaged now’s the time visit GREENBANK HUB.   I am loving the up to date functions for the surface pen. In fact this blog has been written using the pen and latest predictive text function.

Engaging with MS OneNote learning unit provided the motivation for me to revisit Notebooks l set up in 2016. They are now better organised, have standardised content sections, page layouts that included lined pages and coloured pages. I’ve been enthused by my success and consequently accessed E3HUB  to book onto OneNote training.

To help with my understanding of MS TEAMS I was added to the College of Health and Wellbeing Teams site. This has been really great. I’ve been able to see what others are doing in relation to integration of technology. I’ve picked up some good ideas and made contact with colleagues who are willing to support my learning. I have enjoyed the sense of belonging that being part of a learning community provides and I now plan to create a Microsoft Teams site for colleagues undertaking PGCert LTHE.

The week didn’t end there. I’ve also been involved in discussions with Caroline Carlin and Laura Ridings about their digitalisation of learning resources project. This is going to be a great support to those of us who now find ourselves faced with the challenge of creating learning materials to support elearn students. You can find out more about the elearn project and the proposal application process on the TELT intranet page.

That’s about it for this week. I’m looking forward to implementing what I’ve learned starting tomorrow with YouTube video clips and contrasting slide designs in my power points (find out more from MS learning resources). Let us know how technology is impacting on your practice and if feel inspired checkout Microsoft innovative educator for yourself. Who knows what the next few weeks will bring but for sure it’s going to be an exciting time as we each do our bit to ensure enactment of the Learning and Teaching strategy.


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