Review into online learners’ expectations and experiences of the digital environment

We are pleased to announce the next phase of this work as we begin a review into online learners’ expectations and experiences of the digital environment. The scope of the study is broad and will consider a wide range of online learners in HE, FE and the skills sector. The review will run from March until August 2016 and will build on the Digital Student work already done in the HE, FE and skills sectors.

This is a challenging piece of work due to the highly diverse nature of online learners which includes formal and informal learners, students in fully online or blended courses, and students at all educational levels. We plan to work closely with students, educational institutions from all sectors as well as other appropriate partners. We will be establishing an online Advisory Group very shortly so watch this space if you think you have something to offer.

We are excited to be able to link this new strand of Digital Student work with the work that has been happening in parallel in the Scaling up online learning (SUOLL) project. It is always satisfying to see Jisc work being linked up like this. The Scaling up online learning project works closely with a Working Group made up from interested people across the sectors, and has recently responded to community demand for several different elements of work. If you are not familiar with this work, then go and have a look at the recent series of Scaling up online learning guides which aim to help staff understand the decisions they need to make and the processes involved around scaling up online learning at an organisational level. You can also find out about the new Online readiness tool which links closely with the guides and incorporates the same themes. This is a tool to help individuals consider their own readiness for different aspects of online learning.

Like the previous strands of this work we hope to produce some really valuable recommendations and feed into the useful tools and resources that are emerging. Follow discussions and updates on this project on Twitter using #digitalstudent #SUOLL

The team working on the review brings together experience from these two key areas of work. Lou McGill,  Tim Gray have recently worked with Heather Price from Jisc on the Scaling up online learning work and Helen Beetham has worked on Digital Student projects.


By Lou McGill

synthesis consultant

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