Engaging Digital Pedagogy

Martyn Jackson
23rd March 2021

The DC's and Trainers directly teach apprenticeship learners. Pre-pandemic, this would usually have been in a face to face setting. Recently trainers and DC's have had to deliver their sessions remotely and attempt to quickly acquire skills to teach and assess digitally. Through trainer observation, it has been identified that there were some areas where the trainers lacked digital pedagogical skillsets and really struggled to engage learners, particularly in a group setting. Many of the resources that were used in the classroom were "lifted and shifted" directly into a digital platform and trainers felt they could only present information at the learners, which lead to some disengagement. I designed this resource to be used as CPD that could be revisited again and again. The intent was to introduce new ideas and inspire trainers and coaches to implement some of these ideas to gain and maintain the attention and engagement of learners. The resource can be visited many times, particularly when planning a session, and due to the navigation of the Prezi resource, the trainer can identify the specific area they most want to learn about and try (e.g. engaging questioning techniques, or using whiteboards) by clicking on that section rather than trawling through a long resources to find the relevant piece for them.

Targeted Audience

This Prezi resource is targeted at frontline staff (the trainers and Development Coaches) that I support in my role. The DC's and Trainers directly teach apprenticeship learners, traditionally in a face to face setting.

Resource effectiveness in solving the identified problem

This has been introduced as a pilot so far to help me understand and gain feedback as to how accessible Prezi was to our workforce and how this resource can be improved further. Colleagues have reported that it has some useful information in, is easy to access and nice to be in a "one stop shop." One development coach discussed this with me, which lead to him being inspired to try out breakout rooms within his digital delivery of a class. Thanks to the video on this resource, the trainer was able to set up and facilitate the breakout rooms though pedagogical practice and coaching around when and how to use them effectively is the next step. The resource was effective in inspiring trainers to try new things and reflect on them. I have found that this Prezi resource was useful for those who have currently accessed it against what I intended it to do against my objective and to the audience I am delivering to. However, I have also noted that there are areas of Prezi that may not be as accessible to the wider community. The workforce accessing this resource do not have any visual, hearing or mobility impairments however I am conscious that this type of resource may not be the most accessible for all learners in all sectors as screen readers may struggle with prezi. I have reflected more on this in the later section. The prezi can be accessed by keyboard only but this could be disengaging for someone who is looking only to get to one piece of information; using the keyboard would mean having to wade through content before arriving at the section you want to view. In short, I feel this resource worked well for my audience, however it does seem a little clunky at times and not all information is perfectly as I wanted it as it is quite hard to use the free templates. To make this resource better I would look to provide alternative resources that are more accessible, such as providing a transcript of video's and ALT text if pictures are used.

Use, impact and benefits seen from learners

This is in the initial phases of being rolled out. I wanted to find out if using Prezi was a good format for our workforce. Colleagues who have used the resource so far have found it useful in identifying new ways to deliver digitally, including the tools they can use to engage their students. One development coach discussed this with me, which lead to him being inspired to try out breakout rooms within his digital delivery of a class. Thanks to the video on this resource, the trainer was able to set up and facilitate the breakout rooms though pedagogical practice and coaching around when and how to use them effectively is the next step. The resource was effective in inspiring trainers to try new things and reflect on them. What I have found though, is that in the version of prezi I have used (the free one) is that not all features are accessible to all and as such would disadvantage learners and colleagues unless there were alternative resources supplied for those finding it difficult to access. This would cause more work for the teachers who are already pushed for time; they would be better using a resource that would be all accessible and inclusive. Whilst this is not a resource to be used with learners directly, and currently we do not have any staff members known to have accessibility requirements, disability or neurodiversity, this does not mean that the resource is future proof. As an equal opportunities employer, staff must not be discriminated against or disadvantaged and using prezi certainly could disadvantage future colleagues. Following discussions with my Edtech mentor and completing the accessibility modules, I reflected mid way through completing this resource and decided that due to the lack of accessibility I should not use Prezi to deliver to staff members and therefore abandoned this resource. (this is why there are some blank or incomplete slides) I reasoned that if I am to create a resource to use for our staff, I need to model best practice. I initially was impressed with the features and dynamic graphics of prezi and it's relative simplicity to navigate and was excited to use this but this was based on my learning needs only. If this resource worked well with some trainers, they may decide it is a good resource for their learners however, if they were not aware of the accessibility issues they would likely disadvantage some learners. Therefore, in conclusion, I won't be using Prezi internally or externally for delivering educational content and I have recommended my colleagues do the same. There are other, more accessible formats that can be used, such as the FUSE LMS platform where I can create communities, chapters, and topics that are easily navigable and accessible. This will effectively be different resources that can be accessed in one place, as per original plan, and allow the trainers to access quickly and specifically to the area they require development upon. It has been worth investigating prezi, if only to realise it doesn't suit our needs. For those who may discover this resource, or those in my pilot who may revisit it, I have added an Accessibility tab to highlight some areas where the resource is and isn't accessible. I will contact those involved in the pilot and update them of the results of my trial.

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About This Resource

Level
Level 3
Context
WBL

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