Wednesday, April 28, 2004

The education design and development process

Just last week I presented a poster with others involved in a university-wide project aimed to accelerate the development of units across most faculties, to provide a 'showcase' of exemplar units using online technologies.

It was an interesting activity and although a small-ish turnout, got many people talking especially about experiences of processes.

With every development a different approach was taken but within a similar process. The developments are dependent on many factors mostly consisting of;
- level of skills of those involved
- roles of those involved
- motivation of those involved
- rationale or agenda of those involved.

As you can see it's all about the people! Without people there is no process! I was keen to not just talk about or display in my poster what was developed, but attempt to highlight the intangible developments of the collegial relationship between myself as education designer and the academic, and the collaboration with multimedia artists and developers to bring a 'product' together. In using the word product, there were 2, a CD-Rom and a webCT site, at the one level, and mutliple intangible products at another level - things like negotiating a "common dialogue" between education designer and academic to vocalise each other's understanding of moments occurring in the development over three months. Gradually, a "shared meaning" resulted from active and reflective conversations between the two.

This relationship brought professional development processes to the fore, as well as making the process of development more explicit, another 'product'. As education designer, I am now more familiar with sytematic processes which support (and sometimes confuse!) the development process. I am also aware of an increase in my own confidence in supporting academics during this process, with a greater understanding of elements and moments that occur in the development process.

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