Thursday, July 26, 2018

Training Tech Professionals to Teach: Part 8

In Part 7 I looked at how curriculum for Digital Education in the vocational sector is standardized and packaged. That was a year ago and I realize now the task of designing an entire qualification is perhaps a bit too much. But a one semester course is feasible.

No Australian legislation or support structures exist for universities to share courses, but there are some consortia and informal sharing of materials. As an example, my ICT Sustainability course is run in Canada (arranged by one of my former students). Free open access course materials on teaching for computer professionals may be similarly used. This is s much about promotion. as the quality of the content. As an example, what should such a course be called?

In Part 2 I looked at the Australian Computer Society's "specialisms" for computer professionals involved in education. These were derived Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA). Since then a new version 7 of SFIA has been released. The five education skills remain, with "Learning assessment and evaluation" (LEDA) renamed "Competency Assessment":

SFIA Category Skills and ACS Membership Level
Subcategory Skill Code Levels

Skill management Learning and development management ETMG --34567

LEDA --3456-

Learning design and development TMCR ---456-

Learning delivery ETDL --3456-

Teaching and subject formation TEAC ----56-
There is also the related people management skill of "Professional development" (PDSV). It is surprising that so many separate education skills survived in the version 7 revision of SFIA. In contrast, three sustainability skills were removed (Sustainability assessment SUAS, Sustainability engineering SUEN and
Sustainability management SUMI), leaving only Sustainability (SUST). A future revision ming have just two education skills: "learning design and delivery", plus "learning management".

 ACS Certified Professionals (CP) are required to be competent in at least one "specialism" at SFIA Level 5. This makes course design easier as all the the SFIA skills are defined at this level.

The words/phrases in these skills are:
Learning management, development management, Competency Assessment, Learning design, Learning development, Learning delivery, Teaching and subject formation, Professional development, Skill management,
People management.
Some of these words are problematic, when used for university education. The term "Competency" is usually used in the vocational sector, not universities. Similarly, academics generally don't like to think of themselves "Teaching". The terms "Management" and "People management" may be seen as something for the business faculty, not computing schools.

Removing the problematic terms and duplicates suggests the course title:
Learning design and delivery for computer professionals
I ave left out "assessment" to make this shorter (it is implicit in all formal education).

As web search found no occurrence of this title. There are several hundred thousand occurrences of "Learning design and delivery". The problem will to be prevent confusion with courses on how to teach computing. Perhaps "for" should be "by":
Learning design and delivery by computer professionals
The approach I have previously taken to structure a twelve week course is to divide it up into modules and the modules into weekly topics. In this case the modules might be: Delivery (Teaching), Design (Development), Assessment and Management. This is the order a teaching program would traditionally introduce the topics, but perhaps this should be: Design, Assessment, Delivery, and Management.

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