Frank McMahon, Director of Academic Affairs
The first DIT e-Learning Summer School held during the last week of June proved a resounding success. Over 50 DIT staff attended the mix of workshops and seminars during the five-day event – demand which necessitated a change of venue from 14 Upper Mount Street to DIT Aungier Street – and feedback from participants was extremely positive across the board.
Frank McMahon, Director of Academic Affairs, officially opened the event by logging on to the Summer School WebCT site. This is the first live WebCT module on the new DIT WebCT server, a recently installed state-of-the-art system which is the first of its kind in Britain or Ireland and will give DIT security and stability for online learning for many years to come.
A workshop each morning was facilitated by the Learning Technology Team, with help from the Learning & Teaching Centre, School of Languages, School of Hospitality Management & Tourism, the School of Media, and Distance Education. These workshops took a blended approach to theory and practice across themes, including planning, learning, designing, and implementing, the intention being to focus on the key concepts of e-learning and how to apply these concepts in the WebCT environment. Friday was devoted entirely to using WebCT as a tutor.
Each afternoon, an external expert spoke on topics including copyright, alternate approaches to learning, disability, and technology and culture. These sessions served to broaden the scope of the Summer School, offering an opportunity to engage with experts from different strands of e-learning and the online world. They were chaired by members of DIT staff with interest and knowledge of the area, and many of the discussions continued through the informal wine reception which closed each day.
The Learning Technology Team would like to thank everyone who helped to make the week so successful, in particular Staff Training & Development, Central Computer Services and Library Staff and Portering Staff in DIT Aungier Street. Particular thanks to Anne Ambrose of Aungier Street Library, and to the Faculty of Business, who gave us access to the excellent seminar rooms and training facilities of DIT Aungier Street. The experience and feedback will prove very useful in structuring and improving next year's event.