The dreaded ref….


So it’s REF (Research Excellence Framework) time again and the game of which publications to submit, and I have to say I am not having a good time. Publications are rated on a scale of 1 – 4, which 4 being internationally excellent. My book ‘Designing for learning in an open world’ was reviewed as ‘a major contribution to educational technology’, a strong three with elements of four. Hmmm who uses the phrase ‘Educational Technolog’ these days? Gutted. If that isn’t a four nothing I have done is! A chapter in a UNESCO/COL book on a review of Open Educational Resources and the OPAL initiative was reviewed as a strong three. But two papers I put forward on Cloudworks (one in Computers and Education and one in AJET) were assessed as twos! So now the game is to find alternatives. Below is a list of publications I am considering. Need to narrow this down to a couple, no idea how to do that!

1.             Conole, G. (submitted), A new classification schema for MOOCs, submitted to the INNOQUAL journal.

INNOQUAL is a newly established journal, associated with the European Foundation for Quality in E-Learning (EFQUEL). The paper is timely given the current interest in MOOCs. It describes a new classification schema, based around 12 dimensions.

2.             Conole, G. (2013), Tools and resources to guide practice, in R. Sharpe and H. Beetham (Eds), Rethinking pedagogy in a digital age, 2nd Edition, London: Routledge Falmer.

This is a popular book, which has been widely cited. The chapter provides an overview of Learning Design tools and their associated characteristics.

3.             Conole, G. (2012), The state of the art of the use of technology in distance education, in O. Zawacki-Richter and T. Anderson (Eds), Online Distance Learning – Towards a Research Agenda, Athabasca: Athabasca University Press

The chapter provides an overview of the use of technology in distance education. It also discusses theory and methodology associated with the field, drawing on an ESRC-commissioned study of interdisciplinarity in Technology-Enhanced Learning (TEL). It summarises a review of Web 2.0 technologies and their associated characteristics.

4.             Conole, G. (2012), Learning in an open world, in R. Brooks, A. Fuller and J. Waters (Eds), Changing Spaces of Education: New Perspectives on the Nature of Learning, London: Routledge

This chapter is as a result of an invited talk at Southampton University as part of an ESRC research seminar series. The chapter critiques the question ‘What is likely to be the impact of an increasingly ‘open’ technologically mediated learning environment on learning and teaching in the future?’ It begins by describing the characteristics of new technologies and provides some examples of how these can be used to promote different pedagogical approaches. It outlines a set of pros and cons of different technologies. It then describes a number of facets of openness, namely: open design, open delivery, open research and open evaluation.

5.             Conole, G. (2010), Stepping over the edge: the implications of new technologies for education, In M. J. W. Lee & C. McLoughlin (Eds.), Web 2.0-based e-learning: Applying social informatics for tertiary teaching. Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

The chapter focuses on the implications of Web 2.0 technologies and how they are changing learning and teaching practices. It references a taxonomy I developed for classifying tools according to how they are being used, and using this to compare how Web 2.0 tools are different from Web 1.0 tools. It provides examples of different ways in which Web 2.0 tools are being used in Education. It then provides an account of the characteristics of new technologies and the impact on practice. It concludes by considering the implications for learners, teachers and support staff, and institutions. It provides two case study, drawing on research I was involved with: new approaches to design, and new metaphors for describing digital interactions.

6.             Conole, E., Galley, R. and Alevizou, P. (2011), Frameworks for understanding the nature of interactions, networking and community in a social networking site for academic practice, IRRODL, Vol 12, No. 3, 119-138.

The paper reviews the literature on interactions and communities online and uses this to evaluate a social networking site for sharing learning and teaching ideas, Cloudworks.

7.             Conole, G. (2010), Facilitating new forms of discourse for learning and teaching: harnessing the power of Web 2.0 practices, Open Learning, Vol.25, No. 2, June 2010, 141-151.

This paper is a result of an invited keynote at the Cambridge Interactional Conference on Open and Distance Learning. It draws on the result carried out as part of the JISC-funded Open University Learning Design Initiative. It describes the characteristics of Web 2.0 technologies and how they can be used in learning and teaching. It puts forward a number of reasons why Web 2.0 technologies have not had the anticipated impact on education. The methodology is: user-centred, theory-based and critically reflective and evolving, drawing on a range of sources of data (desk research, interviews, focus groups, workshop evaluations, observations, web statistics, etc.) to develop a rich picture of users’ practices and perspectives in relation to the use of technology to support their learning and teaching activities. It describes how this approach was used to evaluation a social networking site, Cloudworks. In addition to provide stats associated with the site and a description of how it is being used, the paper describes the use of the site during the Cambridge conference.

8.             Conole, G. (2010), Bridging the gap between policy and practice: a framework for technological intervention, Journal of e-learning and knowledge society, vol. 6, no.1, February 2010, 13-27. 

This paper is the result of an invited keynote at the VI Congresso Nazionale della SIe-L: E-learning, creatività ed innovazione in Salerno. It argues that despite the potential of new technologies to promote learning and teaching, there is a gap between the promote and the reality. It puts forward a framework for more effective uptake of technologies,  which considers the relationship between policy, research and practice.