Technology in education and training: a leadership issue

February 4, 2009

A joint event between Becta and the MoD looking at the transformative impact that using learning technologies can have on education and training.

I delivered a ten minute presentation on how mobile learning is having an transformative impact at Gloucestershire College.

It is always a challenge to deliver a 61 slide presentation in just ten minutes!

No it wasn’t death by Powerpoint (partly as I was using Keynote on a Mac) but think of it as more as a video with a narration by me.

Always disappointed that I have only ten minutes which never allows time for the audience to think about what I am presenting on, no time for discussion, debate, reflection; no opportunity to engage with the technology, use the technology.

Ten minutes is never enough.

However it went down really well with the audience.

Though to be honest there was thirty minutes at the end of the day which did give an opportunity, but it was just thirty minutes.

Okay what about the rest of the day?

Well as is typical at these events, lots of presentations, lots of content, lots of Powerpoint slides, but I wonder if much learning happened? Certainly according to the feedback it stimulated debate and thought, so maybe I am being a little negative.

I know that at these events that part of the issue is that the organisers and stakeholders feel that they need to cram the event full of short presentations in order to “transfer information” and meet the needs of the differing stakeholders, as in everyone has to have their say and present their view or vision.

I would argue that sometimes you need to take a step back and ask yourself, what is the aim of the event, what are you trying to get out of the event?

As a delegate you should also be asking yourself what are you expecting from the event and what preparation did you do prior to the event?

The whole day was not entirely presentations and there was a panel session, some discussion sessions and a hands-on session. My view though was that the weighting was wrong with the presentations taking up too much of the day.

Or is it that I just don’t like listening to lots of presentations.

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