Friday, 27 April 2018

Talking about Digital Competence for Education

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On 23 April 2018, I was honoured with an interview about digital competence for education hosted by IneveryCrea, and had the opportunity of talking about all the work and advances that have been made on this matter for the last 5 years, thanks to the work of a wide range of nationwide experts, stakeholders and teachers at all levels, who have been working in collaboration with the National Institute of Educational Technologies and Teacher Training within the Spanish Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, in order to acknowledge and certify Spanish teachers' digital competence as well as to help them improve the aforesaid competence through online learning roadmaps.

Here you are the video clip that summarizes this interview (in Spanish):



You can also read the full transcript at the IneveryCrea site where it has been originally published: #HablamosDE Competencia Digital Educativa. Desarrollo, mejora y certificación.

I would like to sincerely thank all the people that have been made this interview possible, for their interest in this key competence for teachers' professional development, for their warm dissemination of the interview and the availability they have shown at all times, but very especially, I would like to mention Carmen Iglesias, community manager at IneveryCrea, for her kindness and generosity.

It has been a true honour to be part of it all. 

I hope you find the interview interesting and useful for your own continuous professional development.

External links:



AprendeINTEF: the online learning site for the continuous professional development of teachers by INTEF.




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Thursday, 19 April 2018

WEBINAR: APRENDIZAJE EN LÍNEA Y COMPETENCIA DIGITAL EDUCATIVA

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You are invited to join me on 24 April at 18:00, Spanish time, for an online webinar about online learning and digital competence for education (conducted in Spanish).


I will be talking on how the 'AprendeINTEF' learning experiences may help teachers improve their digital competence.


Check your time zone if you need so.


Hope you enjoy it and find it useful!



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Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Competencia Digital Educativa - Desarrollo, mejora y certificación

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Entrevista sobre los avances del Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte, a través del Instituto Nacional de Tecnologías Educativas y Formación del Profesorado en materia del desarrollo, la mejora y la certificación de la Competencia Digital Educativa. Abril 2018.


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Thursday, 1 March 2018

Content Curation in Education

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Why is content curation important for educational purposes?

Check it out at http://stopandlearnenglish.blogspot.com.es/2014/02/why-is-content-curation-important-when.html

When gathering resources for teaching and learning, being able to curate content solidly is essential.

Having a webmix, a virtual desktop, a board, or a list where you can add your favourite or most frequently used resources and have them at hand will be extemely helpful and save you a lot of time.

Besides, if you choose a collaborative content curation tool, the process will be richer and wider!

Here you are some tools to start curating content for your lessons:

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.es/
Symbaloo: https://www.symbaloo.com
Pearltrees: https://www.pearltrees.com/
List.ly: https://list.ly/



To learn more about content curation and a lot more challenges to become a digitally competent teacher, join any of these open online nano learning experiences!
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Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Do the right thing!

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Digital literacy is surfing the net with a critical eye. Designing a digital project, a digital ebook, including digital resources and content in it, often involves remixing content created by others.
Digital citizenship implies the responsible use of online images, videos, sounds and so forth. We must learn to respect copyright, and to identify where we have found images, text, sounds, videos, and so on, so we can teach our students to be respectful too.

Creative Commons licensing has become a simple way for individuals to define how their works can be used.

The author of the content can use the free licensing tool from the Creative Commons Organization to choose the best license. An image and text is generated for the author to post along with their content such as the one shown below.

Example:

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.


In general, permission to use content, elements and resources ranges from those in the public domain (anyone can use them) to those that are copyright and require permission to use.

Creative Commons licenses grant permission in advance. All Creative Commons licenses require attribution, meaning you have to credit the author.
Check The Educator's Guide to Copyright, Fair Use and Creative Commons, and do the right thing!


Public domain resources are free and can be used without any restrictions.
Public Domain works are those which:
  • go into public domain because they lack copyright
  • or their copyright is out of date
  • their author has granted them to the public domain.
Although they are completely free and do not need to be attributed, it is always advisable to cite the source.


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Thursday, 22 February 2018

Creating avatars

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What is an avatar

Generally speaking, an avatar is the embodiment of a person or idea. However, in the computer world, an avatar specifically refers to a character that represents an online user. 

Avatars are commonly used in multiplayer gaming, online communities, and Web forums.

In the educational world, you can create avatars to protect yourself online, to develop and reflect on your digital identity, or to reflect on your digital footprint.

Digital tools to create avatars







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Monday, 19 February 2018

Learning journals

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What is a learning journal

A learning journal does not have to be anything fancy. It can be just a few sheets of paper or a small note book that you can carry around with you or you can use an electronic one. 

It can help you look forwards by developing your ideas and plans for new learning experiences, and backwards by reflecting on your thoughts, feelings and actions about new activities you have tried. 

To Keep in Mind

The learning journal is not a simple summary of a project that you have designed or a showcase of the artifact you have created, but it must also include:

- critical cuestions and problems encountered,

- your reaction to specific ideas or questions that have come up while doing an activity or project,

- any discovery you have made in your project or activity, at an educational, social or personal level,

- your reflections about how the project or activity are connected with your own life.

Think before writing

It might be worthwile to think about these overall questions for a moment before writing an entry in a learning journal:

- What have I learned along the activity/project?

- What added value does this learning have for my professional development/personal life/educational background?

- What task/stage/mission has been the easiest/most difficult one while carrying out the activity/project?

- What task/stage/mission has been the most/least interesting?

- What have I found most surprising out of all my learning?

Digital tools to create a learning journal




https://www.blogger.com/







https://en.wordpress.com/



https://www.tumblr.com/











Help with digital tools


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Sunday, 18 February 2018

Open Online Learning Experiences: Designing Teacher Training for Digitally Connected Teachers

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In November 2017, I was given the opportunity to take part in a round table at the Eminent 2017 European Congress to share the initiative on open online learning experiences for continuous professional development that the Spanish Ministry of Education launched back in 2014, and whose evolution is regarded as a successful study case.

I would like to share the support slideshow I used for my delivery in Brussels then, as well as an extended summary of what this teacher training initiative consists of:


Through the National Institute of Educational Technologies and Teacher Training, the Spanish Ministry of Education regards open online teacher training as a way to train teachers on competencies and skills, to open up training so as to foster personalized learning, learning by doing, autonomous training, and training which seeks for shared knowledge and educational practice exchanges, which survive beyond the actual training periods.

Besides, we seek for providing online training that covers the various different learning styles that teachers may have, and that is why we offer three types of open online teacher training: MOOC, NOOC, and SPOOC.

Our massive open online courses are a training roadmap that focuses on content dissemination and include an activity plan that opens to collaboration. They are not based on topic delivery, but promote online learning communities, autonomous learning, and social connections, and where the role of the facilitators, mentors and the whole dynamization team is essential.

The Massive Open Online Courses that INTEF run have a connectivist approach, the interactions and connections at social networks play a key role and rather than tutors, we have facilitators and energyzers who guide and accompany participants all along the learning experiences.

The main goal that our catalogue of massive open online courses pursue is that participants learn by doing and produce digital artifacts which showcase their learning progress, that help them improve their digital competences and that they can set up learning diaries full of learning evidences which endorse the whole experience.

From only offering a pilot catalogue of 3 MOOC in 2014, we have evolved into offering a series of Nano Open Online Learning Experiences (NOOC), whose estimated effort is 180 minutes and that are oriented to achieving a single goal, to developing or improving a single digital competence, whose learning evidence is a single digital artifact.

Besides, we are now offering Self- Paced Online Open Courses to foster learning anywhere, anytime, at participants’ own rhythm, and that catalogue completes the whole circle of the Open Teacher Training that we are running at the Ministry of Education in Spain.

The concept underlying the whole offer is The Common Digital Competence Framework For Teachers, whose latest version was published in October 2017, so all our online training initiatives are based on that framework, divided into 5 Areas, 21 sub-competencies and six competence levels.


Participants who succesfully complete an open online course are endorsed with open digital badges.
The Open Badge Backpack that INTEF is continuously developing is fully compatible with our Open Online learning environments and it is a safe, open standard badge backpack, also manageable with other backpacks which support open standards.

The badges that INTEF issue are serious badges, which acknowledge achieved goals and professional competencies. Participants can share them in social networks, organise them in collections, show them in their INTEF Open Online Training Profiles, export them to their digital sites and to any other backpack that they might use.

This Backpack was born with the aim of becoming a professional portfolio of digital micro credentials that favor a rethought education, which does not train teachers based on the hours they spend on their own professional training, but on the competencies and skills they acquire and improve when continuously developing professionally.

Currently it is also connected with the Portfolio for the Digital Competence of Teachers, an online service that we have opened in October 2017, and which is the service to acknowledge teachers’ digital competence, based on self-assessment and an evidence dossier, both of which are gathered in a digital competence passport, which proves the teachers’ level of competence, endorsed with open badges.


The most popular feature of our open online courses among teachers are weekly live events, broadcasted through our Youtube channel, in which experts come and debate on the course topic, the participants themselves have a voice, come and exchange best practices, or facilitators solve doubts live. These live connected events are seen as a way to humanise online training and are also disseminated through all the social networks we are present at. They consist of Twitter chats, digital round tables, facilitation events, webathons, Facebook events, flipped podcasting and so forth, all with the aim of fostering professional communities of connected educators.


Learn more at #AprendeINTEF.





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Wednesday, 24 May 2017

INTEF MOOC at the eMOOCs Conference 2017

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Last Tuesday 23 May 2017, I was invited to speak at the Fifth European MOOCs Stakeholders Summit, hosted by UC3M, to whom I sincerely thank for the opportunity to share what The National Institute of Educational Technologies and Teacher Training (INTEF) have been doing regarding Massive Open Online Teacher Training in Spain for the last 4 years.

I took part in a session about National Policies on MOOCs, together with stakeholders from France, Germany and the Netherlands.

The session was moderated by Darco Jansen and for an hour we could present, deliver, share, debate and discuss on the potential of MOOCs and how the various Ministries are tackling their regulation.

This session addressed the potential of MOOCs to respond to the challenges relating to changing societal needs in a global and digital economy, and to the modernization of Higher Education. On a European level, although differences were observed between the countries, it seems that strong European involvement in MOOCs is widespread. However, the strongest involvement is seen in those regions with supportive policies and structures. Institutional policies at national and regional level seem to be a determinant factor in the uptake of MOOCs. Prominent addressed questions were, amongst others: why should governments (not) care about MOOCs, what are the reasons for governments to stimulate MOOCs, what are the potential benefits to society from a MOOC-based strategy, and so forth.

My presentation was about how MOOCs are being managed at the Ministry of Education, and the evolution of the INTEF Massive Open Online Training Catalogue for the last 4 years.

Here you are the support slideshow that I used at the panel, the talk transcript, and the recording of the whole morning session:




Talk Transcript

Slide 2

Although in Spain there is no specific educational policy regarding Massive Open Online Teacher Training, it is back in 2012 when The National Institute of Educational Technologies and Teacher Training in Spain identify three lines of work to structure a Strategic Framework for Professional Teacher Development, fully aligned at that time with European Union policies on Education and Training that have been implemented in the "EU cooperation in education and training (ET 2020)" program and in the proposals announced in the "Rethinking Education“ strategy.

The three lines of work were:

First. Focusing both initial teacher training and continuous professional development towards a new competency model of the teaching profession in the 21st century,

Second. Exploring new training roadmaps that facilitate professional collaboration,

Third. Establishing a common framework that allows the accreditation of professional competences for the teaching profession and the recognition of activities that show contrastable evidence of effective professional development with itineraries that encourage educational leadership.


It is under the second line of work within that Strategic Framework for Professional Teacher Development, that open online teacher training is first regarded as a way to train teachers on competencies and skills, to open up training so as to foster personalized learning, learning by doing, autonomous training, and training which seeks for shared knowledge and educational practice exchanges, which survive beyond the actual training periods.

Slide 3

Our massive open online courses are a training roadmap that focus on content dissemination and include an activity plan that opens to collaboration. They are not based on topic delivery, but promote online learning communities, autonomous learning, and social connections, and where the role of the facilitators, mentors and the whole dynamization team is essential.

The Massive Open Online Courses that INTEF run have a connectivist approach, the interactions and connections at social networks play a key role and rather than tutors, we have facilitators and energyzers who guide and accompany participants all along the learning experience.

The mail goal that our catalogue of massive open online courses pursue is that participants learn by doing and produce digital artifacts which showcase their learning progress, that help them improve their digital competences and that they can set up portfolios and learning diaries full of learning evidences which endorse the whole experience.

From only offering a pilot catalogue of 3 MOOC in 2014, we have evolved into offering a series of Nano Open Online Learning Experiences (NOOC), whose estimated effort is 180 minutes and that are oriented to achieving a single goal, to developing or improving a single digital competence, whose learning evidence is a single digital artifact.

Besides we are now offering Self- Paced Online Open Courses (SPOOC) to foster learning anywhere, anytime, at participants’ own rhythm, and that catalogue completes the whole circle of the Open Teacher Training that we are so far running at the Ministry of Education in Spain.

The concept underlying the whole offer is The Common Digital Competence Framework For Teachers, whose latest version was published in January 2017, so all our online training initiatives are based on that framework, divided into 5 Areas, 21 sub-competencies and six competence levels.

From the beginning, in 2014, up to this very day, over 77.000 teachers and professionals in the field of education have signed up and taken part in our MOOC, NOOC and SPOOC, all developed at a customized Open Edx learning management system, which we have enriched with the design of X-blocks that cover the needs for the social open online teacher training that INTEF support. For instance, we have technically designed a portfolio aggregator, so that the learning evidences produced by participants are visible and spread, we have made the learning system bilingual (Spanish – English) and we have come up with a badge X-block connected to our own Open Badge Backpack.

Slide 4

The Open Badge Backpack that INTEF is continuously developing is fully compatible with our Open Online learning managements systems, and it is a safe, open standard badge backpack, also manageable with other backpacks which support open standards.

The badges that INTEF issue are serious badges, which acknowledge achieved goals and professional competencies. Participants can share them in social networks, organise them in collections, show them in their INTEF Open Online Training Profiles, export them to their portfolios and to any other backpack that they might be using.

Besides, the backpack has recently incorporated a design tool so that you can create and edit your badges before issuing them if you are one of our badge issuers.

This backpack is born with the aim of becoming a professional portfolio of digital micro credentials that favor a rethought education, which does not train teachers based on the hours they spend on their own professional training, but on the competencies and skills they acquire and improve when continuously developing professionally.


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Monday, 22 May 2017

DigComp and EntreComp Stakeholders Event - 12 May 2017

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Due to the key role The National Institute for Educational Technologies and Teacher Training (INTEF) has played in early adopting the European Digital Compentence Framework and adapting it to the teaching profession, last 12 May 2017, INTEF was invited to take part in the DigComp and EntreComp Stakeholders Event, a conference hosted by DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion of the EU Commission, in Brussels.



I had the honour to attend, on behalf of INTEF, the official presentation of the new European Digital Competence Framework 2.1., by JRC - Seville, share the Spanish initiatives in the stakeholders exhibition, and be part of a session of panelists where I shared the timeline of achievements INTEF has accomplished regarding Teachers' Digital Competence from 2012 up to 2017.

See below the illustrated timeline as well as a summary of the talk:

Summary of the talk

2012

The "Common Digital Competence Framework For Teachers" Project was born in 2012 in Spain, and from the very beginning, it was closely aligned with the European Digital Competence Framework. It was born under the Plan for Digital Culture in Schools, which the Ministry of Education launched in that year too, whose set of projects are the result of the shared reflection process that the Ministry opened with the active participation of the Autonomous Communities, external experts and Heads of various Units within the Ministry itself, who constituted a Working Group on Teachers’ Digital Competences. The Working Group then established a range of objectives regarding the future Framework. The Framework should be a tool to:  
  • Allow teachers to know, help and assess the digital competence of students.  
  • To provide a common reference with descriptors of digital competence for teachers and trainers.  
  • To help to be more demanding regarding the digital competence of teachers (University does not currently give sufficient training to future teachers in digital competence and, moreover, it is not required either for the practice of teaching in Public Administration)
  • To allow everyone to have a list of minimum teaching competences.  
  • To help teachers have the necessary digital competence for using digital resources in their teaching profession.  
  • To encourage a methodological change in both the use of technological means and educational methods in general.
The Working Group members stated then that the framework should bear in mind both Initial Teacher Training and Continuous Professional Development and three lines of action were established at the time:   Line 1: Proposal for a common reference framework.   Line 2: Plan for evaluation and accreditation of Teachers and Schools.   Line 3: Parallel promotion of teacher training in digital competence. After studying various other Frameworks worldwide, it was agreed by The Working Group to focus on the 5 areas of digital competence in the DIGCOMP project implemented by the former IPTS, now known as JRC Seville. The Working Group considered the European Digital Competence was the best reference for an adaptation into the teaching profession and so started working together to publish a first draft of The Spanish Digital Competence Framework For Teachers, which was eventually published in 2013.

2013 - 2014

That first draft included a proposal of descriptors and overall levels, and it was revised and refined by a wide range of stakeholders and experts in the field of Education, who were discussing and debating for a shared document until in June 2014 a new update of the draft was published.

2015

The project came to a halt for different reasons, but the draft framework was translated into English. Meanwhile, the DigComp continued being developed, of course, refined and improved by JRC, who has always been a great support for us.

2016 - 2017

In May 2016 the Working Group is reactivated and starts meeting once a term, which also speeds up the re-elaboration of the Framework and the creation of a tool for the certification of the digital competence of teachers. All along 2016, the Working Group discuss on a shared Framework that now includes 6 levels of competence and specific descriptors for each of the 21 competencies within each of the 5 areas of the digital teaching competence. For the descriptors writing and the levels coherence, as well as for updating the names of some of the areas within the Spanish Framework, we have followed the methodology of version 2 of the European DigComp, published by JRC Seville, also following the European line of action.

The 2017 version of the Spanish Common Digital Competence Framework for Teachers is published in January, taking version 2 of DigComp as its basis and fully adapted to the teaching profession. It is available both in English and in Spanish. Simultaneously, we have been developing the Digital Competence Portfolio for Teachers and its Self Assessment Tool, which have just been piloted by over 1000 teachers nationwide in March, with very good results.

The Portfolio and the Framework have been refined in April, after a Conference with Stakeholders and Teachers that we hosted in Madrid, and whose aim was to draw final conclusions in order to further advance in these tools as the means to certify the digital competence of teachers. At the moment, we are still developing, from a technical point of view, the Portfolio, thanks to the feedback we have gathered from the one-month pilot stage that we carried out in March, with a Dossier, linked to the Self-Assessment Tool, as well as a proposal of a training roadmap for teachers to improve their level of digital competence.

The concept behind the portfolio is that the results of the self assessment and the evidences uploaded to each dossier generate a digital passport which shows the level of digital competence of each teacher. The teacher will then be able to request that the Educational Authorities regularly certify that level. The teachers will be provided with a training roadmap, personalised according to their answers to the SAT and which will allow them to pass levels.

The portfolio is also connected to our Open Badge Backpaback, where their professional digital badges are stored, shared and acknowledged. We do hope that we are able to make the portfolio public and supported with official regulation very soon.
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