BETT 2015: The ‘˜Digital Maturity Index’™

Speaker profile: Gary Spracklen, Director of Digital Learning and Innovation will look at how to create a truly great learning environment

Here at the Isle of Portland Aldridge Community Academy we’ve been looking at how we make learning better. Challenging ourselves to understand what makes a difference and what will give our learners the vital edge in their future lives. We always knew technology was essential but there are other things we knew we needed to look at.

Working with James Penny from our technology partner European Electronique we’ve come up with a new way of thinking about all the things that we think need considering when looking at creating a truly great learning environment. We’ve grouped these under the title of an Educational Digital Maturity Index – EDMI. This defines six areas where we think it is essential to think hard and ask questions about what you are doing. During our session at BETT we’ll explore the index in more detail and share what we think the index really means in terms of education impact. In preparation for the session we’ve shared the six areas below with some of the questions and ideas we’ll explore.

High quality leaders are essential but how do leaders use technology? How do they encourage others to use technology? Is the use of technology fully embedded into their vision for the organisation? How does their vision for technology support enhanced outcomes?

High quality teachers are essential – Are teachers confident about using technology? Do they have technology embedded into their pedagogical practice? Do teachers share their great practices between each other? Do teachers use technology to teach and work across areas of knowledge?

Are your students ready? We often think of students as the master of technology but often they need as much support as everyone else. Are all students confident in using technology? Are all students able to access and use technology? Does the use of technology support students to perform better?

Is your curriculum digitally ready? Without a review of the curriculum technology can often not be fully exploited. Have leaders and teachers reviewed the curriculum to ensure that technology is being used effectively? Have curriculum activities been specifically designed to make effective use of what technology can offer? Will the curriculum take advantage of the opportunities for out of school learning? CPD is embedded here as a pre-requisite of delivering great learning.

Is your technology Infrastructure ready? Has the infrastructure been designed to support the multiple personal devices that might be deployed? Has the connectivity been checked to see if it is sufficient? Has the active network infrastructure been configured to support the data it will need to process? Has the wireless infrastructure been designed to support the device strategy?

How will you use classroom spaces, buildings and your entire campus? Traditional classrooms and ICT suites support certain types of technology. What happens when you suddenly introduce mobile devices? Are traditional learning spaces suitable for mobile personal learning? Do classrooms have the spaces and facilities to make mobile learning successful?

Gary will be speaking in the Schools Learn Live: Secondary theatre on Friday 23 January at 4.45pm. His session will be titled “21st Century school – Learning without boundaries”.