ALT-C 2009 Infrastructure Innovation

3 short paper(s)
237 Dream on: Slow progress in developing digital media infrastructures
Susannah Diamond, Andrew Middleton

Where are we?

We know we want to be learnered centric, but the physical environment determines soething else. The technology around us has changes significant.y, it is now affordable, and simple to use. We don’t need production teams, central provision. Awareness of this new age. But where is the ‘glue’ or infroastructure that ties the pedagogy with the technology?

‘We believe the institutional infrastructure should allow staff and st to easily…u

User-generated digital media learning landscape. A user is anyone who ‘needs to say something’. Screencasts, podcasts, audio notes.

Motivation through student publishing. Real user generated channels.

Reality, example: getting media onto uni streaming server, via X, Y, and Z, getting the run-around being directed to different people.

What infrastructure for digital media production?

  • student support
  • ict literacy
  • educational development
  • access to kit
  • robust networks
  • storage
  • institutional drivers
  • academic support
  • production team
  • drop-in help
  • co-ordination

Do all these different people have the same perception of digital media? All alligned to the same plan?

Small national study – 10 UK universities, what they to to enable digital media.


  • lack of¬† cohesion and strategic investment
  • legacy systems
  • piecemeal availability of equipment
  • ad hoc support
  • fragmentation and gatekeepers
  • user-generated content is considered exceptional, not main-stream
  • lack of infrastructural co-ordination

spectrum of institutional responsibility and individual responsibility??

we have

  • the ideas
  • the technology
  • a growing awareness amongst staff/students.
  • we are developing critial digital fluency

but we don’t have the glue to transform to mainstream


126 Socialising learners through on-line induction: Reflections on the transition to higher education
Richard Walker, Wayne Britcliffe

  • engaging a new generation of students with preferences for interactive & exploratory learning
  • famliarity with popular social technologiies
    • facilitating students to acquire good scholarship/information literacy skills
    • discipline and course level best practices
  • techniques to cope with information overload
  • socialising students into institutional discipline and peer group communities


  • provide incoming students with information about the uni/dept
  • provide academic support materials
  • facilitate interation with peers and between new students and the department
  • support thhe online registration pprocess


  • induction site set up over summer
  • runs september to end of autumn term
  • publicised through welcome pack
  • accessible only to registered students
  • vle access optional


  • Online tasks prior to arrival on campus
  • reading lists, timetables, catch-up material (catchup on a level materials form maths, chemistry, biology)
  • links to society (dept) page and student union
  • video clips


  • log-in peaked mid-september
  • limited access once term began
  • catch-up materials most popular
  • facebook¬† preferred for social chat over the vle blog
  • questions focused on general information rather than subject/dept specific


  • Improve student voice within the module
  • students weren’t as aware of support services as they could have been – needed to be made clearer
  • more info on tutorials and practicals wanted
  • get 2nd/3rd yr students to post helpful info for 1st yrs

234 Appropriate and Practical Technologies for Students, Teachers, Administrators and Researchers
Sarah Sherman, Caroline Bell

Lovely photo of bloomsbury ( ahh nostalgia from having studied/worked there)


  • 90% comfortable using desktop tools
  • only 6/7% comfortable with online editing tools
  • 1 person hadn’t heard of e-mail

Created some Bloomsbury Personas, a generic student, generic teacher, generic administrator.

Stick-figure picture. APT model.

google docs bridging a gap

STAIRS – getting people to take incremental steps

using google docs for collaborative editing with immediate access of data to others then-and-there in class, eeepcs used to ‘network’ an otherwise computer-less room/lab.

plans: applying APT techniques in africa

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