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Improve Secondary Teachers Education in the National Teachers’ Colleges of Kabale and Mubende

NTC Mubende & Kabale
> Uganda

NTC Lecturers Ready to Design Online Courses

 NTC Lecturers Ready to Design Online Courses

John Dewey, one of the influential minds behind education progressive reforms once said, “If we teach today’s students as we taught them yesterday, we rob them of tomorrow.” This statement is relevant in Uganda’s context today as we have experienced a paradigm shift within the education sector which has caused learning models to change and required us to adopt new teaching methods that suit the current times.  

Cognizant of this, on Monday 16th August 2021, the TTE project and Ministry of Education and Sports launched a weeklong EduHack on E-learning Instructional Design for the lecturers of the National Teachers’ Colleges (NTCs) in Uganda. This EduHack which was aimed at teaching NTC lecturers how to design online courses was the 3rd out of a series of co-creation workshops that was first launched in May 2021. In the 1st and 2nd EduHacks, lectures experienced e-learning and the creation of online educational content. In the 3rd EduHack, emphasis was put on E-learning Instructional Design. Here, teacher trainers were expected to part with the knowledge and skills of designing an online course and roll out these skills to the rest of the NTCs’ staff.   

E-learning Instructional design is the process by which one plans out the structure and flow of their online courses, using different digital tools, strategies and creativity, ensuring that all steps and parts are included. In the 3rd EduHack, NTC lecturers went through a training process where they practiced online course design using ‘Moodle', a popular Learning Management System. As part of the training, NTC lecturers explored the ‘ADDIE model’, a 5-step guide to successful e-learning course design and the ‘Bloom's Digital Taxonomy’ to inform them on how to use technology and digital tools to facilitate student learning experiences and outcomes.   

While exploring the ADDIE model, the training was focused on the Analysis and Design phases of the instructional design model. In the Analysis phase, emphasis was put on teaching NTC lecturers how to identify the course required and the overall teaching goal. Focus was also put on identifying one’s students, their needs and their motivations to study a course. The Analysis phase was key in triggering empathy from the teachers to enable them to see the world through the eyes of their learners. Teacher trainers were then introduced to what is known as an ‘Empathy Map’, a tool that is used to gain a deeper understanding of learners. As practice, they created empathy maps for their students as a starting point to their e-learning course design.   

Regarding the Design phase of the ADDIE model, lecturers learnt how to set overall course objectives, plan and structure content, and write storyboards for online content. The teacher trainers then ventured into content creation using an Action Map for the course they had identified during the analysis phase. With the Action Map, they experimented creating realistic practice activities out of their set learning objectives.
They also set the overall goals for their respective courses, the main objectives and created activities that allow learners to achieve the learning outcomes in an online environment. Finally, the teacher trainers went through a session on E-assessment where they gained insight on the different techniques and types of e-assessment to use while evaluating the overall learning objectives of their students. All this was done following the different cognitive levels of Bloom’s digital taxonomy.   

By the end of the weeklong workshop, a total of 63 Moodle accounts had been created by the teacher trainers who can now design their own online educational material tailored to the needs of the students. In addition, 49 action maps and 53 empathy maps were created by the teacher trainers as part of their online course design process. A Community of Practice session was also held on 26th August 2021 where the TTE Sandbox help desk team presented to NTC lecturers their rollout plans of the knowledge and skills acquired from the 3rd EduHack. 

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