FH3 Ascilite Conference Toowoomba, QLD

We have pulled together all the data that was entered into the google docs at FH3 held at ASCILITE in Toowoomba, Queensland on the 4th December. The task for all the participants in the room was to make an elevator pitch to scale and sustain innovation at your institution, and respond to some of the challenges that will face that.

The first section of the hack is what we call Burnt.  The aim of this activity is expose, share and find common ground amongst many of the hopes, dreams, fears and experiences we have all had in terms of change that in part represent a filter (and sometimes a barrier) to identifying or challenging new ideas or solutions.  Each participant was asked  to write down their victories, disasters/failures and hopes and dreams around the implementation of an educational technology project.   You can access the BURNT results right here...

All of this is free and open to use, so go ahead. It would be great to know where you have used and what happened.

Hack 1 - IN THE ROOM

You have a successful but limited scale project. This project has worked in its context. You have evaluated it and the student and staff feedback is excellent. The challenge you have been presented with by your institutional management is, how do we make this part of the institutional strategy for success?

You are pitching to senior management how you are going to make this sustainable or scalable. It is great to have principles for scaling and sustaining technological and pedagogical change. The critical question is how do you make it happen? How do you convert ambition into action? This aim of this hack is to identify the things you need to ask from your institution to make change last and become embedded in your organisation.

Your task is to write five headlines for your VC to either scale or sustain your initiative.

Table 1 - Collaborative assessment

  1. Leaders of the future
  2. Work-ready collaborators
  3. Cross campus digital capability
  4. Connect and learn
  5. More people = bigger results, the sum of collaborative assessment

Table 2 - Games-based learning

  1. Gamification engages students therefore retains students.
  2. Investment in gamification will contribute to student and teaching success.
  3. This will make the institution a leader in technology driven pedagogy.
  4. This will raise the profile of the institution and meet its strategic objectives.
  5. Employability outcomes will be achieved, students will be world ready.
  6. It’s a game-changer!

Table 3 - Audio/video feedback

  1. Audio-video feedback revolutionises learning
  2. The graduates that have experienced the pilot are highly sought after by employers.
  3. Staff time was reduced significantly.
  4. Students loved the new feedback system.
  5. Rankings rise -- new feedback system takes the credit.
  6. One small improvement that creates massive impact on institutions across the country.

Table 4 - Making

  1. 3D printing top priority for employable skills
  2. 20% cost saving in replacing existing tech with 3D printers
  3. Access to 3D printing for high schools driving a rise in 1st preference applicants
  4. Extend community engagement by opening maker space to local not-for-profits
  5. Cross-disciplinary 3D printing projects exciting academic staff to try new things

Table 5 - Online learning

  1. Cost savings, more revenue, greater reach: why not?
  2. “Times they are a changin”
  3. Be unique. Be different. Go online.
  4. We shot the Sheriff: No more lectures.
  5. One size doesn’t fit all, or does it?


Table 7 - Social media learning

  1. Student help students develop professional skills
  2. low cost, accessible flexible resources that make an impact
  3. Technology enables students to develop EQ

Table 7 - Practice based learning

  1. Networks: managing industry network
  2. Support: Units, resources that are able to provide ongoing support PD.
  3. Distributing leadership across faculty
  4. Adaptability: prepared to be flexible and adapt
  5. Relationships: Management with industry, stakeholders, academic staff and students

Table 8 - Collaborative Learning

  1. DVC/provost - Authentic assessment is future proofing
  2. Policy - our rigid policies hamper our ability to recruit students, moving to collaborative assessment increases authenticity and opens the possibility of commercialising assessment activities through university innovation programs such as incubators and accelerators, increase opportunities for industry partnerships
  3. BDM - Our refreshed assessment become the brand/point of difference, could become our signature pedagogy, drives employability of graduates and therefore increases enrolments
  4. POssibility - Rebundle and sell assessment to other providers via Pearson

Table 9 - Making

  1. Potential source of income for the University through student-generated solutions for real world problems
  2. Multidisciplinary approaches for meaningful and powerful societal change
  3. Improved graduate employability through development of modern skills for future jobs that don’t yet exist
  4. Commercial partnership opportunities across a range of disciplines
  5. Scaffolding of projects by students, for students, which helps address entry pathway issues, communication and cultural issues, resulting in improved student retention and graduate satisfaction

Table 10 - Audio/Video Feedback

  1. Students and faculty embrace enriched feedback experience across university
  2. Size matters! Evidence based transformation (VLE)
  3. Student driven experiential improvements
  4. World class leading innovation
  5. SCALE by institutional faculty involvement and implementation on uniform platform to increase student satisfaction and engagement


Your pitch is successful.  The room loved it.   The VC smiled and offered you exactly what you had asked for.    

What do you need to put in place strategically to deliver your scaled or sustained change? Coming from the BURNT activity, you will get a single real-life cultural/human context of success or failure (we know there are many) to respond to.   What structures (these could be policies, initiatives, support for example) do you need to put in place to implement your initiative and make sure it works?

(Please indicate the BURNT ‘issue’ you are responding to)

Table 1 - Collaborative Assessment

BURNT: Problem: We don’t have the infrastructure or strategic capability.

Solution 1: Create a bottom-up and middle-down approach so that we are addressing the initiative at multiple levels to gain the maximum traction.

Solution 2: Evaluate staff skills and identify champions who will move the initiative forward.(use their practice to model to others)

Solution 3: Breaking the larger initiative into smaller chunks or processes that are easier for staff to adopt. (Create resources to support staff understanding of pedagogy underpinning collaboration)

Table 2 - Games based learning

BURNT: Problem: we struggle to engage with or satisfy our stakeholders

1: community / industry engagement / alumni

2: support for the pedagogical changes and technology support

3: communicate the benefits, showing the real life applications

Table 3-  Audio/video feedback

BURNT: Problem: we don’t have the required resources or staffing


Response 1: We will collaborate with other institutions and use their well-funded systems.

Response 2: We will expend our small budget on quality well-designed professional development for all our staff so they can do so much more.

Response 3:  We already have commercial sponsorship/partnership for the necessary upgrade to our wifi

Table 4 - Making

So what do we need?

  1. New staff member - project manager + runs PD + social media campaign
  2. Location - permanent spot in a place that is visible and that people walk past often. With a gallery so people can see what’s happening
  3. All graduation awards medallions are 3D printed with the new 3D printer in the University Maker Space.

Table 5 - Online Learning

  1. Five years of freedom to experiment, be able to change/ adapt our ways of teaching, and make mistakes in integrating this system.
  2. A unified vision from the VC’s office that is consistent with the online learning
  3. Redefining new ways of teaching and student learning outcomes by auditing current pedagogical approach.


Table 6 - Social Media Learning

  1. identify institutional change champion for different platforms
  2. Students moderators as overseers of task,(select media and marketing staff to help)
  3. communication strategy
  4. program director to oversee

Table 7 - Practice Based Learning

  1. BYOD: will solve some infrastructure issues.
  2. Temporary visitor status into LMS etc. Internship level access.
  3. Industry will provide the infrastructure
  4. Successful trials, that can provide evidence.
  5. Partnership: Industry other institutions, and alumni networks.

Table 8 - Collaborative Assessment

BURNT: Cannot successfully integrate the technology with the way we want to teach and the way students want to learn

Our three structures are

  1. New assessment policy
  2. Staff development for academics, especially sessional staff or peer assistants with collaborative classroom facilitation
  3. Resourcing for the LD/Development teams

Table 9 - Making

  1. Clear partnerships with commercial partnerships; supported by the University at the highest level
  2. Policies to establish ‘making’ within the curriculum, including for authentic assessment

Table 10 - Audio/Video Feedback

  1. Money for stuff (replacement/workload)
  2. Student involvement
  3. A cattle prod
  4. Colleagues and champions
  5. Third part/international says its good
  6. Industry developments/people/implementation/funding