Encouraging Lecturers to Engage with New Technologies in Learning and Teaching in a Vocational University

The Role of Recognition and Reward

Institutional Management in Higher Education

Bournemouth University faces the same challenges as many other universities. These arise from the sector-wide agendas, such as widening participation, regional partnerships and international collaboration, in addition to increasing research activity and managing with reduced funding. A key priority within Bournemouth’s Learning and Teaching Strategy is to use learning technologies to address these challenges. Several incentives are being used to encourage lecturers to adopt online learning. These have as their common focus the need to value teaching activity on an equal footing with research. The strategies used include funding for learning and teaching projects, a Learning and Teaching Fellowship Scheme, the creation of a Centre for Academic Practice to focus on pedagogic research, payment for membership of the Institute for Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, and a staff development programme for Programme Leaders. These initiatives are possible because the University has take a strategic approach to using government funds for learning and teaching and human resources development (HRD) policies. However, putting in place such incentives is only worthwhile if they work, and research suggests that successful and widespread implementation of online learning depends on a number of factors (Johnston and McCormack, 1996; Steel and Hudson, 2001; Somekh, 1998; Spotts, 1999). This article presents findings from research in progress by the author which is investigating factors affecting the adoption of online learning by lecturers at Bournemouth and their motivation to change their teaching methods. The methodology used is action research and the article ends by briefly illustrating some of the issues faced by the researcher conducting research in her own organisation...

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