Implementing Moodle for FLT       An Experience of Collaborative WorkForo Nacional Sobre la Enseñanza de Lenguas Extranjer...
Project LeadersDr. Jose Luis Ramirez Romero  Professor of educational technology in the Department of Foreign  Languages a...
Context of the Project•   The project was originally conceived by the two authors.•   Goal was to reach across an internat...
Selection of Environment• The project was initiated with faculty from the  Department of Foreign Languages at the Universi...
The Importance of Technologyin Pre-Service Education• Research and reports have long stressed the need for preparing  pres...
Diffusion of Innovation Theory• Positive, innovative change is difficult to achieve in any organization.• There are severa...
Stages of the ProjectProject was designed to follow four stages:                           Diagnostic &                   ...
Diagnostic and presentation• Project officially began in  April, 2005• We made a short  presentation in Hermosillo  to dis...
Diagnostic and presentationDetermined that technology infrastructure wasadequate to support the project and thatnetwork ac...
Training (first phase)• After the initial visit in April, participants completed a three-  week pre-workshop at the beginn...
Implementation (first phase)• A small number of volunteers who participated in the week-  long workshop then spent June th...
Evaluation• 2006 spring semester - questionnaire administered to  students on Moodle.• Large majority of students reported...
Training (second phase)To keep the momentum going, we conducted asecond week-long workshop at the end of the May of2006.Th...
Implementation (second phase)• During this time we moved our Moodle system from the NAU-hosted  Apache server to a commerc...
Implementation (second phase)• By the 2006 spring semester: 7 professors and > 200 students.• Project began to receive att...
Implementation (second phase)• In the third year (2007-2008), project became  completely self-sustained.• Fully supported ...
Evaluation• At the close of the initial project, the UniSon  Department of Foreign Languages offered 23  courses in Moodle...
The Project Today• Project continues five years later.• Thriving• ??? Courses with
RIPPLES Model• RIPPLES identifies factors that        •   Resources  facilitate the integration of  technology.           ...
Analysis of the Experience• Surry (2002) has proposed a model for overcoming the barriers to  integrating instructional te...
Resources• Refers mainly to fiscal resources. Literature includes surprisingly little  about the importance of money in th...
Infrastructure• The infrastructure that was available to us was excellent, and was  probably one of the two critical facto...
People• People play an essential role in the  process of integrating a new innovation.• It is the people involved who faci...
Policies• Refers to having organizational policies and procedures to adapt the new  model, including incentives and reward...
Learning• The new technology must enhance the educational goals of the  institution.• Surry (2002) lists three ways that t...
Evaluation• Underscores the need for continual assessment of the technology.• Four areas of evaluation that should be cons...
Support• Needs to be a support system in place for faculty, staff, and students who  are using the technology.• Person who...
In Review
Lessons Learned• Biggest lesson is the need to either be involved for a long time,  sometimes much longer than originally ...
Conclusion• Changes in education are slow and complex: full of discontinuity,  dilemmas and uncertainty (Fullan, 2001).• C...
Implementing Moodle for FLT       An Experience of Collaborative WorkForo Nacional Sobre la Enseñanza de Lenguas Extranjer...
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Moodle Project in Mexico

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Moodle Project in Mexico

  1. 1. Implementing Moodle for FLT An Experience of Collaborative WorkForo Nacional Sobre la Enseñanza de Lenguas Extranjeras Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico 2011 Dr. Jose Luis Ramirez Romero Dr. Stephen D. Sorden
  2. 2. Project LeadersDr. Jose Luis Ramirez Romero Professor of educational technology in the Department of Foreign Languages at the University of SonoraDr. Stephen D. Sorden Academic Chair for Distance Education at Mohave Community College in Arizona. At the time of the project – Manager of Learning and Professional Development at Northern Arizona University.
  3. 3. Context of the Project• The project was originally conceived by the two authors.• Goal was to reach across an international border to work together to create new opportunities for faculty and students.• Also to strengthen academic friendships in the border region between neighboring states and countries.• Inspired by other international projects and organizations where participants from various countries combined their talents to introduce technical innovation and change.
  4. 4. Selection of Environment• The project was initiated with faculty from the Department of Foreign Languages at the University of Sonora.• The department had fourteen full-time professors and fifty-six part-time professors and offers courses in various foreign languages and a degree in teaching English (200 students)
  5. 5. The Importance of Technologyin Pre-Service Education• Research and reports have long stressed the need for preparing preservice teachers to use technology in the classroom.• Good time to introduce technology to teachers in Sonora as the state was investing in programs to insure that every school was wired and that there would be at least one small lab in each school.• The EFL program at UniSon placed EFL teachers in schools all over Sonora.
  6. 6. Diffusion of Innovation Theory• Positive, innovative change is difficult to achieve in any organization.• There are several conditions that can impede or prevent change and several others that can promote it.• To help us understand and overcome these challenges, we referred to some of the literature on organizational change and diffusion of innovation.• Several theories that deal with diffusion of innovations and technological change.• Principle theorists are Rogers, Fullan, and Ely.
  7. 7. Stages of the ProjectProject was designed to follow four stages: Diagnostic & Presentation Evaluation Training Implementation
  8. 8. Diagnostic and presentation• Project officially began in April, 2005• We made a short presentation in Hermosillo to discuss the project with interested faculty and administrators.• Introduced Moodle, explained what it was, and how it would help them teach online.
  9. 9. Diagnostic and presentationDetermined that technology infrastructure wasadequate to support the project and thatnetwork access was reliable.
  10. 10. Training (first phase)• After the initial visit in April, participants completed a three- week pre-workshop at the beginning of summer.• Week-long workshop on how to build courses in Moodle was held in Hermosillo at the end of May, 2005.
  11. 11. Implementation (first phase)• A small number of volunteers who participated in the week- long workshop then spent June through August preparing online courses for the fall.• During the fall semester of 2005, three professors offered their first courses to approximately 100 students.• Some glitches, but was generally a successful launch.• In spring 2006, number of faculty remained same but students doubled.
  12. 12. Evaluation• 2006 spring semester - questionnaire administered to students on Moodle.• Large majority of students reported favorable impression of their online learning learning.• Several more professors expressed interest in joining the project. DLE Survey 05-06
  13. 13. Training (second phase)To keep the momentum going, we conducted asecond week-long workshop at the end of the May of2006.This workshop re-taught the basics ofusing Moodle to anew group ofprofessors, as wellas introduced moreinformation on bestpractices for all ofthe participants.
  14. 14. Implementation (second phase)• During this time we moved our Moodle system from the NAU-hosted Apache server to a commercially-hosted Apache on Linux solution.• The new service performed well and we experienced very few technical problems during the second year.• During the first year an on-site professor learned to administer Moodle.• She took over by second year and became skilled at handling administrative duties and providing on-site technical support.• By the second year very little remote support from the United States was required.
  15. 15. Implementation (second phase)• By the 2006 spring semester: 7 professors and > 200 students.• Project began to receive attention from other parts of the university and the department officially embraced it as a teaching tool.• Interest steadily grew during 2006 and 2007 and the project grew stronger: almost 250 students, 9 professors, 20 courses.• During the summer of 2007 we worked to bring up a new Moodle server hosted by the university in Mexico.
  16. 16. Implementation (second phase)• In the third year (2007-2008), project became completely self-sustained.• Fully supported and managed by personnel at UniSon.• Project initiators retired from the project. Original goal was achieved.
  17. 17. Evaluation• At the close of the initial project, the UniSon Department of Foreign Languages offered 23 courses in Moodle.• Due to continued interest of new faculty, the department site administrator started a permanent workshop for them.
  18. 18. The Project Today• Project continues five years later.• Thriving• ??? Courses with
  19. 19. RIPPLES Model• RIPPLES identifies factors that • Resources facilitate the integration of technology. • Infrastructure • People• It details steps that administrators and other change agents can • Policies take to promote the integration of technology in their organizations. • Learning • Evaluation • Support
  20. 20. Analysis of the Experience• Surry (2002) has proposed a model for overcoming the barriers to integrating instructional technology into higher education, which he calls the RIPPLES Model.• This model builds on the work of Rogers, Fullan, and Ely.
  21. 21. Resources• Refers mainly to fiscal resources. Literature includes surprisingly little about the importance of money in the change process.• There was very little money to support the project. Sustained as an experiment and by our dedication to an idea.• In the second year, the project was hosted with an inexpensive commercial host in the United States.• A server was also purchased by the department so that the project could eventually be hosted by the University of Sonora at the end of the second year.
  22. 22. Infrastructure• The infrastructure that was available to us was excellent, and was probably one of the two critical factors in the early success of the project.• Students and faculty at the University of Sonora could access the server in reliably from their offices, labs, and homes.• Fortunately, students and faculty at the University of Sonora had access to the latest computer equipment, modern computer labs, and sufficient bandwidth and reliable networking to make the project a success.• Originally hosted from a small server at Northern Arizona University.
  23. 23. People• People play an essential role in the process of integrating a new innovation.• It is the people involved who facilitate, evaluate, and decide if an innovation will be adopted.• The Concerns Based Adoption Model, or CBAM (Hall & Hord 1987), suggests the stages of concern that people generally go through as they consider and ultimately accept or reject a new technology: 0 Awareness - I am not concerned about it. 1. Informational - I would like to know more about it. 2. Personal - How will using it affect me? 3. Management - I seem to be spending all my time getting materials ready. 4. Consequence - How is my use affecting learners? How can I refine it to have more impact? 5. Collaboration - How can I relate what I am doing to what others are doing? 6. Refocusing - I have some ideas about something that would work even better.
  24. 24. Policies• Refers to having organizational policies and procedures to adapt the new model, including incentives and rewards for using the new technology.• Strong administrative support for the project.• The department’s administrators welcomed us, encouraged the faculty to attend our meetings and workshops, and attended the workshops themselves to show that they were strongly interested in its success.• More importantly, one of the administrators was among the three core professors that nurtured the project through its first year.
  25. 25. Learning• The new technology must enhance the educational goals of the institution.• Surry (2002) lists three ways that technology can enhance the instructional goals of an academic organization: 1. Technology can have pedagogical benefits in the way that it allows teachers and students to interact in new, dynamic ways. 2. Technology can enhance learning goals is by allowing the institution to reach new student populations or to serve current students in new ways. 3. Technology can enhance learning goals is by reducing costs through either larger economies of scale or through lower operating expenses.
  26. 26. Evaluation• Underscores the need for continual assessment of the technology.• Four areas of evaluation that should be considered: 1. the technology in relation to learning goals, 2. The technology itself, 3. the overall integration plan, 4. cost/benefit analysis.• Our evaluations were based on observations, informal discussions with the professors, and end-of-semester surveys of the students.
  27. 27. Support• Needs to be a support system in place for faculty, staff, and students who are using the technology.• Person who had the most technical expertise in the early stages of the product lived in the United States while all of the faculty and staff who would need support lived in Mexico.• We solved this problem through an innovative use of Information Communications Technologies (ICT)• Allowed us to collaborate in a way that eliminated the problems caused by the distance between our two schools.
  28. 28. In Review
  29. 29. Lessons Learned• Biggest lesson is the need to either be involved for a long time, sometimes much longer than originally anticipated.• Have a good exit strategy.• Another lesson is that technical projects which introduce sweeping change CAN be successfully implemented without a lot of money.• It is possible to introduce change from a distance if at least 2-3 committed people on site work with the experts through the Internet.• Administrative support for introducing an innovation is an absolute necessity.
  30. 30. Conclusion• Changes in education are slow and complex: full of discontinuity, dilemmas and uncertainty (Fullan, 2001).• Changes must be designed, implemented and evaluated from a strategic point of view as which takes many factors into account and encourages the participation of all those who are affected.• We hope that our presentation will contribute to a better understanding of the factors involved in the change process.• The ultimate goal is this process is to collaboratively construct learning environments that are richer, participatory, and meaningful.
  31. 31. Implementing Moodle for FLT An Experience of Collaborative WorkForo Nacional Sobre la Enseñanza de Lenguas Extranjeras Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico 2011 Dr. Jose Luis Ramirez Romero Dr. Stephen D. Sorden

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