Designing for the Digital Divide

Today saw the release of the 2017 Australian Digital Inclusion Index, which can be downloaded from the Telstra Sales Portal Digital Inclusion website. The report had some positive, although expected, conclusions in that digital inclusion is increasing right across the board, which is the good news. What caught my eye however were the specific mentions of the sociodemographic groups which are the most digitally excluded across the country, specifically:

“…people in low income households, people aged 65+, people with a disability, people who did not complete secondary school, Indigenous Australians, and people not in paid employment.”

Read more

Changes in the Australian Higher Ed LMS landscape – a wave, or just a ripple?

DSC_7098 This week, the University of Sydney announced that it was migrating from Blackboard Learn to Canvas, joining RMIT, UC and the University of Adelaide who have also announced similar moves in the last twelve months. No doubt this is sending one or two quivers through the camps of the ‘Big Three’ LMS platforms which until recently made up the entirety of the incumbent LMS landscape in Australian Higher Ed – Blackboard Learn (21 Universities), Moodle (15) and Brightspace by D2L (3)*.

But are we about to see a wave of change in the LMS landscape across Australia, or will it be more like a ripple?

Read more

MOOCs won’t disrupt Higher Education, employers will

Last week I wrote a post on ‘students as customers’ in the context of a more corporatised, commoditised Higher Education market. It was interesting then to see another post today discussing the emerging trend of employers dropping requirements for degrees as part of their recruitment criteria, instead selecting candidates

based on merit, rather than credentials, often by assessing candidates with psychometric testing or other performance based tests

This caught my attention for two* reasons. Firstly, it returned my thoughts to the student as a customer, and the likely increase in their willingness to leave the Higher Education system (or not engage in it at all) if it is not meeting their expectations – in this case employability. Secondly, it made me reflect on the role of MOOCs, not as a replacement for a degree, but as a potential perceived indicator of merit in a landscape where a degree is no longer a necessity.

Read more