All universities are trying to embrace the opportunities digital technologies provide while also seizing on the idea of smaller units of learning (micro-credentials) and digital badges.

Griffith Online has packaged these three aspects together and incorporated them into three new online learning units to help advance the capabilities of Griffith University staff around the provision of teaching online and in understanding the opportunities provided by digital technologies. Griffith Online calls this series of units, Teach Online.

Teach Online is a series of one-week units that focus on core drivers of a great student learning experience; conversation, assessment and alignment. These units are hosted on Griffith’s MOOC partner’s site (FutureLearn), but are only available to its staff. Each unit helps a staff member to quickly understand how to become more effective in the affordances of digital technologies and what it means to be an effective teacher online, plus when complete staff can add a digital badge of completion to their portfolio.

Professor Nick Barter.

Professor Nick Barter

“We went down this path of small units to develop our staff because we need to be able to reach nearly 2000 staff effectively and efficiently and there is no way we are going to get them all to attend face to face training,” said Professor Nick Barter, Academic Director, Griffith Online.

“We also need staff to start thinking in smaller units of learning and to embrace the conceptual frames of digital certificates and what better way than to use the medium as the message. This is what we have done with our Teach Online units.”

The method is proving effective. So far more than 175 staff have engaged with the units and alongside the core messages of ensuring great digital communication, clear assessment and course alignment, the units also explore active learning and universal design.

All Griffith staff, including sessional staff not currently working under a contract, are able to join these units for free. Participants have access to the units indefinitely and can enrol after units have started. This has allowed Griffith to optimise the reach of the units and helps ensure everyone gets on the digital change agenda at Griffith.

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Griffith University is one of Australia’s leading online education providers with over 100 online degrees and over 11,000 online students studying through our Digital Campus.