Resources and Articles

Resources and articles that you may find useful to support your education ICT projects.

One-to-One Device Guidebook (Published: 5 February 2014)

The following is an extract from the Leadership chapter from my One-to-One Device Guidebook.

The success of a one-to-one device strategy is dependent on the strategic support that a school’s senior management team gives to it and upon the leadership skills of that management team. This guidebook explores the broader elements that need to be addressed by a school’s leadership team; such as curriculum design, the management of technological and educational change, financing a one-to-one device strategy and training associated with a one-to-one device program. This section examines some of the specific strands that a school’s leadership team needs to take control of if it is to ensure a successful outcome for its one-to-one device strategy. These are listed as follows:

    • the educational, financial and political backdrop for a one-to-one device strategy;
    • developing a vision for information learning technology and the one-to-one device strategy at the school;
    • project managing a one-to-one device program; and
    • the process for procuring a one-to-one device solution.

Social Learning (Published: 10 November 2013)

Schools, colleges and universities are increasingly recognising the limitations of traditional networks and communication channels to enable improvements across a wide range of institutional parameters such as performance management, productivity, student support, teaching, learning, attainment and progression. The use of social learning platforms promises to transform how educational institutions deliver services to students and how teachers and managers work collaboratively to design, develop, deliver and manage educational services to the communities that they serve. As ever, the use of emerging networked services such as social learning platforms alone will not deliver enhanced educational services. Improvements in the management of educational services and improvements in teaching, learning and attainment will only come about with the support of change management programmes that are supported by educational leaders and practitioners.

Let's Create, Share and Play (Published: 29 October 2013)

An increasing number of schools are incorporating computer games design and production into their education portfolios. The skills that students acquire whilst designing and producing computer games are many and varied; skills that can support the study of other mainstream subjects at the school and skills that can be used as a basis for making vocational and further education choices when graduating from school. The work of Youth Digital, Gamestar Mechanic and the ChicagoQuest Schools provide compelling cases for using computer gaming within an education setting.

Cloud Services (Published: 12 September 2013)

Cloud computing has transformed the delivery of web based services across the education sector and it has the potential to improve the quality of education services for all students. It is set to fundamentally change how every school, college and university will manage their technology and their ICT service delivery models. Improvements in cloud based services are enabling educational establishments to offer a richer and broader range of web based services to their students. The cloud based platforms that enable students to access day-to-day applications will change the business model for many education institutions and will throw into question how they finance and manage their ICT services and more importantly how they perceive the role, function, and purpose of their ICT paradigms. Overall trends show that schools, colleges and universities are gradually moving away from managing and hosting their own stand-alone services. To that end, we will see a growing momentum towards cloud based services that will enable an overall improvement in the way students access web based services.

Technological Dependence (Published: 11 August 2013)

The advent of ubiquitous computing means that schools can no longer construct support mechanisms for learners without thinking about the array of networked devices and services that could be used to support them. Their new reality is a web of relations between teachers, students, parents and the technological artefacts that form the basis for new connections and opportunities. A growing number of schools who have embarked on a one-to-one device programme have learnt that their teachers and students are becoming increasingly dependent on their networked devices to support their day to day activities; and they have reached a point where they can no longer afford to have a disconnect between teachers, students and the learning technologies around them for technology is no longer something from which schools can separate themselves from, stand back and then decide what to do with it.

The Future of the eBook (Published: 19 July 2013)

The advent of the first illustrated textbook by John Amos Comenius in the mid 17th century introduced concepts and ideas about pedagogy that still resonate today. He proposed that students could acquire ideas from objects rather than words, he firmly believed that education should be a pleasure rather than a task and the manner of teaching and learning should reflect this and that education should be universal. Three centuries later, Instructional Designers and the content development teams behind many of the successful eBook titles still support and aspire to the principles set out by Comenius. The objects that Comenius refers to have morphed into interactive content, videos, 3D models, digital media, games, questions and quizzes. The use of these new media objects provides teachers and students with engaging, inspiring and enjoyable content; content that can be easily updated to reflect the changing needs and demands of the curriculum being studied. As access to more affordable networked devices spreads across the education sector we will also see a parallel growth in content distribution channels, and the eBook will form one of these channels. The use of eBooks is not yet universal; but their use will become commonplace within a ubiquitous computing environment.

Calm Technology in the Classroom (Published: 12 July 2013)

Schools rightly place a considerable amount of emphasis on end user devices and upon the services that can be accessed over these networked devices; but all too often they tend to unwittingly neglect many of the unforeseen consequences of introducing networked devices and services into the classroom and into the wider school setting. The introduction of pervasive technology in schools impacts irrecoverably on every child, teacher, school administrator and parent; and as we gaze upon the dawn of the ubiquitous computing world we have yet to imagine how it will mould and shape the educational lives of billions across the globe.

Services to support your one to one device programme (Published: 4 July 2013)

The following services are available to support your one to one device programme: financial modeling, device choice, technical design, training and support to develop the wider strategy around your one to one device programme.

Services to support your eLearning strategy (Published: 4 July 2013)

The rapid expansion of networked devices and services within the education sector is placing increasing pressure on schools, colleges and universities to provide engaging, stimuating and content rich eLearning materials for their students and teachers. I provide various services around instructional design, the development of eLearning materials, training to support end users and the management of Learning Management Systems or Learning Platforms.

Ambient Schools (Published: 18 June 2013)

A school with a ubiquitous computing model will address the educational needs and requirements of its students in a fundamentally different manner from a school which has a lower ratio of computing devices to pupils. The pervasiveness of new technology will mean that educational institutions will come to be shaped by ubiquitous computing. As schools begin to organise and make sense of recent technological developments they will be better placed to utilise these technological advances to take forward organisational change and to further improve the educational services that they offer to their communities.

Mirrored Classrooms (Published: 7 June 2013)

The manner by which schools are becoming subjectified through an increasing presence of networked devices and services in their classrooms is a concern to many school leaders. While many view the integration of technology into the contemporary school setting as a positive move, there is a degree of uncertainty and hence a level of anxiety about the role that technology will come to play in the future. The simulacra within an education setting does not simulate or duplicate pre-existing practices, norms and rituals of the classroom; rather it presents something new, something altogether alien to school administrators and teachers, something that redefines our perception of schooling.

Lessons from the Past (Published: 9 May 2013)

Schools have tended to welcome the introduction of new technology with open arms. At first these resources were expensive and their use was limited to a narrow subject field. Over time the cost of networked devices and services became more affordable and schools also allocated a greater proportion of their budgets towards the procurement, use, maintenance and refresh of these new technologies. Within a short period of time the age of ubiquitous computing has arrived and many schools now provide access to networked devices and services that are second to none. Perhaps it is rather harsh to state that many schools introduced new technologies into their campuses with little thought about how these new technologies will come to shape their very existence. For technology is having a profound effect on the role of teachers, the relationship between teacher and student, what students are taught, who will teach them, how students are taught, how they are examined; and most importantly, the introduction of the Internet and networked devices and services in schools, is prompting us to reconsider the role and function of schools at the dawn of the 21st century.

Technology and the Self (Published: 29 April 2013)

Technology has become an indissoluble part of the modern education setting and it continues to enrich the lives of countless students and teachers across the globe. Technology is no longer marginalised and it has become a vital component in the delivery of education services for schools, large and small. As we continue to connect with the technology around us we are witnessing a growing reciprocal relationship between ourselves and the expanding number of networked devices and services that we all use and take for granted in our everyday lives. If technology is playing such a vital role in shaping who we are, what does it mean for schools when it comes to adopting and using technology?

Creative Skillset (Published: 15 April 2013)

If you are seeking to extend the opportunities that your students have to access the creative industries such as TV, film, radio, interactive media, animation, computer games, facilities, photo imaging, publishing, advertising and fashion and textiles, there is no better source of information and support than Creative Skillset, the UK's Creative Industries' Sector Skills Council.

A New Digital Identity for Schools (Published: 6 April 2013)

A worker's skill set has always determined his or her ability to access the labour market. In many ways, the skill set or the vocation of that particular individual defined or gave identity to that person. In today's world, students who graduate from mainstream education will need to demonstrate their ability to operate and function in new and emerging industries; many of which require higher order technical competencies. These students will define themselves or give identity to themselves through their education and by the many jobs that they will hold during the course of their lives. Their identities will evolve as they become active participants within their respective industries. We are also discovering that mainstream definitions of digital literacy no longer suffice, they have all too often become outdated by the rapid and accelerating pace of technological change. This has been highlighted in recent reports which state that there are hundreds of thousands of jobs in the high-tech sector that remain unfilled.

What are the driving forces underpinning the adoption of technologies in our schools? (Published: 7 March 2013)

Social, cultural and economic processes are increasingly underpinning the adoption of new technologies in our schools. As schools become active agents in a hyper connected world we discover that they are profoundly affected by their cultural setting, by their place and position of authority within their respective networks, by peer pressure, by political institutions, the marketing strategies of global technology giants and by the fads and fashions of the day.

Why should we learn to code? (Published: 26 Feb 2013)

Advocacy groups such as are acutely aware for the need to develop a graduate workforce that is equipped with the skillset that enables them to become active participants in today's knowledge economy. The continuing rise and pervasiveness of the knowledge economy and its demand for a workforce that is educated and trained in the use and application of new technologies has meant that the education sector will have to develop and deliver new curriculum models in order to equip students to enter the knowledge economy. The education systems of the global networked economy need to enable students to have the opportunity to become economically engaged, to be qualified participants in the knowledge economy and to be actively involved in the wider society.

Financing ICT in schools (Published: 18 Feb 2013)

A school's desire to provide a ubiquitous computing model has always been tempered by traditional financial practices across the education sector. When put alongside tightening school budgets, many school leaders have been unable to consider the outright purchase of essential ICT equipment. However, gradual relaxations in the rules governing school finances have enabled school leaders to consider alternative methods for procuring ICT equipment. This article examines the case for operating leases.

3D Education Content (Published: 5 Feb 2013)

Teachers and students at Shelfield Community Academy describe their thoughts about using 3D content to support teaching and learning.

Digital Textbooks - Globe Education Shakespeare (Published: 4 Feb 2013)

Apple's iBook Store is an ideal distribution channel for education publishers. This article examines and reviews the set of iBooks that have been produced by Hodder Education. The publishers have released titles on the iBooks Store for Macbeth and Romeo and Juiet; with A Midsummer Night's Dream and Much Ado About Nothing due for release later in 2013.

Digital Textbooks (Published: 4 Feb 2013)

The rise of the tablet PC and the availability of content distribution channels such as the iBooks Store and the Amazon Store heralds a period were the digital textbook will become commonplace in schools and homes across the globe. This article examines and reviews the set of english literature applications that have been produced by Mind Connex Learning Ltd. The series covers the following titles: Romeo and Juiet, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Julius Caesar and Hamlet.

The future of the learning platform is social (Published: 25 Jan 2013)

Virtual Learning Environments, Managed Learning Environments, Learning Management Systems and Learning Platforms originate from a desire by schools, colleges and universities to structure and organise the administration and distribution of teaching and learning resources. The history of the learning platform began with a period were educators praised its introduction to support teaching and learning and it is currently in a period were many educators are regrettably praying for its demise and questioning its necessity within an education setting. However, the advent of social media and enterprise social networks means that we may have to re-evaluate our perceptions of the learning platform; for the future of the learning platform is social.

Future Identities (Published: 22 Jan 2013)

The UK government's Department for Business, Innovation and Skills commissioned a study which set out to explore how technology is shaping our online identities and what it means for policy decisions. This article highlights the key education findings of the report.

Hyper Connected Teachers (Published: 18 Jan 2013)

As teachers take advantage of networked services they are increasingly becoming active agents in a hyper connected world that will forever change how they teach. There are many factors that influence and determine the success of teachers but increasingly that success will be determined by their ability to utilise networked services; especially in a world were learners, communities and economies reside in a hyper-connected world.

BETT 2013 (Published: 3 Jan 2013)

The BETT Show is always a good place to measure the technology barometer within the education sector. BETT 2013 is an ideal opportunity to see the new array of education technologies and a good place to discuss future technology trends.

Paradigm Shifts (Published: 1 Jan 2013)

Technology is playing an ever increasing role in shaping education services. It influences how schools deliver education services to the communities that they serve, how teachers design and distribute learning materials to their students, how teachers disseminate information, how students access learning materials, how assessment is conducted and how schools and parents communicate with one another. This article showcases how technology is driving innovation and change within the education sector and it examines the issues that technology is forcing everyone in the education sector to address.

3D Digital Content (Published: 13 Dec 2012)

Digital media technologies such as 3D leverage and magnify our ability to capture the essence of what we are teaching and learning. The ability of new media to enable us to view the world in new dimensions, to encourage and motivate creativity, imagination and collaboration, to foster new ways of learning that are not constrained by traditional boundaries, paradigms, cultures, customs and norms will mean that it will become ever present in our lives. The use and application of new digital media in schools will be seen as an essential part in every teacher’s tool kit. Here we examine the use of 3D stereographic immersive environments within the education sector.

Making Connections (Published: 27 Nov 2012)

As schools take advantage of networked services they are increasingly becoming active agents in a hyper connected world that will forever change how they manage, offer and develop education services for the communities that they serve. The success of schools will increasingly be determined by their place and their position of authority within their respective networks. This article examines how connected schools, connected devices, connected services and connected students are altering our perception of the education landscape.

Windows RT, Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro (Published: 11 Nov 2012)

Microsoft's new operating system marks the launch of a new touch centred user interface. The advent of the new operating system also marks the start of a period where we will see many new form factors such as touchscreen PCs and tablet devices.

The iPad mini (Published: 24 Oct 2012)

The iPad mini could mark the start of an accelerated up take of tablet devices in schools. The device has lost non of the functionality and productivity of the larger iPad and its price point makes it affordable for many schools. The iPad mini will certainly engage and excite schools.

Amazon's Whispercast for Kindle (Published: 18 Oct 2012)

Kindle Whispercast is Amazon's mobile device management software that enables schools to manage their Kindle devices. It improves the ability for schools to manage and distribute content across all their Kindles.

The Rise of the Networked School (Published: 17 Oct 2012)

The role of technology to support the new education networks. The rise of the supernode or the digitally connected and networked school has been enabled by advances in information technology and by structural changes across the education sector. The rise of the networked school signals a move to more complex inter school relationships and affiliations.

Technologies of the Self (Published: 10 Oct 2012)

The broader definition of technology is often overlooked by educationalists; namely the branch of knowledge that deals with the creation and use of technical means or artifacts and their relationship with the wider society, education systems, governments and the environment. If school leaders considered the broader definition of technology, its overall position and value to support teaching and learning would improve and schools would have a deeper understanding of how technology influences learning.

The Digital Codex (Published: 3 Oct 2012)

The codex or the bound book marked a technological breakthrough in the printed world. Its significance cannot be underestimated. The codex bought with it the expansion of religious and scientific teaching across the globe. The advent of the printing press many centuries later accelerated the distribution of the written word. The format of the codex or the bound book was so natural and intuitive to use that its format has remained unchanged since its inception nearly two millennia ago. The third millennium begins with it another profound and technological breakthrough; namely the advent of the digital e-book.

Education Apps and Mobile Device Management Software for the iPad (Published: 28 Sept 2012)

As schools start to deploy larger numbers of iPads the pressure to manage them effectively rises. The solutions from mobile device management software suppliers enable schools to manage their iPads as networked devices. Effective mobile device management is a pre-requisite before devices are introduced to classrooms. I have also listed leading apps for the iPad.

Next Generation Education Technology Companies (Published: 25 Sept 2012)

As education technology becomes more ubiquitous across the education sector we will see the dominant role of the education technology company move from a technology hardware supplier to one of a change agent. The primary role of the change agent in the education sector is to enable educational establishments to transform teaching and learning with the aid of education technologies and services that are designed to support teachers and learners.

Structural Changes in Education (Published: 18 Sept 2012)

The education sector represents a large and significant market for technology companies across the globe. The potential revenue from the education sector means that the market is increasingly becoming the prime catalyst for technological innovation within the classroom. This is evidenced by the increasing pace of technological change within the education sector...Technology will always play a major determining role in driving the development of education systems. The relationship that learners, schools and education systems have with technology should not be underestimated.

Technology Acceptance in Education (Published: 11 Sept 2012)

What criteria do schools use when adopting new technology? This article examines the pyschology of accepting new technologies within the education sector.

A Cyberpunk Future for Schools? (Published: 4 Sept 2012)

Accelerating technological change over shorter periods of time has placed increasing pressure on educational establishments to manage their ICT resources and networked resources. In a world that is consumed by accelerating change what are the implications for education systems? Will the speed of technological change outstrip current developments in schools, colleges and universities?

The Supernodes (Published: 25 August 2012 )

The emergence of the supernode or the digitally advantaged school marks an important development within the education ICT landscape. This article provides an insight into the characteristics associated with the growing number of digitally advantaged schools or the new supernodes within the education sector.

The Role of the ICT Partner (Published: 8 August 2012)

What is the role of companies that provide ICT services to the education sector? Do schools expect no more than hardware, software and networked services from them or do educational establishments expect ICT companies to become active participants in designing, shaping and delivering education services fit for the 21st century?

Digital Advantage (Published: 22 July 2012)

What are the characteristics of a digitally advantaged school?

Mind the Gap (Published: 12 July 2012)

Why do some schools have an abundance of ICT equipment and services and others do not? The digital divide question is more than just about 'the haves' and 'the have nots'. It is about management practices, norms and cultures, pedagogy and day-to-day practices in the classroom which exacerbate the digital divide within the education sector. How will digitally advanced schools extend their advantage and how can the others catch up?

Google Apps and Microsoft Office 365 (Published: 5 July 2012)

Here is a short description and comparison of Google Apps and Microsoft's Office 365 for the education sector.

Technology and Behavioural Change in Education (Published: 1 July 2012)

The relationship between technology and behavioural change is a field that is often ignored by educationalists. Despite its neglect, this area of study offers an exciting opportunity to explain the impact of technology on teaching and learning. Furthermore, it enables educationalists to design and take advantage of digital intervention strategies to derive positive behavioural change in teachers and students.

Technology and Educational Change (Published: 24 June 2012)

Technological determinism supports a commonly held view that technology has a profound and direct causal effect on human behaviour and it ultimately shapes how individuals learn and acquire knowledge. Whilst this viewpoint can explain simple cause and effect relationships between technology and learning it fails to address how tried and tested technologies can have a positive impact on teaching and learning in one educational establishment and have little or no impact on teaching and learning in another.

Technology and the Changing Role of the Teacher (Published: 10 June 2012)

Technology has profoundly altered the basic tenets of education. It changes the way teachers and students interact with one another. If used wisely, technology will augment the role of the teacher. Technology supports a teacher's desire to enable his or her learners to have greater self-determination and a more active and participatory role within the education setting.

The Paradox of Choice (Published: 7 June 2012)

The American psychologist Barry Schwartz coined the phrase 'The Paradox of Choice'. He stated that we can reduce our overall level of anxiety if we reduce or limit the level of choice we face. But in the summer of 2012 we are witnessing an explosion of hardware and software platform choices, which in the words of Schwartz, is resulting in anxious times for countless schools across the globe.

Digital Intervention (Published: 6 June 2012)

There has never been a better time to explore and examine how the education sector can use digital intervention to engage learners, cultivate creativity, promote imagination and to improve overall attainment levels.

In the Cloud (Published: 9 May 2012)

Cloud computing has transformed the delivery of web based services across the education sector and it has the potential to improve the quality of education services for all students. If the education sector is able to embrace the power of cloud computing we will come closer to realising ubiquitous learning through the web.

Democratising Education (Published: 12 March 2012)

The efficacy of technology to democratise, customise, adapt and transform education will be one of the primary conditions for achieving the kinds of educational outcomes needed to build a thriving digital knowledge economy. If these pre-conditions are not in place there is a danger that the education orthodoxies of today will threaten and undermine the opportunities available to graduates as they attempt to become active participants in the modern digital economy.

Technology and Education Design (Published: 3 March 2012)

The dominance of prevailing pedagogy and education design principles continue to influence the choice and use of legacy internet technologies and services in the classroom. Financial models, management practices and classroom paradigms inadvertently exclude the introduction of Post PC devices and services that could support and extend teaching and learning in schools.

Institutional and Technological Change (Published: 25 Feb 2012)

The variation in the pace of change between education technology and school pedagogy can bring about a degree of tension and uncertainty for school leadership teams and teachers when managing the introduction of new technologies and services.

Techtonic Shifts (Published: 18 Feb 2012)

The norms of the legacy internet have only just been learnt and it is of no surprise to hear that it will take time before the norms of the post PC era become prevalent and widely adopted within the education sector.

The Digital Codex (Published: 27 Jan 2012)

The advent of the e-book has enabled traditional text to be supplemented and enhanced with rich digital media. The e-book is no longer a digital copy of the codex but rather a medium that enables readers to interact with the written word in a manner never envisaged before. The reader is no longer the passive consumer of text; rather the reader has become an active participant and contributor to the modern digital codex.

Locative Media (Published: 8 Jan 2012)

I am working on a new school build in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire that is set admist a rich and varied historical landscape. Students will be using locative media and augmented reality via their GPS enabled smartphones to interact with their local history in a manner never envisioned before. If you are interested in learning more or if you would like to participate in the project then I would love to hear from you.

3D and Augmented Reality (Published: 1 Jan 2012)

The number of companies that provide stereoscopic 3D and augmented reality services in the UK remains small, but their potential impact on the education sector is enormous.

The Legacy Internet (Published: 21 Dec 2011)

The legacy internet describes the development, presentation, use and application of popular internet based technologies and services that we have grown familiar with over the last decade or more. Right now we are seeing the legacy internet being superseded by more visual, semantic and intuitive technologoies and services.

Cloud Computing 

Over the last few years we have all used cloud computing in one shape or another. It may have been when you accessed your online email account, when using services from your favourite social networking site or when storing your files online. Cloud computing will have a profound affect on the way education providers strategically manage their ICT infrastructure, ICT assets and the ICT services that they provide to their end users; namely teachers, students and the wider community. The paper by John Powell at Leicester's Business School is a good introductory paper to the subject.

Cloud Services for the Education Sector

The model for education computing is changing. Educational establishments are being offered viable, affordable and sustainable ICT solutions that do away with the constraints that hang over traditional ICT infrastructures and ICT service models. The advent of services such as Google Chrome OS, Google Chromebooks; Google docs, Microsoft Office 365, desktop virtualisation and other cloud based solutions such as Apple's iCloud are gradually moving more and more educational establishments to reconsider how they finance and manage their strategic ICT resources.

Google Docs

Google Docs is a free, web-based word processor, spreadsheet, presentations, form creation tool, and data storage service offered by Google. It allows users to create and edit documents online while collaborating in real-time with other users. Click here to view a summary of Google's offering to the education sector. If you are an individual who wants to try out Google Docs for the first time, then click here to learn more.

Microsoft Office 365

Office 365 includes the Microsoft Office suite of desktop applications and hosted versions of Microsoft's Server products which includes Exchange Server, SharePoint Server, and Lync Server which are all delivered and accessed over the internet. Click here to view a summary of services that are provided through Microsoft Office 365. If you want to discuss purchasing education licences for the use of Office 365, then click here for a list of education re-sellers in the UK.

Learning cultures on the move. Where are we heading?

Agnes Kukulska-Hulme (Institute of Educational Technology, Open University) explores the move towards a more learner centered education and discusses the implications for the adoption of mobile learning technologies and learning design. The paper explores the pervasiveness of mobile technologies within the education sector.

Digital Learning Studio

Digital Learning Studio's m-learning site provides a broad range of resources and information relating to mobile learning.

Essa Academy: Empowering Students with the iPod touch

The Essa Academy in Bolton made the investment to support the roll out of iPod touches to every learner in the academy. Changes in teaching and learning strategies and the investment in handheld learning has realised improved outcomes across the academy.

Ubiquitous Computing

Ever wondered were the term ubiquitous computing came from? Well, Mark Weiser coined the phrase in a 1991 paper entitled 'The Computer for the 21st Century'. The phrase describes how personal computing will one day melt into our everyday lives. In recent years the widespread use of this term has taken hold within schools, colleges and universities to describe anytime, anywhere access to online educational resources and services. Weiser would no doubt agree that we have some distance to travel before we realise ubiquitous computing within the education setting. For a full transcript of Weiser's paper click here. A further article on ubiquitous computing can be found on the Apple Classrooms Of Tomorrow (ACOT) website.

Self Organised Learning Environments (SOLEs)

Prof. Sugata Mitra (Newcastle University) has developed a unique perspective on how technology can be used to support teaching and learning. The SOLE projects support the notion that learning is a process that individuals go through and not a process that is done to you. The SOLE projects gave children self-supervised access to shared digital resources and saw results that could revolutinise how we think about teaching. Schools that support Mitra's pedagogy enable pupils to work in groups, follow up on class activities or to undertake self directed projects that interest them. You may find the TED talk given by Mitra a useful starting point as well.

Digital Media and Pedagogical Change

Catherine McLoughlin (Australian Catholic University) and Mark Lee (Charles Sturt University) examine the impact of digital media and social networking tools on pedagogies. New and emerging learning theories are clearly explained. The article supports the need to recognise the potential of new digital and social media to enable the transformation of pedagogy, the design of learning tasks, the promotion of learner autonomy and creativity in our schools.

The Khan Academy

Salman Khan has established a unique not for profit education website which enables learners to watch short 10 minute online videos on mathematics and a small number of other subjects. The site has attracted a large amount of positive feedback from across the world. The material that has been created may not suit everyone's learning styles, but it does demonstrate the opportunity that schools have in producing their own bespoke content and at little cost.

Digital Portfolios: Fact or Fashion?

The use of digital portfolios as a learning and assessment tool is continuing to grow in popularity. Even though the article was written a few years ago, it is still very relevant as it examines the use of digital portfolios and the factors that teachers need to bear in mind when using them.

Participatory Culture and Media Education

Henry Jenkins' paper entitled 'Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century' describes how many students are actively involved in participatory cultures when they create and share their own media content. The paper describes how schools can ensure that all students benefit from learning in ways that allow them to participate fully within their schools, communities and in economic life. There are many questions that are asked and addressed. How do schools guarantee that the rich opportunities afforded by the expanding media landscape are available to all? What can schools do to give students a head start and allow them the chance to develop and grow as effective participants within the education landscape?

Learning Platforms and Change Management

Schools often tell me that they have problems persuading staff and students to use their Learning Platforms or Virtual Learning Environments on a regular basis. Getting change management right to support the roll out of a new learning platform is probably the most important thing a school can do before, during and after the roll out of a learning platform. Gilly Salmon's book entitled 'E-tivities: The Key to Active Online Learning' may help you devise an effective change management strategy. She describes a five stage process in engaging staff and students in the use of learning platforms through instructional activities.

Supporting students to build effective online profiles

In today's competitive world it is vital for students to control and define their online profile. Students need to be in a position to determine what others see about them. They need to leverage their online profile to showcase their skills and talents to potential colleges, universities and employers. If you provide information, advice and guidance to students and you feel that this subject matter could help your students, then please be free to contact me.

Schools, ICT and the knowledge economy (Published: 9 Oct 2011)

Access to affordable, reliable and sustainable ICT solutions alongside improved ICT management practices is enabling the education sector to think more broadly and strategically about the role of ICT. In particular, schools are developing curriculum models that are aiding, supporting and fostering students to enter new and emerging job markets within the knowledge economy and the digital industries in particular.

Curriclum Agility (Published: 14 Nov 2011)

The growing maturity of ICT services within the education sector is enabling schools to think more broadly when designing, developing and implementing new curriculum models and programmes of study. The continuing rise and pervasiveness of the knowledge economy and its demand for a workforce that is educated and trained in the use and application of new technologies has meant that the education sector has had to develop and deliver new curriculum models and courses in order to equip students to enter the knowledge ecomomy.

People Do Compicated Things Together (Published: 28 Nov 2011)

Traditionally social and cutlural shifts were the main drivers for explaining the movement of education paradigms. Today, developments in technology are playing an ever more important role in explaining these paradigms shifts. Schools who actively promote and practice new digital literacies will be those that ultimately define and shape current and future education paradigms.

Apple Regional Training Centres

If your school is using Apple technology or about to make a substantial investment in Apple technology you may be interested to learn more about Apple's Regional Training Centre scheme. If you are interested in sharing your vision for education technology eligible schools will need to be in a position to offer a training venue for other schools.

Microsoft IT Academy Programme

The Microsoft IT Academy Programme offers a comprehensive range of training and resources needed to deliver high quality training to students, staff and the wider community.

Digital Learning Studio

Digital Learning Studio's m-learning site provides a broad range of resources and information relating to mobile learning.

3D Content and Technologies

If you are considering purchasing 3D education materials for your school, college or university there are a number of questions that you must address before making that purchase. Is the content informative, is the content engaging, do you have the systems in place to support the introduction, the use of and the development of that content once it is in place and finally is it affordable? If you are interested in learning more about 3D environments within the education sector, there are a small number of UK based companies that can help. The two listed here are Reach-Out Interactives and Gaia Technologies,

E-Learning Foundation

The e-Learning Foundation provides practical support and advice to schools who wish to further develop home school ICT initiatives. The e-Learning Foundation is a national UK charity that helps schools work with their families to provide computers and, where needed, access to the internet, for their pupils. The foundation gives advice to schools to make sure their programmes are fair, affordable and take advantage of available grants and tax relief. They help schools by providing grants to keep the costs down for those who want to contribute but have limited means. And finally the e-Learning Foundation helps take the administration burden away from schools by collecting the regular donations from parents on their behalf.

Education ICT Suppliers

If you are a school in the UK and are interested in purchasing education ICT services, the suppliers listed on the Department for Education's ICT Services Framework will be able to help. Click here for a list of companies listed on the framework. If the value of your ICT procurement programme is relatively small you may want to take advantage of alternative frameworks such as the Eastern Shires Purchasing Organisation (ESPO) which is proving to be popular amongst free schools.

Hardware as a service for schools (Published: 20 Oct 2011)

Hardware as a Service can enable your school to afford a complete end-to-end ICT solution, which can includeanything necessary to bring your school's IT network into the 21st century. This can include servers, desktops, notebooks, infrastructure components, licensing, and much more, all in a monthly, recurring revenue based solution, with no up-front costs.

IT Fads and Fashions (Published: 21 Nov 2011)

IT fashions are perceived as anything new, innovative and at the forefront of practice. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that the fashion phenomenon in IT matters to a school's outcomes. So what happens to schools that pursue the latest IT fashions?

ICT Procurement Planning (Published: 24 Oct 2011)

ICT has irreversibly shifted mainstream educational paradigms. The growing importance of ICT within educational establishments and its ability to impact on every facet of schooling means that schools, colleges and universities need to raise and broaden the profile of ICT procurement from a peripheral activity to a mainstream one. Were education bodies have done this successfully they have seen tangible benefits for learners and their establishments.

Education Technology Review 2011 (Published: 31 Dec 2011)

The education ICT sector saw many innovative developments in new technologies and digital media in 2011. The sector continues to make significant progress and its impact on the education sector remains undiminished.

Education ICT Partnerships (Published: 29 Oct 2011)

For schools looking to expand into new curriclum areas or to extend and enhance existing areas, a strong partner can be key to strengthening the school. A healthy partnership will bring about a growth in education ICT capital. Education ICT capital are technologies, pedagogy, rituals, habits and norms that all come about because of the application of education technologies in schools.

3D and Augmented Reality (Published: 16 Dec 2011)

The number of companies that provide stereoscopic 3D and augmented reality services in the UK remains small, but their potential impact on the education sector is enormous.

Locative Media

I am working on a new school build in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire that is set admist a rich and varied historical landscape. Students will be using locative media and augmented reality via their GPS enabled smartphones to interact with their local history in a manner never envisioned before. If you are interested in learning more or if you would like to participate in the project then I would love to hear from you.

The Rise of Visual Media in Education

The use of 3D and Augmented Reality within the education sector will grow exponentially over the next few years. Click here if your company or school would like to take advantage of either technology.