Predictions for DET 2010-joining the dots

The  2010 IT predictions  are in, with many hot favourites including: Cloud computing, OER, Mobile devices and virtualisation (including gesture based interfaces).  And of course the Gartner and Horizon reports are always  grounded  and set the script for  the IT agendas. So what’s on NSW DET’s ‘technology radar? A couple of themes are prominent-  in sum its all about joining the dots on many disparate initiatives including the DER, CCP , TeLs, schools websites  and SALM projects.

1. Systemised/enterprise  social networking opportunities. While teachers and students have had access to social networking tools in their own practises, DET is rolling out tools such as blogs, eBacpack and wikis, and other collaborative tools which are integrated into the technical, and policy frameworks of the Dept. Some of these tools such as BlogEd when going into full release before end of Term 1, will offer unique pedagogical opportunities for the use of such tools. Of course TAFE and many schools have accessed these tools for many years now- but it’s the integration of these into backend ID systems, notifications, email, filtering services, and policy framework – which should give them the edge (hopefully not encumbering them).

2. Accessible computing. The NSW DER goes into its second year rolling out the next gen (S2) of netbooks to Year 9 in Term 2. Accessibility through single login, network upgrades  and via wireless networks are  getting some way towards  a school version of ‘ubiquitous’ computing.                                                                 

3. Shared services.  This has been a frustration & driver for most of the centrally deployed IT solutions over the past few years. Integration of administration systems (SALM)  including access management,  common ID recognition ,  group aggregators (for building groups from core data), common services such as search, notifications eg  email/RSS.  Content management will also feature via Sharepoint solutions, the associated learning tools media library and the VLE Equella  CMS. TaLe continues to thrive and is set for a new release; including saved links, creating resource lists & resource sharing for release shortly.

4. Personalisation– approach with most DET applications . User tagging & sharing, skin customisation, shared personal resources, options for allowing moderation and general administration by teachers, widget selection,  etc. Ability for user feedback directly incorporated into the tools, to better inform  managers.  TaLe achieved this some years ago providing users of their search engine the opportunity to provide the TaLe team with information regarding the success of the tool- great example of keeping these tools directly informed by the users.

5. Integrated platforms for learning. The use of Moodle is becoming a foundation IT platform in both schools and TAFE. While TAFE have widely adopted Moodle  as their LMS of choice schools are quickly catching up, systemising its management on a local basis. Equella and sharepoint  also figure in this mix as important components of any VLE architecture.

6.User Generated Content (UGC). At  last DET seems to be formally grappling with its interpretation of UGC and accepting the need for accommodating its use, storage and discovery within their systems.

7. Policy conformance through application systems. Enforcement of privacy, duty of care and copyright are all a high priority for these systems. BlogEd for instance has invested heavily to ensure users and owners of blogs have moderation options, report concern, access levels, role privileges & copyright management built in. 

8. Usage metrics– standby for the proliferation of dashboards  attached to every application. Learning tools, storage solutions and portals will all have metrics and feedback, notification services  linked into their interface. Hopefully its at the portal end that users will have access to ‘parent dashboard’ systems; to incorporate any aspects of the ‘child’ systems information to manage their own tools.


About thand

I'm a currently working at NSW Departrment of Education & Training, Connected Classrooms Program, Sydney.
This entry was posted in access, blogging, education, innovation, platform, policy, predictions, Repositories, Social networking, Wikis. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Predictions for DET 2010-joining the dots

  1. Stuart says:

    Talk about slow…I’ve been trying to implement Blogs, Wikis and other tools on the internet and have used up more of my valuable time than I hate to admit to to get most of them unblocked. The amount of detail on why you want it unblocked, and what hoops you have to jump through is astounding. Several years of hounding and we finally had the trust to be able to use You Tube, wow, such trust is head numbing…not!

    Gee, I’m not getting younger and still chasing my tail trying to implement Web 2.0 and by the time I get to implement Web 2.0, Web 3.0 will be in and it starts all over again….ahhhhhhhhh

  2. Tony Searl says:

    Thank you for a comprehensive update.

    I’ve said before DET’s “left hand right hand disconnect” has lead to extreme frustrations for end users. The portal (bubble) will never be open so operating within it will always be an unauthentic online experience. Hopefully difference minimisation will be sufficient but I’m yet to be convinced it will be enough. Scalable compromises may be close and with their early adoption in schools, may well prove to be sufficient.

    For DER to be ubiquitous, seamless and successful issues of alignment and interface will need to improve, considerably. It looks like this may now be starting, especially with recent shifts on UGC and user feedback mechanisms. Cross platform log ons, student safety and flexibility are system requistes but closed systems/lock downs will still be unsustainable in the longer term.

  3. Roger Pryor says:

    Hi Tim

    Thanks for the overview. I’ve been very interested to see the repetition of a common theme within much of the work: that of an almost ‘serendipitous synergy’ created in the various forms of asynchronous comms environments eg newsgroups –> ;listervs;–> messaging and microblogging…Twitter..Yammer It seems that this enables the affiliation need to be met and creates an energy of its own.
    Most importantly, it broadens the base of lateral connectivity between us and others and adds another layer to a laminate of learning which sustains us all.

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