I am just writing up an abstract for the upcoming Moodleposium conference, here in Canberra in November. I toyed with several different topics (digital badges, using marking guides, etc.) but I decided to follow my own advice and submit a paper on improving situations for casual teachers as it relates to education technology. This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart as I taught as a casual from 2009-2013 at UOW and also Southern Cross Uni. I have had many long discussion with sessional staff colleagues and friends about the assumptions made by lecturers, program convenors, and subject coordinators when it comes to building learning activities and assessments online. While many casual teachers only get paid for the hour they spend in class, they are often expected to build quizzes, administer large courses, mark assignments online, engage with students via email and forum posts, or in my case (and that of the Smart Casual) on social media sites like Twitter. And if the casual teacher involved doesn’t have the necessary skills, it is often confusing and difficult for them to find help or professional development when it comes to teaching online.
I’d like to give a paper discussing these issues with those present from my combined perspective as an educational designer and former casual teacher at university, and come up with some suggestions on how to move forward and what we can do to help our sessional colleagues when building and delivering courses online or blended.
I’d love to hear what you think and invite any suggestions on key problems when using ed tech or teaching online as a casual teacher, or solutions you’ve seen (or would like to see)! All suggestions will be referenced in the final paper as your contribution, of course. Send me a Tweet @katiedigc or leave a comment below. Thanks, friends.