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CPD for digital and information literacies

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Joe Nicholls
12 January 2013

I'm sure like many others participating in this MOOC, I've seen far too many institutional technology initiatives come and go and result in frustration at the missed opportunities because the business change process and staff development wasn't in place either in a timely or appropriate manner.

Professional Services staff play a key mediating role between available services and the requirements of academic staff and students. Their practices are pivotal for promoting organisational change. A coherent CPD programme for Professional Service staff that seeks to develop digital and information literacies in the context of existing practice is of fundamental importance for enabling institution-wide business change.

My assertion is that educational institutions require organisational structures and processes dedicated to the creation and delivery of flexible and agile CPD tailored for Professional Services staff roles. In an ideal world, this would be initiated and driven by a central staff development service through a coordinated programme linked to staff appraisal. At Cardiff University this remains a vision and something to aspire to. Most current staff development opportunities are through voluntary attendance at occasional presentations and workshops, the majority of which are commissioned from external third parties which do little to address the specific challenges and opportunities within the institution. More often than not, what people experience is something that is pre-packaged and removed from context in which they work.

For staff to be able to develop relevant digital and information literacies it is something that has to be done through meaningful practice. The challenge, in busy organisations where people feel time pressured, overwhelmed and reluctant to change what they do, is to find ways of engaging them so that they recognise value and benefit from participating and working to develop their knowledge and skills.

I'm hoping to use this OLDSMOOC opportunity to explore the potential for designing a curriculum to develop the digital and information literacies of staff in Information Services at Cardiff University.

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Katharine Reedy
6:34pm 12 January 2013 (Edited 6:35pm 12 January 2013)

Hello Joe, Nice to see you on here and I think this is an interesting proposal. I'm planning to return tomorrow when I'll have more time. Speak soon!


Joe Nicholls
7:03am 13 January 2013

Hi Katharine - Thanks for the interest. Would be great if we can pool our ideas and effort. I'm sure this particualr issue is something most educational institutions would be mindful of. It will be interesting to explore to what extent challenges and potential approaches in our respective organisations are similar or different. Look forward to chatting more when the dust settles a little for you :-) Joe.

Catherine El-Bez
5:26pm 13 January 2013 (Edited 5:29pm 13 January 2013)

Hi Joe,

Your project is really interesting. There is now a cloudscape and a posible team around digital literacy
In case you would like to join us. I've linked your cloud to the cloudscape 'Digital Literacy OLDSMOOC Cloudscape'
created by Art Oglesby.


Cathie Jackson
6:54pm 13 January 2013

Hi Joe

Count me in! ;-)


Sarah Davies
2:53pm 16 January 2013

Hi Joe,

I'd like to do something around staff development in digital literacy, either directly (as you suggest) or more change-mangement-type development in how to move forward as an institution in enabling and promoting digital literacies for students and staff.


Are you going to work here, or in the other could on digital literacy?



Joe Nicholls
3:41pm 16 January 2013

Hi Sarah - brill to see you here :-) and good question - I must admit, I'm torn between the undoubted benefit of pooling knowledge and expertise regardless of the nature of the project, but a little reticent because I'm unsure whether a strong focus on a MOOC as the approach will be at odds with context I'm interested in. I'm presuming you're referring to the team cloud Art has set up ? I suppose I won't know until I give it a stab. Perhaps the sensible thing would be to give the larger forum a shot and see how it plays out - possibly fork off later if appropriate. What do you think? joe

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