We take pride in delivering a great online learning experience at SAGE Campus. We operate stringent review processes at various stages throughout our course development to ensure that our material reaches the high level of quality that is expected of SAGE products.
Nicola Mueller, Assistant Editor, reflects upon the benefits of the SAGE Campus eLearning Advisory Board.
One of the goals of our review process is to ensure that our courses are pedagogically effective in order to deliver engaging learning. To this end, we work with an eLearning Advisory Board comprising specialists in online learning, technology and design, during course development. Their wide-ranging expertise allows us to gather feedback on various aspects of our courses including: the use of interactivity and activities, learner feedback and guidance, the look and feel of the course and its navigation. These important views ensure that the learner journey throughout the course is successful from start to finish.
Our eLearning experts review course content during two stages of course development. The first stage during which our courses are reviewed is at the end of the design phase. The aim of this first review is to ensure that the syllabus and overall design of the course meets our standards and the requirements of the audience. The design is evaluated by the advisory board via a module prototype, which helps us to envisage the look and feel of the course as a whole as well as its pedagogical effectiveness. Once the advisory board have taken a look at the prototype they complete an online survey, which helps us to capture their opinions on its design, including the look and feel, navigation and the planned activities.
Once the reviewers have had a chance to review the module and they’ve submitted their survey responses, my colleague Amy and I try to follow up either by conference call or meeting them for coffee. At this stage, we’ve received their feedback and we now have a chance to dig a little deeper and even do some cross course comparison. It’s a really nice way for us to ask “why” and a chance to have a discussion that can’t be done through a survey.
The second stage at which our courses are reviewed by the advisory board is during the authoring phase. The aim of the review during this period is to ensure that the finished modules meet the specifications agreed at the end of the design phase. At this point, modules are reviewed batch by batch to ensure that the course as a whole continues to be pedagogically robust and that the content is at the right level and pace for the audience. The advisory board also provide feedback on how effectively the learning objectives are met by the course content.
In order to fine-tune the pedagogy following the review feedback, we might make changes to the way that the content is presented. For example, we may wish to make it more interactive, easy to digest or coherent. We might also adapt the content itself to ensure that the level and pace of learning is appropriate for the audience.
The comments we receive from our advisory board throughout the process are invaluable to ensure that our courses meet the needs of our learners.
The advisory board are also guest writers for the SAGE Campus blog. A post by Ryan Watkins, Professor at George Washington University, Co-host of Parsing Science podcast, developer of We Share Science, discusses how faculty from education, data science, engineering, psychology and more, came together to sculpt a doctoral program that will prepare students for researching the ‘future of work’ in data intensive environments powered by intelligent technologies. Read the blog post Mindsets and Skillsets: Preparing for a future of work with intelligent technologies.