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The Open and Flexible Higher Education Conference 2014

“Online learning and the future of Higher Education”

23-24 October, Krakow

EADTU’s annual Conference 2014 is hosted by AGH University of Science and Technology

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In the next five years, online teaching and learning strongly affects higher education on all levels with innovations in pedagogical models and curriculum development.

New opportunities by open and flexible education

Online education leads to new opportunities for institutions to open their borders to the outside world and removes barriers for learners. Opening up education creates flexible opportunities to existing and new target groups. This requires a coherent institutional policy and appropriate organisational and business models within the institution. In addition governments should better stimulate and support universities in opening up to citizens and society at large.

Innovative pedagogical models for course design

By new forms of interaction, access to the global knowledge resources and organisational flexibility, new pedagogical models are emerging. Students will acquire new skills and attitudes, related to self-directed learning as persistence/discipline, self-management, exploration skills in knowledge networks, connectiveness with key sources in these networks, etc.

Curriculum Innovation: the impact of online teaching and learning on the organization and the cost-effectiveness of curricula

Online teaching and learning and their flexibility in terms of place, time and pace to study, will contribute to the curriculum innovation. Core questions are about the balance of using blended formats. The blend will be different according to the educational policy of faculties and institutions. Probably, some will use predominantly or even only online formats. The cost-effectiveness of the blend is assumed to increase when curricula are collaboratively constructed by teams of staff, rather than by individual staff, but leaving to each of the staff the primary role and responsibility of designing and delivering parts of the curriculum. Hence, the organisation of new types of curriculum and course design are critical quality features for institutions in their transition to blended or online education.