About the Project

The project Online4EDU introduces online collaboration tools in education by providing a blended learning course for teachers. Five partner organizations from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany and Ireland are involved in creating and establishing a training that complies with the ECDL-Test standards for online collaboration tools. The project is founded within the Erasmus+ program of the European Commission. LIKTA coordinates the 24 month lasting project from September 2014 till the end of August 2016.

Target group

Teachers in primary, secondary and vocational schools who want and need to develop their IT-skills.

Aims

The objective of the project Online4EDU is to support teachers in applying more digital media in everyday school life. Online collaboration tools can thereby enrich teaching and learning in all school subjects, and help teachers to find, create and organize new and up-to-date learning materials. The project Online4EDU will therefore create a blended learning concept that facilitates online collaboration tools for school teachers of primary, lower and upper secondary and vocational schools. Therewith a training opportunity for teachers, that meets their knowledge and skill-needs, will be created. It will further support them in integrating wikis, online share and learn platforms into their lessons. The blended learning concept will also prepare teachers for the EDCL test on online collaboration.

Procedure

The project will address the project´s objectives by a multi-stage approach in which a curriculum will be created and adapted to the respective national contexts. Afterwards the curriculum will be tested in a blended learning course which will be the basis for recommendations about the implementation of the concept:

  • In order to receive a more authentic view of the learning needs of teachers in Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania and Germany, national surveys will be conducted with the aim to analyse the gaps of knowledge and skills which teachers might possess in the field of online collaboration.
  • Based on the survey results and the ECDL standards for Online Collaboration, a curriculum will be created that meets the national learning needs of teachers.
  • A blended learning course, that includes at least one face-to-face training and additional course material on the e-learning platform Moodle, will be designed. The course will prepare the trainees to conduct the ECDL test on Online Collaboration.
  • The project will promote the blended learning concept on a national and international level by disseminating results and guidelines for the implementation of the project results.

Background

Digital media can be found in all areas of private, social and economic life and is now used by every age group. Children tend to utilize tools and applications offered by digital media for entertainment, to communicate with friends and family and to look for information when doing school work. The so-called “digital natives'' grow up with computers and the internet as innate parts of their lives and as an intuitive way to solve any of their problems. That is why it is rather remarkable that most school curricula do not foresee a comprehensive implementation of digital media tools in education yet, although many students already combine these important parts of their life.

Online applications can both enrich school lessons, when teaching and learning with digital media, and support children in their online behavior, when teaching and learning about digital media. In order to include digital media into schools, teachers not only need to know and handle suitable online tools but also need to be educated in applying them in their lessons and pass their knowledge forward. Online collaboration tools for teachers can and should be beneficial. Cloud data storage, wikis and web-based word processors support the preparation of learning material with other teachers online. The organization, structure and stimulation of lessons enable students to use those tools independently and in a responsible way. For these reasons, a blended learning concept, that facilitates online collaboration tools to teachers, will be created, tested and implemented into national education pathways for teachers in this project. The blended learning concept will strongly focus on the ECDL module “Online collaboration''.