beta

You're viewing our new website - find out more

Publication - Publication

Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology

Published: 21 Sep 2016
Part of:
Education
ISBN:
9781786524737

National strategy to ensure all learners and educators are able to benefit from digital technology in their education.

44 page PDF

1.8MB

44 page PDF

1.8MB

Contents
Enhancing learning and teaching through the use of digital technology
Introduction

44 page PDF

1.8MB

Introduction

Our Vision

The Scottish Government is committed to improving education in Scotland and delivering the best possible life chances for all of our children and young people. The National Improvement Framework and Scottish Education Delivery Plan demonstrate this commitment. Our overarching vision for Scottish Education is therefore clear:

  • excellence through raising attainment: ensuring that every child achieves the highest standards in literacy and numeracy, set out within Curriculum for Excellence levels, and the right range of skills, qualifications and achievements to allow them to succeed; and
  • achieving equity: ensuring that every child has the same opportunity to succeed, with a particular focus on closing the poverty-related attainment gap.

Digital technology can make a substantial contribution to this improvement agenda by enriching education across all areas of Curriculum for Excellence. If used effectively and appropriately, digital technology can enhance learning and teaching, equip our children and young people with vital digital skills and crucially, it can lead to improved educational outcomes.

Digital technology is already embedded within Scottish education. It has a place within Curriculum for Excellence, Initial Teacher Education and the Professional Standards set by the General Teaching Council for Scotland ( GTCS). Despite the pervasive nature of digital technology, its benefits are not always fully felt within our education establishments [2] . This strategy aims to improve the current situation by creating the conditions to allow all of Scotland's educators, learners and parents to take full advantage of the opportunities offered by digital technology in order to raise attainment, ambition and opportunities for all.

Aim of the Strategy

In order to realise our vision, partners at both a national and local level must work together to achieve all four of the following essential and interrelated objectives that are central to successful digital learning, teaching and assessment [3] :

  • Develop the skills and confidence of educators in the appropriate and effective use of digital technology to support learning and teaching
  • Improve access to digital technology for all learners
  • Ensure that digital technology is a central consideration in all areas of curriculum and assessment delivery
  • Empower leaders of change to drive innovation and investment in digital technology for learning and teaching

Achieving Our Objectives

This strategy sets out a series of actions to be delivered at a national level under each objective; and these national level actions form the main focus of this document. These actions will shape our approach over the next 3-5 years. However, success cannot materialise at a national level alone and consequently, this strategy also sets out a number of expectations of our local authorities and education establishments.

The Scottish Government is firm in its belief that our local authorities, schools and early learning and childcare establishments are best positioned to know how digital technology can enrich education in their own local contexts. It is for that reason that the local level expectations that are laid out in this strategy are general in nature. They seek to complement actions at a national level while also allowing education establishments and local authorities the flexibility to effectively incorporate digital technology in the way best suited to them.

Taken as a whole, these actions and expectations will form the foundations that will allow digital technology to enhance learning and teaching across all areas of Curriculum for Excellence. We can then build on those foundations to ensure that digital technology is a key consideration in the planning and delivery of all future learning and teaching.

Beneficiaries of the Strategy

As this is an educational strategy, the ultimate beneficiaries of this strategy will be Scotland's learners aged 3-18. The appropriate and effective use of digital technology within education will give all of our learners the opportunity to improve their educational outcomes and to develop digital skills that will be vital for life, learning and work in today's increasingly digitised world. The benefits of this strategy also extend to our teachers and early learning and childcare practitioners who will receive training that will allow them to become skilled in the appropriate and effective use of digital technology. Parents and carers will also be able to capitalise on the increased use of digital technology to communicate more readily and easily with their child's school or early learning provider and stay up to date with, and support their child's learning. Both the digital industry and wider economy will similarly benefit as our future workforce will possess a level of digital skills considered essential in occupations across a wide range of sectors.

Approach to Strategy Development

This strategy has been developed using an extensive consultation process from which strategic principles, objectives and actions have emerged. The process comprised a comprehensive public consultation, direct engagement with children and young people and extensive discussions with delivery partners and other prominent stakeholders in the Scottish education sector.

An overview of the strategy development process can be found in Annex D.

The Role of the Scottish Government and National Bodies

To help to achieve our objectives, the Scottish Government and national level delivery partners will work with local partners to [4] :

DEVELOP THE SKILLS OF OUR EDUCATORS
  • Ensure Professional Standards for Registration and for Career Long Professional Learning reflect the importance of digital technology and skills.
  • Ensure that Initial Teacher Education ( ITE) providers instil the benefits of using digital technology to enhance learning and teaching in their students, in line with GTCS Standards for Registration.
  • Ensure that a range of formal and informal professional learning opportunities are available to educators at all stages to equip them with the skills and confidence to utilise digital technology appropriately and effectively, in line with GTCS Standards for Career Long Professional Learning.
IMPROVE ACCESS
  • Continue national investment into initiatives that support digital access in education establishments.
  • Provide guidance at a national and local level around learner access to digital technology.
  • Promote approaches to digital infrastructure in education that put users' needs at the heart of the design.
  • Encourage and facilitate the development of partnerships that will improve digital access and digital skills development opportunities for our learners.
ENHANCE CURRICULUM AND ASSESSMENT DELIVERY
  • Ensure aspects of Curriculum for Excellence relating to the use of digital technology and the development of digital skills are relevant, ambitious and forward looking.
  • Support, develop and embed approaches to assessment that make effective use of digital technology.
EMPOWER LEADERS
  • Ensure that the vision laid out in this strategy is adequately captured in Professional Standards, self-evaluation guidance and inspections of educational provision in Scotland.
  • Support local leaders and decision makers to lead change in their local contexts through accessing and sharing relevant research in order to identify effective approaches to the use of digital technology in education.

The Role of Local Authorities

To help achieve our shared objectives, local authorities are asked to develop local strategies which will take forward the following key actions:

DEVELOP THE SKILLS OF OUR EDUCATORS
  • Provide their educators with access to a range of career-long professional learning opportunities that will allow them to make the most effective use of digital technology to enrich learning and teaching and develop the digital skills of their learners.
  • Actively share experiences, information and opportunities that will support the professional development of their educators.
IMPROVE ACCESS
  • Have an ambitious strategy regarding the use of digital technology in education and actively look for opportunities to continually invest in a sustainable digital infrastructure, including the procurement of appropriate digital devices.
  • Ensure that digital technology is a key consideration in all local authority investment programmes pertaining to improvements in the education estate.
  • Facilitate dialogue between local authority IT and education departments to ensure that education establishments receive appropriate and effective digital access and that the future needs of learners are proactively and regularly considered.
  • Support education establishments in delivering digital access to all learners.
  • Actively participate in Education Scotland's 'Digital Leaders Group' and look to share knowledge across local authority boundaries.
  • Ensure that all learners and educators within the local authority area can access relevant digital tools and services by assigning them with a Glow login.
ENHANCE CURRICULUM AND ASSESSMENT DELIVERY
  • Actively work with SQA to share experiences in order to help develop and improve approaches to digital assessment.
  • Support education establishments in delivering the revised technologies area of Curriculum for Excellence, with particular focus on Digital Literacy and Computing Science.
  • Support education establishments in identifying how digital technology can be used to enhance learning and teaching across all curriculum areas.
EMPOWER LEADERS
  • Develop local strategies that will help educational leaders to ensure that all learners can benefit from an education enhanced by digital technology.
  • Provide access to a range of career-long professional learning opportunities for educational leaders, allowing them to make informed decisions about the best use of digital technology to enrich education and promote digital skills development.
  • Actively share knowledge and examples of how digital technology can enrich education and facilitate digital skills development across education establishments and local authority boundaries.

The Role of our Education Establishments

To help achieve our shared objectives, our education establishments are asked to take forward the following key actions:

DEVELOP THE SKILLS OF OUR EDUCATORS
  • Encourage educators to share innovative and effective practice both face-to-face and through digital platforms.
  • Ensure that students and newly qualified staff are sufficiently supported in the appropriate and effective use of digital technology.
  • Look for opportunities to use digital technology to engage with parents and carers, allowing them to understand the benefits of digital technology in education.
  • Ensure that appropriate career-long professional learning opportunities are offered to a range of educators.
  • Ensure learners are involved in sharing their digital experiences and skills and that they are given opportunities to comment on the use of digital technologies to deliver learning and teaching.
IMPROVE ACCESS
  • Work with the local authority to obtain appropriate digital hardware and software that can support learning and teaching.
  • Ensure all learners including those with additional support needs are able to access appropriate digital technology for learning and teaching.
  • Ensure that all learners become resilient users of digital technology and can stay safe online.
ENHANCE CURRICULUM AND ASSESSMENT DELIVERY
  • Ensure that the use of digital technology is a central consideration in the planning and delivery of any learning and teaching across Curriculum for Excellence.
  • Provide a range of opportunities for learners to develop their digital skills across Curriculum for Excellence.
  • Work to identify opportunities to enhance assessment using digital technologies.
EMPOWER LEADERS
  • Ensure that the use of digital within their establishment aligns closely with evolving self-assessment and improvement guidance such as 'How Good is Our School?
  • Actively seek to identify existing expertise within the staff complement and ensure that their knowledge is shared with senior leaders.
  • Ensure that cyber resilience and internet safety is central to all digital technology use in the establishment.
  • Involve parent councils and parent/carer groups in discussions around the use of digital technology to help realise anytime/anywhere learning.

Contact

Email: Russell Cockburn, russell.cockburn@gov.scot