The move to digital learning
The coronavirus pandemic has paved a significantly rapid path for the development and use of digital technology in education and other industries.
At Coleg Sir Gâr and Coleg Ceredigion, staff and learners have adapted and responded well, particularly during national lockdown when the Welsh Government closed schools and colleges.
Lectures continue online but with a blended learning approach which allows full-time learners to safely access onsite college days.
The colleges’ digital and innovation manager, Charlie Hammond, who is part of the Teaching and Learning team has been key in supporting staff to deliver remote learning. “There were only 400 Google Meets in the six months prior to lockdown,” he said. “During lockdown there were up to 1,000 in a day and now we average about 3,500 a week integrating it with 50/50 teaching and learning.”
Google Meet has become a core tool for Coleg Sir Gâr and Coleg Ceredigion and now, thanks to the Welsh Government’s Digital 2030 funding, the college has integrated it with Google Jamboard which takes teaching online to another level.
Jamboard allows teams and individuals from all over the world to get together, share ideas and work collaboratively in a highly-advanced digital environment.
Charlie Hammond said: “The pandemic has created an accelerator pad for digital technology and its uses in teaching and learning.
“We are fortunate that staff have embraced all these challenges and are focusing on delivering quality provision through the use of a wide range of cloud-based technologies.
“These developments were always a part of our strategic plan; however, the pandemic has brought forward the time frame to a point that was unimaginable just nine months ago.”
Open days and open evenings have moved online to adhere to government guidelines and behind the scenes, curriculum staff have been busy developing a Google site to support this.
There are over 400 Google Meets set-up for this event in an array of curriculum areas in readiness to welcome the public and to share information on a personal and digital level.