Easy as ABC
ABC Learning Design is a high-speed workshop which results in a collaborative course/programme design. Devised by UCL Minds at UCL Digital Education, it’s so effective it’s been translated into 12 languages and is being adopted by numerous organisations. Course design made fun!
UCL researchers have developed an effective and engaging hands-on workshop to help time-pressured academics design their courses.
Blended and online courses and distance learning are on the rise, but many academics don’t have advanced design skills or technological knowledge to remodel their programmes to meet the creative standards that education increasingly demands.
Most leading universities have the aspirational strategies to develop future-looking, content-rich and flexible courses but deep institutional change must engage mainstream academics. Current methods of learning design are time consuming and require intensive support.
The UCL Digital Education Advisory team has developed an effective and engaging hands-on workshop called ABC, which uses a game-style format and is particularly useful for developing new programmes or for those changing to an online or more blended format. ABC Learning Design was awarded two- year Erasmus + funding in 2018 and has been used in over 80 universities across the world.
The 90-minute workshop sets teams to work together to create a storyboard outlining the type and sequence of online and offline activities required to meet the course’s learning outcomes. The method has been translated into 12 languages (Spanish, French, Italian, Flemish, Estonian, Finnish, Croatian, Romania, Danish, Swedish, Welsh and Norwegian) and has been adapted for use by FutureLearn, the Royal College of Surgeons and Health Education England.
HEFCE project evaluation has found the level of teaching sophistication expressed through the workshop to be remarkably high. The fast-paced format and the presence of colleagues and support staff stimulate discussions on the purpose of the module or programme, teaching methods, alternative technologies, assessment methods and above all the student experience.