To What Extent Do Academic Staff See An E-learning Framework As Being Effective In Supporting Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) Discussions And Activities?


  • Simon Thomson Leeds Beckett University



e-learning frameworks, digital pedagogy, academic development, phenomenography


This study examines the effectiveness of e-learning frameworks in engaging academic staff in the discussions and activities associated with technology enhanced learning (TEL) development. In particular, the paper explores the effectiveness of a framework in use at Leeds Beckett University as part of the development of digital literacy as a graduate attribute.

The research investigates the extent to which staff identify with the framework and the associated activities. They are required to undertake mapping exercises in order to use the framework in their own practice to support digital literacy development.

A phenomenographic approach was taken in order to identify the variation in experiences staff had with regards to the e-learning framework activities. Using semi-structured interviews, evidence was gathered from which categories of variation were identified. Although participant numbers were limited this was overcome by the use of purposeful sampling.

Analysis revealed that staff experienced the use of the e-learning framework in three ways:

  1. as a tool for communicating their use of technology for teaching with their learners,
  2. as a mechanism for mapping and sharing best practice with peers,
  3. as a tool for measuring e-learning activity and reporting on it.

The final outcome space identified the potential for the current framework to be expanded beyond its intended audience to other prospective stakeholders. This study also spotlights opportunities to extend this research to provide a richer evidence base and identify potential practical applications.

Author Biography

Simon Thomson, Leeds Beckett University

Simon Thomson is Head of Digital Pedagogy at Leeds Beckett University. His work focuses on open education and digital learning. In 2014 Simon was awarded an HEA National Teaching Fellow and is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. He can be contacted via Twitter: @digisim


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Original Research