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'Bridging Tools' for change: evaluating a collaborative learning network.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>1/09/2001
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Computer Assisted Learning
Issue number3
Volume17
Number of pages11
Pages (from-to)295-305
Publication statusPublished
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This paper outlines the evaluation approach associated with the Learn-Nett project under the SOCRATES initiative. It describes the project, locates the role of evaluation within it and finally conceptualises the role evaluation might play in a change process. The paper argues that evaluation in these circumstances can be essentially formative but also be prompted by a search for new knowledge in the area of changing practices in learning. It identifies ‘transition’ as anomic and the need to develop ‘provisional stability’ for change to occur effectively. In such periods of change, evaluation products can act as useful ‘bridging tools’ which can support the development of ‘provisional stability’.

Bibliographic note

This work was undertaken within the evaluative research paradigm in which a complex EU project where a new (ICT based) learning environment was researched by use of survey and semi structured methodology in order to develop a novel form of student learning experience. The role of evaluation as a way of providing 'provisional stability' in rapidly changing educational contexts formed the outcome of the research reported here. This idea has been subsequently taken up as an approach to the evaluation of complex policy implementation in the evaluation of the LTSN and QEF within the UK HE context and within the EU in three subsequent projects (EQUEL, LEARN-NETT, ELAC and PALETTE). Murray Saunders undertook the research design and developed the theoretical analytical approach. The paper was refereed 'blind' by three referees familiar with the field of research. RAE_import_type : Journal article RAE_uoa_type : Education