The Learning Technologies Unit

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The Learning Technologies Unit has over the years engaged teachers in the use of learning technologies in a variety of educational settings. Our general focus on learning technologies in a variety of unique contexts opens the door for students to explore postgraduate studies in a number of fields that incorporate the innovative use of these technologies.

The current Online Master Degree in ICTs in Education is a flagship program at UJ. The purpose of the MEd (Information and Communication Technology) is to strengthen and deepen the specialist advanced theoretical knowledge and practical skills of experienced practitioners in ICT use in Education. Another purpose is to prepare practitioners with an NQF-8 level educational or human resources development qualification to take leadership positions as teacher specialists or subject heads at the micro (e.g. school), meso (e.g. provincial) or macro (national) levels. The development of “thought leaders” is a theme that can be found throughout the entire programme. This qualification develops specialised competence and evidence-based practices in the dynamic and ever changing discipline of ICT in Education. The programme aims at theoretical engagement and intellectual independence, and hands-on skills development. Teachers will develop sufficient academic understanding in current developments in the teaching of ICT Innovation in Education. They will further gain eco-systemic insight into the developments in the discipline. Finally, the purpose of the qualification is to capacitate students to conduct ethical independent research in ICT in Education under the supervision of qualified staff members.

The Unit also plays an important role in the current BEd Honours in STEM Education with Prof Lautenbach presenting the module Research Methodology for STEM Researchers, and Prof C Van Der Westhuizen and Dr Moodley presenting the Research Project module as well as the Current Issues module. New colleague Dr R Bailey will also be taking on an active role in this programme.

Unit members play an important role in the undergraduate BEd programme with Prof Lautenbach, Prof C Van Der Westhuizen, and Dr Moodley teaching the Teaching Studies 1A module which focuses on the 21st century teacher. Another key module in the undergraduate program is Teaching Studies 3B where Prof Lautenbach and Prof Van Der Westhuizen teach about integrating technologies into teaching and learning with the specific focus of creating a personal learning network with available technological tools, Apps and services. This module was the first undergraduate online module at UJ and is still presented as an online offering.

The subject methodologies in the third and fourth year focus on the Role of the ICT Support Specialist. These modules are presented by Dr Moodley and Prof Lautenbach.

The unit is currently led by Prof Geoff Lautenbach. The rest of the team includes Prof Christo Van der Westhuizen, Dr Maglin Moodley, and Dr Roxanne Bailey.