If you could have the best learning platform in the world, what would it do for you?

I remember doing my NPQH way back in 2003, the joy of being with like-minded professionals eager to develop, the thrill of learning new ways of doing things, the anxiety of that final assessment! The trouble was, I only met with these folks either on the face-to-face days or the occasional meeting with my study group.

What kept me going was the ability to use the discussion networks on the National College website so I could get some feedback on my own thoughts from colleagues and get some solutions for the issues I faced.

It wasn’t perfect but I persevered. Why? Because as a teacher I had already found out how powerful a group of teachers can be when they get together sharing information, practice as well as life’s highs and lows.

Fast forward to today. That experience has been proved time and again in the programmes and short courses Best Practice Network runs, especially in the online discussions. They regularly achieve scores of over 95% for satisfaction and facilitation but the qualitative feedback is mostly about the importance of engaging with colleagues and learning from each other.

Sadly, the National College has announced that from 30 September, 2014 they are no longer supporting their network of communities and that all the resources on their website are either going to be archived, made publically available or handed over to those who are running particular programmes of study.

Fortuitously this coincided with our own move, prompted by comments from you, our participants, candidates, tutors, facilitators and others, to find a learning platform, which would be responsive to your needs now and in the future.

So, that’s what we did. Collated the feedback from evaluations about the biggest barriers to learning you felt you faced, talked to facilitators about what would make their life easier and then carried out extensive desk top research, identified about 30 possibles, filtered these by sending out requests for proposals based on the needs, then interviewed the top two and eventually settled on Instructure’s Canvas.

Ease of navigation – clarity of layout – adaptability for facilitators – accessible by app on IoS and Android devices. Basically, as much as possible, it puts you in the driving seat.

Our NASENCO programme has already started to use it, the NPQH, NQPSL and NPQML courses will begin in September and we’ll let you know about training opportunities. In the meantime, if you want to know more about it take look at this video.

Quite an investment, but we think you’re worth it. That’s what makes BPN the best.

Tim McShane
Online Learning Specialist, Best Practice Network

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