OLT Going Viral Project

What we already know about this topic

  • Blended learning has been identified by the 2015 New Media Consortium Horizon Report as a short term trend in higher education globally.
  • Viral leadership is well described and used in the business sector. 
  • A viral leadership framework that describes the interactions within networks at several higher education institutions was a key outcome of the ALTC Viral Leadership Project
  • The digital literacies capacity, inclusive of how to utilise learning technologies effectively for teaching and learning, of many higher education sector academics needs ongoing support.

How this project will contribute to successful blended learning at JCU

  • Higher education staff need to know how and when to use learning technologies in their teaching.
  • The viral leadership framework successfully described the existing informal networks at JCU.
  • Each network identified student engagement as the key driver for adopting and using learning technologies.
  • Super infectors initially target specific staff to introduce a new learning technology to, before allowing the network to ‘infect’ other staff.
  • Super infectors have credibility within their networks.
  • Informal conversations support the learning technology infection.

Implications for practice and policy

  • Alternative professional development strategies that focus on supporting super and regular infectors with master classes, rather than a ‘one-size-fits-all' approach.
  • The central unit should support networks through the super infector as a means of maintaining sustainability.
  • The central unit should ‘see’ and support interactions between existing networks to enable ‘cross-fertilisation’ of ideas and/or adaption of approaches.

Project contact 

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Going Viral Final Report