Open, future, online teaching: enabling excellence in the student experience

Farrell, Orna, Brunton, James, Costello, Eamon, Conole, Gráinne, Trevaskis, Samantha and Donlon, Enda (2019) Open, future, online teaching: enabling excellence in the student experience.


This mixed-methods study reports on a continuing professional development intervention (CPD), called #OpenTeach, designed to upskill part-team online teachers. CPD is recognised as crucial to the upskilling of educators to enhance the student learning experience. However, an important gap exists in the provision of CPD for part-time and online teachers who rarely have the opportunity to avail of campus-based resources (Beaton & Gilbert, 2013). To address this gap we need to better harness the potential of more flexible models of online education. Geographically dispersed online teachers require opportunities to engage with new learning designs, new digital competencies and new ways of embedding digital technology in teaching, learning and assessment. Accordingly, the #OpenTeach intervention addresses this challenge through a highly targeted CPD programme for part-time online teachers. The core of the initiative involves the development a short open online course on online teaching best practice. This course will develop the digital and pedagogical competencies of the 90 DCU Connected online teachers locally and will be open to online educators globally. The #OpenTeach: Professional Development for Open Online Educators project is funded by the Irish National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.

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