'Weaving Technology' organiser has national award all sewn up

Published:29 November 2018

The Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE) has recognised Associate Professor Michael Cowling with a Community Fellow Award.

CQUniversity academic and Queensland Digital Champion,  Associate Professor Michael Cowling has earned a national award for his role leading the 'Weaving Technology into the Fabric of the Classroom' workshop series which reached 150 teachers across Queensland.

The Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE) Community Fellow Award recognises Assoc Prof Cowling's hands-on sessions in innovative technology which were hosted by the CREATE Lab at CQUniversity.

"Mixed reality technologies, including virtual reality and augmented reality, can enable teachers to create a new blended reality that gives students a seamless digital experience," Assoc Prof Cowling says.

"Robotics can embrace small ball-shaped robots controlled via mobile phone through to pre-built anthropomorphic robots designed to complete human-like tasks.

"Meantime, cloud computing technologies enable robot systems to be endowed with powerful capability whilst reducing costs by offloading processing to computers in the cloud."

The workshops stressed a focus on effective learning, or ‘pedagogy before technology’, rather than the other way around.

"The workshops came out of the clear emerging need for all facets of the education sector to understand how best to weave technology into their classroom practice," Assoc Prof Cowling says.

"Multiple teachers sent e-mails indicating that they loved the sessions and found them very useful.

"The sessions also resulted in several follow-up connections between local schools and the University."

Assoc Prof Cowling acknowledges the assistance of CQUni colleagues as well as Dr Carina Bossu (UTAS) and Bond University academics Associate Professor James Birt, Dr Christian Moore and Nikolche Vasilevski.