South Gloucestershire and Stroud College have been shortlisted for the prestigious Times Educational Supplement Further Education Awards for outstanding use of technology for improving teaching, learn
The news came last month following the innovative use of Microsoft Teams being integrated into the core learning of its students. Head of Digital, Simon Kay, implemented the new approach at SGS College. He comments:
“At the end of last year the College was named as a Microsoft Showcase College which highlighted SGS as being a leader for the sector. That alone was a great achievement but being shortlisted for this award shows how much the hard work of staff and the innovation which the College continues to demonstrate, has paid off for our students and their learning.”
Following a yearlong pilot of Microsoft Teams, the College has now comprehensively rolled out Teams to all staff and students. Impressively, 4 weeks into the cross-college launch 4400 learners and staff were using Teams – our entire full-time student body and staff! From a learner perspective, this real-time, secure platform allows peer to peer and learner to teacher interaction on a level never before experienced! Learners can also access all learning materials and it also provides a secure environment for assessment processes.
Tes FE editor Stephen Exley said:
“Excellent practice exists right across the further education sector, and those shortlisted for the Tes FE Awards are the cream of the crop. Our judges were extremely impressed with the calibre of entries. To be shortlisted is an extraordinary achievement."
Lawrie Phipps, Senior Codesign Manager at Jisc added:
“Having researched in the area of emerging digital learning environment for several years I have seen universities and colleges make incremental changes in their approach, sometimes successfully, but often without achieving that reached for paradigm shift. Simon, and his Digital Team at SGS College, have made a bold move in implementing a new approach, and switching off the past. His approach is grounded in his knowledge of both the way the college operates and in understanding learning and teaching; this then is one of the first institutions I have seen that is shifting from the content driven pedagogy so familiar in our Virtual Learning Environments, to a pedagogy based on connecting staff and students and with a strong emphasis on communication. The presented early results are excellent and I continue to watch and look forward to seeing how the shift progresses.