Award-winning Digital Learning team recognised for ethical use of learning technology

22 September 2022

Digital Learning Team winning an award
Digital Learning Team winning an award
Type: Text
Category: University news, Innovation

Falmouth University’s Digital Learning team has won an Ethical EdTech Award 2022 for a framework and toolkit that enables sustainability criteria tracking for online, virtual and hybrid digital events.  

Titled the ‘Sustainable Digital Events Management System’ (SDEMS), the innovative toolkit has been awarded the Case Studies of Ethical EdTech Award 2022 by the Association for Learning Technology (ALT). The Digital Learning team was also highly commended in another category – the ALT Award for Institutions and Teams – for their approach to a large-scale project to develop and launch a new fully in-house online course offer. This project took place at the same time as the team supporting on-campus staff and students by translating creative, practical and community-based curriculum into online and blended modes during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The SDEMS is the result of a research project carried out by Caragh King, the team’s Digital Intern and BA(Hons) Creative Events Management graduate, who identified the need for a specific framework to measure and report greenhouse gas emissions for online events hosted by UK universities.  

On their involvement, Caragh told us: “I have an immense sense of personal and professional achievement in delivering this sustainability-focused research project on behalf of Falmouth University. I am grateful for the opportunity to deepen my own understanding in how, collectively, we can provide suitable and long-term sustainable digital best practices in higher education online and hybrid events.” 

President of the ALT David White - Head of Digital Education at University of the Arts London - commented: "Falmouth University has undertaken a vital piece of work which will be of value to anyone weighing up the relative merits of building online events in-house. Their diligent method and elegant use of data clearly demonstrates the benefits of online events and education in support of sustainability agendas, and as an ethical choice in the context of the climate crisis. This work represents an important step in developing a deeper understanding of the environmental cost of different modes of education.” 

In recognition of the Falmouth Digital Learning team, David added: “The team have rapidly developed a sophisticated approach to the design and delivery of full undergraduate and postgraduate online programmes. A significant number of these programmes are in creative subject areas which are often considered to be particularly challenging to take online. Not only does the team develop fully online courses, but they also support the digital education aspects of Falmouth’s on-campus programmes. Their ability to work across all modes is a testament to the energy and positive culture within the team.” 

Head of Digital Learning at Falmouth, Amy Sampson, is delighted with the recognition from ALT. She commented: “To win and be highly commended in two categories for the ALT awards is a fantastic accomplishment. These awards celebrate excellent practice and outstanding achievement in learning technology, attracting much competition internationally. To be recognised twice at this level validates the dedication and commitment the team has in advancing quality education, and we are very proud.”    

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