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Instructure unveils new web video-based teaching aid

Practice is intended to allow teachers to build confidence and competence, backed by peer and expert feedback

Posted by Julian Owen | January 24, 2019 | Technology

Instructure, a software-as-a-service technology company, has today announced the release of Practice to help train and support high quality teachers. 

Practice, says the firm, creates a low-risk environment for every teacher to develop both competence and confidence, regardless of phase, subject area, or style of pedagogy. The web video-based professional development tool gives teachers the opportunity to learn by doing, and receive peer and expert feedback as part of continuing professional development (CPD).

Dr Philippa Hardman, director of learning at Proversity, which develops personalised, own-branded mobile learning apps for partners, said: “Currently, a lot of education is still rooted in dumping information on learners and then asking them to regurgitate it when tested. But learning that sticks with you comes through experience, and a key part of this is practice – working in structured and supported cycles of doing, reflecting - then doing again. This is why Canvas launching Practice is exciting – it promises to facilitate this approach to learning and help educators grow and develop, ultimately having a positive impact on student achievement.” 

Practice applies technology to better use peer and expert feedback and self-reflection, removing barriers and giving schools the opportunity to mimic online what would be done in face-to-face CPD sessions

The cycle of use for Practice is formed of four key stages. Firstly, teachers learn a new skill by doing, practising instructional delivery skills and teaching methodologies, before sharing a video of this in action; for example, delivering a subject-specific plenary. Next, fellow teachers assess one another’s videos where they give and receive feedback. Teachers then watch best practice videos and reflect on their own practice. Finally, teachers receive feedback from mentors and coaches, helping to widely share the specific expertise and skills of top teachers. 

Recent figures from the Teacher Development Trust have concluded that, despite the essential nature of continued training and development in ensuring that teachers are able to deliver high quality education, more than 20,000 teachers work in schools where there is no budget for continued professional development. 

The web video-based professional development tool gives teachers the opportunity to learn by doing, and receive peer and expert feedback

Kenny Nicholl, general manager of EMEA at Instructure, said: "Without quality teaching, it is simply impossible to increase student achievement; too often, personal development and training end up being tick box exercises at best, or not happening at all. We have great teachers not being given the opportunity to develop, but to pull off effective CPD programs you need a huge amount of time, money, and people

"Practice applies technology to better use peer and expert feedback and self-reflection, removing barriers and giving schools the opportunity to mimic online what would be done in face-to-face CPD sessions, or through teachers taking time to observe classrooms. This means schools and groups of schools can scale up their ability to offer more frequent meaningful training at a lower cost point." 

Practice is integrated to the Instructure suite of cloud-based online learning products, including Canvas, Instructure's open online virtual learning environment for schools, colleges and higher education. 

To learn more, please click here.

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