TEACHERS’ TRAINING TO TRIGGER THE UNIVERSITY’S DIGITAL TRANSITION

A.M. Berruecos Vila, I. Ochoa-Carrasco

Universidad Iberoamericana Ciudad de México-Tijuana (MEXICO)
From 2006 to December 2016, the Distance Education Office (DED) at the Universidad Iberoamericana in Mexico City, used the LMS Blackboard to provide support to online courses (OC) and for the application of departmental exams. Only 4 teacher-training courses in the use of the platform and of some of its tools were offered. There was no data that demonstrated the actual use of the LMS since the DED did not have the Analytics software, although in 2014 a study on the number of clicks was carried out. It showed that in 84.8% of the cases, there was little or no use. In 9.9% of the cases it was used as a repository (intermediate use). In 4.3% of the cases (high use) it was used as support of face-to-face courses, but with no data that evidenced the way it was used. In 1% of the cases (very high use) for offering OC’s.

In August 2015, the administration of the DED changed and with it, an initial assessment and interviews with academic department coordinators and professors were carried out. The new administration decided to change the LMS to Brightspace in January 2017. This change was understood as the triggering element for the start of an institutional strategy towards educational innovation and digital transformation through teacher training.

From October 2016 to March 2019, the now called Office of Technology-Mediated Teaching and Learning (DEAMeT) has designed and offered 49 different workshops with an enrollment of more than 3000 teachers as part of the techno-pedagogical training permanent program in which we included not only the use of the platform and its different tools, but also workshops to promote the development of digital competencies in teachers (using as a framework EU's DigComEdu), the approach to trends in education (blended learning, flipped classroom, gamification) and the integration of technologies in teaching and learning processes, as well as their implications.

The data up to March 2019 are:
- Increase in the demand of OC design (from 3.4 per semester to 11.3 per semester)
- Use of the platform in 2018: 23% of the use by students is for taking OC’s and the remainder 76.7% as support to face-to-face courses.
- Download of Pulse application at mobile devices: in 2017 a total of 4050 students downloaded it. In January 2019 there were 8163 downloads. That is, more than 60% of the student population is using it.
- An increase in the demand of online or blended courses: 5 graduate, 1 for the gender issues program, 1 for the Library, 4 international diploma courses, 1 specialty, teacher induction program, professional practice, shared venue courses with Universidad Iberoamericana Tijuana.

Conclusion:
Even when we admit that there are other factors that can explain this increase (Z generation, for example), the impact that the teacher techno-pedagogical training in familiarizing them with digital technologies, knowing the advantages of using the LMS, "other ways" of teaching courses in order to benefit student learning and the awareness of the changing roles of teachers, are all signs of the actual use that students are giving to the platform and of the internal demand of online and blended courses. There is specially a lot of research to do, but we are convinced that after almost 4 years, we can allow ourselves to talk about a digital transition in our university.