S. Kucina Softic1, J. Lasić Lazić2

1University of Zagreb, Computing Centre SRCE (CROATIA)
2University of Zagreb, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (CROATIA)
The ubiquity of digital technologies has significantly changed the way people live today, how they communicate, the way they work, they enjoy their free time, the way they organize their lives and the way they source knowledge and information. For systematic and qualitative implementation of e-learning at university level, organized support in e-learning is indispensable. No less significant is the recognition of their achievements and good practice in teaching and awarding their efforts for integration of e-learning into educational process. The University of Zagreb has been for number of years recognizing teacher’s efforts in e-learning through the E-learning Award. This initiative served as a good enhancement for the systematic e-learning implementation at the University of Zagreb.

The process of systematic implementation of e-learning at the University of Zagreb started with the adoption of the E-learning Strategy in 2007 (University of Zagreb 2007). Along with the University E-learning Strategy, the E-learning Centre at SRCE and the University's Office of E-learning were also established.

The E-learning Centre at the University of Zagreb University Computing Centre SRCE was established as the focal point for systematic adoption and support to e-learning across the University along with the beginning of systematic implementation of e-learning. Besides well organized and sustainable support to teachers in the integration of e-learning into educational process, it is of great importance to recognize their time and efforts involved in the developing and running e-courses. The E-learning Award is one of the ways to do it. Based on the good and positive experience from the University of Porto, Vienna University of Technology and University of Edinburgh with whom the University of Zagreb cooperated in the international Tempus project EQIBELT, the E-learning Awards was set as one of the activities for enhancement and fostering the e-learning implementation within the University of Zagreb E-learning Strategy. The e-learning award is granted on the annual basis for the best e-learning courses. The aim of this award was to enhance education quality improvement by e-learning technologies, to foster excellence in education and to promote good practice of the use of ICT in education. The award is given to the courses that have integrated technologies in the best possible way to acquire new teaching methods and provide innovative, students centred learning with clearly defined learning outcomes and ways to assess them. The E-learning award was presented at the University of Zagreb from 2008 till 2015. In total 60 e-courses from the University of Zagreb applied on the competition and 24 of them received one of the awards. Looking at the University of Zagreb management initiative some University faculties have also established the E-learning Award at their institution as a way to foster e-learning implementation but also as a recognition of teacher’s efforts to improve the education process.