Research and Innovation

The Research and Innovation Taskforce was established by ICDE with the focus to: 

  • Initiate a meta-study on the state of research and innovation in open, distance, flexible and online education, including e-learning
  • Identify the grand challenges of research in open, distance, flexible and online education, including e-learning
  • Encourage cooperation amongst ICDE members on research and innovation (R&I); and
  • Advise the ICDE Executive Committee on R&I issues.

Research and Innovation Taskforce - final report

The ICDE Research and Innovation Taskforce conducted research in 2014 to better understand the state of research and innovation in open, distance, flexible and online education, including e-learning across ICDE members. The Taskforce is led by Prof. Belinda Tynan, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Innovation) at Open University UK.

This research was conducted in the form of a survey disseminated to ICDE members in October to December 2014. Analysis of data demonstrated a number of trends as well as insight into next steps.

In concluding this stage of the research the following elements were reported:

  • That the respondents targeted for the survey was correct for their ability and knowledge of their institutions strategies.
  • That a wide range of educational institutions from within the ICDE members responded, ensuring that the data was not skewed toward predominantly large or small institutions.
  • That resource is primarily provided centrally for innovation in learning and teaching however, however, predominately this equates to a low percentage of total spend across the institution.
  • Educational institutions highlighted that future research might focus on MOOCs and OERs. Although, flipped classrooms was a reoccurring theme which is in line with broader developments globally within the education sector. Quality issues remain a topic of concern.
  • According to respondents it was felt that learning analytics and blended learning would be of immediate concern over the next 12 months.
  • The most prevalent concerns in using new technology for teaching and research was a lack of knowledge about technologies and the corresponding fast pace of change along with adequate and appropriate professional development of staff.
  • Approximately 60% of respondents either disagreed or strongly disagreed that in ten years that there would only be a small group of global providers comprising of large brand universities and companies.
  • The split was fairly even with regards to whether the majority of teaching will be online in the next five years. However, 42.11% agreed and 7.02% strongly agreed that automated assessment and analytics will form at least half of the student feedback within five years.
  • There was an acknowledgement towards the movement for increased inclusion of open content constituting to at least 50% of all courses within five years.
  • Nearly 71% of respondents either agreed or strongly agreed that how education is delivered will substantially change over the next decade.
  • A strong and encouraging response of 82.84% was had from respondents wishing for further collaboration within the ICDE network to undertake research, with 87.27% responding positively to publication and dissemination of this research.

Research and Innovation Taskforce members

  • Prof Belinda Tynan, The Open University (Project Accountable Executive and Chair)
  • Hannah Gore, Project Manager and Research Assistant, The Open University
  • Dr Theresa Koroivulaono, University of the South Pacific
  • Dr Vijay Kumar, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Prof Mpine Makoe, University of South Africa
  • Dr Albert Sangra, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya
  • Dr António Moreira Teixeira, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Dr Martin Weller, The Open University
Last Updated on Friday, October 23, 2015 10:49 AM