Over the next few weeks I am taking part in an online course run by SEDA – ‘Developing the Developer.’ The first weeks activities have included general introductions and more focused discussions about planning an ‘event’. The sessions have got me thinking about how I go about planning – I love planning – have lots of ideas get inspired but then the reality of putting it all together sets in and I can get carried away! 🙂
The Seda session got us thinking about the different stages involved in the planning process and enabled me to reflect on what I have done previously when organising conferences, workshops, seminars, presentations etc. It also re-enforced the linkage between planning, implementing and evaluating when considering ideas for future events.
What was interesting was the discussions about the different levels of purpose for each event and how you can evaluate these outcomes. The core course book recommended that we should consider the different levels of purpose including:
- Stimulate/ re-energise staff
- Learn new information about teaching and learning
- Change behaviors/ attitudes towards teaching and learning (Long-term goal)
- Make an impact on the organisation/ student learning over time (Long-term goal)
These different purposes got me thinking a) whether they are always relevant but also b) how do we go about capturing whether or not the objectives have been met? With the longer term goals what sort of study/ survey etc. would capture this?
Another area that I got thinking about from looking at the literature was how we promote the events and make it relevant/ accessible to potential participants. With lots of exciting projects in the pipeline this is an area I need to give more thought to over the next few weeks. So day 1 of the course has been very insightful and inspiring – lots to think about and more questions to be considered over the next few weeks.