Teagasc eCollege becomes Teagasc eLearning Support group

Carmel Finlay, Brian Morrissey

Teagasc

During 2009, the fourth full year of operations, the eCollege changed from being a college that delivered courses to the Irish Agri-Food sector into an eLearning Support unit that supported the newly launched Teagasc Lead College/Regional Education Centre model. The eCollege also developed the GCO (Group Co-Ordinator) model of course delivery, with its attendant role profiles, meetings and tracking documents; the “handover” model for the September 09 Advanced Certificate in Agriculture, the REC North delivery model, and the proposed hybrid model (eCollege, Lead Colleges, and RECs). This paper reviews the context for these innovations, the different models of blended course delivery for the ACA, and the factors that drove and enabled this evolution. Our practitioner experience suggests that, in response to rapid structural change and resource curtailment, re-engineering courses and processes should be a higher priority than investing in etutor and co-ordinator training.

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