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Report on validation requirements published

Living Schools Lab publishes a report that aims to better understand the requirements of both EC-funded projects and ICT vendors that may wish to use the LSL network of schools to validate educational hardware, software, platforms, content and services. The work undertaken also involved an assessment of the expectations of teachers that may be interested in being part of a validation network, particularly in terms of what rewards and incentives would motivate them to be involved in action research projects.

The data for the report was collected in different ways. EC-funded projects took part first in an online survey (11) followed by online interviews (9). Around 30 ICT vendors took part during face-to-face interviews and the LSL teachers took part in an online survey as well as in online group discussions and email exchanges to collect more qualitative feedback.

The key findings of the report include:

  • EC-funded projects: LSL can potentially extend the validation activities of some EC-projects and the majority of the projects surveyed envisage that some form of rewards and incentives are necessary for LSL teachers. 
  • ICT vendors: For ICT vendors, the speed at which validations can be carried out is paramount, so that evaluation results can feed into future product development cycles or support envisaged marketing campaigns. Most companies (even very small SMEs) should be able to motivate and incentivize teachers and schools to participate in validations by providing free software licenses and online webinars/professional development.
  • LSL schools: There is a varied picture of expectations and requirements from schools. As regards the motivation to be involved in the LSL project, the main driver is the opportunities to meet and have peer exchanges with other teachers and continuous professional development opportunities (CPD). For validation, the main driver is the hardware and software donation.
  • LSL validation service: The initial signs are that the foreseen LSL validation service that will be developed is of interest both to TEL researchers and ICT vendors but, in terms of take-up, it may be difficult for currently running EC-funded projects to fully adopt this service given the limitations proposed by their existing work plan and project budgets.

Read the full report here